Jyotishmati (Malkangani) - Celastrus Paniculatus
Jyotishmati (Malkangani) - Celastrus Paniculatus

Jyotishmati (Malkangani) – Celastrus Paniculatus

Jyotishmati is a woody herb with immense uses. It is an Ayurvedic plant that has many health benefits.  It is called by many names such as Malkangani in Hindi and Climbing Staff tree, Staff tree, Black oil tree or Intellect tree in English. Its botanical name of is Celastrus Paniculatus. It is native to India and used in various Ayurvedic preparations such as Brahmyadi Churna. It is also used to treat a wide range of disorders.


Jyotishmati is a brain and nervine tonic. It contains compounds such as malkangunin, celapanin, celapanigin, celapagin, pristimerin, zeylasterone and zeylastera. It also contains fatty oil with palmitic, oleic, linoleic and linolenic acids.


Jyotishmati contains pharmacologically active compounds such as a steroid, terpenoid, carbohydrate, alkaloid, saponin, and phenolic compounds.  It is bitter in taste and hot in potency.


  • Nootropic
  • Anti-arthritic
  • Anxiolytic
  • Hypolipidemic
  • Antioxidant
  • Anti-atherosclerotic
  • Anti-stress
  • Anti-inflammatory
  • Anti-analgesic


The seeds and oil extracted from the seeds of Jyotishmati are used for medicinal purposes. Leaves are also beneficial in eye diseases and headache. The seed oil should be taken as 5-15 drops. The powdered seeds can be taken 1-3 grams twice or thrice a day (as recommended by the doctor). Fresh seed oil can be applied locally. If taking seed count, 10 seeds can be taken at once daily and can be increased to 15 and then to 20 seeds.


The jyotishmati plant is of great therapeutic values. It is used in the treatment of cognitive dysfunction, epilepsy, insomnia, rheumatism, gout, dyspepsia, etc. (1)

It is a powerful antioxidant and protects from DNA damage.

Brain Tonic

The seed oil of Jyotishmati is very useful and used as brain tonic due to its beneficial effect on memory and intellect. (2).

Memory Improvement

Brahmi is a traditional herbal medicine that can be used for memory improvement. Research has suggested that Bacopa improves the memory significantly. (3)

It is also beneficial for hyperactive children suffering from ADHD. The mechanism by which jyotishmati enhances cognition (memory) may be due to increased acetylcholine level in the brain. (4)

Mental Disorders

Jyotishmati is used to treat many brain-related disorders. The seed and seed oil are used for stimulating intelligence and sharpens memory. The oil improves IQ level in mentally retarded children. (5)

It is also used to manage Dyslexia (learning disability found in children). (6)

The seed oil improves the functioning of the brain, sensory and motor systems. It improves mental health and used to treat paralysis.

Stress Management

Jyotishmati is a relaxing herb. It is used to treat acute and chronic stress. Jyotishmati plant is rich in antioxidants that help in stress management. It is highly effective in reducing stress for hours. (7)

It is also used to treat a headache.


Depression is a neuropsychiatric disorder where monoamine signaling and monoamine metabolites level are reduced than normal. Research shows that Jyotishmati seed oil produces significant anti-depressant by interacting with dopamine-D2 receptors, serotonergic and GABAB receptors. (8)

Wound Healing

Leaves of jyotishmati have shown the wound healing activity. (9)


Jyotishmati oil is also used to treat diseases like arthritis, sciatica, joint pain, and gout. In Chinese traditional medicine system, jyotishmati is used in treating Rheumatoid Arthritis (RA) and other inflammatory diseases. (10)

Massaging with Jyotishmati oil calms down the painful sensations of arthritis and other related pain.

Hair Tonic

Jyotishmati oil acts as a hair tonic. Massaging with its seed oil nourishes hair and scalp by improving blood circulation. It strengthens hair, reduces hair fall and dandruff.


Jyotishmati herb is a relaxing herb and can be used for treating hypertension. Brahmyadi Churna prepared from Brahmi, Shankhapushpi, Jyotishmati, Jatamansi, Vacha, and Ashwagandha in equal proportion is used to lower the blood pressure. The symptoms of hypertension such as a headache, insomnia, and giddiness were reduced. (11).

Intestinal Diseases

Jyotishmati is a potent intestine relaxing agent. Jyotishmati plant is used for the prevention and treatment of various intestinal diseases and gastrointestinal disturbances such as dyspepsia and stomach ulcers. (12)

The seed oil shows the gastroprotective property. It works by decreasing the level of gastric juices and increasing the gastric pH 9. (13)


Jyotishmati oil is used externally and internally. It can be applied on the affected area. The seeds can be taken orally.

Overdose Side Effects

No side effects of Jyotishmati oil are known till date even if consumed 5gms/kg.  No side effects of overdoses of consuming Jyotishmati seeds have been reported but the doses should be increased gradually.

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