Chalta (Dillenia indica Linn.): an untouched fruit crop
Dillenia indica Linn. (syn. P. lanigerum; chalta in Bangla; Family Dilleniaceae) is an evergreen large shrub or small to medium-sized tree that grows all over the NE states, especially Tripura and Bangladesh. Named after Johann Jacob Dillenius, a German botanist, Dillenia is a genus of about 100 species of flowering plants in tropical and subtropical trees of southern Asia, Australasia, and the Indian Ocean Islands. However, up to now, only eight Dillenia species have been reported to be used traditionally for different medical purposes including treatment of cancerous growth. Medicinal properties of the fruit juices of D. indica are manifold, as a cooling beverage to treat fever and to relieve fatigue. Although mainly a source of food for elephants and monkeys, the ripped fruits are taken orally to increase appetite and overcome weakness, as laxative and medication for abdominal pain. Native communities in Mizoram, India, have used the fruits of the plant as a remedy for jaundice. All the plant parts viz., leaves, bark, fruit, fruit peel, etc. all have proven medicinal properties against most of the common ailments including anti-cancer and anti-microbial properties. Some of the major compounds with medicinal and nutritive value are lupeol, betulinaldehyde, betulinic acid and stigmasterol.
Surendranath, R., Nashipudi, R. and Harita, K. (2019). Chalta (Dillenia indica Linn.): an untouched fruit crop. Acta Hortic. 1241, 65-68
underexploited, NE states, medicinal, multipurpose and nutritive