Safed Musli (Chlorophytum borivilianum)

Latin name: Chlorophytum borivilianum

Common names: Haqaqule in Arabic, Swetha Musli in Sanskrit and Safed Musli in Hindi

Safed Musli is native to the tropical wet forests of the Indian subcontinent. Its tubers are used medicinally as a sex tonic. The number of tubers varies from plant to plant, 5 to 30 tubers are observed per plant. As safed means white in Hindi language, the name of the plant comes from the white color of its tubers. The Medicinal Plants Board of India has recognized Safed Musli as the sixth important herb to be protected and promoted. It contains 27 alkaloids, steroidal saponin, spirostanol glycosides, furastanol glycosides-polysaccharides, carbohydrates, proteins, minerals and vitamins. The presence of glycosidal alkaloids makes it an ideal aphrodisiac. In India Safed Musli is called divine herb for its unique aphrodisiac properties.

The herb is also the main ingredient in the preparation of many Ayurvedic formulations. Besides its extensive use in the Ayurvedic System of Medicine, Safed Musli is also gaining importance as a vitalizer and tonic. The Indian system of medicine Ayurveda, conceptualizes a category of drug activity known as Rasayana. The word Rasayana is derived from words ‘Rasa’ meaning elixir and ‘Ayana’ meaning house. The word defines the property of the plant that helps to rejuvenate the system, i.e. adaptogenic activity. In herbal medicine adaptogen is a natural substance considered to help the body adapt to stress.Thus, Safed Musli prevents diseases and delays the aging process.

It is scientifically proven that Safed Musli is useful in oligospermia which refers to semen with a low sperm concentration. The plant has significant effect in increasing semen volume and total sperm count. Clinical trials on humans and the study on safety parameters of Safed Musli conducted at the Indian Institute of Chemical Technology (IICT) reported positive results on the aphrodisiac parameters of the herb, such as increased sexual desire, improved erectile function, increased sperm mobility and sperm count, and increased frequency of coitus. These encouraging results has led to the production of aphrodisiac supplements containing Safed Musli. Some of these products are Vita-Ex (Gold), Kama Raja for men and Kama Rani for women.

According to another recent study on the effects of Chlorophytum borivilianum on sexual behavior and sperm count in male rats, designed to evaluate the aphrodisiac and spermatogenic potential of the aqueous extract of dried roots of Safed Musli, the plant has a marked aphrodisiac action, increases libido, sexual vigor, and sexual arousal. These results have proven that the root can be useful in the treatment of certain forms of sexual inadequacies, such as premature ejaculation and oligospermia. The observed effects appear to be attributable to the testosterone like effects of the extract which provides scientific evidence as support to the folkloric claims that the plant is an aphrodisiac.

References: Mike’s Foodienarium