Air – how to use

In 2011, Rospotrebnadzor included cereal and swamp calamus in the list of plants containing potent, narcotic or poisonous substances (changes were made to SanPiN "Hygienic requirements for the safety and nutritional value of food products", partially overlapping the use of calamus in the food industry, but the grass known in different eras to most peoples continues to grow along the banks of rivers, lakes and swamps, pleasing the eye with its ἄκορος (unadorned), as Theophastus put it in the 3rd century BC in inflorescences.
Ugliness did not prevent Theophast and healers before and after him from appreciating antispasmodic, vasodilator, antimicrobial, analgesic (with the effect of local anesthesia), astringent, enveloping, sedative, reparative, hemostatic, diuretic and tonic properties, primarily calamus rhizomes.
These properties determine the fact that in folk medicine a very thick, branchy, white inside and yellowish-brown outside rhizome of calamus is used in the treatment of primarily the gastrointestinal tract. However, candied rhizomes were used in Russia as delicacies, without waiting for diseases.
It is curious that the calamus is brought to the European part of Russia by hordes of the Tatar horde, using the roots of calamus to purify water. Nowadays, the belief that calamus grows only along the banks of clean water bodies has not lost its relevance.

Household name: air, air root, sedge.
The bitter glycoside acorine contained in the rhizomes of calamus increases the excitability of
the endings of the taste nerves, enhances the reflex department of gastric juice, especially hydrochloric acid, increases the bile excretory function of the liver, gallbladder tone and diuresis. In addition, the rhizome of calamus has anti-inflammatory, wound healing, analgesic, soothing, antispasmodic, choleretic, diuretic, disinfectant, expectorant effects. Calamus extract lowers blood pressure.
The rhizome of calamus is included in the recipe of various medicinal teas – gastric, tea to stimulate appetite, etc.
In Eastern cultures, calamus is used as a seasoning for various dishes.

Production and composition

The roots of calamus are collected with a pitchfork, tearing them out of the water, only by the cold the roots gain full healing power. They are cleaned and dried in small pieces, as they are sold in a pharmacy, at a temperature of 30-35o, trying to dry as quickly as possible.
In the rhizomes of calamus, an essential oil was found, which is extracted by distillation with a yield of up to 4.5%.
In the rhizome of swamp calamus there is 2 – 6% of essential oil, which contains proazulene, terpenes and sosquiterpenes, azarone (has a toxic effect on the human body, especially the nervous system), ascorbic acid (up to 150 mg / 10), glycoside acorine, resins, phytoncides, tannins and bitter substances, organic acids, mucus.


Effects on doshas:VK-, P+.
Tastes: spicy, bitter, astringent.
The taste of PP is spicy.
Energy: warming, drying.


In aromatherapy, air is used for intoxication: to help with alcohol or drug poisoning and rejection of relevant diseases. Supporters of Ayurveda are sure that calamus contributes to the development of memory, intelligence and speech, helps with amnesia.
Helps cleanse the respiratory system, is used for chronic bronchitis.
Increases appetite.
Relieves migraine attacks and headaches.
Helps with fears and depressions.
Helps to overcome male and female impotence and infertility.
May help with impaired vision.

The aroma of calamus is also combined with spicy and oriental oils.
The rhizome of calamus is used for aromatic baths.


In cosmetics for the skin, calamus rhizomes and essential oil are used due to the ability to remove harmful metabolic products and affect the nerve endings of the skin, improving blood flow.
Calamus has an antimicrobial and anti-inflammatory effect to cleanse the skin. It can increase sexual desire.
Calamus leaves can also be used.

and hair

A decoction of calamus rhizome is used to rinse the hair after washing, with seborrhea and hair loss, can be used for preventive purposes.
Calamus root powder helps with dandruff.

In Ayurvedic cosmetics, calamus has always been famous as an effective remedy for hair loss. It is suitable for any hair. Calamus essential oil is easily and firmly absorbed into the skin, strengthening the hair roots. Gives hair shine, silkiness and a pleasant aroma. Improves blood circulation, stimulates the nutrition of the scalp and hair. Gives antiseptic protection, antifungal and antibacterial agent.

In a number of countries, it is customary to introduce bundles of calamus into the house to combat some types of parasites.
The powder obtained from the rhizomes is used to prepare toilet soap, powder, it is added to the tooth powder as an aromatic and disinfectant.

atas sdyav

In India, calamus essential oil (most likely prepared without chemical extraction) is traditionally used internally. but European followers of Ayurveda do not recommend this because of the substances included in the composition of the oil with a possible carcinogenic effect.
Calamus rhizome and preparations from it are not recommended for high acidity.