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Khas Health Benefits, Uses, Dosage and Side Effects

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By NS Desk 21-Dec-2020

Khas Health Benefits

Khas Health Benefits: Among numerous herbal medications available from the ancient Ayurveda, Vetiveriazizanioides(L.), also known as Khas or Ushir in Hindi, can be named a prominent one. It is widely used in the perfume industry for medicinal aspects, e.g., skin problems, sweating, or fever. Khas is usually found in India, Myanmar, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, and some Southwest Asia and tropical Africa parts.  In the Indian demographic aspect, Khas grows mostly in lower hilly regions ascending to 1200m, especially on the banks of rivers and rich marshy soil.
 
The fibrous roots of the densely tufted grass, which usually grow around 2 mm in diameter, are the plant's assorted part for its fragrant and coolant nature. From taxonomical aspects, VS-01, the south Indian dominant species of Khas, is found to contain up to 1% of fragrant oils (Amalgamation of Allokhusiol, Benzoic acid, Eugenol, Vanillin, and other esters that create the fragrant nature) whereas, other Indian species, e.g., VS-03 are reported to contain much lesser content of aromatic compound concentration, around 0.3%.
 
However, almost all the taxonomical variants of Khas are found to have medicinal and aesthetic properties, from both interior and exterior usage aspects. The following sub-sections present a brief and tabulated illustration on the usage of Khas from internal and external usage aspects and scientific and ayurvedic usages. 
 
INTERNAL USAGE
As mentioned, Khas has been reported as a medicinal plant from Ayurvedic aspects from ancient times. As per the Charaka made Ayurvedic classification of herbs, Khas is categorized as helpful in problems like Stanyajanana (Lactation agent), Dahaprashamana (Burning sensation reliever), and Pacana, Pittaghna (Digestion agent) as well when used internally or orally. However, in the modern advancement of science and medicines, it is also important to assess Ayurvedic medicines scientifically to understand its pros and cons from a scientific approach. The following table lists the major internal usage of Khas and illustrates the Ayurvedic and scientific findings comparatively.  
 
 

Issue

Scientific aspect

Ayurvedic aspect

Potential Dose

Form of usage

Indigestion and vomit

Khas consists of volatile organic oils that help to stop involuntary movements in the body like vomiting.

Khas has Pachanand Vaminutpropertiesthat help to improve digestion and vomit.

1. Take 5-6 teaspoons of Khas juice.

2. Add 250 ml water and stir well.

3. Drink the mix once or twice before meals.

KhasSharbat

Urinary disease

Khas consists of tannins that possess antibacterial activity and can be effective against urinary tract infections from bacterial strains.

Khas has Mehanut and Mutrakirchrahara properties that are useful in urinary tract disorders and diabetes.

1. Take 5-6 teaspoons of Khas juice.

2. Add 250 ml water and stir well.

3. Drink the mix once or twice before meals.

Khas Sharbat

Piles

There is not evident scientific evidence to support the use of Khas in the treatment of piles.

Khas has Stanyajanana property, which helps in piles as a laxative. 

1. Take 5-6 teaspoons of Khas juice.

2. Add 250 ml water and stir well.

3. Drink the mix once or twice before meals.

Khas Sharbat

Rheumatic pain

Khas root decoction consists of analgesic chemicals that can help relieve pain and swelling from rheumatoid arthritis.

Khas possesses Vataghna and Pachana properties that help in curing the AamDosha of toxin sequestration in the body.

1. Take 5-6 teaspoons of Khas juice.

2. Add 250 ml water and stir well.

3. Drink the mix once or twice before meals.

Khas Sharbat

Insomnia

Khas contains different antioxidants that remove free radicals and acts as a sedative.

Khas possesses Vata balancing property that helps to cure Anidra.

Same as above

Khas Sharbat

 
PREVENTIVE MEASURES IN INTERNAL USE
Although Khas is reported to possess different medicinal uses, some cautions can also be taken as countermeasures. The major cautions are needed to be taken in terms of the following points.
 
● Pregnancy: Regular doses of Khas during pregnancy can lead to miscarriage due to complex Esters' presence.
 
● Breastfeeding: The basic nature (pH > 7) and Tannin's presence may affect the quality of lactation of breastmilk.
 
● Existing fever: The Sita (cold) property of Khas can lead to the formation and accumulation of mucus in the respiratory passages causing possible difficulty in breathing.
 
EXTERNAL USE
Apart from the above-mentioned internal usage of Khas, it is also found useful when used as a powder or paste to treat acne, skin infection, dry scalp, excessive sweating, and other issues. However, a synthesis from both scientific and ayurvedic aspects is necessary to build confidence in Khas' usage on external health-related issues. The following table summarizes Khas's usage in curing external health issues of scientific and ayurvedic points of view.
 
● It is well used in perfumes, aromatherapy. 
● Its cooling property can heal anything; it can be used as a tonic.
● It can also purify the blood.
● It can treat skin problems.
● It can calm the nervous system.
● It can also treat indigestion, loss of appetite, and ringworm.
● It can also treat flatulence and gastrointestinal disorders.
● It is used as a cleanser in shampoos, soaps, and perfumes.
● It gives a cooling effect to our skin.
● It is used in baby products like shampoo, baby cream, and baby powder.
 
It is used in beauty products such as purifying Neem facewash, oil clear mud face pack, anti-wrinkle creams, etc.
 
SYNONYMS
Sorghum zizanioides, Vetivera muricata ( Retz) Griseb, Vetiveria odorota Virey, Vetiveria odoratissima Lem; Vetiveria zizanioides Nash; Phalaris zizanioides L.
 
REGIONAL NAME
In English, it is called Cuscus grass; in Sanskrit, it is called Virana, Sevya, Adhaya; Bengali: Venarramula, khaskhas; Marathi: Bala; Oriya: Ushira; Telegu: Vetivelu; Tamil: Vilamichaver, Vetiver; Punjabi: Panni; Assamese: Ushir, Virina; Gujrati: SugandhiValo; Malyalam: Lamajja.
 
PLACES
This plant is cultivated in India, Bangladesh, and Myanmar, and also in Africa. In our country, it is mainly found in hill areas and the river banks of marshy soil. This plant consists of fibrous roots of tufted grass. It has some features:
● The plant is longitudinally grooved.
● It has different colors such as cream, grey or brown, light yellow, and it varies from time to time.
● It is short and splintery.
● Strong in the aroma.
● It tastes slightly bitter.
 
AYURVEDIC PROPERTIES:
It acts like a diuretic used in dysuria. The use of this fantastic herb can prevent urinary retention. It also prevents a burning sensation in gastritis. It is used in neuropathy. It can cool down the burning sensation in the eyes and also relieves exhaustion. The roots of the plant are very effective and used for several purposes. It can cure fatigue. In neuralgia treatment, this herb has greater importance. It can also cure bloating and constipation. The plant can also be used to treat paralysis.
 
Roots are very effective to fight against intestinal parasites and fever. Various skin diseases and poisonous stings can be cured with this herb. It has antioxidant properties and omega fatty acids. It heals scars and marks of the skin. Applying a bit of Khas oil can be used for hair fall treatment. It can remove excessive dryness from hair. The oil can be used as a pest killer also. It can remove stretch marks from the skin. It is also used for preparing sherbet or flavored drinks because of the cooling nature.
 
This herb can relieve any kind of stress. It has a calming effect on the body. It has a very sweet fragrance that helps to reduce stress. 2-3 drops of oil can be used in bathing water once a day to provide relaxation to the body.
 
The roots and vetiver oil are very effective. If the powder is taken 3-6 grams, it is very effective. Aqua cold infusion of 50 ml is very effective. Several ayurvedic products are very effective in curing any disease.
 
● Kumkumadi Thailam oil is used for blood purification and healthy skin.
● Yograj Guggul is used to maintain metabolism, indigestion; it reduces joint aching. It is used in arthritis treatment.
 
PREVENTIVE MEASURES IN EXTERNAL USE
● It is not healthy for babies. So women should avoid taking it during breastfeeding.
● An excessive amount of anything is harmful to our health. There is no proper evidence; still, women should avoid taking it during pregnancy. It may result in miscarriage.
 
MAJOR FORMS OF USAGE
● Khas sherbet is very popular. The juice should be taken 5-6 teaspoons twice a day.
● Khas powder is good if taken ¼- ½ teaspoon twice a day.
● Khas juice can be added to a glass of water and taken before food once or twice a day.
● Ushir churna can be taken for ½-1/4 teaspoon with a bit of honey or water. It should be taken after lunch and dinner.
● Khas powder ½ teaspoon should be mixed with honey or milk. The paste can be used on the affected area once a day. After that, we can wash it with cool water after 1-2 hours.
● Khas essential oil can be used for various skin and relaxation purposes. It provides sound sleep due to its property of Vata balancing.
 
Ushira is cultivated in Pakistan, Sri Lanka, and Malaysia. It is also cultivated in Australia, China, Brazil, Haiti, Indonesia, and Guatemala. It grows in Punjab, Rajasthan, Kerala, Karnataka, Assam, and Madhya Pradesh in our country. Ushira can cure epistaxis and diaphoresis. It also manages acid production, gastric secretion. It also helps to strengthen the stomach and treats anorexia. It can treat brain disorders, improves skin texture. It is used in the treatment of tuberculosis. Vertigo and unconsciousness can be treated with the help of this herb. In ulcer treatment, the herb is very effective in insomnia and anxiety issues. Asthma can be treated with the help of its roots.
 

             ISSUE

     SCIENTIFIC ASPECT

         AYURVEDIC ASPECT

Skin problems

Khas oil balances skin oil gland excretions, thereby managing oily skin and acne. It also moisturizes dry, dehydrated skin and has a replenishing effect on the skin in older people. Khas oil may also soothe cut, inflamed, and irritated skin as a coolant.

Khas oil maintains the skin balance of the skin from its Singdha property; The Ropan, Vranharaand Sita properties are useful for curing skin inflammation or minor cuts.

Hair problems

There is not evident scientific study to support the use of Khas in hair problems.

The Singdha property can help maintain the oil balance in the scalp and cure the dry scalp or dandruff problem. Besides, the Kushtanut property can also help in the presence of lice and other parasitic infections.

Excess sweating

The Khas plant roots have cooling properties that reduce the skin moisture, and its aromatic esters soothe the nerves resulting in a relaxed state and less sweating.

The Ushreesava use of Khas controls excess sweating by controlling the body's need to water from its Trushnahara property.

 
POTENTIAL USAGE OF KHAS OIL IN SKIN TREATMENT:
● Take 5-6 drops of oil
● Then add to a glass of water and boil for some time.
● After that, use the mixed material on the skin.
 
POTENTIAL USE OF KHAS OIL IN HAIR TREATMENT:
● Take 2-5 drops of oil. Apply it on the scalp and retain it for 30 min.
 
POTENTIAL USE OF KHAS OIL IN EXCESSIVE SWEATING:
● Take 1 tablespoon of Khas root powder into 5 cups of water.
● Then boil the mixture for 5 min and consume it daily. Does it cure nerve disease? 
 
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS (FAQ)
Khas essential oil is used to relieve tension. It provides tranquility; it has a calming nature. It can relieve the intense pain of a menstrual cramp. It can remove joint pain as well. It can also help with the headache. A bit of oil can be applied to the muscle area or neck and wrists. It can also be applied to the chest. In this way, it reduces pain.
 
Does it smell good?
It has a very strong, powerful smell. The aroma is specially used in various beauty products. It has a very different smoky aroma used in face wash, shampoo, and different creams. The smell is mainly used for soaps and cosmetics purposes. The flavor is used in beverages.
 
How does it cure a headache?
It has a Vata balancing nature. It can relieve pain from any tensed muscle and thus helps in removing body stress and anxiety. The roots are very effective and traditionally used by some tribes to get rid of a headache. They either extract the root or burn the grasses and after that inhale the smoke to cure headache.
 
Does it help in indigestion?
Yes, it does help with stomach issues and nausea. Some people have a vomiting tendency. The churna is very useful to deal with it. 5-6 teaspoons each day before a meal helps to prevent nausea and indigestion.
 
Does it help with urinary issues?
It does help in urinary infection. It contains tannins, which can fight any bacteria or fungal infection. 5-6 teaspoons of juice should be mixed well with water and be taken before a meal each day. It can reduce the burning sensation during urination.
 
Does it help to cure piles?
The pachan of the herb is very effective. It removes constipation issues and increases appetite. It reduces the pain during the passing of stool. 5-6 teaspoons every day helps to cure piles.
 
Does it help to cure diarrhea?
Khas contains appetizer and digestive properties. So basically, it helps to control diarrhea.
 
What are its advantages in the treatment of fever?
Fever is our body that occurs due to infection or any kind of tissue damage. It usually increases the body temperature and makes one sick. But the roots of this herb are very effective, and it possesses the antipyretic property. It reduces the Ama and balances Pitta in our body. In this way, it helps to reduce the increased body temperature and cure fever.
 
Does it help in curing diabetes?
Khas contains some constituents that possess anti-diabetic property. Ama increases the blood sugar level. This herb balances Ama and helps to reduce diabetic tendencies.
 
Does it good for skin treatment?
Khas has a very cooling nature, and thus it can be used in any affected. Any cut or injury can be healed by applying it. The oil acts as a moisturizer and makes dry skin smoother. It removes wrinkles and scars from the body. It helps elderly skin to glow and gives it natural beauty.
 
Other Properties:
● The herb helps to stop hair loss. Hair loss in our body happens due to Vata and Dosha. It contains Sita and Ropan property. This helps to grow more hair and prevents excessive hair loss. It also helps to remove the dryness from hair.
● It maintains the balance of oil glands and therefore manages the acne and skin.
● It smoothens the injured and inflamed skin. It makes the skin oily. It has a rehydrating nature and dehydrates the skin.
● Chickenpox can be treated with the help of this herb. It has a healing property and helps to grow new tissues; thus, patients quickly recover.
● It can be used as a proper tranquilizer as it relieves stress and provides sound sleep. It calms the nervous system.
● The fragrant oil extracted from the roots is used in the production of strong perfume. And it does not have any kind of side effect.
● It can also prevent any hysteric attack.
● The herb releases muscular pain. 
● The oil is good for bathing and is thus used inexpensive soaps.
 
This herb is commonly known as Khus Khus. It contains chemical constituents such as furfurol, vetiverol, benzoic acid, and vetivene. It is antiseptic. It also acts as a sedative sometimes. Our country is well known for its ayurvedic treatment. Any fatal disease can be cured by using ayurveda. Some magical herbs are essential, and Khas is one of them. It possesses an amazing property and is used for various purposes. Several products and medicines are made up of this herb and available in various shops.
 
This herb is essential by removing joint pain or reducing fever, removing stretch marks, or controlling indigestion. Every day if it is taken in a limited amount before a meal, no disease can harm our body. So, we should be more focused on using it carefully. The grass normally grows rapidly here and there in our country but still far from getting acknowledged by most people. So our biologists should be more cautious and start doing their research on this particular herb as it possesses several beneficial properties that will be useful in future medical science.
consult with ayurveda doctor.
Disclaimer - The aim of the article is just to convey information to you. Use any medicine, therapy, herb or fruit please do it under the guidance of a qualified Ayurveda doctor.
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