Chyavanprash (also spelled chyavanaprasha, chyavanaprash, chyavanaprasam, chamanprash and chyawanaprash) is a cooked mixture of sugar, honey, ghee, Indian gooseberry (amla) jam, sesame oil, berries and various herbs and spices. It is prepared as per the instructions suggested in Ayurvedic texts. Chyavanprash is widely sold and consumed in India as a dietary supplement.
Chyavanprash is an ancient formulation and product. Various ancient Indian texts like Mahabharata, Puranas etc., relate that Ashwini Kumar brothers, the twins, who were Raja Vaidya (Royal Physicians) to Devas during Vedic times, first prepared this formulation for Chyavana Rishi at his Ashram on Dhosi Hill near Narnaul, Haryana, India, hence the name Chyavanprash. The first historically documented formula for chyavanprash appears in the Charaka Samhita, the ancient Ayurvedic treatise from the early first millennium BCE.
Taste and appearance
Chyavanaprash tastes sweet and sour at the same time. The taste is dominated by the flavors of honey, ghee (clarified butter) and amla, and the smell by ghee and other spices including sandalwood, cinnamon and cardamom.
Chyavanaprash is usually consumed directly. It can also be consumed along with warm water.
The recipe of chyavanprash is mentioned in manuscripts written for ayurvedic method of treatment viz. Ashtangahridayam, Charakasamhita, Sangandharasamhita. Amla is a primary ingredient of Chyavanaprash which makes it rich in Vitamin C (445 mg/100g). The number of herbs used may vary from 25 to 80 but the main ingredient of all Chyavanprash is amla. Other chief ingredients are:
- ashwagandha (Withania Somnifera or Winter cherry)
- asparagus (Asparagus racemosa)
- bamboo manna
- blue Egyptian water lily (Makhana)
- chebulic myrobalan
- Chinese cinnamon
- cinnamon bark
- Indian rose chestnut
- country mallow
- feather foil plant (Phyllanthus niruri or Bhumiamalaki)
- Giant potato (Ipomoea mauritiana or Kiribadu Ala)
- Giloy (Guduchi) (Tinospora cordifolia)
- Indian kudzu
- Irish root
- Long pepper (Piper longum)
- Malabar nut (Seed of Adhatoda vasica)
- Nut grass
- Potassium sorbate
- Round zedoary
- sesame oil
- Spreading hogweed (Boerhavia diffusa)
- Tiger's claw or Ice plant (Erythrina variegata)
- Wild black gram
- Wild green gram
The market size of chyavanprash in 2010 was Indian Rs 4 billion (about $80 million USD). Chyavanprash in India is marketed through film stars and sports persons such as Amitabh Bachchan, Ramdev Baba, Shahrukh Khan, Ravi Kishan, Virendra Sehwag, and Mahendra Singh Dhoni.
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- Johnston, Robert (2004). The politics of healing : histories of alternative medicine in twentieth-century North America. New York: Routledge. p. 226. ISBN 0-415-93338-2.
- Economic Times SRK, Dhoni, Ravi Kishan do wonders for chyawanprash