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Monday, Nov 04, 2002

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THAIKKATTU MOOSS: Snake's poison is said to be a cure for liver cirrhosis. One had to get a snake to bite a specific fruit and that would be given to the patient.

Before starting a treatment, the vaidyan first studies a person's constitution and environment. What the vaidyan treats is the cause for the disease, which is why you can't have over-the counter treatment in ayurveda.

VAIDYMADHOM: In olden times Vilwadi Gulika was made after grinding the mix for one or two hours daily for about eight to nine months continuously (grinding used to be done in the urine of goats) and rolled into small spheres. When processed this way, the pills never dried up.

Vatham, pitham and kapham are known as the tridosha in ayurveda. The universe is made of five basic elements -- earth, water, fire sky and air. According to the concept of ayurvedic science, vatham includes sky and air; pitham is of fire (the sun) and kapham of earth and water. The same concept hold good for human beings. It is a vaidyan's duty to find out which of the three doshas is upset and the treatment is given to neutralise that.

The attempts to export ayurvedic medicines to foreign countries with the label of `food supplement' should be discouraged. I remember that there was an attempt to impose tax on the highly medicinal oils such as dhanawantharam thailam and sahacharadi thailam, under the category of oils for bathing.

OLASSA MOOSS: There is surgery for piles, stones in the bladder, stomach and difficult delivery. But one needed the permission of the king to operate. Of course, it was not like the present time operations. However, no surgery has been done for the last 400 years, that is since the arrival of the Portuguese.

It would be wrong to think that there are no side effects in ayurvedic medicines and hence indulge in self-medication. These do have strong side effects if a wrong patient takes a wrong medicine at a wrong state of health.

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