Wood apple (Kaith or Feronia limonida) is a fruit native to dry areas of India and Ceylon. It is also called elephant apple, curd or monkey fruit. The fruit is almost colorless, round shaped, about 10cm in diameter and with hard pericarp. The pulp is brown, powdery or granular, with a distinctive smell and could be acidic or mildly sweet, and it contains many small, white seeds.
Wood apple fruit is rich in natural acids, such as oxalic, tannic and malic citric acid. It is a source of calcium, phosphorus, iron and vitamins A, B and C. Leaves of the plant contain essential oil, used as astringent and the wood apple gum is used as an ointment, to calm irritated skin.
The wood apple is known to help in many different disorders:The fruit is good for any digestive problem. It cures intestinal infections and digestive disorders, and ease dysenthery, ulcers, hemorrhoids, constipation or diarrhea.Wood apple can also be used to treat bowel problems in childrenIt might be beneficial for women. Some say it could prevent any post labor problems, and even breast and uterus cancers. Wood apple is used to cure sagging breasts and sterility, too. Beneficial for the men, wood apple has aphrodisiac properties. It is efficient in treatments of: involuntary or premature ejaculation, impotency or spermatorrhea. The fruit heals urticaria – allergic skin problem.Wood apple is rich in vitamins C and A, and therefore it could be used to treat scurvy or liver problems. It is also believed that this fruit is good to purify the blood.People having kidney problems should use wood apple every day.Leaves of the plant are beneficial in preventing colds and sore throat or cough.The gum from the tree and the branches is said to have healing properties for diabetics.The root of the wood apple is used to treat ear problems.In Ayurveda therapy wood apple plant is used to treat snakebites.Wood apple chutney or sherbet treats hiccups.The fruit contains about 140 calories in just 100g, and it could be used as energy booster.
To treat diarrhea or piles, use mashed pulp of the fruit, without the seeds. Mix the pulp with cardamom, cumin seeds and honey and use in digestive problems.
For digestive problems in children, make the juice out of the leaves and add milk and some sugar. You could also use 2 to 4g of powdered wood apple leaves.