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Asthisamharaka (Vitis quadrangularis): A Medicinal Plant with Promising Health Benefits and Therapeutic Potential

Introduction: Asthisamharaka (Vitis quadrangularis), also known as the Devil's Backbone or Hadjod, is a medicinal plant that has been widely used in traditional medicine systems for centuries. With its origins in India, this plant belongs to the Vitaceae family and is characterized by its unique four-angled stem. Hadjod holds significant importance in various cultures due to its potential health benefits and therapeutic properties. Its traditional use can be traced back to ancient Ayurvedic texts, where it is highly regarded for its ability to promote bone health and treat musculoskeletal disorders. Historically, Hadjod has been used as a natural remedy for fractures, bone loss, and joint-related conditions. In Ayurveda, it is classified as a 'Asthisandhaneeya' herb, meaning it has the potential to strengthen bones, promote fracture healing, and improve overall bone health. The plant's name, "Hadjod," is derived from the Hindi word "hadjod,"

Narikela Lavana: A Classical Formulation in Ayurveda


Ayurveda, the ancient Indian system of medicine, encompasses a wealth of knowledge and wisdom in the form of classical formulations. These formulations are time-tested combinations of herbs, minerals, and other natural ingredients that have been used for centuries to promote health and well-being. One such formulation is Narikela Lavana, which holds a significant place in Ayurvedic texts. This article explores the unique properties of Narikela Lavana and its correlation with Parinaam Shoola, a condition closely resembling peptic ulcers according to modern parameters.

Overview of Narikela Lavana:

Narikela Lavana, as the name suggests, is a classical Ayurvedic formulation that contains only two ingredients: Narikela (coconut) and Saindhava Lavana (rock salt). This simple yet potent combination has gained recognition for its therapeutic effects on various ailments. It has been highly regarded in traditional Ayurvedic practice due to its efficacy and the references found in ancient texts. These texts serve as valuable sources of knowledge, guiding practitioners in the use of Narikela Lavana for specific indications.

Significance in Ancient Texts:

Narikela Lavana finds its mention in prominent Ayurvedic samhitas (texts), including Chakradatta, Vangsena, Bhavaprakash, and Rasa Tarangini. These texts hold immense importance in Ayurvedic literature as they provide comprehensive insights into the formulations, their indications, and therapeutic applications. The inclusion of Narikela Lavana in these revered texts signifies its significance and highlights its historical usage for various ailments, particularly Parinaam Shoola, which closely resembles the modern understanding of peptic ulcers.

By delving into these ancient texts, one can explore the detailed descriptions and methodologies associated with Narikela Lavana, gaining a deeper understanding of its potential benefits and how it has been traditionally employed in Ayurvedic practice. This ancient knowledge, passed down through generations, continues to influence contemporary Ayurvedic practitioners and researchers in their exploration of this classical formulation.

In the following sections, we will examine the ingredients of Narikela Lavana, its correlation with Parinaam Shoola (peptic ulcers), and the therapeutic benefits it offers based on both ancient wisdom and modern perspectives.

Ingredients of Narikela Lavana:

Narikela (Coconut):

Narikela, commonly known as coconut, is a versatile ingredient used extensively in Ayurveda for its numerous therapeutic properties. It is considered a treasure trove of nutrients and has been recognized for its nourishing and healing qualities. Here are some key aspects of Narikela's therapeutic properties:

Cooling and Soothing:

Coconut possesses cooling properties, making it beneficial for pacifying excess heat and Pitta dosha imbalances in the body. It helps in soothing inflammation and promoting a sense of calm.

Lubricating and Moisturizing:

The natural oils present in coconut provide lubrication and moisture to various tissues and organs, including the gastrointestinal tract. This lubricating effect can support the healing process in cases of ulcers and other digestive disorders.


Coconut is rich in essential nutrients such as vitamins, minerals, amino acids, and healthy fats. These nutrients nourish the body, promote tissue repair, and support overall well-being.

Saindhava Lavana (Rock Salt):

Saindhava Lavana, also known as rock salt or Himalayan salt, is a mineral-rich salt that holds a special place in Ayurveda. It is considered superior to common table salt due to its therapeutic qualities. Here are the notable properties and actions attributed to Saindhava Lavana:

Digestive Stimulant:

Saindhava Lavana has a mild digestive stimulant effect, which can help improve digestion and alleviate digestive discomfort.

Balancing Electrolytes:

This mineral-rich salt contains essential electrolytes like sodium, potassium, calcium, and magnesium. It helps maintain the electrolyte balance in the body, supporting proper cellular function and overall health.


Saindhava Lavana has detoxifying properties that aid in the elimination of toxins from the body. It helps cleanse the digestive system and promotes a healthy gut environment.


Despite being a salt, Saindhava Lavana has an alkalizing effect on the body. It helps balance the pH levels and reduce acidity, which can be beneficial for conditions like peptic ulcers.


The combination of Narikela (coconut) and Saindhava Lavana (rock salt) in Narikela Lavana synergizes their individual qualities, creating a formulation that addresses various health concerns, including Parinaam Shoola (peptic ulcers). The cooling and soothing properties of coconut, along with the digestive stimulant and detoxifying effects of Saindhava Lavana, contribute to the formulation's potential therapeutic benefits.

Therapeutic Benefits of Narikela Lavana:

Narikela Lavana, with its combination of Narikela (coconut) and Saindhava Lavana (rock salt), offers several therapeutic effects that may be beneficial in the management of peptic ulcers and related conditions. While specific scientific studies on Narikela Lavana for peptic ulcers may be limited, the individual properties of its ingredients provide insights into its potential efficacy. Additionally, the ancient texts provide indications and benefits of Narikela Lavana beyond peptic ulcers. Here are the therapeutic benefits associated with Narikela Lavana:

Soothing and Healing Properties:

Narikela (coconut) possesses cooling and soothing properties that may help reduce inflammation and promote the healing of ulcers in the digestive tract. It can provide relief from pain and discomfort associated with peptic ulcers.

Digestive Support:

Saindhava Lavana (rock salt) present in Narikela Lavana acts as a mild digestive stimulant, aiding in the digestion of food and reducing digestive discomfort often experienced by individuals with peptic ulcers.

Lubrication and Protection:

The lubricating properties of Narikela (coconut) can provide a protective coating to the gastrointestinal lining, reducing friction and irritation in the presence of ulcers. This may support the healing process and prevent further damage.

Balancing Pitta Dosha:

Ayurveda considers an imbalance of Pitta dosha as a contributing factor in peptic ulcers. Narikela Lavana, with its cooling and Pitta-pacifying properties, helps restore the balance of Pitta dosha and promote overall digestive health.

Additional Indications:

The ancient texts mention other indications and benefits of Narikela Lavana, such as its use in improving appetite, enhancing digestion, and managing conditions like hyperacidity, gastritis, and abdominal pain.


It is important to note that while Narikela Lavana has a long-standing traditional use and potential therapeutic benefits, scientific studies specifically evaluating its efficacy for peptic ulcers may be limited. Further research, including clinical trials, is needed to validate its effectiveness in modern medical parameters.

However, the individual ingredients of Narikela Lavana, i.e., coconut and rock salt, have been studied for their various health benefits. For example, coconut oil has demonstrated anti-inflammatory and ulcer-protective effects in certain studies, which may indirectly support the use of Narikela Lavana for peptic ulcers. Rock salt, on the other hand, has been traditionally used in Ayurveda to improve digestion and alleviate digestive discomfort.

While the traditional knowledge of Narikela Lavana from ancient texts provides insights into its broader therapeutic applications, it is important to consult with qualified Ayurvedic practitioners or healthcare professionals for personalized advice and guidance regarding its use for specific conditions, including peptic ulcers.

Dosage and Administration:

The dosage and administration of Narikela Lavana may vary depending on various factors such as the individual's constitution, age, severity of symptoms, and the guidance of an Ayurvedic practitioner. Here are some general guidelines:


The recommended dosage of Narikela Lavana is typically around 1-2 grams (approximately ¼ to ½ teaspoon) per day. However, it is important to consult with an Ayurvedic practitioner for the appropriate dosage specific to your condition.


Narikela Lavana is usually taken orally. It is traditionally consumed by directly ingesting the powdered mixture of coconut and rock salt. You can either swallow it with water or mix it with warm water or honey for easier consumption.


It is advisable to take Narikela Lavana either on an empty stomach or after meals, as per the guidance of an Ayurvedic practitioner.

Precautions and Contraindications:

While Narikela Lavana is generally safe for consumption, it is important to keep the following precautions and contraindications in mind:

Allergies: Individuals with known allergies or hypersensitivity to coconut or rock salt should avoid the use of Narikela Lavana.

Excessive Dosage: As with any Ayurvedic formulation, excessive dosage of Narikela Lavana may lead to adverse effects. It is crucial to adhere to the recommended dosage and seek guidance from a qualified practitioner.

Pregnancy and Lactation: Pregnant and lactating women should consult with their healthcare provider or an Ayurvedic practitioner before using Narikela Lavana.


It is always recommended to consult with a qualified Ayurvedic practitioner or healthcare professional before starting any new herbal formulation or treatment to ensure its suitability and safety for your individual health needs.


In conclusion, Narikela Lavana is a classical formulation in Ayurveda consisting of two main ingredients: Narikela (coconut) and Saindhava Lavana (rock salt). This formulation has been mentioned in ancient texts such as Chakradatta, Vangsena, Bhavaprakash, and Rasa Tarangini, highlighting its historical significance and traditional use.

Parinaam Shoola, a condition described in Ayurvedic texts, is broadly correlated with peptic ulcers based on modern parameters. Narikela Lavana has been traditionally used to address Parinaam Shoola or conditions resembling peptic ulcers. The soothing and cooling properties of Narikela, along with the digestive support provided by Saindhava Lavana, make Narikela Lavana potentially beneficial in managing peptic ulcers.

Given its historical significance, traditional use, and potential therapeutic properties, Narikela Lavana may be considered as part of a comprehensive treatment approach for peptic ulcers. It is important to consult with qualified Ayurvedic practitioners or healthcare professionals to determine the appropriate usage and dosage based on individual needs and conditions.



The information provided here is for informational purposes only and should not replace professional medical advice. Always consult a qualified healthcare practitioner for personalized guidance.

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