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Neoformulations in Ayurveda - Gel
|by Dr. Yashoda Ranjwan|
The aim of Ayurveda is to maintain & promote health of normal individual&cure disease of sick person.Now a days there is increase in demand of herbal products not only for health care but also beauty care product. Gel is one of the beauty care product & also used in industries for many purposes like hair dyes, analgesics, toothpaste. These are semisolids systems, consisting of either suspensions made up of small inorganic particles or large organic molecules interpenetrated by liquid. Here the simple method to prepare the gel and parameters required for its standerdisation will be discussed.
A gel (from the lat. Gelu — freezing, cold, ice or gelatus — frozen, immobile) is a solid, jelly-like material that can have properties ranging from soft and weak to hard and tough. Gels are defined as a substantially dilute cross-linked system, which exhibits no flow when in the steady-state.  By weight, gels are mostly liquid, yet they behave like solids due to a three-dimensional cross-linked network within the liquid. It is the crosslinking within the fluid that gives a gel its structure (hardness) and contributes to the adhesive stick (tack). In this way gels are a dispersion of molecules of a liquid within a solid in which the solid is the continuous phase and the liquid is the discontinuous phase. Gels consist of a solid three-dimensional network that spans the volume of a liquid medium and ensnares it through surface tension effects. Hydrogel, Xerogel, Organogel and some naturally occurring animal gels are types of the gels. Simple method to prepare the Gel will be described below. Standard parameters to assure the quality of Gel like firmness, relaxation, swelling, adhesiveness, tack, stickiness, cohesiveness, rupture/burst and extensibility etc are required for quality assurance.
Composition of Gel
Gels consist of a solid three-dimensional network that spans the volume of a liquid medium and ensnares it through surface tension effects. This internal network structure may result from physical bonds (physical gels) or chemical bonds (chemical gels), as well as crystallites or other junctions that remain intact within the extending fluid. Virtually any fluid can be used as an extender including water (hydrogels), oil, and air (aerogel). Both by weight and volume, gels are mostly fluid in composition and thus exhibit densities similar to those of their constituent liquids. Edible jelly is a common example of a hydrogel and has approximately the density of water
Types of Gel
Hydrogel is a network of polymer chains that are hydrophilic, sometimes found as a colloidal gel in which water is the dispersion medium. Hydrogels are highly absorbent (they can contain over 99.9% water) natural or synthetic polymers. Hydrogels also possess a degree of flexibility very similar to natural tissue, due to their significant water content. Common uses for hydrogels include:
Common ingredients are e.g. polyvinyl alcohol, sodium polyacrylate, acrylate polymers and copolymers with an abundance of hydrophilic groups.
An organogel is a non-crystalline, non-glassy thermoreversible (thermoplastic) solid material composed of a liquid organic phase entrapped in a three-dimensionally cross-linked network. The liquid can be, for example, an organic solvent, mineral oil, or vegetable oil. The solubility and particle dimensions of the structurant are important characteristics for the elastic properties and firmness of the organogel. Often, these systems are based on self-assembly of the structurant molecules.. Organogels have potential for use in a number of applications, such as in pharmaceuticals, cosmetics, art conservation, and food.
Xerogel is a solid formed from a gel by drying with unhindered shrinkage. Xerogels usually retain high porosity (15-50%) and enormous surface area (150–900 m2/g), along with very small pore size (1-10 nm). When solvent removal occurs under hypercritical (supercritical) conditions, the network does not shrink and a highly porous, low-density material known as an aerogel is produced. Heat treatment of a xerogel at elevated temperature produces viscous sintering (shrinkage of the xerogel due to a small amount of viscous flow) and effectively transforms the porous gel into a dense glass.
Properties of Gel
Many gels display thixotropy - they become fluid when agitated, but resolidify when resting. In general, gels are apparently solid, jelly-like materials. By replacing the liquid with gas it is possible to prepare aerogels, materials with exceptional properties including very low density, high specific surface areas, and excellent thermal insulation properties.
Naturally Occurring Gels in Animal Kingdom
Some species secrete gels that are effective in parasite control. For example, the long-finned pilot whale secretes an enzymatic gel that rests on the outer surface of this animal and helps prevent other organisms from establishing colonies on the surface of these whales' bodies.
Application of Gel
Many substances can form gels when a suitable thickener or gelling agent is added to their formula. This approach is common in manufacture of wide range of products, from foods to paints and adhesives.
Process Of Making Gel
1. Water 2. Carbopav 3. Sodium Prophyl Paraffin 4. Sodium Methyl Paraffine 5. Tea (Tri Eethanol Arisine)
Standard Parameters for Gel
By measuring the force: deformation relationship & force required to rupture the gel, enough information can be obtained to classify gels into categories such as brittle, firm, weak, elastic etc. (Mitchell,1976)
Gel are mostly liquids but behave like solids. These are semisolid systems, consisting of either suspensions made up of small inorganic particles or large organic molecules interpenetrated by liquid here. Gels are used widely in beauty care products like soap, shampoo, hair gel, lipstick, under eye gel, also for medicinal purposes like capsule, suppositories, analgesics. Also used in corporate industries. As importance of gel is increasing now a days its standardization is must for quality assurance. All gels exhibit viscoelastic properties and thus a complete rheological description requires the measurement of parameters over several decades of time (Mitchell, 1976). However for quality control purposes generally only a single quantity is determined utilizing a well-established empirical procedure such as the “Bloom test” (British Standard BS 757:1975; AOAC 1986).
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