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    Rasna (Alpinia calcarata)

    Rasna – Alpinia calcarata

    Rasna, commonly known as Lesser galanga is one of most commonly used herb for the alleviation of inflammatory conditions and bacterial diseases. Rasna is the best used herb for curing swelling and inflammation. It is used in form of decoction or powder to cure various diseases. Rasna is also known for it’s antibacterial actions and the ability to pacify skin allergic conditions. 


    Dr.Gupta’s IAFA have been studying on readily available herbs for the purpose of alleviating allergic condition. Our experts studied on Rasna and proven the plant’s therapeutic activities like Aromatic, Stimulant, Carminative, Antibacterial, Anti-inflammatory actions etc. Vidanga can be used in various diseases like Rheumatoid arthritis, Gouty arthritis, Skin disorders, Digestive disorders etc.  Hexane extract of Rasna shows antimalarial action. Ethanolic extract of Rasna causes inhibiton of Th1 cytokines thus can be used as a potent immunosuppressive agent. Extract of Rasna is also proven to be antioxidant in action. 

    Action of Rasna – Alpinia calcaratain Allergies

    IAFA experts have successfully proven the antiallergic property of the plant Rasna. The plant contains phytoconstituents like methyl cinnamate, cineole, camphor, pinene, galangol, alpinol, galangin etc. These phytoconstituents aids the antiallergic, antibacterial and anti-inflammatory property of Rasna. It can be effectively used to alleviate skin allergic conditions. 

    Vernacular names and Classification

    Botanical NameAlpinia calcarata 
    Native Names
    Sanskrit NameRasna, Sugandha, Surasa
    Hindi NameRasan
    English NameLesser galanga 
    Malayalam NameAratta
    Kannada Name Rasna, Chikkadumparasme
    Marathi NameRasana

    Ayurveda reference of Rasna – Alpinia calcarata

    Morphology of Rasna – Alpinia calcarata

    • An erect under shrub 
    • Stem is slender
    • Leaves are lanceolate, acuminate, green and glossy
    • Inflorescence is panicle
    • Flowers are yellow coloured
    • Fruits are globose, capsule and red on ripening 

    Geographical distribution of Rasna – Alpinia calcarata

    Rasna grows very commonly in South India, especially Karnataka, Kerala and Andhrapradesh.

    Phytoconstituents of Rasna – Alpinia calcarata

    The plant contains phytoconstituents like methyl cinnamate, cineole, camphor, pinene, galangol, alpinol, galangin etc.

    Parts used of Rasna – Alpinia calcarata

    • Root
    • Leaf
    • Whole plant 

    Dosage of Rasna – Alpinia calcarata

    • Powder(churna)- 3-6 g
    • Decoction(kwatha)- 40-60 ml

    Medicinal Properties of Rasna – Alpinia calcarata

    • Kasa hara – relieves cough
    • Sulahara-relieves pain
    • Sophahara – relieves swelling 
    • Swasahara – relieves asthma 
    • Dipana – carminative 
    • Jwaraghna – useful in fever
    • Pacana – digestant 
    • Vishaghna – useful in poisoning 

    Home remedies of Rasna – Alpinia calcarata

    Ayurveda is not only a treatment system but also a lifestyle. The treatment system adopted by Ayurveda is purely based on naturally available herbs. Rasna is one of the most widely used herb. Due to its high medicinal value it is used in treating many diseases like,

    • In disorders of Vata (Vatavyadhi) – Powder or decoction of Rasna is effective in disorders of vata.
    • In Gouty arthritis (Vatarakta)  – Decoction prepared from Rasna, Tinospora cordifolia and Cassia fistula is taken with oil of Ricinus communis
    • In Rheumatoid arthritis (Amavata) – Decoction prepared from Rasna, Tinospora cordifolia, Ricinus communis, Cedrus deodara and Zingiber officinale is very effective in rheumatoid arthritis. 
    • In Swelling (Sopha) – Warm paste of Rasna with water is applied over the area of swelling. 
    • In Sula (Pain) – Parts of Rasna is collected, crushed and made into a decoction which is effective in pacifying pain.
    • As a carminative (Deepana) – Rasna is powdered and taken before food. It can act as a carminative. 
    • In Fever (Jwara) – Decoction made of Rasna is taken to cure fever. 
    • As Digestant (Pacana) – Decoction of Rasna is taken.

    Article Written By: Dr. Sahil Gupta, Ayurvedic Allergist


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