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Akash Bail (Cassytha Filiformis)

Akash Bail also known as Love Vine, is a very distinctive and obligate parasitic vine in the family Lauraceae. Parasitic plants take nutrients and water from other plants by extracting them from their host through root-like structures thrust into the stems, branches, and sometimes leaves. Akash Bail is a twining vine with an orange to pale green stem. The flowers of cuscuta are small, about 2 mm in diameter, and are borne singly along the stem. The fruit is a dry, spherical, thin-shelled structure containing several small black seeds. The flowers of C. filiformis are borne in small panicles. The fruit is small, fleshy, and berry-like, bearing a single, spherical seed. Stems of Cassytha filiformis are twining, pale green to orange, thread-like, smooth or velvety. Leaves are reduced to scales about 1 mm long, easiest seen near tips of stems. Flowers are borne in spikes or rarely singly, very tiny, and look like small white balloons sometimes solitary less than 2 mm. There are six tepals, each 0.1-2.0 mm long. Fruit is ovoid a drupe about 7 mm in diameter spherical, size of a large pea, smooth, green or orange-red on maturing, rarely white, commonly drying black.

Akash bail is found throughout the tropical world. It is commonly found plant in India which is spread across the varied landscapes of the Indian soil from semi - arid plains to the hill tops up to a height of 3000 m

Properties of Akash Bail

Akash Bail (especially the stem) contains a series of alkaloids belonging to the aporphine type, biosynthetically derived from the amino acid phenylalanine. These include: actinodaphnine, N-methylactinodaphnine, cassameridine, cassamedine, cathafiline, cathaformine, cassyformine, cassyfiline, cassythidine, filiformine (oxyaporphine type), isoboldine, laurotetanin, lysicamine, ocoteine and predicentrine. Further phytochemical investigations also revealed the presence of the lignan (+)-diasyringaresinol, together with positive reactions for tannins, saponins and leucanthocyanins.

Different Names

  •   English Name: False Dodder, Woe Vine, Love Vine, air creeper, devil's gut, dodder-laurel, green thread creeper, moss creeper, princess hair, Sita's yarn.
  •   Hindi Name: Amarbeli
  •   Sanskrit Name: Akasavalli.
  •   Bengali Name : Akasbel, Swarnalatha.
  •   Urdu Name: Akas bel
  •   Philippines Name: Kauad-kauad, Kauad-kawaran, Kauat-kauat (Tagalog), Kawat-kawat (Sulu), Malabohok (Bisayas)

Classification of Akash Bail

  •   Kingdom: Plantae
  •   Phylum: Spermatophyta
  •   Subphylum: Angiospermae
  •   Class: Dicotyledonae
  •   Order: Laurales
  •   Family: Lauraceae
  •   Genus: Cassytha
  •   Species: Cassytha filiformis

Habitat of Akash Bail

Thickets or sparse forests on mountain slopes from near sea level to elevations of 1,600 metres in southern China. Occurs especially on the seashore and areas immediately behind the shore, often forming a dense blanket over thickets.

Uses & Effectiveness

Akash Bail has various medicinal properties as it is an anti-inflammatory and analgesic. Amar Bel is used to treat the following ailments:

  •   Blood purifier
  •   Eye disorders
  •   Hair loss
  •   Hyper acidity
  •   Skin disorders
  •   Dysuria
  •   Arthritis
  •   Joint pains
  •   Urinary tract infection
  •   Worm infestation
  •   The herb is used in paste form to treat wounds, skin ailments, inflammation and pain. It is also used in powder form to improve digestion and get relief from pain in arthritic condition.


This herb should not be used with heparin or wafarin because of its potent anti-platelet activating factor property. It is also contraindicated in patients already on a1-adrenoceptor antagonists.

Bio Energetics of Akash Bail

Hindi Sanskrit English
Rasa Kashaya Taste Tikta
Guna Laghu Properties Pichhil
Veerya Sheet Potency Cold
Vipaka Katu Metabolism Katu (Pungent)

Ayurvedic Applications

Anaha, Arsa, Grdhrasi, Gandamala, Gulma, Jvara, Kandu, Kaphavataja roga , Krmi, Kustha, Sotha, Prameha, Raktavikara, Tvak roga, Udara , Udavarta,Vrana.