Department of Health in the Philippines
Scientific Research on Medicinal Herbs
Scientific name: Vitex Negundo
Lagundi is a shrub that grows in the Philippines. It is one of the ten herbal medicines endorsed by the Philippine Department of Health as an effective herbal medicine with proven therapeutic value. Lagundi has been clinically tested to be effective in the treatment of colds, flu, bronchial asthma, chronic bronchitis and pharyngitis. Studies have shown that Lagundi can prevent the body’s production of leukotienes which are released during an asthma attack. Lagundi contains Chrysoplenol D – a substance with anti-histamine properties and muscle relaxant.
Plant Description: The Lagundi plant can grow up to five meters tall. It has a single woody stem. Lagundi distinctive feature are the pointed leaves with five leaflets set like a hand.
• Relief of asthma and pharyngitis
• Relief of rheumatism, dyspepsia, boils diarrhea (roots)
• Treatment of chough, colds, fever and flu and other bronchopulmonary disorders
• Alleviate symptoms of Chicken Pox
• Removal of worms and boils
Hepatoprotective effect of Vitex negundo against carbon tetrachloride-induced liver damage
Leaf decoction for fever, headache, toothache, cough, asthma.
(1) For fever and toothaches, boil 6 tbsp of the chopped leaves in 2 glasses of water for 15 minutes; strain and cool. Divide the decoction in 3 parts and take one part every 3-4 hours. Also, bruised leaves may be applied to forehead.
(2) For asthma and cough: Take 1/4 of the decoction three times a day.
Pounded leaves applies on the forehead and temples for headaches.
(3) Aromatic bath or sponge bathing: Boil 4 handfuls of leaves in a pot of water for 5 minutes; use the lukewarm decoction for sponge bathing.
(4) Wounds and ulcers: Use infusion of leaves as wash.
• In Ayurveda and Unani, leaves and seeds used for rheumatism and joint inflammation. Decoction of leaves taken as a diuretic.
Lagundi has been proven to be an effective analgesic and antitussive (prepared as a pleasant tasting cough syrup) and has been considered as a replacement for dextromethorphan in the public health system.
Studies have shown benefit through reduction of coughing and relaxation of the bronchial smooth muscles. Being promoted by the Department of Health (DOH) for cough and asthma. One of a few herbs recently registered with the Bureau of Foods and Drugs (BFAD) as medicines.
• Anti-Venom: Snake venom neutralization by Indian medicinal plants (Vitex negundo and Emblica officinalis) root extracts: A methanolic extract study of VN showed it possesses potent snake venom neutralizing capacity and suggests further investigation.
• Anti-Inflammatory: Vitex negundo Linn (VN) leaf extract as an adjuvant therapy to standard anti-inflammatory drugs: VN significantly potentiated antiinflammatory activity of phenylbutazone and ibuprofen in albino rats.
• Anti-Inflammatory Activity: Anti-inflammatory Activity and Mechanism of Action of Vitex negundo Linn: Study suggests VN possess anti-imflammatory activity against acute and sub-acute inflammation probably due to prostaglandin inhibition and reduction of oxidative stress.
• Antibacterial: Essential oil composition and antibacterial studies of Vitex negundo linn. extracts: : Study showed the essential oils and extracts to have antibacterial activity. Ethyl acetate and ethanol extracts showed prominent antibacterial activity against all tested strains.
• Antifungal: (1) New antifungal flavonoid glycoside from Vitex negundo: Study found a new isolated flavone glycoside and a known compound to have significant antifungal activity against Tricophyton mentagrophytes and Cryptococcus neoformans. (2) Ethanol extract of fruit seeds showed significant activity against Fusarium solani and moderate response against Microsporum canis with no effect against C albicans.
• Larvicidal: Differential larvicidal efficacy of four species of Vitex against Culex quinquefasciatus larvae: The methanolic extracts of all Vitex species showed varying levels of larvicidal activity.
• Anthelmintic: Study of ethanolic extracts of Moringa oleifera and Vitex negundo on anthelmintic activity against Indian earthworm Pheritima posthuma showed both to have dose dependent activity, with Moringa oleifera showing more activity.
How to make lagundi syrup
• Clean fresh lagundfi leaves and chop.
• In 4 glasses of water, boil 4 tablespoons of minced lagundi leaves for 50 minutes.
• Strain the liquid extract and add 1 part honey to 4 parts extracts.
• Boil in an earthen pot or enamel-lined saucepan for 15 minutes until the desired viscosity is attained; cool.
• Pour the syrup in clear amber-colored bottles.