Safed Musli: Asparagus adscendens Uses, Research, Side Effects

Musali- Asparagus adscendens  is a plant mentioned in Ayurveda for the treatment of erectile dysfunction, lack of libido and to improve the body stamina. 

Latin name- Asparagus adscendens  Roxb.
Family- Liliaceae

Mushli Names in different languages:
Hindi name – Safed musali, Safed Musli
Kannada name – Bili Mushali
Uttar Pradesh – Jhirna
English name – White musali
Marathi name – Safed musli
Gujarati name – Dholi musali, Ujali Musli
Tamil name – Tannir bittang
Telugu name – Sallogadda
Urdu name – Musli
Punjabi name – Syahoo Musli
Afghani name -Sakakulae

Sanskrit Synonyms of Safed Musli
Talamuli- Root resembles the root of Tala
Talapatra, Talapatri – Leaf resembles the leaf of Tala plant
Vrushaskanda, Mahavrusha, Vrusya kandha – Tuberous having aphrodisiac properties
Hiranyapushpi – yellow coloured flowers
Kharjuri, Khalini, Gavali

Safed Musli – Asparagus adscendens it is commonly used.
Kali Musli – Talamuli – Black Musli: Curculigo orchioides

Safed Musali is calssified into two types:
Chlorophytum Laxum Br.
Chlotophytum Tuberosum Baker

Another type of musali is Chamara Musali.
Latin Name     – Ampelocissus Araneosa Planch
Family – Vitaceae

Morphology of Asparagus adscendens:
Musali is a small plant growing to a height of 2-3 cm, having multiple roots. The stem is soft, slippery and white in color. The leaves are dark green, resembling that of palm tree. The flowers are small, yellow in color and appear in rainy season. The roots are white in color and soft in nature.

Medicinal properties of Mushali:
Rasa (Taste) – Madhura (Sweet), Tikta (Bitter)
Guna (Qualities) – Guru (Heavy for digestion), Snigdha (Slimy)
Vipaka – Madhura (Undergoes Sweet taste after digestion)
Veerya (Potency) – Sheeta (Cold)
Karma (Actions) – Vatapitta shamaka (reduces vitiated vata and pitta dosha), Kaphavardaka (increase kapha dosha)

Part used- Root
Root powder- 3 to 6 g

Chemical composition of Asparagus adscendens:
The root yields asparagin. Sapogenins A and B, isolated from the root, were identi?ed as stigmasterol and sarsasapogenin.

Uses of Mushali: 

  • The powder of root of Mushali is taken in a dose of 3-5 g and added with milk in conditions of low sperm count, lack of libido, general weakness, premature ejaculation
  • The cold infusion of the root of Asparagus adscendens is given in a dose of 40-50 ml to treat burning micturition and difficulty in micturition.
  • To improve the complexion of the skin, the powder of the root of Mushali is mixed with milk and honey and applied over the skin
  • Tiredness due to diabetes, sexual weakness  – 10 grams is added with a cup of milk, boiled for 3 – 5 minutes, filtered. This is consumed in a dose of 20 – 30 ml, once or twice a day.
    It is alsu useful in leucorrhea, diarrhea and hematuria.
  • Deafness – A churna of Musali and bakuchi to be taken with Ghee or honey.
  • Mukhakanthi as a cosmetic to brighten the complexion of the face. Musali prepared as a paste with goats milk or honey and applied locally over the face.
  • Freckles – The root of Musali pounded with goat’s milk and mixed with honey is applied on face.
  • As aphrodisiac – Powder of Musali root combined with Guduci satva, Kapikacchu, Goksura, Salmali and Amalaki and suspended in milk added with Ghee should be taken. It arouses sex urge.

How long can Safed musli powder be taken?
Its powder in a dose of 2 – 5 grams once or twice a day, can be taken for a period of two months. After that, usually its dose is gradually reduced and stopped.

Traditional uses as per Ayurveda:
Guru – heavy to digest
Vrushya – aphrodisiac, improves vigor
Rasayani – anti aging, causes cell and tissue rejuvenation
Brumhana – nourishing, nutritious

Adverse effect:
No adverse effect is known or reported after the normal use of Musali.

Ayurvedic medicines with Musli as ingredient:
Kaunch Pak
Used in male infertility treatment. It improves sperm count and quality.
Musli Khadiradi Kashayam: An Ayurvedic medicine used to treat wide range of gynaecological conditions like leucorrhoea and menorrhagia. It is an herbal decoction preparation

Xytone CapsulesIt is used in the treatment of stress and associated symptoms.
Raja Malt – used for improving sexual strength and energy.

Classical categorization:
Bhavaprakasha- Guduchyadi varga
Kaiyyadeva Nighantu- Oushadhi varga
Shodala Nighantu- Karaveeradi varga
Raja Nighantu- Moolakadi varga
Priya Nighantu – Saradi Varga
PV Sharma – Vrushyadi Varga, Shukrajanana

Literary view of Mushali:
In the Vedas, the descriptions regarding the plant Musali is not available.
Asparagus the different varieties in Chara Samhitas: The descriptions regarding the plant Musali is not available.

In Sushruta Samhita: – As said, Chikitsa and Uttara Stana. In  Chikitsa Stana 7th chapter and in Uttara Stana 51st chapter.
Suchruta has mentioned the therapeutical efficiency of Musali. He has given therapeutic uses of Musali for Swadamstra(Krawncha, Oustra, Rasaba). In case of Swadamstra using a Talamuli along with Mula of Kadamba along with Sarkara to take with Usna Udaka(hot water)  – (Su. Sam. Chi. 7/18)

Charma Vikaras -> using a kolamajja along with talamuli along with madhu(Su. U. Stana . 51/38  )
In Astanga hridaya Vaghbata has not mentioned the plant Musali.

In Nigantu’s:  
Raja Nigantu has given synonyms, guna karma of Musali. In Danwantari Nigantu is not mentioned the plant Musali.
In Kariradeva Nigantu is mentioned guna and karma of Musali.
In Bavaprakasa Nigantu is mentioned guna, karma, paryaya.
In similarly priya Nigantu also we get the guna, karma and paryaya’s of Musali.
Most of the Nigantu’s give synonyms like Talamuli, Hemapuspee, Varahi, Ucchata, Soukari, Mahapuspa, Prana Pushpee and many more.

Distribution and habitat
Western Himalaya, Punjab, Gujarat, Madya Pradesh of India.
Common in Dunvalley, Siwalkies and Salforests in Uttar Pradesh Foot- Hills.
It is distributed in Afganistan, the Punjab and in the Himalaya up to altitude of 6,300 feet.

Phytochemical studies
Tiwari and Misra have identified a new Glycoside 5, 7 – Dimethoxy Myricetin 3-0-2-L-Xylopyranosyl 4-0-B-D Glycopyranoside from the rhizome of Circuligo Orchioide. The tubers of the plant contain free sugars 7.56%, Mucillage 8.12%, Hemicellulose 20.15%, and other Polysacharides 17.01%.

Author: Dr.B.K.Prashanth M.D (Ayu), Ph.D
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  1. Dr J V Hebbar MD(Ayu) says:

    Safede Musli capsule – regular dose is – 1 capsule once or twice a day after food. Available in amazon website here

  2. Aman Kaushal says:

    is not SAFEED MUSLI name is – Chlorophytum Borivilianum
    ASPARAGUS Adscendens is ” SHATAVRI ” ??

    Shtavri and muslli same thing ??
    I guess there is some misprint here

    • Dr J V Hebbar MD(Ayu) says:

      Hi, Safed Musli is Asparagas adscendens. Chlorophytum Borivilianum is also used in the name of Safed Musli. Qualities are very similar. It is officially Talamuli or Black musli.
      Shatavari is Asparagus racemosus.

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