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Betel (also called Arecanuts) are dried seeds from the Areca Catechu palm tree which are usually found in India, Indonesia, Malaysia, Myanmar and Thailand. This 30 meter tall slender palm has hard, round, reddish-colored fruit, which has a fibrous mesocarp and a thin wood endocarp that wraps one seed each. The fruit is usually dried by the sun until the mesocarp and endocarp are removed. The dried seeds are then used as betelnut. Bethels are usually sold in 4 variants; all betel nuts, split betel nuts, lali (red betel nuts) and boiled / steamed betel nuts.


Arecanuts / betelnut are widely used in most of South Asia as masticatory drugs, because they are stimulating, digestive and cardiotonic given by tannins and alkaloids in them. The most common use for arecanut is in the ritual of chewing betel nut (also called aan paan ‘) in India & Pakistan. Bethel is also used for healing worms and for cosmetic purposes such as anti aging.


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