This characteristic is quite common within the Mimosaceae family.The 'sensitive plant', Mimosa Pudica, also known as 'humble plant', or 'touch-me-not', is a source of fascination to adults and children alike. This touch-induced movement of leaves is known scientifically as thigmonasty, and is thought to be a defensive mechanism against grazers. The scientific name of 'Sensitive Plant', Mimosa Pudica is derived from the Greek, mimosa meaning 'a mimic' which alludes to the sensitivity of the leaves; and the Latin pudica, meaning bashful, retiring or shrinking.
Extracts of the plant have been shown in scientific trials to be a moderate diuretic, depress duodenal contractions similar to atropine sulphone, promote regeneration of nerves, and reduce menorrhagia. Antidepressant activity has also been demonstrated in humans. Root extracts are reported to be a strong emetic, due to the mimosine. A decoction of the root of the plant is considered useful in gravel and other urinary complaints. it also relieves scabies patches. It is also known to relieve asthma and diarrhea. A paste of the leaves is applied to glandular swellings, the juice of the leaves is used in dressings for sinus and also as an application for sores and piles.
According to the Indian traditional Ayurvedha practice, the liquid drink helps to eliminate kidney stones or kidney disorder. The root is also considered an aphrodisiac while the leaves are boiled (decoction) in water for a half hour and drank hot or cold for the treatment of diabetes and obesity. Also, the concussion of boiled leaves drank to treat sore throat, hoarseness, urinary complaints and hypertension.