The "leaf of life" is a plant that is botanically known as Bryophyllum calycinum. Other names for the leaf of life include life plant and airplant. The plant, which is a member of the Crassulaceae family, is an herb that appears commonly throughout India, but also is found in other parts of the world, such as Pakistan, Nepal, Brazil and the United States. Various medicinal uses are associated with the leaf of life.
Ayurvedic medicine, which is also known as Ayurveda, is a type of traditional healing science that takes a holistic approach in promoting healthy and long lifespans. In Ayurveda, the leaf of life plant's leaves are used for the treatment of various health afflictions, such as menorrhagia (unusually heavy and extended menstrual periods), throwing up of blood and acute inflammation. Consumption of tea that is made from the leaf of life's leaves is also believed, in folk medicine, to increase energy levels and overall senses of well-being and relaxation.
In various cultures around the world, the leaf of life plant has been used for ethnomedical purposes. Jamaica, where the plant grows wild, is one example of a place where the leaf of life has been used as an herbal remedy to treat common health conditions such as influenza, the common cold, chest colds, high blood pressure, headaches, fever, bronchitis, swelling and excessive coughing.
The leaf of life plant also offers traditional applications for the treatment of medical problems that can be more severe, such as kidney failure, shortness of breath and asthma.