Shilajit Uses, Tests For Quality, Purification, Side Effects, Medicines, Research

There is no curable disease in the universe which is not effectively cured by Shilajit – Master Charaka. Shilajit is one of the sought after Ayurvedic product in the market. From body building, to treating disorders such as diabetes, asthma etc, shilajat is very commonly used.

Sanskrit Synonyms of Sijajeet:
Shailodbhava, Shaileya, Shaila, Girijaatu, Adrija, Shailadhatuja – procured from hills and mountains
Shilamaya, Shilasweda, Shila Niryasa, Ashma Laksha and Gaireya – resembles black stone in shape and size.

Introduction to Silajit:
It is known to Indians since thousands of years. Silajit is mentioned in Ancient Ayurvedic text books  – Charaka Samhita, Sushruta Samhita etc, which were written 3000 years ago.

Traditional belief:
In ancient times, the mountains getting heated due to strong sun rays of Jeshta and ashada months (Summer) melt the layers of the mountain, yielding a resin kind of semisolid liquid, Shilajathu. This resembles coal tar in consistency and upon drying it gains shine. It readily dissolves in water.
It is considered as Fulvic acid.

Fulvic acid: 
Fulvic acid is a semisolid substance that is created as organic matter decomposes.
Fulvic acids is a mxiture of organic acids, herbal, metallic compounds, and components of the humus (which is a fraction of soil organic matter).

Research has also found that Shilajit is the resin obtained from an herb called Asphaltum punjabinum.
Hence Silajitu is called Asphaltum in Sanskrit.
So, asphaltum and fulvic acid – both these are used in the name of Shilajit.

Availability: It is available in hilly areas Kashmir,  Japan, Bhutan, Tibet and Gilgit.

Types of Shilajeeth:
2 types:
Gomutra Shilajitu (Mineral pitch) and
Karpura Shilajatu (Potassium nitrate), also called Surya Kshara, Kalami sora, Soraka, Kannada, Kanmada.

It is also classified as
Sasatwa Shilajatu and
Nisatwa shilajatu.

Acharya Charaka has mentioned about 4 types –
Swarnagarbha Silajatu – Obtained from the mountains and areas where gold ores are found
Rajatagarbha Shilajathu – Obtained from the mountains and areas where silver ores are found
Tamragarbha Shilajatu – Obtained from the mountains and areas where copper ores are found
Lohagarbha Shilajatu  – Obtained from the mountains and areas where iron ores are found

Acharya Sushruta has added two more types to the above to explain 6 – those two are –
Naga garbha Shilajatu and
Vangagarbha Shilajatu.

Test for Shilajatu –
Shilajit kept over burning coal, should not produce fume and it gains the shape of Linga.
Tastes bitter and hot.
Shilajatu kept in water, yields white spreading streaks.
1 gram of Shilajatu causes urination within 15 to 20 minutes after consumption.

Shilajit Shodhan:
Dry Shilajatu is powdered, taken in a big iron vessel, added with 2 -4 times of hot water, stirred well. Next day it is filtered to  separate solid waste particles. The water solution of Shilajit is collected. It is heated till the water reaches boiling point.
Again 2 parts of water is added and heated till boiling point, allowed to cool down. While cooling down, Shilajit is forms a foamy layer on top of the vessel. It is carefully collected.
This process is repeated till the foam is formed.
Then, the obtained mass of Shilajatu is made into a bolus and daily dried in sunlight.
The process is stopped after the foam formation is stopped.

Thus obtained product is called Agnitapi Shilajit.
If heating is done under direct sunlight, then it is called Suryatapi Shilajit.

Shilajitu purification using herbal products:
In the above procedure, in the place of water, Triphala kwatha, Gomutra, Goksheera, Bhringaraja swarasa can also be used.
This helps in adding additional benefits of Triphala, cow urine and Bhringaraja (Eclipta alba) to the Shilajit.

Shilajit  Marana – incineration:
Nowadays, Marana of Shilajatu is not in practice. Shuddha Shilajatu is in use. But there are classical reference of its Marana, hence it is mentioned here.  –

Equal parts of Manashila, gandhaka and Haratala is added with Shilajatu and triturated with beejapura Nimbu (Bijora lemon)  and cakes are prepared, kept in Sharva samputa and 8 Upala Puta is given to get its Bhasma.

Satwapatana:
Shilajatu is added with Dravaka gana and Amladrava and made into bolus, dried taken in Musha and subjected to immense heat, to get Satwa similar to Loha. But it is possible only in Sasatwa Shilajatu.

Dosage –
2-8 Ratti = 250 mg to 1 gram, once or twice a day, or as directed by Ayurvedic doctor. 
Dose of Shilajit capsule or tablet –
250 – 500 mg tablet or capsule – once or twice a day after food is consumed.

How long can Shilajeet be taken?
It can be taken for a period of 6 – 8 weeks at a stretch.
If you are considering taking it for a very long period of time, then better to take it for 2 months, then give a gap of 1 month and continue again.
Better to avoid it during summer.

As per Charaka Samhita:
1 Pala (48 g) – highest potency
1/2 Pala (24g) – Moderate potency
1 Karsha (12 g) – lowest potency
In practice, 1 – 2 grams per day is used in divided doses.

Shilajeet  qualities: (Charaka Samhita Chikitsa Sthana 1st chapter 3rd section)
Anamla – not very sour
Kashaya – astringent taste
Katu Paka – Undergoes pungent taste conversion after digestion
Na Ati ushna – neither too hot, nor too cold
It exudes from the stones  / ores of four types of metals viz, gold, silver copper and black iron.
The Shilajeet from the black iron ore is the best.

If administered with proper procedure, it produces rejuvenating and aphrodisiac effects and cures diseases.
Its potency increases by impregnating it with the kashayha of herbs which alleviate Vayu, Pitta and Kapha.
Impregnation can be done by these drugs individually or by all of them taken together. [48-50]

There is no curable disease in the universe which is not effectively cured by Shilajatu when administered at the appropriate time, in combination with suitable drugs and by adopting the prescribed method.
When administered to a healthy person, with similar conditions it produces immense energy.[62-65]

Diseases in which shilajit is commonly used: 
Shilajit for obesity and weight loss:
Usually cow urine, hot water, Triphala etc are used along with Shilajit for this purpose.
Shilajit – 500 mg along with Triphala churna – 3 grams – once or twice a day is an excellent

Genito  urinary tract diseases:
For urinary tract infection and difficulty in urination, Shilajit is usually administered along with Punarnava kashaya, Gokshura (tribulus).
Body building: Usually Shilajit is administered along with Ashwagandha or Tribulus.
Ashwagandha is used when muscle bulk and stamina are to be increased and
Tribulus is used when muscle shaping, and improving on muscle cuts is desired.

Shilajit for sexual disorders:
Usually it is administered along with Ashwagandha, Kapikacchu, Gokshura, Shatavari etc herbs for the treatment of
Premature ejaculation
Erectile dysfunction
Decreased hardness
Decreased mood.
Damaged sperms, Low sperm count (Oligospermia): For this, it is used along with Putrajiva, Kapikacchu etc.

Shilajit is also used for the treatment of
Diabetes, Gallstones, Jaundice.

Shilajeet Rasayanam:

  • Shilajatu is immersed into the hot decoction of the drugs that are prescribed for alleviating the aggravation of Doshas and
  • After it has absorbed the decoction, it should be immersed again.
  • This process should be repeated for seven days.
  • This processed Shilajatu mixed with the powder of iron should be administered with milk.

Benefits:
This is an elixir for long life and happiness.
It prevents ageing and diseases.
It is an excellent drug for producing sturdiness of the body.
It also promotes Medha ( intellect), Smrti(memory) and Dhana (wealth).
Pathya: the person should live on milk.

Duration:
7 weeks – excellent effect
3 weeks – moderate effect and
1 week – very little effect

Shilajit types and their uses:
Stones of metals like gold etc, in the mountains get heated up by the sun and the exudate that comes out of them in the form of smooth and clean gum is called Silajatu.

Shilajeet from the stones containing gold,
Sweet and is bitter after taste,
like the flower of Japa (Hibiscus flower) in appearance,
pungent in Vipaka (taste conversion after digestion)

From the stone containing silver,
pungent in taste
white, cooling and
Sweet in Vipaka.

From the stone containing copper,
is like the peacock throat,
bitter in taste
Hot and pungent in Vipaka.

The exudates which looks like the gum of Guggulu (Commifora mukul Engl.)
Is bitter and Saline
pungent in Vipaka, and cooling
Is derived from the stone containing iron. This is the best among all.

All these types of Shilajeet having the smell of cow’s urine are useful in all types of therapies. However, for rejuvenation therapy, the last variety (i.e the one derived from the stone contain iron) in more useful.

In diseases caused by

  • Vayu- Pitta – gold
  • Kapha- Pitta – silver
  • Kapha – copper and
  • all the three Dosas – iron containing stones are useful

Contra indicated foods while taking recipe of Silajatu,
Foods that cause burning sensation(vidahi) – excessive spices
Guru( heavy) – heavy to digest foods.
Kulattha (horse gram) should be avoided forever (or till such time as the person has the effects of Silajatu in his body)

Reason for avoiding horse gram:
It is commonly seen that horse gram is an excellent drug for breaking stones.
By taking Shilajatu, the body of the person becomes like a stone to effect sturdiness in it.
Therefore, horse gram and Shilajatu have mutually contradicting effects, and is prohibited for a person who is using or who has used Shilajatu.

Ingredients which can be used with Shilajatu:
Milk, Butter milk
Meat soup, Vegetable soup
Water, decoction of different types of herbs

Side effects and precautions:
Seek your doctor’s advice for its usage during pregnancy.
This product can be safely used during lactation period and in children for a limited period of few weeks time.
Keep out of reach and sight of children.
Store in a cool dry place.

Ayurvedic medicines with Shilajit as ingredient:
Shilajitwadi Lauh Bati
Used in the treatment of chronic respiratory disorders.
Shiva Gutika: It is used for a variety of diseases like liver and spleen disorders, respiratory conditions, neuro-psychiatric conditions etc.
Chandraprabha VatiUsed in Ayurvedic treatment of diabetes, diseases of urinary track, and many other disease conditions.

Research on Shilajit:
Procognitive activity:

Recent investigations point to an interesting medical application toward the control of cognitive disorders associated with aging, and cognitive stimulation. Thus, fulvic acid, the main active principle, blocks tau self-aggregation, opening an avenue toward the study of Alzheimer’s therapy. 

Effect on testosterone level:
Purified Shilajeet, was evaluated in healthy volunteers of age between 45 and 55 years for its effect on male androgenic hormone viz. testosterone in a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled clinical study at a dose of 250 mg twice a day. Treatment with Shilajit for consecutive 90 days revealed that it has significantly (P < 0.05) increased total testosterone, free testosterone and dehydro-epiandrosterone (DHEAS) compared with placebo. Gonadotropic hormones (LH and FSH) levels were well maintained.

Names in different languages:
English name – mineral pitch, mineral wax, black asphaltum,
Latin name – Asphaltum punjabianum
Local names – Shargai, dorobi, barahshin, baragshun
Farsi name – Mumlai
Russian name – Mumiyo, Mumijo
Persian name – Mumiya
Malayalam name – Kanmada


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Comments

  1. T Raghavan says:

    Dear Dr I have been taking shilajit sat(liquid) of Patanjali continuously for the last 5 years (arround 300-500mg, 1drop). What harm does continuous use cause. Can I stop now & continue after 1 month? I have been taking it in warm milk which gives it a pleasant bitter taste.

    • Dr J V Hebbar MD(Ayu) says:

      Hi, Any Ayurvedic medicine is not good to continue for years together, due to preservatives used. I would suggest to stop it for now, give a gap of 3 months and then continue for 2 months, give a gap of 1 month and so on.

  2. K.SAMBHO SANKAR says:

    good article sir. Sir, PERSONS WITH POLYCISTIC KIDNEY GENETIC PROBLEM (SINCE 11 YEARS)HAVING HIGH BP AGE46 WHO IS ON ALLOPATHIC MEDICATION (TELMISARTIN80MG AND S-AMLODIPINE-2.5 MG) can use Shilajith. IF IT IS OK, WHAT IS THE SUGGESTED DOSE AND INTAKE METHOD.

  3. Dr Rajalakshmi Gopalan says:

    Please advise what us the best brand of shilajeet one can buy.

    • Dr J V Hebbar MD(Ayu) says:

      Dear sir,
      Below brands are good.
      1. Morpheme Remedies Shilajit veg capsule – 500 mg – can be taken once or twice a day, after food for a maximum of 2 months time. Available in amazon website here
      http://amzn.to/2xykIwn

      2. Simply Nutra Shilajit Gold Plus capsule – 800 mg. – Can be taken once a day, after food for a period of 2 months time. Available in amazon website here
      http://amzn.to/2zYRZmn

      3. Simply Herbal Shilajit Gold Plus Capsule – 800 mg Can be taken once a day, after food for a period of 2 months time. Available in amazon website here
      http://amzn.to/2zVjSvv

  4. dr Rajalakshmi Gopalan says:

    Thank you for your prompt reply. Being first time consumer of this product, please advise whether 800 mg. once a day is all right. Incidentally this is more economical than 500 mg. capsules brand recommended by you.

  5. Mohan divakaran says:

    The Kannada Bhasma by kottackal area vaidyasala is it shilajit. Kanmada in Malayalam is shilajit .

  6. Is Shilajit available only as a medicine or is it also available as an ingredient of some tonic like product which can be taken daily (eg.Chawanaprash, Bramarasayan)?

    • Dr J V Hebbar MD(Ayu) says:

      I have not come across any tonic with Shilajit as ingredient. It is neither an ingredient of Chyawanprash nor Brahma Rasayana.

  7. Itay Raphael Oron says:

    Hello,
    I have seen diferent forms of pure or raw shilajit on the market:

    Suddha Shilajit (paste/cream)
    Purifiesd Shilajit (lump/tar)

    Can you explain what is the diffrence between them? I am not interested in powder or extract forms only pure/raw.

    Thank you!

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