Citron Fruit: Citrus medica Uses, Dose, Research, Side Effects

Citron fruit looks like a big lemon, with very think skin with very less inner pulp content. Its fruit peel, seed, pulp etc are used in Ayurvedic treatment. It is widely used for treating abdominal colic, digestive disorders, piles etc. 

Botanical name- Citrus medica Linn.
Family- Rutaceae
Citron fruit

Names in different languages:
Hindi name- बिजौरा  Bijoura,  बड़ा नीबु bara neebu, पूरक purak, तुरन्ज turanj, वेतस vetas 
English name- Citron, wild lemon
Bengali name- Begpur
Kannada name – ಮಾದಳ maadala
Telugu name- Madiphalam, Nimmakaya నిమ్మకాయ, మాతులుంగము matulungamu
Tamil name- Kadara- Narathai, எலுமிச்சை elumiccai, கொம்மட்டிமாதுளை kommatti-matulai
Malayalam name –  Ganapathi Narakam, ചെറുനാരകം cerunaarakam
Konkani name – मौळिंग mauling
Assamese name – Namutenga / kaji tenga,  Jora tenga
Bengali name – জম্বির jambeera, টাবা taba
Gujarati name – તુરંજ turanj
Manipuri name – হৈজাঙ heijang
Marathi name – महाळुंग mahalunga

Citron (Citrus medica)

Sanskrit Synonyms –
Matulunga, Madiphalam,
Beejahva, Beejapoorna, Phalapooraka,
Kesara, Kesaramla – Safron, orangish color
Jantughna – Useful in intestinal worm infestation
Danturastvacha – Having thick fruit skin
Ruchaka, Rochanaphala – Fruit improves appetite, useful in anorexia
Citrus medica

Citrus medica chemical composition:
Citric acid, Sulphuric acid, glucose, Abscisic Acid, Abscisin II, Limonin, Limonene, Limocitrol, Rutin etc

Peel contains citrol, citrine,

Classical categorization
Charaka –

Hrudya – group of herbs that act as cardiac tonic, congenial for heart
Chardinigrahana – group of herbs useful in vomiting

Susruta- Phala varga – Group of fruits
Vagbhata- Phala varga
Bhavaprakasha – Amradi Phalavarga, Panchamla (five sour fruits – Amlavetasa, Vrukshamla, Brihat Jambeera, Nimbuka, Beejapoora)
Kaiyadeva Nighantu – Pancha Pallava – group of five fresh leaf sprouts (Amra, Jambu, Kapittha, Beejapura, Bilva)
Raja Nighantu, Dhanvantari nighantu – Amradi Varga

Citron fruit medicinal properties:
Rasa (taste) – Amla (sour), Madhura – sweet
Guna- Laghu, Snigdha,
Vipaka- Amla – Undergoes sour taste conversion after digestion
Veerya – Ushna – Hot potency
Effect on Tridosha – Balances Vata and Kapha Dosha
Part used- Fruit, root
Dosage-  Fruit juice 10-20 ml

Citron fruits are used in preparing a special drink preparation called Shadava. (Kaiyadeva Nighantu)

citrus medica uses

Citron uses:
Ripe fruit –
Deepana – improves digestion strength
Laghu – light to digest
Kanta Shodhana – Cleanses throat
Hrudaya Shodhana – Cleanses and detoxifies heart
Jihva Shodhana – Cleanses and detoxifies tongue
Hrudya – acts as cardiac tonic, congenial for heart
Jarana – improves digestion strength
Varnakara – Improves skin tone and complexion
Pushtikara – nutritious, improves nourishment
Balakara – improves strength and immunity

Indicated in –
Raktapitta –Bleeding disorders such as nasal bleeding, heavy periods, etc
Shwasa – asthma and chronic respiratory disorders
Kasa – cough, cold
Aruchi – anorexia
Trushna – excessive thirst
Shoola – abdominal colic pain
Ajeerna – indigestion
Vibandha – Constipation
Kaphashwasa – cough with sputum
Mandagni – low digestion strength
Arochaka – anorexia
Shopha  – inflammation
Shoola – abdominal colic pain
Arti – pain

Skin / peel of the ripe citron fruit –
Tikta – bitter
Durjara – Hard to digest
Indicated in  –
Krumi – worm infestation
Balances Vata and Kapha Dosha

Stamen – Keshara 
Vatartighna – Indicated in pain and abdominal colic due to Vata / bloating
Katu – Pungent
Ushna – Hot
Jathara Gadahara – indicated in abdominal disorders

Beeja – Seed –
Deepya – improves digestion
Amla – Sour
Tikta – bitter
Indicated in –
Kaphaja arsha – Piles with big mass and itching
Shotha – Swelling, inflammation

Unripe fruit (Baala phala) or Semi ripe (Madhya) citron fruit –
Increases / vitiates Pitta, Vata, Kapha and Rakta

केसरं मातुलुङ्गस्य लघु शेषमतोऽन्यथा||१५४||
रोचनो दीपनो हृद्यः सुगन्धिस्त्वग्विवर्जितः|
kesaraṃ mātuluṅgasya laghu śeṣamato’nyathā||154||
rocano dīpano hṛdyaḥ sugandhistvagvivarjitaḥ| – Charaka Sutrasthana 27/154

The filaments of Matulunga – Citron fruit – Citrus Citrus limon are useful in colic pain, anorexia, constipation, impairment of digestion, alcoholisms, hiccough, dyspnoea, cough, vomiting, disorders relating to faces and such other diseases as arise from the vitiated Vata as well as Kapha.

Juice is used to relieve the pain of bee stings, used in treating scurvy.

Pharmacognosy, phytochemistry

In Vitro study on diabetes, Alzheimer’s disease

Ayurvedic medicines with Citron as ingredient:
Madiphala Rasayana – For gastritis, vomiting, indigestion
Dhatri Rasayan – 
used for rejuvenation and to improve strength and immunity.
Narasimha Rasayana – 
for the treatment of weakness, weight gain, hair growth and rejuvenation.
Dasamoola Rasayanam – for many acute and chronic respiratory diseases.
Kshara Thailam – an herbal oil, used in the treatment of tinnitus, ear ache, hearing loss, worm infestation etc.

Side effects:
Unripe fruits are unhealthy for consumption.
Very sour fruits are contra indicated in High Pitta conditions such as bleeding disorders (heavy periods), nasal bleeding, burning sensation, gastritis etc.
Like all the It should not be consumed along with milk.

How to consume? Similar to lemon
Usage in sweating treatment:
Its fruits and leaves are used for inducing sweating, as part of a treatment, called Jambeera Pindasweda, Naranga Kizhi

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  1. sumathi r. says:

    Very useful article about a common, household fruit. We in tamilnadu use this a lot as pickle, both salted and with chilli. Elders at home used to encourage us to have this with buttermilk rice, saying that it would aid digestion. Is it also good for pittam?? Thanks

  2. Jean-Pierre says:

    excellent! Congratulation!

  3. V.Sridhar murthy says:

    Excellent article. Very informative.

  4. Lakkannaprakash says:

    Dear sir, Some body told me to have this fruit for gastric problem its right please confirm after your guidelines i will use this waiting for the replay.

  5. Abdul Musaveer says:

    Yes, indeed Citrus Medica or Turanj is a very useful fruit. I am trying to get its seedlings to grow at home & am unable to get it in any nurseries in Mysore. Can you please help?

  6. In our garden one madipala plant which give 10-20 fruits but lack of knowledge we are not used tbem .all fruits are wasted pls any body guide me the way of use them in our house ourselves.

  7. Dalecoolbaugh says:

    No side effects listed, useless ###########

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