Updated: May 25
Shilajit is a natural substance found mainly in the Himalayan Mountains between India and Nepal. It is rich in fulvic acid and is formed by decomposition of organic (plant) materials through decades. Shilajit, a sticky tar-like substance with color ranging from dark brown to black, comes from Sanskrit word “Shilajatu” meaning “rock-tar”. It is extensively used in Ayurveda, a traditional Indian system of medicine. Benefits of shilajit are in-numerous and will be discussed soon.
Shilajit can have a positive effect on our immune system due to the presence of trace minerals. Most of the minerals present in Shilajit are anti-oxidant. Fulvic acid acts as a powerful antioxidant against stress and other negative factors; it reduces damage due to free radicals in our body produced by constant negative feelings and tensions. Copper along with Vitamin E may prevent or delay cell damage caused by oxidation while magnesium allows to fight free-radical damage.
Shilajit contains zinc and selenium, which are said to improve sexual performance. The minerals support vigor keeps sperm healthy and regulates sex drive. Magnesium might prevent premature ejaculation, as it helps with the production of sex hormones, androgen, and estrogen. Other minerals help with blood flow which is very important for a healthy erection, blood pressure, and vascular health.
Hair & Skin
Shilajit contains copper, a mineral believed to help hair growth and improve its natural pigmentation. Copper and silicon, contained in Shilajit, helps in developing collagen which makes skin healthy and reduces wrinkles. Manganese helps with anti-aging by improving the flexibility of the skin while minerals likes selenium and zinc helps protect the skin from ultraviolet (UV) radiation.
Anti-Inflammation & Healthy Bones
If your body suffers from un-ending inflammation problem, it might be due to deficiency of magnesium. Shilajit, rich in magnesium, might act as an anti-inflammatory. Other minerals like Nickel, Calcium and Strontium are very well known to be associated with developing strong bones and joints. People, mostly in Asia, suffering from arthritis often mix Shilajit with turmeric to increase its effectiveness.
Shilajit, rich in iron and copper, helps deliver oxygen efficiently to various parts of our body. Most of us know that Vitamin E is associated with healthy skin but research also show that it helps reduce heart diseases as well. Potassium reduces harmful cholesterol while cobalt promotes production of red blood cells (RBC). Other minerals in Shilajit, like calcium, helps in regulating heartbeat. Overall, it can be said that minerals contained in Shilajit can help with keeping the cardiovascular system healthy.
Energy and Recovery
Shilajit, rich in iron, copper and nickel, enhances the oxygen carrying capacity of blood which helps in improving energy and mood. Fulvic acid allows to transport oxygen directly to our muscles, therefore, it was used by athletes in big events like Olympics as well as by USSR military. Some people also use it for post-workout recovery. Most of the minerals present in Shilajit, like phosphorus, are required by the powerhouse of our cell – ‘mitochondria’ to generate energy.
Immunity and Anti-depressant
Superoxide Dismutase (SOD), Glutathione and Catalase enzymes are vital part of our immunity. They act as an anti-oxidant, defending our body from harmful foreign particles as well as removing toxins from our body. Shilajit, rich in molybdenum, zinc and copper, helps in production of these enzymes. It also contains silver in extremely small amounts which serves as an anti-microbial. Shilajit contains a good amount of zinc which is a very good anti-depressant. Research have shown that people suffering from depression are most likely to have low content of zinc in their body. Moreover, zinc is a vital component required for proper functioning of enzymes.
Blood Sugar Control
Calcium and zinc are associated with reducing the risk of type 2 diabetes while magnesium plays a vital role in controlling blood glucose level. Chromium and calcium, found in Shilajit, are also known to control blood sugar. Although effects of zinc have not yet been thoroughly studied, a Harvard study found that high zinc level reduced risk of type 2 diabetes.
How to store Shilajit?
Best way to store Shilajit:
1. Shilajit should be stored inside the refrigerator or in other cool place.
2. Shilajit can also be stored at room temperature.
Who should not use Shilajit?
1. If you are pregnant or have a serious health condition, you should consult with your physician before taking shilajit. 2. If you have chronically high iron in the blood, please consult your physician. 3. If you have a very serious heart/ high blood pressure issue, please consult your physician. 4. It is not recommended for babies or toddlers.
Note: Please do not mix Shilajit with chlorinated water (tap water) as humic/fulvic acid contained in the Shilajit might react with Chlorine and produce a harmful substance. Use bottled/mineral water.
Disclaimer: Always consult your physician before consuming any supplement. This general information is not intended to diagnose any medical condition.