Bonduc Nut (Caesalpinia bonducella) – Health Benefits, Uses & Side Effects

The Kalarchikai  is scientifically known as Caesalpinia Bonduc. This tree is also known as the medicinal plant, which is used to cure many health problems in the Ayurvedic, Siddha, Homeopathy, Naturopathy medicines in India. This Herb depends on the Leguminosae or Fabaceae family. The native of this plant is India, Burma, and Sri Lanka and also it is commonly found in the coastal areas of tropical Africa.

The bitter taste and warm action of this herb help to maintain the Kapha and Vata Dosha. The kalachikai is rich in proteins, minerals, and vitamins, and also, this herb has a lot of medicinal properties, such as antimalarial, antibacterial, anti-diabetic, and anticancer properties.

This medicinal plant helps to cure many health problems, such as diabetes, women hormones, liver problems, acne, malaria, intermittent fever, etc. The Barks leaves, roots, seeds of this tree are used as a medicine to cure many diseases.

Other Names of Bonduc Nut
Gray nicker, Fever nut, Grey nicker bean, Gray nicker bean, Molucca nut, Guilandina seed, Physic nut, Nicker nut, Wait-a-while, Sea pearl, Cassie, Yellow nicker, Gray Nickarnut, Cockspur, Gray Nickerbean, Gray Nickel, Indian Nut, Guilandina Seed, Sea Pod, Mysore Thorn, beach nicker, Divi-divi, gray nickers, and wait-a-bit.

Common Names of Bonduc Nut

  • Botanical Name: Caesalpinia Bonducella
  • Tamil Name: Kalarci (கழற்சி), Kaccuram (கச்சூரம்), Kalarchikai, Kecca-k-kaay (கெச்சக்காய்), Vajrapijam (வஜ்ரபீஜம்)
  • Hindi Name: Karanju (करानजु), Gajga (गजगा), Kat karanj (कटकरंज), Kat-kaleji (कटकलेजी), Panshul (पांशुल), Putikaranj (पूतिकरंज), Putik (पूतिक)
  • Kannada Name: Gajikekayi, Gejjuga (ಗೆಜ್ಜುಗ)
  • Malayalam Name: Kazhanchi, Kāḻañci (കഴഞ്ച്), Kalimarakam, Kazhanji
  • Telugu Name: Sukajambuka (శూకజంబుక), Gacca (గచ్చ)
  • Sanskrit Name: Angarhavallari (अङ्गारःवल्लरी), Kantakikaranja (कण्टकिकारंज), Kuberakshi (कुबेराक्षी), Latākarañja (लताकरंज), Pattil (पट्टिल), Putikaranja, Raktakaranjavruksha (रक्तकरंजवृक्ष), Vitapakaranja (विटपकरंज)
Common names of bonduc nut

Chemical Components of the Bonduc Nut

Chemical Components of Bonduc Nut

Furanoditerpenes and Cassane Diterpenes

The roots of the bonduc nut have the caesaldekarins F, C, and G, Caesalpinia, and A, B, C bonducellpins. The seed kernels of the bonduc nut have a-caesalpin, y-caesalpin, 3-caesalpin, e-caesalpin, and caesalpinia F.

Fatty Acid, Phytosterols, and Hydrocarbons

The fatty acids of the seed kernels of the Kalarchikai  are stearic, palmitic, octadeca. The phytosterols are heptacosane, linolenic acids, and sitosterol. The hydrocarbons of the bonduc nut are 4-dienoic, octadeca, oleic, and lignoceric

Steroidal saponin

The root of the Kalarchikai has the diosgenin8.

Amino Acids

The seed kernel of the bonduc nut has the arginine, aspartic acid, and citrulline.


The isoflavones are a type of polyphenol. The seed kernels of bonduc nuts have bonducellin; it is one of the types of isoflavones.


The leaves of the Kalarchikai  have the phenolic components, such as flavonoids, phenolic acid, lignans, coumarins, stilbene, quinones, and curcuminoids. Due to these chemical components the leaves have the antibacterial property.

Medicinal Properties of Bonduc Nut

Medicinal Properties of Bonduc Nut

Antimalarial Property

The ethanol extract of the Kalarchikai seed kernel has a good quality of the antimalarial property. When using this extract to the plasmodium berghei infected mouse, it shows the good result by the blood schizontocidal test.

Antidiarrheal Property

The bonduc nut has a significant antidiarrheal property so that it can be used as a remedy for any stomach problems.

Anti Oestrogenic property

The powdered bonduc nuts have the C.bonducella, which is an important chemical component for the anti-oestrogenic property. Moreover, when testing this powder with the mice and rats, the researchers found this bonduc nut has the antifertility action also.

Antiviral Property

The ethanol extract of the stem and root of this bonduc nut has the antiviral property. Due to this property, it can effectively fight against the vaccinia virus.

Antifilarial Property

The ethanol extract of the seed kernel of the Kalarchikai has the antifilarial property that will effectively fight against the litomosoides carinii. The hexane-soluble portion of the seed extract has the 95-5% macrofilaricidal property.

Consuming 1g/kg extract for 42 days helps to lower the microfilaraemia in the body. When testing this extract against the brugia malayi in the mastomys in the same dose of the extract, the production of hexane fraction is gradually reduced in the microfilaraemia up to 91 days but it does not show a macrofilaricidal property. Anyhow, the female worms are sterilized.

Hypolipidemic Property

The aqueous extract of the Kalarchikai seed kernel has the antihypercholesterolemic property. When given this extract to the diabetic rats, it induces the streptozotocin and shows the antihyper triglyceridemia effects.

Anti-inflammatory Property

Research conducted with the rat shows the anti-inflammatory property of the bonduc nut helps to treat formalin arthritis and is used in the granuloma pouch methods.

Consuming the 250 mg/kg of this extract shows a good effect on the granuloma pouch model, and also you can compare favorably with the phenylbutazone. 

Antioxidant Property

The antioxidant property of the bonduc nut helps to reduce the free radical effect on the body, and also it helps to reduce oxidative stress. Due to this property, this herb helps to boost the immune system and helps to protect the body from the various ailments.

Anti-diabetic property

The whole herb contains anti-diabetic property; it helps to maintain the blood sugar level in the body. This herb is also effectively used to reduce the diabetes symptoms, such as fatigue, increasing urination, excessive thirst, weight loss, slow healing of wounds, and blurry vision.

Anti-parasitic property

The anti-parasitic property is effectively extruding out the helminths and other internal parasites from the body. This herb effectively fights against the tapeworms, roundworms, and flukes in the body. Moreover, this herb is used to control the symptoms, such as anemia, diarrhea, lung disease, and worms infection in the liver.

Antispasmodic Property

This herb suppresses the spasms and helps to reduce muscular tension. The smooth muscles which line the stomach contract without any conscious control may cause cramps, spasms, and abdominal pain. This herb helps to manage the cramps throughout the body. This herb also acts in the central nervous system and also helps to relax the psychological tension.

Ayurvedic Properties of Kalarchikai

Qualities (Guna): Light (Laghu), Dryness (Ruksha)
Taste (Rasa): Bitter (Tikta), Astringent (Kashaya)
Taste after digestion (Vipaka): Pungent (Katu)
Potency (Veerya): Hot (Ushna)
Effect on Tridosha: Balances all three Doshas

Ayurvedic Health Benefits of Bonduc Nut

Treats Diabetes

Due to the medicinal property of this Kalarchikai , it helps to control the blood sugar level. Crack the Kalarchikai  and extract the kernel of these seeds.

Soak the bonduc nut for a night, then consume the nut in the morning and drink that soaked water also. Repeat this process for 15 days then check your blood sugar level. This will help to  maintain the insulin level in the body so that it will reduce the sugar level in the blood.

Also Read: 10 Proven Herbs for Diabetes 

Treats Ulcer

The healing property of this herb efficiently helps to cure ulcers. Grind the root barks of the bonduc nut and add some water to make a paste. Apply this paste on the ulcers ; this will help to heal ulcer wounds.

Cures Ascites

The ascites are defined as increasing the fluid in the peritoneal cavity; it may cause abdominal swelling. This will cause some serious stomach problems.

The bonduc nut will help to cure these problems. Prepare a decoction by using the Kalarchikai flower and consume a glass of decoction when you need it. This will help to avoid the accumulation of fluid.

Helps to Cure Abscess

The bonduc nut has the anticancer property; it helps to heal an abscess. Grind the Kalarchikai and add some water to make a paste. Apply this paste on the affected area. Doing this process twice per day will help to cure the swelling of your body tissue.

Treats Goitre

The goitre is caused by the swelling in the glandular; it is also defined as a form of tuberculosis. Due to the antioxidant property of the Kalarchikai, it helps to cure goitre. Dry the bonduc nut kernel, grind and fry the kernel in the butter. Then apply it to the affected area that will help to cure goitre.

Used to Treat Liver Problems

The Anthelmintic property of the bonduc nut will help to cure the problems in the internal organs. Add the 2 pinches of Kalarchikai  powder in a glass of goat milk and consume it twice per day. It will help to cure liver problems.

Treats Asthma

Due to the hot potency of this bonduc nut, it will help to treat asthma. Roast the bonduc nut kernel and prepare the decoction by using the roasted kernel. Consume half cup of decoction per day in the morning in an empty stomach. This will help to cure asthma.

Also Read: 10 Best Herbs for Asthma

Treats Leprosy

The leprosy is a contagious disease that will affect the mucous membranes, skin, and nerves, and also it causes discoloration and lumps on the surface.

The anti-bacterial, anti-inflammatory, and antioxidant properties of this kalarchikai effectively fight against these problems. Crush the Kalarchikai and add some water to make a paste. Apply this paste every day on the infected area, which helps to cure leprosy.

Cures Paralysis

Usually, paralysis is caused because of illness, injuries, or poison. It will affect the movement of this body; the extract of the Kalarchikai will help to treat paralysis. Massaging this extract with the lukewarm oil for 10 minutes every day before sleeping will show great results in paralysis.

Used as Styptic

Due to the anti-inflammatory property of this bonduc nut, it will be used to stop bleeding on the wounds. Grind the bonduc seeds and add some water to make a paste. Apply this paste on the affected area; it will help to prevent styptic.

Treats Skin Problems

In ayurvedic medicine, the Kalarchikai is used to cure some skin problems, such as rashes, skin infections, acne, etc. The antibacterial property of this herb helps to remove the bacterias in the skin.

Crush the dried Kalarchikai and add it in any carrier oil. Apply the oil on the affected area twice per day; it will help to cure skin infections.

Also Read: 10 Best Herbs for Skin

Used as Purgative

This herb has anti-laxative properties so that it is good medicine for purgative in folk medicine. Grind the dried bonduc seeds and consume the two pinches of powder with the water; this will help to purify the water.

Treats Diarrhea

Indigestion and microbial action are the main reason for diarrhea. The digestive property of this bonduc nut will help to prevent indigestion. Consume the 1/4 tsp of bonduc nut powder with a cup of lukewarm milk twice per day. It will help to cure diarrhea.

Treats Constipation

The deficiency of fiber causes constipation; the Kalarchikai has a good amount of fiber, which helps to treat constipation. Fry the Kalarchikai leaves in the butter and consumes the three grams of fried leaves thrice per day; it will help to cure constipation.

Also Read: 10 Effective Herbal Remedies for Constipation 

Treats Inflammation

Due to the anti-inflammatory property of this herb, it is used to cure swelling in the joints and bones. Bandage the bonduc nut leaves on the inflamed area, which helps to cure pains.

Helps with Joint Pain

This bonduc nut is also used to cure joint pain. Massage the Kalarchikai oil on the painful area; it will effectively reduce the pains in the joints.

Treats Fever

The bonduc nut is used to treat fever in folk medicines. Powder the 100 gm of bonduc nut seed with the 15 gm of Aconitum heterophyllum seeds. Consume 1/4 tsp of this powder with the same amount of sugar. It will help to cure the common fever because of the cold. 

If the fever is caused because of malaria, then you can try this remedy. Roast the bonduc nut seeds and powder the roasted seeds with the same amount of long pepper. Consume 1/4 tsp of these powders with 1 tsp of honey twice per day. It helps to cure fever because of malaria.

Also Read: 10 Incredible Herbs to Cure Fever

Treats Orchitis

The orchitis is defined as the inflammation of one or two testicles. It may cause some serious infection for women; the Kalarchikai  is used to treat this problem.

Grind the dried Kalarchikai and add the castor oil to make a paste. Apply this paste on the affected area and cover it by using a cotton cloth. Repeat this process once per day until it cures the infection.

Cures Malaria

This bonduc nut has antimalarial properties so that it is used to cure malaria. Mix the bonduc seed powder and black pepper powder in a 2:1 ratio. Consume the four gms of this mixture twice per day. It will help to cure malaria.

Treats Hydrocele

The serous fluid accumulation in the body causes hydrocele, it may cause some lung problems. The bonduc nut helps to avoid the accumulation of serous fluid. Grind the bonduc nut seed and mix it with the castor oil to make a thick paste. Apply this paste to the infected area regularly. It helps to cure hydrocele.

Used as an Expectorant

The bonduc nut is used as a medicine to increase the sputum secretion by the air passages; it is used to treat cough. Grind the bonduc seeds with an equal amount of long pepper. Consume 1/4 tsp of this powder with honey in the morning for three days. 

Treats Gum Diseases

The bonduc nut powder is also used to strengthen the gum and helps to cure gum diseases. Burn the bonduc seed, areca nuts, and alum and crush them. Add some water to make the paste and apply it on the affected area.

Treats Prostate enlargement

Mix the 1/2 tsp each of Kalarchikai, tribulus terrestris, areca catechu, crataeva nurvala, asparagus racemosus, and agate gemstone. Consume this mixture after the meals for three months. You can also buy the capsule with a mixture of these all herbs. You can consume the tablet 2 times per day after meals. 

Traditional Uses of Bonduc Nut

  • The paste made by the twings and the bonduc nut leaves helps to reduce the toothaches.
  • The Kalarchikai is used to treat malarial fever, countering fever, and intermittent fever.
  • It helps to cure sweating deficiency and curbs body odor.
  • The boiled Kalarchikai for the gargling to cure a sore throat.
  • This herb is a great advantage that effectively fights against smallpox.
  • The extract of the bonduc leaves helps to treat elephantiasis.
  • This herb helps to stop the growth of tumors.
  • In Ayurveda, this herb is used to control diabetes.
  • The bonduc nut helps to check spleen disorders.
  • The Kalarchikai is a good remedy for liver problems.
  • These Kalarchikai help to relieve hydrocele, skin diseases, inflammation, leprosy, and colic.
  • The bonduc nut seeds of this herb have the astringent properties.
  • The Kalarchikai are used to treat intestinal worms, and also provides better relief from the inflammation of the large intestine. It helps to cure colic pain.
  • The fruit of this herb helps to treat wounds, piles, urinary disorders, and leucorrhoea.
  • This herb used to treat menopause problems, such as no menses, intermittent menses. It provides better relief from abdominal pain during menopause.
  • The Kalarchikai has the antidiarrheal property, which helps to cure diarrhea and loose motions.
  • This herb is good for joint pain and mitigating arthritis.
  • Traditionally this herb is used to cure skin problems, such as leucoderma, leprosy, blisters, boils, and wounds.
  • The extract of these leaves are traditionally used for smallpox, elephantiasis, liver problem, and respiration odor.
  • The root bark of this tree is used to treat tumors, intestinal worms, fever, amenorrhea, cough, and helps to remove the placenta after childbirth.
  • The Kalarchikai have the astringent, which helps to control contagious.
  • In Sri Lanka, it used to treat toothache.
  • The sprouts of the seeds used to treat tumors.
  • The paste made by the Kalarchikai powder with castor oil used as the ointments.
  • The oil prepared by the bonduc nut used to treat ulcers, paralysis, and convulsions.
  • Apply the roasted leaves and seeds with the castor oil on the inflammatory swelling, especially for hydrocele, inflamed piles, and orchitis.
  • The roots, leaves, and seeds used to treat bradycardia, tachycardia, tympanitis, tuberculosis, abdomen pain, fever, cough, and cold and liver fluke in ruminants.
  • The Kalarchikai skin is used to treat leucorrhea.
  • The fresh juice of leaves with the honey to ward off the mucous secretions.
  • The Kalarchikai oil is used to treat rheumatism.
  • Consuming the paste of the seeds helps to treat snakebite.
  • The seeds are used to treat swelling and restraining hemorrhage.
  • The oil is prepared by using seeds used to treat paralysis and convulsions.
  • The decoction of the roasted bonduc nut kernel used to treat asthma.
  • The bonduc nut kernel paste helps to get better relief from swelling and boils.
  • The extract or powder of the bonduc nut kernel with the salt, ginger, and honey is good for children’s stomach problems.

Other facts about Kalarchikai 

  • The seeds of this herb are also used as beads for the ornaments, such as bracelets, necklaces, rosaries, etc.
  • The oil pressed from the seeds helps to remove the freckles from the face.
  • It is also used as a cosmetic and used to stop discharges from ears.
  • Sometimes the Indian Children are using these seeds as marbles in their games.
  • The seeds are also used as the weight in the board games.

Side Effects of Bonduc Nut

Side Effects of Bonduc Nut

Due to the medicinal properties of this bonduc nut, it is used in the ayurvedic, Siddha medicine, to treat many health issues. But some side effects also occur in this herb so that you have to know the side effects of the Kalarchikai before consumption.

  • You have to use this Kalarchikai carefully because the large dosage of this herb may be toxic.
  • Don’t use this herb more than the prescribed dose. Consuming the large dosage will not improve the symptoms, but it may cause poisonous and some severe side-effects.

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