Ayurveda’s comprehensive knowledge and application of herbs is second to none. Of the myriad
herbs and herbal formulas used in Ayurveda, Manjistha is often renowned as being the ultimate blood
purifier. As such, it acts on the deeper tissues, particularly plasma/lymph (rasa) and blood (rakta),
helping to cleanse and purify the channels through which both nutrients and toxins flow. If these
channels are blocked, then the needed transport of nutrients and toxins is hindered, initiating the
process of disease. Manjistha, which translates to “bright red,” has a powerful purifying effect on the
blood, and much like the vine-like nature of the plant, it climbs its way through the circulatory system,
clearing the channels and facilitating healthy blood and lymph flow.
Due to its bitter and astringent taste, Manjistha possesses a strong detoxifying effect. Its cooling
energy makes it particularly beneficial for blood and skin conditions related to excess Pitta (the
constitution of fire). Many forms of skin disease, such as rashes, itching, eczema, psoriasis, dermatitis,
and acne, can be attributed to blockages in the blood and lymph channels, blockages which Manjistha
helps to alleviate. In addition, it can be useful to in supporting the female reproductive system and
relieving menstrual pain. When viewed through the lens of the doshas (constitutions), Manjistha helps
to alleviate Pitta (fire) and Kapha (water) constitutions, but it can aggravate Vata (air). These benefits
are amongst the main benefits which Manjistha is known for, but the list of additional benefits is vast
As it is now early May in the northeastern United States, we are transitioning from Kapha
season (late winter/early spring) into Pitta season (late spring/summer). Tendencies for Kapha and Pitta
dosha to become aggravated/imbalanced are greater, especially for those who are Kapha and/or Pitta
constitution. For such individuals, Manjistha might be an excellent supplement to support a Kapha-
balancing and/or Pitta-balancing diet and lifestyle. As is true with all Ayurvedic remedies, it is important
to communicate any diet/lifestyle/herbal considerations with your healthcare provider, especially if you
are taking any medications. It is also important to consult with an Ayurvedic practitioner to determine
your birth constitution and current imbalances, as well as safe and practical approaches to creating and
sustaining the balance that best suits your particular constitution based on characteristics unique to
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