How to prevent and treat flu using Ayurveda
Prevention is Better than Cure in Flu – Ayurvedacharya Dr. Partap Chauhan,
Director, Jiva Ayurveda
The epidemic flu continues to spread and cause concern throughout the world. Even though governments and medical institutions have been battling all kinds of diseases like Swine Flu and Dengue, among others, many of these epidemics have already been classified as global pandemics. Massive media campaigns have been launched all over to create public awareness on diseases, still they continue to spread and pose a threat to millions of people. Why is it so?
We are unable to find the right solution to these problems only because we have not yet addressed their root cause, which is, the lack of immunity and ojas (energy) in the body. Ayurveda, the 5000-year-old science of natural healing, possesses a wealth of knowledge that can aid us in fighting against the odds presented by these diseases.
Ayurvedic View of Flu
According to Ayurveda, flu is caused only when there is lack of immunity in the body. In this ancient science of healing, the concept of immunity is based on the beej-bhumi (seed-land) theory. When the land (body) is fertile (laden with toxins or ama which get accumulated due to improper digestion), all the seeds (viruses) are able to grow easily. In contrast, when the land is infertile, lesser number of seeds germinates. This means, when the human body contains ama, it becomes a fertile breeding ground for different kinds of viruses.
On the other hand, ojas is the product of a healthy digestive system, which helps the body in resisting infection. Low ojas is lack of immunity at the physical level and absence of mental strength at the mind level. Ayurveda says you can prevent the spread of flu by strengthening the ojas and enhancing your body immunity.
General Precautions to keep Flu at Bay
Here are a few essential tips that will help you keep away from the flu of different kinds:
- Make sure you get at least 7-8 hours of good sleep every night. This will boost your immune system and enhance the ojas in your body.
- Try Panchakarma therapies – specialised Ayurvedic massage techniques – that are extremely useful in cleansing the body and giving it renewed vitality.
- Drink 8 to 10 glasses of water each day to flush accumulated ama from your system.
- Eat a healthy and balanced diet to keep your body strong, nourished, and ready to fight infection. Stick with whole grains, colourful vegetables, and vitamin-rich fruits.
- Support your immune system by exercising moderately on a regular basis. It helps in increasing blood circulation and eliminating the blockage in body channels.
- Consult your doctor if you have a cough and fever and follow their instructions. Make sure you take the prescribed medicines at the right time and in advised quantities.
Ayurvedic Treatment of Flu
The Ayurvedic treatment of any flu is aimed at controlling the virus and preventing complications by boosting the body’s immunity. It helps in cleansing the body by eliminating toxins and clearing blockage in channels. The following home remedies can be quite effective in flu:
- The leaves of basil are considered beneficial in the prevention of flu. The juice of about eleven grams of leaves of basil mixed with three grams of powder of black pepper can be taken beneficially in fever. This will check the severity of the disease.
- If you are bitten and fear you might’ve been affected by flu, it is a good idea to drink fresh juice made from basil leaves a few hours after the bite.
- The herb chirayata (Swertia Chirata) is effective in the treatment of intermittent type of viral fevers. It helps in lowering the temperature. An infusion of the herb, prepared by immersing 15 gm of chirayata in 250 ml of hot water with aromatics like cloves and cinnamon, should be given in doses of 15 to 30 ml.
- Use the decoction of Giloy (Tinospora cordifolia) leaves twice daily. To make the decoction, use one stem of Giloy crushed with water, boiled with two cups of water which is finally reduced to one cup. Filter and consume.
- Neem has special air purifying qualities which help in alleviating airborne diseases, including all kinds of flu. Chew 3-5 fresh leaves of Neem daily to purify your blood.
- Take one-foot-long branch of Giloy and seven leaves of Basil, mix and collect the juice of this mixture. Now boil this juice and drink it. This herbal juice increases our body resistance to a great extent.
The best we, as citizens, can do is to keep ourselves informed about what’s happening around us and take timely steps to prevent the spread of the flu.
Ayurvedacharya Dr. Partap Chauhan,
Director, Jiva Ayurveda