Botanical name: Asparagus racemosus
Other names: Wild Asparagus
Also known as Wild Asparagus, Shatavari is an Ayurvedic herb that grows in tropical areas of Asia, India, Australia, and Africa. It is considered an adaptogen, helping the body to come back into balance, and mitigating the effects of stress.
It is a primary Ayurvedic tonic for women, used traditionally to support female reproductive health through all stages of life – from menarche to menopause, conception to postpartum. It is used to restore and balance hormones, increase libido, fight fatigue, assist PMS and menopausal symptoms and support healthy production of breast milk. Its name roughly translates to ‘she who has 100 husbands’, now that’s saying something!
As a diuretic, anti-inflammatory and antispasmodic, it can assist with the bloating and cramping associated with PMS, and can regulate mood swings as well.
It is also used to strengthen the immune system, improve digestive health, as a soothing tonic for the respiratory system and to reduce anxiety and depression.
Its flavour is bittersweet, and it is recommended to take the herb in a form that you can appreciate this flavour, in order to benefit from its full effects. This is because the bitter flavour signals the digestive system & liver to start working.
Shatavari is not only for women. Men can benefit from its adaptogenic & tonic effects. It also helps with impotence and may increase libido.
Preparation: 1 tsp per cup, simmer for 10 minutes. Drink 2-3 times daily.
References: Deni Brown (2002), New Encyclopedia of Herbs & Their Uses, pp. 135-36.
Shatavari Common Uses
Shatavari is a diuretic, so avoid if you are taking other diuretics. Avoid during pregnancy. Consult your doctor if you have heart disease or kidney disorders.