Scientific name: Tinospora cordifolia
Giloy, also known as Amrita or Guduchi in Hindi
T. cordifolia (Guduchi) is a widely used plant in folk and Ayurvedic systems of medicine. It is a large, deciduous, extensively-spreading, climbing vine with several elongated twining branches. Leaves are simple, alternate, and exstipulate with long petioles up to 15 cm (6 in) long which are roundish and pulvinate, both at the base and apex with the basal one longer and twisted partially and half way around. It gets its name heart-leaved moonseed by its heart-shaped leaves and its reddish fruit. Lamina are broadly ovate or ovate cordate, 10–20 cm (4–8 in) long or 8–15 cm (3–6 in) broad, seven nerved and deeply cordate at base,
A large number of chemicals have been isolated from T. cordifolia, belonging to different classes such as alkaloids, diterpenoid lactones, glycosides, steroids, sesquiterpenoid, phenolics, aliphatic compounds and polysaccharides. Leaves of this plant are rich in protein (11.2%), calcium and phosphorus
Ayurvedic textbook ‘Bhavaprakasha’, the properties of Giloy are described in below shloka:
काश्मरी तुवरा तिक्ता वीर्योष्णा मधुरा गुरु।
दीपनी पाचनी मेध्या भेदिनी भ्रमशोषजित्। दोषतृष्णाऽऽमशूलार्शोविषदाहन्धरापहा ॥
तत्त्फलं बृंहणं वृष्यं गुरु केश्यं रसायनम्। वातपित्ततृषारक्तक्षयमूत्रविबन्धनुत् ॥
स्वादु पार्क हिमं स्निग्धं तुवराम्लं विशुद्धिकृत् । हन्याद दाहतृषावातरक्तपित्तक्षतक्षयान् ॥ – भावप्रकाश
Giloy is Titka (bitter) in taste and Ushna (hot) in potency. After metabolization, it becomes Madhura (sweet) and Guru (heavy) in nature. It has Deepan (appetizer) and Pachan (digestive) properties which help in improving digestion. Giloy also helps to reduce excessive thirst, pain, and burning sensation because of its Tridosha balancing property. Regular use of Giloy can boost energy and immunity because of its Balya (strength provider) and Rasayana (rejuvenating) qualities.
The bitter taste of Giloy may help manage blood glucose levels in diabetic patients. Giloy also helps in weight management by improving overall metabolism.
Drinking fresh Giloy juice helps to improve immunity and can be used to manage fevers due to its antipyretic activity. It also increases platelet count and might help in dengue fever.
Giloy powder, Kadha (tea), or tablets can also be used for various skin problems as it helps to remove toxins from the body.
You can apply Giloy leaf paste on the skin to fasten the wound healing process as it helps increase collagen production and skin regeneration.
Is Guduchi Safe?
Guduchi is a rejuvenating, adaptogenic herb that is generally considered safe for all doshas and is especially beneficial for vata and pitta. That said, there are a couple of instances in which it’s best to exercise caution.
Because of its powerful work in the immune system, guduchi may potentially cause over-activity of immune function in the case of autoimmune disease. It is also best to use caution when taking medication that lowers blood sugar levels.
For those who are pregnant, nursing, or taking medications, we recommend speaking to your doctor or Ayurvedic practitioner before taking guduchi.