Friday, August 3, 2012

Ayurveda Herbs

Black pepper (मरिच)Piper

Latin Name – Piper nigrum

मरिच कटुकम तीक्ष्णम दीपनम कफवातजित ।

उष्णम पित्तकरम रुक्षम श्वास शूल क्रीमीन्हरेत ॥

तत आर्द्रम मधुरम पाके नातिउष्णम कटुकम गुरु ।

किंचित तीक्ष्णगुनम श्लेष्मप्रसेकी स्यादपित्तलम ॥

                            भा प्र

Black pepper probably is the one of the most used spice all across the globe. It is widely used to enhance the taste and also to provide a flavor to the food. Ancient wisdom of Ayurveda says, it is pungent in taste, sharp in action and stimulates digestive fire. It is known for its potential action over Kapha and Vata. Black pepper, due to its property of being hot, helps in liquefying the Kapha. Due to this property it becomes a drug of choice in cases of chronic cough wherein sputum is very sticky and creates congestion in respiratory system. That is the reason why in cases of Bronchial Asthma fine black pepper powder is advised for internal use. It immediately helps in broncho dilation due to stimulation effect and mobilizes the phlegm from bronchioles. It contains an alkaloid called piperin which makes this herb an excellent catalyst.

Black pepper increases digestive juices and stimulates digestive fire. In cases of gaseous bloating and chronic indigestion it is considered to be an effective medicine. It is hot in potency, so should be avoided by Pitta personalities and people with skin sensitivities. It is dry in nature, so effective in obesity for proper fat metabolism and may increase cellular activity.

Black pepper is traditionally known for its anthelminthic effect for ages. It is given in very small doses along with green tomato to kids in folklore practices. It can also be used in cases of tooth ache in form of decoction for gargles.

High doses of this herb may result in abdominal pain, and urethral burning. Excessive use of black pepper in food as spice and flavor may result in stomach burning and gastritis. So it should be consumed in low quantity under the physician supervision only.

Metabolic taste of tender or green form of the pepper is sweet. It is not so hot in potency and heavy to digest. It is good mucolytic and also increases pitta. One pinch of the black pepper powder along with one tea spoon of honey at night helps in relieving the respiratory congestion and as per traditional believe also enhances the immunity of respiratory tract.

Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Ayurveda Herbs

Traditional system of medicines resorts that primary aim of this bodily world is to take care of the well- being. Prime state of the health is the key to success in all endeavours of life. Ayurveda resides in our life at every step knowingly or unknowingly. We are bringing Ayurveda facts from the kitchen. We use these herbs in and out and probably in our all meals.

Ginger (अदरक)ginger

Latin Name – Zingiber officinale

आर्द्रीका भेदिनी गुर्वी तीक्षणोष्णा दीपनी मता।
कटुका मधुरा पाके रूक्षा वातकफापहा ।
भोजनाग्रे सदा पथ्यम लवणार्द्रक भक्षणम ।
अग्नि संदीपनम रुच्यम जिव्हा कंठ विशोधनम ।
भा प्र
Ginger is one of the most common spice used in Indian kitchen and also world over. It breaks down stools due to its property of sharpness. The herb is predominant of fire quotient thus helps in promoting digestive fire. Due to its hot potency it also ignites digestive fire and becomes a very good medicine in cases of indigestion. In chronic cases of indigestion, it is advisable to have a small piece of ginger along with hot water. It is given for internal use in form of hot infusion in cases of rheumatoid arthritis. It is pungent in taste and mitigates Vata due to hot property while it helps in liquefaction of mucous (Kapha) and drains out the lymph. In cases of pain and congestion of throat, one can use hot infusion of Ginger for gargles. It reduces pain and removes Kapha.

In cases of common cold and cough where in mucous is not thoroughly drained, Ginger along with honey is given to produce mucolytic effect. Ginger contains zingirol and 1- 3 % of volatile oils. Dry form of ginger is an effective herb for abdominal colic. Essentially it is given in form of hot infusion. Dry ginger powder is considered very effective in Hypovolemic shock to restore peripheral blood circulation. It is rubbed constantly on hands and feet to restore thermodynamics.

Ginger is hot in potency, so it should be cautiously used in Pitta personality types and also Pitta disorders. It aggravates Pitta, so it should be avoided in cases of Gastritis as it may result in gastric irritation and symptom like epigastric burning may increase. Hypertensive patients should use ginger in moderate quantity only.
Ancient wisdom of life says, “consumption of a small piece of ginger smeared with salt before meal is a healthy practice. It stimulates digestive fire, increases taste, and clears tongue and throat.”

My suggestion, people suffering with hypertension should avoid smearing it with salt. Instead Epsom salt can be used.


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