Healthy Living

Kencur – Kaempferia galanga L – Precious medicinal herbs

Kencur is also known as aromatic ginger, sand ginger, cutcherry… with the scientific name Kaempferia galanga L., belonging to the Zingiberaceae family. For Southeast Asians, this is a precious medicine.

Overview of kencur

General knowledge about the kencur

Kencur is a herbaceous plant, long-lived. The rhizome consists of many small, ovoid tubers, growing in succession, with many horizontal veins.

The leaves are ovate, nearly round, spreading close to the ground, the base is narrow to a short, wide, grooved stalk. The upper surface of the leaf is glossy, the lower surface is slightly hairy, the margin is thin red, both sides have many ring-shaped dots.

Inflorescence sessile, hidden in leaf sheaths, with about 6–12 flowers arranged in wheels, white with purple spots in the center.

The whole plant, especially the rhizome, has a hot aroma and taste.

Fruit season is around May-July.

It is a light-loving, moisture-loving and drought-tolerant plant. Annually, the plant grows young leaves in April–May, grows rapidly during the summer and then flowers. Flowers bloom every day in the early morning and then die at 10 o’clock. Entire aboveground parts wither in winter.

Kencur has the ability to produce strong branches. From a tuber (rhizome piece) after a year has formed a large cluster.


Parts used by the kencur

People often use the rhizome to make medicine, collected in winter and spring. After bringing home, wash and dry. Note, do not dry with charcoal.

Chemical composition kencur

The dried rhizome contains about 2.4–3.9% essential oil. The main ingredients are p-methoxycinamic acid, ethyl cinamate and p-methoxy ethylcinamate.

In addition, rhizomes also have compounds n-pentadecan, A3-caren, camphen, O-methoxy ethylcinamate, borneol, cinamic aldehyde, cineol, kaempferol, kaempferid…

The effect and use of kencur

What are the uses of kencur?

Conducting research on the pharmacological effects of kencur has shown the following effects:

– Pain relief

– Anti-inflammatory

– Antipyretic

– Cytotoxicity to cervical carcinoma cells and amoebic killing

– Kill maggots, bugs

– Make sweat, cause excitement, relieve spasms


According to ancient documents, this medicinal plant has a spicy, warm nature, referred to as the mind, spleen, and taste business. The drug has a moderate effect, spreading welding, excepting low, eating food, and eliminating toxic gases.

According to the people’s experience, kencur is used to treat chest and stomach pain, cold, diarrhea, medicine to treat taste, help digestion, treat indigestion, stomachache, cold, cough, vomiting, asthma.

Using alcohol soaked alone or in combination with some other herbs such as blood sage, millennium, star anise, cinnamon chi, camphor to massage, cure pain, numbness or suck to treat toothache (no be drunk).

In addition, kencur oils are also used to make perfumes, cosmetics, and flavorings in foods. Instantaneous powder has the effect of protecting clothes, preventing moth bites.

In the Philippines, kencur immediately cures indigestion and malaria. Leaves are crushed and heated, applied to treat low back pain.

In Malaysia, the rhizome is used to treat high blood pressure, ulcers, and asthma. Leaves and rhizomes chewed and sucked to treat coughs and sore throats. The rhizome is used exclusively to treat colds.

Dosage of the kencur

What is the usual dose of kencur?

3–6g/day can be used in the form of kencur, powder, pill or fixative.

Some remedies from kencur

What folk remedies are used from kencur?

1. Cure indigestion, stomach pain, neuralgia

2g kencur, 1g cinnamon. These two flavors are ground into a fine powder, mixed well, divided into 3 times a day.

2. Cure cold chest pain

Kencur, cloves, dong quai, licorice each taste equal. All of them are ground into powder, mixed with the paste to make a pellet of corn kernels. Take 10 pills each time.


Note, be careful when using kencur

When using kencur, what should you pay attention to?

In order to use kencur safely and effectively, you should consult in advance with reputable doctors and oriental medicine doctors. Certain other medications, supplements or herbs that you are taking may cause unwanted interactions with this medicine.

During use, if you notice any unusual symptoms, please stop using it and notify your doctor immediately.

The level of safety of the kencur

Note, people who are lewd, have fire rage, and are anemic should not drink local kencur.

There is insufficient information on the use of this medicinal plant during pregnancy and lactation. You should consult your doctor or physician before taking any herbal medicine.

Possible interactions with kencur

Dandelion may interact with certain medications, supplements or other herbs you are taking. To ensure safety and effectiveness when using, you should consult your doctor and physician before you want to take any medicinal herbs.

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