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Capsule Guggul

Latin name: Commiphora Guggul
Family: Burseraceae
Common name: guggul
English name: Salaitree, Gum-guggul

Habitat: it is found in rocky tracts of Rajasthan, Gujrat.

Macroscopic identification: a small perinneal tree or shrub upto 1.2-1.8 m high.When fresh the oleo-gum rasin is moist, viscid, fragrant and of golden color.

Parts used: gum

Pharmacological action: demulcent, aperients, alterative, carminative, antispasmodics, emmanogogue, and anti suppurative.

Actions and uses in ayurveda: vatvyadhi, aamvata, granthi, sopha, gandamala, medoroga, prameha, kustha

Indications: rheumatism, sciatica, osteoarthritis, obesity, weakness, edema, pharyngitis, tonsillitis, female disorders.

Photochemical: volatile oil, gum-resin and bitter principle. The extract isolates ketonic steroid compounds known as guggulsterones.

Properties and action:

Rasa: tikta, katu, kashaya
Guna: laghu, sara, visad, ruksha, tikshana, suksm, sugandhi( old guggul) ; snigdh and pichhil ( navin guggul)
Virya: usna
Vipaka: katu
Karma: vata hara, balya, rasayana, varnya, bhagnsandhankriy, medohar.
Preparations: powder, tablet

Therapeutic classification index:

  • Blood and haemopoeitic tissue: it is used to increase blood count in anemia
  • Central nervous system: used in hemiplegia, migraine, neurasthenia and other nervous disorders.
  • Cardiovascular system: used in coronary thrombosis
  • Skin: it is used in leprosy, psoriasis, eczema, acne.
  • Respiratory system: it is used in pharyngitis, tonsillitis. It is used in pulmonary tuberculosis.
  • Digestive system: it is useful in indigestion, troublesome borborygmi, as an intestinal disinfectant, chronic colitis, tubercular ulceration of bowel and diarrhea.
  • Reproductive system: it is used in chronic endometritis, ammenorhea, menorrhagia, leucorrhea
  • Ear nose throat and mouth: it is used in dental caries, pyorrhea, and spongy bleeding gums. It is used in pharyngitis, tonsillitis, laryngitis and ulcerated throat.
  • Genito- urinary system: it is used in urinary infections, burning micturition, dysuria, calculi etc.
  • Musculoskeletal system: useful in lumbago, rheumatism, osteoarthritis, and sciatica.

Use of guggul in lowering High cholesterol:

  1. Studies show that a 14-27% of LDL cholesterol and 22-30% of triglycerides levels were reduced when guggul was given to men and women with high cholesterol for 12 weeks with no change in diet or exercise. Several clinical studies were published in the Indian Journal of Medicine (volume 84) in 1986, Indian Pharmacoepia and in the Journal of the Association of Physicians in India (vol. 34 & 37) all stating the efficacy of guggul in lowering LDL cholesterol and triglycerides. Dr. David Moore and his team at the Baylor College of Medicine in Houston found that the guggulsterone, the active ingredient in the Guggul extract, blocks the activity of a receptor in the liver's cells called Farnesoid X Receptor (FXR). Later, Dr. David Mangelsdorf at University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center in Dallas confirmed that the guggul blocked the receptor and affected how cholesterol is metabolized.
  2. Baylor College of Medicine in Houston found that the guggulsterone, the active ingredient in the Guggul extract, blocks the activity of a receptor in the liver's cells called Farnesoid X Receptor (FXR). Later, Dr. David Mangelsdorf at University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center in Dallas confirmed that the guggul blocked the receptor and affected how cholesterol is metabolized
  3. A double-blind placebo-controlled study of guggul for reducing cholesterol studied 61 individuals for 24 weeks. After following a healthy diet for 12 weeks the participants were divided into two groups with half of the participants receiving placebo and the other half receiving guggul (100 mg of guggulsterones daily). At 24 weeks the results showed that the treated group had a 11.7% decrease in total cholesterol. Those on guggul also had a 12.7% decrease in LDL ("bad" cholesterol), a 12% decrease in triglycerides, and an 11.1% decrease in the total cholesterol ratio.
  4. 40 heart disease patients participated in a 16-week study were given twice daily divided doses of 4.5 grams of guggul lipid. They experienced a 21.75 percent decrease in blood fats (including LDL, VLDL, and triglycerides) and a 35 percent increase in "good cholesterol". Guggul lipid also reduced platelet stickiness.
  5. Another study conducted at Kerala University in India established that "guggul given to laboratory animals reduced their blood lipid levels quickly and effectively without side effects". They found that improved liver enzyme activity was one of the ways Guggul reduced the blood cholesterol. Kerala Univ., Indian J. Exp. Biol. 33, 1995

Use of guggul in Atherosclerosis:
Two compounds, Z-guggulsterone and E-guggulsterone, appear to be responsible for guggul lipid's cholesterol-lowering effects. Guggul also appears to boost levels of "good" cholesterol although the exact mechanism is unknown. Both of these actions help prevent Atherosclerosis. Guggul is also an antioxidant, which helps stop the oxidization of cholesterol and the subsequent hardening of the arteries.

Use of guggul in Impotence:
Men with lower blood cholesterol or higher amounts of the beneficial high-density lipoprotein (HDL) cholesterol may be less likely to develop erectile dysfunction or impotence. Since guggul supports atherosclerosis (hardening of the arteries), which may impede blood flow to and from the penis, guggul may possibly be the treatment for impotence many men are looking for.

South Carolina scientists conducted a study of more than 3,200 healthy men between the ages of 25 and 83. The men with total cholesterol over 240 mg/dl had close to double the risk of penile dysfunction as men with readings of 180 mg/dl. Also those with HDL readings of 60 mg/dl or greater were less likely to develop penile dysfunction than the men with less than 30 mg/dl HDL

Use of guggul in Weight Loss:

  1. Research with laboratory animals suggests guggul may help enhance thyroid function. Since the thyroid gland produces hormones that are needed to regulate metabolism, it can help in weight loss. Studies show guggul may change thyroid hormone metabolism, increase levels of circulating T3, or triiodothyroxine, a thyroxine metabolite known to raise overall metabolism, which in turn increases fat burning.
  2. In one double-blind study - a combination of guggul, phosphate salts, hydroxycitrate, and tyrosine (along with healthy exercise) improved the mood of overweight patients with a slight tendency to improve weight loss. However, there appeared to be no effect on thyroid gland function in the people studied.

Use of guggul in Acne
In a 1994 study at the Department of Dermatology, in Bajaj Nagar, Jaipur, India, 20 patients with nodulocystic acne were randomly given either 500mg of Tetracycline or doses of gugulipid with 25mg guggulsterone. Both groups produced a progressive reduction in lesions. Those on tetracycline showed a 65.2% reduction compaired with a 68% reduction with the gugulipid. The three-month follow-up showed relapses in 4 cases of tetracycline and 2 cases of the gugulipid patients.

Other Conditions:
Traditional Ayurvedic medicine suggests that Guggul helps increase white blood cell production, disinfects mucus, sweat, and urine and regulates menstruation

Dose: raisin 2-4 gms

Capsule Guggul contains 500 mg of Sudhh Guggul
Dosage: one capsule twice a day.
Package 60 capsules

References:

  1. Prof P.V Sharma, Dravya Guna Vigyana, Vol II, pg 54-56
  2. Dr.KM Nadkarni, The Indian Materia Medica, Vol.I, pg 374
  3. The Ayurvedic Pharmacopoeia Of India, Part I, Vol.I, pg 43
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