Amrit Pal Singh


Bala is important medicinal plant of Ayurvedic system of medicine. Previous works have reported presence of ephedrine in Bala although it has not been reported in other varieties of Bala. Extracts of Sida cordifolia standardized to ephedrine are available in the Indian as well as international market. In western world ephedrine once upon a time was widely used for weight loss but recently it has been banned due to reported hepatotoxicity (injurious to the liver). Bala and its varieties including atibala (Sida rhombifolia L.) are exclusively used in Ayurvedic composite formulations. Owing to presence of ephedrine and norpesudoephedrine (PPA) in extracts of Bala the plant should be subjected to extensive pharmacological investigations (cardiovascular and CNS effects).