NOM. VULG.—Malakabuyaw, Tag.; Tabog, Pam., Tag. (A species of Bael-Fruit Tree.) USES.—We do not know the medicinal use of this plant in the Philippines.
Probably it has none, but we may give those of the species. R. marmelos, Cor., the fruit of which is almost identical with that of our species and is called Bela or Bael in India. The fruit of the Malakabuyaw is ovoid and full of a mucilaginous pulp, aromatic and acid, the same as that of the Bael. The uses of the latter are the following: The pulp acts as an astringent, but it would be more correctly called a tonic of the intestinal mucosa, for it has been experimentally proved that, although it checks diarrhoea, it also acts as a laxative in chronic constipation. In both conditions it seems to operate by toning and regulating the functions of the intestine.
Martin, an English physician, was the first to call attention to the properties of Bael, and according to Dr. Green one dose of the pulp of the ripe fruit, prepared with sugar and given every morning, is an efficient remedy in the treatment of the dyspepsia of Europeans in India, especially in the form characterized by constipation and flatulence. The green fruit is a powerful astringent used by the Hindoos for diarrhoea. In cholera epidemics Dr. Bose advises the daily use of an ice made from the pulp of the ripe fruit, the object being the regulation of the functions of the intestine.
The Pharmacopoeia of India contains the following preparations: Mixture.— Pulp of the ripe fruit 60 grams.
Water 120 grams.
Sugar 60 grams.
Mix, and if desired add chopped ice. This forms a very agreeable drink which has the aroma of the fruit itself, and may be repeated 2–3 times a day. When the fruit is ripe, this preparation is not only astringent in cases of diarrhoea, but possesses the additional property of increasing the appetite. If the patient’s stomach is very weak, the preparation may produce vomiting in which event it is necessary to give it in small doses or to employ the extract.
Extract of Bael.—Pulp of the ripe fruit is placed in a vessel and sufficient water added to cover it. It is then heated and evaporated to the consistency of a soft extract. The dose is 2–4 grams, 2, 3 or 4 times a day.
Fluid Extract of Bael.— Pulp of Bael 500 grams.
Water 3 liters.
Rectified alcohol 60 grams.
The Bael is macerated in a third of the water and at the end of 12 hours the liquid is decanted and another third of water is added; the maceration is repeated and the same process followed till the last third of water is used. Express the residuum, put all the liquid into one vessel, filter and evaporate till reduced to 800 grams, then cool and add the alcohol. Dose, 4–8 grams.
The fluid extract is less active than the freshly prepared solid extract.
According to Dr. G. Bidie, the fruit of the Feronia elephantum, Correa (the species that grows in the Philippines), possesses the same properties as Bael. Its leaves are astringent, aromatic and carminative, and the gum with which the trunk of the tree is covered is a good substitute for gum arabic.
BOTANICAL DESCRIPTION.—A tree 7–8 meters high, the trunk covered with large, solitary spines. Leaves alternate, ternate. Leaflets lanceolate, scalloped and glabrous, the middle one larger than the others. Calyx 5-toothed. Corolla, 5 thick petals, linear, much longer than the calyx. Stamens 10. Ovary cylindrical. Style and stigma thick. Fruit oblong, more than 3′ long and 2′ thick, with a surface irregular with prominences and grooves; 10 or more compartments, each containing several ovoid, compressed seeds, ending with a woolly tuft.
HABITAT.—San Mateo, Montalbán (Manila); Arayat (La Pampanga).
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