Ayurveda Health Benefits and Uses of Musta or Cyperus Rotundus

Nagarmotha or musta is used in IBS, Psoriasis, Eczema, acne, pimple and to enhance quality of breast milk. It is effective in fever, cough, cold and diarrhoea

Table of content

About musta or Cyperus rotundus

Musta in Ayurveda

Ayurveda Medicinal Properties of Musta.

Health Benefits of Cyperus Rotundus or Musta According to Ayurveda

Health Benefits of Cyperus esculentus or JalaMusta According to Ayurveda

Home Remedies with Nagarmotha

About musta or Cyperus rotundus

Musta or Cyperus rotundus is also known as java grass, nut grass and coco grass. It belongs to family of CYPERACEAE. It is a herb which grows to a height of 4.5 ft height. Its roots are tubers and resemble nuts. Usually the tubers are used for medicinal purpose. This grass is largely found in Africa, South Asia and Central Europe.

This herb is administered to improve milk secretion in lactating mothers, relieve burning sensation in cystitis and UTI, reduce thirst and body temperature in fever. Nut Grass is also recommended in treatment of IBS (irritable bowel syndrome), herpes, diarrhoea and dyspepsia.

Synonyms of musta in India

It is called by different names in local languages of India.

  1. Musta is Motha or nagarmotha in Hindi,
  2.  Nut grass, Purple nutsedge, Nutsedge, Java Grass, Coco grass,in English,
  3. Tunge Gadde in kannada,
  4. Tunga Mustalu, in telagu
  5. Muthakach or korai kilangu in tamil
  6. Muthanga in malayalam

Chemical Composition of Cyperus rotundus:

Major bio molecules of this plant, which are reasons for its medicinal properties are cyperene, humulen, selinene, zierone, campholenic aldehyde, longiverbenone, copaene, limonene etc.

Musta in Ayurveda

Texts of Ayurveda refer to this herb with different names. Like

  • Krodeshta- the herb which is liked by pigs.,
  • Hima- It cools body,
  • Varida, Abda, Ambhoda, Ambudhara, Jalada, Jalavaha – One which grows in wet lands.
  • Sugandhi – A herb with good fragrance
  • Gangeyi, Gangeya – The one which grows in the holy banks of river Ganga
  • Granthila –The one which has tubers like granthi or nodes.
  • Mustakam- grows in form of bushes
  • Kuruvinda- It is widely available in Kuru Pradesh
  • Prachya- Usually grows in eastern regions

Types of Musta (Based on texts of Ayurveda)

Various texts of Ayurveda mention the following types of this herb.

  1. Musta (Nagaramusta) – Cyperus scariosus
  2. Bhadra Musta – Cyperus rotundus
  3. Kshudra Musta ( kasheruka ) – Sciprus grossus – Water chestnut
  4. Jala Musta- Cyperus esculentus (Earth almond) – grows in moist places

Ayurveda Medicinal Properties of Musta.

Texts of Ayurveda explain benefits of this herb as follows.

Ayurveda Health Benefits and Uses of Musta or Cyperus Rotundus
This herb is bitter (tikta rasa), pungent (Katu rasa) and astringent (kashaya rasa) to taste. It is light to digest (laghu ) and dries up body tissues (Rooksha). It gets spicey taste after digestion (vipaka). It acts as body coolant (sheeta veerya). It balances kapha dosha and pitta Dosha.

Health Benefits of Cyperus Rotundus or Musta According to Ayurveda

Ayurveda acharyas recommend musta in treatment of various diseases. Here is the list of diseases and how nagarmotha can be used.

In IBS and Diarrhoea

According to Charakacharya this herb is superior to all other herbs which is used for IBS, Diarrhoea and dysentery. This herb with its Grahi (absorbent) property helps to reduce frequency of stools in IBS and Diarrhoea. Apart from this it also helps to boost agni ( body fire or strength of disgestion), kindle appetite (deepana), improve digestion (pachana) , and ease digestive process in these conditions. This also helps to relieve fever associated with diarrhoea. It is very common to experience acidity or gastritis in these conditions. Musta helps to relieve these symptoms too.

In fever

This herb is highly recommended in fever. It acts as a body coolant and reduces fever (jwarahara). Musta relieves thirst in fever (trushnahara).

In Indigestion

Nagarmotha improves taste (aruchihara) and relieves indigestion by improving strength of digestion

Improves skin health

This grass helps to detoxify blood (raktajit) and improve skin complexion and glow. Its ayurvedic herbal face pack is very beneficial in acne, pimple, scars and marks.

Acts as antimicrobial

This herb is praised as “jantughna and krumivinashini”, which means it helps to eliminate parasites of digestive system and also cleanses the wounds which are infected.

Health Benefits of Cyperus esculentus or JalaMusta According to Ayurveda

  1. Jalamusta normalises vata dosha (vatahara) is usually recommended for skin ailments like acne, pimple, oily skin, pigments and dark circles.
  2. It is praised as “kantida” which means a herb which improves skin glow, texture and complexion.
  3. It reduces itching (kanduhara) and is very useful in skin diseases (kushtaghna).
  4. It detoxifies body (vishahara) and can also be used as best ayurvedic detox for skin.
  5. This herb is used as a substitute for karpura (camphor).
  6. Ayurveda acharyas eulogise this herb as “Medhya” which implies that it boosts memory and concentration. Usually this herb is used along with shankhpushpi in takradhara treatment.
  7. Jalamusta is highly recommended in herpes. This can be used as internal medicine and external application for genital herpes and oral herpes. This medicinal property is known as “visarpahara”.

Home Remedies with Nagarmotha

Make your clothes smell fresh

Keep few tubers between clothes. It acts as a deodorant.

When stomach grumbles

Mix half tea spoon of musta powder with 1 tea spoon of honey to relieve gas in stomach and improve taste.

In Acidity and Gastritis

Boil 1 tablespoon of Cyperus Rotundus tuber powder in 2 cups of water, till the water reduces to one cup. Filter this decoction and add 3 grams of ginger powder to this. Consume this when you have acidity.

To eliminate intestinal parasites.

Papaya is known for its anti-parasitic properties. Seeds of papaya and tubers of musta must be mixed in equal quantities and powdered. Administration of this powder helps to eliminate pin worms.

For improving quality of breast milk

Sometimes due to dosha imbalance mother’s milk may get vitiated and trouble baby’s digestion. For this the tuber of musta is blended with juice of banana plant and fed to mother. This improves quality of breast milk.

The decoction of musta also prevents swelling of breast and clogging of milk ducts.

Use this as a deodorant

Fine powder of this tuber can be applied on body or on wounds to keep them dry and clean.

For IBS or (Irritable Bowel Syndrome)

Mix a pinch of musta powder with a glass of buttermilk and drink it three times daily. This controls repeated bowel movement.

Summer drink

Musta tea or infusion helps to get rid of common cold, cough, fever and loose motion

In Skin problems

Fine powder of nagarmotha mixed with vidanga, lodhra , turmeric etc can be dusted on affected skin area in psoriasis, dry eczema etc. Before dusting the affected area must be massaged with sesame oil.

Consult Dr.Savitha Suri for ayurvedic remedies. Email [email protected] . WhatsApp + 91 6360108663

Author : Dr. Savitha Suri Consultant Ayurvedic Physician

Reference: Studies on the activity of Cyperus rotundus Linn. tubers against infectious diarrhea

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