Jimson Weed Medicinal Uses, Side Effects and Benefits

What is Jimson weed?

Jimson weed is distributed all over the world. All the species of Jimson weed are toxic in nature. The seeds and flowers are more poisonous in nature. In spite of this, Jimson weed is used as medicine in the Ayurveda system of traditional medicine in the formulation of many drugs. The different types of biochemical substances such as tropane, alkaloids, atropine, hyoscyamine, scopolamine, etc. which are poisonous in nature are present in it. Its leaves and seeds are used to make medicine.

Teens used it as drugs because of their strong anticholinergic properties. In fact, they are using it as innocence. It has been used as medicine and intoxicant for the long times. Its danger level increases when one takes higher doses of it.

Jimson weed distribution

The native place of Jimson weed is the United States of America (USA) but with the passage of time, it is spread all over the world. In the USA, the poisonous plant is basically confined to the Southern parts of the country and Mexico. The plant is also found in the arid zone of America such as southern California, East Texas, and the northern region of Arizona, Utah, and Nevada. Being a traditional medicinal plant, it is also grown in plant nursery. It is also found in the tropical as well as temperate regions across the world. In Europe, the wasteland and garbage are the cultivable regions for this plant. As far as India is concerned, it is found in the Himalayan region.

Common names of Jimson weed

It has been known by many names such as Datura, stinkweed, mad apple, thorn apple stramonium, tatula, etc. The other common names of the plant are:

  • English Name- Thorn apple, Devil’s trumpet, Metel
  • Arabic name – Datur
  • Persian name – Tatur
  • Hindi Name- Sada Dhatura
  • Tamil Name- Ummattangani/ Vella- Ummathai
  • Telugu Name- Ummetta
  • Bengal Name- Dhattura
  • Gujarati name – Dhattura
  • Marathi Name-Dhattura
  • Kannada name- Unmatta, Dhattura
  •  Malayalam Name- Unmatta, Dhattura

Jimson weed classification

  • Botanical name: Datura stramonium
  • Kingdom: Plantae
  • Division: Magnoliophyta
  • Class: Magnoliopsida
  • Order: Solanales
  • Family: Solanaceae (deadly Nightshade family)
  • Genus: Jimson
  • Species: Datura stramonium

 List of Jimson weed species

  • Datura wrightii also called Southwestern Thorn Apple
  • Datura stramonium also called Jimson weed
  • Datura metaloides also called sacred datura
  • Datura inoxia named as Toloache
  • Datura discolor is also known as Moonflower.
  • Datura ceratocaula
  • Datura ferox: long spined thorn-apple
  • Datura leichhardti: Leichhardt’s datura
  • Datura quercifolia: Oak-leaf thorn-apple

Jimson weed medicinal uses

Jimson weed is not a normal plant, so extra precaution is needed while using this plant for medicinal purposes.

  • The juice of the plant when applied over the scalp, helps to treat hair fall, hair loss, and dandruff.
  • It is a good insect repellent thus protects other plants of its surroundings from insects.
  • Poisonous biochemical substances such as scopolamine, hyoscyamine, and atropine are present in it.

Jimson weed drugs and medicinal benefits

Due to the presence of biochemical compounds such as scopolamine and atropine, its medicinal value has been recognized by FDA.

  • It is used as a flying ointment and applies to the soles of the feet, vagina, and armpits.
  • It is being used as some type of brew named Ayahuasca brews.
  • The blends of Jimson weed and cannabis are used largely in cigarette or pipe smoking.
  • It is also helpful in treating respiratory disorders.
  • Scopolamine and atropine are used as sedatives
  • It is helpful in case of motion sickness, nausea, and dizziness.
  • In some parts of the world, it is also used as analgesic and anesthesia.

Jimson weed benefits

  • Jimson weed leaves act as a pain killer. When its roasted leaves are applied over the affected area, helps to relieve pain.
  • It is used for ayurvedic medicine, especially in case of asthma.
  • Its leaves are used as anti-asthmatic and antispasmodic.
  • It has beneficial impacts on fistulas and abscesses.
  • Due to the presence of biochemical substances like hyoscyamine and atropine, it may be used as a mind-altering drug.
  • Jimson weeds oil extract is beneficial for hair.
  • It is helpful to relieve headaches.
  • Its leaf infusion has a good impact on arthritis and rheumatism.
  • Jimson weed extract ethanol is used as a repellent against larva and mosquito.
  • Its leaf juice is good for earache.
  • Though, it’s a poison, even though, it is used to treat cough, flu, influenza, etc.
  • It is also used as a hallucination drug to create the ambiance of well-being.
  • It is used in case of intestinal cramps, diarrhea, and bed-wetting.

Jimson weed side effects

  • Being a poisonous herb, it should be taken only after consultation with an experienced ayurvedic doctor.
  • The bio-chemicals like scopolamine and atropine are used as poison.
  • It may increase the heartbeat and may lead to cardiac arrest.
  • The chemicals anticholinergic may lead to abnormal behavior.
  • It is good to dilate pupils.
  • Blurred vision, hallucinations, giddiness, and hyperthermia, difficulty urinating are some of the side effects of Jimson weed.
  • It can show an adverse reaction to the nervous system.
  • Its juice is strictly not in favor of the health of the eyes.

Jimson weed poisoning symptoms

After taking Jimson weed, the person may be seen with the following symptoms

  • Incoherent speech
  • Rapid heartbeat
  • Dry skin
  • Impaired coordination
  • Seizures
  • Cardiac arrest
  • Blurred vision
  • Urine retention
  • Abdominal pain
  • Dilated pupils
  • Dry mouth
  • Elevated blood pressure
  • Convulsion
  • Red skin
  • Fever and thrust
  • Restlessness
  • Depression
  • Rapid breathing
  • Nervousness

Jimson weed poisonous substance

 Jimson weed is a herb, grows as a weed along with soybean cultivation throughout the world.  All the parts of Jimson weed are poisonous, especially the leaves and seeds. Hungry animals on the field become the prey of this poisonous plant. Chickens also become infected with the contaminated seeds of this plant. Children also become attracted to this plant because of the beauty of the flower. The poisonous chemical with the plant are:     

  • Atropine
  • Hyoscine
  • Hyoscyamine
  • Tropane alkaloids

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