Shilajit is a humus, rich blackish substance which is useful in many diseases and serves as a potent tonic. Asphaltum (Shilajit) is the most important drug in Ayurvedic system of medicine. Its Sanskrit meaning is the conqueror of mountains and destroyer of weakness.
In Charak Samhita, shilajit is described as a product of 4 minerals- silver, gold, copper and iron whereas Sushruta Samhita included 2 more minerals lead and zinc. Charak Samhita described Shilajit in a chapter on Rasayana (Rejuvenation therapy). According to Charaka, there is no imbalance in the universe which is not effectively cured by shilajit if administered in appropriate doses. It is not just for the sick person but when administered to a healthy person, it produces immense energy.
According to Sushruta Samhita, obesity can be cured by taking this with honey, barley etc. When gradually taken, it tends to improve strength. It is the best rejuvenator according to Ashtanga Hrdayam.
Traditionally people used to take it with pure milk to enhance energy and spiritual power.
Duration of Shilajit
- 7 weeks- Excellent results
- 3 weeks- moderate effects
- 1 week- very little effects
Qualities of Shilajit – not very sour, astringent taste, undergoes pungent taste after digestion, neither too hot nor too cold. Its potency increases by impregnating it with Kashaya of herbs which alleviate Vata, Pitta and Kapha.
Varieties of Shilajit – Stones of metals in the mountains get heated up by the sun and the exudate that comes out from them in the form of clean, smooth gum is called Shilajitu.
- Shilajit obtained from the stone containing gold is sweet and bitter in taste, pungent in vipaka.
- Shilajit obtained from the stone containing silver- pungent in taste, white, cooling, sweet in vipaka
- Shilajiit obtained from the stone containing copper- bitter in taste, hot and pungent in vipaka.
- The exudate which looks like the gum of guggulu is bitter and saline, cooling, pungent in vipaka is derived from the stone containing iron. This is considered best among all the varieties of shilajit.
- In diseases caused by vata-pitta imbalance- shilajit obtained from gold stone is the best.
- In diseases caused by kapha- pitta imbalance- shilajit obtained from silver stone is the best.
- In diseases caused by the imbalance of all 3 doshas- iron containing stones of shilajit are beneficial.
Modern scientific research on shilajit shows that shilajit is a mixture of organic humic substances and it possesses anti-oxidant properties. It contains 2 classes of compounds – low molecular weight bioactive compounds such as- dibenzo-alpha- pyrones, which act as active substances and the other low molecular weight fulvic and humic acids that act as carrier molecules for in vivo transportation of these bioactive molecules.
Now shilajit is available in capsules.
Some tests to detect the pure Shilajit are-
- Take Shilajit capsule and dissolve it in water. Do not dissolve it by stirring. It will dissolve in water automatically within a second as Shilajit is highly soluble in water. Pure Shilajit is soluble in water whereas impure Shilajit will not dissolve. This test concludes that Shilajit capsule is 100% pure.
- Pure Shilajit is insoluble in alcohol. Take Shilajit capsule and dissolve it in 2 spoons of alcohol. Pure Shilajit will not dissolve in alcohol.
- Take metal mercury, add Shilajit capsule and add some water to it. Mix it thoroughly for 1 minute. All particles of Mercury will completely be absorbed by Shilajit. This test proves that pure Shilajit has a property of absorbing metals and pesticides in the body.
Uses of Shilajit Capsules
- It is used in Premaha i.e. in diabetes as it has various anti-oxidant properties. It is combined with neem, turmeric, black pepper in diabetes. It counteracts diabetes and regulates blood sugar levels. It has the ability to improve the functioning of the pancreas.
- Shilajit has fulvic acid that helps to enhance red blood cells production.
- It is the best memory tonic. It clears the blockage that occurs in the brain and supports the growth of enzymes naturally.
- It is considered as the best tonic for men. Various sexual disorders of men like- low sperm count, erectile dysfunction and premature ejaculation can be cured. It is also used to treat various prostate problems by bringing down the elevated PSA levels quickly. Moreover, it helps in maintaining urinal flow and balances the testosterone hormone. It is administered with Ashwagandha, Gokhru for male reproductive disorders.
- Regular consumption of Shilajit capsules helps in getting rid of Arthritis problem as it has pain relieving and anti-inflammatory properties, therefore, Shilajit capsules can be used in chronic joint pains.
- Shilajit capsules also help in keeping the kidneys fit as it has a property of absorbing various metals and pesticides.
- It is the best anti-oxidant as it contains fulvic acid. It is the best anti-aging and herbal remedy which can be consumed by persons of all age groups. Also useful in facial blemishes.
- Protects the nervous system including the brain and the nerves from getting damaged by free radicals.
- Shilajit is administered along with cancer treatment as it has the ability to dissolve tumors.
- It also improves digestion by helping the liver to secrete juices and enzymes naturally thus strengthens the digestion. It is a potent anti-ulcer agent.
- In female reproductive disorders, it is combined with Mulethi, Shatavari etc.
- In fluid retention, it is given with Punarnava.
- Shilajit capsules help to accelerate the processes of protein and nucleic acid metabolism.
- It helps in purifying the blood thus good for skin problems.
- Shilajit capsules help in promoting the movement of minerals especially phosphorus, calcium and magnesium into muscle tissues.
- Its regular use reduces fat.
Side effects of Shilajit capsules
- When someone takes iron supplements along with shilajit, it could lead to excess iron in the body.
- In rare cases, it can aggravate gout or increase the blood pressure.
- Low quality of shilajit capsules can cause certain side effects.
- Dizziness, nausea, increased heart rate are seen in some cases.
One must consult an Ayurvedic physician before taking Shilajit Capsules because of its hot potency. Pregnant and lactating mothers must avoid Shilajit Capsules. It may not be suitable for Pitta-Prakriti people so it is better to consult an Ayurvedic doctor rather than self- medication. One must not compromise with the purity of Shilajit Capsules as an impure form of Shilajit are highly dangerous.