Guggulu also known as guggul is the resin of a plant which is known as Commiphora Mukul. This plant grows as a small tree and reaches a height of 4-5 feet. The branches have thorns. These plants are found from northern Africa to central Asia, but they are most common in northern India. Ayurvedic scholars eulogise this resin with various Sanskrit names based on its medicinal properties. They are as follows
- Guggulu : The one which protects us from diseases.
- Devadhupa : The fragrant resin which is used during prayers.
- Koushika : This gum is present inside the tree bark or Kosha.
- Pura : It is the best amongst all medicines.
- Mahishaksha : Its colour resembles the eyes of buffalo
- Palankasha: The herbal part which helps in weight loss.
What are the qualities of best guggulu ?
The guggulu which is soft, sticky, sweet flavoured, bitter (tikta rasa) to taste, yellowish and easily get dissolved in water is considered as best guggulu for medicinal use. It should be devoid of pollutants like dust, sand and other impurities.
The resin should be collected in the winter seasons (shishira and hemanta ritu).Usually one gets 800 grams to 1000 grams of resin per tree.
Ayurvedic Properties of Guggulu :
Texts of Ayurveda describe properties of guggulu as follows
Guggulu which is stored for ages will be light to digest, dries up the tissues of body, penetrates deep tissues, quickly shows medicinal effects and very fragrant. Fresh guggulu is soft and sticky to touch.
This resin has bitter taste and hot in potency. It normalises all three doshas.
What are the Health Benefits of Guggulu:
Since it normalises all three doshas it is used in almost all diseases. The following health conditions are usually addressed with guggulu preparations.
Obesity: We know that obesity is main cause for heart diseases, diabetes, joint pains, PCOS and other metabolic disorders. Based on principles of Ayurveda obesity occurs when Vata vitiates Kapha. This resin is specially used in weight loss preparations. The NILOBESE AYURVEDIC WEIGHT LOSS Capsules contain Guggulu along with other potent fat burning herbs as one of its ingredients.
Increased Blood Cholesterol: various researches show that guggulu is very effective in reducing blood cholesterol levels.
Joint pain: The anti-inflammatory properties of guggulu helps to reduce joint pain and localised inflammation. External application of herbal preparations which contain this resin help to reduce pain and inflammation. This gum is the main ingredient of ayurvedic preparations which are used in arthritis, sciatica and joint pains.
Digestive disorders: This resin increases appetite and normalises digestive system. It helps to relieve indigestion, bloating and flatulence. It acts as liver rejuvenator and detoxifies liver. It is also helpful in eliminating haemorrhoids, constipation and intestinal parasites
Respiratory disorders: Guggulu boosts the lung health and is very useful in treatment of chronic cough, bronchitis, asthma and tuberculosis.
Disorders of Urinary System: Ayurveda acharyas recommend this resin to treat urinary calculi and cystitis
Diabetes : In texts of Ayurveda aged guggulu is recommended for diabetes and obesity. Since use of this resin boosts weight loss, it automatically helps to control elevated blood sugar. Also aged guggulu has blood sugar lowering properties.
In Men Health: Ayurvedic texts explain use of guggulu in Vajikarana Chapter. They praise the aphrodisiac properties of this gum. This resin is the best ayurvedic remedy for erectile dysfunction. Since it helps in weight loss and diabetes, this herbal part can be used in erectile dysfunction due to diabetes and erectile dysfunction due to obesity. It boosts male libido and new guggulu increases sperm count. Hence this resin is used in Ayurvedic Vajikarana Therapy.
In Female Health: Guggulu is recommended in female infertility and menstrual disorders. This can be used in ayurvedic treatment for PCOS or PCOD.