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Know your Herbs

Gojihva

The scientific name of Gojihva is Onosma bracteatum and it belongs to family Boraginaceae.  The plant has been used in Ayurveda to treat jaundice, wound, constipation, heart muscle weakness and many more ailments.

It is a small shrub around grows nearly 3 to 5 meters in height. It grows mostly in mountain region of India and the Middle East and the other parts of Asia and Europe. The stem is simple and the entire plant is covered with hairs. The leaves are lanceolate and have nodules at their bottom sides which make them appear like a cow’s tongue. This gives origin to the name of the plant as Gojihva. It bears purple velvet trumpet-like flowers that exist in clusters. The fruits are brown in colour and oval in shape. The leaves and flowers are used for various medicinal purposes and are slightly sweet in taste.

Other names of Gojihva are Cow’s tongue, Lisanussoar and Gaozaban.

Chemical constituents of Gojihva include a variety of glycosides, flavonoids, tannins, phenolic compounds and carbohydrates, other potential components are ketones, alkaloids, lipids, naphthoquinones, naphthazarins and flavones like shikonins and onosmins.

Gojihva shows certain pharmacological activities such as anti-pyretic, anti-spasmodic, demulcent, pectoral, tonic, refrigerant, alternative, aphrodisiac, immuno-modulator, anti-diarrhoeal, anti-cancer, anti-oxidant, anti-microbial, anti-pyretic, anti-tussive, and diuretic properties.

It is a useful herb for the treatment of bladder pain, improvement in kidney functions and reduction in irritation, rheumatism and palpitation of heart. It is the most frequently used ingredients in the Unani and Ayurvedic health supplements especially because it provides calmness against restlessness and promotes or restores cardiac functions.

Benefits of Gojihva

  • Beneficial for Oral Health: A condition that causes painful swelling and sores inside the mouth is known as stomatitis. Gojivha plant heals these lesions.
     
  • Useful in Jaundice: Leaves of Gojivha plant are used in treatment of jaundice which is caused by build up of bilirubin, a waste material in blood.
     
  • Eases Constipation:  Infrequent bowel movements make the stools hard to pass. Stools may be hard and dry during constipation. Extract of leaves of Gojivha can also treat constipation.
     
  • Helps in Psychiatric conditions: A wide range of conditions that affect mood, thinking and behaviour such as clinical depression, anxiety disorder, bipolar disorder come under the category of psychiatric conditions. Leaves of Gojivha can be used to treat these conditions.
     
  • Helps in Epileptic conditions: Epilepsy can occur at any age. Gojihva leaves have been found beneficial in treatment of epilepsy as well.
     
  • Improves Respiratory Health: Flowers and fruits of Onosma bracteatum can be used to obtain relief in rhinitis and cough. This plant relieves symptoms of sneezing, runny nose, and red, watery and itchy eyes which may be accompanied with fever.
     
  • Improves Heart Health: Fast beating, fluttering or pounding heart can be triggered by stress, medication or a medical condition. Extract of plant can provide relief in palpitation of heart.
     
  • Improves Skin Health: Eruptions on skin may appear as an adverse reaction to certain drug. Powder of root of Gojivha plant can be utilized in treating cutaneous eruptions.
     
  • Improves Health of Kidneys and bladder: Gojivha plant extract can relieve irritation in urinary bladder. Being diuretic in nature, the leaf extract promotes production of urine and increase excretion of water from the body. Gojivha extract also eases difficulty during micturition or the action of urinating.
     

This plant serves as a renal tonic and its anti inflammatory properties can be put to use to provide relief in inflammation of kidneys which is present in nephritis as a result of infections and toxins. It can be used to prevent further damage to kidneys in kidney disease via inflammation.

It is safe to consume Gojihva and has no known adverse effects even in higher doses generally. However, taking this herb in a regulated amount is still recommended as in Nephrogold Tablets.

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