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Cicer arietinum

Latin Name: Cicer arietinum
English Names: Bengal Gram, Caravance, ChickPea, Garbanzo Gram
Sanskrit / Indian Names: Chanaka, Harimantha

An erect or spreading much-branched annual herb, covered all over with glandular hair, extensively cultivated.
Whole gram contains saccharose, glucose, fructose, polysaccharides including starch, g-galactan, levulose and p -galactoaraban, betaine, choline, adenine, inositol, phytin, saponin and citric and oxalic acids. The fresh whole germ of sprouting gram contains biochanin A, biochanin B and biochanin C. The isoflavones, biochanin A and formononetin are reported to be estrogenic and also show hypolipidemic activity.

Gram is a potent hypocholesterolemic agent. The anti-stress, anti-hyperlipidemic and stamina building activity of gram may be due to the presence of pangamic acid and a free nucleotide. It is a stimulant, tonic, aphrodisiac, anthelmintic, and useful in bronchitis and biliousness. It is also useful in leprosy and other skin diseases. The powdered seed is used for dandruff and also used as a face pack.