We all know how rare is Shilajit, but why? Whether we talk about its natural production, collection from high-altitude mountains, extraction, or purification to make it edible, you can assume it is an extremely hardworking, painstaking, and time-consuming procedure. In fact, purifying this natural product is one of the essential and most challenging stages because, in Ayurveda, no one must consume Shilajit without purification. Only cleaned and filtered Shilajit, also called Shudh Shilajit, is considered safe for consumption.
Why Should Shilajit Be Purified?
Shilajit is collected from mountains, primarily Himalayas, and is oozed out of the rocks through the natural decomposition process. It is flooded with contaminants, harmful heavy metals, and other impurities such as dirt, soil, stones, etc. Non-purified and raw Shilajeet is inedible, and to make it eatable, purification is done by a variety of methods, for instance, vaporisation, Triphala decoction, centrifugation, thermal evaporation method, etc.
Another reason to make Shilajit undergo extensive purification is to improve its therapeutic effects and medicinal value. The effectiveness and potency of Shilajit’s curative properties strongly depend on the cleaning technology chosen for purification. With ineffective and improper cleansing, you will see Shilajit losing its beneficial traits, physical characteristics, and taste to zero.
Last but not least, purification is necessary to kill the health-damaging bacteria and microbes found in raw Shilajit. In short, ayurvedic purification tends to disinfect the Shilajit, as well.
4 Best Purification Methods for Shilajit
- Triphala Decoction/Dashmool Decoction
The most commonly followed technique for black resin shilajit purification is Triphala decoction which takes 3-4 days to complete. The very first step of this purification process is to prepare Triphala decoction:
- Take 1kg of Triphala powder and 64L water. Make a well-mixed blend in an iron pot.
- Turn on the stove and place the pot on a low flame to boil the mixture.
- Take it off the heat when you find approx. ¼ of the water of the total mix remaining.
- Filter the Triphala mixture.
Now, move on to purifying the Shilajit with Triphala decoction:
- Take a large bowl/pot and put freshly prepared Triphala decoction, followed by adding 1500 grams of Shilajit in small pieces. Let the Shilajit soak for a day (24 hours).
- Once soaked, put the pot back on the stove for reheating the mixture.
- As soon as Shilajit pieces dissolve due to heat, they will start floating on the surface of Triphala decoction.
- Separate the melted Shilajit from the surface.
- Heat the separated Shilajit again on low flame to remove the excessive fluid.
- Keep cooking till the mixture gets thicker.
- Off the flame and leave it to dry in the sun.
This processed and Triphala-mixed shudh shilajit powder will appear grey and taste bitter. This purification method not only gives you pure Shilajit but is also mixed with an extra boost of medicinal herbs.
- Thermal Evaporation
Thermal evaporation process is one of the most appreciated methods for its time-saving and cost-efficient properties. It is chosen for purifying the most contaminated resin. Evaporation is, undoubtedly, a cheap method, but it doesn’t ask you to compromise on the purity of Shilajit and can be mined in massive volumes. On the contrary, this process of obtaining hot water purified shilajit has a significant drawback of affecting the healing properties of Shilajit, making it lose its potency and effectiveness.
How to purify raw shilajit? The process starts with mixing raw, uncleaned Shilajit in water and letting it dissolve to provide a certain consistency with uniformity. This solution is filtered to get rid of all the contaminants. The purified shilajit extract is exposed to a high temperature between 80°C - 90°C to evaporate the water.
- Altai Method
In comparison to Shilajit collected from various places, Altai mountains Shilajit (obtained from the Altai Mountains) is categorised cleaner with lesser impurities. A traditional “water bath” technique, where evaporation is a major phase, is used to purify Altai Shilajit resin. The procedure consists of the following steps:
- Put the raw Shilajit inside a particular container.
- Immerse the container in cold water to harden the Shilajit.
- Once hardened, cut the top-most/surface layer.
- Put the container (with the cut layer) in a water bath for 40-50 minutes, evaporating the moisture and leaving an oily broth behind to be collected.
- Place the broth into the raw Shilajit, which has been cooled down to room temperature.
- Mix it thoroughly.
- Within two weeks (approx.), the Shilajit dissolved in herbs starts rising to the top, making a separate layer. Simultaneously, the impurities settle at the bottom of the container.
- The free-of-impurities Shilajit is ready to be collected from the surface.
- Now, take wooden trays slathered with beeswax and spread the purified shilajit extract.
- Cover the trays with gauze and place them in the open air to eliminate remaining moisture from the shilajit purified extract with altai method.
Although it is an incredibly arduous and lengthy procedure, only this method can truly preserve all the Shilajeet medicinal and nutritional benefits along with delivering a wholly purified product.
How to purify shilajit with centrifuging? This method uses a special device called a centrifuge, rotating at ultra-high speed. It works on the principle of centrifugal force for separating the filth and inhomogeneous contaminants from the pure Shilajit content, depending on the density. The best part is that it needs no heat, saving your Shilajit from losing its potency.
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