Ayurveda has been in practice for close to three millennia. Even today, India’s traditional medicine serves the healthcare needs of millions of Indians. But the Ayurveda faces a few challenges that need to be addressed.
- Ayurveda is an alternative medicine system with historical roots in the Indian subcontinent. The theory and practice of Ayurveda is pseudoscientific. Ayurveda is heavily practiced in India and Nepal, where around 80% of the population report using it.
What are the challenges associated with Ayurveda?
- Has few obsolete treatises: Ayurveda’s ancient treatises contain useful portions alongside obsolete ones. Hence, valuable health promotion and illness management observations need to be carefully filtered from outdated theories and socio-religious superstitions.
- Philosophical superiority: The belief in the philosophical superiority of Ayurveda has destroyed ancient medical writings from being revisable scientific treatises. This is highlighted by Usman Committee (1923) and the Chopra Committee (1948).
- Misinterpretations in practices: There is a flawed approach of making ancient concepts sound relevant by super-imposing current scientific findings upon them. This will lead to dangerously wrong clinical choices.
- Revise Ayurvedic treatises: A century ago, P.S. Varier of the Arya Vaidya Sala Kottakkal noted that the “Sareerasthana (section on body structure and function in the Ayurvedic classics) must firstly be revised and made clearer and the remaining parts must be suited to it.
- After this, the other important works should also be corrected. Further, necessary additions must be made either by translations or by collaboration with experts in portions still deficient.
- As a medical system, Ayurveda is valuable immensely for its observations. Ministry of AYUSH must take cognisance actions to revive Ayurveda.
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