Campsiandra rosea Poepp. & Endl.
Common Name: Huacapurana
Campsiandra angustifolia is a medium sized tree growing up to 15 metres tall[
The plant is commonly harvested from the wild by local people for medicinal use and as a food[
]. The seed is a staple food of the Pumé Amerindian group in Apure State, Venezuela[
]. There have been claims that the plant is an effective treatment for Lyme Disease, though there is no known research supporting this as of 2006[
S. America - northern Brazil, Peru.
Alongside rivers and streams in the Amazonian rainforest[
]. Forests susceptible to seasonal inundation; at elevations below 400 metres[
The seed has a circular, spongy wing encircling it that enables it to float on the surface of the water[
The seeds are commonly removed from the pod, dried, and then ground into a flour or meal[
]. This flour is commonly referred to as 'chiga flour'[
]. The dried seed is ground into a flour, known as 'chigo flour' and used to make a range of foods[
]. The mature seeds are taken out of their seedpods and then buried for some time in damp soil. After a certain degree of fermentation has set in, they are dug up, washed and then pounded into a flour. The flour (which is rich in starch) is used for making bread and other foods[
The Peruvian common name, huacapurana, can apply to three different closely related species of Amazonian trees that are used interchangeably by local inhabitants: Campsiandra angustifolia, Campsiandra comosa, and Campsiandra laurifolia[
]. (Campsiandra laurifolia is now viewed as a sub-species of Campsiandra comosa, as Campsiandra comosa laurifolia (Benth.)R.S.Cowan[
]. When used in Peruvian herbal medicine, the 'authentic huacapurana' is considered to be Campsiandra angustifolia[
No medical research has been published on this plant, but the bark is believed to contain anthocyanins, cyanogenic glucosides, heterosides, saponins, and tannins[
Huacapurana is a common remedy for malarial fever in the Peruvian Amazon. In the Iquitos region, local herbalists and curanderos recommend a decoction or a tincture of the bark to be taken twice daily in order to reduce the fever related to malaria[
The bark is also recommended for treating other feverish conditions; arthritis and rheumatism; diarrhoea, and as a tonic[
Externally, the pulverized bark is used to treat wounds and to clean sores and ulcers[
The bark is being widely touted as a treatment for Lyme's Disease as well as a host of other microbial issues and diseases. None of these claims can be substantiated by independent third-party documentation or published research, nor even by traditional use[
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