Spas- threat to Ayurveda

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Mushrooming of the so called Ayurvedic massage parlors and spas sans qualified Ayurvedic therapists is posing a threat to the health of customers as well as the credibility of the Indian stream of medicine, say experts.

During the past few years, a lot of centers have sprung up offering ayurvedic massages and therapies as part of wellness treatments and they often “dilute” the treatment methods for making a quick buck, they say.

“Even though this shows the growing popularity of Ayurveda, the attempt to dilute the system for purely commercial interests will do great harm to this stream of medicine,” said Dr U Indulal, Deputy Director, Arya Vaidya Pharmacy, Coimbatore.

Echoing his view, Dr C Madhusoodanan, Chief of the Ayurveda wing at Kumaran Hospital, Chennai, said many of the centres do not even have doctors, proper facilities, medicinal oils or qualified therapists.

“This would even paint a wrong picture about this ancient system of medicine not only among the people of the country but also the foreigners who show interest in Ayurveda.”

Unlike other streams of treatment like Allopathy and Homeopathy, Ayurveda has treatments that help rejuvenation and wellness. This trait makes it vulnerable to be excessively commercialised, he said.

“To do an oil massage as per the Ayurvedic texts, we need seven therapists and a systematic method has to be adopted as per the advice of the doctor. The choice of oil, massage, preparations etc are prescribed after evaluating the condition of the patient.” 

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