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Let food be thy medicine and medicine be thy food

29 August 2018 12:01 am - 1     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}


Kamani is a 34-year-old mother of three from Bandarawela. Following a surgery for a brain tumour she was partially paralyzed. A distraught husband who is a farmer then took her to an Ayurvedic doctor. The treatment took a few months. However, it helped the poor woman to walk around once again.   

Clarence is a sub editor at a newspaper. A cardiologist at a private hospital recommended him a coronary bypass surgery after having found that his arteries were blocked. Clarence was distressed as he did not have the money to do the surgery immediately. Meanwhile, a friend suggested he should consult a well-known Ayurvedic practitioner in Anuradhapura. He did and following the treatment Clarence again did the tests at a hospital to see his condition and found that his arteries were clear.   

Varuna, an executive at a five star hotel in Colombo, met with an accident. One of his legs was broken as a result. A surgery was performed by a renowned doctor. However, much to the disappointment of this executive, the surgery was a failure and his leg kept dangling sideways after the operation. Varuna’s hopes of resuming work at the hotel were shattered. His family took him to an Ayurveda practitioner in Divulapitiya. He said he would fix the mistake of the surgery and make the patient walk again but that may take time. Varuna was asked to be warded at the Ayurveda hospital. Now the young man is receiving treatment at the hospital with a ray of hope.   

We could give a long list of instances where Ayurvedic practitioners have proven their versatility over western medical practitioners. That is why there is a need for a national health policy through which the government will give equal status to western medicine or allopathy, various forms of ayruveda, homeopathy and acupuncture. At present western medicine is given the highest priority and that may be one of the reasons why it is not a vocation but a big profit-making business, specially in the private health sector.  Furthermore in public hospitals, Ayurvedic doctors do not go on strike and cause suffering to tens of thousands of people, as does the Government Medical Officers Association (GMOA). Ayurvedic doctors also carry out humble and silent service.   

Most of us know the story about how the Buddha told his physician Jiwaka to go throughout the country and find even a single plant that did not have some medicinal value. The physician came back and said every plant he found did have some medicinal value. The same is true in Sri Lanka today but we have not allocated enough financial and human resources to find and develop these medicinal plants.   

Not only at government level this also need to be done at the home or family level. As we pointed out last week, despite urbanization and hundreds of apartment complexes coming up, there are several thousands of hectares of home gardens where people could grow not only grains, vegetables and fruits but also medicinal plants.   

We need to go into the highest stage of home gardens producing Green Medicine. By this way we could bring in powerful herbs that supercharge our health and target our most persistent issues such as stress, mental focus, hormone imbalances, energy levels, even “incurable” chronic diseases. This is the next revolution in plant-based healing and natural health.   

Remedy: Ancient Medicine for Modern Illness, is a hard-hitting, transformative -- and free -- documentary series exploring the most powerful herbal medicines known to us. It could be accessed via   

As Hippocrates, the father of modern medicine, said “Let food be thy medicine and medicine be thy food”. Otherwise more than half of our income is spent on treatment of various illnesses, most of which are caused because we consume poisoned or polluted food.   

  Comments - 1

  • Dr wijeratne Wednesday, 29 August 2018 07:49 PM

    Absolute truth. Very well researched article

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