Indian Spikenard botanical name is Nardostachys Jatamansi, some other common names are Indian Valerian, Spikenard, Muskroot, Balchar, Valeriana jatamansi. This plant is mainly found in the alpine Himalayas especially at higher altitudes extending eastward from Kumaon to Sikkim and Bhutan.
Indian Spikenard is one of the first herb 12 herbs mentioned in the earliest European medical work and has been used in India for over 3000 years. It is an excellent substitute for the herb Valerian, botanically known as Valeriana.
What is Indian Spikenard?
Indian Spikenard is also known as Indian Valerian, it has long, woody rhizomes or an underground stem producing roots covered with fibers and small bunches of pale, pink, or blue flowers. The dried rhizomes and roots of this plant constitute the drug. The Indian name Jatamansi refers to the bearded appearance of rhizomes.
It contains a volatile oil that contains an unidentified ester, alcohol, and two alkaloids. The rhizomes of the plant contain jatamansi acid and essential oil, which has the same uses as the rhizomes. It is also used in preparations of medicines because of its aromatic.
The leaves are large ovals, toothed around the edges, they are in two types radical as well as cauline. The radical leaves are large 15–22 cm, and six to eight in number, cauline leaves are sessile 2.0 cm × 0.6 cm in size, and in three pairs.
The roots are dark brown in color and densely covered with the remains of old leaves, looks like a heavy beard, that’s why its name is jatamansi. They are 6–9 cm long with about 20–30- cm-long. The roots are mainly used in Ayurveda for their medicinal benefits.
Flowers and Fruits
Flowers are pinkish-red to bluish-white, the flowering shoot is 30–40 cm high and bears 40–50 flowers. The flowering time is June to August, Fruit is covered with 4-mm-long hairs and the fruiting time is September to October.
What are the Benefits of Nardostachys Jatamansi?
Nardostachys Jatamansi nervine tonic, hypotensive, antiseptic, stomachic, carminative, tranquilizer, sedative, anti-bacterial, antispasmodic, and stimulant properties. The roots of the plants are aromatic, stimulant, bitter tonic, and antiseptic. It is useful in counteracting spasmodic disorder and facilitates secretion or excretion by the natural passage or pores of the body, including urine.
Here are some health benefits of Nardostachys Jatamansi
For Heart Palpitation
It is a good stimulant and hence useful in treating palpitation of the heart.
For Intestinal Worms
This herb is beneficial in treating intestinal worms, it can be given to children with a purgative like Jalap. For treating threadworms, an enema made of an infusion of the rhizomes is suggested.
For Low Blood Pressure
It helps to treat low blood pressure, nervousness, and intermittent pulse.
For Nervous and Convulsive Disorders
Indian Spikenard can be used in the treatment of several nervous and convulsive disorders such as hysteria, epileptic fits, and some disturbance caused by menopause. A very small dose soothes the nervous system and acts as a tranquilizer.
For Menstrual Disorder
The herb helps in menstruation and regulates the menstrual cycle. It is especially useful in dysmenorrhea or painful and difficult menstruation.
For Respiratory Disorders
Indian Spikenard is beneficial in the treatment of bronchitis and other disorder of the respiratory system.
It is a well-known herb for hair tonics, it is an important and useful ingredient for many hair washes and hair oils.
How to Use Indian Spikenard?
Dosage and uses depend upon the health problems and conditions or as recommended by an Ayurvedic doctor. The general recommended dosage is 3-6 grams of Indian Spikenard / Nardostachys Jatamansi daily once a day.
Here are some dosages and uses of Indian Spikenard / Nardostachys Jatamansi
- Take powders of Indian Spikenard root and mixed with Brahmi, Ashwagandha, and Acorus Calamus Root helps to give relief from mental stress.
- Take powders of Indian Spikenard root and mixed with Trailing Eclipta Leaf and Indian Gooseberry, helps to cure premature grey hairs.
- Indian Spikenard root powder mixed with Ashwagandha root powder, helps to treat insomnia and increase energy level.
Side Effects of the Indian Valerian / Nardostachys Jatamansi
All Ayurveda herbs are plant-based, and they don’ have any side effects but they may react with some allopathy or homeopathy medicine. It is better to consult the doctor if you are on any medications or have unique health issues.
Some side effects are mentioned below
- Consult the doctor if you are breastfeeding.
- Do not take without a doctor’s prescription if you are pregnant.
- If you are on diabetes or on hypertension medication. Consult first the doctor before consuming.
- If you are suffering from kidney disease, consult the doctor first before consuming Indian Spikenard / Nardostachys Jatamansi
- Do not take Indian Spikenard / Nardostachys Jatamansi with liquor, it may interact with it and cause drowsiness.
Herbal Remedy for Hair Fall and Hair Growth
This herbal remedy is very effective to stop hair fall and promoting hair growth because all the ingredients are herbal, so no side effects.
- Indian Spikenard Root Powder – 2 tbsp.
- Indian Gooseberry Powder – 2 tbsp.
- Trailing Eclipta Leaf Powder – 2 tbsp.
- Aloe Vera Powder – 1 tbsp.
- Hibiscus Flower Powder – 2 tbsp.
- Red Onion Juice – 1 tbsp.
- Onion Seed Powder – 1tbsp.
- Take a bowl and add all the ingredients and mix them well.
- Make a paste with help of water.
- Apply the paste to the scalp and hair and leave for 30-45 minutes.
- Wash the hair with normal water and let them dry.
- Wash the hair with soft shampoo after one day of the pack.