Learn About Ayurveda, Unani & Siddha Medicines

Shankhpushpi (Convolvulus pluricaulis)

Shankhpushpi is a brain tonic that has tremendous potential in the proper working and functioning of the human brain. It is a traditional Ayurvedic herb. It is also called as Shankhuli or Shankhul in Hindi and Shankhpushpi in English. The botanical name of shankpushpi is Convolvulus pluricaulis. It has white and blue colored flowers that are round or bell-shaped. It is a herb with multiple pharmacological potentials. It is used in treating cough and cold, strengthening the digestive system, curing skin diseases, promoting sleep, useful in controlling high blood pressure, promoting hair growth etc. Shankhpushpi is a Nature’s gift to mankind as it affects the overall health. It promotes good health and helps in weight gain. It also enhances the beauty of the skin by nourishing the layers of skin.

Shankhpushpi, Or Convolvulus Pluricaulis, is an ayurvedic medicine commonly used in the management of hypertension, hormonal disorders, skin problems, and high cholesterol. This herb produces an antihypertensive and antilipemic action, which help in the treatment of high blood pressure and high cholesterol.

HOW IT WORKS

Shankhpushpi is a plant of medicinal use. It contains glacial acetic acid, scoploetin, kaempferol, convoline, coumarins and a beta-sito sterol. It is also rich in carbohydrates such as glucose, maltose, rhamnose, and sucrose. Shankhpushpi works on the central nervous system. It boosts memory and enhances intelligence.  (1, 2)

In Ayurveda, shankhpushpi is considered as a rejuvenator and a Medhya Rasayana. (3)

THINGS TO KNOW

Shankhpushpi is a splendid herb whose all plant parts are useful. Root is the main part which is used to make medicine.  The leaves are used to treat asthma and bronchitis.

INDICATIONS & USES

  • Anxiolytic
  • Brain Tonic
  • Nerve Tonic
  • Nootropic
  • Tranquillizer
  • Antidepressant
  • Anti-stress
  • Anti-amnesic
  • Hypolipidemic
  • Immunomodulatory
  • Anti-fungal
  • Antibacterial
  • Cardiotonic
  • Memory enhancing
  • Antioxidant
  • Analgesic
  • Anti-catatonic
  • Anti-ulcer
  • Anti-diabetic

RECOMMENDED DOSAGE

Different forms of shankhpushpi are used differently. For example, the shankhpushpi powder is used 1-2 g, the extract can be used 250 mg. water decoction can also be prepared and used. It also comes in capsule form. 1 capsule a day can be taken as per the advice of the doctor.

BENEFITS & EFFECTIVENESS

Shankpushpi is a perennial herb of medical importance. It has been used to treat liver disease, epileptic disease, microbial disease, cytotoxic disease, viral diseases and diseases of the central nervous system since ages in Ayurveda and Chinese traditional medicine. (4)

The whole plant of shankhpushpi is beneficial. It can be used in the form of juice, extract, paste and powdered form. Different forms are used for different diseases. The juice of the whole plant is beneficial in preventing excessive menstruation. (5)

It is also used to cure abscess by making a paste. (6)

The root of the plant is also used to regulate hyperthyroidism. (7)

The flowers are dried and ground in the form of powder.

Mental Disorders

Shankhpushpi is a brain tonic that helps to treat many mental disorders. It is also used to treat Alzheimer’s disease and dementia.

Memory Improvement

Shankhpusphi is a traditional herbal medicine that can be used for memory improvement. It acts on the central nervous system (CNS) and enhances memory. (8)

It increases the memory functions and learning abilities. (9)

Many Ayurvedic formulations are available that act as memory enhancers. The chemical compounds found in the herb such as sitosterol, beta-sitosterol, convoline, subhirsine, etc act as memory enhancers. Consuming shankhpushpi improves memory improvement.

Neural Tonic

Shankhpushpi is a neural tonic that calms the nerves by regulating the production of the stress hormones, adrenaline, and cortisol. (10)

Mental fatigue

Mental fatigue, though a non-specific symptom, can produce a serious negative impact on the cognitive performance of the patients. It becomes evident when the patient is unable to concentrate and feels lethargic most of the times. Shankhpushpi can help in reducing mental fatigue and provides an increased energy level and enthusiasm for the patients to work.

Brain tonic

Convolvulus pluricaulis is used as a brain tonic as it calms and relaxes the mind. It stimulates the activities of brain and releases tension. It is also used to treat hypertension. It is one of the best herbs to be used as a brain tonic.

Hyperthyroidism

Regular consumption of Shankhpushpi can treat hyperthyroidism. The compounds found in its extract acts on some liver enzymes and relieve the symptoms of hyperthyroidism in the female. The root extract is used for this purpose.

Shankhpushpi can be used to treat hyperthyroidism. It works by correcting the imbalance of hormones in the body that play a role in the production of thyroid hormones. It also relieves the symptoms of hyperthyroidism such as increased sweating, tremors, and weight loss.

Ulcer treatment

The polyphenols and flavonoids found in Shankhpushpi are anti-ulcer in their activities. The whole plant juice is used to treat a gastric ulcer. It reduces the ulcers by healing the lesions caused by the excess acid in the stomach. It also strengthens the mucous membrane and mucosal cells.

Shankhpushpi can be used for fighting ulcers formed in different organs such as the oral cavity, stomach, and the duodenum.

It has anti-ulcer properties, which serve as a mucosal defensive element just like the glycoproteins and the mucin secretion.

Insomnia

Shankhpushpi extract is also used in treating insomnia. Drinking shankhpushpi tonic relaxes the mind and helps to overcome a sleep disorder, depression, anxiety and mental fatigue.

For lactation

Shankhpushpi is safe to be consumed during pregnancy and should be taken after medical advice. It is also beneficial for lactating mother.

Hypertension

Shankhpushpi is used for treating hypertension. It controls the production and release of the body’s stress hormones including adrenaline and cortisol, which are responsible for the regulation of blood pressure. It maintains the balance of these hormones and thus, reduces blood pressure. It also helps in preventing the common causes of hypertension such as anxiety and stress. It produces an adaptogenic action, which improves the ability of the person to cope with stressful situations thus preventing the rise in blood pressure.

Neurodegenerative disorders

Shankhpushpi has been found to be beneficial for the patients suffering from neurodegenerative disorders like Alzheimer’s disease and dementia. It contains memory-boosting property, which helps to enhance the memory of the patients suffering from these diseases. The memory-boosting action of Shankhpushpi can be attributed to the rich content of phytonutrients such as Phyllabine, Scopoline ß-Sitosterol, Confoline Subhirsine, Convolvidine, Convoline, and Convolvine in this herb. It acts as a brain tonic and stimulates its functions.

It also prevents the degeneration of the brain cells and thus, helps to delay the progression of these diseases. It also enhances the cognitive abilities of the patients by improving their attention span, concentration, and level of alertness.

Skin diseases

Shankhpushpi is a potent skin tonic. It nourishes the layers of the skin and enhances the skin complexion. Regular use of this herb can help to prevent acne, blemishes, and dermatitis.

High Cholesterol

The extract of Shankhpushpi can be used to treat hypercholesterolemia. It helps to decrease the cholesterol levels in the blood. It also stimulates the excretion of some forms of fatty acids, which are harmful to the body. These actions of Shankhpushpi can help in the prevention of diseases that can occur due to the high cholesterol level such as myocardial infarction and cerebrovascular stroke.

Joint disorders

Shankhpushpi acts as a natural analgesic agent and helps in relieving joint pains caused due to osteoarthritis, and rheumatoid arthritis. The analgesic effect produced by this herb is similar to the effect produced by morphine.

SAFETY & TOXICOLOGY

Since shankhpushpi reduces blood pressure it should not be consumed by a person with low blood pressure.

Overdose Side Effects

Shankhpushpi overdoses should be avoided and always taken in right amount as prescribed by the doctor.

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