Ayurveda has evolved since thousands of years. The traditional touch of Ayurveda often gives room for myths. Here is a collection of top 7 myths and clarifications about Ayurveda.
1. Principles of Ayurveda are not as genuine as that of modern science
The principles of Ayurveda are quite different from the modern science. It is because the tools and techniques used in the previous times were quite different from those available now. According to Ayurveda, diseases occur due to the vitiation of ‘Tri-doshas’ viz. Vata, Pitta and Kapha. These three elements cannot be seen as such in any part of the human body, but exist throughout the body.
They are responsible for functions like
- power, motility, oxygen transport etc (Vata),
- digestion, metabolism etc (Pitta) and
- body structuring, immunity, sustenance etc (Kapha).
There have been several inspired attempts to map tridosha theory to knowledge about the body, as we know from modern medicine. The tridosha theory was evolved thousands of years ago, in BC, as a simple way of understanding both human physiology and disease pathology. Some doctors are successfully practising Ayurveda purely based on the principles such as Tridosha while some others practice Ayurveda by integrating the classical Ayurvedic principles with modern diagnostic tools and techniques.
2. Ayurvedic medicines are slow in curing
It is not true. This wrong perception arose because most of the Ayurvedic remedies are targeted towards chronic (long standing) disorders like Asthma, Arthritis, liver disorders etc. Ayurvedic medicines are effective even in some acute conditions like cold, cough, etc
3. One can learn Ayurveda on his own and can advice it very easily to anyone.
Ayurveda is not just the knowledge about some herbs and their medicinal properties. It is a medical science involving detailed study of human beings, the detailed study of diseases and their treatment using natural resources. Self medication with Ayurvedic formulations or carelessly advising any Ayurvedic or herbal formulation without being a qualified Ayurvedic doctor might lead to severe complications like occurrence of side effects by the herbal medicine or misuse of medicines leading to further worsening of a disease. According to Ayurveda, different people have different physiological constitutions- what Ayurveda refers to as one’s Prakriti. A medicinal preparation, prescribed for a person for a disease can not be declared as the common treatment for that particular disease. So, the choice of the medicine depends upon the body constitution of the patient, the stage of the disease, the intensity and proportion of Doshas involved in the disease and the assessment made by the qualified Ayurvedic doctor.
4. Ayurveda is not a science.
Ayurveda has a rich history of more than 2000 years. The principles adopted in this system are evaluated thoroughly over the centuries. There is a systemic order in description of anatomy, physiology, disease pathology, treatment and medicines. Though at present Ayurveda lacks sufficient clinical documentation, the fact that it has survived over such a long period itself proves the scientific basement upon which it stands high, even today.
5. Ayurveda can only be used as a supportive therapy.
Ayurveda is highly effective as a mainstream medicinal system. Many diseases like Asthma, Paralysis, arthritis, etc can be effectively treated with Ayurvedic treatment and procedures.
In fact there are certain conditions where in Ayurveda has effective remedies, but allopathy doesn’t. Example: renal calculi, liver disorders etc
6. Ayruvedic medicines do not have expiry date.
It is not at all true. The expiry date of all the medicines have been clearly mentioned in text books. Herbs have their own chemical constituents, which have medicinal properties. These chemical constituents are bound to be affected with time and due to environmental factors. So, its a big myth about Ayurvedic medicines. Learn more about expiration date of Ayurvedic medicines.
7. Ayurvedic Medicines can cure cancer or AIDS.
Many of the herbs such as Turmeric, Neem, Brahma rasayana, etc have shown some significant anti cancerous activity. But still, it will be premature to claim that Ayurveda has a remedy for cancer. Likewise, there are many immune enhancer and immuno-modulator drugs in Ayurveda such as Tinospora cordifolia. But still, a lot of research is needed before we go and claim that Ayurveda has a CURE for these diseases.