Since the ancient time, India remains the superlative and centre of attraction for one reason or others. The 21st century is going to make India superlative in the field of Ayurveda Tourism as Finance Minister Jaswant Singh declared when the BJP Government was in power and called for India to become a “global health destination”. A number of factors are responsible for the growth of Ayurveda tourism in India as it is regarded as one of the oldest principles for the maintenance of health through therapeutic measures relate to physical, mental, social and spiritual welfare of human beings. The modern techniques used in surgery and the miracle drugs prove insufficient for chronic illness that forced the peoples all around the world to search of new alternative which they found in Indian Ayurveda. It is the holistic approach in preventing diseases, rejuvenating body system and extending the life span of human being. The meaning of Ayurveda is “Science of Life” which an alternative medicine for healthy lifestyle and natural healing system.
Kerala – Centre of Ayurvedic Treatment
Today, Kerala has become one of the prime attractions in India for Ayurvedic treatment. It has proved to the world by various therapeutic messages and fomentation techniques to provide relaxation to the stressed and strained as the most practical and sensible preventative medical system in the world. Wide ranges of Ayurvedic remedies are available in Kerala that include rheumatoid arthritis, osteoarthritis, gout, obesity, psoriasis, eczema, cervical spondylitis, back pain, frozen shoulder, gynecological problems, menopausal syndrome, genitourinary infections, uterine fibroids, acne, allergies, asthma, anxiety, arthritis, chronic fatigue syndrome, colds, colitis, constipation, depression, diabetes, flu, heart disease, hypertension, immune problems, inflammation, insomnia, nervous disorders, obesity, skin problems, ulcers, stress etc.
Broadly speaking, there are mainly two types of treatment in Ayurveda known as Shaman Chikitsa and Shodhan Chikitsa. Shaman Chikitsa is the treatment by using the various medicinal herbo-mineral preparations while Shodhan Chikitsa is a method of treatment known as cleansing therapy, which consists of five types of therapies combinedly known as the Panchakarma Chikitsa. It is the process by which the prevalent causes of the disease can be investigated and cured. It also helps to maintain the excellent health by the methods like cleaning the body, improve the digestion and metabolic process. Kerala Ayurvedic treatment is famous in the world and attracted the tourists from all over the world for Panchakarma.
Ayurveda in Kerala – Panchakarma Treatment
The God’s Own Country is not only famous for the backwater tourism, beach holidays, lush hill stations, exotic wildlife, waterfalls, sprawling plantations and paddy fields but also for its Ayurvedic treatment namely the Panchakarma – the five basic cleansing methods.
1. Vaman - Emesis Therapy
This is the process to clear the congestion in the lungs causing repeated attacks of bronchitis, colds, cough or asthma. By this therapy, the patient has to undergo the snehan and swedan, after that three to four glasses salt water is administered and finally the vomiting stimulation process takes place by rubbing the tongue. The therapy is adopted for chronic asthma, diabetes, chronic cold, lymphatic congestion to release the mucus to get instantly relieved.
2. Virechan: Purgation Therapy
This therapy is adopted when the indication like skin inflammation, eczema chronic fever, jaundice, urinary disorder etc. reflected in the body. The treatment of therapeutic purgation or a therapeutic laxative is administered by using the medicinal plants like senna leaves, flax seeds, psyllium husks or triphala in a combination that is appropriate for the individual person.
3. Basti: Enema Therapy
Basti commonly known as enema is one of the treatment modalities, which is the part of Panchakarma therapy in Ayurveda in which therapeutic implications are done to evacuate of the bowel, solidified fecal material by making the lumbosacral region lubricated. The therapy is applied for the treatment of vata disorders and relieves the patients who are suffering from constipation, distention, chronic fever, cold, sexual disorders, kidney stones, heart pain, backache, sciatica and other pains in the joints.
4. Nasya: Nasal Administration
The Ayurvedic medication of nose is commonly known as “Nasya” in which an excess of bodily humors accumulated in the sinus, throat, nose or head areas are eliminated. The symptoms of Nasya are indicated through Prana disorder, sinus congestion, migraine headaches, convulsions, and certain eye and air problems. There are mainly six types of Nasya which are Pradhamana Nasya mainly used for kapha types of diseases; Bruhana Nasya used mainly for vata disorders; Shaman Nasya used mainly for pitta-type disorders; Navana Nasya used in vata-pitta or kapha-pitta disorders and is made from decoctions and oils together; Marshya Nasya includes use of ghee/oil for a particular reason which itself is not a disease but is a result of some body disease/condition; Prati Marshya helps to open deep tissues and can be done every day and at any time to release stress.
5. Raktamoksha: Purification and Cleansing of the Blood
This Panchakarma therapy is required when the body is suffering from skin disorders, chronic itching, infections, hypertension and other circulatory conditions. By applying this therapy, elimination of the toxins and purification of blood is done through extracting a small amount of blood from a vein that relieves the patient from the tension created by the toxins in the blood. The process of extracting the blood also stimulates the spleen to produce antitoxic substances, which helps to stimulate the immune system. Toxins are neutralized enabling radical cures in many blood born disorders.
Ayurveda and Yoga Facilities in Kerala
The south Indian state of Kerala is famous all over the world for its special types of Ayurveda and Yoga facilities in southern peninsula comprised of Arabian Sea in the west, the Western Ghats in the east along with 44 networks of rivers. Today, the state of Kerala is heralded as the hub of Ayurvedic treatment in Indian subcontinent that mesmerized the tourists not only Ayurveda holidays but also for other attractions like beaches, backwaters, hill stations, exotic wildlife, waterfalls, sprawling plantations, paddy fields, festivals, art and architecture, temples, historical monuments, cuisine and many other charming destinations.
Special Kerala Ayurvedic Treatments
Some of the major Ayurvedic treatments of Kerala can be summarized as under:
This treatment is required when the patient is suffering from stress, nervousness, muscles stress, obesity, diabetes, skin diseases etc. Under this category, the patient has to undergo the whole body massage with specific medicated herbal oils that lower the degree of fatigue and stress, aging and improve sleep.
2. Shiro Dhara
This treatment is common which applies to all diseases like migraine, deafness, cranial nerves, facial paralysis, insanity, wounds etc.
3. Kati Vasti
This treatment alleviates lower back conditions like lumber spondylitis, inter vertebral slip disc, lumbago and sciatica.
4. Janu Vasti
This treatment is applied especially for arthritis of the knee joint.
5. Nadi Swedan
This treatment is meant for pain disorders of different sites.
6. Ila Kizhi/Podi Kizhi
This therapy is effective for various kinds of arthritis, spondylitis, muscular pains, back pain, sports injuries and for all other soft tissue inflammations especially joint pains.