Bhringaraja/Kesharaja is the Sanskrit name of the herb used in preventing hair fall. The English name of Bhringaraja is False Daisy; botanical name is Eclipta Alba. It belongs to the family of Asteraceae. The other Sanskrit names are: Markava, Kesharanjana, Bharnagaraha, Bringa, Mahaneela, Ravipriya, Angaraka, Suryavarta, and Pitrupriya.

In (Hindi) it is known as Bhangra, Bhangaraiya, Mochkand

(Kannada)  Garagada Soppu, Garga, Kadigargu

(Telegu) Guntagal Agaraku, Galgara,

(Tamil) Kayanthakarra, Kaikeshi,

(Marathi) Bhringaraja,

(Gujarathi) Bhangaro, Kaluganthi

(Punjabi) Bhangra,

(Bengali) Kesuriya, Kesuti

(Malayalam) Kyonni,

(Oriya) Kesarda

Description of the plant

The tree is native to South East Asia and Southwest America. It is a creeper which grows well in moisture. It has a short flat or round stem. Its flowers are white in colour which grows on long stalks. The leaves are opposite and lance shaped. The root is cylindrical and greyish. It is found throughout India, China, Taiwan and Brazil. Depending upon the colour of the flower, there are three varieties of flower, namely, white, yellow and blue. It is considered as a weed, thus it is suitable for growth in any type of soil. The crop is propagated either through cuttings or seeds.

The chemical properties of Bhringaraja are:

The extract from Bhringaraja plant contains alkaloid called ecliptine. This extract is resinous in nature. The leaves of the plant are a rich source of protein. The chief constituents of Bhringaraja are coumestan derivatives like wedololactone[1.6%], demethylwedelolactone, desmethyl-wedelolactone-7glucoside and other constituents are ecliptal, ß-amyrin, luteolin-7-O-glucoside, hentriacontanol, heptacosanol, stigmasterol.

Puranic Reference

Use of Bhringaraja flowers is mentioned in Garuda Purana during the ten day ceremony performed after the death of an individual. Bhringaraja is mentioned in Varaha Mihira and the Brihat Samhita

Ayurvedic uses

The whole plant is used in medicinal preparation.  Bhringaraja is mentioned in both Charaka and Sushrutha Samhitas. It is known for its anticancer, antileprotic, analgesic, antioxidant, antimyotoxic, antihaemorrhagic, antihepatotoxic, antiviral, antibacterial, spasmogenic, antiseptic, anti-inflammatory, hypotensive and ovicidal properties. The fresh plant has pain relieving properties.

In ayurveda, the properties of Bhringaraja are classified as follows:

Rasa (Taste): Bitter, Pungent, Sweet

Virya: Cooling

Vipaka (Post Digestive Effect): Pungent

Effects: It is effective in balancing both the Kapha, and Vatha doshas.

Bhringaraja has a cooling effect on the mind. Thus it is used to reduce agitation or turbulence of the mind. It is also used as a tonic for circulatory and digestive system. Bhringaraja is mainly effective in treating hair fall and liver cirrhosis. The root has emetic, (an agent that induces vomiting), and purgative (cleansing of the bowels) properties.

Leaves:  Leaves act as antiseptic and anti inflammatory agents.  A paste of the leaves applied on the wound hastens its healing. Regular consumption of the extract of the leaves is useful in treating ulcers and prevents inflammation of the digestive system. The juice of the leaves is also used as a tonic for treating liver, and kidney disorders. Regular intake of 3 gms of Bhringaraja powder with water rejuvenates hair, teeth, bones, eyesight, hearing and memory. It is also effective in treating cold, flu, fever, debility, dropsy and anaemia.

Hair care: Bhringaraja is considered as a rasayana (rejuvenator) in Ayurveda. It is a natural conditioner for hair. Regular use of Bhringaraja arrests hair fall and improves the overall hair growth. Equal portions of Bhringaraja powder, amla, tulsi and neem powder should be made into a paste and applied on hair. Rinse hair after 30 minutes. It helps to rejuvenate the hair and scalp.

Liver diseases: The extract of the leaves is used in treating liver cirrhosis and rejuvenating the liver function.

Cracked heels: A paste of the leaves applied on cracked heals regularly gives fast relief to cracked heels.

Insect bites: A paste of the leaves applied on the skin provides relief from poisonous insect bites/stings.

Women diseases: A mixture of the leaves or powder mixed with honey or water is effective in treating bleeding, haemoptysis, haematuria.

Elephantiasis: The paste of the leaves mixed with sesame oil is effective in treating elephantiasis.

Cough: Intake of a teaspoon of the powder with honey is an antidote for cough and other respiratory disorders.

Intestinal worms: A mixture of Bhringaraja leaves along with castor oil and honey is effective in treating intestinal worms especially in children.

Urine infection: A mixture of Bhringaraja powder with salt is effective in relieving the burning sensation while passing urine.

Jaundice: A mixture of equal parts of Bhringaraja powder, rock salt and black pepper powder is used in treating jaundice. One teaspoon should be taken twice a day for better results.

Skin disorders: A mixture of Bhringaraja taken along with water is effective for treating various skin ailments. Alternately a paste of Bhringaraja can be applied on the skin to clear the scars, wounds etc. Regular intake of Bhringaraja improves the skin tone and complexion.

Bhringaraja acts as an excellent blood purifier.

Headache: Bhringaraja powder mixed with any oil should be applied on the forehead or on the head gives relief from headache.

Swollen glands: A paste of Bhringaraja powder mixed with palm oil and applied on swollen glands provides relief.

Enlarged spleen:  A mixture of the root powder with water is effective in treating spleen enlargement and hepatitis.

Miscarriage: Bhringaraja powder is used to prevent miscarriage. The leaves are effective in reducing uterine bleeding. The powder is used to reduce post delivery uterine pain.

Low Cholesterol: Regular consumption of Bhringaraja powder, along with water is effective in reducing the cholesterol levels in the body.

Piles: Fumigation with Bhringaraja gives relief in case of piles.

Eye and ear infections: Few drops of the extract of the leaves is used to treat eye and ear infections.


Bhringaraja is one of the ten herbs of the group known as Dashapushpam (ten flowers). Each of the ten flowers are known for its effectiveness in treating intestinal worms, cough, asthma and other respiratory disorders, night blindness, eye diseases, headache and hair growth.

The flowers of Bhringaraja are used in the worship of Lord Narasimha during the Narasimha Jayanti in some parts of Tamil Nadu.

Other uses: The leaves also have culinary uses. It is used in the preparation of chutneys.