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Family Fabaceae
Balatong
MUNGO
Phaseolus aureus Roxb.
MONGO BEAN
Lu dou

Scientific names  Common names  
Phaseolus aureus Roxb. Balatong (Tag., Ibn., If., Ilk.)
Phaseolus mungo Blanco  Mongo (Tag.)
Phaseolus radiatus Merr. Mungo (Tag., Bis.)
Vigna radiata (L.) Wilczek Mungos (Tag.)
  Mongo bean (Engl.) 
  Mung bean (Engl.)
  Green gram (Engl.)
  Lu dou (Chin.)
Balatong is a shared common name for (1) Mungo, Phaseolus aureus, mongo bean, green gram (2) Soya, utau, Glycine max, soybean.

Botany
Mungo is an erect, annual herb branching at the base, more or less clothed with spreading, brownish hairs. Leaves are long-petioled, compound, with three leaflets which are ovate and entire, broad based with pointed tips, 8 to 15 centimeters long, the lateral ones being inequilateral. Flowers are yellow, about 1 centimeter long, arranged near the end of the short stalks. Pods are linear, hairy, spreading, 6 to 8 centimeters long, about 6 millimeters wide, and covered with scattered, long, brownish hairs. Seeds are 4 to 6 millimeters in length.

Distribution
- Cultivated throughout the Philippines.
- Not a native of the Archipelago.
- Scarcely naturalized.
- Also occurs in India to China and Malaya, in cultivation.

Constituents
- Seeds are high in carbohydrate (>45%) and protein (>21%); fair source of calcium, iron, vitamins A and B. deficient in vitamin C.
- Sprouts are a good source of vitamin B.

- Raw green gram contains trypsin inhibitor which is destroyed by cooking.

Properties
Seeds are considered tonic, aperient, antiscorbutic.

Distribution
Cultivated throughout the Philippines.

Uses
Culinary
Extensively used in Philippine cuisine, in salads or boiled, in soups or stews.
In Chinese cooking, bean sprouts is considered a yin or cooling food.
Folkloric
- In the Philippines decoction of seeds used as diuretic in cases of beriberi.
- The seeds, boiled or raw, used in maturative poultices.
- Mongo extract used for its protective and curative effects in polyneuritis galinarum.
- Roots considered narcotic, used by the Santals for bone pains.
- In India, seeds used internally and externally for paralysis, rheumatism and a variety of nervous system ailments.
- Seed considered hot and tonic, used for coughs, hemorrhoids and affections of the liver.
- Powdered beans used to promote suppuration.
- In large quantities, used as aperient.
- Poultice useful for checking the secretion of milk and reducing distention of the mammary glands.
- Seeds used in anorexia.

- Powdered beans rubbed into scarifications over tumors and abscesses to promote suppuration.
- In Indo-China seeds used as antiscorbutic and diuretic.

Studies
Hypotensive: The study showed all the extracts were hypotensive and contained bioactive proteinaceous substances and stimulated uriine flow. Combinations of the extracts showed subtractive or additive effects.
Anti-irritation: Clinical studies on the anti-irritation effects of mung bean (Phaseolus aureus) extract in cosmetics: The study of extracts applied to irritant-containing cosmetic formulations showed considerable anti-irritation efficacy and suggesting a potential use for cosmetic products.
Cardiovascular Effects: Previous studies have shown the hypotensive effect of green beans, common rue and kelp. In this study, green beans and kelp showed negative chronotropic effects, while rue showed positive chronotropic and inotropic effects. A combination of all three showed subtractive effects on the decrease of atrial rate. The three plants interacted to modify their various cardiovascular effects.
Hypolipidemic / Antiatherogenic: (1) Changes in serum lipids in normal and diabetic guinea pigs on feeding Phaseolus aureus (Green gram): Study showed green gram feeding showed lowering of both free and esterified fractions of cholesterol, significant loweriing of triglycerides and decreased the total cholesterol / phospholipid ration indicating its antiatherogenic nature. (2) (2) Hypercholesterolemic rats supplemented with Isoflavones biochanin A and formononetin) from three pulses, including P mungo, and p-coumaric acid showed hypolipidemic activity.
Anti-Irritation Effects / Cosmetics / Vitexin / Isovitexin: Ethanolic extract isolated vitexin and isovitexin, previously suspected of antioxidant and anti-inflammatory activities. Study confirmed anti-irritation effects and suggests that the mung bean extract could be applied to cosmetic products.


Availability
Wild and cultivated.


Last Update September 2011

Photos © Godofredo Stuart / StuartXchange

Additional Sources and Suggested Readings
(1)
The hypotensive effects of green bean (Phaseolus aureus), common rue (Ruta graveolens) and kelp (Laminaria japonica) in rats / K. W. Chiu, A. Y. L. Fung
(2)
Clinical studies on the anti-irritation effects of mung bean (Phaseolus aureus) extract in cosmetics / Jo B K et al / SÖFW-journal • 2006, vol. 132, no1-2, [Note(s): 8-16 /
(3)
The cardiovascular effects of green beans (Phaseolus aureus), common rue (Ruta graveolens), and kelp (Laminaria japonica) in rats
/ K W Chiu and A Y L Fung /General Pharmacology: The Vascular System Volume 29, Issue 5, November 1997, Pages 859-862 / doi:10.1016/S0306-3623(97)00001-3
(4)
Changes in serum lipids in normal and diabetic guinea pigs on feeding Phaseolus aureus (Green gram)
/ Anurag Srivastav , L. D. Joshi, and S. P. Singh / Indian Journal of Clinical Biochemistry • Volume 4, Number 1 / January, 1989 / DOI 10.1007/BF02867652
(5)
Clinical studies on the anti-irritation effects of mung bean (Phaseolus aureus) extract in cosmetics / Jo B K, Ahn G W et al / SÖFW-journal, 2006, vol. 132, no1-2, [Note(s): 8-16

(6)
Studies on protein quality of green gram (Phaseolus aureus) / Khader, V (V); Rao, S V (SV) / Plant foods for human nutrition / 1996-Feb; vol 49 (issue 2) : pp 127-32

(7)
Isoflavones and hypercholesterolemia in rats / 10.1007/BF02533528 /


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