This week I want to incorporate a beginners ayurvedic series with my blog post on the ayurvedic herb Cassia. Cassia is well known in the ayurvedic community but commonly mis-called “neutral Henna”. However, Cassia is neither neutral nor is it henna. So why the confusion? Well both henna and cassia contain dye molecules that both strengthen, condition, and bind to your hair shaft. However, Cassia commonly known Senna Italica is a perennial herb from the Fabaceae family. Let’s learn a little bit more about Cassia and how to do a cassia gloss or full treatment in the video below!
Cassia in Ayurvedic Medicine
In ayurvedic medicine, different parts of the cassia plant such as leaves, flowers, roots, seeds and pods are used for the treatment of fever, stomach complaints, jaundice, skin disease, venereal diseases, and used as purgative. The leaves and seeds are used against intestinal worms and possess anti-inflammatory, analgesic, antineoplastic, and antiviral properties. The chemical constituents of Senna Italica are glycosides, tannins, flavonoids, carbohydrates, and sterols. The two most important active compounds found in cassia are anthraquinones and chrysophanic acid which are known to inhibit skin fungus, mite infections, bacterial and microbial diseases.
Cassia Obovata will naturally condition all textures of hair, adding luster, shine and supple definition. It’s also been used to thicken, color or highlight natural light hair color, improve scalp condition and eliminate dandruff.
Contrary to popular belief, cassia will stain light colored hair. The natural yellow compounds in chrysophanic acid will stain blonde or gray hair a golden or blondish hue depending on the length of time left on your hair. However, if you are brunette or black you will only reap the deep conditioning benefits of cassia.
How to prepare your Cassia
If you are new to Ayurveda, I recommend a cassia gloss; however, if you are an ayurvedic expert I recommend a full cassia mask. Check out the video for two easy recipes.