(Linn.) Schott.

Synonym > C. antiquorum Schott.

Family > Araceae.

Habitat > Cultivated throughout India.

English > Taro, EdibleYam.

Ayurvedic > Pindaaluka, Aaluki.

Siddha/Tamil > Chaembu, Shaeppam- kizhangu.

Folk > Arvi, Ghuiyaa.

Action > Juice from petiole—styptic, rubefacient. Juice of corn—used in alopaecia.

The leaves contain flavones, api- genin and luteolin, also anthocyanins. Leaves cause severe irritation in mouth. Cooked leaves are a source of dietary fibre for diabetics helping in lowering post-prandial blood glucose level. A significant increase in total lipids, total cholesterol and triglyceride levels was observed in hypercholesterolaemic rats when fed with dried leaf powder.

The pressed juice of the petioles is used as an astringent and styptic. All parts of the plant show an acridity. The acridity is removed by boiling and by addition of baking soda.

From the tubers two dihydroxys- terols, besides beta-sitosterol and stig- masterol, have been isolated. Five novel aliphatic compounds have been reported. Trypsin inhibitors are isolated from the tubers.

The total amino acids recorded in the tubers range from 1380 to 2397 mg/ 100 g. The lysine concentration was relatively low. Besides starch, the tubers contain natural polysaccharides with 56% neutral sugars and 40% anionic components. Steamed corms contain 30% starch and 3% sugar.

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