Scientific names     
Raphanus sativus Linn.     
Common names
Labanos (Tag.)
Rabanos (C. Bis., Span.)
Lai-fu-tzu Ts-ao (Chin.)
Radish (Engl.)

Labanos is a coarse, annual crop plant. Roots are fleshy, pungent and variable in size and form. Leaves are roughly hairy, the lower ones lyrate. Flowers are variable, about 1.5 centimeters long, usually white or lilac, with purple veins, sepals erect, lateral ones saccate at the base. Pod is inhehiscent, lanceolate, cylindrical, and 2 to 2.6 centimeters in length, and terminates in a long beak. Seeds are separated by pith.

- Widely cultivated in the Philippines at all altitudes.

Parts utilized
  • Whole plant.
  • When seeds are ripe, harvest the whole plant, sun-dry, remove the seeds and dry again. Crush on use. Roots can also be sun-dried for use.


· Considered anthelmintic, antifungal, antibacterial, antiscorbutic, diuretic, laxative, tonic, carminative, corrective, stomachic, cholagogue, lithotriptic, emmenagogue.
· The juice of the fresh root is considered powerfully antiscorbutic.
· Roots considered carminative and corrective.
· Flowers considered becnic and cholagogue.
· Seeds considered diuretic, laxative, stimulant, and lithotriptic.
· In Iranian traditional medicine, seeds are considered diuretic carminative, antifever, antitussive and gastric tonic. Study yielded ten isothiocyanates, seven aliphatic hydrocarbons and some volatile substances.


• Phytochemical study yielded triterpenes, alkaloids, flavonoids, tannins, saponin and coumarins.
Study for volatile constituents yielded 10 isothicyanates, seven aliphatic hydrocarbons and some other volatile substances.
• Root yields raphanol, rettichol, volatile oil, methylmercaptan, vitamins B1, sinapin and oxydase.
• Seeds yield fatty oil (30%), ash (3.5%), volatile oil, sulphuric acid, erucic acid and C8H15NS2.


Edibility / Nutrition

Leaves, flowers, roots, and seeds are edible.
A popular, common, and inexpensive vegetable, eaten raw or cooked.
Young leaves are also eaten raw or cooked.
Excellent source of iron and good source of calcium; also a source of vitamin B.

· For diarrhea: boil the fresh leaves to concentrated decoction and drink.
· Juice of leaves increases the flow of urine and promotes bowel movements.
· Juice of fresh leaves also used as laxative; also for dropsy and general anasarca.
· Root considered stimulant; also used for piles and stomach pains.
· Juice used to expel wind from the bowels.
· Juice of fresh roots considered antiscorbutic.
· Roots are crushed and applied locally as dressing or poultice for burns, scalds, ecchymoses, or fetid or smelly feet.
· Decoction of root used for fevers.
· Decoction of roots used to bring out the rash in eruptive fevers.
· Coughs: Decoction of flowers; or, boil 6 to 15 gms seed preparation to decoction and drink.
· Seeds promote the flow of urine, bowel movements, and menstruation.
· Seeds used for cancer of the stomach.
· For patients with edema, bloated belly (ascites), pale yellowish face, and oliguria: used dried root preparation with citrus rind preparation (5:1 proportion). Boil to a concentrated decoction and drink.

· Repellent


• Histaminergic / Spasmolytic: Pharmacological basis for the gut stimulatory activity of Raphanus sativus leaves: A study on the crude extracxt of RS leaves showed the presence of a histaminergic component plus a weak spasmolytic factor supporting its traditional use for constipation.

Toxicity Report: Severe Toxic Hepatitis Provoked by Squeezed Black Radish (Raphanus Sativus) Juice - Case Report: Cited in phytotherapy literature as a plant with hepatoprotective properties, this reports a severe toxic hepatitis from use of black radish extract to dissolve bile duct stone.

Hepatoprotective: (1) Studies on Raphanus sativus as Hepatoprotective Agents (Thesis): Results showed the ethanolic extract of RS contain hepatoprotective constituents. (2) Study of crude powder of Raphanus sativus leaves reduced the risk of liver damage by paracetamol.

Antiurolithiatic Activity / Diuretic: Study of aqueous extract of the bark of RS on rats showed a significant decrease in the weight of stones. Study also showed an increase in 24 hour urine volume compared to control.

• Water Phenol Decontamination: Decontamination of Water Polluted with Phenol Using Raphanus sativus Root: Plant materials have been used in decontamination of water polluted with phenolic compounds. The study used RS roots (root juice and pieces). Results showed good phenol removal from aqueous solutions with cut R sativus root and juice.

Antioxidant / Lipid Peroxidation Inhibition: Study of methanol extract of RS showed inhibition of lipid peroxidation in vivo and in vitro, providing protection by strengthening antioxidants like glutathione and catalase. Results suggest inclusion of the plant in every day diet may be beneficial.

Phytochemicals / Toxicity Studyt / Hepatoprotective Activity: Study of showed carbon tetrachloride induced hepatotoxicity was reduced by the plant as showed by inhibition of increased liver enzyme activities and bilirubin concentration together with histopath changes. Toxicity study showed no adverse effect on livers. Phytochemical studies yielded triterpenes, alklaoids, flavanoids, tannins, saponins and coumarins.

Phytochemicals / Gastroprotective: Study of the freshly squeezed radish juice for its anti-gastric ulcer activity in experimental models showed it possessed gastroprotective potential related to mucus secretion stimulation and an increase in nonproteinsulfhydryl (NP-SH) concentration, probably due to prostaglandin-inducing abilities mediated through antioxidant activity. Phytochemicals study yielded flavonoids, anthocyanins and sufurated constituents.

Antioxidant / Choleretic: Study of extract from radish sprouts in rats showed antioxidant properties and significantly induced bile flow.

Anti-Diabetic: Study showed that the sprouts of Japanese radish has the potential to alleviate hyperglycemia and may serve i the primary prevention of diabetes mellitus.


Commercial cultivation; ubiquitous in market places. 

Source: stuartxchange

Additional Sources and Suggested Readings

1)Pharmacological basis for the gut stimulatory activity of Raphanus sativus leaves / Anwarul Hassan Gilani and M Nabeel Ghayur / Journal of Ethnopharmacology, Volume 95, Issues 2-3, December 2004, Pages 169-172 / doi:10.1016/j.jep.2004.06.038

(2)Severe Toxic Hepatitis Provoked by Squeezed Black Radish (Raphanus Sativus) Juice - Case Report

(3)Studies on Raphanus sativus as Hepatoprotective Agents / Rukhsana Anwar B. Pharma., r. Ph. / Thesis submitted to the University of Punjab

(4)Antiurolithiatic activity of Raphanus sativus aqueous extract on rats / R Vargas et al / Journal of Ethnopharmacology, Volume 68, Issues 1-3, 15 December 1999, Pages 335-338 / doi:10.1016/S0378-8741(99)00105-1

(5)  Decontamination of Water Polluted with Phenol Using Raphanus sativus Root / Farzaneh Naghibi et al / Iranian Journal of Pharmaceutical Research (2003) 29-32

(6)Inhibitory Response of Raphanus sativus on Lipid Peroxidation in Albino Rats / P. Chaturvedi / Oxford Journals Medicine Evidence-based Compl. and Alt. MedicineVolume 5, Number 1Pp. 55-59 / eCAM 2008 5(1):55-59; doi:10.1093/ecam/nel077

(7)  Protective Effect of Raphanus sativus Against Carbon Tetrachloride Induced Hepatotoxicity in Wistar Albino Rats / H.H.SH. Mohammed, Afaf. I. Abelgasim et al / Jurn of Pharm and Toxicology 3 (4):272-278, 2008

(8)Gastroprotective Effect of Radish (RS) on Experimental Models / Algasoumi, Saleh et al / Farmacia, Vol 56 (2), 2008

(9)Volatile Constituents of Raphanus sativus L. var. niger Seeds / Journal of Essential Oil Research: JEOR, Jul/Aug 2005 by Afsharypuor, Suleiman, Balam, Maryam Hoseiny

(10)Antioxidant and Choleretic Properties of Raphanus sativus L. Sprout (Kaiware Daikon) Extract / Jessica Barillari, Rinaldo Cervellati et al / J. Agric. Food Chem., 2006, 54 (26), pp 9773–9778 / DOI: 10.1021/jf061838u

(11)Studies of Raphanus sativus as Hepato Protective Agent / Rukhsana Anwar and Mubasher Ahmad / Journal of Medical Sciences, 2006 | Vol 6 | Issue: 4 | Page No.: 662-665 / DOI: 10.3923/jms.2006.662.665

(12)Volatile Constituents of Raphanus sativus L. var. niger Seeds / Journal of Essential Oil Research: JEOR, Jul/Aug 2005 by Afsharypuor, Suleiman, Balam, Maryam Hoseiny

(13)Effect of Japanese radish (Raphanus sativus) sprout (Kaiware-daikon) on carbohydrate and lipid metabolisms in normal and streptozotocin-induced diabetic rats / Hironobu Taniguchi et al / Phytotherapy Research, Volume 20 Issue 4, Pages 274 - 278