Gomutra or gaumutra (Sanskrit: गोमूत्र gomūtra; cow urine) is urine from cows used for therapeutic purposes in traditional Indian medicine, Ayurveda, and also for purification in Vaastu Shastra. Gomutra is also an important component of the mixture called Panchagavya, also used in Ayurveda. Urine of a pregnant cow is considered special; it is claimed to contain special hormones and minerals.
Claimed benefits and usage
In religious rituals
In Hinduism, cow urine has a special significance as a medicinal drink. Sprinkling of cow urine is said to have a spiritual cleansing effect as well. Cattle were a basic economic unit in ancient India, and cows are holy in Hinduism and their slaughter is restricted.
For pharmaceutical purposes
In Ayurveda, Gomutra is claimed to be helpful in the treatment of leprosy, abdominal colic pain,  bloating, and cancer. A mixture of gomutra, Triphala, and cow milk is used for the treatment of anaemia. It is also used in the treatment of fever by mixing it with black pepper, yoghurt, and ghee (ghrita). A mixture of gomutra, neem bark, vasaka bark, kurilo bark, kaner leaves is also used medicinally. A mixture of gomutra and dharuharidra is used for epilepsy. A study from Mandsaur has claimed that it may also benefit cancer patients.
In 2002, a US patent was issued to a group of Indian scientists of the Council of Scientific and Industrial Research for an antibiotic and cow urine distillate mixture which was claimed to be serving as a bioenhancer, enhancing anti-microbial activity of antibiotic and antifungal agents.
In 2010, the Go-vigyan Anusandhan Kendra in Deolapar funded by Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh and the National Environmental Engineering Research Institute were granted a US patent for a gomutra-based drug which was claimed to prevent oxidative damage to DNA.
Cow urine is also used in Myanmar and Nigeria as a folk medicine. In Nigeria, a concoction of leaves of tobacco, garlic and lemon basil juice, rock salt and cow urine is used to treat convulsions in children. This has resulted in the death of several children from respiratory depression.
A recent movement advocates the regular drinking of gomutra for its alleged health benefits, and it is marketed as a health drink. In 2009, Kanpur Gaushala Society in Kanpur released Goloka Pay, a cold drink containing 5% distilled cow urine, in two flavours, orange and lemon. It also contained herbs such as tulsi, shankhpushpi and brahmi. Also in 2009, the Cow Protection Department of Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh in Haridwar announced plans to release a similar product as an alternative to cola drinks.
As a floor cleaner
A floor-cleaning fluid called Gaunyle is marketed by an organisation called Holy Cow Foundation. Maneka Gandhi, Women and Child Development Minister, has proposed that Gaunyle be used instead of Phenyl in government offices. In May 2015, Rajendra Singh Rathore, Medical and Health Minister of Rajasthan, inaugurated a ₹40 million (US$580,000) cow-urine refinery in Jalore. The refinery was set up by Parthvimeda Gau Pharma Pvt. Ltd. which produces a floor cleaner called Gocleaner.
In organic farming
Gomutra is used as a manure for production of rice. Jeevamrutha is a fertilizer made from a mixture of cow urine, cow dung, jaggery, pulse flour and rhizosphere soil. A mixture of gomutra, custard apple leaves and neem leaves after boiling is said to serve as a biopesticide.
In 2012, the College of Veterinary and Animal Sciences in Wayanad district began selling packaged gomutra and Panchagavya. The products were primarily directed towards organic farming with claims that it would reduce usage of chemical fertilizers and pesticides. Gomutra is supposed to increase plant resistance and Panchagavya is supposed to increase growth of soil bacteria and improve fertility. The head of the institute, Joseph Mathew, said that quality was assured by collecting the first urine of the day from the cows, but that it was not usable for medicinal purposes.
A 1975 study on mice found that Jersey cow urine causes death in high doses. A similar 1976 study on dogs showed that repeated administration of Jersey cow urine concoction as used in Nigerian folk medicine, resulted in hypotension and tachypnea, and also death. A 2001 study found prions in detectable amounts in the urine of Jersey cows suffering from bovine spongiform encephalopathy.
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