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Frequently Asked Questions

Q. What is an Asava?


Asava is an Ayurvedic liquid preparation made by soaking herbs in a solution of sugar or jaggery, for a specified period of time, during which it undergoes a process of (fermentation) generating alcohol and facilitating extraction of plant nutrients. The alcohol, so generated, also serves as a preservative. 

Q. Why do all asava preparations contain dhataki flowers (Woodfordia fruticosa)?

We use dried dhataki flowers to initiate fermentation during asava manufacturing. Woodfordia fruticosa or dhataki is a deciduous shrub native to Asia and Africa. According to Ayurveda, dried flowers of dhataki are traditionally used in asava preparations to initiate, facilitate and potentiate fermentation. Recent scientific findings[1] have demonstrated that dried flowers of dhataki are an abundant source of yeast cell colonies compared to fresh dhataki flowers and hence are one of the best natural fermentation initiators.

 

Q. Why do your asava products contain alcohol?

The alcohol, or more specifically, ethanol in our asava preparations is generated during the process of fermentation. Ethanol is an excellent solvent and has a broader extraction range compared to water or glycerin. The natural process of fermentation allows extraction of a wider range of plant nutrients from the herb than any other extraction method since the menstruum undergoes a gradient of rising alcohol levels.

 

In simple terms, this means that we can extract more water-soluble plant nutrients in the beginning of the process, and predominantly alcohol-soluble plant nutrients towards the end of the process as the alcohol levels rise. Alcohol also serves as a preservative contributing to longer shelf-life of asava formulations.

 

Q. Why are fermented extracts better than non-fermented extracts?

Fermentation offers several benefits such as removing undesirable sugars from plant materials, improving bioavailability of plant nutrients, and eliminating side effects such as gas and bloating. The process of fermentation allows pre-digestion of complex plant material, which means the plant molecules will already be broken down into smaller simple molecules that are easy to absorb even by people with weakened digestion or an imbalanced gut microbiota.

 

There are several other benefits of fermentation. To learn more visit Benefits of Asava Dosage Form.

 

Q. Are liquid formulations better than pills or capsules?

Liquids have certain advantages over pills or capsules. Liquid extracts have faster absorption rates and are more easily digestible. They are also easy to swallow compared to pills or capsules. Liquid formulations do not contain any binders or fillers (or gelatin, as in case of capsules) so the body does not need to break them down before absorbing nutrients. You can get more of the nutrients in a single dose of liquid extract which allows us to have smaller doses, compared to pills or capsules, to get the same amount of daily serving. Our asava liquid formulations have a very long shelf life, longer than shelf life of tablets or capsules.

 

Q. Where are BIO Dhamapur Farms products manufactured?

SVD Trading Company is located in Huntsville, Alabama, US and we have partnered with BIO Dhamapur Farms in Kolhapur, Maharashtra, India. Our current line of products is manufactured at the GMP-certified, Food and Drug Administration (Maharashtra State, India)-approved facility of BIO Dhamapur Farms in Kolhapur, India. The manufacturing facility is registered with the US Food and Drug Administration as a manufacturer of dietary supplement. SVD Trading Company is also a registered facility for dietary supplements with the US Food and Drug Administration.

 

Q. Are your products tested for heavy metals?

Yes, every batch of asava is tested for heavy metals including mercury, lead, cadmium and arsenic.

Q. What other tests are performed on your products?

Our products are tested for quality parameters as outlined by the Protocol for Testing of Ayurvedic, Siddha and Unani Medicine developed by the Central Council for Research in Ayurvedic Sciences. We also perform microbial testing for total bacterial and fungal count, and to confirm absence of certain pathogenic bacteria, to ensure safety of our consumers.

Q. Are your products tested on animals?

We do not test any of our products on animals.

 

Q. Are your products gluten free?

To the best of our knowledge, BIO Dhamapur Farms’ asavas are free of gluten, soy and dairy. The manufacturing facility is used solely for producing herbal fermented extracts made with inherently gluten-free ingredients. However, some of our raw materials are sourced from local farms other than BIO Dhamapur Farms’s own farmlands and it is likely that some of them might be growing gluten-containing grains.

 

Q. Do asavas contain sugar?

 

Cane sugar is added to the formulation at the beginning of the manufacturing process. However, the added sugar is broken down by the process of fermentation leaving behind only trace amounts in the final product.

 

 

[1] Mallya Suma V, Admani Mallikarjun and Ravikrishna Aithal. Relevance of Dhataki Flowers in Fermentation Procedure, Pharmaceutico-Analytical and Microbiological Study. Vol 3 Issue 4. Nov 2019. Journal of Natural & Ayurvedic Medicine ISSN: 2578-4986

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