Ayurvedic medicines

Ayurvedic Medicines and Ayurveda Herbs

Popularly used Ayurvedic medicines and herbs for Health Benefit

The Indian subcontinent contains several alternative systems of medicine. These traditional approaches have co-existed and established themselves amongst the allopathic system of medicine since the past century. One such course of treatment is the “Ayurvedic” system of medicine. This article will review popularly used Ayurvedic medicines and Ayurveda herbs, which have positive Health Benefits. 

Ayurveda is a popular medicine system in the Indian subcontinent that aims to prevent and treat the illness rather than respond to the disease. It is a part of the holistic approach to health and yoga, nutrition, meditation, and other lifestyle changes. 

Ayurvedic herbs are used to maintain a healthy balance between the mind, body, and spirit, as per this system. The pharmacy of Ayurvedic treatments currently includes over 600 herbal formulas for increasing vitality, providing pain relief or other health effects. The most notable Ayurveda herbs that elicit remarkable health benefits are as follows :

 Ashwagandha: Ayurveda Herb with the horse-like smell

Ashwagandha is a well–known Ayurvedic plant that is widely found in India and Africa. The roots of this plant are “Ashva” and “gandha,” which means horse–like smell.” The roots of this plant have this characteristic odor and hence the name of the plant. The roots and berries of this plant are used in Ayurvedic formulas for improving energy vitality and promoting restful sleep. Lowering anxiety and helping the body manage stress more effectively is another significant effect. It also reduces the levels of cortisol that are produced in response to stress. It also improves muscle and bone growth by providing proper nourishment regardless of the patient’s age. Another popular health benefit is that it boosts the immune system and reduces inflammation.

Bitter Melon:

This is an Ayurvedic spice known as bitter gourd, a tropical vine that is closely associated with pumpkin and cucumber. It has a sharp flavor and is rich in vitamin A. Regular consumption of this fruit controls blood sugar levels and promotes insulin secretion in diabetic patients. Other health benefits such as the promotion of weight loss and reduction of bad cholesterol levels are observed. (this is found in animals when they consume high doses of this herb, but these are yet to be confirmed in humans.)

Brahmi: A popular brain tonic

Herb of grace or thyme–leaved gratiola are the popular synonyms of this Ayurvedic medicinal plant often used as a brain tonic. This is a part of the Ayurvedic remedy for removing toxins from the nervous system, treating depression, and improving memory. Consumption of Brahmi as a tea by boiling this herb’s leaves with water rejuvenates the body and mind. As a medicated oil, it is used for nourishing the hair and also revitalizing the brain cells. Other health benefits of this plant include reducing the symptoms of ADHD ( attention deficit hyperactive disorder ) and improving memory and concentration.

Boswellia

Also known as Indian frankincense, this herbal extract is obtained from the resin of the Boswellia serrata tree. Owing to the abundance of boswellic acid in this extract, it shows anti-inflammatory activity. This makes it a popular choice while treating chronic inflammatory conditions like asthma, cardiovascular disease, ulcerative colitis, and so on. Invitro studies have shown that this extract is as effective as the non – steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs ( NSAIDs ) but has lesser adverse effects. This extract’s other health benefits include reducing pain and improving mobility in people with osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis, prevention of oral infections, and gingivitis treatment. 

Cardamom :

This spice is another staple of Indian and Middle Eastern cuisine and has a strong aroma. It has a tranquilizing effect, lowers blood pressure, prevents inflammation, treats indigestion, asthma, dysuria, bad breath, and reduces fatty liver disease risk. Lowering blood sugar levels and protecting the liver by preventing liver enlargement are other benefits of this spice. The seeds within the cardamom pods possess these health benefits but are often employed in Ayurvedic formulations and the pods. The essential oil obtained from the seeds has a calming and soothing effect by promoting feelings of clear breathing.

Cumin :

Cumin is a popular spice in the kitchen and is used as whole dried seeds or ground powder, especially in the Mediterranean and Southwest Asia. This spice is obtained from the Cuminum cyminum and is very much useful in treating digestion-related ailments. Regular consumption of these seeds increases good cholesterol levels, prevents inflammation, enhances the signs of insulin resistance, and promotes digestion and metabolism. Other common health effects of this plant are treating irritable bowel syndrome symptoms such as abdominal pain and bloating, reducing the risk of certain foodborne infections, and providing protection against heart disease. 

Gotu kola: herb of longevity

This perennial plant is also known as Asiatic pennywort or herb of longevity and is used to alleviate mental fatigue. It has a mild stimulant effect that improves mood, eases anxiety, enhances memory, and manages the cognitive problems associated with depression. This ayurvedic medicine (herb) is considered a temporary energy boost and is taken as an oral extract to reap this benefit. It is also useful in reducing varicose veins as well as diminishing the symptoms of eczema, psoriasis. However, these health benefits are not scientifically proven, as more research is needed to validate these effects.

Guggul :

It is a gum resin obtained from the Indian bdellium – a native to India, Pakistan, and Bangladesh. This Ayurvedic resin is known for its anti-inflammatory properties. For this reason, it is found to be beneficial in treating acne, eczema, psoriasis, and skin irritation. Ayurvedic formulations containing this resin along with Triphala are found to be effective in managing the symptoms of hypothyroidism such as weakness, fatigue, and muscle ache. Despite these results, further studies are needed to uncover the full potential of this Ayurvedic herb.

Haritaki: King of Herbs

This Ayurvedic plant has been used for healing and high consciousness of the mind for thousands of years and has been referred to as the “King of Herbs.” It is one of the Triphala herbs and is known to increase energy, intelligence, and awareness. The tree’s dried fruit is used for therapeutic purposes used as a natural anti-viral, anti-fungal, hepatoprotective, cardioprotective, hypolipidemic immunomodulatory, anti-diabetic, and wound healing agent.

Licorice root :

This is a rejuvenating herb that can be boiled with milk and consumed at night. It reduces inflammation, prevents heartburn, manages bloating, nausea, belching, and stomach ulcers. Glycyrrhizic acid, an active constituent of this herb, reduces the levels of toxic bacteria in the gut and soothes gastrointestinal problems. It also has a soothing effect on the throat and is often used as a topical gel to treat eczema. Maintenance of oral health and providing relief from food poisoning are other miscellaneous health benefits of licorice powder.

Manjistha :

This perennial climber is one of the best blood purifying herbs in Ayurvedic medicine. Sedentary lifestyle results in accumulating toxins in the skin, joints, muscles, and other tissues. In such cases, purification of the blood and lymph is vital, and the consumption of Manjistha can accomplish this detoxification. Apart from acting as a potent lymph mover, this ayurvedic medicine also cleanses the liver, regulates kidney function, and clears acne. It is available as capsules or can be consumed with milk before bed. This Ayurveda herb finds itself a place in some of the face packs, owing to its ability to treat skin diseases.

Neem :

This is a sacred tree of Indians and has been used since ancient times for its excellent healing powers. This tree’s leaves and twigs are often used in more than 75 % of the Ayurvedic formulas. Purification of blood, detoxification, wound healing, skin diseases such as acne, eczema, and protection against skin damage by the sun are some of the expected health benefits of this Ayurvedic plant. Another significant effect of this plant is its ability to reduce fever, especially malarial fever. The flowers of this tree are used as home remedies for stomach disorders.

Shatavari: queen of herbs

This herb is popularly known as the “queen of herbs” and is mainly used for treating and managing conditions associated with the female reproductive system. It possesses many health benefits that strengthen its use as a nutritive tonic, aphrodisiac, antitumor, laxative, immunomodulatory, galactagogue, demulcent, and an antispasmodic agent. The juice of the roots of this herb helps to alleviate cough. Simultaneously, the other parts are useful in maintaining blood sugar, treating ulcers of the gastrointestinal tract, and maintaining the skin’s elasticity.

Triphala :

This term is very much entangled with Ayurveda as it consists of three different Ayurvedic herbs, namely Amla, Myrobalan ( hartaki ), and Belleric myrobalan ( bibhitaki ). This formula has used to restore digestive and constitutional health. It is useful for individuals with diabetes, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, and obesity. This Rasayana herb reduces abdominal pain and flatulence by serving as a natural laxative and increasing bowel movement frequency. Triphala is also found to delay the onset of aging-related diseases such as cancer and heart disease. 

Turmeric :

Turmeric is an excellent detoxifier native to South Asia and is a staple of most Indian recipes. The roots of Curcuma longa are commonly powdered to give a yellow powder that is called turmeric. This powder is extensively used in traditional beauty regimens for improving the skin complexion by promoting blood circulation. Treatment of depression, preservation of brain function by increasing the levels of brain-derived neurotrophic factor ( BDNF ) in patients with Alzheimer’s, and eliciting anti-inflammatory action are other health benefits. 

Ayurvedic medicines and Herbs: Conclusion

You can often add Ayurvedic medicines and herbs in small amounts to enhance the flavor of food, and this, in the long run, can boost the health of individuals. Since these herbs are often used together with yoga, a healthy diet, and meditation, they enhance life quality. But despite being safe and effective, the use of Ayurveda herbs for health benefits has its own set of flaws. Higher doses of these herbs may not adversely affect a healthy man. Still, they may have detrimental effects when consumed by children, pregnant or breastfeeding women, or patients with other medical conditions.

As the content and quality of these Ayurveda herbs are not completely regulated, there is also a chance of possible contamination of these herbs, which may even cause life-threatening effects. Thus, it would help if you made proper consultation with the healthcare personnel before beginning any new Ayurvedic treatment to reap the Ayurvedic formula’s maximum benefits. 

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