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Table of Contents
ORIGINAL ARTICLE
Year : 2021  |  Volume : 9  |  Issue : 2  |  Page : 120-125

A study on shelf life (Saviryatha Avadhi) of herbal drugs W.S.R. to Shatavari (Asparagus racemosus willd) Churna


1 Department of Dravyaguna, Sri Jayendra Saraswathi Ayurvedic College and Hospital, Chennai, Tamil Nadu, India
2 Department of Rasa Shastra and Bhaishajya Kalpana, Sri Jayendra Saraswathi Ayurvedic College and Hospital, Chennai, Tamil Nadu, India

Date of Submission10-Mar-2021
Date of Decision14-May-2021
Date of Acceptance15-May-2021
Date of Web Publication28-Jun-2021

Correspondence Address:
Dr. Polepalli M Rao
Department of Dravyaguna, Sri Jayendra Saraswathi Ayurvedic College and Hospital, Chennai 600123, Tamil Nadu
India
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None


DOI: 10.4103/jism.jism_23_21

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  Abstract 

Background: Ayurveda texts clearly described the shelf life of various formulations. Ayurveda herbs lose their medicinal properties over a period of time. As per Sharangadhara Samhita, the shelf life (Saviryatha avadhi) of Churna is two months. As per the Drugs and Cosmetic Act, the shelf life of Churna is two years. Hence, this study is planned to ascertain Saviryata Avadhi of Shatavari Churna (powder), which is a commonly used dosage form. Materials and Methods: Organoleptic, physicochemical characteristics and high-performance thin-layer chromatography (HPTLC) techniques are employed for analysis. The results of fresh Shatavari Churna sample are compared with those of a sample of two months, six months, and one-year-old Churna is stored in five porcelain jars. Results: Total ash, acid-insoluble ash, Ph value, alcohol-soluble extractive, and water-soluble extract values almost fluctuate within the ranges mentioned in API, Part 1, Volume IV. Steroidal saponins are the main biologically active constituents of Asparagus; however, the percentages of saponins were 33.20%, 31.15%, and 15.10% in fresh, one-month-, two-month-, and six-month-old samples, respectively. In one-year-old samples, saponins are completely absent. The absence of steroidal saponins indicates the expiry of the sample. Conclusion: Shelf life of Shatavari Churna may be considered as six months based on the active component percentage, if stored as per classics.

Keywords: Organoleptic characters, Shatavari, shelf life


How to cite this article:
Rao PM, Gupta KV. A study on shelf life (Saviryatha Avadhi) of herbal drugs W.S.R. to Shatavari (Asparagus racemosus willd) Churna. J Indian Sys Medicine 2021;9:120-5

How to cite this URL:
Rao PM, Gupta KV. A study on shelf life (Saviryatha Avadhi) of herbal drugs W.S.R. to Shatavari (Asparagus racemosus willd) Churna. J Indian Sys Medicine [serial online] 2021 [cited 2021 Jul 26];9:120-5. Available from: https://www.joinsysmed.com/text.asp?2021/9/2/120/319462




  Introduction Top


The term Saviryata avadhi is mentioned in context of the period during which the Virya (potency) of the drug remains intact. Acharya Sushruta says that both fresh and old drugs can be utilized for treatment right up to the point at which their organoleptic qualities, namely appearance, taste, smell etc., remain intact.[1] The time from the date of collection, preservation, and manufacture of medicine till the time at which the medicine has efficient potency to produce the desired therapeutic action is termed as SaviryathaAvadhi or the shelf life of drugs.

The shelf life of Churna is two months, as per Sharangdhara Samhita. The two common types of Churna that are used in Ayurveda medicine are Kashaya Churna (coarse powders) and Vastragalita Churna (fine powders). The classification of Churna is based on ingredients of three types, namely single herb powders, polyherbal powders, and herbomineral powders.

Among these single-ingredient fine powders, Shatavari Churna is selected for the study as the drug has broad spectrum activities and is indicated in many conditions. It is also a highly sold drug in the market. Shatavari possesses rejuvenative characteristics: It helps to cool the body heat, strengthens and nourishes bodily tissues, stabilizes female hormones, improves vitality in men, acts as a nutritive tonic, galactogogue and encourages the healthy production of milk in lactating mothers.


  Various Therapeutic Uses of the DrugShatavari Top


Satavari Churna is internally given in the form of Kshirapaka to treat bleeding disorders till symptoms subside. Khirapaka of Satavari and Gokshura check the hemorrhage of the urinary tract.[2],[3]Satavari Swarasa is given with honey in the morning, and this alleviates burning pain and is useful in all disorders of Pitta.[4]Satavari Ghritam is used in the treatment of Vatarakta.[5]Shatavari is the main drug in brihat Shatavari Ghrita: It is useful in treating disorders of the female genital tract that are caused by Pitta Dosha; it is used for Uttaravasti, Abhyanga, Pana and as Yoni Pichu.[6]Shatavari Ghritam with sugar is a good Rasayana; those who consume it do not fall prey easily to diseases, as it prevents all early aging signs and promotes strength.[7]Shatavari Ghrita,[8]Shatavari Churna with milk,[9] and Shatavari Kshirapakam are given internally as per the digestive capacity of the patient; these promote Shukradhatu, improve the vigor in sex, and promote sperm count. ShatavariChurna is given with warm milk and is useful in treating epilepsy.[10] If Shatavari Churna is given with cold water in dysuria, it acts as a urine alkalizer and relieves all the symptoms and micturition.[11] If Shatavari Churna is given internally with warm milk, it stimulates and increases the flow of breast milk; hence, the drug Shatavri is known as a herbal galactogogue.[12]

Apart from the earlier mentioned Ekamulika Prayogas (single-drug therapies), the Satavari churna has broad spectrum indications and is widely used; hence, the drug was selected for this study. The accelerated shelf life studies are time-saving, but real-time shelf life studies are more accurate. So even though real-time shelf life studies are time-consuming, because of their accuracy they were conducted for the present study.


  Materials and Methods Top


Preparation of the Study Drug

Fresh and dried roots of Shatavari were collected. To prove authenticity, powder microscopy was conducted at the Pharmacognosy unit, Dravyaguna department, Sri Jayendra Saraswathi Ayurveda College and Hospital. Powdered Shatavari Churna was sieved through mesh size # 72, and four samples of 50g each were kept in separate porcelain jars. They are stored at normal room temperature free from moisture and heat. One sample was taken at the intervals of initial, three, six months and one year for the study.

Methods of Evaluation

The screening of drugs includes organoleptic and physicochemical characteristics. Organoleptic characteristics such as texture, color, taste, odor etc. are explained after observing the sample physically. Physicochemical characteristics such as determination of physical constituents such as Ph value, moisture content, foreign matter, total ash, acid-insoluble ash, water-soluble ash, alcohol-soluble extractives, water-soluble extractives, preliminary phytochemical screening, thin-layer chromatography (TLC), and HPTLC are done.

Determination of physical constituents, as well as phytochemical analysis were done at Dravyaguna Lab, Sri Jayendra Saraswathi Ayurveda College, Chennai as per API, Part 1, Volume IV. TLC and HPTLC were done at Laila Nutraceuticals, Kanuru, Vijayawada and Manphar Lab, Vijayawada.


  Observation and Results Top


The organoleptic properties of Shatavari are furnished in [Table 1].
Table 1: Organoleptic properties of Shatavari Churna in different intervals

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The physical parameters observed are furnished in [Table 2].
Table 2: Comparison of physicochemical values of initial, two, six months, and one-year samples of Shatavari Churna

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Phytochemical analysis of Shatavari is furnished in [Table 3].
Table 3: Phytochemical analysis of Shatavari Churna

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Thin Layer Chromatography (TLC)

Color changes of Shatavari Churna are furnished in [Table 4].
Table 4: TLC and HPTLC of Shatavari Churna

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High Performance Thin Layer Chromatography (HPTLC)

HPTLC of Shatavari Churna shows four peaks (chemical components) in WinCATS planar chromatography manager [Figure 1][Figure 2][Figure 3].
Figure 1: HPTLC Shatavari Churna initial sample

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Figure 2: HPTLC Shatavari Churna six months old sample

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Figure 3: Molecular structures of chemical components of Shatavari Churna are Shatavarin, Rutin, and Querecitin

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Molecular explained it in detail. Savirayta Avadhi of structures: Molecular structures of the chemical components of Shatavari Churna are Shatavarin, Rutin, Querecitin etc.; these are furnished in Figure 3.


  Discussion Top


The concept of Savirayta Avadhi (shelf life) is not mentioned in Brihatrayee; however, in later texts Vangasena, Shrangdhara Samhita, and Yogaratnakara, Churna is two months as per Sharangadhara Samhita (thirteenth-century ACE) and three months as per Yoga Ratnakara (nineteenth-century ACE). This indicates that our Acharyas were pragmatic and changing shelf life as per their practical experiences. Hence, it is the need of the hour to standardize shelf life based on present conditions instead of old standards, but not compromising Ayurveda principles. New Gazette by GOI updated the shelf life of the Ayurveda formulations in the Drug and Cosmetic Act, rule 161B. As per the gazette, the shelf life of Churna or Kwatha Churna is two years instead of two months. It is understood that the advent of better packaging and storing will certainly improve the shelf life. Under the heading of Bheshajagara, ancient packing and storage methods are explained in Sushruta Samhita.[13]

Due to the development and adaptation of packaging and storage technology by Ayurveda industries, a need has arisen to study and establish the shelf life in today’s context. Hence, it is the need of the hour to validate the role of present and ancient storing and package methods. A recent study on the shelf life period of Rasayana Churna, a polyherbal compound, is found to be two years and 11 months on the basis of the accelerated stability study conducted.[14] In the present study, the real-time study of the shelf life of Shatavari Churna is conducted by employing the ancient storage method.

Regarding the organoleptic properties of Shatavari Churna, no change in texture was observed in all four samples but characteristic odor became indistinct in the one-year-old sample. Color changed from creamy to creamy yellow in six-month- and one-year-old samples. The taste of the very initial sample is characteristic bitter with mild sweeter and then it becomes characteristic bitter in all the three samples. The moisture content of initial sample (taken in hot summer) is 3.99%, after 2 months (tested in monsoon) is 5.48%, after six months (winter) is 6.15%. After 12 months (summer), its moisture content is 2.78%. This clearly shows that the seasonal changes in the finished herbal product impacts Churna as moisture content plays a major role in deterioration of drug, if not stored in air tight containers.

Total ash, acid-insoluble ash, Ph value, alcohol-soluble extractive, and water-soluble extract values almost fluctuate within the ranges mentioned in API, Part 1, Volume IV. However, the percentage of saponins was 33.20% in the initial sample, 31.15% after two months, 15.10% after six months, and completely absent in the one-year-old sample. Steroidal saponins are the main biologically active constituents of Asparagus.[15] The absence of steroidal saponins indicates the expiry of the sample.

Shelf life of Shatavari Churna may be considered as six months based on the active component percentage, if stored as per classics. The TLC and HPTLC techniques help to quantify the active components of herbal drugs. Similar refractive fraction values obtained during HPTLC analysis of Shatavari Churna initially and after six months showed the minimum deterioration of the product. The quality of Shatavari Churna slowly deteriorated with time.

Presence and percentage of Shatavarin, Rutin, and Querecitin compounds found in Shatavari decides the shelf life of the trail drug. No considerable changes were observed in the organoleptic characteristics and physical characteristics of the Shatavari Churna up to two months, but slowly they deteriorated.

In the present study, it is concluded that the shelf life of Saveryatha Avadhi of Shatavari Churna is two months, as the Shatavarin percentage is intact. It further strengthens the statement of Sharangadhara on Saviryatha avadhi.

After one year, if Shatavarin is not found in the sample, it implies that the powder has expired. It indicates that if powder preparations are stored in airtight containers with a seal, the powder can be used for two years. If the container is not airtight/opened, as the powder is exposed, it starts to deteriorate and it is advised to consume the powder within two months. Hence, this study showcases that in ancient times due to a lack of airtight packaging, our Acharya restricted Churna usage to only two months.

The labeling, presentation, and advertising of foods define shelf life as the time from production to the loss of optimum nutrition, that is, “Best before use date.” The end of the life of a food is when it exceeds the levels of microbiological contamination, loses its physicochemical qualities, and changes its organoleptic qualities. Taking into consideration all these for the present study, all the parameters were complied with and results were analyzed.

Shelf life depends on the degradation mechanism of the specific product. Most can be influenced by several factors: exposure to light, heat, and moisture, transmission of gases, mechanical stress, and contamination by things such as microorganisms. Product quality is often mathematically modeled around a parameter (concentration of a chemical compound, a microbiological index, or moisture content).

Raw materials have protecting external coverings like cuticle and cork, which protect them from environmental or microbial deterioration. Churna has limited shelf life in comparison to raw drug, as it has more exposed surface area. The Churna preparation was developed due to its lesser particle size and larger open surface area needed for its efficient absorption.[16]

Earlier, a comparative accelerated study of two samples of Kutaki (Picrorryza kurroa Royla ex. Benth) Churna was conducted. The first sample was packed in a food-grade polythene bag; the second sample was packed in a plastic container having an aluminum foil covering. This was done with storage specification of temperature and a relative humidity of 40°C and 75% with a testing frequency of zero, one, two, and three months, respectively. The rate of degradation of the drug was more in the polythene pack than in the foil pack.[17]


  Conclusion Top


The concept of shelf life (Saviryta Avadhi) and packaging and storing (Bheshajagara) are dealt with in Ayurveda classics. The advent of better packaging helped pharmacies to increase shelf life. In this study, it was observed that Shatavari Churna stored as per the classical storage method in real-time shelf life studies lost its saponins after six months. Hence, it may be concluded that the shelf life of Shatavari Churna is six months if stored according to the classical method. Further studies on various Churna are recommended based on the presence of their active components.

Acknowledgment

The author would like to acknowledge the Vice Chancellor, SCSVMV and Dr. Prasanna M, for their support in conducting shelf-life analysis of the product.

Financial support and sponsorship

Nil.

Conflicts of interest

There are no conflicts of interest.



 
  References Top

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Acharya JT. Susruta Samhita with Commentary. Varanasi: Choukhambha Orientalia; 2008. p. 160.  Back to cited text no. 1
    
2.
Sathyendra M. Bhavaprakasha. Varanasi: Chowkhambha Surabharati Prasthan; 2014. Chikitsa Sthana. 9.43.  Back to cited text no. 2
    
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Sharma PV. Charaka Samhita. Vol. II. Varanasi: Chaukambha Sanskrit Sansthan; 2012. Chikitsa Sthana. 4.85.  Back to cited text no. 3
    
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Sathyendra M. Bhavaprakasha. Varanasi: Chowkhambha Surabharati Prasthan; 2014. 26.21.  Back to cited text no. 4
    
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Srikantha Murthy KR. Ashtanga Hridayam. Varanasi: Chowkhamba Krishnadas Academy; 2014. Uttaratantra. 39.157.  Back to cited text no. 7
    
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Sharma PV. Charaka Samhita. Vol. II. Varanasi: Chaukambha Sanskrit Sansthan; 2012. Chikitsa Sthana. 2-3.18.  Back to cited text no. 8
    
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Saxena N. Vaidhya Jeevanam of Lolambharaaja. 1st ed. Varanasi: Krishnadas Academy; 2000. 5.5.  Back to cited text no. 9
    
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Sharma PV. Charaka Samhita. Vol. II. Varanasi: Chaukambha Sanskrit Sansthan; 2012. Chikitsa Sthana. 10.64.  Back to cited text no. 10
    
11.
Sharma PV.: Varanasi Chakradatta Chaukhambha Publishers; 2007. 32.6, 284.  Back to cited text no. 11
    
12.
Suresh Babu MS. Yoga Ratnakara. Varanasi: Chowkhambha Sanskrit Series Office; 2014. p. 427.  Back to cited text no. 12
    
13.
Srikantha Murthy KR, Susruta Samhita Sutrastanam. Varanasi: Chowkhambha Orientalia; 2017. 36.17.  Back to cited text no. 13
    
14.
Verma P, Galib , Patgiri B, Prajapati PK. Shelf-life evaluation of Rasayana Churna: A preliminary study. Ayu2014;35:184-6.  Back to cited text no. 14
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Negi JS, Singh P, Joshi GP, Rawat MS, Bisht VK. Chemical constituents of asparagus. Pharmacogn Rev 2010;4:215-20.  Back to cited text no. 15
    
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Ankit G, Mundeep J, Prajapati Pradeep K. Shelf life of Ayurvedic dosage forms—Traditional view, current status and prospective need. Indian J Tradit Knowl 2011;10:672-7.  Back to cited text no. 16
    
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Kahalekar AS. Concept of shelf life (Saviryata Avadhi) with special reference to Churna Kalpana. MD (Ay) theses. Jaipur: NIA; 2002.  Back to cited text no. 17
    


    Figures

  [Figure 1], [Figure 2], [Figure 3]
 
 
    Tables

  [Table 1], [Table 2], [Table 3], [Table 4]



 

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Introduction
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