The vata tree (Ficus bengalensis Linn.) is a sacred medicinal plant used in Ayurveda system of medicine since ancient times. Since Vedic times its small branches are used in a sacrificial rite and known for its giant structure. Ayurveda and other Indian literature have mentioned the use of this plant in treatment of various human ailments. Present study aimed to compile the medicinal uses of this imperative medicinal plant in the classical Ayurveda texts of brihatrayee (Main Ayurveda texts Caraka samhita, Sushruta samhita and Astangahridaya). Study observed that in traditional system of medicine various parts of this plant such as stem bark, root bark, aerial roots, vegetative buds, leaves, fruits and Latex are abundantly mentioned for assorted therapeutic conditions. Review suggests that there is lots of scope for further scientific research on this aspect to bring this wide spread of therapeutic uses in the main stream of Ayurveda practices.
Keywords: Banyan tree, Ficus bengalensis, Natural medicine.