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India's Oldest Longevity Tonic

According to Ayurveda, Chyawanprash comes under the category of 'Rasayana' which aims at maintaining youthfulness, vigor, vitality of the body and keeping away aging process, senility and debility. It maintains the proper functioning of the cells and rejuvenates the cells. As such it also keeps away diseases.

The Rasayanas are mean to impart long, healthy, disease free life, intelligence, power of memory, youth and luster. Among all the Rasayanas, Chyawanprash is most useful and famous. It is the most popular rejuvenating Ayurvedic tonic in India having a consistency of Jam and consisting of about 35 natural herbs including Amla (Embellica Officinalis) the richest natural source of vitamin C. It works on the immune system of the body protecting body against everyday infections like cough cold and fever. Thus it is very useful in children, old persons, tubercular patients and debilitated persons."

I clipped the above quote from an Indian web site. Obsessing a little here. Those of you who have listened to the Kitchen Doctor tapes have heard this story:

Long, long ago, there was a sage in India named Chyawan who lived in a forest. His hair was matted and he was covered with tree growth after years of meditating in the same place. A young princess was blindfolded and dancing in the forest when her hands touched the hair of the sage. Her father, the king, explained to the sage that it was the custom in his country that a woman could only touch one man in her lifetime. He thus requested the sage to marry to daughter. Chyawan asked if he could have two months to prepare for the wedding for he wished to be young again so as to afford his wife conjugal bliss. Thereupon, he developed the recipe for longevity that has remained India's most popular remedy, some say for 2000 years, others since the times of the Vedas.

Today, there are many recipes for Chyawanprash, ranging in ingredients from a mere 20 or so herbs and spices to 70 or 80 ingredients. However, the main ingredient, regardless of the exact formula is always amla or amalaki, a tropical gooseberry that is the world's richest source of vitamin C. It is, moreover, a source that remains stable in storage for years. The rest of the ingredients vary from regenerative herbs for the reproductive system such as ashwagandha and shatavari to spices that aid assimilation and digestion.

In Ayurveda, it is believed that most disease stems from problems in the digestive system. The Iroquois and many others share this belief. Ayurveda breaks digestion into three stages: the stomach, the small intestine, and the large intestines. Food that is assimilated in the stomach is used very quickly for the building of fluids, blood and lymph. What is assimilated in the small intestine affects mainly muscles and fat; and what is assimilated in the colon is used to regenerate the skin, bones, hair, nerve sheaths, reproductive fluids, and brain. Fragility of the bones and senility are thus colon problems and they are "vata" conditions, derangements of the air and ether. All proper maintenance requires good digestion and assimilation; otherwise, worn out tissues will not be regenerated, i.e. replaced by healthy new tissues.

A "rasayana" is a formula for just such tissue rejuvenation, and Chyawanprash is the most famous, and in my opinion, the most effective of these highly esoteric remedies. Moreover, it has been so thoroughly studied that it is legal to market Chyawanprash as an antioxidant, the best that has ever been researched in modern laboratories.

So, what I have been doing for years is trying various Chyawanprash concoctions. I used to import one from India produced by a lovely lady doctor named Smita Naram. It was expensive because she used fresh amla. I tried making my own for a while (with dry amla but the amount of honey needed to deal with the sourness of the amla was intimidating.) I later used a brand recommended by David Frawley. It was quite sattvic, i.e., a little sweeter than some versions and not as spicy. For the last couple of years, we have been carrying a nicely packaged brand which is the same old Dabur in fancier containers. Yesterday, I tried three versions of the Banyan Botanicals brand. They do what everyone should have been doing for thousands of years. They are making one especially for those with pitta derangements that is not quite as spicy as the one for vata and kapha derangements. I personally prefer the taste and texture of the pitta formula but I'm a fire type. Then, they make a third one with a mixture of Western gooseberries and amla that is "tridoshic," i.e. balancing to all the doshas.

In my experience, the first thing that happens with use of Chyawanprash is that assimilation of nutrients is greatly improved, and the evidence for this is that people whose hair tends to fall out, especially after shampooing, find that their hair no longer falls out and that it becomes thicker and more its natural color.

Sounding too good to be true? Little by little, all systems of the body work better, but most especially those that relate to the lower chakras.

In India, those with the means to afford Chyawanprash take it every day, usually at least from age 40 onwards. They generally use about 1-3 teaspoons a day.

As one might expect, in India, many people take Chyawanprash in warm milk, but I suggest that most people just eat some straight from the bottle. The taste is interesting, a bit sweet-sour in flavor. Most people are surprised that Chyawanprash tastes as good as it does. My dogs fight over the almost empty containers and all the dogs I've had for the last 20 years prefer Chyawanprash to bones.

Sorry to be so wordy, but I thought many of you would like to know about my find! Banyan's product is very good!!

Chyawanprash, 10 oz.

Traditional Ayurvedic herbal jam made with amalaki, the world"s best source of vitamin C. Chyawanprash is India"s most famous rejuvenative and antioxidant jam. Besides Emblica officinalis, the jam contains ghee (clarified butter), raw honey, and many herbs and spices that together promote deeper assimilation of nutrients.

From the supplier: the "Ayurvedic One-A-Day" with wildcrafted ingredients. The most authentic formula available in the U.S. Imported direct from India with complete safety testing and quality control.

Ingredients: standardized extracts of Indian gooseberry (emblica officinalis), Guduchi (Tinospora cordifolia), Shatawari (asparagus racemosus), Udakiryaka (caesalpinia digyna), Arjun (terminalia arjuna), Japa (herpestis monniera), Shank Pushpi (evolves alsinoides), Ashwagandha (withania somnifera), Bilwa (aegle marmelos), clerodendron phlomidis, Shyonaka (oroxylum indicum), Gunbhari (gmelina arboria), stereospermum suaveolens, Bala (sida cordifolia), Dhatura (desmodium gangeticum), uraria lagopoides, phaseolus tribbus, termanu labiais, Indian Long pepper (piper longum), solanum indicum, Kanta Kari (solanum xanthocarpum), Pistaceo (pistacia integerrima), Bhumy Amalaki (phyllanthus niruri), Draksha (vitis vinifera), Haritaki (terminalia chebula), hedychium spicatm, Musta (cyperus rotundus).

Vadik Herbs,

Chyawanprash, 500 grams (1.1 pounds)

The combination of the 36 selected herbs and fruits along with four food ingredients in this nutritionally rich tonic has traditionally been used to enhance general health, increase mental and physical energy, and support the body"s natural resistance to disease. The principle herb in Chyawanprash, Amla fruit (Amalaki) is fresh (not powdered). Regular consumption of Chyawanprash is believed to rejuvenate and fortify both the mind and body and is beneficial to people of all ages and constitutions.

Ingredients: Amla fruit (Phyllanthus emblica), Indian Kudzu root (Pueraria tuberosa), Long Pepper fruit (Piper longum), Mysore Cardamom seed (Elettaria cardamomum), Malabar nut tree leaf (Justicia adhatoda), Spanish Pellitory root (Anacyclus pyrethrum), Arjuna bark (Terminalia arjuna), Ashwagandha root (Withania somnifera), Shatavari root (Asparagus racemosus), Bacopa leaf (Bacopa monniera), Holy Basil leaf (Ocimum sanctum), Terminalia chebula fruit (Terminalia chebula), Ginger rhizome (Zingiber officinale), European grape fruit (Vitis vinifera), Licorice root (Glycyrrhiza glabra), Sacred Lotus flower (Nelumbo nucifera), Jatamansi root (Nardostachys jatamansi), Neem leaf (Azadirachta indica), Tribulus fruit (Tribulus terrestris), Bael fruit (Aegle marmelos), Indian Tinospora stem (Tinospora cordifolia), Phyllanthus herb (Phyllanthus niruri), Zedoary rhizome (Curcuma zedoaria), Cyperus rhizome (Cyperus rotundus), Indian Elecampane root (Inula racemosa), Heart Leaf Sida root (Sida cordifolia), Himalayan Pistachio fruit (Pistacia integerrima), Leptadenia leaves (Leptadenia reticulata), Boerhavia root (Boerhavia diffusa), Fig (Ficus carica), Clove bud (Syzygium aromaticum), Cinnamon bark (Cinnamomum verum), Indian Cassia leaves (Cinnamomum tamala), Mesua flower (Mesua ferrea), Saffron stigma (Crocus sativus) with Sugarcane (Saccharum officinarum), Clarified butter (Ghee), Honey, and Sesame oil.

Himalayan Institute,



A Life of Balance
Ayurveda: A Life of Balance
The Complete Guide to Ayurvedic Nutrition & Body Types with Recipes


Secrets of Healing
Ayurveda: Secrets of Healing
The complete Ayurvedic guide to healing through Pancha Karma seasonal therapies, diet, herbal remedies and memory.




Introduction to Ayurveda

Digestion, Ayurvedic Concept of Digestive Fire || Parasites

Chyawanprash || Hinga Shtak, Digestive Formula || Kicharee Recipe

Kapha Dosha || Vata Dosha || Churnas

Taste and the Elements || Smell || Ayurvedic Toothpastes

Dosha Balance



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*The material provided on this site is for informational purposes only. The author is not a medical doctor. The statements made represent the author's personal opinions and are not intended to replace the services of health care professionals. The content and products discussed have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. The information on this page and the products available on this site are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.