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Sahadevi – Vernonia cinerea

Sahadevi – Vernonia cinerea is a herb mentioned in the ayurvedic pharmacopoeia for the treatment of fever, localized swelling, wounds, renal calculi, skin diseases and elephantiasis. It is called Purple feabane in English. 

Latin Name- Vernonia cinerealess
Family- Compositae

Classical Categorization

Bhavaprakasha- Guduchyadi varga
Raja Nighantu- Shatahvadi varga
Shodala Nighantu- Lakshmanadi varga

Scientific Classification

Kingdom – Plantae
Order – Asterales
Family – Asteraceae
Tribe – Vernonieae
Genus – Vernonia
Morphology – Sahadevi is a small shrub growing found all over India in the temperate climate, growing to a height of 0.5 feet to 3 feet. The leaves are having hairy surface beneath and the flowers are purple or pink colored blooming in the rainy season.


Rasa (Taste) – Tikta (Bitter)
Guna (Qualities) – Laghu (Light for digestion), Ruksha (Dry in nature)
Vipaka –  Katu (Undergoes Pungent taste after digestion)
Veerya (Potency) – Ushna (Hot)
Karma (Actions) – Kaphavata shamaka (reduces vitiated kapha and vata dosha)
Part Used – Root
Types – Shweta (White), Neela (Blue) – As per Raja Nighantu



Fresh juice- 10 to 20 ml
Decoction of root- 50 to 75 ml


  • The paste of the leaves and stem is prepared and applied over the wounds and localized swelling as treatment.
  • To treat renal calculi and burning micturition, practitioners administer a 40-50 ml decoction prepared from the root and stem of Vernonia cineria.
  • The root and stem of Sahadevi are used to make a cold infusion. This infusion is then given in 50-60 ml doses to treat fevers caused by indigestion.
  • To treat insomnia, a paste made from the root of Sahadevi is applied directly to the scalp.
  • The root and leaves of Sahadevi, when boiled or steeped in cold water, create a decoction or infusion given in 50ml doses to treat skin diseases and purify the blood.
  • A decoction of root (30-40 ml) is administered to treat intestinal worms.
  • The cold infusion made from Sahadevi leaves and root effectively treats constipation with a dosage of 50-60 ml.
  • Usage of Sahadevi in fever – Charaka suggests tying the root of this herb to the head to reduce fever, likely due to its ability to accumulate nickel, zinc, copper, and manganese.
  • Indicated in –
    • Asrapitta – Bleeding disorders such as nasal bleeding, heavy periods, etc
    • Shukrakara – Shukrala – improves sperm and semen quantity and quality
    • Kshata – injury, bleeding
    • Vishamajwara – Intermittent fever
    • Sidhma Kushta – skin disease\

Latest Research

Cyto protective effect:  Vernonia cineria extract effectively counters nicotine toxicity in human umbilical vein endothelial cells.

Anti- oxidant effect: This study actively investigated the ethanolic extract of Vernonia cinerea leaves for its antioxidant and hepatoprotective effects in male Wistar strain albino rats. To achieve this, we assessed the extract’s impact on the liver by measuring the activities of vital antioxidant enzymes like superoxide dismutase (SOD), catalase (CAT), glutathione reductase (GR), and glutathione S-transferase (GST), along with the levels of reduced glutathione (GSH), in rats intoxicated with CCl4.

When compared to CCl4 treated group of rats, the extract significantly (p<0.05) increased the levels of SOD, CAT, GR, GSH, and GST. The extract also showed antioxidant effects by significantly decreasing (p<0.05) on FeCl2-Ascorbate induced lipid peroxidation in rat liver homogenate.

Anti- diarrheal activity: To investigate the anti-diarrheal activity of Vernonia cinerea, this study employed cold extraction methods to collect plant extracts. The time of onset of first wet feces increased significantly and dose dependently by the extract. The researchers gave Sahadevi extract and pregabalin to rats after sciatic nerve surgery. The surgery caused major changes in behavior, biochemistry, and tissue samples, compared to a control group. The Sahadevi extract and pregabalin helped to improve these changes.

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