Long pepper or Piper longum:
Pippali (long pepper or piper longum) is basically a type of herb, known for its medicinal properties. Pippali is sweet in taste when green and sharp or pungent when dry. Roots and fruits of this plant are generally used for culinary as well as medicinal purposes. The fruits of plant Piper longum are known as long Pippali or Pipri and the roots as Piparamul or Pippala Mool. Both are used for medicinal purpose in Ayurveda. Pippali balances vata and kapha dosha.
Piper longum is a flowering vine in the family of ‘piperaceae’ which needs support for its proper growth. It is known for its fruits which is dried and used as a spice. This plant requires hot and humid climate. Fruits of this plant are oval shaped and grow in early winters. These fruits are orange and yellowish in color.
Long pepper is a native of the Indo-Malayan region. First reference of piper longum comes from ancient Indian textbooks of Ayurveda, where its medicinal and dietary uses are described in detail. It is mostly found growing wild in the tropical rain forests of India. It also grows in the small area of Khasi hills of Meghalaya, Assam, the lower hills of West Bengal and Andaman & Nicobar Islands as well. Kerala, Karnataka, Tamil Nadu, Andhra Pradesh, Eastern Uttar Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh and Maharashtra are some other regions.
Malaysia, Singapore, Indonesia, Sri Lanka and other regions of South-east Asia are countries other than India which cultivate piper longum.
Properties of Piper Longum:
Fruits and roots of piper longum are full of nutrients that are essential for the better functioning of the entire body system. Pippali or long pepper has anti-fungal, anti-amoebic, antimicrobial, anti-asthmatic, anti-diabetic and antioxidant properties. It is also known for its analgesic, anti-inflammatory, anticancer, anti-depressant and anti-ulcerative properties.
Long pepper has strong antibacterial qualities. It protects the body from bacterial infections. The roots of piper longum are anti-inflammatory, analgesic, carminative, laxative, and expectorant. They are hot and sweet in potency and are used in digestive weakness and excessive phlegm inside body
How to Use Pippali:
Pippali (long pepper) is used both for culinary as well as medicinal purposes. There are two types of long pepper- wet and dry. Wet long pepper is generally used in making dishes. You can simply cut them into pieces and use as necessary. You can use it in the place of black pepper. Dry long pepper is used generally in powder form; this form is longer lasting than the wet long pepper. Though this form is not so strong or hot as wet form, but it is easy to use. You can use it in vegetables, soup etc. However, it is mostly popular for its medicinal uses.
Piper longum is a hot and strong spice; 0.5 – 1 gm powder of piper longum is enough in a day. Whereas, piper longum root (piparamul) is comparatively mild; you can take 3 – 5 gm of root powder in a day.
Moreover, you can take pippali in decoction (kadha) form. For this purpose, boil 2 tablespoon of piparamul powder in a glass of water till it reduces to half. Then filter it and consume in equal doses- twice a day.
Health Benefits of Pippali (Long pepper):
The Piper longum fruit or pippali has been used in traditional medicines, as well as in Ayurvedic medicines. It is most commonly used to treat respiratory problems such as- chronic bronchitis, asthma, cough, infections and allergies. Moreover, it is also good to treat constipation, diarrhoea, stomach-ache, paralysis of the tongue, cholera, chronic malaria, viral fever, diseases of the spleen, gonorrhoea, and tumours.
1. Pippali for Cold and Cough:
a. Pippali with Dry ginger:
Long Pepper (Pippali)Powder 0.5 gm
Dry Ginger (Sonth)Powder ¼ tsp
Turmeric Powder ¼ tsp
Simply, mix all the above ingredients in ¼ cup of water and add 1 tsp of honey also. Then, drink it in the morning and repeat the same again in the evening.
b. Pippali with Black Pepper:
Piper Longum Root 10 gm
Long Pepper 5 gm
Black Pepper 10 gm
Dry Ginger 10 gm
After collecting all the ingredients, grind them well to make fine powder and keep into an airtight jar. Then, ingest 2 gm of this powder with honey twice a day for curing cold.
c. Pippali with Ghee for Cold:
Alternatively, you can fry long pepper in clarified butter (ghee in Hindi) and grind to make powder. Consume ¼ tsp of this powder twice a day regularly for 2-3 days. It is an amazing remedy of cold.
Or, you can give 1 gm pippali powder with honey twice a day. Likewise, you can use 3 gm piper longum root powder instead of long pepper powder. It removes mucus or phlegm completely.
d. Piper Longum Root Tea:
Piper longum root can be taken in form of tea too for cold, cough and chest congestion. For making the tea, boil the powder (3 gm) in a cup of water and add some sugar and milk in it. Now, you can sip it like tea.
e. Long Pepper with Baheda for Chronic Cough:
Piper Longum root 10 gm
Long Pepper 5 gm
Baheda (Terminalia Bellerica) 10 gm
Dry Ginger 10 gm
Grind all the ingredients to make fine powder and keep into a jar. Now ingest 3 gm powder thrice a day to cure chronic cough (khansi).
2. Piper Longum for Asthma:
Long pepper or pippali is very good to detoxify lungs. It helps in removing mucus accumulated in the respiratory tract. Pippali effectively treats different respiratory disorders like asthma, bronchitis, sinus, allergic congestion etc. You can get relief in asthma by consuming 1 gm pippali powder daily with honey.
Alternatively, you can apply other remedies also, such as-
a. Pippali with Dry ginger for Asthma:
Long Pepper 10 gm
Black Pepper (Kali mirch) 10 gm
Dry Ginger (Sonth) 10 gm
Collect all the three ingredients and grind them to make fine powder. Now, ingest 2 gm of this powder with honey 2-3 times in a day for curing asthma.
b. Decoction of Long pepper for Asthma:
Another remedy for curing asthma is the decoction of pippali. Boil 2 gm of long pepper powder in 4 cup of water till it reduces to half. Then, drink this decoction after sieving within a day in small doses. That means, divide the decoction (kadha) in equal 4-5 doses and consume with every 2-3 hours interval. This home remedy is very good to cure breathlessness due to asthma.
c. Long Pepper & Jaggery:
For treating other respiratory problems like- sinus, bronchitis, allergies, ingest 0.5 gm of pippali or long pepper powder with honey or jaggery (gur) twice a day.
3. Long Pepper for Indigestion:
Pippali is a powerful stimulant for the digestive system as it cleanses lining of intestines. Piper
longum has piperine which helps to fight certain parasites that can damage digestive system. Piperine defends it by forming the lining of the intestines. Besides digestion, it is also used to improve appetite and to treat heartburn, intestinal gas, stomach-ache and diarrhea. It helps to improve appetite too. Therefore, include long pepper powder in your food to keep you healthy and fit. You can use it while cooking or consuming fruits on regular basis.
4. Good for Gastric Problem:
Piper longum or long pepper is very good for those people, who have gas formation and abdominal distension with the intake of milk. By boiling a small piece of pippali along with milk, you can get relief in stomach gas formation.
Moreover, you can also take piper longum root powder for gastric problem (for details, refer to ‘Remedies of Gastric Problem’).
5. Long pepper Cures Acidity:
Pippali or piper longum is a good traditional medicine of acid reflux, if it is used with black chebulic myrobalan or harad (refer “Harad with piper longum or pippali” & ‘Remedies for acute hyperacidity’).
6. Good to treat Insomnia:
Pippali is very good in sleep disorder or insomnia. It works as a sedative. Its root (piparamul) is used to treat insomnia ( for details, refer- ‘Natural Remedies of Insomnia’). Simply, consume 3 – 5 gm of piparamul powder with jaggery (double quantity) twice a day.
For sleeplessness, you should take piper longum root powder with cold water, twice a day.
7. Removes Inflammation:
Long pepper (pippali) has anti inflammatory properties. It removes swelling from excessive accumulation of watery fluid in cells or tissues due to Oedema disease. Simply, take pippali (0.5-1 gm in a day) mixing with milk. Besides it, you can prepare the paste of pippali (with water) and apply on the affected area.
8. Good for Headache:
Long pepper is used as a folk medicine of headache since thousands of years back because of its anti-bacterial properties. To control headache, you have to make paste of piper longum root powder with water and apply on forehead.
Or you can ingest its powder (3 gm) with warm water or warm milk or ghee. When it is used with ghee, its hot and dried properties are balanced and it became beneficial in curing headache due to ‘vata’ or gas formation.
9. Pippali for curing Fever:
Long pepper is a good natural medicine of fever. For this remedy, collect the following ingredients and boil in a glass of water like tea. Then, sieve it into a cup and sip like tea.
Long Pepper Powder 1 gm
Basil Leaves 5-7 Leaves
Turmeric Powder ½ tsp
Crushed Ginger 5 gm
Alternatively, you can use chutney or paste of piparamul powder (3 gm), ghee (2 gm) and honey (5 gm). Simply mix all the three ingredients properly and lick thrice in a day to cure fever.
10. Treats Sciatica and Hemiplegia:
Pippali (piper longum or long pepper) is good for treating Hemiplegia (paralysis of one side of the body). In case of Hemiplegia, take 1 gm of pippali powder with ghee (2-3 gm) twice a day.
Similarly, to treat sciatica pain you can use the same remedy.
11. Pippali to control Hiccups:
For controlling hiccups, you can give long pepper powder (1 gm) with honey or water.
Or you can try it with liquorice (mulethi). Simply, collect the following ingredients in given ratio-
Long Pepper 10 gm
Liquorice (Mulethi) 10 gm
Rock Sugar (Mishri) 20 gm
Lemon (Nimbu) 1 piece
Mix all the three ingredients in a glass of water and add few drops of lemon juice in it. Consume this water to control hiccups. This remedy is also useful to treat vomiting. It also clears chest congestion by clearing mucus.
12. Treats Toothache:
Due to its analgesic properties, long pepper is also good to reduce toothache. Try following remedies for toothache–
a. Collect equal amount of pippali, rock salt, turmeric powder and mustard oil. Mix all them well and make a paste. Now apply this paste on the affected tooth for curing toothache.
b. Another remedy of toothache is pippali with dry ginger and other ingredients. Firstly collect-
Long Pepper 10 gm
Dry ginger (sonth) 10 gm
Rock Salt (sendha namak) 10 gm
Mace (javitri) 10 gm
Honey (shahad) 1 tbsp
Grind all the ingredients and sieve it to make fine powder and keep the powder into a jar. Then, put a little amount of powder on your palm and add some of honey to make paste. Now, rub your teeth with this paste, toothache will be subsided.
13. Pippali for Heart Health:
Pippali or long pepper strengthens the heart muscle and improve blood circulation. It helps to normalize the cholesterol level and blood pressure too by regulating blood circulation.
Grind equal amount of piparamul (piper longum root) with green cardamom (elaichi) and keep into a jar. Now, ingest 3 gm of this powder mixing with clarified butter (ghee), thrice a day. It reduces cholesterol.
Or simply, ingest 1 gm pippali powder with 1 tsp of honey, twice a day; it also cures heart disease.
14. Good for Constipation:
Long pepper is good for constipation by regulating bowel movement. If you have complain of passing stool several times in a day, take 1 gm pippali powder and 1 gm powder of harad (black chebulic myrobalan). Add 1 tsp of honey in it and ingest twice a day.
15. Pippali for curing Piles:
There are three home remedies of pippali (long pepper) for curing piles –
a. Long Pepper with Curd:
For curing hemorrhoids, consume 1 gm pippali powder and a pinch of turmeric with ½ cup of fresh yogurt daily in the morning (after breakfast) and night (after dinner).
b. Long Pepper with Cumin Seeds:
To cure piles, take ¼ tsp pippali powder with ½ tsp of roasted cumin seeds (jeera) powder and mix them in a glass of buttermilk with a pinch of rock salt. Drink this buttermilk on an empty stomach in the morning; it cures piles in few days completely.
c. Long Pepper with Bitter Apple Root:
Pippali with bitter apple root (Indrayan in Hindi) is also very good to cure piles. Take pippali and bitter apple (Indrayan or gadtumba) root in equal quantity and grind them to make fine powder. Then, make very small pills of this powder and dry them under sunlight. Now, have a pill in every morning with lukewarm water for 7 days.
16. Treats Menstrual Cramps:
Pippali or long pepper is used as a folk medicine for menstrual cramps problem since long back. It helps to treat menstrual problems like- Amenorrhea and Dismenorrhea.
For treating menstrual cramps, take 2 tbsp of fresh aloe vera juice and 0.5 gm pippali powder mixing with ½ cup of warm water. Take it thrice a day.
17. Pippali for Low Libido:
Long pepper increases sperm mobility and sexual potency of both men and women. It is also good to treat impotence, low libido, and premature ejaculation. For improving low libido (men), take pippali (0.5 gm) with ½ tsp Ashwagandha powder and 1 tsp ghee and consume with ¼ cup of water. Take it thrice a day before meals.
Similarly, use pippali (0.5 gm) with Shatavari or asparagus (½ tsp) and ghee (1 tsp) and consume with ¼ cup of water for improving low libido of women. Take it thrice a day before meals.
18. After Delivery Recovery:
Pippali is good for post delivery nourishment. In India, the Ayurvedic system recommends the mother care for 42 days after the baby is born. In other words, mother is given support to rest, sleep and get nourishment after baby’s birth. Pippali or piper longum and its root (piparamul) is given to the mother after delivery with other herbs so that the uterus retains its normal size.
19. Cures Stomach Cramps:
Long pepper can control stomach cramps (Irritable bowel syndrome) too. Take harad (black chebulic myrobalan and pippali (1 gm each) and consume with warm water twice a day. With a regular use of few days, stomach-ache, cramps and diarrhoea (atisar) will be cured completely.
20. Liver Disease and Spleen:
Liver problems are very common in the present scenario. Long pepper has components that are known to protect the liver. It can make sure that the liver toxicity is always managed, and it also prevents jaundice from occurring. Piper longum fruit is effective in curing jaundice. Boil one crushed long pepper with a glass of warm milk and consume after sieving to cure jaundice.
For liver enlargement and spleen (tilli), make decoction (kadha) of pippali (1 gm) and piparamul (5 gm). Boil both the powders in a glass of water for few minutes. Then filter it and drink. With a regular use of 4-7 weeks, liver will be reduced.
Or simply take piper longum root powder (4 gm) or long pepper powder (1 gm) with honey regularly two times in a day. Continue this remedy for 4-7 weeks; it helps in reducing liver enlargement.
21. Pippali for Obesity:
Over weight is the most common problem at present; it becomes a disease now. Long pepper is highly effective in curing obesity. It is an aromatic and hot pepper spice that helps to clean up the toxins from cell walls, tissues and arteries; in this way, it also helps to reduce excess body weight.
To reduce excess body weight, you can use pippali (2 gm) with honey (5 gm) thrice a day. It basically reduces the fat in the body and also gets rid of fatty toxins.
22. Cures Joint Pain And Arthritis:
Piper longum is one of the important part of folk medicines of curing arthritis, especially Gout and Rheumatoid Arthritis. It strengthens bones and supports skeletal integrity. If you have arthritis, knee pain or any joint pain, collect some roots of old piper longum plant and dry them under sunlight. Then grind these roots to make fine powder and keep into a jar. Ingest 3-5 gm of this powder with warm milk or water to cure any type of joint or body ache. This is an excellent remedy that gives relief within few hours.
For better results, you can have this with bitter apple (Indrayan) root powder. Mix both bitter apple root and piper longum root powder in equal amount. Have 1 tsp of this powder with a glass of warm water in the morning for 7 days.
23. Pippali for Skin Diseases:
Long pepper helps in curing skin related problems. Whenever you have any type of skin problem, prepare paste of pippali powder with water and apply on the affected area (twice in a day).
Or give a gentle massage over the skin with long pepper oil; it is also quite effective in curing skin problem.
In addition to, you can use pippali to clear any type of skin rashes also. For this, collect –
Long Pepper Powder 0.5 gm
Aloevera juice(ghritkumari) 2 tbsp
Turmeric powder (haldi) ¼ tsp
Mix all the ingredients in half cup of warm water and consume thrice in a day with meals.
24. Good to control Diabetes:
Long pepper is a basic medicine of diabetes in Ayurveda to control blood sugar level. It helps to regulate the rate at which glucose is released from the blood. As per findings of some studies, pippali also increases the Insulin production within the body.
Piper longum root or piparamul has anti-diabetic and anti-hyperlipidemic properties. It is proved from some studies that the plant extract is capable of managing hyperglycemia and complications of diabetes (1).
25. Cures Loose Motion:
Pippali or long pepper has anti bacterial properties. You can cure loose motion or diarrhoea with piper longum or long pepper. Take ¼ tsp of pippali powder mixing with a glass of buttermilk twice a day. It is very effective remedy of loose motion that can cure even chronic dysentery.
Side Effects of Long Pepper:
Though long pepper is very useful herb, but it has some side effects too. Some of these are –
1. It is hot and pungent in nature, so you should not use it for a longer period.
2. Because of hot in nature, it can cause allergic reaction to the people with allergic history. Therefore better to consult doctor before use.
4. Pregnant and breastfeeding mothers better to avoid its usage because there is not much researches in this field, whether it is harmful or not.
5. People who have inflammation tendency or have swelling on body throughout the day, should not use it.
All the remedies given above are for the purpose of knowledge only; it is neither to be construed as a diagnosis or treatment, nor to be considered as a substitute for medical care from a doctor. Better to consult your doctor before trying these natural remedies. Results are not guaranteed; it may vary from person to person.