Shilajit: Meaning, Health Benefits, Side Effects

Shilajit: Meaning, Health Benefits, Side Effects

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Bajaj Finserv Health
November 24, 20228 mins read

Synopsis

Shilajit is a plant-based mineral supplement that has been used for thousands of years by ancient Indians. Scientists are also studying it to find treatments for diabetes, high blood pressure, erectile dysfunction, and cancer.

Key Takeaways

  • For more than 3000 years, shilajit has been extensively mentioned in written history
  • Many people believe that shilajit originated in the Himalayan Mountains and India 
  • The Charaka Samhita and Sushrut Samhita explicitly describe how to prepare shilajit to treat a wide range of diseases

What is Shilajit? 

Shilajit is one of the various herb and mineral combinations used in Ayurveda, a medical practice that has its roots in India and has been practised for thousands of years. Traditional herbal medicine has employed shilajit to treat a broad range of ailments. It is abundant in minerals and includes fulvic acid, a significant chemical. It is a dark-brownish resin derived from rock strata found in many mountain ranges worldwide, such as the Himalayan, Tibetan, and Altai highlands. Shilajit benefits in many health-related diseases. 

Shilajit Benefits 

Shilajit may assist the body in several ways when administered properly. The presence of several minerals and the high concentration of fulvic and humic acids may contribute to this. Let us see some of the shilajit benefits and shilajit uses.

Alzheimer's illness 

Memory, behaviour and thinking issues are all symptoms of Alzheimer's disease, a degenerative brain ailment. Some medications can help with Alzheimer's symptoms. However, other experts contend that shilajit's molecular makeup suggests it might stop or reduce the growth of Alzheimer's. 

Fulvic acid is an antioxidant that makes up the majority of shilajit. By reducing tau protein buildup, this potent antioxidant supports cognitive function. Although tau proteins are a crucial component of your neurological system, a buildup can result in brain cell injury. 

Shilajit's fulvic acid, according to researchers, may prevent the aberrant development of tau protein and lessen inflammation, which might help with Alzheimer's symptoms. Nevertheless, further studies and clinical trials are required.

Ageing 

According to a study, one of the main components of shilajit, fulvic acid, has anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties. [1] As a result, it could assist in lowering the body's levels of free radicals and cellular harm, two important causes of ageing. 

Shilajit supplementation daily may help some people age more slowly and feel more energetic.

Shilajit Benefits

Insufficient testosterone 

Although testosterone is a key hormone for males, some men have lesser levels than others. Low testosterone is characterized by the following: 

  • Low sex drive 
  • Hair loss 
  • Tiredness,  
  • Increased body fat, 
  •  Muscle mass loss 

A 250 milligram (mg) dosage of pure shilajit was administered twice daily to a particular set of participants in a clinical investigation that involved male volunteers between the ages of 45 and 55. According to one clinical research, [2] those who received pure shilajit had considerably greater testosterone levels than those in the placebo group after 90 days. Shilajit, when administered in the correct quantity, benefits males at a higher level. One of the best shilajit benefits for males is that it significantly increases testosterone levels.

Anaemia 

When the amount of healthy cells or haemoglobin in the blood is insufficient, anaemia can occur. Iron deficiency is one of the numerous factors that contribute to anaemia. 

Numerous bodily symptoms, such as the following, can be caused by an iron deficiency: 

  • Irregular heartbeat  
  • Exhaustion and sluggishness 
  • Headache  
  • Chilly feet and hands 

Shilajit can help treat an iron deficiency as it has high quantities of humic acid and iron. But before taking supplements, it's crucial to discuss this option with a doctor.

Antiviral 

Shilajit contains a variety of minerals and chemicals that might aid in the battle against viruses. According to a study [3], shilajit can combat and eradicate a wide range of viruses, including certain herpes viruses, in isolated settings. 

While it does seem to be beneficial, researchers have noted that more studies with live subjects needed backup for these claims.

Chronic fatigue syndrome 

Chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS) is a long-term illness resulting in excessive weariness. Simple daily tasks might become difficult for people with CFS, making it difficult for them to attend work or school. According to research, supplements containing shilajit may help with CFS symptoms and energy restoration.

Mitochondrial dysfunction has been linked to CFS. Your cells' insufficient energy production results in this. In a 2012 study, scientists administered lab rats shilajit for 21 days before making them swim for 15 minutes every day for 21 days straight. [4] According to the findings, shilajit lessened the consequences of CFS. They believe this was caused by shilajit's ability to stop mitochondrial malfunction. These findings suggest that shilajit supplements, which naturally increase your body's mitochondrial activity, may help you feel more energized.

High-altitude illness 

A greater altitude can bring on the following symptoms: 

  • Pulmonary oedema
  • Sleepiness,  
  • Lethargy  
  • A generalized sensation of exhaustion and discomfort 
  • Dementia 
  • Hypoxia 

Low air pressure, chilly temperatures, and swift winds are all known to cause altitude sickness. Shilajit, according to researchers, may aid in overcoming issues related to high altitude.[5] 

Shilajit has several health advantages because it contains more than 84 minerals and fulvic acid. In addition, it may serve as a diuretic to remove extra fluid from your body, an anti-inflammatory to reduce inflammation, and an antioxidant to increase immunity and memory. Shilajit is believed to help prevent numerous diseases due to these advantages.

Healthy Heart 

Shilajit may also strengthen and protect the heart. Shilajit has been shown to have heart-protective properties in a recent study. [6] Animals who had shilajit treatment before suffering a cardiac injury showed less heart damage than animals who didn't. Shilajit should not be used by anybody with an active cardiac ailment since it may, in rare situations, lower blood pressure.

Liver cancer 

Shilajit also exhibits the potential to combat particular cancer cell types. According to one study, shilajit assisted in causing the liver's malignant cells to be destroyed.[7] 

Additionally, it prevented the spread of cancer cells. According to researchers' findings, Shilajit has an anti-cancer effect [8].

Obesity 

Excess weight on your frame may wear out your muscles and strain your bones. Those who took an oral supplement of pure shilajit and were fat responded to exercise better than those who did not. Shilajit triggers genes in the body that aid the skeletal muscles better in adapting to a new activity. Over time, this can result in decreased tiredness and increased strength.

Other Shilajit Benefits

  • Shilajit and spirulina are an ideal combination for bone remineralization.  
  • Shilajit is a significant multivitamin, and spirulina is loaded with minerals 
  • Like shilajit, Haritaki is also strongly recommended by several scientific studies for treating diabetes and maintaining healthy blood sugar levels. Managing diabetes is one of the major benefits of both haritaki and shilajit
Additional Read: Haritaki Benefits

Shilajit Side Effects 

There might be negative consequences from using a supplement like Shilajit. These adverse effects might be mild or severe. The safety of shilajit usage, whether short- or long-term, needs to be understood due to a shortage of studies. However, a few shilajit side effects and negative consequences might arise, such as: 

  • Shilajit may raise iron levels  
  • It should be avoided by those with disorders like hemochromatosis, which is characterized by an excess of iron in the blood, until additional human studies can be conducted 
  • Shilajit has the potential to change the body's hormone composition, including a significant rise in the total testosterone level 
  • Shilajit that is raw or uncooked may include heavy metals or fungi that might make you ill 
Additional Read: St. John's Wort Uses and Side EffectsShilajit benefits

Precautions For Shilajit 

  • Heavy metals, including lead, mercury, and arsenic, may be present in impure shilajit 
  • Shilajit is suitable for human ingestion when it has been cleaned and is ready for use 
  • Pigeon meat, horse gram (Kulthi), and black nightshade should not be consumed together with shilajit (Solanum nigrum) 
  • Shilajit should not be used by pregnant or nursing women because there is little information on its safety during these phases of life 
  • Because there is no information on its safety, avoid administering it to young children and elderly people

Shilajit Dosage  

Shilajit is available online, and you should always consult a healthcare professional before taking a supplement. A standard or suitable dose of shilajit cannot be established due to insufficient scientific data. Even though participants in shilajit studies are often under medical supervision, there is still a need for more studies on doses for different groups and health requirements.

How to Consume Shilajit? 

Most often offered in powdered or liquid form, shilajit will include instructions for preparation on the package. The liquid version can be taken one to three times a day and is often diluted in milk or water. Check with your ayurvedic doctor or physician before continuing since they could have unique recommendations for you. As per the advice, the powder form may also be taken every day by mixing it with a glass of milk. The maximum safe daily dose is between 300 and 500 mg for most healthy individuals; for some, it may even be lower. It might not be safe for you to use this product if you have certain medical problems or allergies. 

Generally speaking, shilajit is a very safe natural supplement. It does not appear to cause any side effects in the vast majority of users, and there are no documented cases of shilajit overdose. If you're looking for a safe, cost-effective supplement to support a healthy heart or immune system, then shilajit may be worth looking into. But be sure to contact Bajaj Finserv Health to speak with a doctor about whether it's right for you.

Shilajit: Meaning, Health Benefits, Side Effects banner
 
  1. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3296184/
  2. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/26395129/
  3. https://iris.unito.it/retrieve/handle/2318/1521394/38005/Paper%20post%20print.pdf
  4. https://www.moolihai.com/benefits-of-shilajit/
  5. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2876922/
  6. https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s12012-014-9245-3
  7. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4882837/
  8. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC9358466/

Please note that this article is solely meant for informational purposes and Bajaj Finserv Health Limited (“BFHL”) does not shoulder any responsibility of the views/advice/information expressed/given by the writer/reviewer/originator. This article should not be considered as a substitute for any medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Always consult with your trusted physician/qualified healthcare professional to evaluate your medical condition. The above article has been reviewed by a qualified doctor and BFHL is not responsible for any damages for any information or services provided by any third party.

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