Botanical name: Nardostachys jatamansi
Plant part: Roots
Cultivation: Wild-harvested (Sustainably sourced)
Extraction: Steam distilled
Jatamansi aka Spikenard, Nard, Nardin and Muskroot is an endangered flowering herb from the Valerian “Valerianaceae” family, that grows wild predominantly in Kumaon and other regions of the Himalayas.
The name Jatamansi is derived from 2 words “Jata” which means dread locks and “Manasi” meaning toward human, when you look at the root of this amazing herb you will understand the dreadlock part of its name.
The dark green, essential oil also called Himalayan Spikenard is steam distilled from the roots of Nardostachys jatamansi sustainably gathered by community forests in Eastern Himalayas is very similar to Valerian root Essential oil but with a sweeter, more pleasant scent and less dulling in its effect and is thus usually preferable to aromatherapists and end users.
Both the herb itself and its essential oil were used traditionally in various ancient civilizations and in both Ayurvedic (a healthy lifestyle system used widely in India) and Unani (Persian-Arabic medicine system based on the teachings of the Greek physicians Hippocrates and Galen) for skincare and in maintaining uterine health. Historical records show it was also used by the ancient physicians Dioscorides and Apicius.
Studies have been carried out on the efficacy of the herb Jatamansi which is known for its calming and sedative properties on the nervous system. The Ayurvedic Encyclopaedia - Charaka Samhita- recommends Jatamansi as a tonic for the brain for improving memory strength, in treating insomnia, mental instability, convulsions, spasms, stress its rhizomes have been used as an excellent treatment for epilepsy.
With a high concentration of Sesquiterpenes i.e. natural chemicals believed to have the ability to penetrate the blood-brain barrier (research still ongoing) and provide brain cells with oxygen to improve cognitive function and memory as well as Iriodoids which protect the brain from neural cell death. There is ongoing promising research on Jatamansi EO as an effective treatment for minimizing and slowing down the symptoms of Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s diseases.
An amazing natural remedy in treating depression and its symptoms as it helps increase serotonin, norepinephrine, dopamine production in the brain. This is significant because low levels of these neurotransmitters has been linked to depression. Its capabilities have been compared to both Tofranil™ and Zoloft™ which are OTC medicines but without the unpleasant side effects.
Studies found Jatamansi EO to be one of the most active Essential Oils against C. jejuni which is a bacteria found in animal species and one of the most common causes of human gastroenteritis in the world. It also helps slow the growth of various fungi including Aspergillus flavus, Aspergillus niger, and Fusarium oxysporum.
Not only is this one of the most spiritual essential oils, it is a great choice for anxiety, stress, overthinking, insomnia, as an insecticidal, fungal and bacterial infections and in skincare it is especially effective on aging, mature skin, eczema, rashes and other skin irritations. The famed Ayurvedic healer Sushruta aka “Father of Surgery” incorporated this herb into many medicinal essential oils prescribed for edema, hemorrhoids, arthritis, gout, fractures, and obstinate skin diseases, mostly for external application.
This versatile herb has been highly regarded as a valuable commodity in ancient times, with use dating back to the ancient Egyptians and Romans. It is also believed to be the Spikenard or Nard mentioned in both the Qu'ran and the Bible, where it was said to have been used as an anointing oil or incense.
"Then took Mary a pound of ointment of spikenard, very costly, and anointed the feet of Jesus, and wiped his feet with her hair: and the house was filled with the odour of the ointment."
— John 12:3 (KJV)
Unfortunately, overharvesting of Spikenard to produce this amazing, versatile Essential Oil with an intense, spicy and woody scent and plethora of curative benefits has caused endangerment to this highly revered plant. Research has shown its curative properties to include strong activity as a nervine, antiseptic, anti-fungal, antiarrhythmic, anticonvulsant, hepaprotective, hypolipidemic, diuretic, laxative, anti-inflammatory, tonic, anti-pyretic, fungi toxic, deodorant, fungicidal, sedative, anti-depressant and calmative.
Jatamansi (Spikenard) Essential Oil
- Jatamansi Essential oil is a depurative and used to help maintain the health and reproductive abilities of both the uterus and ovaries by helping to stimulate and purify both organs and promoting the secretion of hormones e.g. estrogen and progesterone.
- Its powerful adaptogenic effects help alleviate stress, tension and anxiety by balancing biochemical reactions in the body.
- Jatamansi EO is a hypotensive and helps lower blood pressure by dilating the arteries, reducing oxidative stress and keeping stress levels down. It also works to optimize heart function, prevent alterations in the lipid profile and regulate blood circulation and heart rate making it a great natural remedy in stabilizing blood pressure and treating hypertension.
- It also helps enhance the brain and calm the mind to aid memory, learning, concentration and brain function.
- With both anti-convulsive and anti-arrhythmic activities which increases the seizure threshold and reduce heart palpitations respectively and its ability to reverse the symptoms of chronic fatigue syndrome, beneficial to people prone to convulsions, hysteria, epilepsy, dyskinesia (abnormal, uncontrollable, involuntary movements) etc.
- Revered in Ayurveda for its powerful neuro-protective activities, Jatamansi is widely used for its cognitive, psychological and neurological benefits with studies showing its efficacy in calming the nervous-system and benefits in treating issues like hysteria, nervous breakdowns, hyperactivity in children (over 6 years old), bi-polar disorder, delusions and other certain psychological problems.
- A great natural sedative to help promote overall relaxation and healthy sleep patterns which is a great benefit when dealing with insomnia
- Helps reduce oxidative damage to DNA and fat cells and exhibits a high reduction capability and powerful free radical scavenging activity to protect the body from inflammation and ensure all body systems run properly.
- Helps expel excess mucus and phlegm accumulated in the chest and nasal passages and respiratory tract to open up blocked passages and clear congestion to treat coughs, asthma, colds, spasmodic and or whooping cough.
- Its powerful antispasmodic and mild emmenagogue properties Jatamansi helps ease menstrual cramps and reduce uterine inflammation to treat dysmenorrhea and stimulate the uterus to promote menstruation when it is obstructed to ensure regularity.
- A great natural remedy for alleviating issues relating to PMS, menopause or post hysterectomy symptoms including mood swings, insomnia, dizziness, fatigue, headaches and concentration problems.
- ts hepaprotective ability is beneficial in preventing the enlargement of the liver in hepatitis and jaundice and anti-inflammatory properties help in the treatment of pancreatitis.
- An excellent digestive aid for gut health and is used as a natural laxative for treating constipation by stimulating the digestive system to promote regular excretion without drying out the intestinal walls.
- Calms the mind and body to relieve headaches and migraines, soothe and relieve pain from leg cramps and sore feet, boost circulation and oxygenation of cells to reduce inflammation, pain and treat haemorrhoids and varicose veins.
- Helps purify the blood, boost the immune system and regulates blood glucose levels by normalizing elevated blood sugar and preventing insulin resistance.
- It is also beneficial in treating neuralgia, sciatica, fevers, angina, muscular spasms, allergies and in the circulation of blood and nymph.