Ayurveda – Importance and Future challenges

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Image: Physiological classification. In Ayurveda, physiological classification is performed based on the tri-doshas – Vata, Pitta and Kapha.

(Image source- http://prachodayat.in/category/tridosha/)

Ayurveda, knowledge of life, is a traditional and scientific medical system native to India. The oldest and ancient Indian literature (~5000 BC), four vedas, mention information on the natural remedies against few diseases but Ayurveda has developed into a complete medicinal system. Modern science corroborated in the past few decades about specialization in different fields but in Ayurveda there were eight major clinical subdivisions classified during ancient times – internal medicine, supra-clavicular origin diseases, surgery, toxicology, gynaecology, psychiatry, geriatrics and eugenics.

Recent decades evinced incredible advancement in the field of medical science. Certain lifesaving drug discoveries against life threatening diseases led to decreased mortality rate and increase in life expectancy without much improvement in the quality of life. Despite recent advancements in modern science, there are major questions that still remain unanswered –

1) Is there a cure for all diseases in modern science?

2) What are the side effects caused by the drugs?

3) What are the possible ways to integrate Ayurveda, traditional medicine, in the modern day clinical practice to maximize cure and minimize side effects.

The answers to these questions may provide better health care to all in a holistic approach as it is cost-effective, effortlessly available, and has better compatibility in treating several disease conditions. Present day modern science is focusing on personalized treatment based on the genomics approach, but in Ayurveda the treatment of an individual is personalized which is based on the physiology of an individual and this practice is being followed over centuries (Image).

Major problems that need immediate addressing to spread the knowledge of Ayurveda around the globe are –

1) quality of the herbs processed – requires an authorized institution that can identify the right herbs and supplies,

2) Good manufacturing practices – Improved guidelines and regulations are required to achieve better quality of drugs,

3) Lack of Infrastructure – Provision of proper infrastructure towards the better quality of medicinal production,

4) Creating pharmacovigilance – This has to be created by authorized personnel to provide information on indications and contra-indications of a drug – adverse reactions if any, dosage etc.,

5) Biodiversity protection- Indian government should actively allocate separate body to ensure there is sufficient protection of medicinal plants and also their sustainability,

6) Research and Development – Information on mode of action of ayurvedic drugs at cellular and molecular level needs to be addressed including pharmacokinetics and pharmacodynamics of each drug.

7) Education – Basic information of Ayurveda has to be included in our education system so that young Indians do not lose the knowledge and may gain interest in pursuing and exploring this fascinating science.


Article by:

Dr. Sivapriya Pavuluri,

Postdoctoral fellow

CSIR-Centre for Cellular and Molecular Biology

Hyderabad – 500007

Email: psivapriya@ccmb.res.in

Posted By : ScienceIndia Administrator
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Monimoy Saha

thank you

Posted on : 14-02-2018 12:11:23