Manjistha  (Indian Madder)

Latin:  Rubia cordifolia

Family:  Rubiaceae

Parts Used:  Root

Taste/Energetics:  Bitter, sweet, cooling

Properties:  Astringent, lymph tonic, antispasmodic, anxiolytic, circulatory stimulant, antiinflammatory, antimicrobial, vulnerary

Actions:  Manjistha has been used as a tonic herb in Ayurveda for centuries and is notable for its bright red roots.  This is a blood and lymph tonic par excellence able that can help with the metabolism and excretion of waste material in that system.  Backup of lymph can lead to sluggishness, fatigue, depression and immune system problems.   It is considered a “rasayana”, a supreme tonic capable of rejuvenating and improving energy levels, immune system function, calming and mood stabilizing.  There is similarity between it and “Red Root” (Ceanothus americanus) in its lymph and blood tonic properties though Red Root is more warming tan Manjistha.

As a cooling herb it is useful for people who feel hot, aggravated, “toxic”, at times angry and labile in mood.  Other symptoms that can arise that Manjistha can be helpful for:   when it is more challenging to fight off colds, swollen glands, chronic infections, urinary tract inflammation and when the skin becomes hot and inflamed with eczema and psoriasis.  For women this herb can alleviate painful uterine cramping and poor choppy blood flow as well as calm anxiety and frustration during menstruation.

Dosage:  1/2- 1 teaspoon to 2x/day- for several weeks to take good effect   It is also used externally

Contraindications:  Not to use with blood thinners, pregnancy.