Botanical Name: Hemedismus Indicus
Sanskrit Name: Sariva
Family Name: ASCLEPIDACEAE (PERIPLOCACEAE)
Vernacular names :
Common Name –Indian sarsaparilla
Hindi and Bengali- Anantamul, Kapuri
English Name-Indian Sarsaparilla
Telugu name- Sungandhipala, Muttavapylagamu
Marathi name- Upalsari, Uparsal
Gujarati Name- Kapuri, Madhuri, Upalasri
Tamil Name- Nannari
Kannada Name- Sogade Beru
Malayalam Name- Naruneenti
Ananta, Anantamula, Asphota , Utpala Sariva, Syama, Krisodari, Chandana, Gopi.
Ganas in classical texts:
Charaka : Jvarahara, Dahaprasamana, Purisasangrahaniya,Stanyasodhana, Madhura skandha
Susruta: Sarivadi, Vidarigandadi, Vallipanchamula
Atharva Parisista quotes ‘Sariva’ (A.P. 5/ I /5). ‘Anuntu’ is also described in the same text. (A.P. 1/43/6)
Two varieties of Sariva (Hemedismus Indicus) are known from Charaka’s time. He enumerated ‘Ananta’ in Kasaya skandha and ‘Gopavalli’ in Madhuru skandha. Though Charaka and Susruta quoted Sariva dvaya at several instances, Vagbhata appears to be quite on this aspect.
In the Nighantus white (Sveta) and black (Krisna) varieties are mentioned. Dhanvantari nighantu indicates that the black variety as Krsnarnlrlu (with black root). Sodhala considered the white variety as Utpalu Sariva.
Bhavamisra described that Krisna Sariva is Characterized by the leaves simile to that of Jambu and possessing great aroma. He further denoted white variety as ‘Gopa’ and black variety as ‘Gopa vaIIi’.
Dalhana commented that Sariva and Utpala sariva are the names of same plant.
Scholars in the modern era have confirmed the followingbotanical names for the above varieties
Sveta Sariva- Hemeclismus indicus R. Br.
Krsna Sfirivji- Ichnocarpus frutcsccn« R. Br.
Since the term ‘Jambu patru sariva’ is mentioned, Cryptolepis buchanani Roem & Schult is made as the botanical source for it.
At present 70-80% of the market samples of Sariva (Hemedismus Indicus) are Decalepis hamiltonii Wight & Arn which are bulky in size and less costly thant H. indicus. Due to indiscreminate wild collection D. hamiltonii is listed as endangered now. [Still, H. indicus is abundantly available in wild but problem with labour involved in collection is the cause for scarcity ]
Cakrapani in Cakradutta has given Asphota as Hafaramali . The commentator of Sidhayogaby Vrnda has also identified it as Afaramallika . So this name Hafarmali is current in Bengal for Asphota .
Asphota is also controversial. Some says it is Girikarnica ( Clitoria ternatea ), others say it is sariva . But mostly it is identified as Sariva, So Hafarmali was Sariva. But vallaris creeper is known today as Hafarmali and so this confusion. True Sariva is Hemidesmus indicus. All agree to it. The aromatic roots are being employed for blood purification throughout the length and breadth of India. It is the nannari of Malbar.
Bengali K avirajas use Ichnocarpus frutiscens R. B. ( Apacynaceae ) as Ananta , which is a synonym of Sariva. All this is for passing reference. I only want to show that Vallaris solanacea roots are being used and sold as Sariva in Dehradun and the origin of this goes upto Chakrapani and Srikanta. It is high time we should set aside now this Vallaris and also Ichnocorpus for Sariva and adopt Hemidesmus indicus as true Sariva, But looking to the apt description of Sivadutta , Sariva has leaves like pomegranate. Leaves have white streaks on them. Leaves when plucked give out latex profusely. Fruits are like beaks and they are full of cotton inside. Creeper is blackish.
Let us identify real Sariva as Hemidesmus indicus the description of which exactly tallies with Sivadutta. Hafarmali is Vallaris.
Shveta Sariva – white variety – Hemidesmus indicusand
Krishna Sariva – Cryptolepis buchanana / Ichnocarpus frutescens
- Hemedismus Indicus – A slender twining or prostrate perennial with terete stem. Leaves -From broadly obovate to oblong-elleptic, linear or linear-lanceolate, obtuse or apiculate.
Flowers- small,yellow or greenish-purple in opposite, crowded subsessile cymes. Fruits- follicles.
I.frutescens- A climbing shrub with rusty-tomentose branches. Leaves- variable, opposite, elliptic-oblong or lanceolate, tomentose beneath, glabrous above.
Flowers- Purple, minute, in long terminal and axillary paciculate cymes.
Fruits- follicles, slender, cylindric, curved.
A slender, laticiferous, twining, sometimes prostrate or semi-erect shrub, occurring over the greater part of India, from the upper Gangetic plain eastwards to Assam and throughout central, western and southern India.
Hyperoside, rutin, desinine, hexatriacontane, beta – sitosterol; hemidesminine, hernidesmin-1 and hemidesmin-2.
Rasa – madhura, tikta
Guna – guru, snigdha
Virya – sita
Karma –tridoshahara, grahi
Jvara, Kandu, Prameha, Kasa, Svasa, Pradara, Aruchi, Agnirnandya, Atisara.Kushtahara, Shukrala , Amahara , Vishapaha,
Infusion 50-100 ml, paste 5-10 g, powder 3-5g.
Therapeutic uses –
- Vrina- Sariva root is claimed to be useful for cleansing all types of wound.
- Vishama Jvara- Decoction of Patola, Sariva, Musta, Patha and Katuki is useful.
- Kustha- Brhati, Uslra, Patola, Sariva and Katuki is to be given for internal and external use.
- Urinary: Urinary infections with dark red, cloudy, painful urination; cystitis, urethritis, kidney infections, prostatitis.
- Nerves: Its alterative and purificatory nature extends to the mind, hence its used in disturbed, angry or irritated emotions from high Pitta . It reduces Vata indirectly by calming the flames of Pitta.
Pinda taila, Saribadyasava, Mahatiktaka ghrta, Pippalyadi ghrita, Amrita ghrita
Research and studies
The aq. extract caused a slight increase in the urinary flow in rats. Alcoholic & aq. extracts also led to a rise in the BP and splenic contraction in dog and also contraction of the isolated guinea pig ileum. An increase in the cardiac rate in rabbit was noticed with the .aq, extract (Satoskar et al., 1962).
A saponin from it was found to have anti-inflammatory activity (ICMR, 1968-69).
The PE, chloroform and alcoholic extracts of roots showed antl-bactcrlal activity against Staph. aureus, Staph. adbus, Sal. typhosa, Vib. Cholera, Esch. Coli etc. (ICMR Bulletin, 1972).
The essential oil exhibited marked antibacterial activity against B. protens, Pr. aeruginosa, Staph. pyogenes and Esch. coli (Prasad ct al., 1983).
The aqueous ethenolic extract of whole plant (0.05 mg/ml) showed antiviral activity against Ranikhet disease virus (Dharet al., 1968). The antiviral activity may be clue to the presence of interferon-like factors in the plant (Babbar et al., 1970).(6) The ethyl acetate extract exhibited significant
antiinflammatory activity in both acute and subacute methods of inflammation (Dutta et al., 1982).
The root is used as anti-leprotic (Gupta, 1981); plaque formation suppressant (Narnba et al., 1985); as nematocidal (Kiuchi et al., 1989); as weak antifilarial (Suresh & Rai, 1990) and as an anti-allergenic in allergic conjunctivitis (Sharma et al., 1994).
It showed immunomodulator activity and immune suppressant activity. It decrease the phagocytosis in experimental studies (Atal et al., 1986).
The dried Indian sarsaparilla roots are medicinal and constitute the HEMIDESMUS or ANANTAMUL which is official in Indian Pharmacopoeia ; they were at one time official also in B.P. The drug comes to the market in small bundles of root pieces, 6 m.-1 ft. long, or as compact bundles of the entire root system of one or more plants tied up with a piece of the stem. The roots are cylindrical, 0.2-0.7 in or more in thickness, some what tortuous, seldom branched, brownish or purplish in colour, with a short fracture at the periphery and fibrous at the centre. The surface of young roots is generally smooth, but m older roots the surface is transversely cracked and longitudinally fissured. The bark has no characteristic taste or odour and is easily separable from the inner tissue surrounding the central wood, which is the officinal part. In the fresh condition the inner cortical tissue is mealy white in colour, but onexposure it becomes dark brown; it has characteristic fragrance and aromatic sweetish taste. The drug as specified in I.P should contain not more than 2% foreign organic matter and 4% ash matter. It should contain alcohol- soluble extractive not less than 15% and water soluble extractive not less than 13-5%. The drug deteriorates with age and fresh roots are preffered (I.P., 253; pharmacognosy of ayurvedic drugs of Travancore- cochin, univ.travancore, Ser. I 1951, 14;I.P.C., 118)
Hemidismus indica is known to naturally produce a wide variety of beneficial compounds known for their healing and calmative effects. This plant has been the focus of many different scientific studies, and there are over a hundred unique compounds that have been isolated from the roots, stems, leaves and flowers. Some of the many compounds found in this plant include: 2-hydroxy-4-methoxy benzaldehyde, 2-hyroxy-4-methoxy benzenoid, alpha-amyrins triterpene, benzoic acid, beta-amyrins, beta-sitosterol, coumarin, delta-dehydro lupeol acetate, delta-dehydrolupanyl-3-beta-acetate, desmine, glucosides, hemidesmin-1, hemidesmin-2, hemidescine, hemidesmic acid, hemidesmine, hemidesmol, hemidesterol, hemidine, hemisine, hexa triconate acid, hyperoside, indicine, indicusin, lactone, lupanone, lupeol acetate, lupeol octacosonate, medidesmine, p-methoxy salicylic aldehyde, pregnane ester diglycoside desinine, sarsapogenin, sarsaponin, sitosterol, smilacin, smilgenin, stigmasterol, tannin, triterpenoid saponin, and vanillin, as well as many other potentially psychoactive compounds (Kainthla et al. 2006).
Sugandi root is a powerful Ayurvedic dream traveling plant. The most noteworthy effects are the calming, clarifying and tranquil feelings produced by consuming the root tea. After drinking the tea, users describe an overall relaxing, calming sensation that envelopes them with feelings of euphoria and puts the mind at ease. Many avid dreamers drink the tea an hour before they go to bed, reporting that it helps them maintain mental clarity and focus as they drift off to sleep. Later in the night, dreamers report being able to recognize the dream state and to easily achieve lucidity, often four or five times in one night. The roots are also known to help relieve stress by inducing an overwhelming sensation of relaxation, euphoria, and tranquility (Pole 2006).
Courtesy : The Wealth of India series , Dravya Guna by Dr. J.L.N. Sastry , Inidan Materia Medica by Vaidya Bhagwan Dash , Dravya Guna by Dr. Gnjanendra Pandey