Kerala can be surely called as the Mecca of Ayurveda. Inspired by a 5000 year-old system of healing, the Kerala Ayurveda experience is beneficial as well as refreshing. Known the world over for its time-tested therapies, age-old traditions, medicated massages, steam baths and herbal diets, Ayurveda is the favourite health care amongst inlanders and foreigners alike.
Being greatly in demand, Ayurveda has ushered in a high demand for herbs and other medicinal plants that form the base for Ayurvedic medicines, massages and baths. These magic leaves hold the key to many diseases and disorders of the modern generation. A part and parcel of every household at one point of time, the herbs which had slowly disappeared have now proudly found their way back into homes, spas, resorts and other therapy centres. This slow but sure return is playing an important role in the balance of life and the ecosystem.
Much before the world embraced Ayurveda, Kerala welcomed it with open arms. The state’s favourable climate along with the natural treasure of medicinal plants and herbs make it the ideal home for Ayurveda.
Perfecting nature’s healing touch
Kerala is probably the only place on earth where the system of Ayurveda is practiced to perfection. Ayurveda, the age old system of medicine bestows Kerala with the most natural and holistic means to wellness. Ancient books prefer Monsoons as the most effective period for Ayurvedic treatment. The cool but sometimes humid weather opens the pores of the skin to an optimum, making it more responsive to Ayuvedic medicines and oils.
Rejuvenation Therapy (Rasayana Chikitsa)
This therapy helps to firm up the skin and to refresh and fortify the body tissues so as to attain perfect health and long life. It also increases primary vigour (Ojas) and significantly improves mental alertness (Sattva). This process increases the resistance of the body as a whole. The therapy consists of stimulating head and face massages with medicinal oils and creams, body massages by means of hand and foot with medicated oil or powder, internal rejuvenating medication rounded off with herbal or medicated steam bath.
Body Immunization and Longevity Treatment (Kayakalpa Chikitsa)
This helps in increasing the immunity of the system. An all inclusive treatment for slowing the process of aging and stopping the degeneration of body cells, it involves complete and comprehensive body care routines. It includes the intake of specially made Ayurvedic medicines and diet called Rasayana.
Body Sudation (Sweda Karma)
The therapy is highly advisable for pain in general and for the treatment of certain rheumatic conditions in particular. Medicinal steam baths removes impurities from the body, enhance skin tone and complexion and arrests fat accumulation. Valuable herbs and certain herbal leaves are boiled together and the steam is allowed to pass over the body for 10 to 20 minutes everyday. Herbal oils or herbal powders are thoroughly massaged by hand. This improves the circulation of blood and tones up the muscles.
An Ayurveda diet consisting of herbal juices aids in slimming. Medicated massages with herbal powder and herbal oils form another integral part of this programme.
Beauty care therapy
Treatments like herbal face packs, herbal oil massages and herbal tea intake enhances the complexion immensely and also aids in body beautification.
Mental and Physical well being (Meditation and Yoga)
Well researched mental and physical exercises are included to achieve good health and achieve peace of mind through techniques such as:
- Disciplined behavior (yama)
- Self purification (niyama)
- Body postures like padmasana
- Control of breathing (pranayama)
- Control of the senses (pratyahara)
- Mind fixation on a selected object (dharana)
- Meditation (dhyana)
- Samadhi – the restful state in which you experience absolute well being
Overall Fitness (Panchakarma Treatment)
A five step treatment that refines the body, organs, mind, breath, nerves and blood and ensures complete physical and mental well being.
Therapy for chronic headaches, insomnia, mental stress, cases of hysteria , hallucination, insanity (Dhara)
The therapy involves the pouring of herbal oils, medicated milk or buttermilk and decoctions on the forehead in a specialized fashion. The other related treatments include Oordhwanga Dhara for eyes, ears and skin, Takra Dhara for severe headaches, loss of memory and insanity and Sarvanga Dhara which is good for both head and body.
Treatment for alleviation of osteoarthtitis, leukemia etc. (Snehapanam)
The treatment involves the intake of medicated ghee which is gradually increased over a fixed period of time.
Treatment for facial paralysis, dry feeling in the nostrils, mouth and throat, severe headaches and burning sensation in the head (Sirovasti)
A leather cap is fitted on the head and warm herbal oils are poured into it for a specific time as per the physician’s directions.
Therapy for rheumatic disorders, spondilosis, paralysis, hemiplegia, nervous weakness and related disorders (Pizhichil)
Application of lukewarm herbal oils with clean linen all over the body by trained masseurs in a rhythmic style. The duration is 1 to 1 ½ hrs daily for a time period of 1 to 3 weeks.
Treatment for paralysis, obesity, hemiplegia and rheumatic diseases (Udvarthanam)
A thorough massage using medicated herbal powders.
Treatment for muscular skeletal disorders due to accident and trauma (Marma chikitsa)
Therapy that targets the very sensitive vital points of the body (107 marmas)
Treatment for nasal diseases (Nasyam)
Vapour inhalation of medicated herbal liquids, oil decoctions and ghee to drive out the diseased factors from the head and neck region.
Treatment for ailments of the ear (Karnapooranam)
Application of medicated oils in the ear for about 5 to 20 minutes helps cleanse as well as cure the specific disorder.
Treatment for preventing cataract and strengthening vision (Tharpanam)
Treatment to strenghten the optic nerve of the eyes and is instrumental in the prevention of cataract.
Therapy to treat muscle degeneration, rheumatism, sport injuries, joint ache, emaciation of the whole body or part of the body and also certain skin diseases (Njavarakizhi)
The whole body is treated with rice packs in the form of boluses tied in muslin bags and the resulting perspiration is effective for the same.
Facts about Kerala
Location : Southwestern tip of India
Area : 38,863 sq. km.
Population : 3,18,38,619 (as per census 2001)
Capital : Thiruvananthapuram (Trivandrum)
Language : Malayalam, English is also spoken.
Religion : Hinduism, Christianity, Islam.
Time : GMT +5.30
Currency : Indian Rupee
Climate : Tropical
Summer: February to May
Monsoon: June to September
Winter: October to January
Ayurveda is the ancient science of medicine that originated in Kerala, India. It can boast of a heritage of 5000 years. It is still practiced in Kerala adhering to its age old tradition.
Kerala is the home of Ayurveda. It is known as the Science of Life. In Kerala, Ayurveda is passed on from generation to generation by expert doctors in this field. Its main focus is on generating health as well as curing the disease. Not only a healthy body, but a healthy mind and a healthy spirit is the main focus of Ayurveda.
The word Ayurveda had its origin in the Sanskrit language and it refers to the knowledge of life, where ‘Ayur’ means life and ‘Veda’ means science. Ayurveda aims at creating harmony in everyday life by applying self-knowledge and self-care. The basic concept of the Ayurvedic principles is that you are the only person who can control your life and healing.
Ayurveda pays heed to the exclusive needs of the body, balances the emotional and mental states and help to connect with your inner spirit. According to Ayurveda there are basically three energies that control the entire life of the universe. These three basic forms of energies are present in the entire process of growth, maintenance and decay.
Vata, pitha and kafa are the three basic energies. They combine in innumerable ways to create a unique individual. Ayurveda helps you to acquaint yourself with these energies that helps in a cleansing and purifying of the inner self, mind and body. We can control our body and mind by the nature of the food we eat, how we eat, exercise, relaxation and massage and the five sense therapies.
The treatments of disease in Ayurveda are classified into four namely shodan (cleansing); shaman (palliation); rasayana (rejuvenation), and satvajaya (mental hygiene).
Tablets, Powders, boiled teas and medicated oil made from medicinal plants and minerals are used for Ayurvedic treatments. As the medicines are naturally made, they are easily absorbed by the body without any side effects. Along with the medicines, strict diet, exercise and lifestyle are also apart of the Ayurvedic treatment.
Major Ayurvedic Treatments
The meaning of Panchakarma is ‘five treatments’. It is used to remove the toxic substances that has entered in our body through disease and malnutrition. Doshas that are not balanced will produce waste matter. Through Panchakarma the doshas are get rid of by means of sweat glands, intestines and urinary tracts. It is a rejuvenating experience with daily massages and oil treatments. Ayurveda advices Panchakarma treatment once in a year for strengthening body, mind and soul.
Swedana (Sweat Treatment)
Sweating helps to remove doshas as fluid. It helps us to remove the impurities through sweat glands. Swedana is done through active heating done within heated chamber, medicated steam, sauna, sunbathing, and exposure to fire, hot baths and hot packs.
Abhiyanga (Oil Massage)
It is the treatment of massaging the body with medicated oil. It is done by expert massage therapists. It is done with force to eliminate the doshas through the eliminating system. It is a pleasant and refreshing experience.
Shirodara is a treatment related to this in which balmy medicated sesame oil is poured over the forehead to calm down the nervous system and the Prana Vata (a dosha).
It consists of two basic treatments ‘snehana’ and ‘Swedana’. Swedana involves massaging medicated oil in the body to eliminate doshas. It is used to treat stress, insomnia, depression, arthritis, rheumatism etc. There are specific herbal oils prepared for each disease. Snehana involves lying in an oil bath which makes it easy for your body to absorb the medicines. Sometimes a combination of both these methods are used.
Samana (Herbal Cures)
After the toxins are removed from the body, the Ayurveda doctor may advise herbal cures to balance the doshas. They are advised in liquid form, as dried herbs or as powders or tablets. The blend of each herb is prescribed separately for a unique individual.
Ayurvedic treatment is a rejuvenating and refreshing experience.
Travelling has been part of the human life. History records many kinds of travelers, traveling for learning, traveling for discovering new land, traveling for leisure etc.
With the advent of modern transport, telecommunication, exciting facilities in boarding and lodging, the travel interest has grown very high that it has become an industry by itself.
The travel and tourism industry throughout the world has coordinated and helped man to travel for various activities. Medical tourism is one such activity which has brought a new dimension to health care.
In the initial stages of medical tourism, the main focus was to go to a place where better treatment facilities are available. This was mostly to Western countries where referral allopathic health care institutes reign supreme.
The fast developments in the allopathic health care industry in the developing countries has resulted in replicating the same standards of the west and offering the same at irresistibly lower rates. This has brought in a change the Global Medical tourism scenario.
India has always been acknowledged as a growing contender to the West in many spheres. The advancements have been excellent in Healthcare and so Kerala has moved into the list of Prime Destinations for Medical Tourism.
At the same time, many South East Asian Countries like Singapore, Thailand, etc have also worked hard to give stiff competition to Kerala. So to sustain this global recognition as a country for Medical tourism, Kerala has to include many other USPs into its service package for Medical tourism.
For this it is better to analyze what is the expectation of a global medical tourist.
- Medical Tourist wants a health care which is not available in his place.
- Wants the same health care that is available in his country at a much lower cost in the country of Medical Tourism.
- Wants to have the health care in a place that provides other holistic support for betterment of health.
- Wants an opportunity to also see and experience (tour& travel) the place of visit.
- Wants in addition to eco friendly surroundings, telecommunication and transport facilities of good standard.
- Limited problems in communication.
- Hygiene and cleanliness in the place of stay.
- The total cost of the visit which includes the treatments and also the other activities well within an economical limit.
The Medical Tourism Industry in Kerala has already geared up to meet all these requirements. In India, Kerala is found to very potential because of additional features.
The State has the best of Nature that is attractive for all kinds of Medical Tourists. The high literacy rate ensures better communications skills. The advancements in telecommunications are fully available throughout the State. The whole of Kerala is well connected by Road, Rail and by Air. The general hygiene and cleanliness are much better than other developing countries.
The cost of visit is definitely economical and much lower to many other countries. Kerala offers additional experience through verities of cultural Art forms, festivals, practice of traditional sciences, enchanting Nature in the form of beeches, mountains, valleys and rivers.
The most important unique contribution of Kerala is the Ayurvedic Health Care. With this great health science, Kerala caters not only to patients with chronic problems but also to a healthy tourist who wish to have a package of wellness combined with leisure and travel.
The wellness packages have been beautifully marketed and perfected by many resorts in Kerala. But what is not properly tapped is the Medical Tourism involving Ayurveda treatment for chronically ill patients.
It is the inherent strength of Ayurveda that it can offer positive improvement in almost all kinds of ailments. Even those health problems which are stubborn to the Allopathic treatment are found to respond to Ayurvedic treatment with concrete results.
Ayurveda is found to be the choice among all natural therapies to manage effectively all the above mentioned health problems of the 21st century man. Hence there is a great Medical Tourism potential for Kerala, provided the Ayurvedic healthcare is properly promoted and practiced.
At the same time the care should be taken to see that there is no dilution in the clinical management of the patient since this is the main back bone of Medical Tourism.
Additional support in the form of counseling and consultations may have to be provided to fix the guidelines for life style corrections and dietary modifications suitable for the country from where the patients come.
The most important aspect is the communication with the patient from the time of enquiry, for securing the Medical history, preparing the patient to the new experience of Kerala Ayurveda and also for a continuous follow up with appropriate Medical directions till the patient is Ayurvedically cured.
Since the Medical Tourists are from different countries with different styles of communication expertise need to be developed in all Ayurveda centers to become adepts in communication. This does not mean that they have to learn all the languages. What is important is to develop the skill to listen and understand the need of the Medical Tourist.
At present the Medical Tourism flow is mostly from Middle East, Germany, Italy, and Russia and in a limited way from other European countries. As patients seeking alternative health care is in large numbers throughout the Globe, the Medical Tourism institutions have to consistently explore and tap the potential customers in these new countries.
Kerala has the right Ayurveda Hospitals, Resorts, qualified Health Care Professionals, availability of efficacious formulations, traditional back ground, and a healing atmosphere, all at a highly economical rates. This is the U.S.P of Kerala in addition to other factors to become one of the most sought after destinations for Medical Tourism.
Ayurveda in Kerala
Wellness and Ayurveda are the terms more associated with and largely made for the tourists. Wellness programmes are offered as part of Kerala travel . That is the face of any science you can easily replicate and leisurely offer according to the convenience of those who come for it. Hence Kerala Ayurvedic wellness tourism is replicated with ample ease and comforts in many parts of the world. Currently, it is known primarily for massage treatments in spas and hotels.
Ayurveda in Kerala is not just a medicine with a large depth of philosophical, clinical and therapeutic significance, but also represents a philosophical and scientific breadth and complexity of large peculiar system of observation of the expression of nature.
What Ayurveda offers now a days is a paradigm shift, a different way to ‘observe’ and ‘use’ nature as best as we can and want, through a redefining and rereading of the use of unique technologies developed by the Western world.
The canvass of this great science of Ayurveda is broader and deeper than we thought of Kerala and Ayurveda have a rich culture and tradition. Tradition is a distillation of experience and therefore of evolutionary memory. It is through tradition that we find our true nature and recover what we have forgotten and is what made us lose sight of the meaning of things and of life itself. Among the oldest traditions of the world, Ayurveda, which is known as ‘traditional Indian medicine’, literally means ‘knowledge of life or the life span’ and that meaning goes far beyond the simple concept of wellness or care medical.
Authentic Ayurveda Health Tourism
When it comes to the health tourism aspect of Ayurveda, Kerala exploited it in a much deeper way and done a lot in this segment. With the strength of Ayurveda so powerful and the relevance of it so important, we need to focus more on propagating the medical side of it, even in ‘wellness offers’ to the tourists. So let us urge the stake holders of the industry to always try to give something unique and authentic and not to offer treatments and medicines for the convenience of the tourists. The traditional approach in Ayurvedic treatment which demands a way of life too has to be kept alive in a real way. Also the Kerala Governmental and Industry Associations must constantly monitor the services of the units in the sector.
Kerala, which means Land of Coconut Trees, is believed to have been built by God itself with 44 rivers, backwaters and 600km of coastline along with forests covering a third of the land. Its name already hints at its beauty and peacefulness, making it a great vacation destination. It is said that in Keralan cuisine and life, the humble coconut features so much that without it, they would not know how to live.
Trivandrum, Kerala is home to a beautiful ashram which is part of the famed Sivananda lineage, the Sivananda Vedanta Dhanwantari Ashram. There are 3 Sivananda ashrams in India – in the Himalayas, Kerala and Madurai. Ashram refers to home of a guru or saint. While physical postures or asanas are what yoga is commonly known for, in the yoga sutras of Patanjali, they are only 1 part of an 8 limbed path that guides a yogi’s life.
This stems from the belief that only in a healthy body does a healthy mind live. In asanas, one uses the body as an instrument to eventually connect with the higher self and universe. For visitors, it is advisable to visit the ashram from June to March, avoiding the sweltering summer months of April and May. For those interested in Ayurvedic treatments, it is best to go during the monsoon season of June to August when it is cooler as many techniques incorporate steaming.
It was at this time that I learnt from the guides who accompanied us that the many gods in Hinduism merely represented pieces of the whole puzzle, each showcasing different facets of the universal truth. It is said that humans created these stories in order to help them grasp the vast concept of the One.
My personal favourite is the story of Ganesha, the popular elephant God with an elephant face and a human body, the God of Beginnings and Remover of Obstacles. His big elephant ears and long nose remind us that one should learn to listen and breathe through life’s challenges. His small eyes signify concentration. His four hands hold on to objects like the axe which notes that in life, problems may come from attachment and there is a need for balance. In another hand he holds a rope, by which farmers used to control a cow, indicating how we should be able to control ourselves and our five senses from harm. Next, he holds a tusk, used to write, inspiring the attitude of constantly learning. Finally, he holds a sweet to remind us that life is still beautiful. And to top it off, he rides a tiny mouse as his vehicle of choice, to illustrate how contradictions can always exist.
All in all, India has been both nourishing and yet entirely educational, opening one’s eyes to so many extremes, contradictions which exist next to surreal idealism. It is certainly a place which lends itself to multiple trips, revealing new glimpses into India with each visit.
NAJIAH RAMLEE is a yogi in the works, who was pleasantly surprised to find greater peace and acceptance by going with the flow in the loud hustle and bustle of Indian cities. The multitude of curries, doughy treats and cottage cheese must’ve helped!
According to the ancient language Sanskrit, Ayurveda is a science, which gives complete knowledge for leading a long healthy life. The word Ayurveda in Sanskrit is a divine synthesis of two words ‘Ayur’ meaning prolonged existence, or longevity, and the word ‘veda’ meaning a base with a sound scientific knowledge.
The trivet of yoga, meditation, and massage are part and parcel of Ayurveda and the ancient vedic science of Ayurveda, it will become incomplete in their absence. To add more to Ayur or long life, it works in perfect combination that includes healthy way of living life, organic diet, pampering of body, relaxation of mind, and spiritual consciousness. All you have to do is gift self and your beloved the spectacular Ayurvedic packages of Ayurveda Tour India for a life that is not merely to be alive but to be well.
Sanskrit language defines Ayurveda as a science that gives absolute comprehension for long live. ‘Ayurveda’ in Sanskrit is a divine synthesis of two words ’Ayur’ meaning prolonged existence, or longevity and the word ‘Veda’ meaning a base with a sound scientific knowledge. As per Hindu Mythology the foundation of ayurvedic medicine is accredited to the physician of the divinity, Dhanvantari. Religions like Hinduism and Budhism significantly inspired many core concept of Ayurveda.
As a divine medicinal science it firmly emphasized on the process of developing vigorous metabolic system, enhancing good digestion, and an accurate exertion to bless the mortals with liveliness. Tripods like yoga, meditation and massage are equal parts of Ayurveda and the ancient Vedic science of Ayurveda and are incomplete in their absence. Adding to ayur or long life, it works in perfect combination that includes healthy way of living, organic diet, pampering of body, relaxation of mind, and spiritual consciousness.
In our daily modern life style full of stress, holistic approach of Ayurveda and Yoga retreat seems to be the last savior for a healthy body and mind. This age old method is very important to cure negative charges of the body, at the same time gift a disease free, anti-ageing, and attractive personality.
Having an ayurvedic vacation gives amazing moments to your intimate social circle with a dazzling self transformation of beauty, confidence, and magnetism. Present yourselves and beloved spectacular Ayurvedic packages of Ayurveda Tour Kerala to live a life that is not merely to be alive but to be well.
Ayurveda is the oldest ever living medical module in the world offering an affluent, comprehensiveness prospect to a healthy life. The beyond question source of information in this arena comes from the Vedas. Vedas is considered as the divine encyclopedias that counseled the science of Ayurveda. Ayurveda gets its deep meaning especially from the fourth of the divine series called Atharvaveda which dates back to around 1000 BC.
Vedic Science is the original source of Ayurveda and Ayurvedic therapies. The 500-600 B.C., will be distinctly noted in the history as well as dark ages as the time of introduction of Ayurveda. History assertively echoes the contribution of Agasthya, Charaka, Sushurta, Kashyapa, etc. Such well-versed scholars who researched and found the solutions from the Vedas the sources to all illness, diseases, and drug-medicines to compile the samhitas for human welfare.
The physicians took the Samhitas as a source to learn and incorporate the knowledge of Ayurveda to implement for preventing as well as healing illness; moreover it is also philosophy of living.
The prime aim of the philosophy of Ayurveda is to get rid of the cause of disease and re-installs balance to our system. As per Ayurveda, we are made of three bodies’ physical, astral, causal in other words body, mind and soul.
In more authentic way, Ayurvedic philosophy states that the human body is composed of five elements – space, air, fire, water, and earth – in diverse compounding form three somatic body fluids – Vata, Pitta, and Kapha. These factors have to stay in perfect equilibrium; once it breaks it leads to ill health.
To embrace Ayurveda means exemption from death and disease. Ayurvedic philosophy acts on the philosophy of building strong immune system to escape from diseases and to stay healthy. Ancient Vedic word for immunity is pardon of disease; disease is the result of negative thoughts and wrong lifestyle. Ayurveda believes in the relationship between, self, personality and everything that goes into our mental, emotional and spiritual being to give us good health.
Ayurveda states “Good Health the Greatest Wealth of Human”………
Ayurveda can be defined as the medical side of yoga. This trusted traditional natural healing system has been practiced in India for over 5,000 years.
Ayurvedic resorts are popular destinations for relaxation and rejuvenation in Kerala; ayurvedic hospitals meanwhile treat people more serious health problems.
What are the Benefits of Ayurvedic Medicine:
Ayurvedic is doing wonders for metabolic, stress related, and chronic conditions. Treatments turn effective in relieving the effects of surgery and debilitating treatments such as chemotherapy. Ayurveda is also famous for general rejuvenation and beauty care.
What is the Process for AyurvedicTreatment:
Ayurveda is a pranic system of medicine which acts to balance the body’s life energy known as the doshas. This balance can be attained by following diet, different types of massage, soaking the body with herbal liquid, and anointing the body with herbal leaves and powders. You will be evaluated by an experienced and qualified doctor and he will decide the treatment program that addresses the root of your problem. Usually, at least a couple of weeks are required to complete a full course of ayurvedic treatment. Though it is all possible to get simple renewal treatments like ayurvedic massage themselves.
When is the Best Time to Receive Ayurvedic Treatment in Kerala?
To go for a round of ayurvedic treatment the best time is during the rainy season that is from June to September. It is ideal because the atmosphere remains cool, moist, and dust free and helps the body’s pores to open, making it most receiving to herbal oils and therapy.
Where is Ayurvedic Treatment Available in Kerala?
Southern state of Kerala is full of renowned centres that offer ayurvedic treatments and the conducive climate and abundant supply of medicinal plants and herbs also makes it the right place to choose.
How Much Does Ayurvedic Treatment Cost?
Ayurvedic hospitals are the most affordable option. At these hospitals you are able to receive treatment for around $1,000 per month excluding accommodation.
What are the Best Ayurvedic Hospitals in Kerala?
The right places to get original ayurvedic treatment in India are the ayurvedic hospitals managed by the AryaVaidySala charitable institution and SreeChithraAyur Home. These hospitals are run excellently and follow the right treatment procedures according to the texts.
These places offer attractive discounts for stays during the monsoon season.