Tsaang gubat is an erect, very branched shrub growing up to 1 to
4 m high. Leaves are in clusters on short branches, obovate to oblong-obovate, 3 to 6 centimeters long, entire
or somewhat toothed or lobed near the apex and pointed at the base,
short stalked and rough on the upper surface. Flowers are white, small,
axillary, solitary, 2 or 4 on a common stalk, borne in inflorescences shorter than the leaves. Calyx -lobes re green, somewhat hairy, and linear, about 5 to 6 millimeters long. Corolla is white, 5 millimeters long, and divided into oblong lobes. Fruit is a drupe, rounded, yellow when ripe,
4 to 5 milimeters in diameter, fleshy, with a 4-seeded stone, fleshy on the outer part, and stony inside.
- Easily found from the Batan Islands and nothern Luzon to Palawan and Mindanao, in most or all islands and provinces, in thickets and
secondary forests at low and medium altitudes.
- Also occurs in India to southern China, Taiwan, and Malaya.
- Phytochemical screening yielded alkaloids, flavonoids, glycosides, tannins, terpenoids, and saponins.
- Major constituents of leaves yielded an intractable mixture of triterpenes, namely a-amyrin, b-amyrin, and baurenol.
- Considered analgesic, anti-diabetic, anti-inflammatory, anti-microbial, antispasmodic and anti-mutagenic.
Tea made from the leaves.
- Leaf decoction or infusion
for abdominal colic, cough, diarrhea and dysentery.
- Root decoction used as an antidote for vegetable poisoning.
- For diarrhea: Boil 8 tbsp of chopped leaves in 2 glasses of water for
15 minutes; strain and cool. Use 1/4 of the decoction every 2 or 3 hours.
Decoction has also been used as a dental mouthwash.
- Decoction of leaves used as disinfectant wash after childbirth.
- In Sri Lanka, used for diabetes: 50 gm of fresh leaves or roots are chopped; 100 cc of water is added, and 120 cc of juice is extracted by squeezing, and given once or twice daily.
• Being promoted by the Department of Health (DOH) as an antispasmodic;
for stomach/abdominal pains.
• One of a few herbs recently registered with the Bureau of Foods and
Drugs as medicines
• Antiallergic Activity: Tsaang gubat, together with
Lagundi and Sambong, were studied for
possible anti-allergic subtances to counter the histamine release from
mast cells that cause type-1 reactions. From tsaang-gubat, rosmarinic
acid and microphyllone were isolated.
/ Antinocicpetive / Anti-inflammatory: Study of CR leaves yielded an intractable
mixture of triterpenes– a-amyrin, ß-amyrin and baurenol
and a wide range of bioactivity. The mixture showed analgesic, anti-inflammatory,
anti-diarrheal and antibacterial activities.
• Antimutagen: An antimutagenic principle was extracted from the leaves of C retusa with ethyl alcohol.
• Triterpene Bioactivities/ Analgesic / Anti-inflammatory / Anti-diarrheal / Antimicrobial: Study OF Carmona retusa leaves yielded an intractable mixture of triterpenes, a-amyrin (43.7%), ß-amyrin (24.9%) and baurenol (31.4%).
The mixture exhibited analgesic activity (51%), some anti-inflammatory activity (20%), anti-diarrheal activity (29%), and moderate antimicrobial activity against S aureus, C albicans and T mentagrophytes.
• Anti-Tumor: Carmona retusa leaf extracts were tested for anticancer property and results showed it can be used as an anticancer agent.
• Antiallergic Dimeric Prenylbenzoquinones: A methanol extract showed inhibitory activity on exocytosis in antigen-stimulated rat basophils.
Commercial: Tablets and tea bags