Showing posts with label Herb Harvesting. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Herb Harvesting. Show all posts

Ayurveda - AYURVEDIC DRUG EVALUATION HISTORY.



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.