Reference: Rasa Tarangini 12/17 – 18

Introduction

Shankha Bhasma is an Ayurvedic preparation from Conch shell which is a powder of a substance obtained by calcination. It balances Vata and Pitta Dosha It is useful excellent Ayurvedic remedy for digestive system complaints like gastritis, abdominal pain, malabsorption syndrome etc. This Bhasma has properties to improve digestion, absorbs excess liquid content, improves appetite and cures gastritis, acidity, nausea etc.

Do you know about Shankha?

It is a soft body organism that lives inside dense, very hard and calcareous shell or conch. Shankha is also known as "Indian conch". Two types of Shankha is available one is called Vama varta (opening of this shankha is on left side) and Dakshin varta (opening of this shankha is on right side). For medicinal preparation "Vama varta" shankha is used.

Different names of Shankha:

  • Sanskrit name: Shankha
  • English name: Conch shell
  • Hindi name: Shankh
  • Kannada name: Shankha
  • Gujarati name: Shankh
  • Malayalam name: Shankham

Ingredients

  • Purified Conch shell
  • Aloe vera juice or lemon juice

Method of Preparation

Preparation of this Bhasma is by use of purified Conch shell. There are various different techniques for its preparation. Any method can be used. Here is one of the process.

First of all grinding purified shankha powder with aloe vera juice or lemon juice, and made into disc shaped cakes. This then dried and burnt in the absence of air, at a temperature of 800 – 900 degree Celsius and then it is allowed for self-cooling. This process is repeated twice to obtain bhasma.

Medicinal Properties

  • Rasa (Taste): Katu (Pungent)
  • Guna (Quality): Laghu (Light), Ruksha (Dry), Tikshna (Sharp)
  • Veerya (Potency): Sheeta (Cold)
  • Vipaka (Taste conversion after digestion): Madhura (Sweet)
  • Effects on Tridoshas: Balances Vata and Pitta dosha.

Therapeutic Uses

  • Shankha Bhasma has ability to easily absorb and compensate the calcium required by the body.
  • It is coolant by nature and can improve skin complexion.
  • Useful remedy for gastritis, abdominal colic, vomiting, nausea, malabsorption syndrome, dyspepsia, acne, etc.
  • It is a natural source of calcium and vitamin C which is good for the development and maintenance of healthy bones, teeth and cell membranes. Therefore beneficial in growing children, adolescents and post-menopausal women who need more calcium.
  • This bhasma provides relief from the condition such as calcium deficiency without causing any side effect like Constipation and acid formation in stomach.

Health Benefits

  • Anti-inflammatory: Beneficial in inflammatory conditions.
  • Antioxidant: Helps in detoxification of body.
  • Antispasmodic: Reduce pain due to antispasmodic action.
  • Digestive stimulant: Increases digestive fire of an individual.
  • Anti-diarrheal: It controls & manages diarrhea.
  • Anti-emetic: Effective in nausea & vomiting.
  • Anti-ulcer: Removes ulcers from body.
  • Antacid: Reduces hyperacidity, gastritis, bloating and flatulence problems.

Indications

  • Indigestion
  • Loss of appetite
  • Bloating
  • Abdominal distension
  • Acne
  • Skin diseases
  • Hepatomegaly
  • Splenomegaly
  • Irritable bowel syndrome
  • Flatulence
  • Hiccup
  • Gastritis
  • Duodenal ulcers
  • Asthma
  • Lung diseases
  • Bronchitis
  • Jaundice

Contraindication

  • Self-medication can prove risky.
  • Have this medicine in accurate dose and for restrictedperiod of time, as suggested by doctor.
  • Keep out of the reach and sight of children.
  • Store it in a dry and cool place.
  • Avoid inconstipation problem.
  • This Bhasma isalso contraindicated in cracked skin & fissures.

Dosage

Take 250 mg - 500 mg of Bhasma once or twice daily before or after having food or as recommended by Ayurvedic doctor.

Traditional administration was along with honey, lemon juice, and triphala kashaya etc.

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