Kutki Root (Picrorhiza kurroa) – Health Benefits, Uses, Dosage & Side Effects

The scientific name of Kutki is Picroorhiza Kurroa. The native of this traditional and healing herb is the Himalayan Mountains and now it is commonly grown in Himachal Pradesh, Jammu & Kashmir, Sikkim, and UttaraKhand. The kutki root is called kadugu rohini in Tamil. It is one of the powerful Ayurvedic medicines to treat various health problems, such as skin problems, chronic fever, and diabetes. The kutki is a Sanskrit name, which means bitter; the name of this herb represents its taste. This herb belongs to the Plantaginaceae family. It is a large family; this family contains 3000 species. kutki is a perennial herb; it has a soft hairy stem. The leaves of this herb are narrow or broad, which grows almost near to the ground. The white or faded bluish-purple color kutki flowers bloom on top of clusters. The kutki root is very useful to get better relief from the periodic attacks of hysteria, convulsion, and epilepsy. This kadugu rohini helps to increase the bile juice secretion, and also it has the antibiotic property. The other names of this herb are Hellbore, Kuru, katuka, kurri, katuki, katuko, Hu Huang Lian, kutka, kadu, Picrorhiza.

In This Article

Benefits of Kutki Root

Traditional Uses of Kutki Root

Side Effects of Kutki Root

Ayurvedic Benefits of Kutki Root

Uses and Dosage of Kutki Root

Common Names of Kutki Root

Botanical Name: Picrohiza Kurroa

Tamil Name: akutam, Acokarokini, amakkini, akutarokini, Kadugurohini, katukarogini

Hindi Name: kardi, Kutki, karu, karoi, katuka, karwi

Malayalam Name: katuku rohani, Kadukrohini

Telugu Name: katukarogani, Katuka-rogani, katukkurohini

Kannada Name: Katukarohini, katukarohini

Marathi Name: bala kadu, Kali katuki, Kalikutki

Gujarati Name: Kadu, katu

Bengali Name: Katuki, katki

Punjabi Name: Kaundd, Kaud, Karru, kaur

Assamese Name: Katki, Kutki

Nepali Name: Kurki

Oriya Name: Katuki

Sanskrit Name: arishta, Anjani, Tikta, katumbhara (कटम्भरा), Kaurohini, Tiktarohini, Sutiktaka, Kavi, Kauka, Rohini

Chinese Name: Hu huang lian

Urdu Name: Kutki

Health Benefits of Kutki Root

Kutki is one of the powerful herbs, which provides many health benefits for human life. This powerful herb helps to cure many stomach problems and enhances the immune system. Here some health benefits are provided.

Good for heart

The kutki root has the cardio-tonic, which helps to maintain heart health. This herb has a rich antioxidant property, which is effectively fighting against the inflammation so that it is good for overall cardiovascular health. The anti-inflammatory component of this herb, such as apocynin prevent the formation of blockage in the arteries, and it may help to reduce the risk of heart attacks.

The researchers suggested using this kutki as an antithrombotic drug that prevents the platelets from clumping and clots formation. Due to the antioxidant property of this herb, it is effectively fighting against lipid peroxidation so that it reduces the risk of atherosclerosis and arterial plaques.

This kutki not only protects the blood vessels from the formation of plaque and also helps the angiogenesis, the formation of the new blood vessels, and it maintains the healthy circulatory system.

Promote digestive System

The kutki root helps to improve the digestion power, and also it helps you to get a better lifestyle. Consuming the kutki will help to treat some digestive problems, such as excessive gas formation, bowel movements, indigestion, or dyspepsia.

Due to the laxative property of this herb, it is used to treat constipation in Ayurveda. It is also used to treat vomiting and nausea.

Boost Appetite

If you have a sluggish appetite and feeling hungry after eating, a dose of kutki root helps to deal with this problem. It stimulates the secretion of gastric so that it improves the appetite.

Ayurvedic medicine suggests using this herb in countering anorexia so that it enhances the eating ability and also it helps to effectively fight against the symptoms, such as fatigue and extra weight loss. 

Moreover, kutki also helped the weight problem by boosting the digestive fire, maintaining regular bowel movements, and improving metabolism. It will help to avoid the accumulation of fat and manage better weight.

Helps to Fight Fever

The mixture of powdered kutki roots with sugar and warm water helps to treat fever. The decoction of kutki root with the ghee is also recommended for fever.

The kutki root is bitter in taste, and it is useful to soothe the fever. The antipyretic property of this herb helps to cool down the body temperature and cure the high fever also.

Boost Immunity

The kutki herb can easily boost the immune system. The extract of the kutki root helps to increase the white blood cells and lymphocytes; these play an essential role in the immunity system.

Apart from this, this herb mainly increases the level of cell signals proteins known as cytokines in the body. These cells are connected to maintain the immune defenses in the body. The kutki taken with the licorice can soothe the hiccups.

Cure Respiratory problems

Ayurveda suggested using the kutki root to treat respiratory problems, such as bronchitis and asthma. This herb has anti-inflammatory, muscle relaxant, and immune-boosting properties; due to this, it may be a perfect remedy for the breathing problem.

In one study, consuming high doses of kutki root powder proves to improve the functionality of lungs, prevent bronchial asthma, and treat this problem. Another research proves the kutki roots help to cure respiratory problems.

Ease Arthritic Pain

The studies about the kutki prove this herb can prevent inflammation related to arthritis. This herb is a promising therapeutic option for arthritis. The clinical trial of this herb on the people who have osteoarthritis and arthritic pain in the spine shows a positive result.

Prevent Psoriasis

The psoriasis is caused because of certain skin infections or bacterial infection on the injured skin. The kutki root is to strengthen the immune system so that it automatically kills all the harmful bacterias in the colon and blood.

The kutki is a well-known herb to remove the excess pitta and heat from the body, in which it controls the burning sensation and itching in the skin. This herb also cleans the scales and plaques and helps to treat the psoriasis patients.

Good for Skin

The kutki will help to cure many skin problems, and also it helps to get the glowing skin. The antioxidant property of the kutki root helps to treat many skin problems. Moreover, consuming this herb helps to treat people who have skin allergies, dermatitis, and deep wounds.

Reduce Fat Liver

The kutki root may help to avoid the fat formation in the liver, and it reduces the risk of the fatty liver problem. The administration of kadugu rohini has demonstrated to protect the liver from the hypoxia damage, chronic liver injuries, and liver fibrosis, caused by compounds like vanillic acid.

Treat Cirrhosis of the Liver

The kutki roots provide better relief from the cirrhosis liver. This kutki root powder is used to cure this problem. Consuming a tsp of kutki root powder with the honey three times per day will cure the cirrhosis of the liver.

Consuming double of this dose with warm water three times per day will help to get better relief from constipation. This herb will stimulate the liver and increase the secretion of juices.

Treat Jaundice

In Ayurveda, the kutki root is used to treat jaundice. The animal-based study proves this kutki root can reduce hepatitis. The clinical research proves, consuming 375 mg of kutki root powder in thrice days for 2 weeks will reduce the bilirubin and cure the liver damage.

Better Liver Function

The kutki plant powder helps to the proper secretion of the bile; by this, it helps to bring liver enzymes to normal levels and support the functionality of the liver.

Consuming toxins, such as cigarette smoke, alcohol, and other medications, will weaken the liver; this herb helps to protect the damaged liver. The kutki will clean the harmful toxins from the liver and make it work better.

Kutki for Stomach

Traditionally, the kutki root helps to cure some stomach problems so consuming 10 gm of kutki root powder with the honey helps to treat stomach aches.

In Chinese medicine, this kutki root is a good remedy for piles, diarrhea, fistula, and other stomach problems. Consuming the 6-10 gm of kutki root will help to cure any of these problems.

Ayurvedic Benefits of Kutki Root

Fever: Prepare the decoction by using the kutki root powder with the neem powder. Consuming one cup of this decoction will help to lower the body temperature.

Liver Problem: Consume 1 tsp of kutki root powder with the honey to treat liver problems.

Treat Diabetes: Mix the 1/2 tsp of kutki root powder and turmeric powder in 1 cup of hot water and leave it for 5 minutes. Consume this water morning and evening every day. This is good for insulin-resistant patients. It also detoxifies the liver and helps to deal with diabetes.

Treat Liver Cirrhosis: Consume the 1/2 tsp of kutki root powder every day morning and evening. You can also consume this kutki root powder with 1/2 tsp of honey and 1 tsp of fresh aloe vera gel for the better taste. The kutki capsules and tablets are also available in the market; you can also consume it two times per day.

Treat Skin Problem: Mix the 1 tsp of kutki root powder with the 1 tsp of turmeric and 1 tsp of butter. Consuming this mixture every morning will make your skin radiant.

For Asthma: Mix the 1/2 tsp of kutki root powder with the pinch of black pepper powder, 1 tsp of turmeric, and 1 tsp of honey. Consume this mixture 2 times per day. The kutki tablet is also available in the market. You can also consume 1 tablet per day with black pepper, turmeric, and honey.

For Tapeworm: Consume 1/2 tablespoon of kutki root powder with the 1 tsp of honey in the morning and evening before meals.

Ascites: Boil 50 gm of kutki root in the 200 ml of water and consuming this liquid will help to cure Ascites.

For Gout: The combination of heart-leaved moonseed, kutki root, Ginger, and Licorice is the best remedy for gout. Take the 50 gm of kutki root, heart-leaved moonseed, Ginger, Licorice and powder these mixtures. Store this powder in the glass bottle. Consume 1/4 tsp of this powder with 1 tsp of honey once per day to treat gout.

For Fever, Bleeding Problem, and Heart Support: Mix 10 gm of kutki root powder with an equal amount of licorice powder. Consume 500 mg or 1 gm of this mixture in the luke-warm water once or twice per day.

For Hiccups and Vomiting: Mix the 1 gm of kutki root powder with 1 tsp of honey and consume it two times per day.

For Elevated Blood Sugar Level: Mix the 1/2 tsp of kutki root powder and 1/2 tsp of turmeric in 1/4 cup of warm water and consume this mixture before each time of the meal.

For Allergies and Asthma: Mix the 1/4 tsp of kutki root powder, 1/2 tsp of ginger, 1/2 tsp of turmeric, and local raw honey in 1/4 cup of warm water. Consume this mixture three times per day after the meal.

For parasites: Mix the 1/2 tsp of kutki root powder, 1/2 tsp of Vidanga, and 1 tsp of honey. Consume this mixture 2 times per day before the meal.

For Arthritis: Take 1/2 tsp of ginger, 1/2 tsp of kutki root powder, and 1 tsp of castor oil and mix it with the warm water. Consume this mixture every night before bed.

Traditional Uses of Kutki Root

    • The kutki root has a lot of bitter glucosides, such as picrorhiza and kutkin.
    • The dried kutki root has anti-inflammatory, antibacterial, and antiperiodic properties. It is used for the cholagogue, cathartic, stomachic, laxative, and bitter tonic.
    • The kutki root will boost the immune system and effectively fight against the parasite Leishmania donovani; this will cause the tropical parasitic disease, such as leishmaniasis.
    • This herb has the apocynin; it is a powerful anti-inflammatory, which helps to reduce the aggregation of the platelet.
    • This herb is also used to treat snake bites and scorpion stings.
    • The kutki root is more beneficial for the liver and digestive system, and also it used to treat a wide range of health problems, such as constipation, fever, jaundice, and dyspepsia.
    • You can collect the kutki root in autumn and dry it for later use.
    • The kutki root helps to treat bronchial asthma and a lot of auto-immune diseases like vitiligo and psoriasis. It also helps to reduce the cholesterol level in the blood and reduce the coagulation time.
    • This herb is beneficial for cold, cough, and asthma, and also it will deal with the anemia, liver complaints, and jaundice.
    • It helps to improve appetite and stimulates the secretion of gastric.
    • It is used to treat the problems in the liver, chronic diarrhea, upper respiratory tract, and scorpion sting.
    • This herb is used as the adulterant or substitute of the Gentiana kurroo.
    • This herb is very useful to get better relief from the intestinal worm infection.
    • It is used to treat jaundice, vitiligo, rheumatoid arthritis, and hepatitis.
    • It is beneficial for restoring the liver function after the alcohol toxicity.
    • It is used for weight loss.
    • The seedpods are naturally stimulating the carminative, aphrodisiac, and emmenagogue. It reduces spasms, fever, and caries.
    • It is very useful for people who are suffering from dyspnea and cough.
    • It helps to reduce inflammation and provide better relief from asthma and allergy.
    • This herb is effectively treated with menorrhagia, and nose bleeds.
    • It helps to maintain the sugar level in the blood.
    • This herb reduces hyperacidity, boosts metabolism, and increases the digestive fire.
    • The kutki root is very helpful for spleen, liver, and gallbladder problems.
    • It is good for skin problems, such as psoriasis and eczema. It makes the skin radiant and clear.
    • This herb treats diarrhea, nausea, and constipation.
    • This herb is good to treat urinary tract infections.
    • This herb is good to treat arthritis and related problems.
    • It helps to treat hormonal imbalance.
    • Consuming the kutki root decoction with the honey helps to treat stomach aches.
    • Local people use this herb to cure diseases, such as stomach pain and high fever.
    • In Nepal, this herb is used to treat cough, skin problems, fever, indigestion, liver disease, jaundice, hepatitis, and metabolic problems.
    • This kutki root is used to treat the hepatic injury in traditional Tibetan medicine.
    • In Pakistan, this kutki root is a good remedy for cough, bronchial asthma, and the blood, kidney, skin, and liver-related problem.



Uses and Dosage of Kutki Root

The kutki is commonly available in the form of capsules, tablets, and powder. You can also purchase the dry kutki root. The kutki root is not easily soluble in water so that it is mostly given in the form of alcoholic extract.

Anyhow, the decoction of the kutki root is traditionally used for the various ailments. Moreover, this herb is pungent and bitter, so usually, it is given with the honey or some other herb to mask its taste.

Side Effects and Safety Precautions of Kutki Root

Side Effects

  • Kutki root is a well-known antihyperglycemic herb. The people who are suffering from diabetes or the low blood sugar level, it is best to consider with their doctor before consuming this herb.
  • Due to the absence of safety evidence of this herb, the pregnant and nursing mother should consider with their doctor before consuming this herb in any form, or it is better to avoid this herb.
  • The kutki root may cause headaches, dizziness, abdominal pain, vomiting, and difficulty breathing. If you are experiencing any one of these symptoms, you should immediately consider your doctor.
  • This herb may also cause anorexia, vomiting, diarrhea, rashes, and itches.


  • This herb is not suitable for kids, so you should avoid it.
  • Avoid the usage of this herb during pregnancy and breastfeeding.
  • Don’t use this herb as a replacement for regular medication and therapy.
  • If you have any health problems, or use any medicine for your health issue, or undergoing treatment, it is better to consider with your doctor before consuming this herb.
  • The cancer patients should use this herb carefully, or it’s better to take antineoplastic agents.
  • People who have some problems like lupus or multiple sclerosis; it is better to avoid the kutki root.
  • The person who is facing any recent surgical operation should avoid the usage of this herb.

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