Ayurveda, the most ancient and scientific field of medicine, today has become a well-respected and sought after treatment methodology in the world. More and more patients, particularly those overseas, are adopting it as their first medicine choice. Here is a conversation with ace Ayurveda doctor of the region- Vaidya Jagjit Singh who has an immensely rich background in this field. Backed by the experience and expertise of four generations of his family, his life and work is dedicated to Ayurveda!
Please share some interesting insights about the origin of Ayurveda and why it is preferred over modern medicine?
The super power, the creator of the universe who created us all, created Ayurveda for our health to keep us healthy! It is already present in our nature. For instance, the knowledge of how to keep ourselves healthy in summers, in winters or in rainy season is Ayurveda itself. All chronic ailments like thyroid, arthritis; all the diseases can be cured by Ayurveda. Ayurveda is the only science which has all the knowledge, power and gives us all the needed precautions to keep us away from the ailments. It also tells us how to be healthy in every changing season, what should be our lifestyle to stay healthy.
How is diagnosis done in Ayurveda?
The diagnosis can be done by different ways. It can be done by learning about the body weight of patient, through touch and even by looking at the person. The eyes, nose tell a lot about the health of the person, whether the person is anemic or not and a lot more. Our eyes also tell a lot about our health. This is called Darshan diagnosis. The eyes act as a mirror to our inner self. Sparsh Diagnosis is done to check the palpitations of the body, to check the stomach etc. A key method of diagnosis is called Naadi Pariksha. It is also called Sparsh diagnosis. Sanwaad Parikshan is done by taking the history of the patient. We ask them about their medical history, their diet, daily routine and whether they take all the necessary nutrients in their daily life. For example if a person has a problem of hair fall, we do the Naadi Pariksha and then Sanwaad Parikshan. We do all the necessary diagnosis and get to know the actual reason of the problem which has caused the ailment. Then we suggest the necessary solution to the problem. What one should eat, what caused the problem to suggesting a better lifestyle and also how to avoid such problems. These are all ancient techniques and very scientific. Ayurveda helps in curing all the chronic diseases. It is time tested and reliable.
How can common people incorporate Ayurveda into their daily lives?
Common people are already associated with Ayurveda through their routine chores. They just need to know about it and become aware of it. When you wake up in the morning, you eat breakfast, then lunch and dinner everything has Ayurveda incorporated in it. If we look in our kitchen, everything has a touch of Ayurveda in it. Adrak, Saunth, Kali Mirch, Saunf, Haldi, Almonds, all dry fruits; everything has Ayurveda in it. If you have pigmentation then mix haldi in milk and have it. If you have pain anywhere, just eat Giloy empty stomach. Eat at a proper time. People already know about it. You incorporate Ayurveda naturally in our life. The myths related to Ayurveda need to be removed from your mind and let the power of Ayurveda help you. Once you know the correct use, it can work effectively on you.
Can one take Ayurvedic medicines with modern medicines? Is there any conflict between the two?
No there is no conflict. Modern medicine is just chemically converted. I never suggest my patients to stop consuming modern medicines which they are already taking. But they realize with time that Ayurveda helps them in a much better and effective way.
How can Ayurveda help in hypertension?
Hypertension is not a disease. It is a symptom and a signal. When the normal pressure of the body goes down it creates adverse effects. It is important to deal with it when it becomes chronic. Ayurveda first tries to find the reason. Modern science has side effects. We try to check the lifestyle, diet and causes. Sarpagandha is a medicine to control the blood pressure. It stabilizes the blood pressure. But knowing the correct quantity is important. Let the Vaidya do that work for you.
What are the Ayurvedic remedies to improve digestion?
Lemon, Coconut, Mint, Jeera, Kali Mirch, Saunf, Sonth, Peepli everything you get in your kitchen or home helps in digestion. In olden times, people used to fast. It was done to detox the body. It is all Ayurveda! None of these have any side effects. Amritdhara for instance is very effective in digestion. It helps in dehydration. These are all natural herbs.
What are the leading and time-tested institutes where Ayurvedic surgeries are done in India?
Jamnagar (Gujarat), NIA (National Institute of Ayurveda), Hindu University of Banaras, Rajiv Gandhi Institute of Ayurveda (Paprola) are some of the leading institutes. Surgeries can be done by Agnikarma. It is elaborated in our Vedas (scriptures). Sri Sri College of Ayurvedic Science and Research Hospital, Bangalore, is also doing commendable work. There is a leading Ayurvedic hospital in Hadapsar, Pune (Ayurved Rugnalaya Sane Guruji Arogya Kendra) and DAV College, Jalandhar, they are doing well, too. These are some pioneer institutes doing great work in Ayurveda.
How can Ayurveda help in dealing with stress?
We look for the exact cause of stress. It can be diagnosed easily. Nowadays 90% of people are dealing with stress. It can be diagnosed with Naadi Pariksha. It can also be dealt with Panchakarma. Detoxification of the body can be performed by Panchakarmas. Shirodhara is the best in it. It can be performed by making oil fall on the head from a specific distance. It helps in dealing with insomnia also. Badam Rogan, Pranayama help in dealing with stress. Also we talk to the patient and find out about the problems and provide solution from Ayurvedic perspective.
What can you suggest for maintaining the alkalinity of the body through Ayurveda?
Our body releases the toxins by sweating and through urine. Drink water. Eat Amla, Harad, Triphala. It can be taken regularly. It does not cause any harm to the body and help in maintaining the alkalinity of the body. These help in releasing all the toxins and level them, thereby keeping the balance.
What precautions can people take to protect themselves from deadly diseases like cancer or others through Ayurveda?
You have to keep your immunity strong. Don’t let it go down. If you have an ailment in any part of your body, your body tells you that. Rasayana Chikitsa is very helpful. Eat healthy and according to the need of the body. All things should be taken according to the need of the body. Take things that can be digested well. Adopt Ayurveda in your life.
(Vaidya Jagjit Singh is designated as a Rashtriya Guru by R.A.V, Department of Ayush, Govt. of India. He is a member of Center Council of Indian Medicine (CCIM), under the Union Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, Govt. of India since 1995. He is also the Vice-Chairman of Board of Ayurveda and Unani System of Medicine, Punjab.)