Paracelsus said that God punished people with diseases, but gave them an antidote in the form of herbs so that people understand how great his strength is.
As long as humanity exists, it resorts to the help of Nature: it uses herbs and other natural remedies in the treatment of various diseases. Ayurveda, as the oldest medical system, has accumulated over 5000 years of vast experience of the healing with the help of phytotherapy, the knowledge about the effect of plants on the human body and thousands of formulations.
The Ayurvedic approach to the nature of plants is much wider and deeper than in any other medical system. Many factors must be considered when making medicines from herbs, minerals, and animal products. Unlike traditional pharmacology, plant treatment is not aimed at synthesizing one active substance, but at preserving the complex of active substances of the plant in a form closest to its nature.
Key concepts of Ayurvedic pharmacology:
- Panchamahabhuta, or the “5 Elements” theory: all living and nonliving objects consist of Air, Ether, Fire, Earth and Water, including plants, in the Universe.
- Integral forces (Vata, Pitta, Kapha) combine these elements, depending on the conditions caused by the experience of past lives, genetic characteristics, place, time of birth, etc. As a person has a constitution, plants are characterized by the advantages of Vata, Pitta or Kapha. Understanding the original nature of human (Prakriti), his predilection to diseases, and diagnostic of the current state (Vikriti) allow you to select those herbs or medicinal compositions due to their constitutional and energy features, and to compensate for the excess or deficiency of certain primary elements.
- The plant consists of seven tissues (dhatu) like the human body: the juice of the plant is its plasma; tar is its blood; wood is a muscle; gum is an analogue of fat; the bark of a plant is its bones; leaves are bone marrow and nerve tissue; flowers and fruits are the reproductive tissue. The plant dhatu affects the corresponding dhatu of the human body. Juice is for plasma, resin is for blood, wood is for muscle, gum is for fat deposits, bark is for bones, leaves are for bone marrow and nervous system, flowers and fruits are for reproductive organs.
- Their energy is one of the main and unique characteristics of plants, according to Ayurveda. The concept of the energy of herbs and spices includes: taste, virya (effects of heating and cooling), vipak (action after digestion), as well as prabhava (specific action that cannot be analyzed).
- Taste (rasa) affects the mental and physical state, affects digestion, starting agni (digestive fire). Ayurveda distinguishes six tastes, each of which is a derivative of five elements: sweet (Earth and Fire), sour (Earth and Fire), salty (Fire and Air), bitter (Air and Ether), and astringent (Earth and Air).
- Virya is the warming or cooling quality of herbs. Herbs, due to their inherent taste, can either heat the body or cool it. This causes a fundamental energetic effect on the body.
- Vipak is the post-digestive effect of tastes. For example, sweet and salty tastes have a sweet vipak, sour tastes have a sour vipak, and bitter, spicy and astringent tastes have a sharp vipak. Depending on the qualities and specified characteristics of herbs, they can enhance the dosha, the vipak of which they have. Sweet and salty food contribute to the separation of saliva and other Kapha secretions. Acidic herbs stimulate the secretion of gastric juice, bile and other manifestations of Pitta. Bitter, sharp and astringent tastes increase dryness and gas formation in the large intestine, thereby enhancing Vata.
- Prabhava is a special quality of herbs that does not intersect with the basic taste characteristics, affecting overall well-being.
Ayurveda divides medicinal herbs into several types:
- The herbs that improve functioning of the internal organs: they fight with harmful bacteria and stimulate digestion.
- Diuretic forms activate the kidneys, increase the excretion of excess water from the body, and can be used with high blood pressure.
- Medicine herbs that are used for colds.
- Carminative forms are used for the removal of excess gases from the intestinal tract, the elimination of constipation of a psychosomatic nature (stress, nervous overload).
- Forms that enhance metabolism: accelerate the physiological metabolic processes.
Dosage Forms in Ayurveda
There are many dosage forms in Ayurveda, and each of them has its own specific effect on the body:
- Vati – pills
- Taila – oil
- Churna – powder
- Basma – products made on the basis of minerals and precious metals calcined on fire
- Avaleha Leham Paka – jams and preserves
- Sita kashaya – a solution that is prepared using cold water (pour for night)
- Swasara – juices
- Ghrita – a mixture of medicinal herbs with ghee oil
- Phanta – hot solutions
- Tinctura – alcohol tincture.
The Calendula Pharma Co. phytolab produces all existing forms of herbal medicines. After examining each patient, the clinical doctors prescribe herbal remedies — more than 1,500 formulations are available. In some cases, individual prescriptions are developed, and the most suitable dosage forms are selected.
Phytotherapy is a safe, eco-friendly treatment. Herbal medicines do not cause side effects and addiction. Nature itself created everything, that’s why each person has his own medicine.