Nothing has shaken the world so badly – physically, economically and psychologically – due to COVID 19. Barring a few isolated islands, Covid has spread its tentacles of fear, infections and death all over the globe.
But there is a ray of hope. It is now being increasingly proven that those who have a strong immune system will not succumb to the infection. And building a robust immunity is what India’s ancient system of Ayurveda has been focusing on, not the disease.
The ancient science has two formulae: prevent diseases by having a strong immune system; secondly, let the body fight the infection by further shoring up the immune system.
Immunity can be built up in two ways – either through vaccines or through prevention. But when there is a pandemic like COVID 19 which has come without notice or past history, vaccines take time to develop and by then, the virus would have destroyed lives and shattered economies.
Prevent with strong Immunity: The second aspect is prevention. The focus world over is on prevention, but unfortunately the understanding of prevention is short-term and limited to just washing hands frequently, sanitizing hands, wearing masks, social distancing and remaining indoors. Although these measures must be followed to a T, we also need to focus on the larger picture – the one on preventing diseases.
Ayurveda has been focusing on this – that prevention is the best cure.
If we look at the available data, patients who have succumbed to COVID 19 are primarily those who have been immune-compromised. At the other end of the spectrum, a large percentage of infected patients have got cured despite non-availability of drugs. This gives us a ray of hope -- that there is some factor that is helping patients come out of the viral infection. It one looks closely, it is because these patients had a strong and intelligent immune system, which involves the body’s defence and self-repair mechanisms.
If we consider the mechanism of infection, its progression and the outcome, we will find that it is one’s body that first sends its foot soldiers to battle the infection even when the patient is asymptomatic. The body has an inherent and appropriate response system to identify and battle any virus.
The response time depends upon an infected patient’s immunity level. If the immunity level is strong enough, he will be able to survive and come out of the infection faster, with minimum damage to various organs. If it is less it may take longer time, which would also involve higher levels of damages. If the same is seriously compromised, then he may not be able to survive.
Focus should be on ‘arming’ the body’s immune system: Therefore, it is very important that we also focus on ‘arming’ the body’s immune system and defence mechanism. This has been the basic treatment formula of Maharishi Ayurveda.
Shoring up one’s immune system involves an appropriate body-friendly diet, daily routine, various Rasayanas, medicines, mental techniques, Yogasanas, Pranayama, and so on. In fact, the very basis
of treatment of Maharishi Ayurveda revolves around focusing on the individual rather than on disease. This way the immune system, defence and self-repair mechanisms get strengthened and appropriately take care of the disease condition leading to cure.
Time has come to have a closer look at the ancient form of prevention. Under the present circumstances, due to absence any specific of medication to treat COVID 19 infected cases, a sense of helplessness and fear is prevailing in the atmosphere. This is leading toward the feeling of uncertainty also. But if nations learn how to build the immune systems of a wide spectrum of populations, viruses can be easily de-fanged.