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Rudraksha (Elaeocarpus Ganitrus) Benefits & Uses

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Rudraksha (also spelled as Rudraksh) is the seed of medicinal plant botanically known as Elaeocarpus Ganitrus. It has great religious significance and used in Indian Folk Remedies & ayurvedic medicines for a wide range of diseases.

Rudraksha is helpful in the management for high blood pressure, diabetes, restlessness due to fever, chicken pox, small pox, tuberculosis, chronic cough, asthma, sciatica, heart diseases, memory loss, cancer etc.

Botanical Description

Botanically, Rudraksha is Elaeocarpus Ganitrus. The seeds are known as Rudraksha, which have several types depending on their structure.

Botanical Classification (Plant Taxonomy)

Kingdom

PLANTAE

Sub-Kingdom

VIRIDIPLANTAE

Infra Kingdom

STREPTOPHYTA  (land plants)

Super Division

EMBRYOPHYTA

Division

TRACHEOPHYTA (TRACHEOPHYTES or Vascular Plants)

Sub Division

SPERMATOPHYTINA (SPERMATOPHYTES or Seed Plants)

Class

MAGNOLIOPSIDA

Super Order

ROSANAE

Order

OXALIDALES

Family

ELAEOCARPACEAE

Genus

ELAEOCARPUS L (DICERA)

Species

ELAEOCARPUS GANITRUS (Rudraksha)

Plant Description

Rudraksha tree is a large evergreen tree, which can grow up to 50 to 200 feet.

Type of Plant

Perennial

Native Range (Geographic Distribution)

North-East India, Nepal, Bhutan, Bangladesh, Philippines, Manila, Myanmar

Height (grows up to)

50 to 200 feet

Habitat (type of environment)

Tropical and sub-tropical areas with temperature ranges of 25 to 300 Celsius

Stem

Cylindrical with coarse textured dirty white bark

Leaves

pyramidal shape

Flowers

White with fringed petals

Fruits

Bears fruits in 3 to 7 years

Seeds

When Fruits fully ripened, blue color outer shell (husk) covers the Rudraksha beads. Rudraksha Seeds are sweet in taste. Rudraksha colors can vary with brownish shades.

Medicinal Parts

Rudraksha seeds and its powder are used in ayurvedic medicines. There are different types of seeds based on structure are available. Ancient texts believe that each has its unique properties and provides specific benefits.

Phytochemistry (Chemical Composition)

Gas chromatography and C-H-N Analyzer are used for determination of elemental composition of Rudraksha. Its beads contain:

Gaseous Elements

Percentage

Carbon

50.031%

Nitrogen

0.95%

Hydrogen

17.897%

Oxygen

30.53%

Active Constituents

The following active constituents are present in Rudraksha:

Extraction with Petroleum

PHYTOSTEROLS & FIXED OIL FATS

Extraction with Ethanol

ALKALOIDS, TANNINS, CARBOHYDRATES, PROTEINS & FLAVONOIDS

Extraction with Water

TANNINS, PROTEINS & CARBOHYDRATES

Main Alkaloids

  1. ALLOELAEOCARPILINE
  2. EPIELAEOCARPILINE
  3. EPIISOELAEOCARPILINE
  4. ISOELAEOCARPINE
  5. PSEUDO-EPIISOELAEOCARPILLINE

Rudraksha also contains:

Medicinal Properties

Rudraksha has following healing properties.

  1. Antacid
  2. Anti-inflammatory
  3. Anti-arthritic
  4. Anti-pyretic
  5. Anti-hypertensive
  6. Demulcent
  7. Expectorant
  8. Carminative
  9. Digestive Stimulant
  10. Anti cancer
  11. Anti-mutagenic
  12. Hypo-glycemic
  13. Lowers bilirubin
  14. Anti-gout
  15. Analgesic
  16. Muscle relaxant
  17. Antioxidant
  18. Adaptogenic
  19. Anti-stress
  20. Antidepressant
  21. Antipruritics

Ayurvedic Properties

Taste – RASA

MADHURA (Sweet)

Main Quality – GUNA

GURU (Heavy),

SNIGADH or SNEHA (Unctuous or Oily)

Potency – VIRYA

SHEETA (Cold)

Resultant – VIPAKA

MADHURA (Sweet)

Therapeutic Effect – PRABHAVA

Rejuvenation & Supplement

DOSHA KARMA (Effect on Humors)

Pacifies VATA & PITTA

Effects on Organs

All Organs

Therapeutic Indications

Rudraksha is helpful in following health conditions.

Benefits & Medicinal Uses

According to ancient texts, Rudraksha has several types based on its structure. Each has unique benefits and specific uses.

Key Benefits of Rudraksha

  1. Rudraksha provides strength to the body and helps as adjuvants in various diseases to reduce debility due to them.
  2. It reduces headache and beneficial in mental disorders.
  3. Rudraksha acts as blood purifier, which reduces blood impurities and increases blood circulation. By this effect, it helps reaching the nutrients to every cell and tissue in the body.
  4. Immunostimulatory property of Rudraksha provides protection against common infections.
  5. It helps as adjuvant therapy in breathing disorders and chronic cough.
  6. The antihypertensive and cardio-protective properties of Rudraksha maintain blood pressure at normal level and prevent heart diseases.
  7. Rudraksha powder paste with rose water increase skin glow and brings charming effect on the face.
  8. When taken with milk, Rudraksha increases memory and brainpower.
  9. It helps in liver disorders and abdominal diseases.
  10. Rudraksha fruit or bark is a good remedy for controlling epilepsy.

Benefits Based on Rudraksha Types

Here is a brief description of benefits for each type of Rudraksha.

1 Mukhi Rudraksha
2 Mukhi Rudraksha
3 Mukhi Rudraksha
4 Mukhi Rudraksha
5 Mukhi Rudraksha
6 Mukhi Rudraksha
7 Mukhi Rudraksha
8 Mukhi Rudraksha
9 Mukhi Rudraksha
10 Mukhi Rudraksha
11 Mukhi Rudraksha
12 Mukhi Rudraksha
13 Mukhi Rudraksha
14 Mukhi Rudraksha
15 Mukhi Rudraksha
16 Mukhi Rudraksha
17 Mukhi Rudraksha
18 Mukhi Rudraksha
19 Mukhi Rudraksha
20 Mukhi Rudraksha
21 Mukhi Rudraksha
22 Mukhi Rudraksha
23 Mukhi Rudraksha

Rudraksha exerts the benefits either by bearing it touching the skin or by oral intake. Generally, for therapeutic benefits, it is taken internally in powder form or applied over the skin in skin diseases.

Rudraksha as Preventive Medicine

Rudraksha Prevents Diseases and Maintains Optimum Health

However, preventive action of Rudraksha requires more scientific research studies, but Indian people believe that bearing Rudraksha touching with skin using cotton thread (without using any metal chain) provides protection against infectious diseases and has several health benefits.

Prevention of Recurrent Upper Respiratory Tract Infections in Children

Internal intake in form of Rudraksha powder (125 mg) with warm water may have immunity enhancer effects, so it is used in prevention of recurrent upper respiratory tract infections in children.

Preventing Heart Disease

Soaking Rudraksha (7 Mukhi Rudraksha) in water and leaving it for overnight, then drink the water on empty stomach in early morning helps preventing heart diseases.

Therapeutic Benefits & Medicinal Uses of Rudraksha

The main influence of Rudraksha is on brain, nerves and alimentary canal. The detail of its therapeutic benefits with appropriate adjuvants is given below:

Restlessness & Body Ache in Fever

Rudraksha makes person feel better in fever. It has ameliorative effects. The studies show it has immunostimulatory effects. Therefore, it can also helps as adjuvant to fight off infections. (1)

Taking Rudraksha Churna (1 to 3 grams) with Shadanga Paniya or warm water helps reduce restlessness, body aches and burning sensation due to high fever. However, this remedy is not commonly used, but it can be used to relieve excessive restlessness and irritability due to fever.

Diabetes

Research studies show the potential antidiabetic effects of Rudraksha. The significant reduction is observed in blood sugar level in experimental animals. (2, 3, 4)

Taking 1 gram Rudraksha Churna with 10 ml Juice of Neem Leaves helps controlling blood sugar level. The following Rudraksha Combination is also helpful in diabetes management.

Rudraksha Churna

1000 mg

Jamun leaves

1000 mg

Tulsi – Holy Basil Leaves

1000 mg

This mixture should be taken on empty stomach and twice a day.

High Blood Pressure (Hypertension)

Rudraksha has antihypertensive and cardioprotective effects, so it is a good alternative measure against hypertension. The research studies suggested that soaking Rudraksha in water in copper vessel, then taking it in the morning on empty stomach is more beneficial high blood pressure. Copper may increase the antihypertensive property of Rudraksha. (5)

Ayurveda has suggested following ways to use Rudraksha to manage high blood pressure.

  1. Take 250 ml water in a copper vessel and soak Rudraksha in this water overnight. Drink the water on empty stomach.
  2. Alternatively, eating 2 grams Rudraksha powder with water kept in copper vessel is more beneficial as compared to first one.
  3. The decoction made with 400 ml water and 5 grams Rudraksha powder and then reduced to 100 ml water is also beneficial in hypertension.
Chicken Pox

Rudraksha helps reducing severity of chickenpox symptoms. It reduces malaise, tiredness and headache. Further, it decreases burning sensation and pain on chicken pox rashes. It speeds up recovery process and prevents complications.

Acne & Pimples

Rudraksha anti-inflammatory and antimicrobial properties help curing acne and pimples. Its local application is more helpful, reduces recurrence, and provides soothing feeling by alleviating acne symptoms. The following combinations using Rudraksha are used in ayurveda.

This remedy provides glowing effect to the face and skin. It also reduces acne and prevents recurrence.

This remedy is more beneficial for improving skin glow. It makes you feel fresh.

Black Spots & Blemish

Rudraksha fades dark spots and reduces blemishes. It is used internally as well as externally.

Internal Use: Internally, Rudraksha is taken with Mulethi (Licorice), Amalaki (Indian Gooseberry) and Manjistha. The mixture of these four herbs is beneficial internally to reduce hyperpigmentation, black spots and blemish. A teaspoon (5 grams) powder should be taken with water an hour after meal twice a day.

External Use: Fine powder of Rudraksha mixing with rose water is applied over the skin with dark spots, hyperpigmentation and blemishes. The regular use fades the dark spots and makes skin clearer.

Burning Sensation

If patient feels burning sensation in whole body, then the decoction of Rudraksha powder and sandalwood (Chandan) is used in amount of 50 to 100 ml. It gives relief in burning sensation.

If patient has burning sensation on the skin, the Rudraksha paste made with rose water is applied over the skin.

Cough

Rudraksha is rarely used for treating cough, but its powder can be used with honey to cure cough. It is more beneficial when patients have cough with chest tightness and cough starts with irritation in the throat.

Breathing Problems & Asthma

Rudraksha is beneficial in severe cases of asthma and breathing troubles.

Rudraksha Powder

2000 mg

Turmeric Powder – Haldi Churna

2000 mg

Honey

10 ml

Rudraksha and Turmeric powder are mixed in equal amount with honey as above proportion. In acute attach, the patient is asked to lick the paste after every 15 to 30 minutes. In chronic cases, this mixture should be taken 2 to 3 times a day.

Tuberculosis

However, now we have better treatment for tuberculosis, but our ancient doctors were using the following Rudraksha combination.

Herbs

Quantity per Dose

Rudraksha Powder

2000 mg

Rudanti Powder – Capparis Moonii

2000 mg

Vanshlochan – Bamboo Manna

1000 mg

This Rudraksha mixture was given to patients with tuberculosis. Now, it can be used as supportive therapy along with Swarna Bhasma and Vasant Malti Ras in case of Multi Drug Resistant Tuberculosis. Vanshlochan should be added in higher possible dosage to protect and strengthen the lungs.

Dosage & Administration

The general dosage of Rudraksha is as follows.

Children

500 mg to 1 gram *

Adults

1 gram to 3 grams *

* Twice a day with appropriate adjuvant

Safety Profile

Rudraksha is LIKELY SAFE & WELL TOLERABLE in most people within the dosage of Rudraksha as described above.

Side Effects

There are no side effects observed with Rudraksha.

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