Strobilanthes crispus or Pecah Beling origin comes from Madagascar, but widely grown in Indonesia and Malaysia. It is considered as one of the most important herbs especially among Malay folk. The plant is also known as Hei Mian Jiang Jun (Black-faced General) to the local Chinese community. This plant can grow up to 2 meter and it belongs to the Acanthaceae family. It is a flowering shrub and perennial.
Strobilanthes crispus is traditionally used as a folklore medicinal plant in Malaysia and Indonesia as an antidiabetic, diuretic, or antilithic agent as well as a laxative to treat constipation. It is commonly consumed in the form herbal tea. The leaves of the plants are normally boiled and taken as tea or is mixed with other herbs.
S. crispa has high mineral and phenolic content, and exhibits high antioxidant activity. The plant contains alkaloids, tannins, polyphenols, water-soluble vitamins, caffeine, catechins and bioactive compounds, including β-sitosterol, and stigmasterol. Studies have demonstrated that S. crispa leaves possess anti-diabetic, diuretic, hypolipidemic effects and also cancer cell inhibitory activities.