Tuesday, October 06, 2009

Herbs for Healthy Aging:

Ashwagandha (Withania somnifera). Ashwagandha is a shrubby plant which offers tremendous potential as an energizing medicinal herb. Ayurvedic practitioners have used the roots of this plant for centuries with success as a tonic to increase vitality and longevity, as well as to treat health conditions as diverse as tumors and arthritis.Ashwagandha was tested for its anti-aging properties. The subjects experienced significant improvement in hemoglobin, RBC count, hair melanin, and seated stature. Serum cholesterol decreased and nail calcium was preserved, and 70 percent of the research subjects reported improvement in sexual performance.

Amla (Emblica officinalis). Amla is a rejuvenator. It has antioxidant properties and can counter the toxicity of heavy metals such as nickel, cobalt, arsenic, and mercury. It also provides protective properties after one has been exposed to toxic or carcinogenic chemicals.It has powerful anti-cancerous properties and has been used in cancer therapy to cut down the side effects of chemotherapy and radiation. According to ancient Ayurvedic texts, one who consumes a rasayana with Amla as the main ingredient is one who will “live for a hundred years without any sign of decrepitude.” Among other things, Amla is one of the richest sources of natural vitamin C available and is well-known as a powerful immune support.

Shatawari (Asparagus racemosus). This herb has tonic, adaptogenic, alterative (curative), and aphrodisiac activities. It is used to treat debility and chronic diseases like infertility, impotence, menopause, lung abscesses, and chronic fevers, as well as stomach ulcers, hyperacidity, and hormonal imbalance and diarrhea. Decoctions of the herb have a soothing effect on dry and irritated membranes, making it useful in treating bronchitis and other respiratory ailments.As a rasayana, it is believed to bring all of the body’s fluids into balance.

Trifala (Terminalia chebula, Terminalia bellerica, and Emblica officinalis). Trifala is another adaptogen. The combined herbs are synergistic and have digestive and eliminative actions. It has anti-parasitic, anti-yeast, anti-bacterial, and antihistaminic properties. It improves the flow of bile, lowers cholesterol, and can be used as adjuvant in chemotherapy and radiation treatments.

Shilajeet (Mineral pitch). Shilajeet is a rich source of naturally occurring minerals. Russian athletes used it as a nonsteroidal body builder and stamina enhancer. Ayurvedic medicine considers it as an aphrodisiac, a tonic for the kidneys and prostate. It helps with benign prostate enhancement and is an immune enhancer.In Ayurveda, Shilajit is considered a rasayana herb and an adaptogen.4 The substance has been found to contain at least 85 minerals in ionic form, as well as humic acid and fulvic acid. Clinical research has been conducted to determine Shilajit’s pharmacological activity, and the results have confirmed its traditional uses in treating impotence, sterility, mental diseases, and for improving memory and learning.

Pippli (Piper longum). Pippli helps in digestion, and enhances acid and enzyme secretions. It significantly enhances the absorption of nutrients, herbs, and drugs, and has shown anti-allergic, anti-asthmatic, and powerful anti-parasitic actions.Ancient Ayurvedic texts list Pippli as one of the most powerful rasayana herbs, which means that it is a valuable longevity enhancer. It is also considered a purifying herb, with soothing qualities that help improve the quality of sleep.

1 comment:

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