Home Herbs A to Z Manjista (Rubia cordifolia)

Manjista (Rubia cordifolia)

Manjista - Rubia cordifolia

Manjista, commonly known as ‘Indian Madder’ is a deciduous climber with weak flexible stem. It is commonly occurring throughout thc hilly regions in India. The name ‘Manjista’ indicates that it imparts normal colour to the skin as it purifies blood. The word ‘Rubia’ means red, redness alluding to the dye obtained from it and ‘cordifolia’ indicates it’s heart shaped leaves. Manjista is one of the commonly seen plant in India and is widely used in different medicinal preparations. It is common content in many medicines which increase skin complexion.  


Dr.Gupta’sIAFA conducted various studies to find out the active phytoconstituents in Manjista and its various actions. The experienced scholars have successfully proven theBlood purifier, Astringent, Diuretic, Anthelmintic, Hemostatic, Uterine stimulant, Antidiabetic, Antitumor, Antiinflammatory, Antioxidant, Neuro protective and Antiallergic actions of Manjista. The experts of IAFA found out that antitumor activity is shown by monoclonal antibodies derived from Manjista. The hydroalcoholic root extract of Manjista is a potent antiinflammatory agent. Antioxidant actions are shown by methanolic extract of this plant. Extract of roots and rhizomes of Manjista shows neuroprotective potential and invivo antioxidant properties. The ethanolic extract of roots of Manjista also shows antioxidant action.

Action of Manjista - Rubia cordifolia in Allergies

IAFA experts are putting continuous efforts to prove the antiallergic property of Manjista. The plant contains manjistin, purpurin, xanthopurpurin, pseudopurpurin, rubifolic acid, rubianin, ruberythric acid, sitosterol, beta scopoletol, fatty acids etc. Thus it is used as an anti allergic and antiinflammatory agent. It also pacifies aggravated Kapha and Pitta doshas. So Manjista as powder or decoction is used against allergic reactions due to Kapha and Pitta dosha.

Vernacular Names and Botanical Classification

Botanical Name Rubia cordifolia
Family Rubiaceae 
Native Names
Sanskrit Name Manjista, Vikasa
Hindi Name Manjit
English Name Indian Madder
Malayalam Name Poont, Manjatti
Kannada Name Manjiste, Citravalli
Marathi Name Manjista 

Ayurveda reference of Manjista - Rubia cordifolia

Morphology of Manjista - Rubia cordifolia

  • A deciduous climber-rvith weak flexible stems.
  • Leaves 4 in whorl, two often larger and with longer petioles. 
  • Flowers less than 1 in diameter, dark recl or pinkish brown in colour. 
  • Fruits  globose, dark purple or black, fleshy, succulent, with red juice. 
  • Seeds small.

Geographical distribution of Manjista - Rubia cordifolia

Manjista is commonly occurring throughout the hilly regions in India, ascending to 8,000 ft altitude. 

Phytoconstituents of Manjista - Rubia cordifolia

The plant contains manjistin, purpurin, xanthopurpurin, pseudopurpurin, rubifolic acid, rubianin, ruberythric acid, sitosterol, beta scopoletol, fatty acids etc.

Parts used of Manjista - Rubia cordifolia

  • Root

Dosage of Manjista - Rubia cordifolia

  • Powder(churna)- 1-3 g
  • Decoction (kwatha) – 60-100 ml

Medicinal Properties of Manjista - Rubia cordifolia

  • Sothahara – antiinflammatory 
  • Varnya – promote skin complexion 
  • Pramehahara – relieves diabetes 
  • Vranahara – useful in treating wounds
  • Arsoghna – cures piles
  • Kushtaghna – useful in skin diseases 
  • Vishaghna – useful in poisoning 
  • Jwaraghna – Cures fever 

Dr. Sahil Gupta Allergy Specialist

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– Dr. Sahil Gupta (B.A.M.S., M.H.A.)

Ayurvedic Allergy Specialist
CEO & Founder of IAFA®

Home remedies of Manjista - Rubia cordifolia

Ayurveda is widely used system of medicine in India from ancient times itself. It used many herbs that are seen around to treat diseases. Manjista is a commonly used herb in Ayurveda. As it is easily available and of its high medicinal value it is used in treating many diseases like, 

  • In Freckle (Vyanga) – Manjista root is powdered and triturated with honey to prepare a paste. It is then applied over skin.
  • In Diabetes (Prameha) – Decoction prepared from Manjista and Sandal is useful in diabetes. 
  • In Fracture (Bhagna) – A paste prepared from Manjista and Yastimadhu (Glycyrrhiza glabra) is triturated with sour gruel and applied. 
  • In Skin diseases (Kushta) – Powdered root of Manjista is mixed with honey and applied. 
  • In Fever (Jwara) – Decoction is made from root of Manjista and taken.
  • In Swelling (Sotha) – Root of Manjista is powdered and made into a paste with sour gruel and applied over swelling. 
  • As Blood purifier (Raktasodhaka) – Decoction made of Manjista roots are taken to purify blood. 
  • In Wound (Vrana) – Root of Manjista is made into a decoction and used to wash wounds. 

Article Written By: Dr. Sahil Gupta, Ayurvedic Allergist

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