Shankhpushpi is herb with many therapeutic benefits. It is used in Ayurveda to treat many illnesses of the brain such as hypertension, stress, sleeplessness, depression, and behavioral disorders.
It helps to deal with stress and tension, which hinder the efficient functioning of the brain.
An important use of Shankhpushpi is to boost memory power and concentration.
The various parts of this plant have medicinal properties, which make it useful in curing many diseases.
This article tells you everything you need to know about Shankhpushpi. You will realize the medicinal value of this lovely herb, explore ways to gain these benefits and learn to use them in your daily life.
You would also find a section on how the Shankhpushpi improves memory.
The Shankhpushpi Plant
The Shankhpushpi is a grass like a herb that grows throughout the year. It mostly grows on rocky or sandy areas.
The scientific name of Shankhpushpi is Convolvulus pluricaulis, belonging to the plant family Convolvulaceae. It is considered as a type of morning glory.
The leaves are ½ to 1 ½ inch long, located at alternate positions with branches. They are broad at the base and taper towards the tip.
The branches of the plant spread out across the ground and can be as long as 30 cm. The fruits are normally small and shiny, with a brown color.
The color of the Shankhpushpi flowers may be blue, white, or light pink. These are 2mm in size and are elliptical shaped.
Medicinal Parts Of Shankhpushpi
The whole plant inclusive of the flowers, leaves, fruits, stem, and roots has medicinal value.
Ayurvedic Properties of Shankhpushpi
- Taste (Rasa): Bitter (Katu), Astringent (Kashya)
- Qualities (Guna): Glossy (Snigdh), Sticky (Pichchila)
- Potency (Virya): Cool (Sheeta)
- Resultant Effect (Vipaka): Sweet (Madhur)
- Effect on Dosha (Dosha karma): Pacifies the three doshas (Vata, Pitta, Kapha)
Forms Of Usage Of Shankhpushpi
Shankhpushpi is taken in powder form and is also available as tablets. It is commonly taken in the liquid form, due to its taste as well as the ease of consumption. The fresh herb is used to make a herbal paste.
The dosage depends on the form in which the herb is taken. It would also vary according to factors like the age and weight of a person.
It would be advisable to confirm with your physician, who would prescribe the right dosage for you.
Medicinal Benefits Of Shankhpushpi
Shankhpushpi is a brain tonic, which improves its performance and capacity. It also enhances memory, intelligence, and concentration.
Shankhpushpi contains flavonoids, glycosides, coumarins, and alkaloids. Shankha pushpine, an alkaloid, is the active principle. It also contains B- sitosterol, Kaempferol, Hydroxy Cinnamic acid, and N- hexacosanol.
For years, it has found application in treating disorders such as anxiety, stress, hypertension, insomnia, neurosis, epilepsy, dementia and Alzheimer.
According to Ayurveda, while Shankhpushpi is used to pacify all the three doshas, it is particularly effective in treating diseases related to the pitta.
Shankhpushpi is mainly used to treat the following:
- Mental stress
- A headache
- Lack of concentration
- Heat sensation
- Excess sweating
- Memory loss
- Mild convulsions
- Anorexia nervosa
- Mental fatigue
- Mood swings
Some secondary applications of Shankhpushpi include treatment for:
- Mild inflammations
- Loss of appetite
- Digestive disorders
- Hematemesis ( blood in vomit)
- Recurrent miscarriages
Health Benefits Of Shankhpushpi
Let us now understand the benefits of this wonderful herb in treating the following conditions:
1. Stress And Depression
Mental stress and depression can adversely affect brain functions. It can result in physical changes in the brain; disrupt the balance of neurotransmitters, and cause hormonal changes.
Shankhpushpi can help to restore the balance of neurotransmitters. It improves the secretion of dopamine to make the person feel good and alert. It controls neurotoxicity and reduces depression. Also, promotes a feeling of calm and relaxation.
Shankhpushpi can relieve headaches caused by stress, mental workload, and weakness. It improves the functioning of the nervous tissues and brain. It can soothe irritation, create a calming effect and treat headaches.
Shankhpushpi syrup can be used for such headaches. Taking one gram of Shankhpushpi powder and 250mg of ajowan, along with warm water can provide almost instant relief for headaches.
Dementia leads to damage of the brain cells and can be caused due to many factors. Shankhpushpi helps to prevent further damage to the cells, improves the functioning of healthy cells, thereby improving dementia.
4. Mental Fatigue
People with mental fatigue experience a lower cognitive performance. Some causes of mental fatigue include mental stress, work overload, learning or memorizing, and computer work. The person may be lethargic and loses ability to focus.
Shankhpushpi can reduce mental fatigue helps to increase enthusiasm and concentration.
One teaspoon of Shankhpushpi powder with water can be taken twice a day to decrease mental fatigue. It is sometimes taken in combination with Ashwagandha powder for improved benefits.
It can be used to treat hypersensitivity of the nerves, which may result in the person being unable to bear loud noises or strong smells. These symptoms are treated using an Ayurvedic combination with Shankhpushpi powder.
6. Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD)
Shankhpushpi can reduce mental irritability and is effective in treating this condition.
Shankhpushpi powder is used in combination with other herbal medicines in water or honey to treat ADHD.
It helps to reduce symptoms of aggression, restlessness, the sensation of heat, too much sweating, and mood swings, associated with ADHD.
Shankhpushpi is used for treating epilepsy and anxiety. You can consume two grams of its juice with honey, two times a day. Take three grams of the mixture of Shankhpushpi, Sweet flag (bach), and Brahmi in equal quantities, to treat epilepsy and hysteria.
8. Cholesterol Reduction
The ethanolic extract of Shankhpushpi helps to reduce triglycerides, total serum cholesterol, and phospholipids. It also decreases non-esterified fatty acid levels, thereby decreasing the risk of cardiac arrest and heart disease.
9. Loss Of Appetite
Shankhpushpi is effective to treat loss of appetites caused by mental and emotional disturbances. It can also stimulate appetite and improves the functioning of the digestive system.
10. Recurrent Miscarriages
Recurrent miscarriage can be caused by weakness of the uterus and other associated organs.
To treat this condition, Shankhpushpi powder and Ashwagandha powder is used, as this medication strengthens the uterus.
Other Usage Of Shankhpushpi In Different Health Condition
- Shankhpushpi improves digestion, prevents fluid retention, and has laxative properties. The herbal extracts of the plant are used to treat ailments of the digestive system such as constipation, jaundice, dysentery, piles dyspepsia, etc.
- A teaspoon of Shankhpushpi juice with a pinch of black pepper powder in honey can be used to control vomiting.
- It also prevents water retention within the body and boosts the immune system.
- The root of the plant helps in curing childhood fever.
- Shankhpushpi relieves vomiting, burning sensation, and thirst, which occur during fever.
- The leaves help to relieve chest congestion and is used to treat a cough, asthma, and bronchitis.
- A decoction prepared using the whole plant in milk and cumin treats fever, memory loss, nervous debility, syphilis, and scrofula.
- To control diabetes, take 6 gm of Shankhpushpi powder with water or cow’s butter, two times a day.
- Its memory- enhancing properties make the Shankhpushpi beneficial in treating neurodegenerative diseases like Alzheimer.
- Shankhpushpi can reduce hyperthyroidism and decreases liver enzyme activity.
- Take 10-20mg of the fresh juice of Shankhpushpi twice a day, to obtain its benefits in reducing high blood pressure.
- The juice extracts of Shankhpushpi is used to relieve a migraine.
- It is used to treat insomnia (sleeplessness), by creating a calm and relaxing effect and promotes sleep.
- The roots of the white flower Shankhpushpi is used to prepare a paste for curing skin diseases.
- The ground seeds of Shankhpushpi mixed with honey is used to treat tonsillitis.
- Shankhpushpi has analgesic properties to relieve pain. This finds use in naturally relieving arthritis, rheumatic pains, and osteoarthritis.
- Shankhpushpi oil is beneficial for the hair. It prevents premature graying, controls hair fall, and promotes hair growth.
- The oil is also used to cure skin problems, reduces wrinkles, and nourishes the skin. It provides nourishment to all the layers of the skin. To gain benefits of Shankhpushpi for the skin, consume 2-4 gm of the powder with honey. It is also used as a decoction with cumin and milk.
- Shankhpushpi strengthens the urogenital system and is used as an aphrodisiac. The extracts of Shankhpushpi have spermatogenic properties.
- One gram of Shankhpushpi flower powder with honey can be taken daily to treat uterus bleeding.
- It is used to treat ailments of the urinary system.
- Shankhpushpi can be used to cure bed-wetting. Children can be given 2 gm of the powder and 1gm black sesame along with milk.
- It also fights ulcers caused by glycoproteins and mucous secretions.
- Shankhpushpi has hemostatic properties, which are used to treat bleeding The plant is useful in internal hemorrhages.
- A paste made from the leaves of the Shankhpushpi with salt is applied to treat glandular swelling and cervical adenitis. The leaves of the white flower Shankhpushpi is used in treating retro auricular adenitis.
- Shankhpushpi root extracts are used to cure eye, throat and urinary infections, and ulcers.
- A decoction of the herb helps to clean wounds and prevents pus formation.
- To reduce swelling, apply a mixture of the ground leaves of Shankhpushpi with salt.
- For a person affected by sunstroke, in an unconscious state, 5-10 gm of Shankhpushpi powder with milk and honey can be helpful.
- Fresh leaves of the plant with ginger juice can control excess sweating.
- It is used in Rasayana therapy, to enhance the physical and psychic aspects of the body and mind. It reduces the effects of aging, promotes longevity, provides rejuvenation, improves intelligence, and provides better resistance to diseases.
- Also used as a psycho-stimulant and tranquilizer. Herbal extracts have tranquilizing properties, which is useful in treating syncope and vertigo.
Shankhpushpi For Memory
Shankhpushpi improves the ability to receive, retain and recall information, which helps to enhance memory.
The positive effects of Shankhpushpi include better concentration levels, improved grasping of information, clear thinking, verbal learning skills, reasoning, improved motor skills, and quicker recalling of information.
Stress has adverse effects on the brain and nerve functioning, which also affects memory. Shankhpushpi regulates the production of the stress hormones adrenaline and cortisol.
Adrenaline prepares the body to respond to the stress by fight or flight. It increases heart rate, blood pressure, and breathing rate.
Cortisol suppresses the immune system and increases metabolism. Shankhpushpi controls the stress hormones and helps to restore learning, improve retention, and enhance memory.
Take 3-5 gm of Shankhpushpi powder with sugar and milk daily in the morning to improve memory. You can alternatively take the same quantity of the powder with honey, and then drink milk.
The roots of Shankhpushpi with butter or ghee can be taken 2-3 times a day to increase intelligence and memory.
Children may be given 2-4 gm of the powder with 1 gm of the Sweet flag (bach) daily, to boost intelligence and retention power.
When Can I See The Results Of Shankhpushpi?
Natural treatments do not provide instantaneous results. Rather they begin to show their overall positive effects within some days of continuous use and provide long-lasting results.
Generally, Shankhpushpi takes around 3-4 weeks to produce results. The duration taken would vary across individuals depending on the condition and its severity.
Side Effects And Precautions
Normally, Shankhpushpi does not produce any side effects and can be used by all, regardless of age, gender, and environmental factors. It is safe when taken in the recommended dosage and can be used regularly.
Some people may find it uncomfortable to consume the fresh herbal paste, due to its taste.
Use of Shankhpushpi has not been found to cause negative effects in pregnant women and lactating mothers. It helps to prevent miscarriage and strengthens the uterus.
People with low blood pressure need to be careful with its usage, as Shankhpushpi decreases blood pressure.
People taking medications for other medical conditions should consult their doctor before taking Shankhpushpi.