Cow urine, also referred to as gomutra or gaumutra (Sanskrit: गोमूत्र Gōmūtra; cow urine) is used for therapeutic purposes in ancient Ayurvedic medicine. Urine of a pregnant cow is considered special; it is claimed to contain special hormones and minerals. While cow urine and cow dung has benefits as fertilizers, researchers debunk any other claim of curing diseases and consider it pseudo-science.
Claimed benefits and usage
In religious rituals
Some hindus claim that cow urine has a special significance as a medicinal drink. The sprinkling of cow urine is said to have a spiritual cleansing effect as well. Cattle were a basic economic unit in ancient India, and cows are holy for some Hindus and their slaughter is considered to be sin.
For pharmaceutical purposes
Cow urine is also used in Myanmar and Nigeria as a folk medicine. In Nigeria, a concoction of leaves of tobacco, garlic and lemon basil juice, rock salt and cow urine is used to treat convulsions in children. This has resulted in the death of several children from respiratory depression.
As a floor cleaner
A floor-cleaning fluid called Gaunyle is marketed by an organisation called Holy Cow Foundation. Maneka Gandhi, Women and Child Development Minister, has proposed that Gaunyle be used instead of Phenyl in government offices. In May 2015, Rajendra Singh Rathore, Medical and Health Minister of Rajasthan, inaugurated a ₹40 million (US$580,000) cow-urine refinery in Jalore. The refinery was set up by Parthvimeda Gau Pharma Pvt. Ltd. which produces a floor cleaner called Gocleaner.
In organic farming
Gomutra is used as a manure for production of rice. Jeevamrutha is a fertilizer made from a mixture of cow urine, cow dung, jaggery, pulse flour and rhizosphere soil. A mixture of gomutra, custard apple leaves and neem leaves after boiling is said to serve as a biopesticide.
A 1975 study on mice found that cow urine causes death in high doses. A similar 1976 study on dogs showed that repeated administration of cow urine concoction as used in Nigerian folk medicine, resulted in hypotension and tachypnea, and also death. A 2001 study found prions in detectable amount in the urine of cows suffering from bovine spongiform encephalopathy.
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