With the outbreak of the COVID 19 epidemic, the entire mankind around the world is suffering. Strengthening the body’s natural defence system (immunity) plays a significant role in maintaining optimal health.
As we all know, prevention is better than cure, although there are currently no drugs for COVID-19 treatment, it is best to take preventive measures to enhance our immunity during these tough times. The Ministry’s guidelines on post-COVID management also recommend adequate sleep, rest, and a balanced nutritious diet; looking for early warning symptoms (such as high fever, breathing difficulties, unexplained chest pain, etc.), and regularly take medications as recommended for COVID-19 diseases, as well as for managing Comorbidities (if any). It said that a holistic strategy is needed to provide follow-up care and improve the health of all patients who have recovered from COVID.
Ayurveda, the science of life, spreads the gifts of nature in maintaining a happy and healthy life. The extensive knowledge of Ayurveda in preventive health care is derived from the concepts of “Ritucharya” (seasonal care) and “Dinacharya” (daily regimes) to maintain a healthy life. This is a plant-based science.
The simplicity of self-awareness and the harmony that everyone can achieve by improving and maintaining their immunity is emphasized across Ayurveda’s classical scriptures.
The following self-care guidelines for preventive health measures and immune improvement, with relevant reference to respiratory health, are recommended by the Ministry of AYUSH. These are also supported and recommended by Ayurvedic literature and scientific publications.
Ayurvedic Immunity Boosting Measures
1. Chyawanprash prevents COVID-19: Is it effective?
Earlier, the Ministry of AYUSH recommended that Chyawanprash should be taken in the morning with warm water/milk under the guidance of an Ayurvedic doctor. However, the question here is-Can taking Chyawanprash provides protection against COVID-19 infection?
Chyawanprash is enriched with minerals, vitamins, and effective antioxidants, which can help strengthen the immune system and prevent a series of health problems. It is believed that the high vitamin C content in Ayurvedic herbs can help you improve immunity, metabolism and prevent various viral and bacterial infections, including the common cough and cold problem.
Therefore, the idea is that taking this Ayurvedic product may help strengthen immunity against infections including COVID-19. It is important to note that no scientific research can prove that Chyawanprash can prevent or cure COVID-19. Chyawanprash can only boost your immunity.
Benefits of Chyawanprash
It is claimed that using Chyawanprash has some health benefits:
- Stimulate immunity against various infections.
- It purifies the blood and excretes contagions or toxic from the body.
- It promotes metabolism and helps weight loss.
- It can help slow down the effects of the aging process.
- It also promotes healthy cholesterol.
- It normalizes blood pressure.
- It improves digestion and relieves constipation.
- Nourish reproductive tissue.
- Moreover, Chyawanprash can be consumed by everyone, including children and the elderly.
Here’s How to Use Chyawanprash to Boost Immunity
According to the recommendations of the AYUSH Ministry, one teaspoon of Chyawanprash with warm water/milk should be taken in the morning under the supervision of a registered Ayurvedic physician. It is believed that Chyawanprash is an effective remedy in the post-recovery phase in clinical practice.
Parents who plan to give Chyawanprash to their children should consult a doctor, as the dosage depends mainly on their digestion.
2. Drink decoction(Kadha) or Herbal tea made from Basil (Tulsi), Cinnamon (Dalchini), Black pepper (Kalimirch), Dried ginger (Shunthi ), and Raisin (Munakka). Add natural sugar (jaggery) and/or fresh lemon juice as per your taste.
3. Golden Milk– Put half a teaspoon of Turmeric (Haldi) powder into 150ml of hot milk-once or twice a day.
4. Simple Ayurvedic Procedures
- Oil pulling therapy– take 1 tablespoon of coconut oil or sesame oil in your mouth. Do not drink, swish it in your mouth for 2 to 3 minutes, spit it out, and then rinse with warm water. Oil pulling therapy can be done once or twice a day.
- Nasal treatment- Apply Ghee/Coconut oil/Sesame oil in both nostrils (Pratimarsh Nasya) in the morning and evening.
- According to the recommendations of the AYUSH Department, do Pranayama, Yogasana, and meditation for at least 25- 30 minutes.
- Drink warm water throughout the day.
- It is recommended to use spices such as Turmeric (Haldi), Coriander (Dhaniya), Cumin (Jeera), and Garlic (Lahsun) in cooking.
During Sore throat/Dry cough
- Use fresh Caraway (Ajwain) or Mint (Pudina) leaves for steam inhalation every day.
- Lavang (Clove) powder mixed with natural honey/sugar, taken 2-3 times a day, can relieve a cough or throat irritation.
These measures usually treat normal sore throat and dry cough. However, if these symptoms persist, it is best to consult a doctor.
In addition to this, the Union Ministry of Health issued a post-COVID-19 management protocol on Sunday, providing comprehensive follow-up care and well-being of recovered patients. Among the several suggestions, the Ministry of Health recommends healthy eating, moderate exercise, such as yoga, and seeking social support or counseling. The ministry also proposed several home remedies and Ayurvedic medicines to boost immunity.
Health Ministry stated that it has been observed that after the acute coronavirus ailment, recovered patients may continue to report various symptoms and signs, including fatigue, body pain, cough, sore throat, difficulty in breathing, etc. The recovery period may be longer for patients who have a more severe form of the disease and those with pre-existing illnesses.
It appended: The follow-up care and well-being of all recovered sufferers post-COVID needs a holistic method. Heeding this, the Ministry of Health has issued a post-COVID management protocol. This provides a comprehensive holistic approach for managing patients who have recovered enough from COVID for home care. This protocol is not intended to be used as a curative/preventive treatment method.
Here’s the complete post-COVID tracking protocol:
1. At individual level
- Taking AYUSH medicines (prescribed by qualified practitioners of AYUSH) to enhance immunity.
- Continue to maintain COVID proper behaviors such as physical distancing, using a mask, hand sanitizer, and respiratory hygiene.
- Drink plenty of warm water (if not contra-indicated).
- If health permits, household work should be done regularly.
- Professional work will be resumed in a graded manner.
- Do moderate/mild exercises.
- Daily practice of Yogasana, Pranayama, and meditation should be performed as per the scope of health permits or regulations.
- Walk at an allowable comfortable pace every morning or evening.
- A balanced and nutritious diet, preferably a freshly cooked soft diet that is easy to digest.
- Have adequate rest and sleep.
- Avoid smoking and drinking alcohol.
- Respiratory exercise prescribed by the treating physician.
- Take regular medication as recommended for COVID and comorbidities (if any). The doctor to be informed always about all medications that the individual is taking (Theotherapy/AYUSH) to avoid prescription interaction.
- Self-health monitoring at home – You must monitor your blood pressure, temperature, blood sugar (especially for diabetic patients), pulse oximetry, etc. (if medical advice is available).
- If your cough/throat persists, do gargle with salt water and take steam inhalation. Add a lot of herbs/spices for steam inhalation. Primarily needed medicines should be taken on the advice of a doctor or a qualified physician of Ayush.
- Look for early warning symptoms like breathlessness, shortness of breath, high fever, Sp02.
2. At the community level
- Recovered individuals use social media, community leaders, opinion leaders, and religious leaders to share their positive experiences with friends and relatives to raise awareness and eliminate myths and stigma.
- You should take the support of community self-help groups, qualified professionals, and civil society organizations for rehabilitation and recovery processes (social, medical, occupational, livelihood).
- Seek psychosocial support from community health workers, peers, and counselors. If needed, please seek mental health support services.
- Participate in group sessions such as meditation and yoga, and take all appropriate precautions, such as physical distancing.
3. In a healthcare facility setting
- The first follow-up (telephonic/physical) appointment/visit should be done within 7 days after discharge, preferably at the hospital where she/he was treated.
- Follow-up visits/subsequent treatment may be performed by AYUSH practitioners/ qualified homeopathic/medical institutions closest to other medical systems.
- Because potentially unknown drug-drug interactions may cause serious adverse events (SAE) or adverse reactions/effects, poly-therapy should be avoided.
- Patients who have undergone home isolation will go to the nearest medical facility if they complain of persistent symptoms.
- Severe cases requiring intensive care support will require a more stringent follow-up.
In the absence of specific treatment or a safe vaccine for COVID-19 illness, taking precautions in all possible maybe our best action against coronavirus infection.