Narikel / Coconut (Cocos Nucifera)- Ayurvedic Properties, Effects On Doshas & Dosage
Ayurveda is a science that gives us knowledge of life, or good well-being, and the main of this ancient path is to remind us that the entire life is intricately interwoven. Total wellness depends on the unique emphasis of Ayurvedic science to harmonise our internal doshas according to the external environment. There are some basic functional principles that are explained by Ayurveda in Sanskrit words like Vata, Pitta, and Kapha. Everything can be described in this world with its natural gunna, like we can explain every herb, every element, in this world with the help of some qualities. Ayurveda offers various modes of treatment with the help of different protocols: it may include herbal medicines, it may include yoga therapy, it may include rejuvenation therapy like kuti praveshika or rasaynik therapy or it may also act as an elimination of toxins with only natural intelligence. This ancient medicine gives you the promise of a harmonious future with disease-free life. In this article writing, we are going to discuss a very auspicious herb named Narikel, or coconut. Its fruit is said to be a good luck charm and is used at the beginning of any auspicious work.
Coconut is commonly known as “Nariyal” all over India and even worldwide, its botanical name is Cocus Nucifera which is a member of the Arecaceae family, this plant is the only living species of the Cocos genus. Coconut word refers to all the parts like its palm, its seed, and its drupe. The coconut tree is beneficial as food, cosmetics, fuel, and many more benefits are out there. Coconut is distinct from other fruits they are consisting of a clear liquid in the endosperm that is commonly known as coconut water. Ripened coconuts are having various uses like it has edible seeds, processed oil, and coconut milk. It is commonly known by the name of Nariyal, sriphal, narel in Hindi, in Bengali, narikel, in Gujarati naliyar, in Marathi naral, in Punjabi kopa or narel, and in English it is well known by the name of Palm, copra, coconut, porcupine wood.
Special Note About This Plant
- This plant is very helpful in managing the vata and Pitta dosha.
- Acharya Charak has mentioned this herb under the category of agrah aushadh varga in Charak Samhita.
- Acharya Sushrut has also mentioned its medicinal properties in their respective textbooks.
- In Bhavprakash nighantu, he has also put his eye on this plant's properties.
Shloka - 1
नारिकेलफलानि च । बृहणंस्निग्धशीतानि बल्यानि मधुराणि च।।
Reference - Charak Samhita Sutra Sthana / 27
Interpretation of Shloka - The fruit of the coconut tree is helpful in strengthening, and moisturising is a coolant in nature, boosts the power, and is sweet in taste.
Shloka - 2
नालिकेरं गुरु स्निगधम् पित्तघ्नं स्वादु शीतलम्।
बलमांसप्रदम् हृद्यं बृहणं बस्तिशोधनम्।।
Reference - Sushrut Samhita Sutra Sthana / 46
Interpretation of Shloka - Coconut is heavy, moisturising, pacifying pitta, sweet in taste, and coolant in properties. This herb is very effective for providing nourishment to muscles, acts as a heart tonic, and strengthens, as well as is used to detoxify the body.
Shloka - 3
नारिकेलफलं शीतं दुर्जरम् बस्तिशोधनम्।
विष्टंभि बृहणं बल्यं वातपित्तास्रदाहनुत्।।
विशेषतः कोमलनारिकेलं निहन्ति पित्तज्वरपित्तदोषान्।
तदैव जीर्ण गुरु पित्तकारि विदहि विष्टंभि मतम् भिषग्भिः।।
तस्याम्भाः शीतलम् हृदयं दीपनं शुक्रलम् लघु।
पिपासापित्तजित्स्वादु बस्तिशुद्धिकरम् परम्।।
नारिकेलस्य तालस्य खर्जूरस्य शिरांसि तू।
कषायस्निगधमधुरबृहणानि गुरुणि च।।
Reference - Bhavprakash Nighantu / Amradiphala Varga
Interpretation of Shloka - Coconut fruit is a coolant, heavy in digestion, detoxifies the urinary system, vishtambhak, strengthens, and provides nourishment to the body. It specifically works on the Vata, pitta, bleeding disorders, and burning sensation. This plant is used to pacify the pittaja jwara and pitta dosha. Its old fruit is basically heavy, aggravates pitta, and is vidahi and vishtambhak in quality. Coconut water is a sweet, cool, and heat tonic that enhances the digestive fire, increases the sperm count, is light in digestion, rectifies dehydration, and controls the pitta dosha. The pulp of coconut is slightly astringent, sweet, moist, and heavy, and provides strength to the body.
Shloka - 4
नारिकेलो गुरुः स्निगधः शीतः पित्तविनाशनः।
अर्धपक्वास्तृषाशोषशमनो दुर्जरः परः।।
Reference - Raj Nighantu
Interpretation of Shloka - Coconut is heavy, moist, and coolant, and is used to rectify the pitta dosha when it is halved and ripened it reduces dehydration, along with inflammation, this also acts as the best anti-aging.
Shloka - 5
नारिकेलप्रसूनम् तु रक्तपित्तप्रमेहनुत्।
रक्तातिसारं हरति महालोहितनाशनं।।
शीतलं सोमरोगघ्नं विबंधं कुरुते भृशम्।
Reference - Kaiyyadev Nighantu
Interpretation of Shloka - Coconut is good for bleeding disorders, motions mixed with blood can also be treated with this, it is a coolant so can help in curing the somrog (Rajyakshma / Tuberculosis), and constipation very well.
- Botanical Name - Cocus nucifera
- Family - Arecaceae
- Genus - Cocus
- Species - C. Nucifera
- Dridaphal - Hardened fruit
- Kurchsheershaka - The head of the tree looks like a brush
- Skandaphala - Rich in southern parts of India
- Dakshinatyak - Is profoundly located in the southern states
- Sadaphala - Fruits are always present over the tree
- Rasaphala - Consists of good taste
- Trinaraj - King of grasses
- Tung - Very tall tree
- Putodak or toyagarbha - Water is inside the fruit
- Coconut palms are found in tropical coastal areas and originate from Indomalaya.
- The height may go up to 25 metres (80 feet) from a swollen base and is a slender, ringed trunk with a graceful crown of giant featherlike leaves, its stem is lean.
- It has pinnate leaves 4–6 metres or 15–22 feet long, and pinnae 60–90 cm or 2–3 feet long.
- Mature fruits, ovoid or ellipsoid in shape, showy, edible. It's a drupe, not a nut, having a dark brown colored external colour.
- The flowers are yellow in colour.
- It usually dries during the summer season but it may also be seen like this is found in all the seasons.
This herb is explained by Acharya Priya Vrat Sharma and is highly focused as an anti-epileptic herb and is used to pacify the Kapha and Vata dosha.
- Rasa (Taste) - Madhur (Sweet)
- Guna (Quality) - Guru (Heavy), Snigadh (Moist), oily, unctuous
- Veerya (Potency) - Sheeta (Cold)
- Vipaka (Post digestive effect) - Madhur (Sweet)
- Karma (Action) - Balances the Vata and Pitta dosha
- Projyang (Part used) - flowers, Roots, Fruits, and oil preparation are used for this plant
Effects On Doshas
- Its therapeutic effects on Doshas are to balance the Vata and Pitta dosha.
- This plant helps to improve strength and provides immunity to needy people.
- This herb balances the Vata and Pitta dosha with its guru and snigdha guna it works on the Vata and with its Madhur or sheetal gunna it works on the pitta dosha.
- It is lighter in digestion so managing high cholesterol levels reduces oxidative cell damage.
- Coconut water is useful in the removal of kidney stones due to the presence of bioactive compounds.
- Coconut water is easy and light to digest, reduces the risk of heart attacks, and provides almost all the daily-required essential nutrition.
- Highly rich in minerals and vitamins, like sodium, potassium, and magnesium.
- It provides strength to eye muscles and better night vision to a great extent.
- Balances the electrolyte imbalance so it can be given to the patients who are suffering from dehydration, fever, excessive thirst, and difficulty in passing the urine.
- It can be used as a cosmetic product like sun protection, moisturiser, etc.
- Dysmenorrhea or leukorrhea is used in various gynaecological and many obstetrical disorders.
- It may improve the sexual vigor power, hyperacidity, ulcers, and general debility as well as weakness.
- This is the old method for maintaining black hair, removing the alopecia condition, dandruff, and many other skin-related conditions.
- Lauric acid present in coconut helps in balancing hormones that may cause disturbance in our physical and mental health.
- Diarrhoea and blood mixed diarrhoea can be improved with the help of decoction of its leaves and raw fruit.
- Its water is used to wash the ulcers or non-healing wounds.
- Coconut water is good for the retention of urine, and its flower decoction is used to increase urine frequency.
- Its ripened fruit is good as an aphrodisiac and is also beneficial for inducing menstrual flow.
- Its fruit can be used in the quantity of 10-20 grams.
- Its oil can be used in 10 to 20 drops.
- Kshar preparation is about 1 to 2 grams.
Dr. Meenakshi Chauhan
MD (ALT. MEDICINE) View Profile