Home Dravya (Herbs) Part A Guggulu – Commiphora mukul Hook ex.

Guggulu – Commiphora mukul Hook ex.

Guggulu: A king of Gum- resin


Guggulu commonly known as the Indian bdellium tree is a flowering plant with thin papery bark of the Burseraceae family. Botanically Guggul is known as Commiphora mukul and is found from Northern Africa to central Asia. Guggulu is tolerant to poor soil and is mainly found in an arid and semi-arid climate. Guggulu is used for centuries by the Ayurvedic Vaidyas for treating various kinds of disorders. In Ayurvedic classical texts, various information regarding characteristics best quality drug (Prasasta Guggulu), habitat or origin (Udbhava), collection (Sangrahana) purification (Sodhana), contra-indication (Parihara), and other aspects are incorporated.  As per Ayurvedic literature, Guggulu is clarified (to the internal tissues) bitter, astringent and pungent in taste, hot in potency, increases Pitta, and is a mild laxative. It is pungent in post-digestive effect, drying, and is very light in action. It can heal fractured bones, and aphrodisiac, penetrating, improves voice, and is a tissue vitalizer. It is an appetizer, viscid, strength-giving, and cures Kapha, Vata diseases, ulcers, and thyroid swellings. It is used as a fat-burning agent all around the world and is widely used for Medo Roga (obesity). Various varieties of Guggulu are mentioned by different Nighnatus like Bhava Parkasha and Raja Nighantu like Mahisaksa, Mahanila, Kumuda, Padma and Hiranya. The Hiranya variety among them is very beneficial for the human being. Recent research revealed that Guggulu consists of various active ingredients like Z- Guggulsterone, B-Guggulsterone, Guggulsterones I, II, III, IV, & V, Diterpene alcohol, Myrcene, Dimyrcene, etc due to which it exhibits anti-inflammatory, expectorant, antiseptic, astringent, anti-diabetic, anti-allergic activities, etc. Due to its anti-inflammatory activity, it is used to treat various disorders like arthritis, osteo- arthritis, gout, rheumatoid arthritis, etc.

Basonym of Guggulu

गुजे व्याधेर गुडति रक्षतीति |

Guggulu protects the body by curing many diseases.

Synonyms of Guggulu

  • According to habitat

दुर्ग: – दुर्गमस्थाने जातत्वात्‌ |

Guggulu mainly grows in the dry mountain regions.

मरुदेश्य- मरुस्थले जायमान: |

Guggulu plant grows in the dry region.


  • According to morphology

उलूखल- उलूखल सदृश कोटरा निर्गत: |

Gum- resin exudes from the cavities.

कुम्भोलूखलकम्‌- कुम्भसदृशादुलूखलसदूशाद्वा कोशान्निर्गत: |

Gum- The resin of Guggulu exudes from pot-shaped cavities.

कौशिक: – कोशेभव: |

Guggulu exudes gum- resin from its cavities.

महिषाक्ष: – महिषनेत्रवत्‌ रक्ताभकृष्णवर्ण: |

Gum- the resin of Guggulu has a reddish-black color like that of Buffalo’s eyes.

कण निर्यास: – कणरूपो निर्यासो अस्य |

Gum- The resin of Guggulu has particles.

काल निर्यास: – काल: कृष्णाभो निर्यासो अस्य |

Gum- The resin of Guggulu is blackish.


  • According to properties and actions

पुरः- निर्यासेषु श्रेष्ठ: |

Guggulu is regarded as the best among Niryasa (gum- resin).

पलंकष: – पल मांस कषति हिनस्ति, स्थौल्यहदित्यर्थ: |

Guggulu reduces obesity.

रक्षोहा- रक्षांसि हन्तीति, तदर्थ धूपने प्रयुक्त: |

Guggulu is very good anti-microbial hence used for fumigation.

देवधुप: – देवपूजायां धूपे प्रयुक्त: |

Guggulu is also used in incense sticks to worship.

Regional names of Guggulu

  • Indian bdellium (English)
  • Gugal (Hindi)
  • Guggula, Kanthagana (Kannada)
  • Guggulu (Malayalam)
  • Gugula (Marathi)
  • Guggilam (Telugu)

Scientific classification of Guggulu

Kingdom Plantae
Class Dicotyledons
Subclass Polypetalae 
Series  Disciflorae
Order Geraniales
Family  Burseraceae
Genus Commiphora
Species  mukul

Botanical Name

Commiphora mukul Hook ex. Stocks/ Balsamodendron mukul, Hook.

Commiphora – Phora means bearer, and mukul is an Arabic name.

Family – Burseraceae (Guggulu Kula)

Ayurveda reference for Guggulu (Commiphora mukul Hook ex.)

Classification of Guggulu as per Charaka and Sushruta

  • Charaka: Sangya Sthapana Mahakshaya.
  • Sushruta: Eladi Gana

Guggulu's description in Brihtrayi

Five varieties of Guggulu have been mentioned by Bhava Mishra. It is an oleo-gum resin obtained from the bark of the Guggulu shrubs and is differentiated into different varieties according to its color, consistency, place of origin, etc.


Charaka  Shusruta  Vagbhata 

(Ashtang Hridya)

C. S. Su. 3/ 3 S. S. Su. 5/ 18 A. H. Su. 14/ 23
C. S. Su. 5/ 18 S. S. Su. 15/ 38 A. H. Su. 15/ 43
C. S. Sa. 8/ 93 S. S. Su. 38/ 23 A. H. Su. 16/ 34, 44
C. S. Chi. 1- 3/ 58 S. S. Su. 42/ 18 A. H. Su. 21/ 13
C. S. Chi. 13/ 151 S. S. Chi. 5/ 35, 40, 45 A. H. Su. 29/ 25
C. S. Chi. 17/ 79 S. S. Chi. 7/ 14 A. H. Chi. 4/ 13, 14
C. S. Chi. 23/ 99, 230 S. S. Chi. 9/ 6 A. H. Chi. 11/ 25
C. S. Chi. 25/ 52, 99 S. S. Chi. 16/ 32 A. H. Chi. 13/ 25
C. S. Chi. 26/ 151, 181 S. S. Chi. 22/ 5, 69 A. H. Chi. 14/ 99
C. S. Chi. 27/ 34 S. S. Chi. 23/ 15 A. H. Chi. 15/ 41
C. S. Chi. 28/ 239 S. S. Chi. 40/ 4 A. H. Chi. 17/ 4
C. S. Chi. 29/ 158 S. S. Ka. 5/ 66 A. H. Chi. 19/ 71, 81
C. S. Chi. 30/ 119 S. S. Ka. 6/ 22 A. H. Chi. 21/ 49, 50, 60
C. S. Ka. 1/ 26 S. S. Ka. 8/ 137 A. H. Chi. 22/ 65
S. S. U. 21/ 11, 53 A. H. U. 5/ 34
S. S. U. 42/ 63 A. H. U. 22/ 3
S. S. U. 51/ 51 A. H. U. 25/ 37
A. H. U. 28/ 38, 39, 40
A. H. U. 40/ 48, 56

Guggulu's description in Brihtrayi as Jatukanda

Some authors suggest a change in the version and read Jatukanda instead of Jatikanda and describe it as something called Gugguluka in Uttarapatha. If this is correct, it may be Jurinea macrocephala Benth., known as Guggalagie in Garhwal (U. P.). Dalhana, however, accepts the version of Jatikanda and explains it as the root of Jati.


Sushruta Samhita: S. S. Su. 36/ 16, 17

Guggulu's description in Brihtrayi as Aamish

Sushruta Samhita: S. S. Chi. 37/ 15, S. S. U. 51/ 49

Guggulu's description in Brihtrayi as Palankasasa

It has been identified variously with Guggulu, Gokura, and Laksa (lac) but Guggulu appears to be more appropriate. In C. S. Sa. 8.93 where both Guggulu and Palankasha have been used in the same context, two varieties of Guggulu have been suggested to be accepted.


Charaka  Shusruta  Vagbhata 

(Ashtang Hridya)

C. S. Su. 4/ 48 S. S. U. 31/ 4 A. H. Chi. 1/ 162
C. S. Sa. 8/ 93 S. S. U. 39/ 257 A. H. U. 6/ 35
C. S. Chi. 3/ 266 S. S. U. 55/ 45
C. S. Chi. 8/ 77 S. S. U. 61/ 27
C. S. Chi. 9/ 52
C. S. Chi. 10/ 25, 32

Guggulu's description in Brihtrayi as Purahvaya

Purahavya has been used for Shallaki as well. Like Khapur, Pura or Purahavya may have been used for gum resins in general or a particular variety such as those of Guggulu or Shallaki.


Charaka Samhita: C. S. Vi. 8/ 151, C. S. Chi. 3/ 266


Sushruta Samhita: S. S. Ka. 5/ 69, S. S. U. 39/ 188, S. S. U. 52/ 23


Vagbhata: A. H. Chi. 1/ 138, 163, A. H. Chi. 8/ 146, A. H. Chi. 17/ 40, A. H. Chi. 19/ 84, A. H. U. 5/ 33, A. H. U. 25/ 49

Guggulu's description in Brihtrayi as Mahisaksha

Vagbhata: A. H. U. 28/ 42

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Historical background of Guggulu

In Ancient times Guggulu is described as Agni Sthana and used for Dhupa. In Atharva Veda, it is mentioned that if the area is fumigated by Guggulu then Yaksma and other diseases will not spread to that particular area. Sayana also introduced it as a well-known Dhupana Dravya. It was used for the treatment of diseases in cattle. It is observed that the internal usage of Guggulu increased during the Samhita period only. Susruta documented that the new Guggulu is Vrsya while the old Guggulu is Apakarsana. Charaka and Vagbhata have delineated Guggulu as Medohara and Vatahara (C. S. Su. 25 & A. Sa. Su.). Sarngdhara quoted it among the drugs to be used when they are older (Purana). G. V. Satyathi while working on hypolipidemic activity observed that Purana Guggulu means “five years old” as advised by C. Dwarakanath. In the ancient texts, the storage time for Niryasa (gums) is mentioned as five years. Probably this is the method for  finding the difference between old and new Guggulu. Vriddhi Vagbhata described that about 1 Tula (100 Palas) of Guggulu may be consumed for Rasayana purposes. If administered in excessive quantities side effects like Timira (lenticular opacities/cataract), Klaibya (impotency), Krisatva (weight loss), Murcha (syncope), Southilya (laxity of tissues), Rouksya (xerosis/ sclerosis) may develop. Traditionally Guggulu is purified in Triphala Kvatha for 3 hours (in Dola Yantra) and then fried with ghee before being administered internally. According to Nighantu Ratnakara decoctions of Guduchi, Triphala, and cow’s milk are to be used for purification. Bhavamisra contraindicated sour substances, corrosives, and items which may lead to indigestion, sex/ coitus, exertion, alcohol, etc. while using Guggulu.

Varieties of Guggulu

  • As per Bhava Prakasha Nighantu Karpuradi Varga- 34- 37

Types of Guggulu are as follows: 


महिषाक्षो महानील: कुमुद: पद्म इत्यपि |

हिरण्यः पश्चमों ज्ञयो गुग्गुलो: पंञ्च जातय: ||

भृङ्गाञ्जननसवर्णस्त्रु महिषाक्ष इति स्मृत्त: |

महानीलस्तु विज्ञेय: स्वानामसमलक्षण: ||

कुमुदः कुमुदाभ: स्यात्पद्यों माणिक्य सन्निभ: | 

हिरण्याख्यस्तु हेमाभ:  पश्चानां लिंगमीरितम्‌ ||

महिषाक्षो महीनीलो गजेन्द्रणां हितातुभौ |

हयानां कुमुद: पद्म स्वस्थ्यारोग्यकरी परौ |

विशेषेण मनुष्याणां कनक: परिकीर्तित: |

कदाचिन्महिषाक्षश्च मत: कैश्चिनृणामपि ||


Mahisaksa, Mahanila, Kumuda, Padma and Hiranya are the five types of Guggulu. The variety of Guggulu, having the color of a large black bee or black lead stone is called Mahisaksa. Mahanila looks like sapphire, a precious stone. Kumuda looks like a Nymph. Padma looks like a ruby. The Hiranya variety shines like gold out of them, Mahisaksa and Mahanila are highly useful to elephants. Kumuda and Padma varieties are useful for horses. Hiranya type is beneficial to human beings. Some scholars opine that now and then Mahisaksa is useful for humans also.


Bhava Mishra also mentioned Guggulu varieties as follows:

  • Nava Guggulu
  • Purana Guggulu


Raja Nighantu mentioned two varieties of Guggulu as follows:

  • Gandharaja Guggulu/ Kana Guggulu
  • Bhumija Guggulu


Commercial varieties of Guggulu are as follows:

  • Grade I: Consists of translucent Guggulu free from bark and sand.
  • Grade II: Dull-coloured Guggulu mixed with bark and sand.
  • Grade III: Most inferior quality, collected from the ground and mixed with a lot of extraneous matters.

The raw drug Guggulu has classically been grouped in five forms or categories based on color and other characters like Jati, Varna, etc.


Jati (kind) Varna (color) Specific indication (utility)
Mahisaksha Krishna Human
Mahanila Nila Veterinary 
Kumuda Kapisa  Veterinary
Padma Rakta Veterinary
Kanaka Pitta Human


Practically there are two types of Guggulu viz. Kana Guggulu and Bhainsa Guggulu. In Unani medicine, several varieties of Mukelul or Jahudan (Gugal) are based on color, material, and regional factors, such as Mukle Arjak, Mukla Yahud, Mukle Saklabi, Mukle Hindi, and Mukle Arabi.

External morphology of Commiphora mukul

  • Habit- Shrubby, 4 to 6 ft. high. Young parts of Guggulu plant are glandular pubescent. The branches of Guggulu are  knotty and crooked, divaricate, usually ending in a sharp spine (Kantaki).
  • Leaves- 1 to 3 foliate, leaflets subsessile, the terminal leaflet is large, 2 cm long and 1 cm wide, rhomboid, or ovate shaped, serrate, toothed in the upper part, smooth, shining. The lateral leaflets of the Guggulu when present are less than half the size of the terminal leaflets.
  • Flowers- Flowers of Guggulu are seen in fascicles of 2- 3 with very short pedicels. The calyx is campanulate, glandular, and hairy. Petals are brownish red, broadly linear, nearly thrice the length of the calyx, and reflexed at the apex. Stamens in the flower of Guggulu are  8 to 10 in number, alternately long and short, half the length of the petals. The ovary is oblong- ovoid.
  • Fruit- Fruit of Guggulu is drupe, when ripe becomes red, 6- 8 mm in diameter, ovoid, epicarp is 4- valved.
  • Seeds- Small, Nuts, Ovoid, Splitting into two.
  • Flowering and Fruiting time- Post- rains to the autumn season.

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The useful part of Guggulu

Gum resin


Market sample of gum resin is translucent vermicular or stalactite tears of varying sizes, reddish yellow or brown, more often occurring in resinous lumps which turn darker in color on long storage. Gum resin on breaking becomes pieces with a rough waxy surface having a moist unctuous appearance. Having a balsamic aromatic odor with a bitter taste.

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Important phytoconstituent of Guggulu

Gum resin of Guggulu contains steroidal constituents like Z- Guggulsterone, B-Guggulsterone, Guggulsterones I, II, III, IV, & V, Diterpene alcohol, Myrcene, Dimyrcene, Polymyrcene, Myrieyl alcohol, B-sitosterol, 15 amino acids like Cystine, Histidine, Lysine, Arginine, Aspartic acid, Serine, Glutamic acid, Threonine, Alanine, Proline, Tyrosine, Tryptophan, Valine, Leucine, and Isoleucine.

Recent research on Commiphora mukul

  • The present study was undertaken to evaluate the effect of ethanol extract of Commiphora mukul gum resin (CMEE) on blood glucose, plasma insulin, lipid profiles, reduced glutathione, lipid peroxidation, protein oxidation, and enzymatic antioxidants like superoxide dismutase, catalase, glutathione reductase, glutathione peroxidase, glutathione-S-transferase in fructose-induced type- 2 diabetic rats. CMEE can improve insulin sensitivity and delay the development of insulin resistance, aggravate antioxidant status in diabetic rats, and may be used as adjuvant therapy for patients with insulin resistance. Ramesh B, Sarala Kumari D Antihyperglycemic, hypolipidemic and antioxidant activities of ethanolic extract of Commiphora mukul gum resin in fructose-fed male Wistar rats. J Physiol Biochem. 2012 May 13.
  • A present study was undertaken to evaluate the cardioprotective potential of Commiphora mukul against isoprenaline-induced myocardial necrosis in rats. It is concluded that Commiphora mukul may be a potential preventive and therapeutic agent against the oxidative stress associated with ischemic heart disease owing to antioxidant and antiperoxidative activity. Ojha S, Bhatia J, Arora S, Golechha M, Kumari S, Arya DS. Card bioprotective effects of Commiphora mukul against isoprenaline induced cardiotoxicity: a biochemical and histo-pathological evaluation. J Environ Biol. 2011 Nov; 32 (6): 731- 8.
  • Oleo gum resin extracted by incision of the bark is a very complex mixture of gum, minerals, essential oils, terpenes, sterols, ferrules, flavanones, and sterones. Its active constituents, the Z- and E- guggulsterones, have been demonstrated to exhibit their biological activities by binding to nuclear receptors and modulating the expression of proteins involved in carcinogenic activities, Shah R, Gulati V, Palombo EA. Pharmacological properties of guggulsterone, the major active component of gum guggul. Phytother Res. 2012 Nov; 26 (11): 1594. 605. doi: 10. 1002 Apr. 4647. Epub 2012 Mar 3.
  • High-fat diet-induced diabetic rodent models resembling type 11 diabetic conditions in the human population were used to assess the anti-diabetic and hypolipidemic activity of guggulsterone (isolated from Commiphora mukul resin). The results presented here suggest that guggulsterone has both hypoglycemic and hypolipidemic effects which can help to cure type I diabetes. Sharma B, Salunke R, Srivastava S, Majumder C, Roy P. Effects of guggulsterone isolated from Commiphora mukul in high-fat diet-induced diabetic rats. Food Chemistry toxicology. 2009 Oct; 47 (10): 2631- 9. Epub 2009 Jul 25.
  • In the present study effects of the combination of XN + G5 were investigated. A combination of XN and G5 is more patent in exerting anti-obesity effects than additive effects of the individual compounds. Rayalam S, Yang JY, Deila- Fera MA, Park HJ, Ambati S, Baile CA. Anti-obesity effects of xanthohumol plus guggulsterone in 3T3-L1 adipocytes. J Med Food. 2009 Aug; 12 (4): 846- 53. 


Anti-inflammatory and anti-arthritic activity- 


  • Oleoresin was found to be a highly potent anti-inflammatory agent, as compared to hydrocortisone and butazolidin against Brownlee’s formaldehyde-induced arthritis in albino rats (Gujral et al; 1960)
  • The oleoresin fraction possessed significant anti-arthritic and anti-inflammatory activities, the minimum effective dose being 12.5mg/ 100g body weight (Santakumari et al; 1964).
  • The crude aqueous extract of oleo-gum-resin was found to suppress acute rat-paw edema induced by carrageenan. In adjuvant arthritis, the extract suppressed the secondary lesions and is compared to be more effective than betamethasone. (Satyavathi et al; 1969a).
  • The steroidal compound isolated from PE extract possessed significant anti-inflammatory activity on carrageenin-induced rat-paw edema (Arora et al; 1971, 1972). The anti-inflammatory properties of Guggulu are reviewed (Sharma J.M., 1961, G.A.U, Jamnagar). 
  • Clinical study on the effect of Shuddha Guggulu in Amavata (RA) is reported to be encouraging (Vyas S.N., G.A.U., Jamnagar, 1983); hope A.B. 1978 & Majumdar, 1979). Suddha Guggulu is found to be effective in Katisula (low back pain) proving the analgesic & anti-inflammatory effect (Pandey D.H, 1993 GAU, Jamnagar).


Antifertility activity-


Oleoresin of gum Guggulu is found to cause also a reduction in the weight of the uterus, ovaries, and cervix with a concomitant increase in their glycogen and sialic acid levels, thereby showing that it might be useful as an antifertility agent (Amma M.K.P et al; 1978).


Anti-atherosclerotic activity– 


  • The effect of gum Guggulu was observed on serum cholesterol, fibrinolytic activity, and platelet adhesive index in healthy individuals (group I) and in patients with CAD (group II) for 30 days. Serum fibrinolytic activity improved by 22% and 19% at the end of 24 hrs, whereas after 30 days it was 40% and 30% in groups I & II respectively. Platelet adhesive index showed 22% and 19% after 30 days in groups I and II respectively. Serum cholesterol did not decrease significantly (Bordia & Chuttani, 1979).
  • Purified steroidal fractions of Guggulu show a marked inhibition of ADP, adrenaline, and serotonin-induced platelet aggregation. Their inhibitory effect is comparable to the effect of “clofibrate”. The finding has its therapeutic value in myocardial infarction and thromboembolism. The effect of Guggulu on coagulation and fibrinolysis in experimental atherosclerosis is reviewed (Kaur et al; 1980).
  • The effect of C. mukul on fibrinolytic activity and platelet aggregation was studied in 42 IHD patients. It was observed that patients with MI were found to have low fibrinolytic activity as compared to cases of angina pectoris, acute coronary insufficiency, and asymptomatic coronary disease but no such difference was observed for platelet aggregation. Administration of Guggulu improved fibrinolytic activity in IHD (Baldwin et al; 1980).


Anti-obesity activity-


  • Crude Guggulu was found to reduce the body weight of hydrogenated ground-nut oil-treated rabbits (Satyavati et al; 1969 b).
  • Preliminary clinical trials on 22 patients of hypercholesterolemia associated with obesity, IHD, HTN, DM, etc. Guggulu(crude) was administered orally (6.12 mg in 3 divided doses for 15 days to one month. A fall in total serum cholesterol and serum lipid-phosphorus was found in all the cases treated with Guggulu. The body weight of 10 patients with obesity was also found to be reduced significantly (Satyavati, 1966; Dwarakanath & Satyavati, 1970).
  • In another study 75 patients (both sex and of different age groups) having varied etiology and clinical manifestations of obesity and lipid disorders were treated with crude Guggulu and PR extract (16 gm. in four divided doses per day for three months). On average there is a 2 kg reduction in one month in both the groups (Pandey et al; 1989)


Hypolipidemic/ hypocholesterolemic activity- 


  • Crude Guggulu was reported to possess highly encouraging hypolipidemic activity in rabbits (Satyavati, 1966).
  • Anion exchange property was detected using chloride retention and bile acid sequestering activity in the oleoresin fraction hypocholesterolemic activity (Satyavati et al; 1969).
  • Crude drugs as well as their two fractions (alcohol soluble and alcohol-insoluble) were found to cause a significant fall in serum cholesterol and serum turbidity with a concomitant increase in the coagulation time and prothrombin time. The alcohol-insoluble fraction was slightly more potent in this respect than the alcohol-soluble fraction as well as crude Guggulu (Sastri, 1967; Tripathi et al; 1968).
  • PE fractions A (petrol-soluble), B (alkali washed neutral portion), and C (Petrol-insoluble) were given to 8-week-old male white leghorn chicks for 2-3 weeks in hypercholesterolemia induced by an atherogenic diet. All fractions lower the serum cholesterol, but fraction A is the most potent, and B is the least potent (Mehta et al; 1968; Mehta & Malhotra, 1970).
  • Alcohol extract and two pure fractions (a terpenoid and a steroid) isolated from the PE extract showed that the steroid fraction was highly potent as a hypolipidemic agent lowering the serum cholesterol by 69.3% as well as the c/p ratio. The alcohol extract could lower the cholesterol by 59.2% whereas the terpenoid lowered it by 54.3% (Malhotra et al; 1970).
  • The alcohol extract effectively reduced the serum beta-lipoprotein fraction and significantly altered the lipoprotein ratio (Khama et al; 1969).
  • The steroidal compound isolated from fraction A of PE extract reduced the lipid content (Viz., Total lipids, cholesterol, TG, and phospholipids) of both hepatic and aortic tissues. The response was dose-dependent and the maximum effect was noted at 10 mg/kg (Malhotra & Ahuja, 1972).
  • Fraction A of PE extract effectively lowered serum lipids, cholesterol, phospholipids, and triglycerides in monkeys fed with a cholesterol diet (Das et al., 1973).
  • Alcoholic extract (25-50 mg/kg orally), reduced serum cholesterol levels in normal and hyperlipidemic rats and rabbits. Further, a resin fraction, a pure steroid, and fraction F isolated from crude extract showed hypercholesterolemia effect on normal and triton-induced hyperlipidemic rats (Kapoor and Nityanand, 1971; Nityanand & Kapoor, 1971). Other studies include (Nityanand et al: 1973; Dwarakanath & satyavathi, 1970; Malhotra & Ahuja 1971; Malhotra 193; Kuppurajan, 1978; Kotiyal J.P et al; 1979; Nityanand et al; 1980 etc.

Rasa Panchaka of Guggulu

Rasa (Taste) Tikta (bitter), Katu (pungent), Madhura (sweet), Kashaya (astringent)
Guna (Virtue) Theekshana (sharp), Sara (mobile), Sukshma (micro), Snigdha (oily), Laghu (light), Vishada
Virya (potency) Ushna (hot potency)
Vipaka (post-digestion) Katu (pungent)

Dosha Karma of Guggulu

Tridosasamaka, Vatasamaka due to Ushna Virya. Pittahara due to Tikta Madhur, Kasaya Rasa and Kaphahara because of Ushna virya, Katu vipaka and Tikta Katu Kasaya Rasa. Because of Madhura rasa Vatahara, Kasaya Rasa Pittahara & Tikta rasa Kaphara.

Karma (Actions) of Guggulu

Medohara, Amavatahara, Pramehahara, Bhagna, Sandhanakara, Vrsya, Swarya, Rasayana, Dipana, Balya, Vrnahara, Kusthaghna, Sophahara, Arsoghna, Krmihara, Varnya, Brhmana.


Nava Guggulu Karma (Actions of fresh Guggulu)

Brahmana, Vrsya


Properties and action of Navaka Guggulu and Purana Guggulu


Guggulu older than 5 years is considered as Purana Guggulu.


स नवो बृहणो वृष्य: पुराणस्त्वति लेखन: |

स्निग्ध: कांचनसंकाश: पक्व जम्बूफलोपम: ||

नूतनो गुग्गुलुः प्रोक्तः सुगन्धि यस्तु पिच्छिल: ||

शुष्को दुर्गंधकश्चैव त्यक्त प्रकृति वर्णक: | 

पुराण: स तु विज्ञेयो गुगगुलु वीर्य वर्जितः |


The freshly collected Guggulu is a tissue builder and aphrodisiac and if stored for more than one year, it is depletory of tissues. The characteristics of a fresh one are that it is oily, yellowish and looks like a ripened Jambul fruit, fragrant and gummy. Purana or old decayed Guggulu is a dry emitting bad smell, devoid of natural color and potency.


Navaka Guggulu (fresh) Purana Guggulu (old)
Varna (color) Bright yellow (Kanchana) or dark brown (Pakwa Jambu Phala) Yellowish brown (Tyakta Prakriti Varna)
Gandha (odor) Sugandhit (pleasant) Durgandhit (offensive)
Guna (qualities) Snigdha, Picchila Sushaka
Karma (action) Brihana (Vrishya) Lekhana

Properties and actions of different types of Guggulu

  • Gandharaja (Kana) Guggulu- Katu rasa, Ushna Virya. Sulahara, Rasayana, Vatahara.
  • Bhumija guggulu- Tikta katu rasa, Usna virya, Vatahara, Medhya.

Prayogarha Vyadhi (Therapeutic indication) of Guggulu

Vata vyadhi, Tvagvikara, Kandu, Galaroga, Hrdroga, Vatarakta, Sandhivata, Grdhrasi, Krostukasirsa, Urustambha, Ardita- paksaghata, Nadisula, Yonivyapat, Sukravikara, Klaibya, Amlapitta, Bhagandara, Vrana, Nadi Vrana, Kugtha, Sotha, Medorogam, Sthoulya, Kasa, Shvasa, Udararoga, Adhmana, Karnaroga, Arsha, Yakrdroga, Kshya, Rajahkrechra, Mutrakrechra, Asmari, Krimi, Gulma Prameha, Apachi.

Aamyik Paryog (Therapeutic uses) of Guggulu

Medo Roga (Obesity)


  • In obesity, the use of Rasanjana, Brhat Pancamula, Guggulu, Silajatu, and Agnimantha is beneficial. (Ashtanga Hridya Sutra Sthana. 14. 23)
  • In case obesity has set in, one should use regularly Silajatu, Guggulu, cow’s urine, Triphala, Lauha- Bhasma, Rasanjana, honey, barley, Mudga, Kodrava, Syamaka, Vanakodrava, etc. which are rough and reduce fat. (Sushruta Samhita Sutra Sthana. 15/ 32)


Udara Roga (Stomach disorders)


  • One should use Guggulu as Shilajatu is used. (Charaka Samhita Chikitsa Sthana. 13/ 153)
  • The use of Shilajatu, urines, Guggulu, Triphala, and Snuhi latex alleviates Udara Roga. (Vrinda Madhava. 37. 9)


Shotha (Oedema)


  • One should use Guggulu with GoMutra (cow- urine) or Punarnava Kwatha (decoction of Punarnava). (Sushruta Samhita Chikitsa Sthana. 23. 12)
  • Guggulu or Haritaki should be used with cow- urine. (Ashtanga Hridya Chikitsa Sthana. 19/ 3)
  • Guggulu alone taken with urine or decoction of Punarnava, Devadaru, Haritaki, and Guduci alleviates edema, anemia, Udara Roga, and obesity. (Chakra Dutta. 311)
  • Guggulu is useful with urine in edema, with Khadira decoction in Kustha, and with a decoction of Brihat Pancamula or Agnimantha in obesity. (Chakra Dutta. 312)
  • Guggulu destroys edema taken with a decoction of Punarnava, Devadaru, and Sunthi or urine or Dasamula decoction. (Vrinda Madhava. 39. 8)
  • Those suffering from edema should use Guggulu with urine or Pippali with milk or Haritaki or Sunthi mixed with jaggery. (Vrinda Madhava. 39. 11)


Vatavyadhi (Vataja disorder)


  • Use of all Rasayanas particularly Silajatu and Guggulu with milk is beneficial. (Charaka Samhita Chikitsa Sthana. 28. 241)
  • Guggulu is the best remedy for Vata covered by Medas. (Ashtanga Hridya Uttara Tantra. 40/ 48)


Gridarsi (Sciatica): Rasna 40 gm and Guggulu 200 gm are pounded with Ghee and made into pills. It alleviates sciatica. (Chakra Dutta. 22. 50)


Krostusirsa (arthritis of knee joint): In Krostusirsa, Guggulu or Guduci with Triphala decoction or castor oil or Vriddh Daruka with milk should be taken. (Vrinda Madhava. 22. 47, Vanga Sena Vatavyadhi, 137, Bhava Parkasha Chikitsa. 24. 156)


Urustambha (stiffness of thigh)


  • Guggulu with urine is a good remedy for Urustambha. (Sushruta Samhita Chikitsa Sthana. 5. 35)
  • In Urustambha, one should take Silajatu or Guggulu or Pippali or Sunthi with urine or decoction of Dasamula. (Vrinda Madhava. 24. 8)


Amavata (Rheumatoid arthritis)


  • One should regularly use Haritaki, Guggulu, and Shilajatu with urine. (Ashtanga Hridya Chikitsa Sthana. 21. 48)
  • Intake of Guggulu with an equal quantity of Trikatu, Citraka, Musta, Triphala, and Vidanga destroys all disorders caused by Medas, Kapha, and Amavata. (Ashtanga Hridya Chikitsa Sthana. 21. 49)


Vatarakta (Gout)


  • The diseases can be controlled by regular use of Shilajatu, Guggulu, and honey. (Charaka Samhita Chikitsa Sthana. 29. 159)
  • Use of all Rasayanas particularly of Shilajatu and Guggulu with milk is beneficial. (Ashtanga Hridya Chikitsa Sthana. 22/ 65)


An abscess (Vidriddhi)


  • The patient should use Silajatu, Guggulu, Sunthi, and Devadaru with a decoction of the group of drugs according to (predominance of) Dosha. (Sushruta Samhita Chikitsa Sthana. 16. 32)
  • In all types and conditions of abscess, Guggulu should be used with suitable decoctions (according to Dosha). Similarly, Shilajatu should also be used. (Ashtanga Hridya Chikitsa Sthana. 13/ 25)
  • In Vidriddhi (abscess) caused by Vata, Guggulu or Erand Taila (castor oil) should be taken. (Vrinda Madhava. 43. 4)
  • Similarly, in that caused by Kapha, Guggulu should be taken with urine. (Chakra Dutta. 43. 11)


Vrna (Wound): Guggulu should be used with Triphala decoction in wounds, skin diseases, sinus, and fistula-in ano. The same with Kancanara, Triphala, and Pippali is useful in Gandamala and Galaganda. (Chakra Dutta. 313, Gada Nigreha. 4. 3. 73- 74)


Bhagandar (Fistula-in-ano)


  • Intake of Guggulu and Vidanga mixed with Triphala and Khadira decoction destroys fistula-in-ano. (Gada Nigreha. 4. 7. 27)
  • Navakarsika Guggulu. (Gada Nigreha. 4. 7. 25)


Vrishan Vriddhi (Scrotal enlargement): One should take Guggulu or castor oil with cow urine. This chronic scrotal enlargement caused by Vata is destroyed. (Vrinda Madhava. 40. 1)


Puti Karna (Foetid ear): Fumigation with Guggulu is a good remedy. (Sushruta Samhita Uttara Tantra. 21. 53, Vrinda Madhava. 59. 46)


Shvasa (Bronchial asthma): Shallaki, Guggulu, Aguru, and  Padmaka mixed with ample ghee are used for fumigation. (Ashtanga Hridya Chikitsa Sthana. 4. 14)


Amlapitta (Gastritis): Use of Guggulu with a decoction of Vasa, Nimba, Patola, Triphala, and Guduci controls Amlapitta having a predominance of Kapha. (Gada Nigreha. 2. 38. 2)

Benefits of Guggulu

  • It is alternative, antiseptic, aperient, aphrodisiac, carminative, detergent, demulcent, disinfectant, emmenagogue, expectorant, enricher of the blood, and stimulant. It is used in amenorrhea, worms’ affection, cough, dyspepsia, epilepsy, fever, hair falling, purulent ophthalmia, ulcer and sores, and uterine affections.
  • The gum-resin is a very potent drug for rheumatoid arthritis, gout, and other joint troubles; it is a prominent herbal drug commonly prescribed in the treatment of rheumatic complaints and allied diseases.
  • It is a powerful hypercholesterolemia drug. It has promising anti-heart trouble. The drug in doses of 15 to 25 grains may check sclerosis, coronary thrombosis, and coronary artery troubles. Its action to reduce cholesterol includes activity on lipid metabolism, obesity and atherosclerosis. It is recommended as an anti-cholesterol herbal drug.
  • The crude gum resin is used in medicine after purification through the classical method (Guggulu Sodhana Vidhi) usually in cow-urine (Gomutra Svedana). Externally the gum-resin is applied to arthritis, rheumatism, goiter, glandular affections, dermatosis, piles, and other similar ailments.
  • The drug is an oleo-gum-resin which is an exudate of the stem/ trunk of the plant when injured or incised. It is moist, viscid, fragrant, and golden in color and also different colors; it burns in the fire, melts in the sun, and forms a milky emulsion with hot water. 
  • The gum-resin consists of irregular roundish masses, varying in size from small grains up to pieces as large as an egg, opaque reddish-brown, with the dusty, dull surface, when broken exposes a rough or waxy fracture, having a moist unctuous appearance. It gives agreeable fragrans, an acrid taste with bitterness.

Benefits of Guggulu on different systems of bodies

  • External uses: Anti-inflammatory, analgesic, cleaning of wound and healing due to antibacterial action. Paste of guggul is locally applied in rheumatoid arthritis, cervical lymphadenitis, skin diseases, piles, etc. It reduces the foul smell and swelling of the wound. Its vapors are useful as deodorant and disinfectant in the house. Gargling is useful in pyorrhea and dental disorders.
  • Nervous system: Vata Shamaka, analgesic, nervine tonic, so guggulu is useful in neuralgia, rheumatoid arthritis, sciatica, facial paralysis, hemiplegia, gout, etc. It is a well-known and popular medicine for Vata disorders. Triphala and Guggul is a popular medicine given internally in wounds.
  • Digestive system: It is an appetizer by pungent and bitterness; laxative by Snigdha, Pichchila, Sara, and Tikshna; liver stimulant, anti- hemorrhoidal and anthelmintic by bitter and Ushna Gunas. Hence Guggul is useful in loss of appetite, constipation, liver diseases, piles, and worms. In stomatitis Guggul kept in the mouth helps in wound healing.
  • Circulatory system: It is a cardiac tonic. It increases hemoglobin and leukocyte count and enhances blood quality. It helps in edema, lymphadenitis, glandular enlargements, and filaria when given for a longer period.
  • Respiratory system: Expectorant being Snigdha and Pichchila. It is deodorant, and anthelmintic. Useful in chronic cough and chronic asthma. Preparation of Guggul, Pippali, honey, and ghee is useful in Kapha disorders.
  • Urinary system: Lithotripsic due to Tikshna and diuretic properties. Also useful in dysuria and gonorrhea.
  • Reproductive system: Guggul is Ushna (hot in potency), Tikshna (sharp), and Vaajikaran (increases sexual power and acts as an emmenagogue. It is also useful in Oligospermia, impotency, dysmenorrhea, leucorrhea, and other gynecological diseases. Due to Snigdha and Pichchila’s properties, it acts as an aphrodisiac and anti- infertility.
  • Satmikaran: Guggul works on all tissues of the body and is effective in rejuvenating body tissues and increasing strength. Fresh guggulu is useful in Dourbalya (weakness) and Karshya (loss of weight), but on becoming old, is useful in Prameha (diabetes) and Medo Roga (obesity). It is also a good Rasayana in obesity and diseases of Vata, Kapha. It also helps in the digestion of oil and ghee.
  • Skin: Effective in dermatoses, enhances complexion, and is useful in many skin diseases.
  • Temperature: Sheeta Prashamak by Ushna property, its vapors are useful in typhoid.

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Matra (Therapeutic administration and dosage) of Guggulu

  • Niryasa (Gum resin)- 0.5 – 3 grams


Guggulu Shodhana (Purification of Guggulu)


Physical impurities like a sand, stone, leaf, etc. are first removed from crude drugs, and crushed into small pieces. Then taken in a Pottali and boiled in liquids and one among Gomutra (Cow’s urine), Triphala Kwatha, Vasa Patra Swarasa, Vasa Patra Kasaya, Nirgundi Patra Swarasa, or Godugdha (Milk). Swedana (Boiling) is carried out till all pass into the Dravya (fluid) through cloth. The residue left in the Pottali is to be discarded. The fluid is filtered and boiled till it forms a mass. This mass is dried under the sun and pounded with a pestle in a stone mortar, adding a little quantity of ghee till it becomes waxy.


Prashasta Guggulu (Qualities of Genuine Guggulu)


  • Atapaiste Viliyanti becomes liquified when exposed to sunlight.
  • Ksiptagnou Jwalanti- Burns well when put on fire.
  • Should be Snigdha, Mridu (Soft), Picchila, Sugandha (Good smell), and Pitabha (Yellowish tinged).
  • Mrt Sikata Rahita (Devoid of mud and sand).


Atimatra Prayoga (Excessive usage) of Guggulu


Without precaution, if Guggulu is used in excess it may lead to-

  • Klaivya (Impotency)
  • Asya Sosa (Dryness in mouth)
  • Timira (Progressive cataract)
  • Karsya (Lean)
  • Moha (Giddiness)
  • Atisara (Diarrhea)


Adulteration of Guggulu


The main adulterants of Guggulu available in the Market were the gums of plants such as-

  • Albizia lebbeck
  • Acacia Senegal
  • Acacia arabica
  • Boswellia serrata
  • Moringa oleifera

Guggulu is listed among endangered plants.


Collection of Guggulu


Schizogenous ducts in the bark become enlarged by breaking down the surrounding cells to form large ligneous cavities in which a granular oleo- gum resin collects. When the bark is wounded, the secretion exudes and changes in the air from a yellowish-white fluid to a reddish-brown hard mass. The greater part of the gum resin exudes spontaneously through natural fissures.


Tapping of Guggulu


The best tapping period for gum resin has been recognized from the middle of December to the end of February. The plants in the 7 years age group are suitable for tapping the gum resin. The contractors are to use a solution prepared in Sulphuric acid for complete extraction of gum-resin. The incision of 0.8 to 1.5 cm deep is made on the main trunk and thick branches after dipping the knife in the solution at the angle of 60°. The yellow fragrant liquid starts coming out just after the incision for hours depending upon the plant. The liquid solidifies in the due course of time and the same is collected after a day or two. This collected gum resin is sold in the market as Guggulu. Since the plant is an important source of Guggulu gum over the past few years this species has been extensively tapped in Rajasthan and Gujarat and the trees were noticed to be progressively drying.




LD50 of Essential oil- 750 mg/ kg I.P. Sometimes there might be burning in the stomach, itching, and urticarial rashes on the skin after its use.




  • Stop using it for two days.
  • Saffron (Kesara) is an antidote.

Classical reference of Guggulu

Bhava Prakasha Nighantu Karpuradi Varga- 32


गुग्गुलु देव घूप कौशिक: पुर: |

कुम्भोलूखलक क्लीबे महिषाक्षः पलंकष ||

Bhava Prakasha Nighantu Karpuradi Varga- 34- 37

Type Characters and their utility

महिषाक्षो महानील: कुमुद: पद्म इत्यपि |

हिरण्यः पश्चमों ज्ञयो गुग्गुलो: पंञ्च जातय: ||

भृङ्गाञ्जननसवर्णस्त्रु महिषाक्ष इति स्मृत्त: |

महानीलस्तु विज्ञेय: स्वानामसमलक्षण: ||

कुमुदः कुमुदाभ: स्यात्पद्यों माणिक्य सन्निभ: | 

हिरण्याख्यस्तु हेमाभ:  पश्चानां लिंगमीरितम्‌ ||

महिषाक्षो महीनीलो गजेन्द्रणां हितातुभौ |

हयानां कुमुद: पद्म स्वस्थ्यारोग्यकरी परौ |

विशेषेण मनुष्याणां कनक: परिकीर्तित: |

कदाचिन्महिषाक्षश्च मत: कैश्चिनृणामपि ||

Bhava Prakasha Nighantu Karpuradi Varga- 38- 41

Properties and action

गुग्गुलुविशद स तिक्तो वीर्यो उष्ण पित्तल: सर: |

कषाय: कटुक: पाके कटु  रूक्षो लघु: पर: ||

भग्रसन्धानकृद्‌ वृष्य: सूक्ष्म: स्वरयो रसायन: |

दीपन: पिच्छिलो बल्य:  कफवात व्रण अपची: || 

मेदोमेहाश्च वातांश्च क्लेद कुष्ठाम मारुतान |

पिडका ग्रन्थि शोफा अर्शो गण्डमालाकृमी जयेत || 

माधुर्याच्छमंयेद्वात॑ कषाय त्वाच्च पित्तहा |

तिक्तत्वाद कफ जित्तेन गुग्गुलु: सर्वदोषहा ||

Bhava Prakasha Nighantu Karpuradi Varga- 42- 44

नव गुग्गुलु पुराणगुग्गुलु गुणकर्म:

स नवो बृहणो वृष्य: पुराणस्त्वति लेखन: |

स्निग्ध: कांचनसंकाश: पक्व जम्बूफलोपम: ||

नूतनो गुग्गुलुः प्रोक्तः सुगन्धि यस्तु पिच्छिल: ||

शुष्को दुर्गंधकश्चैव त्यक्त प्रकृति वर्णक: | 

पुराण: स तु विज्ञेयो गुगगुलु वीर्य वर्जितः |

Bhava Prakasha Nighantu Karpuradi Varga- 45

Contraindication during Guggulu Usage     

अम्ल तीक्ष्णमजीर्णञ्च व्यावाय श्रममातपम |

मद्य रोष त्यजेत्सम्यग गुणार्थी पुरसेवक: ||

Dhanwantri Nighantu Chandanadi Varga- 117

गुग्गुलु: पिच्छिल: प्रोक्त: कटुस्तिक्त: कषायवान्‌ |

वर्ण्य: स्वरयो लघु: सूक्षमो रूक्षो वातबलासजित्‌ ||

Kaiydeva Nighantu Aushadi Varga. 1412- 1420

स्वभावविशदा: स्निग्धा: स्वामोक्ष: कण्ठशोधना: |

सर्वे समानवीयस्ति सर्वे रसगुणै: समा: |

आस्वादे तिक्तकटुका: कषाया: स्वादव: परम्‌ ||

महिषाक्षो गजेन्द्राणां महानीलश्च शस्यते |

वाजिनां कुमुदः पद्मो नराणां कनकः स्मृतः ||

माधुर्याच्छमयेदू वात॑ कषायत्वाच्च पित्तजित ||

तिक्तत्वाच्छलेष्महच्चैव॑ गुग्गुलु: सर्वदोषहा |

कृष्ण: शोणितपित्ते च शलेष्मपित्ते च पिङ्गल: || 

वातपिते तथा श्वेतो गुग्गुलुः शस्यते तथा |

गुग्गुलुर्मधुरस्तिक्तो कषायः कटुकः कटु: ||  

पाकेरुक्षो लघु: सूक्ष्म: वीर्य उष्ण:  सरस्तथा |

दीपन: कफवातघ्नो वृष्यः बल्यो रसायन: ||

भग्रसन्धानकृत्‌ स्वरयो बृहण विनियच्छति |

मेदोमेहाश्च वातास्र ग्रंथि गण्ड व्रणापचीः ||

पिडका क्लेद शोफा अर्शो कण्डू कुष्ठ वमिकृमीन |

Kaiydeva Nighantu Aushadi Varga, 1420- 1421

गुग्गुलु शाक 

तच्छाकं मधुरं रुक्षं कटुकं शिशिरं |

विष्टम्भी सृष्ष्ट विण्मूत्र कफमारुतकोपनम्‌ ||

Raja Nighantu Chandandi Varga, 105

गुग्गुलु: कटु तिक्त उष्ण कफमारूतकासजित्‌ |

कृमि वातोदर प्लीह शोफ अर्शोघ्न रसायन: || 

Raja Nighantu Chandanadi Varga, 107

गन्धराज (कण) गुग्गुलुः

कण गुग्गुलु: कटूष्ण: सुरभिवातिनाशन: |

शूलगुल्मोदराध्मान कफघ्नश्च रसायन: ||

Raja Nighantu Chandanadi Varga, 109

भूमिज गुग्गुलुः

गुग्गुलुरभूमिजस्तिक्त: कटूष्ण: कफवातजित्‌ |

उमाप्रियश्च भूतघ्नो मेध्य: सौरभ्याद: सदा ||

गुग्गुलुस्तिक्त कटुको वीर्योष्ण:  कफ वातकृत्‌ |

वातव्याधि गण्डमाला व्रणदिषु च शस्यते ||

Kaiydeva Nighantu Aushadhi Varga, 1412

Qualities of genuine Guggulu

आतपैस्ते विलीयन्ते क्षिप्राश्च अग्नौ  ज्वलन्तिहि |

Priya Nighantu Haritkyadi Varga. 80

Adverse effect of excessive usage of Guggulu

अतिमात्रप्रयुक्तस्तु कुरुते विविधान्‌ गदान्‌ |

क्लैव्यास्य शोष तिमिर कार्श्यमोहातिसारकान्‌ ||

Kaiydeva Nighantu Aushadhi Varga, 1407

गुग्गुलु सृजनम्‌ 

दानवेन्द्रविजितान्‌ पुरा सुराभ्रष्टकान्तिघतिवीर्यते जन: |

वीक्ष्य विष्णुरमृत॑ किलांसृजद्‌ गुग्गुलुं बलपुर्ज प्रदम ||

Kaiydeva Nighantu Aushadhi Varga, 1408- 1409

गुग्गुलु पादप प्रापतिसंग्रहण

मरुभूमिषु जायन्ते  प्रायशः पुरपादपा: |

मानोमयूखै: संतपता ग्रीष्मे मुंचति गुग्गुलम्‌ ||

हिमान्विताश्च हेमन्ते विधिना त॑ समाहरेत |

Kaiydeva Nighantu Aushadhi Varga, 1409- 1410

गुग्गुलु भेदा: 

हिरण्य: कुमुद: पद्मो महानील स्तश्चथ्वापर: ||

पश्चमो महिषाक्ष्म नामतः परिकीर्त्तित: |

Kaiydeva Nighantu Aushadhi Varga, 1410- 1411

गुग्गुलु जातय: लक्षणानि गुणाश्च

सुवर्णवर्ण: प्रथम: कुमुद: कुमुदद्युति: ||

पद्मरागनिभ: पद्यो महानीलश्च नागधृक | 

Kaiydeva Nighantu Aushadhi Varga, 1412

उत्तम गुग्गुलु स्वरुप;

आतप असते विलीयन्ते क्षिप्राश्च अग्नौ ज्वलन्ति हि |

Raja Nighantu Chandanadi Varga, 107

गन्धराज गुग्गुलु गुणा:

कणगुग्गुलु कटूष्ण: सुरभिर्वातनाशन: |

शूल गुल्मोदराध्मान कफघनश्च रसायन: ||

Raja Nighantu Chandanadi Varga, 109

भूमिज गुग्गुलु गुणा:

गुग्गुलुभूमिजस्तिक्त: कटु उष्ण: कफवातजित्‌ |

उमाप्रियश्च भूतघ्नो मेध्य: सौरभ्यदः सदा ||

Sushruta Samhita

सुगन्धि: सुलघुः सूक्ष्मतीक्ष्णोष्ण: कटुको रस: ।

कटु पाकः सरो हद्यो गुग्गुलुः सिग्ध पिच्छिल: ||

Chakra Dutta, Sotha Chikitsa, 39- 15

शोथ चिकित्सा गुग्गुल्वादिप्रयोगाः

पुरोमूत्रेण सेव्येत पिप्पली वा पयो अन्विता | 

गुड़ वा अभ्या तुल्या विश्व वा शोथ रोगिणाम्‌ ॥

Bhava Parkasha, Madhyama Khanda, 39- 30

मेद रोगे दशांग गुग्गुलु 

व्योष अग्नि त्रिफला मुस्त विडंग गुग्गुले समं |

खादन्सर्वाञयेद्‌ व्याधि मेद:श्लेष्मामवातजान ||

Sushruta Samhita

स नवो बृहणे वृष्य पुराण स्तव अपकर्षण: |  

तैक्ष्णोष्णात्‌ कफवातघ्र: सरत्वात्‌ मलपित्तनुत ||

सौगंधात पुति कोष्ठघन: सौक्ष्म्य अनिल दीपनं ||   

Chakra Dutta. 40. 1


गुग्गुलुं रुबुतैल॑ वा गोमूत्रेण पिबन ननरः |

वातवृद्धिं निहन्याशुं चिरेकालानुबन्धिनीम्‌ ||

Shodhala Nighnatu


…. जयति। …..अधिक कफ अम्ल पित्तम  प्रयोजित  गुग्गुलु; क्रमश: |  

Chakra Dutta Nadi Vrana Chikitsa, 45- 15

नाडी व्रण चिकित्सायां सप्ताङ्ग गुग्गुलुः 

Shodhala Nighnatu


ये क्लेदपाकसुति गन्धवन्तो व्रणा महान्त: सरुज: सशोफा |

प्रयान्ति ते गुग्गुलु मिश्रितेन पीतेन शान्ति त्रिफला रसेन || 

Shodhala Nighantu, Gada Nigreha, 4- 7- 27


क्वाथोदकेन मिलितस्त्रिफलोद्धवेन पीत: प्रणाशयति तत्खलु गुग्गुलु |

Gada Nigreha, 4. 7. 25

नवकार्षिकगुग्गुलु: ।

Vrinda Madhava, 22- 47, Vanga Sena, Vata Vyadhi, 137

गगुलुं कोष्टर शीर्षे च गुडूची त्रिफलाम्भसा |

श्रीरेणरण्डतैल॑ वा पिबेद्‌ वा बृद्धदारुकम ||

Chakra Dutta, 43- 11


गुग्गुलुं मूत्रयुक्त॑ वा विद्रधौ कफसम्भवे |

Chakra Dutta, Vata Vyadhi Chikitsa, 22- 50


रास्रायास्तु पलञ्चक कर्षान्‌ पंञ्च च गग्गलो: ।

सर्पिषा गुटिकां कृत्वा खादेद्दा गृध्रसीहराम ||

Bhava Parkasha, Madhyama Khanda, 54

कुष्ठ रोग चिकित्सायां गुग्गुलुयोगा: 

स्वायम्भुव: गुग्गुलु

कैशोर गुग्गुलु

एकविंशति गुग्गुलु

Chakra Dutta, 43- 10

कफजन्य विद्रधि चिकित्सायां विशुद्ध गुग्गुलु प्रयोग:

त्रिफला शिग्रु वरुण दशमूलाम्भसा पिबेत्‌ |

गुग्गुलुं मूत्रयुक्त॑ वा विद्रधौ कफसम्भवे ||

Chakra Dutta, 46/ 12- 19

भगन्दर चिकित्सायां नवकार्षिक सप्तविंशतिश्च गुग्गुलु योगा:

Bhava Parkasha, Vata Rakta Adhikara, 29/ 170- 246

वातरक्तादि विकाराणां गुग्गुलु योगा:

समशर्कर गुग्गुलु 

चन्द्रप्रभा गुटिका

पुनर्नवा गुग्गुलु 

अमृता गुग्गुलु

कैशोर गुग्गुलु 

कैशोर गुग्गुलु

सिंहनाद गुग्गुलु

Charaka Samhita, Chikitsa Sthana, 18


शलाजतु विधानेने गुग्गुलुं वा प्रयोजयेत्‌ |

Sushruta Samhita, Uttara Tantra, 21- 53, Vrinda Madhava, 59- 46


गुग्गुलो कर्णदौर्गन्ध्ये  धूपन श्रेष्ठमुच्यते |

Sushruta Samhita, Chikitsa Sthana, 23- 12, Ashtanga Sangreha Chikitsa Sthana, 19- 3


गुग्गुलु वा मूत्रेण |

Sushruta Samhita, Chikitsa Sthana, 5


मूत्रवा गुग्गुलु श्रेष्ठम |

Ashtanga Hridya, Chikitsa Sthana, 4


गुग्गुलुं वा……| ….घृतप्लुतम्‌ |


वह्नौ ज्वलन्ति तपने विलयं प्रयान्ति

क्लिदन्ति कोष्ण सलिले पयस: समाना: |

ग्राह्मा: शुभा: परिहरे श्चिरकाल: जाता: |

नंगार वर्ण समपूय विगन्ध वर्णाम्‌ ||

Chakra Dutta, Vidridhi Chikitsa, 43- 4

विद्रधि चिकित्सायां गुग्गुलु प्रयोग: 

पुनर्नवा दारु विश्व द्शमूलाभया अम्भसा |

गुग्गुलुं रुबुतैल॑ च पिबेन्मारुत विद्रधौ ||

Bhava Parkasha, Vata Rakta Adhikara, 29- 45/ 46

वातरक्ते गुग्गुलु वटिका 

गुग्गुल्वमृतवल्लीभिर्दाक्षा (सुग) लंग रसेन वा |

त्रिफलाया रसैर्युक्त्या गुटिका: कोलसम्मिता: ||

भक्षयेन्मधुना आलोढय श्रृणु कुर्वन्ति यत्फलम्‌ |

पादस्फोट महाघोरं स्फुटत्स सर्वांग  संच्चयं |

तत्सर्व नाशयत्याशु साध्यश्चैव सशोणितम्‌ ||

Bhava Parkasha, Madhyama Khanda, 29- 43

वातरक्ते गुडूच्यानुपानम्‌ 

वत्सादन्युद्ध: क्वाथ: पीतो गुगगुलुमिश्रित: |

समीरण समायुक्त॑ शोणित सम्प्रणा शयेत || 

Chakra Dutta, 39- 12

शोथचिकित्साय गुग्गुलु प्रयोग: 

पुनर्नवादारु शुण्ठीक्वाधे मूत्रे च केवले |

देश मूलरसे वा अपि गुग्गुलु: शोथनाशन: ||

Bhava Parkasha, Sthoulya Adhikara, 39/ 85- 86

मेदो रोगे 

संम्पिष्य गात्रलेपा अर्धम विचर्चि शमं याति || 

हस्त पाद नुतो योज्यो गुग्गुलु: पंञ्च तिक्तक: |

अशक्तौ पंञ्च तिक्ताख्यं घृत॑ खादेदतन्द्रित: ||

Sushruta Samhita, Sutra Sthana, 15/ 32


उत्पने तु शिलाजतु गुगगुलु गौ मूत्र त्रिफलालाहेरजी

रसानाजनमधुयवमुद्कोरदूषक श्यामा कोद्दालकादीनां

विरूक्षणच्छेदनीयानां च द्रव्याणां विधिवदुपयोग: |

Ashtanga Hridya, Sutra Sthana, 14- 23

रसांजनस्यमहत: पश्चमूलस्य गुग्गुलो: |

शिलाजतु प्रयोगश्च साग्निमन्थ रसोहित: ||

Gada Nigreha, 4- 3- 73/ 74

व्रण (कुष्ठ – नाडी व्रण – भगन्दर- गलगण्डादया: )

फलत्रिक्वाथ युतो व्रणेषु कुष्ठेषु नाडीषुभगन्दरेषु |

स कांचनारत्रिफलोप कुलत्थ: सगण्डमाला गलगण्डरोगे ||

Sushruta Samhita, Chikitsa Sthana, 23- 12


गुग्गुलुं वा मूत्रेण बर्षाभूकषायानुपानं वा |

Charaka Samhita, Chikitsa Sthana, 13/ 153


शिलाजतुविधानेन गुग्गुलुं वा प्रयोजयेत्‌ |

शिलाजतूनां मूत्नाणां गुग्गुलोस्त्रैफलस्य च ||

Charaka Samhita, Chikitsa Sthana, 28/ 241


रसायनानां … सर्वैषामुपयोग:  प्रशस्यते |

शैलस्य जतुनो अत्यर्थ पयसा गुग्गुलोस्तथा ||

Ashtanga Hridya, Uttara Tantra, 40- 48

मेदो अनिलो गुग्गुलु: 

Ashtanga Hridya Chikitsa Sthana, 21/ 48- 49


मूत्ररैवा शीलयेत्‌ पथ्यां गुगगुलुं गिरिसम्भवम्‌ |

व्योषाग्रिमुस्त त्रिफला विडंग गुग्गुलुम समम्‌ ||

खादन्‌ सर्वान्‌ जयेद्‌ व्याधीन्‌ मेद: श्लेष्मवातजान् |

Ashtanga Hridya Chikitsa Sthana, 4- 14

श्वासरोगे धूम्रपानार्थम्‌ 

शल्लकीं गुग्गुलुं लौहं पद्मकं वा घृतप्लुतम |

Ashtanga Hridya Chikitsa Sthana, 3- 12


मूत्रेण वा शोफिषु गुग्गुलु: स्याद्‌ गायत्रिसारक्वाथनेन कुस्ती |

मेदस्विनां चापिहित: कषाये बिल्वादिजे वा शिखिमन्थजे वा ||

Specific Formulation of Guggulu

  • Gokshuradi Guggulu for Parmeha and Mutra Kriccha
  • Sinhanad Guggulu for Amavata, Pangu
  • Vatari Guggulu for Gradrasi, Kati Shula
  • Vyoshadi Guggulu for Amavata, Medo Roga
  • Kanchanara Guggulu for Gandmala and Apachi
  • Kaishore Guggulu for Vata Rakta, Parmeha Pidika
  • Trayodashang Guggulu for gridhrasi and Katigraha
  • Maha Yoga Raja Guggulu for Kustha, Vata Vyadhi       
  • Triphala Guggulu for Bhagandara, Arsha, Sotha
  • Lakshadi Guggulu for Asthi Bhagna, Asthi Ruka

Contraindication during usage of Guggulu

Bhava Prakasha in Karpuradi Varga- 45, mentioned the Contraindication during Guggulu Usage     


अम्ल तीक्ष्णमजीर्णञ्च व्यावाय श्रममातपम |

मद्य रोष त्यजेत्सम्यग गुणार्थी पुरसेवक: ||


Those who consume Guggulu should avoid sour substances, irritants, indigestion, intercourse, tiresomeness, exposure to sunlight, alcohol, and anger.

Contraindication and side effects of Guggulu

  • Guggulu is safe if used in recommended dosage under medical supervision for up to 24 weeks. If Guggulu is taken in a large dosage i.e more than 6 grams per day then it may result in headache, nausea, vomiting, hiccups, loose stool, skin irritation, itching, etc.        
  • A high dosage of Guggulu is also linked with liver damage.
  • Avoid the use of Guggulu during pregnancy and lactation.

Suggestive reading regarding Commiphora mukul

  • Tomar, Rinku & Kaur, Gunpreet & Sannd, Rajesh & Singh, Harbans & Sarkar, Biresh. (2014). A Review on Guggulu Formulations Used in Ayurveda. Annals of Ayurvedic Medicine. 32014. 3- 3.  
  • Thosar SL, Yende MR. Cultivation and Conservation of Guggulu (Commiphora mukul). Anc Sci Life. 2009 Jul; 29 (1): 22- 5. PMID: 22557340; PMCID: PMC3336300.
  • Rastogi S. Urticarial rashes following Guggulu intake: A case report. J Ayurveda Integr Med. 2017 Jul- Sep; 8 (3): 205- 206. doi: 10. 1016/ j. jaim. 2017. 04. 004. Epub 2017 Aug 18. PMID: 28826837; PMCID: PMC5607394.
  • Panda S, Kar A. Guggulu (Commiphora mukul) potentially ameliorates hypothyroidism in female mice. Phytother Res. 2005 Jan; 19 (1): 78- 80. doi: 10. 1002/ ptr. 1602. PMID: 15798994.
  • Shah R, Gulati V, Palombo EA. Pharmacological properties of guggulsterones, the major active components of gum guggul. Phytother Res. 2012 Nov; 26 (11): 1594-605. doi: 10. 1002/ ptr. 4647. Epub 2012 Mar 3. PMID: 22388973.
  • Patel JK, Dudhamal TS, Gupta SK, Mahanta V. Efficacy of Kanchanara Guggulu and Matra Basti of Dhanyaka Gokshura Ghrita in Mootraghata (benign prostatic hyperplasia). Ayu. 2015 Apr-Jun; 36 (2): 138- 44. doi: 10. 4103/ 0974- 8520. 175552. PMID: 27011713; PMCID: PMC4784122.
  • Panigrahi HK. The effect of Abha Guggulu in the clinical management of fractures. Anc Sci Life. 1997 Jul;17 (1): 3- 9. PMID: 22556813; PMCID: PMC3331092.
  • Sudhakara G, Ramesh B, Mallaiah P, Sreenivasulu N, Saralakumari D. Protective effect of ethanolic extract of Commiphora mukul gum resin against oxidative stress in the brain of streptozotocin-induced diabetic Wistar male rats. EXCLI J. 2012 Aug 29; 11: 576- 592. PMID: 27847446; PMCID: PMC5099874. 
  • Bharati PL, Agrawal P, Prakash O. A case study on the management of dry gangrene by Kaishore GugguluSanjivani Vati, and Dashanga Lepa. Ayu. 2019 Jan-Mar; 40 (1): 48- 52. doi: 10. 4103/ ayu. AYU_244_18. PMID: 31831969; PMCID: PMC 6891997.
  • Rajoria K, Singh SK, Sharma RS, Sharma SN. Clinical study on Laksha Guggulu, Snehana, Swedana & Traction in Osteoarthritis (Knee joint). Ayu. 2010 Jan; 31 (1): 80- 7. doi: 10. 4103/ 0974- 8520. 68192. PMID: 22131690; PMCID: PMC3215328.
  • Acharya, Rabinarayan & Mishra, Sagar & Rout, Om. (2012). Oleogum resin Guggulu: A review of the medicinal evidence for its therapeutic properties. International Journal of Research in Ayurveda and Pharmacy. 3. 15- 21. 
  • Muguli G, Gowda VD, Dutta V, Jadhav AN, Menthe BB, Paramesh R, Babu UV. A contemporary approach to design, development, and evaluation of Ayurvedic formulation – Triphala Guggulu. Ayu. 2015 Jul- Sep; 36 (3): 318- 22. doi: 10. 4103/ 0974- 8520. 182748. PMID: 27313420; PMCID: PMC 4895760.
  • Ramachandran AP, Prasad SM, Prasad UN, Jonah S. A comparative study of Kaishora Guggulu and Amrita Guggulu in the management of Utthana Vatarakta. Ayu. 2010 Oct; 31 (4): 410- 6. doi: 10. 4103/ 0974- 8520. 82027. PMID: 22048531; PMCID: PMC3202258.
  • Deng R. Therapeutic effects of guggul and its constituent guggulsterone: cardiovascular benefits. Cardiovasc Drug Rev. 2007 Winter; 25 (4): 375- 90. doi: 10. 1111/ j. 1527- 3466. 2007. 00023. x. PMID: 18078436.
  • Vyas KY, Bedarkar P, Galib R, Prajapati PK. Comparative Anti-hyperlipidaemic activity of Navīna (fresh) and Purāṇa (old) Guggulu. Anc Sci Life. 2015 Oct-Dec; 35 (2): 101- 9. doi: 10. 4103/ 0257- 7941. 171672. PMID: 26865743; PMCID: PMC4728861.
  • Siddiqui MZ, Mazumder PM. Comparative Study of Hypolipidemic Profile of Resinoids of Commiphora mukul/Commiphora wightii from Different Geographical Locations. Indian J Pharm Sci. 2012 Sep; 74 (5): 422- 7. doi: 10. 4103/ 0250-474X. 108417. PMID: 23716870; PMCID: PMC3660868.
  • Srikanth, Narayanam & Khanduri, Shruti & Sharma, Bhagwan & Sarada, Ota & Singhal, Richa & deep, Vishav & Radhakrishnan, P & Gupta, Bharti & Borah, Tapashi & Makhija, Deepa. (2018). Clinical Evaluation of Yogaraj Guggulu, Gandharvahasta Taila, and Dhanwantara Taila in the Management of Osteoarthritis Knees. Journal of Research in Ayurvedic Sciences. 2. 209- 216. 10. 5005/ jp- journals- 10064- 0060.  
  • Bellamkonda R, Karuna R, Sasi Bhusana Rao B, Haritha K, Manjunatha B, Silpa S, Saralakumari D. Beneficiary effect of Commiphora mukul ethanolic extract against high fructose diet-induced abnormalities in carbohydrate and lipid metabolism in Wistar rats. J Tradit Complement Med. 2017 Jun 20; 8 (1): 203- 211. doi: 10. 1016/ j. jtcme. 2017. 05. 007. PMID: 29322010; PMCID: PMC5755988.
  • Satyavati GV. Gum guggul (Commiphora mukul)–the success story of an ancient insight leading to a modern discovery. Indian J Med Res. 1988 Apr; 87: 327- 35. PMID: 3049326.
  • Hedaoo, Mrinmayee & Patil, Trupti. (2021). A narrative review of Guggulu formulations of Ayurveda reflecting their percentage of Guggulu, pharmaceutics, and pharmacology. IP International Journal of Comprehensive and Advanced Pharmacology. 5. 151- 157. 10. 18231/ j. ijcaap. 2020. 031. 
  • Ramesh B, Karuna R, Sreenivasa Reddy S, Sudhakara G, Saralakumari D. Ethanolic extract of Commiphora mukul gum resin attenuates streptozotocin-induced alterations in carbohydrate and lipid metabolism in rats. EXCLI J. 2013 Jun 19; 12: 556- 68. PMID: 27004047; PMCID: PMC4800782.
  • Azharhusain, Shaikh & Shrivastava, Birendra & Quazi, Aamer & Arshad, Mohammad & Shaikh, Javed & Patwekar, Mohsina. (2022). International Journal of Ayurveda and Pharma Research Review Article A REVIEW ON GUGGULU [COMMIPHORA WIGHTII (ARN.) BHAND.], ITS PHYTOCHEMICAL CONSTITUTION & MODE OF ACTION. International Journal of Ayurveda and Pharma Research. 10. 74. 10. 47070/ ijapr. v10i5. 2298. 
  • Vyas, Kruti & Ruknuddin, Galib & Prajapati, Pradeep. (2014). GUGGULU [COMMIPHORA WIGHTII (Arn.) Bhandari] AND ITS FORMULATIONS IN BRIHATRAYEE -A REVIEW. Global J Res. Med. Plants & Indigen. Med.. 3. 359- 369. 
  • Meena, Ajay. (2019). Guggul (Commiphora wightii (Arn.) Bhandari).
  • Sarup P, Bala S, Kamboj S. Pharmacology and Phytochemistry of Oleo-Gum Resin of Commiphora wightii (Guggulu). Scientifica (Cairo). 2015; 2015: 138039. doi: 10. 1155/ 2015/ 138039. Epub 2015 Oct 26. PMID: 26587309; PMCID: PMC4637499. 
  • Nanda, Gopal. (2013). Pharmacology of Guggulu with special reference to conceptual pharmacognosy in Vedas. International Journal of Research in Ayurveda & Pharmacy. 4. 452- 453. 10. 7897/ 2277- 4343. 04329.
  • Majeed, Muhammed & Badmaev, Vladimir & Pacchetti, Barbara & Prakash, Lakshmi. (2003). Standardization of Commiphora mukul extracts in Dislipidemia and Cardiovascular disease. Nutrafoods. 2. 45- 51.  
  • Kunnumakkara AB, Banik K, Bordoloi D, Harsha C, Sailo BL, Padmavathi G, Roy NK, Gupta SC, Aggarwal BB. Googling the Guggul (Commiphora and Boswellia) for Prevention of Chronic Diseases. Front Pharmacol. 2018 Aug 6; 9: 686. doi: 10. 3389/ fphar. 2018. 00686. PMID: 30127736; PMCID: PMC 6087759.
  • Rani, Rachana & Mishra, Sudeep & Vidyapith, Banasthali & Bansthali, & Rajasthan, (2013). Phytochemistry of Guggul (Commiphora wightii): A Review. 
  • Bharti, Vijaya & Gupta, Umesh & Das, Satya. (2015). COMMIPHORA MUKUL EXTRACT AND GUGGULSTERONE EXHIBIT ANTITUMOUR ACTIVITY AND INDUCTION OF APOPTOSIS IN ORAL CANCER CELLS. Asian Journal of Pharmaceutical and Clinical Research. 8. 291- 295.
  • Kulloli, Ravikiran & Kumar, Suresh. (2013). Journal of Medicinal Plants Research Commiphora wightii (Arnott) Bhandari: A threatened plant of conservation concern. Journal of Medicinal Plants Research. 7. 10. 5897/ JMPR2013. 2587.
  • Singh, Betsy & Mishra, Lakshmi & Vinjamury, Sivarama & Aquilina, Nanette & Singh, Vijay & Shepard, Neil. (2003). The effectiveness of Commiphora mukul for Osteoarthritis of the knee: An outcomes study. Alternative therapies in health and medicine. 9. 74- 9.
  • Surendran, Saritha. (2018). Commiphora mukul: An Overview. Research Journal of Pharmacy and Technology. 11. 10. 5958/ 0974- 360X. 2018. 00589.9.
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Article Written By: Dr. Sahil Gupta (B.A.M.S., M.H.A.)

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