Jatamansi, Spikenard (Nardostachys Jatamansi)

Jatamansi (Nardostachys Jatamansi) is a perennial herb about 10-60cm in height having long stout, rhizomes root. The leaves are elongated and spatulated while few leaves are sessile, oblong, or sub-ovate. The flowers are pink bell-shaped. Its roots are thick and have too many hairs.

General Definition

It is known as Jatamansi because of its thick roots and excessive hair (jata in Sanskrit). It is made up of two words: Jata refers to dreadlocks, and manasi refers to humans. It is a superb medicinal herb that has been utilized for numerous therapeutic purposes since ancient times. The main medicinal materials utilized in preparation are the dried rhizomes and roots. Spikenard rhizomes (underground stems) can be crushed and distilled to produce a strongly scented amber-colored essential oil with a fairly thick viscosity. This oil is used as a perfume, incense, sedative, and herbal medicine to treat sleeplessness, labor complications, and other minor diseases.

Its effects on the body are medicinal in nature. It offers tranquil, pleasant, and relaxing qualities and is a natural nervine tonic and memory enhancer. It is employed to naturally treat mental illnesses including schizophrenia and epilepsy, as well as stress, anxiety, and sadness. It also promotes restful sleep. Healthy sleep is defined as being free of addiction and depressive symptoms.

It is offered in the market in a variety of forms, including powder and oil. Ursolic acid, acacin, kanshone A, octacosanol, nardosinone, nardosinonediol, aristolen-9beta-ol, oleanolic acid, and beta-sitosterol are some of the chemical components it includes. Additionally, it contains photocatechuic acid, nardal, jatamansic acid, jatamol A and B, spirojatamol, terpenoid, neolignans, taraxerone, and valeranone.


Botanical name - Nardostachys jatamansi

Kingdom - Plantae

Sub kingdom - Viridiplantae

Infra-kingdom - Streptophyta (Land plants)

Super division - Embryophyta

Division - Tracheophyta

Sub- division - Spermatophyta

Class - Magnoliopsida

Super order - Asteranae

Order - Dispsacles

Family - Valerianaceae

Genus - Nardostachys

Species - Jatamansi


It is found in the Himalayas of Nepal, China, and India at elevations ranging from 11,000 to 15000 feet, spanning from Kumaon to Sikkim at 17000 feet and Bhutan.

Other Names

Botanical name - Nardostachys jatamansi

Common Name - Jatamansi, Muskroot, Jatamashi, Balchar

Hindi Name - Jatamasi

Sanskrit Name - Jatamansi-(hairy entangled roots/ rhizome), Nalanda (aromatic), Tapasvini, Vilomasa, Bhutajata, 

Telugu Name - Jatamansi

English Name - Spikenard

Marathi Name - Jatamansi

Gujarati Name - Jatamansi

Tamil & Malayalam Name - Jatamamsi

Ayurvedic Properties


Hindi / Sanskrit


Rasa (Taste)

Tikta, Kashaya, Madhura

Bitter, Astringent, Sweet

Guna (Physical Property)

Laghu, Snigdha

Light, Unctuous

Virya (Potency)



Vipaka (Post-Digestive Taste)



Effects On Doshas

It balances all three doshas (vata, pitta, and kapha), but particularly Pitta and Kapha.

Classical Categorization

Charaka Samhita

Sushrut Samhita


Kaiyadeva Nighantu

  • Sajnasthapana - Herbs used in the restoration of consciousness
  • Kandughna - Herbs used to alleviate itching
  • Tikta Skandha - Herbs with a bitter taste
  • Elajanadi Gana,
  • Eladi gana
  • Njanadi Gana,
  • Eladi gana
  • Oshadhi Vargha
  • Sarvaushadhika Varga,
  • Sugandhamalaka Varga

Practical Uses

  • Hair growth: Jatamansi oil promotes hair growth. It also benefits smooth, silky, and healthy hair. It is used to treat hair-related issues such as hair loss and premature greying.
  • Cardiac health: It has a hypotensive effect and is used in the treatment of high blood pressure. It is also beneficial in the treatment of heart palpitations and is a good cardiac tonic.
  • Memory and learning: The medicinal herb is beneficial in improving brain capacities and combating mental issues, resulting in mental quiet and tranquillity. It increases memory and decreases forgetfulness.
  • Strengthens the nervous system: It helps to bring vitality, vigor, and strength to the body, which is beneficial to the nervous system.
  • Stress buster: By bringing the body's biochemical processes back into balance, the plant has the ability to lower stress, anxiety, despair, and tension. It serves as one of the best mind rejuvenator tonics and is beneficial for the mind to be clear and healthy. Additionally, it has a calming and sedative impact on the brain.
  • Hyperpigmentation: It is used to enhance complexion and give the body a radiant and shiny appearance. When applied, root powder diluted with water improves the texture of the skin.
  • Liver problems: It has a hepatoprotective effect. It treats hepatitis, avoids jaundice, and shrinks the liver.
  • Antifungal: It boosts immunity and guards against numerous infections.
  • It is used to treat memory loss, headaches, and sleeplessness.
  • It has carminative and antispasmodic effects and is helpful for intestinal gas and stomach pain.
  • It is helpful for menopause and dysmenorrhea (painful periods).

Ayurvedic Product From Nardostachys Jatamansi

  • Jatamansi Powder ( Nardostachys Jatamansi )
  • Part Used



    Powder: 1-3 g

    Side Effects

    • It is avoided in cases of hypersensitivity.
    • An overdose of jatamansi causes nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, and stomach pain, and may also cause urinary difficulties.

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