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Ayurvedic Herbs A-Z

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Ayurvedic Medicine


Acorus Calmaus


Botanical Name: ACORUS CALAMUS

Sanskrit Name: Vacha

Family Name: ARACEAE

Latin Name: : Acorus calamus- Radix (Araceae)


Vernacular names: Sanskrit - Vacha; Hindi - Bach; English - Sweet Flag; Unani - Buch; Tamil - Vasamber; Persian - Agar turki; Japanese - Shobu; Chinese - Shui chang; German - Kalmus


Habitat: North Temperate and subtropical regions up to 2200m altitude in Himalayas.

Constituents: Essential oil- acorin, calamine, acoretin, asarone.1

MIND: Its primary application is to open the mind, improve concentration, clarity and speech. It is often part of a formula made to treat depression where there is mental ama.

This acrid root is also used in developmental problems in children and where there maybe speech difficulty post stroke. It encourages the flow of udana and pranavayu. By nourishing sadhaka pitta it specifically strengthens the ability of the mind to receive information and recall from memory. It ctually scrapes mental ama and stagnation from the subtle channels of the mind.2

GIT: Calms the nerves in the GIT, prevents fermentation and clears excess kapha from the intestines; dyspepsia, flatulence, borborygmus. Vacha regulates samana vayu and kledaka kapha. High doses can cause vomiting.

LUNGS: Clears damp, wet coughs from the lungs. This is also connected with its affinity for the throat- it clears 'obstructions' from the throat. Excellent remedy for sinus congestion, nasal polyps and rhinitis from kapha aggravation.3

URINE: Used traditionally for urinary gravel and infections by removing the kapha deposits.

Contraindications: Not in pregnancy or breastfeeding. Use for one month on and then have one month off.

Ayurvedic Energetics
Rasa (taste): Pungent, Bitter, Astringent
Virya (action): Heating
Vipaka (post-digestive effect): Pungent
Guna (quality): Dry, Light and Penetrating
Dosha effect: Vata-, Kapha-, P+
Dhatu (tissue): Plasma, Muscle, Fat, Nerve, Reproductive
Srota (channel): Nervous, Digestive, Circulatory, Respiratory, Reproductive

Ayurvedic Action
AYURVEDIC ACTION: Deepana- awakens digestive fire, Pachana- digests toxins, Lekhan- remover of residues, Kriminashaka- destroys worms, Unmadaghna- benefits emotional problems, Apasmaraghna- used to treat epilepsy, Rasayana- rejuvenative to the mind, Sirovirechan- purges the orfices of the head of kapha and ama
(Charaka, Sushruta, Bhavaprakasha)

1 Paranjpe
2 Paranjpe
3 Frawley and Lad


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