Ativisha

 

Botanical Name : Aconitum hrterophyllum
Family: Ranunculaceae
Subfamily: Ranunculoideae
Tribes: Aconiteae
Genus: Aconitum
Species: Aconitum heterophyllum

Other Common Names: Atees [E], Atees,Indian [E], Atis [E], Ativisha [E], Vajji Turki [E],

Vernacular names: sans- Ativisha ,Hin- Atish, Eng- Indian Atis

Other Names: Cao wu / Tsao wu
Parts used: Underground stem and root.
Habitat: Usually found on humus-rich soils in the alpine and subalpine zones, and in forests, 2300 – 2900 metres. India; Iran; Sanscrit; Us

Description:This plant thrives in most soils and in the shade of trees. This plant is so tough it even grows marvelously in heavy clay soils and well in the open woodlands. Most of all it prefers a moist soil which contains the characteristic of calcium carbonate, calcium, or limestone, also in the sun or semi shade. Other plants of this genus (a group of species exhibiting similar characteristics) seem to be immune to the rabbits and deer for they do not want to eat it. The Ativisha (Aconitum heterophylum) has small, yellowish-white, bulbous roots, which are shaped like a large bud about four to six times that of a jasmine bud….

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Part of the root crosses over and is milkey white with four black dots like banana seeds. The root is best harvested in the autumn as soon as the plant dies down and is dried for later use. This plant has many green leaves and grows as a greedy plant, inhibiting the growth of nearby species. The main place this herb is found is in sub-alpine and alpine regions; Himalayas from Indus to Kumaon.

Cultivation details:-
Thrives in most soils and in the light shade of trees. Grows well in heavy clay soils. Prefers a moist soil in sun or semi-shade. Prefers a calcareous soil. Grows well in open woodlands.

Members of this genus seem to be immune to the predations of rabbits and deer.

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A greedy plant, inhibiting the growth of nearby species, especially legumes.
Propagation:-
Seed – best sown as soon as it is ripe in a cold frame. The seed can be stratified and sown in spring but will then be slow to germinate. When large enough to handle, prick the seedlings out into individual pots and grow them on in a cold frame for their first winter. Plant them out in late spring or early summer.

Division – best done in spring but it can also be done in autumn. Another report says that division is best carried out in the autumn or late winter because the plants come into growth very early in the year.
Harvesting:The root is best harvested in the autumn as soon as the plant dies down and is dried for later use. This is a very poisonous plant and should only be used with extreme caution and under the supervision of a qualified practitioner.
Therapeutic Uses:
Today Aconitum heterophyllum is used in cases of diarrhea, liver disorders, hemorrhoids, edema, dysentery, inflammatory infections with cough, cold, flu, or dyspepsia and is a mild diuretic. It stimulates the flow of breast milk in nursing mothers and when taken regularly by nursing mothers, helps prevent colic in their babies. It is also used to treat headaches caused from eating excessive amounts of greasy foods, thirst associated with fever, yellowish sclera (white outer coat enclosing the eyeball), nausea, vomiting, throat pain, and lung and eye inflammation. The root is also used for treating digtestive disorders such as anorexia, piles, diarrhea, vomiting and worms. It is said to help revitalize sexual desire and reduce obesity. The fried root is analgesic, anti-inflammatory, aphrodisiac, astringent, cholagogue, febrifuge, and tonic. It is used in India in the treatment of dyspepsia, diarrhea and coughs. Used in Tibetan medicine, where it is said to have a bitter taste and cooling potency. Also used to treat poisoning from scorpion or snake bites, the fevers of contagious diseases and inflammation of the intestines. This herb is just wonderful in many afflictions. The scientists and pharmacists have also found that Acontum hterophyllum has also been useful in the following diseases; Abdominal Distention, Amenorrhoea, Amnesia, Anorexia Nervosa, Bronchitis, Colic, Common Cold, Dysmenorrhoes, Fevers, Flatulence, Flu and Halitosis (bad breath).

The seeds of this plant are also used in medicine, mainly as a stimulant, aromatic, emmenaguogue, galactagogue, stomachic, carminative, antipyretic and anathemmatic. Along with antispasmodics they relieve period pain. They are also useful in indigestion (especially stress-related), hyperacidity, hiccup and abdominal pain in children and adults. Chewing the seeds removes bad breath. Research has also established that the essential oil has antibacterial properties, which inhibit the growth of harmful intestinal bacteria.

Powdered root mixed with honey is effective for children suffering from cough, coryza, fever and vomiting.

Root is considered to be aphrodisiac, digestive, valuable febrifuge, bitter tonic and useful in throat infections, abdominal pain and gastralgia .

They are useful in dysentery, stomach disorders, fever, malarial fever, vomitings, haemorrhoids, haemorrhages, internal inflammatory conditions, They are highly recommended in diseases for children.

According to  Ayurveda :
It is katu, ushnaveerya, tikta; beneficial in deranged kapha and pitta;antipyretic, antidysenteric and antidiarrhoeal, expectorant, antidotal and antiemetic.
Medicinal Uses: Analgesic; Antiinflammatory; Antiperiodic; Aphrodisiac; Astringent; Cholagogue; Febrifuge; Tonic.

The dried root is analgesic, anti-inflammatory, antiperiodic, aphrodisiac, astringent, cholagogue, febrifuge and tonic. It is used in India in the treatment of dyspepsia, diarrhoea and coughs. It is also used in Tibetan medicine, where it is said to have a bitter taste and a cooling potency. It is used to treat poisoning from scorpion or snake bites, the fevers of contagious diseases and inflammation of the intestines.

Precautions:The whole Aconitum heterophyllum plant is highly toxic, even simple skin contact can cause numbness in people with sensitive skin. In large doses, this herb can cause constipation. Toxic overdoses will cause parasthesia, dry mouth, bradycardia, and in extreme cases, coma. Aconitum heterophyllum is a very poisonous plant and should only be used with extreme caution and under the supervision of a qualified practitioner. As always, when you buy a product alwyays follow the instructions.

Disclaimer:The information presented herein is intended for educational purposes only. Individual results may vary, and before using any supplements, it is always advisable to consult with your own health care provider.
Resources:
http://www.ayurvedakalamandiram.com/herbs.htm#ativisha
http://www.herbalremedies.com/aconitum-information.html

http://www.ibiblio.org/pfaf/cgi-bin/arr_html?Aconitum+heterophyllum

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