Bhringraj is a small and beautiful herb found in many regions of India that has a long history of use in Ayurveda for a variety of purposes. Bhrinraj, literally translated as “The King of Hair” is most well-known for its use in hair oils like Bhringraj hair oil, Neelibhringadi Oil, or Bhringraj Amla Hair oil it also has a host of other applications for ailments of the skin and eyes to the liver and blood. It promotes health and strong hair growth and helps the hair to retain its color and shine. It is revitalizing for Pitta (fire) and is particularly beneficial for the hair and scalp. Bhringraj is a bitter and heating herb that is purifying and toning for the liver and blood and through its effects on the liver has a wide range of benefits for the body as a whole. It supports the health of the nails, bones, teeth, hair, and skin, keeping these tissues strong and promoting a clear complexion. It has a calming effect on the mind and is known to strengthen the memory and the sensory organs. However, it’s most well regarded for its beneficial effects on the liver.

 

The liver is the seat of the metabolic fire, the energy with which we digest our food and our sensory experiences. Check out this article for more on the significance of the digestive fire in Ayurvedic medicine. Both the blood and the digestive tract are given their digestive power via the enzymes produced in the liver. Consequently, ailments of the liver can have a range of secondary effects that one might not immediately associate with the liver. These include lethargy, poor digestion, hair loss, weak eyesight, lack of mental focus and more.

 

Often poor diet and lack of exercise lead to the build-up of toxins which burdens the liver as it attempts to detoxify the body. Overburdening of the liver leads to inflammation and ultimately reduced functioning of the liver which then develops into symptoms described above.

 

Bhringraj has a dual nature as bitter and pungent (spicy). Its bitter (cool) quality helps to cleanse and tone the delicate membranes of the liver while its spicy (hot) quality stimulates and supports the digestive enzymes of the liver, helping to burn away toxins and unburden an overworked liver. In this way it helps restore the liver to its proper and normal functioning.

 

The bitter and pungent nature of Bhringraj is very beneficial for the head, hair, skin and scalp as well. The bitter quality cleanses and reduces inflammation of the skin in conditions such as psoriasis, eczema, and others where redness and itchiness are symptoms. Meanwhile the pungent quality stimulates the local cellular metabolic functions to encourage cell regeneration, healing, and on the scalp, hair growth.

 

It is no accident that Bhringraj is called the king of hair. The unique dual cooling and heating nature of Bhringraj is very beneficial for most all forms of hair loss and premature greying. Hair loss is primarily due to inflammation either locally in the scalp and hair follicles or of the liver. Inflammation of the hair follicles and liver chokes out the subtle passages ways through which the body provides nutrients to the hair for growth. This eventually starves the hair, weakening the root and draining the color, and ultimately leading to hair fall and premature greying. Fortunately, Bhringraj eliminates the toxins which cause inflammation and simultaneously soothes the irritated tissue to calm them and restore them to health. 

Bhringraj can be taken as a powder in bulk or in capsule form depending on the use. As a powder, one may use it for topical applications like skin and hair packs to reduce inflammation or improve hair quality, however, one may also mix it with water and drink it. In capsule form it is perfect for taking internally as is necessary for treating liver conditions.