According to scientific researches, it is confirmed that Shilajit is very effective in treatment of many disease like Consumption (Kshaya), tuberculosis (Rajayakshama), genito-urinary diseases, sexual weakness, gonorrhea, diabetes, chronic bronchitis, phthisis, asthma, gallstone, renal stone, anuria, jaundice, enlarged spleen and liver, and nervous diseases. In Indian sub-continent, Shilajit is very common for treating sexual weakness. As Shilajit is rich source of many minerals so definitely it will improve physical and mental health and that will improve sex life.
What is Shilajit?
Shilajit is one of the most ancient medicine of India. It is the exudation of a bituminous substance from the rocks of Himalaya. It is also found in Caucasus Mountains, Altai Mountains and other Asian mountains. It is said to carry the healing power of these great mountains.
The literal meaning of word Shilajit is ' conqueror of rock’. Another meaning is 'sweat of the rock'.
Shilajita/Shilajeet is a natural substance but it is not an animal or plant based product. It is a mineral pitch that oozes from the rocks of the Himalayas. In summer when the rocks are warmed this mineral comes out from them. In Gangotri it drips from the rocks.
Shilajit contains more than 80 minerals and used in Ayurveda for medicinal purpose. According to Ayurvedic texts there is no disease in the world which cannot be treated by Shilajit if given by the administrator properly with other drugs.
Charak Samhita and Sushruta Samhita describe it as a cure for all disease as well as a Rasayana (rejuvenative) which gives longevity.
In Charak Samhita, Shilajit is described in detail in Rasayana chapter of Cikitsasthana. In Sushruta Samhita, its detail is mentioned in Madhumeha chikitsa (diabetes treatment). Silajit is described as one which removes Kapha, dries up fat and alleviates calculus, gravels, dysuria and Gulma (abdominal distension). Its use is also described for other diseases like Kushtha (leprosy), Apasmara (epilepsy), Unmada (mental disorders), Shlipada (filariasis), Shosa (cachexia), Gulma, Vishama Jvara (malaria) and stones.
Shilajit is used in combination with Ashwagandha, Gokhru for male reproductive disorders. It is given with Shatavari, Mulethi for female disorders. In diabetes, it is combined with Gurmar, Neem, turmeric, black pepper etc. In fluid retention, it is given with Punarnava and Guggulu.
Synonyms of Shilajita (Asphalt)
- Sanskrit: Shilajita, Shilajeet, Shilajatu, Silajit, Silajit, Shilajit, Silaras, Adrija, Girijatu, Kanmada, Shaileya
- English: Mineral Pitch, Vegetable Asphalt
- Hindi: Gujarati and Marathi: Shilajita
- Bengali: Silajatu
- Tamil: Uerangyum, Perangyum, Uerangyum
- Latin: Asphaltum, Asphaltum
- Nepali: Kalo Shilajita
- Persian: Asphaltum Punjabinum;Osteocolla
- Arabic: Hajar-ul-musa
- Persian: Mumiyai, Mumiya, Momiai Faqurual Yahud
- Baluchistan: Khatmolt, Mashana churro
- Russian: Mummio, Mumie
Definition of Shilajita: Shilajit or Asphalt, is an exudate of selected rocks occurring in the Himalaya region, made of decomposed centuries old plants, and rocks formed under pressure.
It is highly condensed mineral and amino acids source. It gives physical, mental and sexual power.
In Hindu Mythology: Mythological, it is believed Silajit originated from the Mandrachala Parvata as Sveda (sweat) while churning of the ocean.
Distribution: India, Afghanistan (Hindukush), Australia (Northern Pollock Ranges), and in the former USSR (Tieii-Shan, Pamir, Caucasus, Ural), Tibet at attitudes between 1000 and 5000 m.
Part used: oozing from the rocks.
Color: Pale-brown to blackish-brown.
Smell: like cow’s urine.
Botanical description: Bitumen mineral
Dosage of Shuddha Shilajatu: It is given in dose of 250 mg -1 gram, 2-3 times a day with milk.
For obesity, Shuddha Shilajit is given in dose of 500 mg, twice a day with hot water.
The exact dose depends on the age, strength, digestive power of the patient, the nature of the illness, the state of the viscera and humours.
It is taken with milk, buttermilk, meat soup, hot water or with adjuvant depending on the disease.
Important Ayurvedic Medicines containing Shilajita
- Arogyavardhini Vati
- Chandraprabha Vati
- Shatavari Gud
- Shilajitvadi Lauh
- Shatavaryadi Ghrita
- Sarvatobhadra Vati
- Prabhakar Vati
- Purnachandra Ras
- Yograj Lauh
What is Shuddha Shilajit?
The rocks exudate contains only fifty percent Shilajit and the rest is impurities. If impure Shilajit is taken then it may cause giddiness, inflammation, hemorrhages, loss of appetite constipation etc. The impurities are removed as per the Ayurvedic text and Shilajit thus obtained is known as Shuddha Shilajit.
Shodhan of Shilajita (Rasatarangini)
Shilajita Shodhan is the process which removes the impurities, makes it suitable for use and helps in increasing the therapeutic values.
Silajatu 2 Parts
Hot water 4 Parts
Triphala Kvatha P. 1 Part
- Take powder of Silajatu, add specified amounts of hot water and Triphala Kvatha so as to disengage the soluble matter.
- Allow to settle down and decant the supernatant layers.
- Repeat the process till a clear liquid is obtained.
- Concentrate the decanted material to thick paste over moderate heat.
- Dry in sun rays and preserve for further purpose.
Test the purity of Shilajita
- When put on fire it must burn without smoke and should take shape of Lingam.
- When dropped into water it must spread like a thread up to the bottom without being dissolved.
- It should look black and give smell of cow’s urine.
How Shilajit formed in rocks?
It is formed for centuries by the gradual decomposition of certain plants by the action of microorganisms. It mainly composed of humus and organic plant material.
Varieties of Shilajita Described in Ayurveda
Sushruta Samhita and Astanga Hardayam describes six types of Shilajit viz. Svarna, Rajat, Tamra, Lauha, Vanga (Tin) and Naga (Lead) whereas Charak Samhita has mentioned four varieties Hema (gold), Rajata (silver), Tamra (copper), Krishnayasa/Lauha (iron). The Shilajit which is black in color, is used for medicinal purpose.
There are four different varieties of Shilajit described in charka Samhita.
Swarn: gold Shilajit, red in color.
Rajat: silver Shilajit, white in color.
Tamra: copper Shilajit, blue in color.
Lauha Shilajit: iron-containing Shilajit, brownish-black in color.
The Swarna and Tamra varieties are not found commonly and the black variety i.e. laugh shilajatu is generally used for medicinal purpose.
Composition of Shilajit
The composition of Shilajit is influenced by factors such as the plant-species involved, the geological nature of the rock, local temperature profiles, humidity and altitude.
Shilajit consists of 60-80% organic matter, 20-40% mineral matter and 5% of trace elements. It has been reported to contain a number of components including benzoic acid, hippuric acid, fatty acids, resin and waxy materials, gums, albuminoids and vegetable matter with benzoic acid. Extensive research in the eighties showed that the major organic mass of Shilajit comprised of humus (60-80%) along with other components such as benzoic acid, hippuric acid, fatty acid, ichthyol, eliagic acid, resin, triterpenes, sterol, aromatic carboxylic acid, 3, 4-benzocoimiarins, amino acids and phenolic lipids.
It contains silica, iron, antimony, calcium, copper, lithium, manganese, molybdenum, phosphorus, sodium and zinc.
Important Medicinal Properties
Energetics of Shilajit
It is pungent, bitter and hot-pungent. It balances tridosha. But when taken in excess it increases pitta.
Rasa (taste on tongue): Kasaya (Astringent), Katu (Pungent), Tikta (Bitter)
- Guna: Guru (Heavy)
- Virya: Ushna (Heating)
- Vipaka (transformed state after digestion): Katu (Pungent)
- Dhatu (tissu): All the tissues.
- Srotas (Channel): Urinary, nervous, and reproductive.
- Karma: Rasayan, Yogvahi, Sarva-roghar, Kaphahar, Tridoshaghna.
Shilajit is important Rasayan drug of Ayurveda. It has been used since time immemorial for treatment of wide variety of diseases due to its medicinal properties. Some of the important medicinal properties are given below:
Alterative: alters the morbid or unhealthy processes of nutrition and excretion and restores the normal functioning.
Aphrodisiac: Stimulating or increasing the sexual appetite, passion and virile power.
Antiseptic: prevent or retard the growth of micro-organisms.
Anti-ulcerogenic: prevents formation of ulcer by reducing gastric acid secretion.
Anti-inflammatory: Reducing inflammation by acting on body mechanisms.
Antioxidant: neutralize the oxidant effect of free radicals and other substances.
Anti-diabetic: Blood sugar lowering
Anti-stress, anti-anxiety: reduces stress.
Anti-allergic: prevents, or relieves an allergy.
Diuretic: stimulates urine production.
Immunity-boosting: Increases immunity.
Immunomodulatory: modifies the immune response or the functioning of the immune system.
Lithotriptic: possess the power of dissolving various concretions in the body.
Rejuvenative: to make young again;restore to youthful vigor, appearance, etc.
Spermatogenic and Ovogenic
Nootropic: Learning augmenting
Health Benefits of Shilajit (Shuddha)
Shilajit is mineral pitch. It is a potent and very safe dietary supplement that restores the energetic balance and prevents several diseases. It is especially used in India in treatment of male sexual disorders such as erectile dysfunction, premature ejaculation, lack of sexual desire, ejaculatory incompetence, impotence and infertility.
Shilajit is complex mixture of humic substances. It is an important Rasayan (rejuvenator and immunomodulator) drug of Ayurveda. Rasayan is tonic that helps to attain optimal physical strength, sharpness of sense organs, qualities of dhatus, longevity, immunity, and mental competence. Shilajit is anti-ageing, Medhya Rasayan, Yogavahi (enhancer of other drug), antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, aphrodisiac, adaptogen and immunomodulator. It shows effect on every body organ and cures wide variety of diseases.
- It is a Rasayan or tonic.
- It is a powerful adaptogen (help the body adapt to stress).
- It improves vitality and libido.
- It cures sexual debility.
- It improves spermatogenesis and increases sperm count.
- It is wonderful uterine tonic.
- It acts on every body organ and especially on urinary and nervous system.
- It is especially useful in diabetes and male sexual disorders.
- It increases flow of digestive secretion and helps in better absorption.
- It helps in reducing blood sugar levels.
- It is one of the best kidney toner.
- It tonifies the activity of the seven body constituents (Saptha Dhatus) namely plasma, blood, muscle, fat, bone, bone marrow and reproductory fluids of the body.
- It has immunomodulatory, anti-inflammatory, analgesic, antifungal and antioxidant properties.
- The minerals and plant nutrients in Shilajit provide powerful antioxidants in body that scavenge free radicals and prevent degenerative changes in body.
- It is an excellent mineral supplement. The Fulvic acid present in Shilajit makes the trace minerals in bioavailable.
- It reduces risk of degenerative Disorders.
- It slow down the process of aging by rejuvenation and immunomodulation.
- Digestive troubles, vomiting
- Enlargement of the abdomen
- Piles or Hemorrhoids
- Parasitic Infestation
- Jaundice, Hepatitis, Indigestion, Gall stones and its obstruction
- Obstinate abdominal diseases including ascites
Urinary tract system (kidney, ureter, bladder)
- Kidney stones, Cystitis, Dysuria i.e. difficulty in urination
- Chronic urinary tract problems, Urinary tract infections burning urination
- Spermoruia (sperm out flow through urine), Diabetes Mellitus
- Frequent urination caused by a stone in prostate area
- Obstinate urinary disorders including diabetes Incipetus, Glycosuria, Lithuria
- Scrofula (tuberculous cervical lymphadenitis)
- Dyspnoea, Chronic bronchitis problem, Asthma attack
- Nervous diseases, Parkinson’s disease
- Stress management, Epilepsy attacks
- Insanity problems, Schizophrenia
- Sexual debility and weakness, Sexual vitality problems, Infertility issues of males and females
- Menstrual disorders in females, Post-partum health issues
- Thyroid dysfunction
Improving sexual performance, sperm count
- Curing erectile failure, premature ejaculation, lack of sexual desire and ejaculatory incompetence
- Nocturnal emission/ Nightfall, Venereal disease, Gonorrhea
- Fractures and broken bones, Arthritis and joint pains, Osteoarthritis, Osteopenia
- Spondylosis of cervical as well as lumbar region
Many other diseases such as
- Anemia, Vitiation of blood balance and its circulation
- Parasitic diseases related to skin, Various Skin related diseases, Leprosy and Psoriasis
- Bodybuilding (Muscular hypertrophy)
- Mouth related disorders
What the Modern Researches Say?
Modern researches confirms the medicinal properties and supports the traditional uses of Shilajit.
A study was done to evaluate the aphrodisiac and spermatogenic potential of the aqueous extract of Shilajit in rats. For the purpose, Male Wistar albino rats were divided into four groups. Rats were orally treated with (1) Control group: distilled water (2) Viagra group:4 mg/kg/day sildenafil citrate (3) Shilajit 50 mg/kg/day and (4) Shilajit 100mg/kg/day and their sexual behavior was monitored 1h later using a receptive female. Their sexual behavior was evaluated on days 0, 7, 14, 21, 28, 35 and 42days of treatment by pairing with a estrous phase female rat. For sperm count the treatment was continued further.
The study concluded, Shilajit extract improved sexual performance as well as sperm count.
It is a safe drug without any known adverse effects and can be very useful in enhancing the male sexual activity and treating various sexual disorders like erectile failure, premature ejaculation, lack of sexual desire and ejaculatory incompetence.
The results of the study suggested that Shilajit have a beneficial effect on male reproductive functions in rats.
The data showed increased sperm counts, motility, increase in the absolute weight of the testis and epididymis and significant increase in serum testosterone levels.
Shilajit improves and enhances the fertilizing capacity of the Semen.
Side-Effects of Shilajit
- It is safe to use Shilajit in recommended dosage. Study show it is quite safe up to a dose of 3 g/kg in mice.
- The dosage is dependent on the age, strength, digestive power of the patient, the nature of the illness, the state of the viscera and humours.
- In excess it increases Pitta.
- It should not be used in high uric acid count.
- It should not be used in febrile diseases.
- It should not be used with a heavy diet.
- Avoid physical exercise, exposure to sunrays and wind while taking Shilajit.
- The ill effects of Silajit are cured by taking Kali mirch and Ghee, in dose of 3 grams for seven days.
- Do not use fried, roasted, sour, fermented foods, kuatha/Kulthi Dal and Kakamachi (Solanum nigrum) for the period Shilajit remains in the body.
Although shilajit is used to treat kidney stones, use caution if the stones are made of uric acid or if uric acid crystals are in the urine as uric acid increases with the administration of Shilajit. For this same reason, Shilajit is contraindicated in gouty arthritis. (Halpern 2003).
- International journal of pharmaceutical research and bio-science;evaluation of aphrodisiac activity and spermatogenic effect of shilajit;GUPTA RB, AHUJA A, YADAV R, KABRA MP.
- Park JS, Kim GY, Han K. Spermatogenic and ovogenic effects of chronically administered Shilajit torats. Journal of Ethnopharmacology.2006;107:349-353.
- Rege A, Juvekar P, Juvekar A. In vitro antioxidant and anti-arthritic activities of shilajat. Int J Pharm Pharm Sci. 2012;4(2):650-653.
- Nadkarni KM. Indian Materia Medica. 3rd edition. Popular Prakashan Private Ltd Bombay, India. 1954.
- Chopra, R.N. (1933). Indigenous drugs of India.
- Y.C. Kong, P.P.H But, K. H. Ng, K.F. Cheng, R.C. Cambie, and S.B. Malla, Chemical studies on a Nepalese Panacea- Shilajit (I) Int.J.Crude Drug Res, 1987, 25:179.
- S.K. Bhattacharya. Shilajit attenuates Streptozacin induced Diabetes Mellitus and decrease in pancreatic islets superoxide dismutase activity in rats. Phytotherapy reearch.
- Shilajit, Natural Phytocomplex with Potential Procognitive Activity Carlos Carrasco-Gallardo, Leonardo Guzman, and Ricardo B. Maccioni.
- Acharya SB, Frotan MH, Goel RK, Tripathi SK, Das PK. Pharmacological actions of Shilajit.
- Indian J Exp Biol. 1988 Oct;26(10):775-7.
- Goel RK, Banerjee RS, Acharya SB. Antiulcerogenic and anti inflammatory studies with shilajit.
- Journal of Ethnopharmacology. 1990 Apr;29(1):95-103.
- Ghosal S, Singh SK, Kumar Y, Srivatsava R. Antiulcerogenic activity of fulvic acids and 4- metoxy-6-carbomethyl biphenyl isolated from shilajit. Phytother Res. 1988;2:187-91.