Column: Arti Gaur



The alarming rate at which the number of swine flu cases are rising just shows how careless people have become when it comes to personal hygiene. The science of Ayurveda is not a disease-targeting medicine-therapy as it works on the principal of balance (prakriti) and prevention of ailments, simultaneously strengthening the immunity of the body. In Ayurveda a virus cannot be killed but it can be made nishkriya and its spread in the body can be arrested. By following these simple cleansing techniques you can make sure that any virus even if it enters is flushed out of the body. Ideally, these should be done every time one returns home.

JAL NETI: (Nasal cleansing) Take 500ml bearably warm water in a neti pot, add ˝ tsp black/rock salt and a pinch of turmeric. Stand evenly and bending slightly forward tilt the head at 45degrees angle towards left. Insert the nozzle of the pot into the right nostril. While breathing normally from the mouth, tilt the pot so that the water runs into the right nostril and flows out from the left. Repeat on the other side. Breathe normally afterwards. Saline water is the best cleansing medium, which absorbs and scrapes away infectious pathogens accumulated in the nasal passage. Turmeric is disinfectant, antiseptic and scouring agent.

PUTTING COW’S GHEE IN NOSTRILS: Warm pure cow’s ghee to a bearable temperature. Lie down flat on your back and let the head hang down, bending the neck backwards. Using a dropper or a spoon pour about 5 drops of ghee in each nostril turn by turn, in such a way so as it does not flow down towards the throat but flows backwards towards the head. Keep lying in the same position for 5 minutes afterwards. Cow’s ghee lubricates the nasal passage and strengthens the mucous membranes to fight against infections.

MASSAGING THE FEET WITH MUSTARD OIL: Heat mildly some mustard oil and massage the soles of the feet before retiring. Loose cotton socks can be worn later. Mustard oil is hot and massaging generates heat in the body to fight any symptoms of cold and infection.

Tulsi (holy basil) is one of the most easily available rasayana herb in our country and also happens to be one of the best immunity builders. It’s good for all prakriti types, but excess use is not advised for those with pitta constitution. Rasayanas (rejuvenators) are extremely beneficial to patients who are suffering from diseases and ailments as these compounds carry powerful agents responsible for maintaining equilibrium of dhatus and doshas in the body. All rasayans have some effect on improving the functional capacity of the brain also. The same goes for honey. Honey, for preparation of ayurvedic formulae should be preferably at least one year old. Take a teaspoon of tulsi juice mixed with a tea spoon of honey everyday. This formula is potent enough to fight almost all kinds of viral infections and weaknesses.

—The writer is an ayurved expert from Dhyan Foundation.
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September 2009

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