Boerhavia Diffusa - Punarnava

Botanical Name : Boerhavia Diffusa
Sanskrit / Indian Name : Punarnava
Common Name: : Hog Weed, Spreading Hog Weed, Pig Weed

Punarnava is known by the botanical name of Boerhavia diffusa and belongs to Nyctaginaceae family. It is one of the best diuretic known among a variety of herbs mentioned in the Ayurvedic text.

Punarnava as its name suggest means tendency to rejuvenate. Although it acts as a rejuvenator for all the systems of the body but basically it works as a rejuvenator for the urinary system.

Packaging: 60 Capsules per Bottle

Dosage: 1 capsule twice a day before meals.

Punarnava is known by many synonyms as vayasthapana i.e. it promotes longevity, Kshara i.e. helps suppressing cough, svedopaga i.e. modifier of sweating therapy anuvasanopag i.e. modifier of vasti (enema) therapy. Punarnava is also called as Ashmarighana i.e it helps to flush out renal stones from the kidney, Shothagna i.e. alleviates edema. It is a perennial kind of herb found in all over India mainly in water, lands and roadsides as well. It is highly branched weed with two leaves present on a single node. The flowers are red in color and small in size. The fruits have one seed present with ridges on its surface.

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Punarnava gives flowers and fruits in rainy season. It has two varieties as described in ayurvedic text i.e white and red variety of more variety i.e blue Punarnava can also be found as mentioned in other ayurvedic text named rajnighantu. It has been mentioned in the ayurvedic text that the white Punarnava variety is what we commonly call Punarnava i.e boerhaavia diffusa and the red Punarnava variety is Trianthema portulacastrum which is generally used to adultrate Punarnava roots. Thus white Punarnava is basically used for the medicinal purpose. The white variety of Punarnava works as all the three dosha (vata, pitta and kapha) shamak i.e. it suppresses all the three aggravated doshas whereas the red Punarnava variety aggravates the vata dosha and suppresses the pitta dosha. As a whole both the varieties of punaranava are laghu(light) and ruksha(dry) in properties.

Punarnava also known by the botanical name of red hogweed is a very effective diuretic
It works very well on the urinary system and it targets directly the damaged nephrons(kidney’s basic functional unit) which get damaged specially in cases of high blood sugar level i.e in diabetic people. Punarnava speeds up the filtration process of kidneys and flushes out the excessive fluids and other waste products

Punarnava is very effective in treating obesity thus it is a very important ingredient for a variety of patent Ayurvedic medicines used to treat obesity. It also acts as anti-inflammatory drug. It is good for respiratory problems as well as it acts on the kapha dosha and thus suppresses the mucous formation. Thus Punarnava forms an integral part of many ayurvedic medicines that helps curing asthma, dysnoea and other breathing problems as it helps in the removal of mucus from the bronchial tubes. In conditions like pneumonia or dysnoea(difficulty in breathing) Punarnava is given along with Vacha(another Ayurvedic herb)

As Punarnava works as a diuretic it can cure the conditions like Anasarca( i.e generalized body swelling). It can even be used in serious conditions like congestive cardiac problems. One of the Ayurvedic preparation that is used to treat anemia i.e. Punarnava mandoor has purnanava as an integral part .This preparation is used to increase the Hb levels in the body and thus cures iron deficiency anaemia.

Punarnava along with other ayurvedic herbs as Rasna, Shunthi etc is used to treat swelling in conditions like rheumatoid arthritis. In such cases rasna works as analgesic, shunthi works as amahar i.e. does detoxification and Punarnava relieves the swelling.

Punarnava works as a very good tonic as well in general debilities cases. It works as rasayana for the body as it rejuvenates the body by cleansing it with its unique property of flushing out the mala(toxins) from the dhatus(body tissues), balances the doshas and opening and nourishing the various body channels so that each and every tissue and cell of the body gets proper nutrition and keeps the body fit and fine.

Punaranava is a very good nerve rejuvenator and it is given in cases of sciatica or nervous weakness or even paralysis condition. Externally also it is used for various purposes as in various panchkarma procedures like swedan( fomentation) where Punarnava roots mainly and punaranva plant as a whole is used to relive pain and swelling.

When Punarnava is used in enemas it works as a purgative and treats flatulence. It works as a mild laxative and it enhances the appetite thus can be given in various gastric troubles including constipation which is a most common trouble faced by people these days.

Punarnava can even be used to treat jaundice. It can be given in cases where intoxication due to serpent and rat bites has occurred. Sometimes fresh root juice of Punarnava is put into eyes so as to get relief from various eye ailments like night blindness and conjunctivitis.

Paste made from Punarnava roots is applied on the injured wounds as it helps drying up the oozing out of that wound.

Also Punarnava can be used as in the form of dressing for various swellings or ulcers.
Punarnava is also helpful for many skin disorders.

Punarnava is very effective in treating disease like dropsy which is a condition where excess of fluid gets accumulated in the tissues and cavities of the body,

Punarnava can also be used to treat ascetic where fluid gets accumulated in abdominal cavity. Mainly it treats the ascitis which is caused due to some liver disorder. According to ayurveda ascitis is described as jalodar roga where pradhan dosha is vata which blocks the channels of air within the body thus making the water gets accumulated in the peritoneal cavity of abdomen i.e. between muscles and abdominal skin.

Punarnava comes in various ayurvedic preparations in the market as Punarnavaasav, Punarnava mandoor, Punarnava ambu, Punarnava guggulu, Punarnava ghrit etc. Sometimes Punarnava can be given alone in the form of swarasa. The dose of punaranava given to a particular patient depends on the condition of the disease and the type of preparation of punaranava prescribed.

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