Lagundi / Vitex Negundo Herbal Medicine

Lagundi uses, health benefits, side effects, warnings.of use.

Lagundi (scientific name: Vitex negundo) is a large native shrub that grows in Asia and Southeast Asia such as the Philippines and India and has been traditionally used as herbal medicine and is an important medicinal plant in Ayurvedic and Unani systems of medicine. The extracts from its leaves and roots are mostly considered to provide the most health benefits. The Philippine Department of Health has conducted research and study for Lagundi and has suggested that the lagundi plant has a number of verifiable therapeutic value and health benefits to man.

Vitex negundo leaf

Scientific Name : Vitex Negundo

Also knows as:
Dabtan (If.) Dangla (Ilk.) Kamalan (Tag.) Lagundi (Ibn., Tag., Bik., P. Bis.) Liñgei (Bon.) Nigundi (Sanskrit/Hindi) Limo-limo (Ilk.) Sagarai (Bag.) Turagay (Bis.) Five-leaved chaste tree (Engl.) Huang Ching (Chin.) Agno-casto (Spanish)

Lagundi (Vitex negundo) is an erect, branched tree or shrub, that grows to as much as 5 m high. Lagundi has a single thick, woody stem like a trunk and is usually seen in swamps of the Philippines and India. Lagundi leaves appear palmately, in the form of five pointed leaves which splay out like the fingers of a hand. Lagundi leaves are 5-foliate, rarely with 3 leaflets only. Lagundi leaves are 4-10 cm long, slightly hairy beneath. The lagundi flowers are blue to lavender, 6-7 mm long bearing fruit globose of about 4mm in diameter that turns black when ripe.

Lagundi / Vitex Negundo Traditional Health Benefits

Lagundi in Traditional and Folkloric Medicine

Lagundi or Vitex negundo has been traditionally used as herbal medicine by Philippine and Indian folks. It;'s main health benefit is to ease respiratory complaints. Lagundi is generally used for the treatment of coughs, asthma symptoms, and other respiratory problems.

Lagundi is also known for its analgesic effect that helps alleviate pain and discomfort. Other traditional health benefits that are derived from the use of Lagundi are as follows:

  • Lagundi is used to prevent and treat worm infestation
  • Lagundi is also used treat skin diseases such as eczema, ring worm, etc.
  • Used to wash wounds to promote healing,
  • Lagundi has an analgesic function to treat rheumatism, muscle pain and inflammation of joints
  • Lagunid is used for anorexia,
  • Used to treat Stomach problems such as colic, spasms and indisgeston,
  • Lagundi has claimed health benefits against high cholesterol.
  • Lagundi is also used as a carminative herb
  • Lagundi is believed to promote good memory and eye sight,
  • Lagundi tea is taken to relieve anxiety and to promote relaxation.

The old folks would burn Vitex negundo leaves ane the smoke is believed to drive away insects, particularly mosquitoes.

Science Based Health Benefits from Lagundi

Lagundi Essential Oils has Anti Bacterial Properties

The Indian Journal of Pharmaceutical Sciences (2008 Jul-Aug) Published a research that studied the anti-bacterial properties of Vitex negundo extracts. In this study it was found that the root and leaf extract is active against some bacteria such as  B. subtilis and E. coli. The result is promising in comparision to standard drug ciprofloxacin.

Lagundi / Vitex negundo Anit Inflamatory Activity

The Indian Journal of Medical Research. (2006 Oct) published a study on Vitex negundo Linn leaf extract health benefit as an adjuvant therapy to standard anti-inflammatory drugs. This was done in lab mice by inducing inflammation and subjecting to anti-inflamatory drugs together with orally administered Vitex negundo extracts. The results suggests that VN has a positve effect as adjutant for anti-inflammatory drugs ibuprofen and phenlbutazone.

Lagundi / Vitex negundo has Brochodilator Activity. Health Benefits for Asthma Confirmed.

According to Pharmaceutical Biology (2015 Mar) a study .That examines the bronchodilator activity of Vitex negundo as claimed in traditional medicine. The underlying mechanisms were studied in isolated guinea pig tracheal strips, suspended in organ baths at 37 °C and was subjected to VN extract. Results suggest that Vitex negundo extracts possesses a combination of papaverine-like PDE inhibitor and diltiazem-like Ca(++) entry blocking constituents, which partly explain its bronchodilatory effect, thus validating its medicinal importance in asthma.

Cytotoxic flavone analogues of vitexicarpin, a constituent of the leaves of Vitex negundo.

Bioassay-guided fractionation of the chloroform-soluble extract of the leaves of Vitex negundo led to the isolation of the known flavone vitexicarpin, this substance exhibited broad cytotoxicity in a human cancer cell line panel. This findings suggests the potential anti-cancer activity of Vitex negund extract and can further investigation may be done. Source: Journal of Natural Products. (2003 Jun)

Lagundi / Vitex Negundo Preparation and Use

Lagundi / Vitex negundo topical paste. Used as anti-inflammation and analgesic in cases of rehumatism, arthritis, muscle pains, headache and fever. The paste is prepared by pounding Lagundi leaves and heating to warm then apply to affected area until condition improves.

Lagundi / Vitex negundo decoction and Tea. Used for washing wounds, vaginal douche, for gargling to treat mouth sores and sore throat and as bronchodilator in cases of coughs and asthma.. Mix one cup of cut fresh leaves and floweres to 2 cups of water. Boil for 10 minutes. Let it steep and strain the solid parts. Tea: take 1/2 cup, three times a day until condition improve.

Lagundi Oil. The Vitex negundo oil can be extracted by distillation or a commercial grade can be bought in herbs stores or online shops. An Amazon listed Pure Nirgundi Oil 30ml -Vitex Negundo Linn. is an example and can be used in combination with other carrier oils.

Vitex Nagundo Tablets and Capsules and Syrups. Check you local pharmacy for supplies. Amazon also listed DR WAKDE's Organic Nirgundi capsules (Vitex negundo). Follow the instructions in the accompanying labels.

Lagundi / Vitex Negundo Warnings, Side Effects and References

Lagundi use is widely acceptable as safe for use for children and adults and no adverse reaction has been reported. However, moderate use is recommended for pregnant women, and treatment should not exceed one week. If symptoms persist and irritation occurs, stop the use and consult your doctor.

Vitex negundo / Lagundi Herbal Medicine: Useful References

Bansod MS, Harle UN. Vitex negundo l.: Phytochemical costituets, traditioal uses ad pharmacological properties: Comprehesive review. Pharmacologyonline. 2009;1:286–02.

Tandon VR, Gupta RK. Vitex negundo Linn. (VN) leaf extract as an adjuvant therapy to standard anti-inflammatory drugs. Indian J Med Res. 2006;124:447–50. [PubMed]

Gautam LN, Shrestha SL, Wagle P, Tamrakar BM. Chemical constituents from Vitex negundo (Linn.) of Nepalese origin. Sci World. 2008;6:27–32.

Patil A. Medicinal uses of Vitex negundo Linn. Indian Pat Appl. CODEN: INXXBQ IN 2003MU00761 A 20060616. 2006

Biswal S, Murthy PN, Sahu J, Mohapatra AK, Sahoo P, Sarangi C, et al. Biological activities of Vitex negundo Linn: An overview. Pharmbit. 2008;17:17–25.

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Article last reviewed: 09.30.2016