The cassia tora plant is mainly found in south East Asia and the south west of the pacific and has been recognized as a very important weed. It is a herbaceous annual herb, growing approximately 12 to 35 inches tall. The leaves grow approximately 4.5 centimeters long and stems have a distinct smell when young. The plant has yellow flowers which eventually produce pods that appear flattened, with a length of 15 centimeters, in a sickle shape and hence the plant got the common name sickle pod. With a lot of experimentation and research, it has been shown that the seeds, roots and leaves have very many beneficial attributes to basic health care, nutritional values and industrial purposes.
Manufacture of Cassia PowderCassia gum powder is manufactured directly from the cassia tora seeds. These seeds are de-husked and degermed through milling and screening of the endosperm to obtain the cassia gum powder. The refined cassia gum powder is in turn used for various industrial purposes such as thickening, water retention agent, emulsifier, texturizing agent in cheese and in emulsification activities. This process has created numerous employment opportunities to various industry players such as aggregators, middle men, processors and even exporters. Medical and Nutritional Impacts The cassia tora seeds have various applications related to human health and thus have huge impact on the community. These include;
- Improvement of digestion: quickening the digestive process, avoiding intestinal dryness, cooling the colon, flatulence in kids and preventing constipation.
- Antimicrobial properties: Research has shown that cassia tora seeds are able to inhibit the growth of microorganisms such as fungi which can cause serious skin infections. Mixing of the cassia seed powder with drinking water also helps in the curing of various kinds of skin infections.