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Chyawanprash



 

Chyawanprash, also spelled chyavanaprasha, chyavanaprash, chyavanaprasam and chyawanaprash, is an ancient Ayurvedic health tonic, widely used in India, as a rejuvenative, energizer and immunity booster. It is often called "the elixir of life" due to its numerous nutritional properties and benefit to the body.

Additional recommended knowledge

Contents

Origin

It is said that Chyawan Rishi was the first to prepare this tonic. Hence the name chyawanprash. The first historically documented formula for chywanprash is found in Charaka Samhita, the ancient Ayurvedic treatise.

Appearance and use

Chywanprash is a brown-colored, sticky paste with the consistency of jam and a sweet/sour/spicy taste. It can be eaten directly (one or two teaspoons per day), or mixed in warm milk or water. It can be used like any other jam, spread onto crackers or bread.

Even though no strict diet is administered during the intake of Chyawanprash it is always advised to drink a glass of milk after each intake of the above. Chyawanprash intake is usually done once in a day usually after breakfast or after dinner. Chyawanprash is produced and sold by many ayurvedic centers such as Kottackal Ayurveda Pharmacy, Nagarjuna Ayurveda Pharmacy,Himalaya Chyavanaprasha and Dabur.

Composition

Since many companies manufacture chyawanprash, the recipe may differ a bit. The number of herbs used in preparation of the paste varies from 25 to 80, but the main ingredient of all Chyawanprash should be amla. Other chief ingredients are dried catkins, cinnamon, asparagus, ashwagandha, turmeric, ghee (clarified butter), dehydrated sugar cane and honey. Amla (Indian Gooseberry) -- a fruit rich in Vitamin C and Pectin -- is the chief ingredient in Chyawanprash, particularly in the product sold by Dabur India Ltd. It was in the 1940s when Dabur adopted the original Ayurvedic chyawanprash formula and created the largest selling branded Chyawanprash in India. Dabur Chyawanprash still strictly follows the original recipe that was laid down centuries ago and its properties still remain the same.

Ingredients

The best-known brand for chyawanprash is Dabur, it include the ingredients:

  • Fresh Amla fruit (Indian gooseberry)
  • Sugar
  • Honey
  • Ghee
  • Long pepper (Piper longum)
  • Sesame oil
  • Giant potato (Ipomoea mauritiana, or Kiribadu Ala)
  • Cardamom
  • Bamboo manna (or Tabasheer or Bamboo silica)
  • Indian kudzu
  • Winter cherry (or Ashwaghanda)
  • Asparagus
  • Cinnamon bark
  • Dashmool (Bengal quince, migraine bark, Indian trumpet flower, Purple snake tree or Indian purple trumpet, Sal leaf bush, Urara pitch, Indian nightshade, Small nightshade, Small caltrops, Cashmere bark)
  • Country mallow
  • Wild green gram
  • Wild black gram
  • Galls
  • Feather foll plant (or Bhumiamalaki)
  • Raisins
  • Ceylon-cow plant (Gymnema lactiferum)
  • Irish root
  • Chebulic myrobalan
  • Round zedoary
  • Nut grass
  • Spreading hogweed (Boerhavia diffussa)
  • Blue Egyptian water lily
  • Malabar nut (Seed of Adhatoda vasica)
  • Liquorice
  • Tiger's claw or Ice plant
  • Sandalwood
  • Clove
  • Chinese cinnamon
  • Cobra's saffron (or Nagkesar or Indian Rose Chestnut
  • Preservative: Potassium sorbate

Benefits

Note: These benefits are as mentioned in the Ayurvedic texts and manufacturers' ads. Many of these benefits may have not been proven scientifically.

  • Chyawanprash is a rejuvenative and protects the body against three kinds of doshas.
  • Regular intake of Chyawanprash strengthens digestion, absorption and assimilation of food. It eases constipation.
  • Chyawanprash's basic ingredient amla is the richest natural source of Vitamin C . Ascorbic acid , commonly known as vitamin C is known to benefit the immune system and helps fight against common cold and respiratory infections.
  • Chyawanprash is also beneficial to the heart and the brain cells. It is considered a memory booster.
  • It also works as an antioxidant, thus slowing down the aging process.
  • It is believed that Chyawanprash purifies blood, eliminates toxins and is beneficial to liver.
  • It is also said to fight bacterial skin infections and improve complexion.
  • It promotes absorption of calcium, leading to stronger bones and teeth.
  • It also improves muscle tone by enhancing protein synthesis.
  • It is especially beneficial for cough and asthma patients.
  • It enhances fertility and keeps menstruation regular.

Scientific Studies and Tests

  • According to this study, Chyawanprash helps to prevent steroid induced cataract in the developing chick embryo.
  • According to this study, significantly lowers blood cholestrol
  • According to this study, Chyawanprash has anti-oxidant properties as evidenced by preventing genotoxic effect of smoking

Reference: Puri, H.S. (2003) RASAYANA: Ayurvedic Herbs for Rejuvenation and Longivity. Taylor & Francis, London

  • Chyawanprash - The Premier Rasayana of Ayurveda - by Subhuti Dharmananda, Ph.D., Director, Institute for Traditional Medicine, Portland, Oregon
  • [1] Chyawanprash by Ingrid Naiman
 
This article is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. It uses material from the Wikipedia article "Chyawanprash". A list of authors is available in Wikipedia.
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