Showing posts with label Ayurvedic concepts. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Ayurvedic concepts. Show all posts

Ayurveda - The Therapeutic Use Of Ayurvedic Plants And Herbs

Table Of Contents


In Ayurveda, a vast variety of herbs are utilized to preserve balance and harmony so that excellent health may be achieved. 

  • Plants were often mixed to enhance bioavailability, decrease toxicity, and produce synergy. 
  • Although a significant variety of single medicines were utilized, multiplant formulations were and still are favored. 
  • However, few studies have been conducted to offer scientific evidence for these pairings, not least because to the difficulties in developing a proper technique to do so. 


When either the traditional three-spice or pungent mixture known as trikatu (tri: “three”; katu: “pungent”), consisting of Piper longum (long pepper), Piper nigrum (pepper), and Zingiber officinale (ginger), or the major alkaloid piperine of P. longum and P. nigrum, is added to for- mulations, it has been possible to show an increase in bioavailability. 

  • This idea has also been used to lowering the necessary dose of anti-TB medicines like rifampicin and other antibiotics like ciprofloxacin. 
  • Controlled studies have also shown that by adding small amounts of piperine to nutraceuticals like -carotene and curcumin, absorption of nutraceuticals like -carotene and curcumin can be increased severalfold in healthy volunteers—by 60 percent in the case of -carotene and 2000 percent in the case of 20 mg piperine to 2 g curcumin. 


Combining medications has been proven to be helpful in a few clinical trials. 

  • In osteoarthritis, frozen shoulder, and sciatica, combination treatment with Semecarpus anacardium (bhallatak), Dalbergia lanceolaria (gourakh), and Commiphora mukul (guggul) produced greater benefits than the individual medicines alone. 
  • Other examples include adding Bacopa monnieri to the combination of Inula racemosa and Commiphora mukul for heart disease treatment (“Cardiovascular drugs”), the combination of Gymnema sylvestre and Eugenia jambolana for diabetes (“Antidiabetic agents”), and the combination of Zingiber officinale and Commiphora mukul for arthritis treatment ( “Antirheumatic agents”). 

Any scientific research of Ayurvedic herbs would benefit tremendously from a review of early Ayurvedic writings' ideas, conceptions, and pronouncements on plant collecting, processing, combination, selection, and usage to determine how they align with modern scientific knowledge. 

  • Even a cursory glance into the history of Ayurveda and medication creation in ancient India, as well as some of the ideas employed in drug formulation, reveals that the ancient writings may teach us a lot. 

You may also want to read more about Ayurveda and Holistic Healing here.


Table Of Contents
Ayurveda's Use Of Medicinal Plants
Harvesting Ayurvedic Herbs
Processing Of Ayurvedic Herbs

Ayurveda's Use Of Medicinal Plants

The Ayurvedic formulary relies heavily on medicinal plants and herbs. 

Ayurveda describes the usage of over 1,700 different plants. 

  • It's worth reviewing the history of plant use—drug collection, selection, and evaluation—at this point. 
  • In ancient times, great care was taken to ensure the purity, safety, and effectiveness of the plants utilized. 

Plant chemical composition varies depending on soil, location, season, time of day, year, harvesting method, and subsequent processing. 

  • It's amazing how these elements were criminalized hundreds of years ago. 

  • The steps to be followed before a plant can be used as medicine are enumerated in the Kasyapa Samhita: 

    • plants must be cultivated on suitable soil in the appropriate season; 
    • they must be collected at the appropriate time, 
    • ensuring the absence of damage from heat, water, insects, stools, urine, and time; 
    • and they must be collected or grown in areas away from roadsides, cemeteries, and other such places where pollution and contamination may occur. 

Harvesting Ayurvedic Herbs 

The Caraka Samhita specifies that leaves should be gathered in the spring (March-April) and the rainy season (June-August) (July-September). 

This is supported by scientific data. Coughs, colds, asthma, and bronchitis are all treated by Adhatoda vasica leaves. 

  • The content of the major alkaloid, active principle, and bronchodilator vasicine was analyzed throughout the year and plotted, yielding a curve with two major peaks in March-April and July-September, corresponding to periods when the vasicine content was highest, demonstrating good correlation with Caraka's guidelines. 
  • Scholars debated the effectiveness of herbs and their actions often, with different viewpoints settled via observations on humans. 
  • Unfortunately, we no longer have access to the exact experimental procedures that were used. 

Processing Of Ayurvedic Herbs

The names of the plants to be utilized in different circumstances and the treatment to be followed have been set down as the final findings of debate and testing. 

Any concerns were addressed by testing on domestic animals due to the high respect for the safety of the medicines employed and the way in which they were to be handled. 

  • Processing was thought to be necessary to decrease or eliminate toxicity while simultaneously increasing bioavailability. 
  • Many hazardous or poisonous herbs are used in Ayurveda after they have been purified, or shodana. 
  • Aconitum tubers, for example, are often utilized in Ayurveda despite containing the poisonous alkaloid aconitine. 

Because the medication is treated or de-toxified before usage, this is feasible. 

  • When you boil Aconitum tubers in water, the poisonous aconitine is converted to aconine, which is less dangerous. 
  • Commiphora mukul gum resin is extensively used in Ayurveda for the treatment of arthritis, and it is typically prepared by boiling the resin in water or a triphala (or "three fruits") decoction before use (a mixture of Terminalia chebula, T. belerica, and Emblica officinalis). 
  • The crude material caused mild adverse effects such as skin rashes, diarrhea, and irregular menstruation during the development of Commiphora mukul as a hypolipidemic drug. 
  • The substance no longer produced skin rashes when it was cleansed in the conventional way by boiling and skimming.

You may also want to read more about Ayurveda and Holistic Healing here.

Ayurveda - What Are AYURVEDA'S ORIGINS?

Table Of Contents
Plants As Medicine
Ayurvedic System Of Medicine
Ayurveda Is An Upveda
Selection Of Ayurvedic Medicine

Plants As Medicine 

Plants have been utilized as medicines all throughout the globe since the dawn of humanity, and plant-based remedies have long been the basis of traditional cultures in dealing with health issues. 

A increasing discontent with current medications' inadequacies in some disease areas, particularly chronic diseases like arthritis and asthma, as well as their unpleasant iatrogenic consequences, has prompted a worldwide quest for alternative health-care methods. 

  • This dissatisfaction is coupled with a desire to reconnect to nature and adopt a more natural way of relating to the world. 
  • The quest has sparked global interest in the scientific confirmation of traditional plant-based therapies' therapeutic effectiveness. 

Ayurvedic System Of Medicine

Ayurveda, one of the most comprehensive and complete systems of medicine, originated in India approximately 3,000 years ago. 

Its holistic approach goes beyond the simple prescription of medicines. 

  • The goal of Ayurveda is twofold: to live a healthy, vigorous life and, in the case of illness, to recover. 
  • Disease is seen to be the lack of harmony, and Ayurveda is concerned with restoring harmony and therefore health. 
  • This is accomplished via a three-pronged strategy of lifestyle, food, and medication that is tailored to an individual's constitution and season. 

Health is a condition of complete physical, mental, spiritual, and social well-being, not only the absence of illness. 

Drugs are utilized in Ayurveda as part of the therapeutic method, and they may be of plant, mineral, or animal origin. 

Herbs, on the other hand, make up about 70% of the Ayurvedic materia medica. 

Ayurveda means "science or knowledge of life," with "life" meaning "Ayur" and "knowledge" or "science" meaning "knowledge" or "science." The Rig Veda, Yajur Veda, Sama Veda, and Atharva Veda are the first four Vedas. 

Ayurveda Is An Upveda

Ayurveda is regarded an auxiliary Veda (upveda) or a fifth Veda at times. 

The Vedas are a corpus of information that is said to have originated from a nonhuman (divine) source. 

  • Early sages and wise men, alarmed by the rising prevalence of illness, prayed to the almighty creator for assistance in reducing human suffering. 
  • The divine creator transmitted the science of Ayurveda to Indra through various intermediaries in the Caraka Samhita, and from Indra to sages such as Bharadwaja, Atri, and others, who then taught Ayurveda to their disciples; however, Dhanvantri received the science from Indra in the Sushruta Samhita. 

The earliest documented book of Ayurveda, known as the Caraka Samhita, which is generally dated to 700 BC, contains a description of the first convocation on preventative health and therapeutic methods to cure illness. 

  • The Sushruta Samhita, which deals with surgery, and Vagbhata's Astanga Hrdayam were the next important books. 
  • The so-called Greater Triad, or Brihattrayi, is made up of three physicians: Caraka, Sushruta, and Vagbhata. 

Selection Of Ayurvedic Medicine 

Ayurvedic medicines were selected via a process that included observation, experimentation, intuition, and scholarly debate. 

The intuitive aspect aided in the selection of the best plants, which were tested on domestic animals including cats, dogs, and cows. 

  • Discussion among academics improved their usage, and disagreements among scholars were settled via frequent meetings. 
  • The Caraka Samhita mentions similar gatherings in the Himalayan foothills. 
  • In each instance, the controversy was also addressed via human experimentation. 
  • A significant number of herbs with established therapeutic value developed from this lengthy period of trial and research on humans. 
  • The fruits of this exploration are currently accessible in the form of sutras, which are very short written texts.

You may also want to read more about Ayurveda and Holistic Healing here.

Ayurveda - What Is Roga Marga?



    Ayurveda recognizes three illness pathways (rogamargas), or three different degrees of disease manifestation in the body. 


    The ‘inner route' or antarmarga, which includes the digestive and respiratory systems, is the initial illness pathway. 

    • Although it is referred to as the "inner route," it is really the most superficial level at which illness may appear, making it relatively simple to cure. 
    • Vomiting, gastritis, abdominal bloating, constipation, diarrhoea, piles, coughing, dyspnoea, and fever are examples of disorders that appear on this level. 
    • Internal treatments such as ingestion, inhalation, and enema are often used. 

    Bahya Roga Marga Or Rogayana

    The bahya rogayana, or "outside route," is made up of the circulatory, lymphatic, and integumentary systems and is the second illness pathway. 

    • The outer route of illness is more difficult to cure since diseases in this pathway may be regarded conditions in the inner pathway that have been pushed deeper, into the blood, lymph, and skin, from the stomach and respiratory mucosa. 
    • Eczema, acne, boils, psoriasis, granuloma, warts, enlarged lymph nodes, oedema, and vascular disease are examples of diseases on this level. 
    • Internal treatments are usually used in conjunction with external therapies like svedana (‘diaphoresis') to treat the bahya rogayana. 

    Madhyama Roga Marga 

    The madhyama rogamarga, or ‘middle route,' is comprised of deeper, more difficult-to-reach tissues such as the neurological and endocrine systems, kidneys, heart, bones, and muscles. 

    • It is the deepest level at which an illness may show itself, and it is also the most difficult to cure.
    • The'middle route' is so named because it is wedged between the other two levels, making it difficult to reach. 
    • Paralysis, mental problems, seizures, wasting, osteoporosis, rheumatoid arthritis, renal failure, and heart disease are examples of diseases on this level. 
    • In most cases, a mix of internal and topical treatments is needed. 

    You may also want to read more about Ayurveda and Holistic Healing here.