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 Table of Contents  
ORIGINAL ARTICLE
Year : 2022  |  Volume : 7  |  Issue : 1  |  Page : 75-80

Preparation of Gomaya Swarasa (cow dung-expressed juice): A preliminary pharmaceutical evaluation


Department of Dravyaguna, ITRA, Gujarat Ayurved University, Jamnagar, Gujarat, India

Date of Submission08-Dec-2021
Date of Decision09-Feb-2022
Date of Acceptance11-Feb-2022
Date of Web Publication07-Jul-2022

Correspondence Address:
Dr. K S Sariga
Department of Dravyaguna, ITRA, Jamnagar, Gujarat
India
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None


DOI: 10.4103/jdras.JDRAS_78_21

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  Abstract 

BACKGROUND: Gomaya Swarasa (Cow dung expressed juice) is one of the commonly used materials in Ayurvedic Pharmaceutics. Available Ayurvedic pharmacopeias provide inadequate information about the process of preparation of Gomaya Swarasa. This article deals with the preparation of Gomaya Swarasa and its preliminary pharmaceutical evaluation. MATERIALS AND METHODS: Fresh Gomaya (cow dung) obtained from Bos primigenius indicus species was used to prepare Gomaya Swarasa by using two different methods: first, by keeping a piece of clean muslin cloth inside the Gomaya for one Yama three hours and extracting the Swarasa by squeezing it. In another method, water was added, in three different ratios: half, same, and double the quantity with freshly collected Gomaya and properly mixed, set aside for three hours, and finally kept in a muslin cloth and tied like a Pottali for twenty four hours. The Swarasa obtained were collected on the following day; the yield, consistency, specific gravity, and pH were analyzed following standard methods of API. Each method was repeated three times. RESULTS: No yield was obtained in the first method of extraction. The maximum quantity of Swarasa obtained was 74% in 1:2 (Gomaya: water) ratio dilution, followed by 37.4% in 1:1 ratio dilution. The consistency of Swarasa obtained in 1:1/2 dilution was very thick with an average specific gravity of 1.009, whereas that in 1:1 dilution is somewhat thick but more liquid in nature with an average specific gravity of 1.006. The Swarasa obtained from 1:2 dilution is thin and of liquid consistency with an average specific gravity of 1.004. The maximum average pH obtained is 7.56 in 1:1/2 dilution, and the minimum average pH is 6.28 in 1:2 ratio dilution. CONCLUSION: Gomaya Swarasa prepared by adding the double quantity of water can be taken as a better method of preparation in terms of yield, consistency, and specific gravity. However, the pH of Gomaya Swarasa from this method was slightly acidic (average pH-6.28) in nature. Thus, Swarasa from 1:1 dilution can be taken as standard in terms of pH, where the other factors such as yield, consistency, and specific gravity are also acceptable. The Swarasa obtained from different dilutions can be used in pharmaceutics based on its need in terms of pH, yield, consistency, and specific gravity.

Keywords: Cow dung expressed juice, Gomaya Swarasa, Panchagavya, standardization


How to cite this article:
Sariga K S, Acharya R. Preparation of Gomaya Swarasa (cow dung-expressed juice): A preliminary pharmaceutical evaluation. J Drug Res Ayurvedic Sci 2022;7:75-80

How to cite this URL:
Sariga K S, Acharya R. Preparation of Gomaya Swarasa (cow dung-expressed juice): A preliminary pharmaceutical evaluation. J Drug Res Ayurvedic Sci [serial online] 2022 [cited 2022 Sep 27];7:75-80. Available from: http://www.jdrasccras.com/text.asp?2022/7/1/75/350057




  Introduction Top


Gomaya (Cow dung), one of the prime constituents of Panchagavya, is considered as a sacred substance and as a purifying agent in Indian culture.[1] The importance of Panchagavya is immensely growing in India and many other places. In 2017, SEED (Science for equity, empowerment and development division, Department of science and technology) launched a national program for scientific validation of Panchagavya - SVAROP (Scientific Validation and Research on Panchagavya).[2] Further, in 2020, the government unveiled SUTRA PIC (Scientific Utilization through Research Augmentation-Prime Products from Indigenous Cows) India programme for research on “indigenous” cows funded by multiple scientific ministries, including the Department of Science and Technology (DST), AYUSH department, etc.[3]

Gomaya Swarasa, a byproduct of Gomaya, is one of the components of Panchagavya Ghrita, a frequently used formulation for the treatment of Mano Vikaras.[4] Experimental studies of Panchagavaya Ghrita were reported to have antiepileptic, antidepressant, anti-amnesic, nootropic, and memory-enhancing activities.[5] Cow dung had a broad spectrum of applications in the field of health care, agriculture and as a biofuel.[1]

Gomaya is a mixture of cow dung and urine in a ratio of around 3: 1 and it comprises a mixture of undigested fiber, sloughed off intestinal epithelium, bile pigments, intestinal bacteria, mucus, and 24 minerals such as nitrogen, potassium, traces of sulfur, iron, magnesium, calcium, cobalt, and manganese.[6] The pH of cow dung is slightly alkaline (8.5).[7]

The Ayurvedic drug industry make use of cow dung for various purposes, such as an ingredient in medicinal preparations like Panchagavya Ghrita and Mahapanchagavya Ghrita where Gomaya is used as an ingredient in the form of Gomaya Swarasa.[8]Gomaya Swarasa is indicated as an ingredient in a Savarnakara lepa in Vrana Pratishedha.[9]Bhasmas are traditionally manufactured by igniting cow dung cakes for providing gradual and graded heat by Kukkuta puta, Gaja puta etc where the dried cow dung cakes are used in the form of fuel.[10] For pharmaceutical processes such as Shodhana/purification of poisonous substances such as Kupilu,[11]Chitraka[12] etc. or to remove the unwanted properties of Rasa drugs Gomaya in the form of Swarasa is used as a medium. Gomaya in wet form is used as a platform for making Parpati preparations.[13]

Gomaya is also known as Govita, Kareeshama, Chaganama, Goshakrut, and Visham[14] and it possesses Kashaya, Tikta rasa, Laghu, Rooksha Guna, Sheeta veerya, Katu Vipaka,[15] and Hikka Swasahara properties.[14] Dried cow dung cakes are also called as Vanopala, Pishtaka, Chagana, Chana, Upala, Girinda, Upalasathi, and Varati, which are used as a source of fuel.[16]

In the case of Gomaya Swarasa, though indicated in many ailments, only one reference is available for the preparation that is from an old and rare book: Navaparibhasha written by Kaviraj Upendranatha Dasa.[17] In this traditional method, a cloth should be placed inside cow dung for One Yama (three hours) and the Swarasa is to be collected from the wet cloth by squeezing it. However, because of the practical unfeasibility of this method, many other alternative procedures that are more achievable are in practice. Authentic textbooks such as Sarangadhara samhita recommend collecting Swarasa from dry drugs by adding double quantity of water.[18] Thus, the preparation of Gomaya Swarasa Nirmana with the feasible parameters and up-to-date modification is the need of the time.


  Materials and Methods Top


Materials

  1. Cow dung: Fresh cow dung with a thick consistency was collected from Bos primigenius indicus species in the early morning hours from 5 am to 6 am. Precaution was taken to avoid more dilution of cow dung with cow urine. The cow dung with more semiliquid and liquid consistency was excluded in the present study.


  2. Muslin cloth: A cotton cloth of 1 m length where warp is 22 per cm±1 and weft is 18 ± 1 per cm was purchased from the textile market. The cloth was washed and dried before the experiment to remove any starch content.


  3. Water: Drinking water with a pH range between 6 and 7 was used in the study.


  4. Equipment: Three stainless steel vessels (capacity of 10 L, 6L, and 5L), three stainless steel trays, a digital weighing machine, a muslin cloth, a measuring mug (capacity of 1 L), a digital pH meter (testo 236-pH1), and a strong wooden stick to hang the Pottali.


Methods

Swarasa was extracted in two different methods from fresh Gomaya (cow dung) obtained from Bos primigenius indicus species. The details of methodology of its preparation are summarized in [Figure 1]. In the first method, Swarasa was extracted following the traditional guidelines. For this purpose, exactly 2.5 kg of Gomaya was taken and half part of the cow dung was spread inside a stainless steel tray. A clean muslin starch-free cloth was spread over that, and the remaining cow dung was placed over that. This was kept undisturbed for One Yama (three hours), and Swarasa was extracted by squeezing the cloth [Figure 2].
Figure 1: Gomaya Swarasa extraction methods

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Figure 2: Procedure of extraction of Gomaya Swarasa without adding water

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In the second method, water was added in three different ratios: half, same, and double the quantity with freshly collected Gomaya weighing 2.5 kg; it was properly mixed, set aside for 3 h, then kept inside a muslin starch-free cloth, and tied like a Pottali for 24 h [Figure 3]. The maximum amount of water (1:2 ratio) and time for keeping it in the Pottali is fixed according to the references mentioned in Sargadhara Samhita Swarasa Adhyaya.[18] The Swarasa obtained was collected on the next day and the yield, consistency, specific gravity, and pH were analyzed following standard methods.[19] Each experiment was carried out in triplicate and in each batch 2.5 kg of fresh Gomaya was used.
Figure 3: Procedure of extraction of Gomaya Swarasa with adding water

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  Results Top


The first method, that is the traditional method of extraction does not yield any Swarasa. Among the other methods, maximum Swarasa (74%) was obtained in 1:2 (Gomaya: water) ratio dilution, followed by 37.6% in 1:1 dilution and a minimum of 2% in 1:1/2 dilution. The consistency of Swarasa obtained in 1:1/2 dilution was very thick whereas that in 1:1 dilution was somewhat thick but more liquid in nature. The Swarasa obtained from 1:2 dilution was thin and liquid in consistency. The maximum pH obtained was 7.78 in 1:1/2 dilution, and the minimum pH was 6.24 in 1:2 ratio dilution. The maximum specific gravity obtained was 1.0091 in 1:1/2 dilution, and the minimum specific gravity obtained was 1.0038 in 1:2 dilution. Observations from all methods are summarized in [Table 1].
Table 1: Observations in terms of yield, consistency, pH, and specific gravity

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  Discussion Top


The moisture content in the collected cow dung is a key factor for determining the amount of Swarasa. No yield was obtained as per the traditional method, because the cow dung does not contain enough moisture to make the cloth completely wet. Generally, the moisture content of the cow dung ranges from 65% to 85%.[20] So, this method cannot be considered an acceptable way to obtain Swarasa. Thus, validation, up-to-date modification, and rectification of traditional procedures are very essential for the virtuous future and global acceptance of Ayurveda.

In all other methods, the yield and consistency of Swarasa obtained is directly proportional to the amount of water added. As the factors such as yield, consistency, and specific gravity are important for the preparation of drugs, pH is a critical feature for all the medications. pH has a direct influence on the solubility of the molecule, determining the stability of medications, the biological tolerability of the formulation, and the absorption of the molecule.[21] For the purpose of Shodhana also, pH has a great role, so as to remove the toxic chemical moieties present in the drug that are either basic or acidic in nature.[22]

The pH of Gomaya is slightly alkaline in nature. By the addition of water with a pH ranging from 6 to 7, the alkaline nature of Swarasa decreases, which is inevitable. The specific gravity of Gomaya swarasa obtained is inversely proportional to the amount of water added. The average specific gravity observed is 1.0088, 1.0055, and 1.0039, respectively, in 1:1 /2, 1:1, and 1:2 ratio dilutions. The range of specific gravity ranges from 1.009 to 1.004, which can be taken as standard.

In the present study, the maximum yield of Swarasa was obtained in the 1:2 ratio dilution. However, in this dilution, the average pH was 6.28, which is slightly acidic in nature; this may affect the desired pharmacological action of Gomaya Swarasa. In the 1:1/2 dilution, the average pH was 7.56; however, the yield was very less, and the consistency was very thick. So, this method is also not feasible. In the 1:1 dilution, the average pH observed was 7.22, which is slightly alkaline in nature. The yield and consistency of the Swarasa obtained is also acceptable to some extent. So, this can be taken as an acceptable method after considering the factor yield, consistency, specific gravity, and pH.

Instead of adding water, Gomutra, which has a pH range from 7.4 to 8.4,[23] can be added according to the desired action of the Swarasa.


  Conclusion Top


Gomaya Swarasa, which is prepared by adding a double quantity of water, can be taken as a better method of preparation in terms of yield, consistency, specific gravity, and has a slightly acidic pH (6.28). Swarasa from 1:1 dilution can be taken as standard in terms of pH, where the other factors such as yield, consistency, and specific gravity are also acceptable. The Swarasa obtained from different dilutions can be utilized in pharmaceutics based on their need in terms of pH, yield, consistency, and specific gravity.

Acknowledgement

Authors are thankful to Director, ITRA, Jamnagar for providing facilities to carry out research work in laboratories of the institute.

Financial support and sponsorship

Part of PhD research fund, funded by Institute of Teaching and Research in Ayurveda, Ministry of Ayush, Government of India, Jamnagar.

Conflicts of interest

There are no conflicts of interest.





 
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    Figures

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