Best Grandmother’s Ayurvedic Home Remedies
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If you have existing conditions, allergies you should consult your doctor prior using ayurvedic concepts or any general recommendations.
This is known as Shoola in Ayurveda. Eight types of shoola have described which include Vataja, Pittaja, Kaphaja,Vata-Pittaja, Vata-Kaphaja, Tridoshaja and Amaja.
All these types have their own characteristics like :Vataja penerating type of pain, Pittaja pain is associated with burning in chest and Kaphaja is associated with mild pain and heaviness of head while Amaja is associated with flatulence, nausea and excessive salivation.
1. Extract 1 teaspoonful juice of fresh ginger and mix it with 1/2 a teaspoonful of clarified butter. Consuming this juice helps relieve abdominal pain instantly.
2. Boil about a teaspoonful of Ajowan seeds in 1 cup (about 125 ml) of water for 5 minutes. Strain it through the tea strainer and add a pinch of common salt. Taking this solution helps to get rid of the pain.
3. Take fresh mint leaves and extract them to get about a teaspoonful of juice. Mix this juice in a cup of plain water and drink instantly. Though this mixture does not taste good, it gives instant relief.
Acne being associated often with adolescence, is termed as Yuvanapidika in Ayurveda. Vitiation of Pitta and Kapha are generally involved in the outburst of pimples. Acne due to a Pitta vitiation are generally red, soft, small and tend to be aggravated in hot weather. On the other hand, in a Kapha type, the lesions are pale, hard, fairly large, have an oily secretion and tend to aggravate in cold weather.
1. Stick to a proper eating schedule and avoid excess intake of tea, coffee, pickles, fatty diets, aerated drinks, etc. Prevent the apperarence of acne. Chronic constipation should be taken care of well in advance.
2. Wash the face properly with water and wipe it with a clean towel. Apply honey on the entire face with the help of cotton and leave it as such overnight. Wash off the honey in the morning with water and lemon juice. Practising this for several days helps in curing pimples.
3. Slice a healthy and fresh cucumber and apply these slices over the face, eyes, neck etc. Leave them as such for half an hour. It is a good tonic for the face and it’s regular use prevents pimples and black heads.
4. Finely powder 20 gms each of Indian gooseberry and Beleric myrobalan. Add an equal amount of finely powdered gram flour and a spoonful of honey, a pinch of turmeric powder and a cup of milk. Mix this solution properly and apply on the face and let it dry well. Wash the face with cold water and try avoiding exposure to dust. Repeating this exercise for several days hinders the occurence of pimples.
5. Make a fine paste of 100 gms of finely powdered gram flour, two spoons of curd, and a few drops of sandalwood oil. To this add 1/2 a teaspoonful of lime juice and mix well. Apply the paste on the face and wait for about an hour. Wash the face with cold water. Repeating this for several days will help you to maintain a smooth face.
6. Decoction of the leaves of Indian pennywort is a recognised blood purifier. About 50 gms of leaves are boiled in water for 3-4 hours. Strain the decoction through a thin cloth. This decoction should be taken with luke warm milk. Regular use of this remedy for several days acts as a good blood purifier, effectively controlling the acne problem.
7. The juice of the fresh fruit of the Indian gooseberry is taken with clarified butter and honey to purify the blood. If fresh fruit is not available, mix 20 gms powder of the fruit with a teaspoonful of honey and clarified butter, and consume it. This paste is regarded as a potent blood purifier.
A difficulty in breathing is termed as Shwas Roga in Ayurveda. For the purpose of description, Ayurveda classifies the specific difficulties in breathing into 5 different types. One of thes types relates to the commonly known bronchial asthma. In this condition, an obliteration of the respiratory passage is caused by a vitiated Vata and Kapha, leading to an acute attack of breathlessness.
According to Ayurveda, an intake of incompatible foods and internal generation or exposure to toxic substances cause the vitiation leading to bronchial problems.
1. Ayurveda considers that the attacks of breathlessness are more actively precipitated by constipation. To prevent them or to control their intensity, make sure that you have a regular bowel movement. For this purpose, you may frequently use spogel seeds. This herb is also called Psyllium.
2. If your bronchial problem is a seasonal one, take 2 teaspoonfuls of fresh ginger juice mixed with an equal volume of honey. Taking this twice a day helps to check the frequency and the intensity of your problem.
When you have an acute attack of breathlessness, don’t depend on a home remedy alone. Take your routine medication as advised by your physician. One of the following measures may help you as an additional support –
3. Take 2 tablespoonfuls (about 30 ml) of mustard oil or any other vegetable oil. Warm it well. Dissolve about
2 gms of camphor in the oil. Apply this oil gently all over the chest, neck and back. Do not massage.
Allow the oil to work for a few minutes. Later, give a dry fomentation.This is a simple measure, generally good for all ages. Make sure that your skin is not allergic to camphor.
4. Take 3-4 fresh betel leaves and boil them in about 250 ml of water till the quantity of water is reduced to half.
Strain the decoction and add 2 teaspoonsful of honey while the liquid is still warm but not very hot. Taking this receipe as a supplement may ease your problem during an attack of breathlessness.
1. A paste made of turmeric powder and water, applied locally, provides instant relief to a burn injury.
2. Sesame oil, applied on the affected burnt skin, provides equally good relief.
Ayurveda terms common cold as Prathishyaya. Vitiation of Vata and Kapha individually or together, is generally involved in the ailment. Cold is probably the most commonly encountered ailment in the human population and thereby, it becomes ‘common cold’.
Allergy to changes in weather or an infection by a virus are considered as important causative factors of the common cold. As a result, the mucous membranes of the upper respiratory tract is inflamed and this leads to symptoms like sneezing, a running nose, headache, sore throat, body pain etc.
1. Boil about 5-10 gms small slices of freshly cut ginger in a glass of water for 5 minutes. Add a teaspoonful of sugar to enhance the taste. Strain the decoction through tea strainer. Drinking this tea 4-6 times a day would ensure instant relief from common cold.
2. Grind 4-6 seeds of black pepper. Add this powder together with a pinch of turmeric, to a cup of milk and boil it for 2 minutes. Strain the milk through a tea strainer. Drinking this at bed time helps you to sleep better by preventing a stuffy nose and nocturnal dry cough caused by a common cold.
3. Coarsely powder the cinnamon bark. Boil about 20 gms in a glass of water, adding a pinch of black pepper powder and a teaspoonful of honey. Strain the decoction and drink it when hot. This would cure you of your cold.
4. Lemon is an important remedy for the obvious symptoms of a common cold . Dilute a lemon in a glass of warm water. Add a teaspoonful of honey to it. Take this lemonade twice or thrice daily. This vitamin C rich lemonade increases body resistance, decreases toxicity and reduces the duration of illness.
Constipation is known as Vibandha in Ayurveda. Causes leading to constipation are irregular food habits, irregular bowel habits besides psychological reasons.
Vata is the dosha which is predominantly involved with Vibandha. It is characterized by pain in the lower abdomen, scanty feces or painful defecation, dry feces, headache and low back ache.
1. A natural and simple diet is a significant factor in preventing constipation. Eat plenty of darkgreen vegetables, whole grains, cereals, bran, fresh and dry fruits, milk and milk products etc. One should carefully avoid faulty diets, intake of refined and rich foods lacking minerals and vitamins, overeating, extravagant consumption
of meat, regular use of purgatives and excess of strong tea or coffee. If you are prone to habitual constipation, taking warm water frequently during the day-time will be of good help to you. Food should be properly
chewed and should be taken as per schedule, avoiding odd meal timings.
2. Mix the three myrobalans (Indian gooseberry, Chebulic myrobalan and Beleric myrobalan) in equal ratio and grind them in a mixer and sieve it. Consuming this powder with a glass of warm water twice or thrice a day
helps relieving constipation.
3. In a glass of cold water mix a teaspoonful of Ispagula husk. Take this solution followed by another glass of water. This remedy is highly useful for constipation.
4. Keep drinking water in a copper vessel and leave it overnight. Drinking this water in the morning helps regulating the bowel movement.
5. Mix one part of Indian Senna, 2 parts of Chebulic myrobalan, and one part of Indian gooseberry. Grind the mixture into a fine powder. Taking a teaspoonful of this powder is effective
in chronic constipation.
Cough is known as kasa in Ayurveda. Depending upon the involvement of the doshas and other factors kasa has been defined to be of five types viz. Vataja, Pittaja, Kaphaja, Kshataj (traumatic) and Kshyaj (tubercular).
The causative factors of all the types are different, like excessive physical exercise gives rise to Vataja kasa. Hot and spicy food along with anger and heat exhaustion gives rise to Pittaja kasa. Ingestion of excessive sweets, laziness and sleeping during the day induces Kaphaja kasa. Being over weight and extreme involvement in sexual habits would induce Kshayata kasa. Excess sex, non assumable food and suppression of natural urges would result in Kshayaja kasa.
1. On a pastry board grind 4-6 black pepper seeds. Add a teaspoon of honey and mix it thoroughly. Taking this paste several times a day relieves cough.
2. Almonds are a good remedy for cough. Soak about 10-15 kernels in water overnight. After removing the brown skin grind the softened kernels into a fine paste. Add 20 gms of butter and sugar to this paste. Eating this paste in the morning and evening gets rid of cough. This remedy especially comes handy in case your are suffering from a dry cough.
3. Take 10 gms of dried rind of Beleric myrobalans and a 1/2 teaspoonful of black pepper. Grind them to a fine powder. Add a pinch of salt and 2 teaspoonsful of honey to this blend. Mix them well to form a paste. Administered twice daily, this paste relieves cough.
4. Take about 10 gms of each of long pepper, dried ginger, holy basil leaves. Add 4-6 small cardamoms and grind to yield a fine powder. Consuming this powder with equal amount of honey relieves cough.
Soap nut acacia
1. Rubbing lemon juice over the scalp before taking a bath prevents dandruff.
2. Take about 100gms of leaves of Margosa (Neem) tree and boil them in a litre of water for 1-2 hours. Allow it to cool and strain through a thin cloth. This decoction is an excellent hair wash and prevents dandruff. Prepare the decoction freshly for every wash.
3. Finely powder the pods of soap nut acacia and apply it on the scalp with water. Leave as such for 15 minutes before taking a bath. Exercising it for several days cures dandruff.
4. Mix in equal parts of dried Indian gooseberry, Shikakai (pods of soap nut acacia) and Margosa leaves. Grind the mixture to a fine powder. Mix this powder in a litre of water and wash the hair with this solution to efficiently get rid of dandruff.
This condition is termed as Atisara in Ayurveda. Diarrhoea could be caused by any of the following : Intake of foodsof any particular quality in excess, foods incompatible with your prakriti or with seasonal variations, intake of foods that are not well cooked, contaminated water or other beverages etc.
Further, in Ayurveda, diarrhoea is also described to be induced by mental causes and by toxins. Atisar is classified into 7 distinct types namely, Vataja, Pittaja, Kaphaja, Bhayaja (caused by fear), Tridoshaja, Shokaja (caused by grief) and Raktatisara (diarrhoea associated with bleeding).
During diarrhoea, ensure that you are on a suitable diet to overcome dehydration, as advised by your physician. Home remedies are just supplementary approaches.
1. Whey or buttermilk are considered effective remedies for diarrhoea. Whey is the liquid portion of curd while buttermilk is obtained by churning the curd after the fat has been removed. Take any one of them in small volumes at frequent intervals.
2. Raw banana is an effective astringent and is recommended widely as a diet for treating diarrhoea. Cut one raw banana into three pieces and soften them in a pressure cooker using an adequate volume of water. Drain out the excess water. Separate the peel and mash the softened pulp well. In a skillet, roast a small volume of poppy seeds till they brown. Grind them to obtain a fine powder. Add this powder to the banana mash together with a pinch of salt. This delicious and nutritious receipe checks diarrhoea owing to its astringent properties.
3. The dried rind of a pomegranate is an invaluable remedy for diarrhoea. A fine powder of this rind, 1 gm twice a day taken with buttermilk helps to check the frequency of loose motions.
Dry skin is a predomonant trait of a Vata constitution. Even in normal people, Vata causes dryness the skin when it is vitiated due to seasonal influences. This dryness may even extend to the mucous membranes covering the lips and thus cause cracking.
Dryness of the skin and the mucous membranes is also caused by certain illnesses like fever.
1. An oil massage is a simple yet well known remedy to treat dry skin. For better results, you may add a few drops of glycerine to the oil just before application.
2. Clarified butter or milk cream are good for cracked lips. Apply them for a couple of days just before going to bed.
Earache is a common disorder which is often due to infection of the outer ear or the middle ear. The outer ear canal can catch infection during swimming while infections of the middle ear are more common in younger children.
1. Take 10-12 leaves of Holy basil. Crush them, add the mass to about 15 ml of sesame oil and heat the blend well till the water evaporates. Strain the oil through a piece of cheese cloth. Use the oil as ear drops to relieve the pain.
2. For earaches caused by excessive ear wax, the following recipe is a useful one : Take approximately 3 gms each of garlic and Ajowan and boil them together in nearly 2 tablespoons of sesame oil. Continue boiling till they turn red. Strain using a fine cloth to retain the particular color. Allow this preparation to cool down to the room temperature before using it as ear drops.
Caution : While preparing home remedies for ear aches, take extra precaution with regard to the cleanliness of the vessels in which they are prepared.
Fever or Jwar is one of the most comprehensively described entity in Ayurveda. Thirteen types of fever are described in Ayurveda- Vataja, Pittaja, Kaphaja, Vata-Pittaja, Vata- Kaphaja, Tridoshaj (intrinsic fevers), Agantuja (extrinsic fever), Kamaja (related to sex), Shokaja (anxiety induced), Vishama jwar (malaria), Krodhaja (anger induced) and Bhuta-vistha (of unknown origin). Depending upon the doshic involvement or other factors, additional symptoms besides elevation of temperature are observed.
The causative factors of fever are diverse and hence the management is equally varied. In majority of the fevers, the presence of mind and common sense in handling a situation goes in conformity with the laws of nature.
1. Sponging the forehead and the body with cold water, is a commonly recommended practice in high fever and in fever due to sun-stroke. For better results, add 1 teaspoonful of rose water to the cold water before sponging. You could add the rose water even to an ice-bag and use it for sponging.
2. Take some 20 fresh leaves of Holy Basil. Take a small piece of ginger and some 5 grains of black pepper. Boil them together in your tea and drink the warm liquid.
Never attempt to force-feed a person down with fever since the body is struggling to counter the fever and food may only aggravate the situation (the person is likely to vomit).
Flatulence is known as Anaha in Ayurveda. The causative dosha is Vata and is characterized by stiffness in the lower abdomen, scanty defecation, and occasional breathing problems.
1. Take a pinch of asafetida and dissolve it in a cup of hot water. Drink this water when it is adequately cool.
2. Light roast a tablespoonful of fennel seeds. Once they cool down to a bearable temperature, chew them thoroughly in divided doses. After the first two doses, you will experience a great deal of relief.
This is known as Ajeerna in Ayurveda. It is result of fasting or consumption of food before digestion of the earlier intake of food. Untimely food habits, heavy or dry food, psychological causes like fear, anger, jealousy etc., suppression of natural urges and excessive intake of water cause indigestion! A reduction in Pitta activity with an excessive Kapha characterize the doshic profile of indigestion.
1. Mix 5 gms of asafetida with a glass of hot water. Add a teaspoonful of sugar to better the taste. Though it smells bad while swallowing, it rapidly relieves your system of flatulence and helps in relieving indigestion.
2. Add 2 drops of mint oil in a cup of warm water and drink immediately. It provides instant relief from gripping and flatulence.
3. Wash about 20-25 fresh curry leaves with cold water. Extract the juice from these leaves. In a cup of plain water, add about 1 teaspoonful of lemon juice and the juice obtained from the curry leaves. Add 1 teaspoonful of honey to this blend and always drink this when its fresh. It relieves nausea, vomiting and flatulence induced by indigestion.
4. Mix a teaspoon of ajowan seeds with 1/2 spoon of rock salt. Consume the mixture with a glass of water. This will instantly get rid of flatulence and stomach disorder.
Joint pains have broadly been classified under Sandhivata and Ama Vata. While Ama Vata correlates to rheumatoid arthritis in terms of pathology – the other entity is close to arthritis of ageing. In both forms of joint pains, there is an invariable involvement of Vata.
1. Massage of the affected joint has been the best remedy mentioned and observed by experience. The benefits of massage can be amplified if the massage is done using warm mustard oil. The oil may not offer a very pleasant odour, but a massage with this ensures relief!
2. Grind in your mortar and pestle equal parts of dried ginger, black pepper and a pinch of black salt. Take a teaspoonful of this mixture with water.
Loss of appetite and indigestion are closely linked entities of digestive disturbances in Ayurveda. Agnimandhya is the term used to denote the loss of appetite while Ajeerna denotes indigestion. A harmonious balance of Vata and Pitta hold the essence of a normal appetite. A vitiation in their mutual balance could lead to a loss of appetite. Irregular dietary habits bring about a vitiation in Pitta while psychic problems like anxiety, fear or physical causes like suppression of impeding urges lead to an imbalance in Vata. Both these sequences lead to disturbances in normal levels of appetite.
Ajowan seeds Honey
Asafetida Indian gooseberry
Basil leaves Long pepper
Black Pepper Milk
Black salt Mustard seeds
Cinnamon bark Pomegranate
Cloves Rock salt
Coriander Small cardamom
Cumin seeds Sugar
Fennel seeds Tamarind pulp
1. Extract about a cup of pomegranate seed juice. Add a pinch of rock salt and a spoonful of honey. Taking this solution slowly removes the bad taste from the mouth and increases your appetite!
2. Take equal parts of mustard seeds, asafetida, ginger, cumin seeds and black salt and grind the mixture to a fine powder. Add this mixture to a glass of buttermilk and drink it an hour before meals to enhance the appetite.
3. Mix well a spoonful of each – Indian gooseberry powder, clarified butter and honey. Take this paste prior to meals to improve the appetite.
4. Ingredients : one part each of cloves, nutmeg and long pepper, 3 parts of Indian gooseberry and 8 parts of ginger.Grind the mixture to obtain a fine powder. Add sufficient sugar to make the taste acceptable. Consuming a spoonful of this mixture twice or thrice a day helps in regaining the lost appetite.
5. Mix in equal parts, cinnamon bark, small cardamom, coriander seeds and fennel seeds. Soak the mixture in cold water overnight. Strain this blend with a tea strainer. Drinking this cold infusion early in the morning helps in building an appetite.
6. Soak about 10 grams of tamarind in a cup of warm water for 30 minutes. Squeeze the mass to obtain tamarind juice. Add a pinch of table salt to suit your taste. Add about 2 grams of powdered ajowan seeds. Taken before meals, this juice improves appetite. Alternatively, you can dilute 1/2 a teaspoonful of tamarind pulp in one cup of water for this purpose.
7. Basil tea is an efficacious drink to enhance appetite. Take about 20 gms of Basil leaves and boil the same in 250 ml of water till the quantity is reduced to half of the original volume. Strain the liquid and mix an equal amount of milk, a pinch of cardamom powder and sufficient sugar to suit your taste. Consuming this tea twice a day helps to increase your appetite.
Almost all pains including muscular pain in the body are described to be Vataja in origin in Ayurveda.
1. Heat about 50 ml of sesame oil gently and apply it when warm on the affected portion after taking hot fomentation.
2. Dissolve 3 crystals of menthol and 2 drops of cumin oil in 3 teaspoons of sesame oil. For better results, you may use warm sesame oil. Apply this on the affected portion followed by a gentle massage for a quick relief from muscular pain.
1. Cut a lemon into two halves. Sprinkle a very small pinch of black salt over the cut surface, and lick it. The strong aroma of lemon coupled with the salty taste will make you feel better.
2. Cut a slice of ginger. Chew it for some time. You can use black salt to impart a salty taste to the ginger.
Sore throat has been mentioned as a prodromal symptom of common cold in Ayurveda. It has been described as pin-prick like pain in the throat. Vata-Kapha are usually involved in causation of sore throat.
1. Soak two teaspoonfuls of ajowan seeds in cold water. Add a pinch of common salt. Using this infusion as a common gargle substantially eases the acute sore throat.
2. Coarsely powder the cinnamon bark. Boil a teaspoonful of this powder in water. Strain the extract and add a pinch of black pepper and a teaspoonful of honey . Consuming this decoction every three hours in a day cures a sore throat.
3. Two tablespoons of fenugreek seeds should be added to a litre of cold water and simmered on a gentle flame. This should be allowed to cool to a temperature that could be tolerated by the buccal cavity. Strain this mixture and gargle with it several times a day. This cures a sore throat.
4. Liquorice is a well recognised remedy for sore throat. Put a small piece of raw liquorice in the mouth and chew it regularly. It gives a soothing effect to the sore throat.
5. Decoction of common tea leaves with a pinch of table salt is used for gargling. This can be used twice or thrice a day to get rid of a sore throat.
Surya Santap (heat exhaustion) leads to trishna (excessive thirst). Pitta dosha is primarily involved in trishna of surya santap and ischaracterized by a bitter taste in the mouth, a burning sensation in the head, a yellowish tinge in the eyes, faecal matter and urine besides unconsciousness. Persons afflicted with trishna like to have cold drinks.
Heat exhaustion is endemic to hot climates like India (long and severe summers). The person suffers from high fever, thirst, rapid pulse beats, absence of sweating and confusion. A more severely affected person may lose consciousness altogether.
1. Cold sponging all over the body is the simplest measure. For better results, add a teaspoonful of rose water to the cold water before sponging.
2. The person should be given adequate liquids if the situation permits.
3. If raw mangoes are available, boil two mangoes in two glasses of water for 15-20 minutes. Strain the boiled contents and give it to the affected person. Use half a cup or so at a time. You may add salt or sugar to it.
Good and healthy teeth are an amazing balance of aesthetic beauty and engineering. The main cause of toothache is decay of teeth which results from decomposition of food particles on them. It is basically a breakdown or destruction of the tooth structure by demineralization. The sugars and carbohydrates which are present in the mouth produce acids as a result of microbial attack. These acids erode the teeth causing teeth to decay!
1. Dip a swab of clean cotton in clove oil and place it under the aching tooth. It relieves pain instantly. This remedy helps to decrease infection due to its antiseptic properties.
2. A mixture of ginger and roasted alum when applied to the aching tooth twice or thrice a day eases the pain.
3. To one teaspoonful of ginger and roasted alum, add a few drops of mustard oil to make the paste fairly consistent to apply . This ensures a speedy recovery and application of this paste at regular intervals eases the pain considerably.
4. Take about 100 gms of Neem (Margosa tree) root and coarsely powder it. Boil this in about one litre of water over gentle heat till the quantity is reduced to half of the original volume. Strain the decoction and add a spoonful a table salt. Keep this lukewarm decoction in the mouth and retain it for some time before gargling. Repeating this relieves pain.
Wounds have been described in Ayurveda as Vrana. Almost all kinds of wounds have been described including traumatic ones . The doshic involvement in Vrana is usually tridoshaja, however, the involvement of doshas varies with the stage of Vrana. For example, if pain is a characterizing symptom, involvement is of Vata, if the Vrana is in the advanced stage, the involvement of Pitta is predominant and when infected it leads to pus formation, the involvement of Kapha is noted.
1. Application of turmeric paste or even turmeric powder over the affected area provides help since turmeric is known to contain antibacterial principles.
2. A piece of raw turmeric (unpowdered) or alternatively, a teaspoonful of it boiled in a glass of milk taken internally offers relief from pain associated with wounds.