How does it feel?
Manjistha is a perennial climber, native to India, which can be found growing most predominantly in the lower regions of the Himalayas and the Western Ghats in Southern India. It can also be found growing in Japan, Indonesia and Sri Lanka in moist, tropical forests up to altitudes of 3500 metres. The plant itself is prickly and will often grow over other plants. The roots have a characteristically red colouring and the leaves are an ovate shape with distinctive veins running along their length. The flowers are small and a white-green colouring. The manjistha fruits are globular and a deep purple-black.
What can I use it for?
Manjistha acts primarily as a blood cleanser and purifier. It contains a class of constituents known as quinones; the quinone rubiadin demonstrates antioxidant activity that protects against damaging free radicals. Manjistha has also demonstrated the ability to increase the number of inflammatory mediators, reducing heat and congestion within the blood flow, impacting upon a wide range of chronic inflammatory disorders.
Into the heart of Manjistha
The medicinal activity of manjistha is concentrated within the heart and the circulatory system where it will cool, cleanse and purify the blood flow. It is this action that has indicated the use of manjistha in all blood based disorders and deficiencies. Manjistha will clear any congested heat and toxicity from the blood, relieving characteristically irritated, itching and inflamed skin conditions. The profound effect of manjistha on the blood supply also indicates it in menstrual disorders and chronic inflammatory conditions. Manjistha will also effectively break down accumulations that may be obstructing the blood flow, such as tumours and lumps. The cooling nature of manjistha on the blood has made it effective in reducing irritation and agitation of the nervous system on both an emotional and physical level.
Manjistha’s affinity for cleaning, cooling and clearing the blood of all excess heat, inflammation and toxicity, indicates it in itching, eczema, psoriasis, dermatitis, vitiligo, acne, acne rosacea and herpes. It is excellent for relieving pruritus influenced by liver heat and aggravation. It is also indicated in scabies and Tinea pedis.
Manjishta clears congested blood and stops bleeding by cooling the ‘heat’ that causes bleeding. It is therefore indicated in Crohn’s disease, dysentery, bleeding ulcers. It acts as a vulnerary and hastens the healing time of skin trauma.
It is indicated where there are signs of a congested uterus, dysmenorrhoea fixed pain, clots, amenorrhoea and endometriosis. Manjistha is excellent for all menstrual imbalances.
Manjishta breaks accumulations that may be obstructing the blood flow, particularly those found in the bladder, liver and kidneys.
Manjistha is specific for gradually dissolving kidney and bladder stones. Anthraquinones act as chelating agents helping to draw excess calcium from the system.
Manjistha is naturally cooling and has a balancing effect on the emotions, indicating it in cases of epilepsy and agitation.
Alteratives are herbs that ‘alter’ the condition in a tissue by eliminating metabolic waste via the liver, large intestine, lungs, lymphatic system, skin and kidneys. Examples include Burdock root (Arctium lappa), Dandelion root (Taraxacum officinalis), Cleavers (Galium aparine), Poke (Phytolacca decandra) and Nettle leaf (Urtica dioica).Astringents
Astringents contain tannins that act to precipitate proteins and draw tissues together, tightening and toning them to reduce secretions and discharge. Astringents also tend to stop bleeding and can act on tissues with which there is no direct contact. Examples include Raspberry leaf (Rubus ideaus), Lady’s Mantle leaf (Alchemilla vulgaris), Agrimony leaf (Agrimonia eupatoria), Shepherd’s Purse leaf (Capsella bursa-pastoris), Witch Hazel leaf (Hamamelis virginiana) and Yarrow leaf (Achillea millefolium).Diuretics
Diuretics are herbs that stimulate the flow of urine, and help remove fluids from the body. Common examples are Dandelion leaf (Taraxacum officinalis), Burdock root (Arctium lappa) and Corn silk (Zea mays).Emmenagogues
Emmenagogues are herbs that stimulate and promote menstruation. Examples include Marigold flowers (Calendula officinalis) and Chaste Tree fruits (Vitex agnus-castus), Turmeric root (Curcuma longa).
Did you know?
The characteristic bright red colour of this plants root was traditionally seen as an indicator of this plant’s affinity for treating blood based disorders and deficiencies.
0.5–10g/day dried or 3–12ml/day of a 1:3 in 25% tincture
- Rasa (taste) Bitter, sweet, astringent.
- Virya (action) Cooling.
- Vipaka (post-digestive effect) Pungent.
- Guna (quality) Heavy, dry.
- Dosha effect: PK-, V+.
- Dhatu (tissue) Plasma, blood, muscles.
- Srotas (channels) Circulatory, female reproductive.