HOME      •      SEARCH      •      EMAIL    •     ABOUT

Family Leguminosae

Lablab purpureus (L.) Sweet

Scientific names Common names 
Dolichos lablab Linn. Baglau (C. Bis.)
Dolichos purpureus (L.) Sweet Batau (Bik., Bis.)
Glycine lucida Blanco Bataw (Tag., Bik., P. Bis.)
Lablab niger Medik. Bulay (C.Bis.)
Lablab purpureus (L.) Sweet Itab (If., Bon,)
Lablab vulgaris Savi Parda (ilk.)
  Parda-atap (ilk.)
  Sibachi, sibatsi(Tag.)
  Banner bean (Engl.)
  Hyacinth bean (Engl.)
  Lablab bean (Engl.)
  Poor man's bean (Engl.)
Lablab purpureus (L.) Sweet is the preferred name. NCBI

Other vernacular names
AMBARIC: Amora-Guaya.
ARABIC: Lablâb, Lablab, Lubiah.
ASSAMESE: Urahi, Urchi, Uri, Urshi.
BENGALI: Rajashimbi.
CHINESE: Bian dou, Huo lian bian dou, Peng pi dou, Teng dou, Yan li dou, Que dou, Pien-tou.
DANISH: Hjelmbønne, Hjelmboenne.
DUTCH: Komak.
FINNISH: Hyasinttipapu.
FRENCH: Dolique D´egypte, Pois Nourrice.
GERMAN: ågyptische Fasel, Faselbohne, Gemeine Lablab, Helmbohne.
ITALIAN: Dolico Egiziano, Fagiolo D´egitto, Fagiolo Del Cairo, Fagiolo Egiziano.
JAPANESE: Fiji Mame, Fuji Mame, Ingen.
MALAY: Kacang Kara, Kara Kara, Kekara, Kerara (Java), Komak (Indonesia).
NEPALESE: Raaj Simii, Simii.
PORTUGUESE: Dólico Do Egipto, Feijão Cutelinho.
RUSSIAN: Lobija.
SINHALESE: Ho-Dhambala, Hodhambala, Kiri-Dambala, Kos-Ata-Dambala, Ratu-Peti-Dambala.
SPANISH: Carmelita, Frijol Caballero.
TAMIL: Avarai, Minni, Motchai, Motchai (Mochai), Tatta-Payaru.
TELUGU: Adavichikkudu, Tellachikkudu.
THAI: Thua Nang, Thua Paep.
TURKISH: Lablab.

Bataw is a smooth, twining, climbing or trailing vine, 4 to 6 meters long, often with smooth, usually purplish stems. Leaves are long stalked, 3-foliate with in equilateral leaflets. Leaflets are entire, ovate, and 7 to 15 centimeters long. Flowers are few to many, white to pink-purple in color, about 2 centimeters long, on erect, long peduncled racemes 15 to 25 centimeters long. Pods are oblong, flattened, purple-margined, flat, and elongated with a prominent beak, about 7 to 12 centimeters long and 2 centimeters wide, containing 3 to 5 seeds.

- Commonly cultivated throughout the settled areas in the Philippines.
- In some regions, naturalized.
- Now pantropic in cultivation.

- Young pods are fairly good source of calcium and iron.
- Seeds yield protein, 23%; fat, 1.8%: ash, 3.5%; hydrocyanic acid, emulsin, allantoinase, and vitamin C1.
- Flowers yielded 6 flavonoids: luteolin (1), cosmosiin (2), leteolin-4^-0-beta-D-glucopyranoside (3), luteolin-7-0-beta-D-glucopyranoside (4), rhoifolin (5), D-mannitol (6). (10)
- Yields protein, sucrose, maltodextrin, stachyose, glucose, raffinose, L-pipecolic acid, phytoagglutinin, phytin, calcium, phosphors, iron, pantothenic acid.
- Pod exudate showed it to consist of homologous fatty acids and their methyl esters—42 in all—from C-11 through C-24, including odd carbon chain compounds. The major constituents of the oil were trans-2-dodecenoic and trans-2-tetradecenoic acids. (12)
- Seed (fresh weight) yield: 334 calories per 100 g; water, 12.1%; Protein 21.5 g; fat 1.2 g; carbohydrate 61.4 g; fiber 6.8 g; ash 3.8 g; minerals: calcium 98 mg; phosphorus 345 mg; iron 3.9 mg. (
- Proximate analysis of seed powder yielded 8.47 ± 0.52% moisture; 3.50 ±0.07 ash, 1.02 ± 0.06%
total fat, 23.95 ± 0.15 % total protein, 1.21 ± 0.16 total dietary fiber, 61.86 ± 0.70% total carbohydrate, and 354.4 ± 2.66 kcal/100 g energy. Major fatty composition (%) showed essential fatty acid linoleic acid 9,50 ± 0.68, linolenic acid 1.95 ± 0.18, palmitic acid 2.96 ± 0.18, stearic acid 0.77 ± 0.04, and oleic acid 1.10 ± 0.06. The major polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFA) present in seeds were essential omega-6 FA linoleic acid and omega-3 linolenic acid. (24)
- Phytochemical screening of methanol extract of aerial parts yielded the presence of saponins, tannins, alkaloids, and flavonoids. (see study below) (28)

- Considered tonic, febrifuge, stomachic, antispasmodic.
- Boiled ripe seeds considered carminative.
- Seeds considered aphrodisiac, anthelmintic, antispasmodic, astringent, febrifuge and stomachic.
- Flowers considered emmenagogue.

- Studies have suggested antimicrobial, antihyperglycemic, hypolipidemic, antinociceptive, anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, cytotoxic, anti-anemic, bioremediative, anti-asthma properties.

- Propagation by seeds.
- Pods are harvested about 4 months after planting.

Toxicity concerns
- Mature, dried seeds are poisonous. Toxicity is attributed to high levels of cyanogenic glucosides. Cooking completelt destroys the toxins: Boiling in two changes of water removes the toxins.

Parts used
Leaves, bean, roots.

Edibility / Nutritional
- Tender pods, seeds and young leaves used as vegetable.
- Tender young seed pods and immature seeds can be eaten raw or cooked. Mature seeds are edible when thoroughly cooked. (see toxicity concerns above)
- Young leaves and pods are good sources of calcium, iron, vitamin C, and other minerals.
- Infusion of leaves used for gonorrhea.
- Poultice of leaves for snake bites.
- Leaves used for menorrhagia and leucorrhea.
- Juice of the leaves mixed with lime, applied to tumors and abscesses.
- Salted juice from the pods used for ear inflammation and sore throat.
- Used as stomachic and antiseptic; given for abdominal pains, diarrhea, and vomiting.

- The Malays make of poultice of the leaves mixed with rice-flowers and tumeric used for eczema.
- In Indo-China, Infusion of leaves for colic; flowers used as emmenagogue.
- Flowers prescribed for menorrhagia and leucorrhea.
- Seeds are considered aphrodisiac; also used to stop nose bleeds.
- In China, boiled ripe seeds used as tonic and carminative.
- Seeds used as febrifuge, stomachic, and antispasmodic.

In Bangladesh, the Santal tribe use wraps of crushed leaves around the throat for tonsillitis. Paste of leaves applied to skin diseases. The Garo tribal community take the seeds orally for low sperm count. In Odisha, India, seed paste is applied to scorpion stings. In Maharashtra, leaf juice is mixed with milk to cure arthritis. In Nepal, leaf juice and seeds used to relieve stomach ache. (28)

Stem Cell Preservation Factor: Stem cell preservation factor FRIL (Flt3 receptor-interacting lectin), a plant lectin extracted from Dolichos lablab was found to preserve hematopoietic stems cells in vitro for a month.(1)
Hypocholesterolemic: Diet supplemented with D. lablab seeds showed a hypocholesterolemic effect. (2)
Cholecystokinin Secretion: A peptide derived from dolicholin, a phaseolin-like protein from D lablab potently stimulated cholecystokinin secretion from enteroendocrine STC-1 cells and suppressed food intake. (3)
Antimicrobial / Antifungal: n-Hexane and chloroform extracts of Dolichos lablab exhibited significant antimicrobial and antifungal activity against B subtilis, S aureus, P aeruginosa, E coli and C albicans. (4)
Antidiabetic / Seeds: Study evaluated the antidiabetic activity of a methanolic extract of D. lablab seeds in STZ-Nicotimamide induced diabetic model. Results showed dose-dependent reduction of blood glucose, total cholesterol, and triglycerides. (7)
Anti-Inflammatory / Antioxidant / Cytotoxicity: Study evaluated the in vitro anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, and cytotoxic properties of methanol extracts of two Bangladesh bean pods, Lablab purpureus L. sweet 'white' and 'purple'. Results showed L. purpureus sweet 'white' and L. purpureus sweet 'purple' have significant anti-inflammatory activity as well as a potential source of natural antioxidants. L. purpureus sweet 'white' had concentration dependent potential cytotoxicity. (8)
Effect on Iron Deficiency: Study evaluated the effectiveness of D. lablab beans extracts against iron deficiency in rats. Results showed a significant increase in hemoglobin level. Standard drug used was ferrous sulfate. (9)
Anti-Diabetic / Leaves: Study of ethanolic extract of leaves of D. lablab produced significant decrease of blood glucose level in alloxan-induced diabetes in rats. (11)
Antihyperglycemic / Anti-Hyperlipidemic: Study evaluated the antihyperglycemic and antihyperlipidemic activity of a methanol extract of D. lablab. Results showed lowering of blood glucose, serum lipids and liver enzymes in diabetic rats. Standard drug was glibenclamide. (13)
Natural Coagulants / Bioremediation: As natural coagulants, Moringa oleifera, Cicer arietinum, and Dolichos lablab significantly improved the removal of turbidity and total coliforms from synthetic raw water. The natural coagulants reduced 89-96% of total coliforms. (14)
Effect in Iron Deficiency Anemia: Study evaluated the effect of Dolichos lablab (bataw) beans extract against iron deficiency in Wistar rats with induced anemia. Results showed a significant increase in hemoglobin level. (15)
Natural Coagulants / Bioremediation of Water Turbidity: Study evaluated the efficacy of extracts of Dolichos lablab, Moringa oleifera and Cicer arietinum as natural coagulants for the clarification of water turbidity. The three test extracts showed significant efficacy in removing turbidity and total coliforms from synthetic raw water. (16)
Galactoase- Specific Lectin / Seeds: Study isolated a galactose-specific lectin from the seeds of D. lablab. Among various sugars tested for inhibitory activity of the lectin, galactoase was found to be a potent inhibitor. Rabbit polyclonal antibody to the purified lectin specifically reacted with the lectin subunits in Western blot analysis. (17)
Stem Cell Preservation: A plant lectin, stem cell preservation factor FRIL (Flt3 receptor-interacting lectin), was extracted from D. lablab and found to preserve hematopoietic stem cells in vitro. FRIL can also preserve neural progenitor cells in vitro by inhibiting both cell proliferation and differentiation. (18)
Dolichin / Antifungal / Antiviral: An antifungal protein was modified from the seeds of Dolichos lablab. The protein, designated dolichin, exhibited antifungal activity against Fusarium oxysporum, Rhizoctonia solani, and Coprinus comatus. Dolichin was capable of inhibiting HIV reverse transcriptase and alpha- and beta-glucosidases which are glycohydrolases implicated i HIV infection. (19)
Natural Coagulant / Antifungal / Antiviral: Study using locally available natural coagulants—Moringa oleifera, Cicer arietinum, Dolichos lablab—showed significant improvement in removing turbidity and total coiforms from synthetic raw water. (
Anti-Asthma: Dolichos lablab has been reported to cause smooth muscle relaxant activity. (
• Hepatorenal Toxicity / Raw Seeds: Study investigated the influence of three varieties of seeds on hepatorenal antioxidant status in male Wistar rats. Results showed consumption of raw seeds induced hepatorenal toxicity in rats via induction of oxidative stress. There was significant elevationof serum marker enzymes along with increases in BUN and creatinine. (25)
Antihyperglycemic / Antinociceptive / Beans: Study evaluated the antihyperglycemic and antinociceptive properties of a methanol extract of beans using OGTT and acetic-acid induced pain model in mice, respectively. Results showed dose-dependent and significant reductions in blood glucose levels in glucose-loaded mice. In antinociceptive testing, the extract reduced the number of abdominal constrictions. (27)
Analgesic / Acute Toxicity Testing / Aerial Parts: Study evaluated the analgesic properties of aerial parts of L. purpureus. Acute toxicity testing of crude extract did not show any toxicity in mice at highest tested level of 3000 mg/kbw. Testing for analgesic activity showed dose-dependent and significant reductions in number of abdominal constrictions induced by IP administration of acetic acid. (28)
Anti-Obesity / CS-IVA / Seeds: Previous study reported Dolichos lablab extract inhibited high-fat diet induced increases in body weight and body fat mass and ameliorated increases in body weight. This study evaluated the molecular mechanism for the inhibitory effect of DLL extract or Chikusetsusaponin IVa (CS-IVa) isolated from the seed extract. Study showed both DLL-Ex and CS-IVa have potent inhibitory activity on adipocyte differentiation. Results suggest a potential for DLL and CS-IVa as a functional food material to treat obesity. (29)
Hematological Benefit / Potential Iron Source: Study evaluated the effectiveness of D. lablab beans extract against iron deficiency in rats. Anemia was induced by tail clipping. Results showed significant increase in hemoglobin level from 11.33 to 14.33 while hematocrit increased from 34.0 to 43.0 after 14 days of treatment. (

Cultivated for market produce.

Updated November 2019 / October 2017 / December 2014

Photos © Godofredo Stuart / StuartXchange
OTHER IMAGE SOURCE / Leguminosae - Dolichos lablab / La flore et la pomone françaises, ou histoire et figures en couleur, des fleurs et des fruits de France ou naturalisés sur le sol français by Jean Henri Jaume Saint-Hilaire. Paris, the author, 1832, volume 5, plate 441 / MEEMELINK
OTHER IMAGE SOURCE / Seeds - Dolichos purpureus / Ken Fern / Creative Commons / Useful Tropical Plants

Additional Sources and Suggested Readings
Legume lectin FRIL preserves neural progenitor cells in suspension culture in vitro / Stem Cells and Regenerative Medicine Lab, Beijing Institute of Transfusion Medicine, Beijing 100850, China.
Hypocholesterolemic effect of diet supplemented with Indian bean (Dolichos lablab L. var lignosus) seeds / Vadde Ramakrishna et al /Journal: Nutrition & Food Science / 2007 Volume: 37 Issue: 6 Page: 452 - 456 / ISSN: 0034-6659 / DOI: 10.1108/00346650710838117
Peptides derived from dolicholin, a phaseolin-like protein in country beans (Dolichos lablab), potently stimulate cholecystokinin secretion from enteroendocrine STC-1 cells / Journal of agricultural and food chemistry (J Agric Food Chem) / 2007-Oct; vol 55 (issue 22) : pp 8980-6

Antimicrobial Investigation of Different Extracts of Dolichos lablab beans / Akash P Dahake et al / Research Journ of Pharmacognosy and Phytochemistry • Vol 1, Issue 2, Sept-Oct, 2009
Effect of Different Processing Methods, on Nutrient Composition, Antinutrional Factors, and in vitro Protein Digestibility of Dolichos Lablab Bean / Lablab purpuresus (L) Sweet / Magdi A. Osman / Pakistan Journal of Nutrition 6 (4): 299-303, 2007
Lablab purpureus (L.) Sweet (accepted name) / Chinese names / Catalogue of Life, China
Anti diabetic activity of Dolichos lablab (seeds) in Streptozotocin- Nicotinamide induced diabetic rats. / Krishnaveni kante and Challa Srinivas Reddy / Hygeia.J.D.Med.vol.5 (1), April 2013
ANTI-INFLAMMATORY, ANTIOXIDANT AND CYTOTOXICITY POTENTIAL OF METHANOLIC EXTRACT OF TWO BANGLADESHI BEAN LABLAB PURPUREUS (L.) SWEET WHITE AND PURPLE / Mohammad Abdul Motalib Momin, Md. Razibul Habib*, Md. Rakibul Hasan, Jannatun Nayeem, Nizam Uddin, Md. Sohel Rana / IJPSR, 2012; 3(3): pp 776-781
In vivo study on the effect of dolichos lablab (bataw) beans extract against Iron-deficiency in rattusnorvergicus (wistar rat). / S A Somulung et al / Cebu Doctors' University
Chemical study on the flower of Dolichos lablab L
. / Liang Qiaoyu, Ding Lingsheng / Journal of China Pharmaceutical University [1996, 27(4):205-207]
Screening for Anti-Diabetic Activity of the Ethanolic Extract of Dolichos Lablab Leaves / Ranjit Singh* and Sankar C / PhTechMed, Vol 1/Issue 5/Sept-Oct 2012
Chemcal Constituents of Dolichos lablab (Feld Bean) Pod Exudate / Albert A. Fernandes and Gopalpur Nagendrappa / J. Agric. Food Chem., 1979, 27 (4), pp 795–798 / DOI: 10.1021/jf60224a031
Antihyperglycemic and antihyperlipidaemic activities of Dolichos Lablab seed extract on streptozotocin - nicotinamide induced diabetic Rats / Umamahesh Balekari / Pharmacognosy, Phytochemistry & Natural-Products-2013
Comparison of Efficiency of some Natural Coagulants-Bioremediation
/ Sonal Choubey, S.K.Rajput, K. N. Bapat / International Journal of Emerging Technology and Advanced Engineering, Volume 2, Issue 10, October 2012
In vivo study on the effect of dolichos lablab (bataw) beans extract against Iron-deficiency in rattusnorvergicus (wistar rat). / S A. Somulung et al / Cebu Doctor's University / Herdin Record #: NCR-OLFU-14041514340642
Comparison of Efficiency of some Natural Coagulants-Bioremediation / Sonal Choubey, S.K.Rajput, K.N.Bapat / International Journal of Emerging Technology and Advanced Engineering Website: Volume 2, Issue 10, October 2012
Affinity purification, physicochemical and immunological characterization of a galactose-specific lectin from the seeds of Dolichos lablab (Indian lablab beans). / Latha VL, Rao RN, Nadimpalli SK / Protein Expr Purif. 2006 Feb;45(2):296-306. Epub 2005 Jul 18.
Legume lectin FRIL preserves neural progenitor cells in suspension culture in vitro. / Yao H, Xie X, Li Y, Wang D, Han S, Shi S, Nan X, Bai C, Wang Y, Pei X / Clin Dev Immunol. 2008;2008:531317. doi: 10.1155/2008/531317
Dolichin, a ew chitinase-like antifungal protein isolated from field beans (Dolichos lablab) / Ye XY, Wang H X, Ng T B / Biochem Biophys Res Commun. 2000 Mar 5;269(1):155-9.
Lablab purpureus - (L.)Sweet. / Plants For A Future
Comparison of Efficiency of some Natural Coagulants-Bioremediation / Sonal Choubey, S.K.Rajput / K.N.Bapat / International Journal of Emerging Technology and Advanced Engineering, Volume 2, Issue 10, October 2012
SOME IMPORTANT MEDICINAL PLANTS USED IN THE TREATMENT OF ASTHMA - A REVIEW. / Sheela Kumar, V. K. Agnihotri, Sunita Thakur, Anita Verma, R. C. Saxena and Kapil K. Soni* / International Journal of Pharma Sciences and Research, Vol 3 No 10 Oct 2012  [Soni Kapil K, Uikey J & RC Saxena (2006).Smooth muscles relaxant activity of herbal drug isolated from Dolichos lablab. Research Hunt 1(1):60-4.]
Lablab purpureus--Hyacinth bean / Synonyms / EOL
Proximate composition and fatty acid analysis of Lablab purpureus (L.) legume seed: implicates to both protein and essential fatty acid supplementation / Shahdat Hossain,  Rashed Ahmed, Sujan Bhowmick,  Abdullah Al Mamun, and Michio Hashimoto / Springerplus. 2016; 5(1) / doi:  10.1186/s40064-016-3587-1
LABLAB PURPUREUS SEEDS DISRUPT HEPATIC AND RENAL ANTIOXIDANT STATUS IN MALE RATS / Soetan, K. O., Adedara, I. A., Farombi, E. O. / FOLIA VETERINARIA, 60, 2: pp 11-19, 2016 / DOI: 10.1515/FV-2016-0012
Lablab purpureus / Useful Tropical Plants
AN INITIAL REPORT ON THE ANTIHYPERGLYCEMIC AND ANTINOCICEPTIVE POTENTIAL OF LABLAB PURPUREUS BEANS / Mousumi Ahmed, Ummay Kawchur Trisha, Shupti Rani Shaha, Amit Kumar Dey, Mohammed Rahmatullah / World Journal of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Scienc, 2015; 4(10): pp 95-105
ANALGESIC POTENTIAL AND PHYTOCHEMICAL SCREENING OF LABLAB PURPUREUS AERIAL PARTS / Jajiratul Jannat Proma, Mohammad Omar Faruque, Shahnaz Rahman, A.B.M. Anwarul Bashar, Mohammed Rahmatullah / World Journal of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences, 3(10): pp 165-173
Anti-Obesity Activities of Chikusetsusaponin IVa and Dolichos lablab L. Seeds / Jun Yin, Chang-Seob Seo, In Hteok Hwang, Min Won Lee and Kwang Hoon Song / Nutrients 2018, 10(9) / https://doi.org/10.3390/nu10091221
In vivo study on the effect of dolichos lablab(bataw) beans extract against Iron-deficiency in rattusnorvergicus (wistar rat). / S A Somulong, M A Lucero, M S Niverca, K A Dalin, R de Jesus, E D Domingo / Fatima University Research Journal, March 2012; Issue 4: pp 112-115

It is not uncommon for links on studies/sources to change. Copying and pasting the information on the search window or using the DOI (if available) will often redirect to the new link page. (Citing and Using a (DOI) Digital Object Identifier)

HOME      •      SEARCH      •      EMAIL