Qustul Hindi (Costus Root)


‘Qust (Costus) is of two types:

  1. Hindee (Indian) – which is black, and
  2. Bahree which is white.

Qust al Hindee is hotter than al Bahree.”

The plant of  Qust, which is known as costus is two meter in length and creeps on the ground. It is generally found in the marshy and wet places along the rivers at the heights up to 5000 fts. These plants are found extensively in north west and north east sub Himalayan regions along the course of rivers. The Plant bears big serrated leaves, but the roots are being used for medicinal purpose. The roots are collected in the month of September and October. These are cut into small pieces and sold in the market.

Morphologically these look like liquorice roots but are very much fragrant. The labourers working on the hills used to prepare this to ward off the cold and it is a nutritive tonic.

The Excellence of Qust and Hijaamah.

 Hazrat Anas Bin Malik رضي الله عنه says that

Nabi صلى الله عليه وسلم said

Wet Cupping (الحجامة) and white costus (القسط البحرى) (Qust Al Bahri) are the best of your treatments.
[Musnad Ahmed: 12906]

“You should not torture your children by treating tonsillitis by pressing the tonsils or the palate with the finger, but use incense.”

[Sahih Al Bukhari Vol. 7, Book 71, Hadith 599.]

Qist al Hindee is used when hot medicine is needed for treatment, and al Bahree was described as milder .

For Throat infection and Pleurisy

Ummi Qays bint Mihsan  رضي الله عنها  narrates:

“I brought my son to the Messenger of Allah  صلى الله عليه وسلم  while I had compressed his uvula for its swelling. He  صلى الله عليه وسلم  said,:

“Why do you afflict your children [hurt them] by squeezing for a swelling in the Uvula? Apply this Indian aloes wood, for it contains seven types of remedies, among them being a remedy for pleurisy. It is applied through the nose for a swelling of the uvula poured into the side of the mouth for pleurisy.”

[Sunan Abi Dawood in Kitaab At Tibb Book 28, Hadith 3868. Classed as Sahih by Sh. Al Albani (rahimullah)]

Abu Dawood رضي الله عنه added “By Aloeswood he meant Costus.”

Ibn Hajar Al Asqalani said concerning pleurisy that “it is a hot swelling that appears in the membrane covering the ribs.”

Al Imaam Ahmad and the authors of the Sunnan collected a Hadeeth on the authority of Jaabir رضي الله عنه  that the Messenger of Allaah – صلى الله عليه وسلم – said:

“If a child is inflicted with tonsillitis or a headache, then let his mother take al Qist al Hindee, scrub it with water and let him inhale it as droplets through his nostrils.”

 Narrated by Hazrat Jabir Bin Abdullah رضي الله عنه

Once Nabi صلى الله عليه وسلم  come to his home, & saw a child who was  having bleeding from mouth & nose. Nabi صلى الله عليه وسلم  asked about it? Hazrat A’isha رضي الله عنها replied that the child was suffering from throat infection(Azrah), Nabi صلى الله عليه وسلم  said, Alas! ladies, you use to kill your children like this, In future, any children gets infection in throat or headache rub dark costus & make the child lick. Hazrat A’isha رضي الله عنها did as said, & the child became healthy.
[Musnad Abi-Yaa’la: 19125]

Hazrat Zaid Bin Arqam رضي الله عنه says that Nabi صلى الله عليه وسلم advised,

 As a treatment for pleurisy (الجنب ذات) (Zaatul Janb), Mememcylon (ورس) (Warss), Costus (قسط) (Qust), & olive oil (زيت) (Zait) & take at one side of mouth (يُلَدُّ).
[Ibn Ma-jah: 3596; Book. 31; In Eng vol. 4; Book. 31, Hadees. 3467]

Means the preparation should be taken at the side of the mouth to which side the problem in the body is, means if the problem is the right side of the body then take the preparation in the right side of the mouth.

Maimun Abu Abdullah said:

“I heard Zaid Bin Arqam رضي الله عنه says that Rasoolullahصلى الله عليه وسلم  ordered us to use white costus (القسط البحرى) & olive oil (زيت) for pleurisy (ذات الجنب)
[Tirmizi: 2223; Book. 28; English vol: 4; Book. 2; Hadees. 2079]

Costus used after menses

It was narrated from Hafsah from Umm Atiyyah رضي الله عنها from Nabi صلى الله عليه وسلم  , that He  صلى الله عليه وسلم 

granted a concession to the woman whose husband has died, allowing her to use costus (قسطا) and Azfar when purifying herself following her menses.
[An-Nasa’i: 3542; Book. 27; Eng vol. 4; Book. 27, Hadees. 3572]

Qust will be used in Jannah.

It was narrated by Abu Huraira (radhi Allahu anhu) that Allah’s Messenger  صلى الله عليه وسلم   said:

“The first group of people who will enter Paradise, will be glittering like the full moon and those who will follow them, will glitter like the most brilliant star in the sky. They will not urinate, relieve nature, spit, or have any nasal secretions. Their combs will be of gold, and their sweat will smell like musk. The aloes-wood will be used in their centers [as a fuel]. Their wives will be Houris. All of them will look alike and will resemble their father Adam (in statute), sixty cubits tall.”

[Sahih Al Bukhari Vol. 4, Book 55, Hadith 544]

Ibn-al-Qayyim states   it contains different therapeutic advantages.

  • It expels the phlegm and checks its excessive production.
  • It is effective in common cold and corhyza.
  • It is a good tonic for stomach and liver.
  • It is an antidote for poisons,
  • Useful in Quadrant fevers.
  • It removes the stains on the face if applied with honey and water.
  • Galen suggests it in the cases of Tetanus and intestinal parasites.

Imam Zahbi says:

  • It is useful in paralysis
  •  Increases the libido,
  • Is an antidote for snake poison
  •  Its oil is effective in back pain

Masih says :

  • Qust is a good tonic for all organs of the body
  • A good carminative
  • An anti inflammatory
  •  Effective against pleurisy.

Doctors have mentioned that from the benefits of al Qist are:

  • It eases the menstrual flow.
  • It eases the flow of urine.
  • It kills worms in the bowels.
  • It repels poison.
  • It repels fever.
  • It heats the stomach.
  • It increases sexual desire.
  • It removes facial spots.

An oil prepared by Qust and olive oil

  •  Is effective against Alopecia and
  •  Tones up the body.
  • It is effective against T.Versicolor if applied with water on the affected parts.
  • It is a good remedy for freckles and chloasma if applied on face, with vinegar
  •  It is effective in Ringworm.

The modern researches suggest:

  • It reduces Phlegm
  • Treats Obesity
  •  It is a Blood purifier,
  • Is an Antiseptic
  •  Increases the cutaneous circulation.
  • Heals wounds when mixed with honey and salt
  •  Used in Dandruff, freekles, chloasma and Ringworm.
  • It is a good insect repellant. Hence, might be used to keep off the insects from the clothes.

Internally it is used:

  • expectorant,
  • anti-spasmodic
  • Neurotonic (strengthens and relaxes nerves),
    • Treats Paralysis, facial Palsy and Neurasthenia, Parkinsons
    • Remedies ear  aches
    • Relieves migraines
    • Revives Thyroid gland
    • Good for Colds, Flu, Coughs ,Bronchitis, Bronchial Asthma,
    • Lowers blood Pressure, strengthens the heart, relieves chest pains
    • Beneficial for Stomach, Spleen and Liver and  Kidney
    • Treats Jaundice and Ascites
    • Useful for Liver Cirrhosis and Viral hepatitis
    • Disintegrates stones
    • Helps against Urinary cramps and eases urinary flow
    • Eases menstruation
    • Treats Prostrate cancer
    • Strenghtens Potency
    • Relieves Low Back Pain and other Joint Pains
    • Treats Sciatica and Tetanus
    • Removes freckles, white liver  and other skin marks
    • Treats Alopecia
    • Kills worms
    • Expels toxins
    • Helps treat Magic and Jinn when burned as an incense.

Qustul hindi dosage and method of using:
Is a potent medicine that is hot in nature. 
Not to be taken regularly.
Only use when necessary.

Dosage 1 tsp Qustul hindi powder mixed with 3 tsp honey
Always mix Qustul hindi powder:honey in 1:3 ratio

Qustul hindi is very bitter, so you will want to mix it with honey.

Very effective for tonsillitis, sinusitis, rhinitis.
Used as oil
(Qustul hindi powder infused into olive oil for 30-40 days in a dark place)

Method of use as described in Hadith

Qustul hindi oil
Apply 3-5 drops of the oil in each nostril while lying back 2 xs dly
The more inflamed the tonsils or sinuses are the more the burning sensation will be felt. If the burning is intolerable, then apply 1 drop on  the finger and tub into the nostril 5-7xs dly.

Qustul hindi powder
For pleurisy and other lung problems
Place the mixture in the buccal (between the inner cheek and gums) and allow to dissolve. This results in direct absorption into the blood stream without having to go through the digestive system. And quicker response to treatment.

Results experienced almost immediately or within 3-5days. May not need to continue for longer than this. In severe cases 10 days max.

Qustul hindi has the following properties
Blood thinning
Anti infective
Blood pressure lowering

It should not be used together with medications with these effects.

For those with low blood pressure or anaemia, and for children, Qustul Bahri may be more suitable as it is milder than Qustul hindi

Dosage of Qustul Bahri
1 tablespoon Qustul bahri with 3 tablespoons honey to place in the buccal  for absorption.

Qustul bahri is not available in oil form.