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Ayurveda Therapies in India

Ayurveda Therapies in India

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Published by Punarnava Ayurveda
Learn about various Ayurveda therapies and the medicines at Punarnava Ayurveda, the best Ayurveda centre in India.
Learn about various Ayurveda therapies and the medicines at Punarnava Ayurveda, the best Ayurveda centre in India.

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Published by: Punarnava Ayurveda on Jun 24, 2010
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01/29/2011

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METALS & AYURVEDA
PUNARNAVA AYURVEDA
* This Article is a Free Download. Any tampering with or misuse of a part orwhole of information produced herein will not be entertained. The contents of this article can be accessed, printed and downloaded in an unaltered formwith copyright acknowledged for a non-commercial use and not for a directcommercial use.
Punarnava AyurvedaPage 1 of 4
 
METALS & AYURVEDA
Basics
: A verse in
aSTAGgahRdayam
introduces the wholeworld as a pharmacopoeia that rests on the applicatoryacumen of the physician. It says that there is nothing in thisworld, not even sand and dust, that is non-medicinal. Thisconcept is rooted in the understanding of the constitutionalmake-up of everything that is “being”, as caused by the fivegreat Elements. The body, the plants, the metals and the minerals are allmade of these in proportional variations. Thus we see good physicians usingplants, precious stones and cow’s urine with equal regard and efficacy. Thereis only one category of things that is available in the world – that is medicinal.Metals, like plants, thus become part of Ayurveda pharmacopoeia.
Logic:
Paracelsus, a Swiss physician, said in the 16
th
century: “The right dose differentiates between a poisonand a remedy”. Ayurveda too advocates the same aproperly used poison acts as ambrosia and improperly-usedambrosia acts as a poison. In the context of mercury, it istold that a pure sample kills death and fever, while an impure one ispoisonous. Procedures are then explained to make an impure sample pureand fit to be used as a medicine. The pharmacological information did not just end with the saying that everything in the world is medicinal. It alsocovered the procedures to make toxic things not only non-toxic, but alsomedicinally potent.
Ethics:
Metals also had lot of mythological significance gold is considered as the semen of God of Fire, silver as thetears and mercury as the semen of Lord Siva, sulphur as themenstrual blood of Goddess Parvati. This belief, strong in thepractitioner, makes him essentially truthful and righteous inpreparing and practicing this style of Ayurveda. A flaw in theprocessing or prescription is believed to bring ill-effect not only to the patientand the physician’s fame, but also to his/her future generations. This workedmore like a quality control measure of spiritual dimension.
Practice:
Out of the 23 heavy metals, Ayurveda usesarsenic, copper, gold, iron, lead, mercury, and zinccommonly. Elaborate procedures- like the general andspecific purification processes, incineration processing andbiologization - are mentioned in the texts to make them pure,edible and having enhanced potency. Mercury, for example,undergoes eight levels of processing, lasting for weeks,before it qualifies as a medicinally useful one. The final product, bhasma indust form, undergoes further stringent quality check. This includes checking
Punarnava AyurvedaPage 2 of 4
 
the particle size and convertibility to metal. Bhasma that is very fine, fromwhich metal cannot be extracted by any means, which ensures completeconversion of the metal to a non-metal form only, is administered.Adaptations of modern technological help in these procedures ensure higherpurity and quality. Traditional quality control is nowhere evident like this as inthe case of metallic preparations. Proper guidelines are setin the selection of raw materials, purification, processingand administration. The guidelines that are strictly followed in theadministration are:
i.
Minimal Dose
: Such medicines are prescribed in milligrams,and decided based on the strength and age of the patient.
ii.
Shortest Duration
: They are not prescribed for longer period,to avoid any chance even for cumulative effect, as told in thecase of chronic exposure.
iii.
Organic medium
: They are administered bymixing with natural organic media like honey,ghee, milk, herbal juices etc that furtherreduces the risk of toxicity.
Rules:
AYUSH (Department of Ayurveda, Yoga, Unani,Siddha and Homeopathy, India) issued an order stating thatthe testing for heavy metals is mandatory for export purpose, in respect of every batch and that the permissible limits of the metals will be asrecommended by WHO. (In case of arsenic, cadmium and lead. In case of mercury, the permissible level will be 1 ppm).
Apprehensions:
A study Heavy metal content inAyurvedic herbal medicine products” was published in the2004 December issue of the Journal of American MedicalAssociation (JAMA) triggered a fear wave causing a fewcountries to ban the use of Ayurveda medicines, and manyindividuals to reject Ayurveda treatment under the wake of suspicion. The impact that the article created persists even after two years. This particular study is refuted thus:
i.
Heavy metals become toxic when they are not metabolized bythe body and accumulate in the soft tissues. Finest particles of such preparations when mixed in suitable organic medium willnot get indigested or accumulated.
ii.
Ayurvedic formulations have synergistic effect; one should notconclude about the effect merely with the presence of 1 or 2ingredients.iii.The study was not able to conclusively ascertain the metal’schemical forms which can impact bioavailability and toxicity,especially so in the case of mercury.
Punarnava AyurvedaPage 3 of 4

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