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Giloy Juice: Study claims Giloy use causes liver damage, Ministry of Ayush calls it misleading

Giloy Juice is used extensively by people during the pandemic. Well known for its immunity building properties, the herb Tinospora Cordifolia (TC), commonly known as ‘Giloy’ or ‘Guduchi recently gained much prominence. However, a study published in peer reviewed journal of the Indian National Association for the Study of the Liver. Has stated that the use of Giloy juice causes live damage. Ministry of Ayush, however, has countered the claims, calling out the ‘gaps’ in the study. Also Read: Beetroot Juice helps in Nourishing Skin and also Stimulates Healthy Ageing(Opens in a new browser tab)

Citing the study, Ministry of Ayush in its official release has stated that the study is misleading as it ‘failed in placing all needful details of the cases in a systematic format’. Furthermore, the ministry adds that ‘Publications based on incomplete information will open the door for misinformation and defame the age-old practices of Ayurveda.’ Also read: Diet plan for COVID19 and post COVID patients(Opens in a new browser tab)

What is Giloy?

Giloy or Guduchi is a well known and widely used herb available in India. An ancient herb, it is commonly known for its immunity-boosting properties as well as its ability to fight various pathogens. For its traditional benefits, the herb is also called ‘Amrita’ or elixir. Herd is widely used in Ayurvedic medicine and even in various traditional home remedies popular in India.

The herb, though in use for over 3000 years now, gained prominence during the past two years after the pandemic struck the country. Known for its immunity boosting properties, the herb has found place in most of the households in the country.

Giloy Use Causes Live Damage – What the study claims

Study published in the Journal of Clinical and Experimental Hepatology, a peer-reviewed journal of the Indian National Association for the Study of the Liver. This study states that 6 patients in Mumbai have suffered frm liver damage after consuming the herb Tinospora Cordifolia (TC) or ‘Giloy’/ ‘Guduchi’. The study has been peer reviewed by the Indian National Association for the Study of the Live.

Ministry of Ayush call report misleading, point out gaps in study

Soon after the publication of the report, the Ministry of Ayush has issued a statement, calling the report irresponsible and misleading. The official release calls out certain discrepancies in the study and have pointed out that the due process was not followed by the authors of the paper.

While stating that the TC’s efficacy in managing various disorders has stood the time, the ministry states that the ‘authors of the study have not analysed the contents of the herb that was consumed by the patients’.

In the official release, MoA states that ‘It becomes the responsibility of the authors to ascertain that the herb consumed by the patients is TC and not any other herb. To build upon the soundness, the authors would have taken the opinion of a botanist or would have consulted an Ayurveda expert.’

They have also conceded that a similar looking herb – TinosporoCrispa might have a negative impact on liver. Apart from this, MoA also points out that the study fails to report the dosage consumed by the patients, any other medicines consumed by the patients or the past or present medical records of the patient.

Furthermore, the MoA report also points out that some 169 studies are available in the public domain that corroborate the scientific evidence on ‘medical applications of TC or Giloy as protective to live, nerves, etc. Also, it states that ‘No adverse event is noted in any clinical practice by pharmacovigilance or in any clinical study’.

Giloy Juice: Benefits, dosage and how to consume

Seconding the statement issued by the MoA, Dr.Smita Naram, Co-Founder of Ayushakti explains that Giloy has multiple health benefits. Countering the claims made in the study, she points out that Giloy – contrary to the claims made, has been proved to be an immunomodulator. In other words, the herb would boost an ailing immune system and would also ‘calm down’ a hyperactive immune system. In effect – the herb can never cause or create a hyperactive immune response, which may be linked to organ damage.

Talking about correct dosage, Dr. Naram states that consumption of about 120 gm of Giloy per day cannot cause live damage or any such side effect. She also says that there are research based evidence that have been published by the scientific community worldwide which has proven the use of the herb in protecting liver and ever reversing liver damage.

On the side of caution, however, Dr. Naram points out that it is important to seek advise of experts before consuming. With the pandemic, the herbs have been selling like hot-cakes.

She says that people should not pick up Giloy or consume anything labeled Giloy Juice from an unknown place. “There are various types of Giloy herbs, which need to be formulated and consumed in different manners. It’s important to intake medicines with alkaloids and active constituents making them of the right quality and should not be taken without expert guidance as one may not know if it’s the real herb, ” Dr.Smita said while speaking to a publication.

Disclaimer: Tips and suggestions mentioned in the article are for general information purpose only and should not be construed as professional medical advice. Always consult your doctor or a dietician before starting any fitness programme or making any changes to your diet.

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