Ayurvedic Hurbs for Heart

Heart is a vital organ in the body, hence any disease affecting this organ is of a serious concern. According to ayurveda, a holistic approach to heart health is required to nourish the emotional heart as well as the physical heart. Ayurveda treats the disease but mainly it concentrates on prevention of diseases with appropriate diet & life style. For last few decades heart disease is a threatening problems not only in India but in whole world and it is increasing rapidly and allopathy doesn’t have satisfactory treatment for such life threatening conditions.

Heart disease has been a major health problem for society. Western life style is responsible for enhancing this disease. Eating incompatible food, sleeping during the day, keeping awake during night, consuming alcohol, smoking and mental stress hatredness & jealousy make people prone to heart diseases. Every 20second, someone in the world has a heart attack. Every 34 seconds, someone in the world dies of heart diseases that include diseased vessels, structural problems and blood clots. Most common types of cardiovascular diseases-Coronary artery diseases are angina, myocardial infraction, cardiomyopathy, high blood pressure, cardiac arrest, congestive heart failure, arrhythmia, peripheral artery disease, congenital heart disease, valvular disease, carditis, aortic aneurysms, venous thrombosis etc.

What causes heart diseases According to Acharya Charaka- consuption of food having heavy, dry, bitter and astringent qualities,worry, excessive excercise, withholding natural urges, stress and strain, misuse of purifying procedures and external injury are the main causative factors. Risk factors of heart disease are high blood pressure, smoking, diabetes, obesity, high blood cholesterol, poor diet, excessive alcohol consumption, family history of CVD, psychosocial factors.

1. ARJUNA ( Terminalia arjuna)

Other name–Arjuna , Dhavala, Kakubha

Arjuna is a unique herb that helps maintain a healthy heart and reduces the effects of stress and nervousness. The bark of Arjuna can be used for all kinds of heart diseases. Every person having heart related problems must take Arjuna under the guidance of a qualified Ayurvedic Doctor. The primary benefit of arjuna is improvement of cardiac muscle function and improved pumping Activity of the heart. The bark of the tree contains natural alkaloids which are very useful natural cure for heart problems. The bark of Arjuna is useful as an anti-ischemic and cardio protective agent in hypertension and in ischemic heart disease, especially in disturbed cardiac rhythm, angina or myocardial infarction.

Co-enzyme Q-10 present in arjuna bark strengthens the heart muscle and normalizes blood pressure. It prevents accumulation of fluid and thereby reduces oedema. Due to hypolipidemic activity and also the diuretic property it acts against hypertension. Regular use of it after just recovering from heart attack, reduces the chances of further attack. Research suggests that compounds in arjuna called saponin glycosides enhance heart's pumping action. It is rich in glycosides, antioxidants and minerals such as calcium, magnesium, zinc and copper. The calcium and magnesium in Arjuna may play a role in improving muscle function. The antioxidants in the bark may prevent heart disease. Ksheerpak formation is more beneficial as combination of arjuna and milk results in reducing roughness of arjuna and also decrease kapha potency of milk.

2. HRITPATRI ( Digitalis purpurea)

Other name - digitalis, foxglove

Major active principles of Hritpatri are digoxin, gitoxin, digitoxin glycosides. Digitalis is widely used in treatment of dropsy, a condition associated with congestive heart failure. Digitalis has direct effect on myocardial contractility and electrophysiological properties. Digitalis is mainly use in CHF, Valvular diseases, cardiac irregularities.

It increases cardiac output and reduces cardiac size. It increases effective refractory period. It affects SA node, causing direct stimulation.

3.VANAPALANDU- Urginea indica (Indian Squill)

Other name- Jangle pyaj, seaonion, scilla

It provides strength to heart and stimulate the heart muscle. It reduces cardiac oedema. It has diuretic property.

Active principles of Indian squill are cardiac glycosides. Scillaren A and scillaren B.

4. KARVEER (Nerium indicum)

Other name- Nerium oleander

Its working property of heart is same as digitalis. It’s provide strength to heart in adequate amount, but in large it act as poison. In adequate dose it works as blood purifier.

Specific Formulation –Karveeradya oil, Karveeryoga

Active principles - cardiac glycosides- Neriodorin, neriodorein, karabin(in root, root bark, seed), scopoletin, scopolin( in bark), Oleandrin(in leaves-main cardiac chemical), Gluco oleandrin, flavanoides rutin, neriodin, nerium D, quercetin, adigoside.

Part used - root, root bark, seed

5.TAMBULA (Piper betle)

Other name - Pan, betle

Cardiac glycosides are strong and possess direct action on the heart, kidneys and is used as diuretic and for lowering the blood pressure.

Active principles or tambula are Eugenol, chavibetal, hydroxychavicol.

It’s increase the power of heart and slow down the heart rate. It decrease the blood pressure. It used in cardiac weakness and cardiac depressant. It provides strength to the heart and tone up the cardiovascular system. It’s substitute of the digitalis. Used part- leaves

6. KARPOORA (Cinnamomum camphora)

Other name - Camphor, ghanshar, Chandra.

It provides strength to the heart. It is a great stimulant for the heart and the whole circulatory system. It has diuretic properties. It constricts the blood capillaries thus increases blood pressure. It is used to stimulate the heart muscle and protect heart. It is used in cardiac failure.

Active principles of Karpoora are Terpenes, menthol, thymol, phenol, salicylic acid, naphthanol.

7. Gulab ( Rosa centifolia)

Other name - Rosa, shatapatri

Effect - Cardiac tonic.

It is very useful in heart disorders and is also useful in blood disorders.

Active principles of Gulab are phenyl ethamol, geranyl acetate, geraniol, linalool, benzyl alcohol, nerol, riboflavin etc.

8.ASHWAGANDHA (Withania somnifera )

Other name – Varahakarni, Ashagandh

Ashwagandha is a natural herbal heart care remedy. It is an effective herb that controls hypertension, anxiety and stress which helps to heal heart problems.

Ashwagandha is extremely useful in improving natural resistance against stress situation which is regarded as the most prominent risk factor for heart disease.

The main constituents in ashwagandha include withanolides and other alkaloids –cuseohygrine, anahygrine, tropine, anaferine etc.

9. PUSHKARMOOL (Inula Racemosa)

Other name-Padmapatra, Kasmir, kustabheda

It is used in preventing heart attack. The sesquiterpene lactones from the herb improves rhythm of the heart, prevents anginal episodes, and controls cholesterol levels. The root powder prevented ST-segment depression and T-wave inversion as observed in the post-exercise electrocardiogram.

10. GOTUKOLA (Mandukparni)

Other name- manduki, brahami.

Gotu Kola is also called Indian Pennywort or Centella asiatica. Gotu Kola supports cardiovascular and circulatory health. It improves blood circulation. Researchers claim that it supports a healthy heart, slows heart rate and lowers blood pressure. Gotu Kola has been shown to stimulate the circulatory system and support blood vessels and capillaries. Gotu Kola also lowers cholesterol from the blood, reducing blood pressure and the chance of heart disease.

11. GUGGULU (Commiphora mukul)

Guggul is a resin extracted from the Commiphora Mukul tree. This resin known as Shuddha Guggulu has been used in Ayurvedic medicine for rejuvenation, cleansing blood vessels obesity, Ancient ayurvedic texts refer to guggul as the treatment for medroga and high cholesterol. It has a positive effect in preventing arteriosclerosis, or narrowing of the arteries along with its cholesterol lowering properties. It is a heart tonic that strengthens the heart. Guggul increases HDL cholesterol, lowers LDL cholesterol and lowers triglyceride levels. It’s lipid regulating and immunomodulating properties are very beneficial maintaining healthy heart.

Guggul is an age-old remedy used by Ayurvedic exponents for preventing & treating angina pectoris and its complications.

12. RUDRAKSHA (Elaeocarpus ganitrus)

Other name - bhutnasan

Rudraksha beads are considered to control blood pressure and stress. It controls high or low blood pressure, if genuine and properly charged rudraksha beads are used. It is a traditional natural remedy for high blood pressure. Some people also use externally for reducing blood pressure and some use it by boiling in milk in copper vessel. Rudraksha beads have several amazing power due to their electromagnetic character.

This electromagnetic character empower the beads to cure the human body medically as well as spiritually.

In addition to these herbs, following factors can prevent cardiac disorders:

Life Style Modification- Balardh vyayam, Sadvritta palan, Avoid divaswapan, Avoid ratrijagran.

Ralaxation Therapy- As daily routine -Yoga, pranayama, chanting of mantras

Diet- As disease related to rasavaha strotas treatment aspect of rasavaha should be taken into consideration as-langhan, apatarpan, pachan, laghubhojan, kalabhojan, ushnodakpana, avoid oily and fast food etc.

1. Prof. & Head of Dravya Gun Department,

2. P. G. Scholar,

Madan Mohan Malviya Govt. Ayuvedic College,

Udaipur (Rajasthan)

Mob.: 9983557708 drkaushal2002@yahoo.com