Acanthus is a species of plant Blepharis edulis Pers. in the family Acanthaceae. It is found in India, Pakistan and Iran as well as Egypt. It is a small plant, covered in soft, grey hairs. It has many serrated leaves, that have prickles attached to them. The flowers are a yellowish color. Its capsules contain two seeds, that are heart-shaped, smooth, shining, and brownish in color.
The seeds, leaves, and roots of this plant are used for various medicinal purposes in India. The leaves are used for treating tridosha fevers, urinary discharges, leucoderma, nasal haemorrhage, asthma, cough and inflammation of throat, and mental derangements. They can also be used for treating ascites, liver, and spleen disorders. The leaves usually have beneficial effects on wounds and ulcers. The Acanthus seeds/Tukhm-e-Utangan (تخم اٹنگن) can cure strangury, and are also beneficial in diseases of the blood, chest, lungs and liver. The roots regulate the menstruation in women.