Pink Saturday ~ The Macahiya

Mimosa pudica Linn.
Mimosa asperata Blanco

Makahiya is found throughout the Philippines and is found wild everywhere on Mt. Banahaw. It is not cultivated, and is considered a weed. The Tagalog name, and suggested by the scientific name, means “sensitive.” The reason it is given this name is that upon human touch the leaves contract and appear to wilt, but then open up again a short time later. The leaflets fold together in the early evening and reopens at sunrise. It is called bashful or sensitive because the leaflets fold together on touching, warming and shaking. The phenomenon is called seismonastic movement due to a rapid change in turgor pressure and changes in membrane permeability in the pulvini cells in the leaf regions with rapid movement of calcium ions. At night, the leaves also fold and bend, termed nyctonastic movements (reaction to absence of light). Makahiya is known as a diuretic, and is considered alterant and anti asthmatic. It is used for urinary complaints, and is useful in diseases arising from corrupt blood and bile.

Constituents and properties
Expectorant, antiasthmatic.
Root is aphrodisiac.
Entire plant considered an analgesic, antispasmodic, alterant and antiasthmatic.
Mild sedative and antidepressant.
Seed contains mimosine, a non-protein alpha-amino acid known to cause hair loss and depressed growth in mammals (an unlikely event in humans as this will require unusually large doses).

2 pinky-swear friends shared a thought or two...:

Pacey said...

I remember playing with this plant and I didn't know it has some healing properties. Thanks for the info.

Tracy said...

Thanks for the info., interesting. Funny that's it's called a week but is pretty and has so many useful properties