Abelmoschus moschatus seeds, Ambrette herb and seeds health benefit and research studies, what are the benefits of this plant?
February 1 2017

Abelmoschus moschatus is also known as Ambrette seeds, Annual hibiscus, Musk mallow, Musk seeds, Ornamental okra. Hibiscus abelmoschus is an aromatic and medicinal plant native to India. The ambrette seeds have a sweet, flowery, heavy fragrance similar to that of musk. Abelmoschus manihot is used to make neri, a starchy substance used in making Washi.

Traditional uses
Abelmoschus moschatus leaves and seeds are considered as valuable traditional medicine. The aromatic seeds of this plant are aphrodisiac, ophthalmic, cardio tonic, antispasmodic and used in the treatment of intestinal complaints and check queasiness.

Chemicals and substances in ambrette seeds
Volatile organic nitrogen-containing constituents in ambrette seed Abelmoschus moschatus.
J Agric Food Chem. 2008. Kunming Institute of Botany, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Kunming, China.
A detailed investigation of the basic fraction of a CO2 extract of ambrette seeds Abelmoschus moschatus revealed a total of 58 nitrogen-containing compounds. All the identified nitrogen-containing compounds are reported here for the first time in ambrette seeds. Among these are 27 pyrazine derivatives and 12 pyridines. The odor of the basic fraction was assumed to be due to these pyrazines and pyridines and also the presence of seven thiazoles. The odors described suggest that these N-compounds contribute to what is described in perfumery terms as the “natural and rounded” character of the ambrette extract.

Antioxidant
BMC Complement Altern Med. 2011. Evaluation of Abelmoschus moschatus extracts for antioxidant, free radical scavenging, antimicrobial and antiproliferative activities using in vitro assays. To give a scientific basis for traditional usage of this medicinal plant, the seed and leaf extracts were evaluated for their antioxidant, free radical scavenging, antimicrobial and antiproliferative activities. The seed and leaf extracts of A. moschatus possess significant antioxidant activity and could serve as free radical inhibitors or scavenger, or substitute, probably as primary antioxidants. The plant possesses moderate antibacterial activity against bacterial strains used in this study. Hydroalcoholic seed and leaf extracts also exhibited antiproliferative activity against two human cancer cell lines. A. moschatus may therefore, be a good candidate for functional foods as well as pharmaceutics.

Blood sugar and diabetes
The blood sugar lowering action of myricetin, purified from the aerial part of Abelmoschus moschatus, has been investigated in streptozotocin-induced diabetic rats.

Improvement of insulin sensitivity in obese Zucker rats by myricetin extracted from Abelmoschus moschatus.
Planta Med. 2007. Department of Pharmacy, Tajen University, Yanpu Shiang, Ping Tung Shien, Taiwan, ROC.
In an attempt to develop new substances for treating insulin resistance, obese Zucker rats were employed to screen the effect of myricetin, an active principle of Abelmoschus moschatus, on insulin resistance. Myricetin was administered intravenously into animals. These findings indicate that myricetin from Abelmoschus moschatus herb improves insulin sensitivity through increased post-receptor insulin signaling in muscles of obese Zucker rats. Myricetin might be used as a model substance for the development of antidiabetic compounds.

Abelmoschus moschatus, an aromatic plant, suitable for medical or food uses to improve insulin sensitivity.
Phytother Res. 2009. Liu IM, Tzeng TF, Liou SS. Department of Pharmacy and Graduate Institute of Pharmaceutical Technology, Tajen University, Yanpu Shiang, Ping Tung Shien, Taiwan, R.O.C.
Abelmoschus moschatus is an aromatic and medicinal plant, distributed in many parts of Asia, including south Taiwan. The present study was undertaken to clarify whether the herb is effective in improving insulin resistance. Insulin resistance in rats was induced by a diet containing 60% fructose for 6 weeks. The degree of insulin resistance was measured by homeostasis model assessment of basal insulin resistance (HOMA-IR). Insulin sensitivity was calculated using the composite whole body insulin sensitivity index during the oral glucose tolerance test. Insulin receptor-related signaling mediators in soleus muscles of rats were evaluated by immunoprecipitation or immunoblotting. The extract of A. moschatus had a higher level of polyphenolic flavonoids. A. moschatus extract (200 mg/kg per day) displayed the characteristics of rosiglitazone (4 mg/kg per day) in reducing the higher HOMA-IR index in fructose chow-fed rats after a 2-week treatment. Treatment with moschatus extract for 2 weeks increased post-receptor insulin signaling. A. moschatus is therefore proposed as potentially useful adjuvant therapy for patients with insulin resistance and/or the subjects wishing to increase insulin sensitivity.

Okra is Abelmoschus esculentus
Okra pods are used in Asia as a vegetable, food ingredient, as well as a traditional medicine for many different purposes; for example, as diuretic agent, for treatment of dental diseases and to reduce/prevent gastric irritations. The healthy properties are suggested to originate from the high polysaccharide content of okra pods, resulting in a highly viscous solution with a slimy appearance when okra is extracted with water.

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