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Here comes tobacco free herbal pan masala

The Central Institute for Subtropical Horticulture (CISH) has come up with an alternative to pan masala that causes a number of health problems due to its tobacco content.

lucknow Updated: May 13, 2019 12:12 IST
Rajeev Mullick
Rajeev Mullick
Hindustan Times, Lucknow
Central Institute for Subtropical Horticulture,Tobacco content,Anti oxidants

The Central Institute for Subtropical Horticulture (CISH) has come up with an alternative to pan masala that causes a number of health problems due to its tobacco content.

“Known as ‘Herbal Chew’, the new product will give you the feeling and taste of pan masala but it is free from tobacco and areca-nut (supari),” claimed CISH scientists who developed it.

“Herbal Chew contains vitamin C-rich ‘aonla’ and dill (soya seeds) based formulation that is an anti-oxidant. It also gives a relaxing effect and helps in curing insomnia besides reducing substantially the urge of having tobacco. People who smoke bidi too have given it up after taking the Herbal Chew powder,” said Neelima Garg, principal scientist and head, division of post-harvest technology, CISH.

“The product has been found acceptable in taste and effective as a healthy alternative to pan masala when tested with more than a hundred persons addicted to pan masala,” she said.

“It helps to get rid of bad breath, improves the mood and in digestion. Being rich in anti-oxidants, Herbal Chew eliminates radicals from the body,” said Shailendra Rajan, director, CISH.

Rajan said addicts of pan masala face difficulty in quitting tobacco-made products. They get different symptoms like intense cravings, increased appetite, irritability and depressed mood after withdrawal of masala. “So, there was a need to provide an alternative for quitting chewing tobacco and pan masala,” he said.

Speaking on the ingredients of Herbal Chew, Garg said: “Volatile oils of dill can help neutralize particular types of carcinogens. Drinking dill tea is recommended for those suffering from sleeplessness. Dill helps in digestion by relieving gastric problem. It is also used to make light tea for babies to ease colic, help in sleep and get rid of hiccups.”

“Aonla, another ingredient of the product, is rich vitamin C. It has medicinal value that ais documented in the ayurvedic system. It has cooling, diuretic and laxative properties,” she said.

Rajan said the product would be commercialised soon.

First Published: May 13, 2019 12:12 IST