animated goddess mdbs banner animated goddess

MoonDragon's Health & Wellness
Nutrition Basics


(Ativisha / Cao Wu / Tsao Wu)

For Informational Use Only
For more detailed information contact your health care provider
about options that may be available for your specific situation.

  • Aconitum Heterophyllum Description
  • Aconitum Heterophyllum Uses, Health Benefits & Scientific Evidence
  • Aconitum Heterophyllum Dosage Information
  • Aconitum Heterophyllum Safety, Cautions & Interactions
  • Aconitum Heterophyllum Supplements & Products

  • aconitum heterophyllum plant



    Even though Aconitum heterophyllum belongs to the aconitum family (Ranunculaceae or Buttercup family), it is non-toxic if used properly. In Ayurvedic medicine it is used for children experiencing fever and diarrhea. The root is the main part of this plant that is used. The root has analgesic, tonic, astringent, stomachic, anti-periodic, aphrodisiac, and sedative properties, it also slows the heart rate. This herb has many different names to go by: Aconitum heterophyllum, Ativisha, Cau wu, Tsao wu, Graveloens, Dill Seed, Persil des marais, Bazrul Shibbat, Sowa, shih lo and yes, there is more. Please do not let the many names confuse you, the only reason there is so many names is because people from all over the world use this herb, therefore different people different names. Aconitum heterophyllum can be found in many different Ayurvedic and TCM formulas.

    aconitum heterophyllum


    This perennial plant thrives in most soils (light sandy, medium loam and heavy clay) and in the shade of trees and is usually found on humus-rich soils in the alpine and subalpine zones in the forests in East Asia and Western Himalayas at an altitude from 7500 feet to about 9500 feet (2300 to 2900 meters). It is suitable in neutral and basic (alkaline) ph soils. It can grow in semi-shade (as found in light, dappled shaded woodland areas) or no shade (full sun). It prefers moist soil. It will grow to a height of 5 feet with flowering from August to September. The seeds ripen from September to October and are pollinated by bees.

    This plant is so tough it even grows marvelously in heavy clay soils and well in the open woodlands. Most of all it prefers a moist soil which contains the characteristic of calcium carbonate, calcium, or limestone. Edible parts of the plant are leaves and roots, cooked properly. However, it should be treated and used with great care due to the poisonous nature of this genus.

    Other plants of this genus (a group of species exhibiting similar characteristics) seem to be immune to the rabbits and deer for they do not want to eat it. The Ativisha (Aconitum heterophylum) has small, yellowish-white, bulbous roots, which are shaped like a large bud about four to six times that of a jasmine bud. Part of the root crosses over and is milkey white with four black dots like banana seeds. The roots of this plant are extensively collected from the wild for medicinal use and the species is becoming much rarer in many areas of its range. The root is best harvested in the autumn as soon as the plant dies down and is dried for later use. This plant has many green leaves and grows as a greedy plant, inhibiting the growth of nearby species. The main place this herb is found is in sub-alpine and alpine regions; Himalayas from Indus to Kumaon.


    The seed is best sown as soon as it is ripe in a cold frame. The seed can be stratified and sown in spring but will then be slow to germinate. When large enough to handle, prick the seedlings out into individual pots and grow them on in a cold frame for their first winter. Plant them out in late spring or early summer. Division - best done in spring but it can also be done in autumn. Another report says that division is best carried out in the autumn or late winter because the plants come into growth very early in the year.


    Known hazards of Aconitum heterophyllum: The whole plant is highly toxic - simple skin contact has caused numbness in some people. One report says that this plant does not contain the toxic alkaloid aconitine, and so is not poisonous. It does, however, still contain an intensely bitter alkaloid.

    For more information about Aconitum plants, see Nutrition Basics: Aconite-Monkshood Herbal Information,

    aconitum heterophyllum roots



    The dried root is analgesic, anti-inflammatory, antiperiodic, aphrodisiac, astringent, cholagogue, febrifuge and tonic. It is used in India in the treatment of dyspepsia, diarrhea and coughs. It is also used in Tibetan medicine, where it is said to have a bitter taste and a cooling potency. It is used to treat poisoning from scorpion or snake bites, the fevers of contagious diseases and inflammation of the intestines. The root is best harvested in the autumn as soon as the plant dies down and is dried for later use. This is a very poisonous plant and should only be used with extreme caution and under the supervision of a qualified practitioner.

    Today Aconitum heterophyllum is used in cases of diarrhea, liver disorders, hemorrhoids, edema, dysentery, inflammatory infections with cough, cold, flu, or dyspepsia and is a mild diuretic. It stimulates the flow of breast milk in nursing mothers and when taken regularly by nursing mothers, helps prevent colic in their babies. It is also used to treat headaches caused from eating excessive amounts of greasy foods, thirst associated with fever, yellowish sclera (white outer coat enclosing the eyeball), nausea, vomiting, throat pain, and lung and eye inflammation. The root is also used for treating digtestive disorders such as anorexia, piles, diarrhea, vomiting and worms. It is said to help revitalize sexual desire and reduce obesity. The fried root is analgesic, anti-inflammatory, aphrodisiac, astringent, cholagogue, febrifuge, and tonic. It is used in India in the treatment of dyspepsia, diarrhea and coughs. Used in Tibetan medicine, where it is said to have a bitter taste and cooling potency. Also used to treat poisoning from scorpion or snake bites, the fevers of contagious diseases and inflammation of the intestines. This herb is just wonderful in many afflictions. The scientists and pharmacists have also found that Acontum hterophyllum has also been useful in the following diseases; Abdominal Distention, Amenorrhoea, Amnesia, Anorexia Nervosa, Bronchitis, Colic, Common Cold, Dysmenorrhea, Fevers, Flatulence, Flu and Halitosis (bad breath).

    The seeds of this plant are also used in medicine, mainly as a stimulant, aromatic, emmenaguogue, galactagogue, stomachic, carminative, antipyretic and anathemmatic. Along with antispasmodics they relieve period pain. They are also useful in indigestion (especially stress-related), hyperacidity, hiccup and abdominal pain in children and adults. Chewing the seeds removes bad breath. Research has also established that the essential oil has antibacterial properties, which inhibit the growth of harmful intestinal bacteria.



    The recommended doses of Aconitum heterophyllum depend on the condition that is being treated. For example; for children with cough, fever, vomiting, often the plain powder of the tuberous root mixed with honey is given. Its dosage is dependent on age. The powder is applied to the tongue. Different formulations of Aconitum heterophyllum can be toxic, so as always, please see your health care provider or qualified herbalist before using and always go by the dosage provided. Do not use old herbs as they lose their potency.



    The whole Aconitum heterophyllum plant is highly toxic, even simple skin contact can cause numbness in people with sensitive skin. In large doses, this herb can cause constipation. Toxic overdoses will cause parasthesia, dry mouth, bradycardia, and in extreme cases, coma. Aconitum heterophyllum is a very poisonous plant and should only be used with extreme caution and under the supervision of a qualified practitioner. As always, when you buy a product alwyays follow the instructions.

    One report says that this plant does not contain the toxic alkaloid aconitine, and so is not poisonous. It does, however, still contain an intensely bitter alkaloid.


  • Aconitum Heterophyllum Herbal Products


    FTC Advertising & Affilate Disclosure: This website has an affiliate relationship with certain merchants selling products and we recieve commissions from those sales to help support this website. Any products listed here are not listed by any rating system. We do not rate any product or post any feedback about products listed here. We leave this to the individual merchants to provide. We do not provide product prices or shopping carts since you do not order these products directly from us, but from the merchant providing the products. We only provide the link to that merchant webpage with all related product information and pricing. The products are listed here by merchant, product use, quantity size or volume, and for nutritional supplements - dosage per unit. All product descriptions are provided by the merchant or manufacturer and are not our descriptive review of the product. We do not endorse any specific product or attest to its effectiveness to treat any health condition or support nutritional requirements for any individual.


    Sorry, No products are available through our merchants for this herb. Unable to locate a commercial source.

    See Nutrition Basics: Aconite (Monkshood) Herbal Information for some product suggestions.

    MoonDragon's Womens Health Index

    | A | B | C | D | E | F | G | H | I | J | K | L | M | N | O | P | Q | R | S | T | U | V | W | X | Y | Z |

    Health & Wellness Index


    Allspice Leaf Oil
    Angelica Oil
    Anise Oil
    Baobab Oil
    Basil Oil
    Bay Laurel Oil
    Bay Oil
    Benzoin Oil
    Bergamot Oil
    Black Pepper Oil
    Chamomile (German) Oil
    Cajuput Oil
    Calamus Oil
    Camphor (White) Oil
    Caraway Oil
    Cardamom Oil
    Carrot Seed Oil
    Catnip Oil
    Cedarwood Oil
    Chamomile Oil
    Cinnamon Oil
    Citronella Oil
    Clary-Sage Oil
    Clove Oil
    Coriander Oil
    Cypress Oil
    Dill Oil
    Eucalyptus Oil
    Fennel Oil
    Fir Needle Oil
    Frankincense Oil
    Geranium Oil
    German Chamomile Oil
    Ginger Oil
    Grapefruit Oil
    Helichrysum Oil
    Hyssop Oil
    Iris-Root Oil
    Jasmine Oil
    Juniper Oil
    Labdanum Oil
    Lavender Oil
    Lemon-Balm Oil
    Lemongrass Oil
    Lemon Oil
    Lime Oil
    Longleaf-Pine Oil
    Mandarin Oil
    Marjoram Oil
    Mimosa Oil
    Myrrh Oil
    Myrtle Oil
    Neroli Oil
    Niaouli Oil
    Nutmeg Oil
    Orange Oil
    Oregano Oil
    Palmarosa Oil
    Patchouli Oil
    Peppermint Oil
    Peru-Balsam Oil
    Petitgrain Oil
    Pine-Long Leaf Oil
    Pine-Needle Oil
    Pine-Swiss Oil
    Rosemary Oil
    Rose Oil
    Rosewood Oil
    Sage Oil
    Sandalwood Oil
    Savory Oil
    Spearmint Oil
    Spikenard Oil
    Swiss-Pine Oil
    Tangerine Oil
    Tea-Tree Oil
    Thyme Oil
    Vanilla Oil
    Verbena Oil
    Vetiver Oil
    Violet Oil
    White-Camphor Oil
    Yarrow Oil
    Ylang-Ylang Oil
    Healing Baths For Colds
    Herbal Cleansers
    Using Essential Oils


    Almond, Sweet Oil
    Apricot Kernel Oil
    Argan Oil
    Arnica Oil
    Avocado Oil
    Baobab Oil
    Black Cumin Oil
    Black Currant Oil
    Black Seed Oil
    Borage Seed Oil
    Calendula Oil
    Camelina Oil
    Castor Oil
    Coconut Oil
    Comfrey Oil
    Evening Primrose Oil
    Flaxseed Oil
    Grapeseed Oil
    Hazelnut Oil
    Hemp Seed Oil
    Jojoba Oil
    Kukui Nut Oil
    Macadamia Nut Oil
    Meadowfoam Seed Oil
    Mullein Oil
    Neem Oil
    Olive Oil
    Palm Oil
    Plantain Oil
    Plum Kernel Oil
    Poke Root Oil
    Pomegranate Seed Oil
    Pumpkin Seed Oil
    Rosehip Seed Oil
    Safflower Oil
    Sea Buckthorn Oil
    Sesame Seed Oil
    Shea Nut Oil
    Soybean Oil
    St. Johns Wort Oil
    Sunflower Oil
    Tamanu Oil
    Vitamin E Oil
    Wheat Germ Oil


  • MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics Index
  • MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: Amino Acids Index
  • MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: Antioxidants Index
  • MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: Enzymes Information
  • MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: Herbs Index
  • MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: Homeopathics Index
  • MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: Hydrosols Index
  • MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: Minerals Index
  • MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: Mineral Introduction
  • MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: Dietary & Cosmetic Supplements Index
  • MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: Dietary Supplements Introduction
  • MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: Specialty Supplements
  • MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: Vitamins Index
  • MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: Vitamins Introduction


  • MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: 4 Basic Nutrients
  • MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: Avoid Foods That Contain Additives & Artificial Ingredients
  • MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: Is Aspartame A Safe Sugar Substitute?
  • MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: Guidelines For Selecting & Preparing Foods
  • MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: Foods That Destroy
  • MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: Foods That Heal
  • MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: The Micronutrients: Vitamins & Minerals
  • MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: Avoid Overcooking Your Foods
  • MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: Phytochemicals
  • MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: Increase Your Consumption of Raw Produce
  • MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: Limit Your Use of Salt
  • MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: Use Proper Cooking Utensils
  • MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: Choosing The Best Water & Types of Water


  • MoonDragon's Nutrition Information Index
  • MoonDragon's Nutritional Therapy Index
  • MoonDragon's Nutritional Analysis Index
  • MoonDragon's Nutritional Diet Index
  • MoonDragon's Nutritional Recipe Index
  • MoonDragon's Nutrition Therapy: Preparing Produce for Juicing
  • MoonDragon's Nutrition Information: Food Additives Index
  • MoonDragon's Nutrition Information: Food Safety Links
  • MoonDragon's Aromatherapy Index
  • MoonDragon's Aromatherapy Articles
  • MoonDragon's Aromatherapy For Back Pain
  • MoonDragon's Aromatherapy For Labor & Birth
  • MoonDragon's Aromatherapy Blending Chart
  • MoonDragon's Aromatherapy Essential Oil Details
  • MoonDragon's Aromatherapy Links
  • MoonDragon's Aromatherapy For Miscarriage
  • MoonDragon's Aromatherapy For Post Partum
  • MoonDragon's Aromatherapy For Childbearing
  • MoonDragon's Aromatherapy For Problems in Pregnancy & Birthing
  • MoonDragon's Aromatherapy Chart of Essential Oils #1
  • MoonDragon's Aromatherapy Chart of Essential Oils #2
  • MoonDragon's Aromatherapy Tips
  • MoonDragon's Aromatherapy Uses
  • MoonDragon's Alternative Health Index
  • MoonDragon's Alternative Health Information Overview
  • MoonDragon's Alternative Health Therapy Index
  • MoonDragon's Alternative Health: Touch & Movement Therapies Index
  • MoonDragon's Alternative Health Therapy: Touch & Movement: Aromatherapy
  • MoonDragon's Alternative Therapy: Touch & Movement - Massage Therapy
  • MoonDragon's Alternative Health: Therapeutic Massage
  • MoonDragon's Holistic Health Links Page 1
  • MoonDragon's Holistic Health Links Page 2
  • MoonDragon's Health & Wellness: Nutrition Basics Index
  • MoonDragon's Health & Wellness: Therapy Index
  • MoonDragon's Health & Wellness: Massage Therapy
  • MoonDragon's Health & Wellness: Hydrotherapy
  • MoonDragon's Health & Wellness: Pain Control Therapy
  • MoonDragon's Health & Wellness: Relaxation Therapy
  • MoonDragon's Health & Wellness: Steam Inhalation Therapy
  • MoonDragon's Health & Wellness: Therapy - Herbal Oils Index

  • Starwest Botanicals

    HerbsPro Supplement Store


    Up to 70% Off Bath & Beauty - evitamins


 Herbs, Foods, Supplements, Bath & Body

    Chinese Herbs Direct

    Ayurvedic Herbs Direct

    Pet Herbs Direct

    ShareASale Merchant-Affiliate Program


    A website map to help you find what you are looking for on's Website. Available pages have been listed under appropriate directory headings.