Mucuna pruriens is a tropical legume known as velvet bean and by other common names (see below), native to Africa and Asia and widely naturalized.
Mucuna pruriens silage contains 11-23% crude protein, 35-40% crude fiber, and the dried beans 20-35% crude protein. It also has use in the countries of Benin and Vietnam as a biological control for problematic Imperata cylindrica grass. Cooked fresh shoots or beans can also be eaten. This requires that they be soaked from at least 30 minutes to 48 hours in advance of cooking, or the water changed up to several times during cooking, since otherwise the plant can be toxic to humans.
The seeds of Mucuna pruriens have been used for treating many dysfunctions in Tibb-e-Unani (Unani Medicine), the traditional system of medicine of Indo-Pakistan Subcontinent.It is also used in Ayurvedic medicine.
The plant and its extracts have been long used in tribal communities as a toxin antagonist for various snakebites.