Dubai: On Ayurveda Day (October 23), doctors in the United Arab Emirates have declared that India’s ancient medical system should be practiced as a way of life to take full advantage of it.
Dr Mamta Suresh Radder, Medical Director and Chief Consultant of the Sri Tattva Panchakarma Ayurvedic Center in Dubai, said: “Ayurveda is one of the oldest and best documented systems of medicine, equally relevant to modern era. It is not just a medical system, but a manifestation of our symbiotic relationship with nature.
She added that the main purpose of Ayurveda is to maintain balance in life.
“He champions every aspect of our lives that brings us closer to achieving this goal. Our diet, profession, activities, thought process and almost every aspect of our lifestyle can be shaped by the principles of Ayurveda. When people think of Ayurveda as traditional medicine, what we would like to add is that it is a way of life. Ayurveda teaches us how to maintain health as it should be. After all, health is nothing but a dynamic expression of life.
Ayurveda in the United Arab Emirates
Although Ayurveda is considered a medical science of Indian origin, it has also been strongly influenced by Arabic medicine. Herbs and spices brought by Arab traders from around the world have found a place in the pharmacies of Indian apothecaries for centuries, Dr Radder said.
“The UAE has always supported efficient medical systems around the world… As early as 2002, the country started licensing TCAM [Traditional, Complementary and Alternative Medicine] practitioners,” she said.
Currently, there are more than 200 Ayurvedic doctors recognized by the Ministry of Health and Prevention practicing in the UAE.
“Practitioners and clinics work under the aegis of government regulatory authorities, which ensure that the delivery of Ayurvedic healthcare meets the standard of excellence. This is actually done in a very strict and disciplined manner with routine inspections and suggestions from the authorities.
Regarding service delivery, she said the government of Dubai has included Ayurveda even in basic insurance schemes, enabling people to have access to Ayurvedic medicine and therapies.
She pointed out that Ayurveda can be used in the prevention of disease and the preservation of good health. “We look forward to bringing Ayurveda into the daily lives of people in the UAE, bringing health to family and society.”
The Emirates Ayurveda Graduate Association (EAGA), a group of physicians practicing Ayurveda in the United Arab Emirates, plans to reach the public with awareness programs and campaigns so that more people can enjoy the benefits of this science” , said Dr. Radder, who is also a founding member and past president of EAGA.
Dr. Suresh Viswakumar, General Practitioner in Ayurveda at NMC Medical Center, Al Majaz in Sharjah, explained the importance of Ayurveda Day.
“Ayurveda is considered India’s gift to the world. Every year, the Government of India through the Ministry of AYUSH celebrates Ayurveda Day, which is the birthday of Lord Dhanvantari, the Hindu god of medicine. It happens to be the 13th lunar day of the month of Ashwin in the Hindu calendar and it falls on October 23 this year,” he said.
This year’s theme is ‘HarDin HarGhar Ayurveda’ which translates to ‘Every Day Every Household Ayurveda’. “The goal this year is to spread this holistic health message around the world in collaboration with the governments of other countries.”
With a vast repository of medicines to cure diseases, he said, Ayurveda places more emphasis on social and preventive medicine.
Dr Viswakumar said that Ayurveda comprehensively counsels and intricately weaves together the fabric of good health, with the elaboration of Dinacharya (daily regimen), Ritucharya (seasonal regimen) and Swasthavritta (prevention of disease through holistic approach).
“Health is a matter of habits and routines. The key to good health is to practice the mantra of being in harmony and at peace with yourself and the serene world around you. Healthy eating habits, regular and moderate exercise and restful sleep are the basic mantra for having an excellent metabolism and this translates into well-being,” he said.
Food and Ayurveda
Dr. Shareefa Thesni, President of EAGA for 2022-23, who works with the Ayurvedic Alternative Medical Center in Ajman, took the opportunity to give some Ayurvedic tips for healthy eating.
“The food we eat has effects on the nourishment of the body and general well-being. Ayurveda recommends a sattvic diet. This makes a person energetic and vital and emphasizes the consumption of whole foods, grains, lentils, vegetables, lean meats, healthy fats, newspapers and spices,” she added.
Replace tea and caffeinated beverages with herbal tea containing tulsi (holy basil), cinnamon, black pepper and dried ginger, with raisins, lemon juice or jaggery (traditional unrefined sugar dark brown), said Dr. Thesni.
She also recommends “golden milk,” made by boiling half a teaspoon of turmeric powder with 150ml of milk. A compound in turmeric called “curcumin” has been shown to fight inflammation in the body, she added.
Additionally, she suggested garlic milk, made by boiling 10g crushed garlic cloves with 40ml milk and 40ml water until reduced to half, then strained . “This milk will help reduce fat accumulation and relieve flatulence. Spices like fennel, cumin, caraway [ajwain] the seeds and fenugreek add rich flavors and are packed with nutritional benefits. As supplements, aloe vera, mint, Amla [Indian gooseberry] can also be added,” Dr. Thesni said.