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Daruharidra: Uses, Benefits & How To Use

By Dr Ashok Pal +2 more


Daruharidra, Daru Haldi, Indian barberry, Tree turmeric, and Chitra are some common names for Berberis aristata. Daruhidra belongs to the Berberidaceae family and is a spiny, hard, and yellowish herb. It is primarily seen in the sub-Himalayan region, the Nilgiri hills in southern India, and the hilly portions of Nepal between the altitude 2000-3500 metres. Because of its therapeutic value, it is regarded as one of the most significant herbal plants in Ayurveda, Siddha, and Unani medicine. The official source of the medication are the plant’s roots.1

Almost every portion of this plant has considerable medical significance according to traditional Indian and Chinese medicinal traditions. Many traditional ayurvedic remedies use its roots, such as Darvyadi kvatha, Rasaut, Darvyadi leha, Rasanjana, Dasanga lepa, Darvyadi taila, and others; bark, rhizomes, stem, leaves, and fruits. Pharmaceuticals, nutraceuticals, and cosmeceutical products use the Berberis aristata plant extracts. The plant includes several significant phytochemicals including proto-berberine, isoquinoline, bisbenzyl-isoquinoline, and other bioactive constituents like flavonoids and phenolic acids.2

daurharidra ayurvedic herb

Other phytochemicals that have been identified from the flowers of B. aristata include flavonoids like quercetin, e-caffeic acid, chlorogenic acid, meratin, and rutin.3 

Did You know?

Therapeutic Uses of Daruharidra: 

B. aristata may be used a medicinal agent owing to its multiple therapeutic properties as follows:  

  • stomachic  
  • bitter tonic  
  • laxative  
  • diaphoretic (inducing perspiration) 
  • antiseptic  
  • antipyretic  (reduce fever)
  • anti-diabetic  
  • antiulcerogenic 
  • anti-dysenteric 
  • anti-diarrhoeal 

The plant is used in skin diseases, ophthalmic disorders, in menorrhagia, as astringent, antiperiodic jaundice, for treatment of wounds, liver problems, and ear problems.4 

  • Fresh berries are antiscorbic and laxative and can help with sores, piles, and eye disorders, especially conjunctivitis.4  
  • Its decoction is used to cure inflamed gums and toothaches. 4 
  • Root bark decoction treats malarial fever, ophthalmic diseases, rheumatism, menorrhagia, piles, blood coagulation, and skin diseases like boils. 4 
  • The fruits are employed in the treatment of leucorrhoea, toothache, gum swelling, and piles.4 

Daruharidra may be used as an anti-venom for snakebite! I recently read an article that says the extracts of Daruharidra may be used to help people affected by snake bites.

Dr. Siddharth Gupta, MD

Benefits of Daruharidra: 

Benefits of Daruharidra for Liver: 

  • Hepjaun syrup, a polyherbal formulation containing daruharidra, has a strong liver protective effect and may be helpful in treating liver disorders.
  • The extract of fruits has liver-protecting properties by inhibiting microsomal drug metabolising enzymes.
  • The active ingredient berberine in daruharidra inhibits potassium and calcium currents in animal liver cells and may be concerned with liver protection.2 
  • By examining experimental amoebic liver abscess in animal models, it was discovered that a formulation containing daruharidra lowered the rate of infection with hepatic amoebiasis, a parasitic liver infection.2 
  • The plant was found to reduce the acetaminophen-induced rise in serum alkaline phosphatase, serum glutamic oxaloacetic transaminase, and serum glutamic pyruvic transaminase.
  • These are liver enzymes that rise in liver diseases.2 

Benefits of Daruharidra for Platelets: 

  • An extract of the root of daruharidra was tested on animal models platelets.
  • It was found to suppress platelet-activating factor-induced platelet aggregation.
  • The plant’s active ingredient berberine prevents platelet aggregation by interfering with collagen-mediated adhesion.
  • This prevents the clumping together of platelets which causes the formation of a thrombus that can block the blood vessels of the heart and lungs.2 

Benefits of Daruharidra for Diabetes: 

  • In diabetic animal models, the extract of daruharidra demonstrated anti-diabetic action.
  • It was also seen that daruharidra root extract has a considerable anti-hyperglycemic and antioxidant potential, maintaining glucose homeostasis by reducing the formation of glucose and oxidative stress.  
  • Berberine acts as an anti-diabetic agent by mimicking insulin, improving insulin action, reducing insulin resistance, and acting on incretins by promoting GLP-1 secretion and modulating its release, according to studies.2
  • Together all these help in managing diabetes better. 

Benefits of Daruharidra for Diarrhoea: 

  • Berberine, the active ingredient in daruhudra, inhibits Vibrio cholerae and Escherichia coli enterotoxins in the intestine, making it useful in treating acute diarrhoea.
  • Berberine lengthened the latent period and reduced the incidence and severity of diarrhoea in animal models.2 

Benefits of Daruharidra for Cancer: 

  • Extract of daruharidra has been shown to inhibit colon cancer cells.
  • Berberine, the active plant alkaloid, has been studied to treat chemically induced cancer since it significantly suppresses 20-methylcholanthrene or N-nitrosodiethylamine-induced carcinogenesis.
  • Nuclear factor-B activity in PC-3 cells is inhibited by the butanolic fraction containing berberine, which may be useful to treat prostate cancer.2 

Benefits of Daruharidra for Heart: 

  • Daruharidra fruit extract has a positive inotropic effect in isolated heart tissues.
  • When the biochemical investigation on daruharidra was conducted on healthy rabbits, it demonstrated a significant reduction in blood cholesterol, triglycerides, and low-density lipoprotein levels, as well as an increase in thrombin and fibrinogen time.
  • All of these can aid improvement in heart health in the long run.2 

Benefits of Daruharidra for Infections: 

  • Berberine extracts and decoctions have exhibited antimicrobial efficacy against bacteria, fungus, viruses, helminths, chlamydia, and protozoans, among other microorganisms.
  • Staphylococcus aureus, Pseudomonas aeruginosa, and Corynebacterium species were resistant to the herbal gel formulation, containing daruharidra extract.
  • As a result, this combination may be an effective treatment for skin infections.2  
  • Daruharidra has also been discovered to have anti-Helicobacter pylori action, which is why it may be useful to treat ulcers and gastrointestinal diseases.2 

Benefits of Daruharidra for Eyes:  

  • Conjunctivitis was treated with formulations containing daruharidra, such as ‘Netrabindu,’ ‘M.D.H drops and capsules,’ and ‘Madhudarvyadi eye drops,’ and cataract problems were treated with an ayurvedic formulation including daruharidra plant.
  • Daruharidra is included in Ayurvedic preparations such as Anjana’s Elanir kujambu.
  • Because of its antimicrobial and antibacterial properties, it is an effective treatment for eye illnesses and infections.2 

Benefits of Daruharidra for Brain: 

  • Berberine modulates brain chemicals like norepinephrine, serotonin, and dopamine and has an antidepressant-like effect.
  • According to research, berberine is found to be helpful in a variety of central nervous system problems including Alzheimer’s disease, depression, schizophrenia, and anxiety.2 

Benefits of Daruharidra as an Antioxidant: 

  • The antioxidant activity of the daruharidra plant was investigated.
  • The experiment was carried out in diabetic rats under safety conditions.
  • It was discovered that the plant’s root extract decreased oxidative stress.1 

Benefits of Daruharidra for Piles: 

The extract of daruharidra is one of the main constituents of the anti-haemorrhoidal Pilex tablets, which treat bleeding piles.2 

Also Read: Worst Foods for Oedema: A Research-Backed Guide for Dietary Awareness

Benefits of Daruharidra for Inflammation: 

  • In animal models of uveitis, topical instillation of extracts of Curcuma longa and daruharidra demonstrated strong anti-inflammatory action.
  • Inflammatory and allergic eye diseases can be treated with an ophthalmic formulation of Unani eye drops, including stem wood of daruharidra.
  • The anti-inflammatory effect against ocular inflammation was noted in animal models.2 

Benefits of Daruharidra for Skin: 

Based on clinical observation, rate of healing and change in histomorphological features, a study on male adult goat wound healing activity was undertaken. Daruharidra can be used to expedite wound healing, as the extracts were applied as an ointment to open wounds in animal models and showed improvement.5 

Let me give you a tip that may slow down your ageing process! According to recent studies, Daruharidra may be used as an anti-ageing product. Researchers say that the extracts of Daruharidra plants have a rich source of antioxidants, that may be used to slow down the ageing process.

Dr. Rajeev Singh, BAMS

How to Use Daruharidra? 

  • Leaf Extract: The decoction of B. aristata leaves is often used.2 
  • Root decoction: Bhotiya communities employ root decoctions in India’s Himalayan ranges to treat eye disorders.2 
  • Fruit and leaf juice: Diarrhoea and dysentery are treated with fruit and leaf juice.2 
  • Bark decoction: Bark decoctions are used to treat fever and jaundice.2 

Your physician will prescribe you the appropriate dosage based on your individual needs.   

Also Read: Kutaja – Uses, Benefits & Side Effects

Frequently Asked Questions: 

What are the constituents of daruharidra? 

The plant includes several significant phytochemicals including proto-berberine, isoquinoline, bisbenzyl-isoquinoline, and phenolic acids.2 Other phytochemicals that have been identified from the flowers of B. aristata include flavonoids like quercetin, E-caffeic acid, chlorogenic acid, meratin, and rutin.3

Where does daruharidra found? 

This plant primarily grows in the sub-Himalayan region, the Nilgiri hills in southern India, and the hilly portions of Nepal between 2000 and 3500 metres.1

What are the common names of Daruharidra? 

Daru Haldi, Indian barberry, Tree turmeric, and Chitra are common names for daruharidra.1

What is the use of daruharidra?

Daruharidra is used as a stomachic, bitter tonic, laxative, diaphoretic, antiseptic, and antipyretic. It is used to treat severe eye infections, ulcers, and haemorrhoids externally. The root bark is used to treat skin diseases, boils, wounds, liver problems, ear problems, and antidiarrhoea agent.4 

Can daruharidra be used for managing diabetes?

Yes, it is used to manage diabetes by mimicking insulin, improving insulin action, and reducing insulin resistance.2 

How does daruharidra works for an eye? 

Due to the antimicrobial and antibacterial properties of daruharidra, it is effectively used in the treatment of eye illnesses and infections.2 

Is daruharidra is good for the brain? 

Yes, it is suitable for brain. It modulates certain brain chemicals like norepinephrine, serotonin, and dopamine and has an antidepressant-like effect. It is found to be helpful in various central nervous system problems including Alzheimer’s disease, depression, schizophrenia, and anxiety.2 

Is daruharidra good for the liver? 

Yes, it is good for the liver. The fruit extract acts by inhibiting microsomal drug metabolising enzymes, thus showing hepatoprotective properties.2 

Is daruharidra good for the heart? 

Yes, it is good of heart. B. aristata fruit extract has a positive inotropic effect in isolated heart tissues.2

Can daruharidra be used to heal wounds? 

Yes, it is used for the management of open heal wounds. It improves the healing rate and change in histomorphological features of wound.2 

Also Read: Suhaga – Uses, Benefits & Side Effects


  1. Choudhary S, Kaurav H, Madhusudan S, Chaudhary G. Daruharidra (Berberis aristata): Review based upon its Ayurvedic Properties. Int J Res Appl Sci Biotechnol. 2021; 8(2): 98-106.    https://www.ijrasb.com/ojs/index.php/ojs-ijrasb/article/view/301/233
  1. Potdar D, Hirwani RR, Dhulap S. Phyto-chemical and pharmacological applications of Berberis aristata. Fitoter. 2012; 83(5): 817-830.  https://sci-hub.st/10.1016/j.fitote.2012.04.012
  1. Malhotra B, Kulkarni GT, Dhiman N, Joshi DD, Chander S, Kharkwal A, Sharma AK, Kharkwal H. Recent advances on Berberis aristata emphasizing berberine alkaloid including phytochemistry, pharmacology and drug delivery system. J Herbal Med. 2021; 27: 100433.  https://sci-hub.st/10.1016/j.hermed.2021.100433
  1. Ahamad J, Kaskoos RA, Ali F, Mir SR. A Critical Review on the Unexplored Therapeutic Treasure of Himalayan Ayurvedic Drug Daruharidra (Berberis Aristata). Curr Trad Med. 2021; 7(3): 355-361.  https://www.researchgate.net/publication/346017592_A_Critical_Review_on_the_Unexplored_Therapeutic_Treasure_of_Himalayan_Ayurvedic_Drug_Daruharidra_Berberis_Aristata
  1. Komal S, Ranjan B, Neelam C, Birendra S, Kumar SN. Berberis aristata: A review. Int J Res Ayurveda Pharm. 2011; 2(2): 383-388.  https://www.researchgate.net/publication/215483150_Berberis_aristata_A_Review

Also Read: Lakshadi Guggul – Uses, Benefits & Side Effects


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