Govt. of India promoting Ayurveda, Unani, etc.
(26-Sep-2010, 02:30 AM)inde Wrote: hey pals, looks like quite an intresting discussion we have here. I believe Nirmukta believes in having a decent sharing of view points between its members and not simply refusing to accept what someone else says n label it as Crap !

We call a spade a spade. We respect people, but we don't extend the same to ideas.

Quote:Modern science, allopathy whatever you call it, any science has its limitations.And for anything to flourish, needs if Ayurveda wasnt given patronage n cudnt make it worthwhile enough for you rationally n scientifically thinking souls to appreciate or understand it, its Ayurveda's problem. i was trying to say that during the emerging of buddhism n jainism n later during the british raj, it was'nt promoted and could not come up to prove itself.

The government is actively promoting ayurveda and yet it can't prove that ayurveda has the same efficacy as science based medicine (We don't call it allopathy. It is a retard word coined by homeopaths).

Quote:Ayurveda is not faith based n primitive. It has explanations and theories, some which is difficult to understand and accept in the present lifestyle. i suggest please read sanskrit versions of Susrutha Samhita dalhana teeka/ Charaka samhitha chakrapani teeka/ astanga hrudaya indu teeka before pushing the system aside as primitive and irrelevant..

Why not understand something in a better way and then dissect it ?

Ayurveda is not evidence based and yet people believe that it works. In other words it is faith. Ayurveda also has a primitive understanding of the human body. It considers that all matter is composed of five elements. It thinks diseases are caused by imbalances in the three dosas - vata, pitta and kapha and all a physician has to do is balance the dosas.

The book The Lord of The Rings has extensive explanations and theories. But we don't think they are true, do we? Evidence is what matters. So unless ayurveda goes through the kind of rigorous tests that science based medicine is subject to and prove that it can cure, we won't show any respect for it.
[+] 4 users Like Lije's post
I echo what Lije has written above, and would like to add a couple of things:

1) Inde, you've said twice now that "Ayurveda works". It may well be that some Ayurvedic remedies are scientifically valid and whose efficacy has been proven. (Why don't you provide us with examples by the way???) If that is the case, then we can assert that "remedy X works". It does not follow that "Ayurveda works". Take the example of Artemisinin, which I mentioned earlier in this thread. It comes from Traditional Chinese Medicine, and scientists in the sixties found the recipe in an ancient book. This was the only remedy in that book that was found to be scientifically valid and effective. Today it forms part of the most successful anti-malarial drug in the world. Artemisinin worked. But it does not follow that "TCM works".

2) You say "Modern science, allopathy whatever you call it, any science has its limitations". I see this argument from a lot of people who defend alternative medicine. Well science has limitations. But science is our best tool so far in understanding the natural world. The tools that you are suggesting as alternatives: Appeals to antiquity (it's ancient, therefore right), Personal experience (notoriously unreliable in determining efficacy of medicine) - are orders of magnitude less accurate. So if you say that science is good at understanding some medicine but not ayurvedic medicine, then this is nothing but the logical fallacy of special pleading - you're asking for special treatment when there is no case for why such special treatment should be given.

Finally, here's a funny story:

I once had a skin rash that was not going away - the itching was driving me crazy, calamine wasn't helping, and I didn't want to use a steroid cream. I then saw a herbal cream sold by Himalya (this is before my critical thinking skills developed folks!). Usual sales pitch - 100% natural, effective ayurvedic remedy for itching etc. I bought it. I then got curious and decided to see what's in it. It was an impressive-sounding ayurvedic preparation called "Yashad Bhasma". Which, as it turns out, is nothing but Zinc Oxide - the principal ingredient of calamine. Oh how I laughed. smile

(Funniness apart, I do think this nicely illustrates why an ayurvedic medicine might not be as natural/herbal/pure/whatever as its makers claim. It's all marketing.)

[+] 6 users Like unsorted's post
Even though most ayurvedic medicines don't work, there are those that are positively harmful. Have a look at this:


Quote:Patients are classified by body types, or prakriti, which are determined by proportions of the three doshas. The doshas allegedly regulate mind-body harmony. Illness and disease are considered to be a matter of imbalance in the doshas. Treatment is aimed at restoring harmony or balance to the mind-body system. Vata, composed of air and space, allegedly governs all movement in the mind and body and must be kept in good balance. Too much vata leads to "worries, insomnia, cramps and constipation....Vata controls blood flow, elimination of wastes, breathing and the movement of thoughts across the mind." Vata also controls the other two principles, Pitta and Kapha. Pitta is said to be composed of fire and water; it allegedly governs "all heat, metabolism and transformation in the mind and body. It controls how we digest food, how we metabolize our sensory perceptions, and how we discriminate between right and wrong." Pitta must be kept in balance, too. "Too much [Pitta] can lead to anger, criticism, ulcers, rashes and thinning hair." Kapha consists of earth and water. "Kapha cements the elements in the body, providing the material for physical structure. This dosha maintains body resistance....Kapha lubricates the joints; provides moisture to the skin; helps to heal wounds; fills the spaces in the body; gives biological strength, vigor and stability; supports memory retention; gives energy to the heart and lungs and maintains immunity...Kapha is responsible for emotions of attachment, greed and long-standing envy; it is also expressed in tendencies toward calmness, forgiveness and love." Too much Kapha leads to lethargy and weight gain, as well as congestion and allergies.

On the basis of the above metaphysical physiology, Ayurveda recommends such things as: to pacify Kapha eat spicy foods and avoid sweet foods, except for honey but don't heat the honey. Avoid tomatoes and nuts. Turkey is fine but avoid rabbit and pheasant. If you've got too much Pitta then try this: eat sweet foods and avoid the spicy. Eat nuts. To reduce Vata: eat sweet, sour and salty foods; avoid spicy foods. Nuts are good and so are dairy products.

Isn't it obvious that this kind of medicine can never ever be as powerful as good old scientific-modern medicine!?
Aditya Manthramurthy
Web Administrator & Associate Editor

An incoherent extract below from the website !

"Suvarnaprashan - An Ayurvedic Immunisation
( Keeps babies healthy and happy…)
Soil of India - tradition culture if India gave us many Great Philosophers, saints, Intellectuals, bravery heroes and great scientists. Do we think ever how can they maintain this tradition to produce such heroes? How they bring up them? For making such unbelievable characters like Ram, Krishna, Yagnvalkay, Vishvamitra, Panini, Sushrut, Charak, vagbhatt, Abhimanyu, Vashishtha, Valmiki, Saint Tulsidas, saint Ramdas, Swamy Vivekanand and many more how much they took pains? We must have to appreciate the efforts of such social, religious and government organizations making healthy society. Millions of rupees have been spending for making society healthy from our government and also international organization like WHO also spend for millions of dollars for it. For making awareness of health all organizations spending so huge budget for medical camps, for medical aids, education, seminars, campaigns and also compulsory vaccination. When we make attention on the result and on efforts, the result seems nearby zero. Although, the result of strong campaign we can see the awareness of physical health in urban society. But we never think over the mental and spiritual health of the Society."


Imagine the effects of parents opting for this quackery instead of vaccinating their babies !!


Ayurvedic relief for stressed techies
Sruthy Susan Ullas, TNN, Dec 11, 2010, 01.43am IST

BANGALORE: Modern India is looking to ancient India for solutions. Techies, weighed down by their 24/7 lifestyles, are increasingly turning to ayurveda to get rid of back pain, migraine, fatigue.

Sniffing this trend, a medical team headed by Dr L Mahadevan, consultant, Sharada Ayurvedic Hospital, Chennai, decided to do a study on the diseases affecting this urban community. The study, conducted by seven ayurvedic doctors from Chennai and Kerala, will be submitted to Ayush (the department of ayurveda, yoga and naturopathy, unani, siddha and homoeopathy).

The doctors believe the study will surely corroborate anecdotal evidence about ayurveda's efficacy. Already, doctors prescribe a detox regimen every quarter, besides regular exercise and healthy diet.

"I always believe ayurveda has fewer side-effects than other (medicinal) systems. It makes me feel secure and healthy," says Rajesh P, who works for a software company in Bangalore.

The study has investigated 150 techies in Bangalore and Chennai. Initial findings indicate that a majority had cervical and lumbar problems. Many suffered from back and neck pain. Significantly, the most common problem is chronic fatigue.

Other ailments that were noticed during the study: insomnia, migraine, infertility, obesity (which could lead to diabetes). Diseases like diabetes and heart diseases are rampant among other communities as well, and therefore cannot be associated with techies alone, the doctors point out. But the sedantry lifestyle makes IT professionals more vulnerable to these ailments.

Here's a word of caution. "Infections can be treated. But chronic diseases like these can be avoided only through changes in lifestyle. Whatever diseases people generally suffer from between 55 and 60, IT professionals get by the age of 45," says Dr Mahadevan L, an ayurvedic consultant.

Doctors suggest detoxifying the body once in three months, meditation, suryanamaskar, regular exercises, anti-oxidants, low-calorie and high-fibre foods, and at least three litres of water daily. The doctors also say that some stretching exercises have to be followed every hour during work. "It is up to individuals to go for ayurvedic treatment or any other alternative therapy. But the ayurvedic treatment is on the upswing," says Christina R, a software engineer.

The sheer lack of rational thought of people who believe this kind of faith based nonsense in this day and age is amazing. What's worse is that the Indian Govt. promotes this.

Here is Brain Dunning on the Detox myth.

Interesting video on, Homeopathy is nonsense...
More on this recently - an article titled A mantra worth marketing? in The Hindu:

Quote:It is then at an opportune time that the Government has commissioned a first-ever status report on Indian medicine and folk healing. The report, funded by the Department of Ayurveda, Yoga and Naturopathy, Unani, Siddha and Homeopathy (AYUSH) under the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, has recently been submitted to the Union Health Minister Ghulam Nabi Azad, strongly suggesting the establishment of a high-level commission to propagate and globalise Ayurveda. The report, over 300 pages long gives the example of China suggesting our Government “study and document” how China has succeeded in doing so with their traditional medicine.

Quote:Among other suggestions, the report, compiled after an exhaustive research spanning close to a year, puts the thrust on research in Ayurveda. “Only clinical outcomes published in international journals would lead to recognition of Ayurveda. The ground reality is that there is no legal scope to practice Ayurveda in most countries, primarily because of a lack of credible research.” This has necessitated the need to study and document the policies and strategies that China adopted over the years for globalisation of TCM.

My first reaction to this was that it's a good thing, but now I think - they are doing it backwards. They have decided that "Ayurveda works", and are now going to do research to demonstrate it. Cue lots of cherry-picking and confirmation bias. Also, note the talk of "marketing" and "promotion" - more clues as to what this is really about.
Is Ayurveda entirely quackery? I wouldn't go to an Ayurveda doctor to cure any disease, modern medicine does the job just fine. But I have given it a try for orthopaedic stuff, like sprains, or neck cricks. The oils, massages and the dressings seem to work, and better than modern medicine, where simple cold compresses/x-rays/bandage/pain-killers don't seem like they're doing enough.

Although I can't say it's been spectacular, at one point due to a severe injury, due to my lack of response to treatment, the "doctor" proceeded to remove the evil-eye or "dhrishti". In good faith, I did hope it would work, that was before any freethought. Troubled times can make people quite irrational.

Although, I think the average urban Indian would approach Ayurveda for such a purpose, orthopedic related injuries/bruises, or the massaging and relaxation.
(11-Dec-2011, 09:44 PM)RascarCapac Wrote: Is Ayurveda entirely quackery?.... But I have given it a try for orthopaedic stuff, like sprains, or neck cricks. The oils, massages and the dressings seem to work, and better than modern medicine, where simple cold compresses/x-rays/bandage/pain-killers don't seem like they're doing enough.

Whenever quack treatment or faith-healing appears to work, the first thing to check maybe whether there is some 'comandeering of science' going on. Instances of this phenomenon are provided by...

- Lee Silver of Princeton University (Link)

- Chennai-based freethinking doctors at Thinkfest 2011 (Link)

There are also instances of how primitive cultures may have found cures by trial-and-error without use of the scientific method (Link)

In my opinion there is no problem with Ayurveda its also a form of medication and I see no problem with it.
(18-Apr-2012, 06:00 PM)anky2930 Wrote: In my opinion there is no problem with Ayurveda its also a form of medication and I see no problem with it.

Ayurveda is indeed purportedly a form of medication, but the question is "Medication for what?" and in particular, "Medication for what illnesses?" Aficionados taking the stand that this system of healing is not narrowly obsessed with illness but with a more holistic view of health, insist that this question is besides the point, and very gratuitously offer to 'cure healthy people' who according to them, 'allopathy' gives a miss. Here is one example of such copping out. This is so convenient for Ayurveda proponents: Physicians practicing evidence-based medicine can do the hard work of curing actually sick people and in the meantime, self-proclaimed yogis can gallantly volunteer to to cure the healthy and take all the credit!

The following Nirmukta offerings on this topic maybe relevant here and useful to link to in such exchanges.
A Response to Dr. B.M. Hegde
A Critical Look At Baba Ramdev’s Claims
Facts about 'Alternative Medicine' (Lecture by Prof. Narendra Nayak)


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