With the threat of COVID-19 pandemic continuing to loom over the world, the Ministry of Ayush has come out with a comprehensive document putting forth the concept of 'holistic health'.
The recommendations for the public to ensure 'holistic health and well-being' focus on preventive measures and care during COVID-19 and long COVID-19, the ministry said in a statement.
"COVID-19 is an evolving disease, characterised by the development of sequelae to the primary disease known as post-Covid syndrome and long COVID-19. It has been observed that patients recovering from SARS-CoV-2 suffer from persistent and often, debilitating symptoms extending several months past their initial diagnosis," a ministry official said.
The document puts forth the concept of holistic health which emphasises on self-care of individuals by addressing various dimensions of life and health. These recommendations have been formulated stressing the need for a healthy lifestyle with Ayush preventive measures and care in respect of COVID-19 and Long COVID-19, the statement said.
General preventive measures and methods for promoting systemic immunity, ways to promote local mucosal immunity along with other preventive courses such as fumigation (Dhupana) have been recommended by the ministry.
Pictographic presentation of Ayush practices and local/mucosal immune responses, relationship between good and weak digestive fire (agni), nutrition, immunity, and infection, and categorical administration of diet in respect of strength of appetite (agni) have also been incorporated in these recommendations for maximum understanding and outreach to general public, the statement said.
Recommendations related to mental health and measures to increase mental strength (Satvabala) are also part of the document which were not in the previous guidelines or advisories issued by the Ministry of Ayush.
Recipes of easily digestible food (laghu ahara) such as moong dal (green gram) khichdi and mudga yusha (moong dal soup) have been carefully chosen and included in the recommendations.
The document has illustrations of Yoga asanas that one can practice during COVID-19 along with its photographs for easy understanding, the statement said.
The recommendations are a supplement to the COVID-19 appropriate behaviour and precautionary measures and should not be taken as a substitute. Use of mask, hand sanitization, physical and social distancing, vaccination to break the chain, healthy nutritious diet, improving immunity, and all other general healthcare measures are advised as per the guidelines issued by health authorities from time to time.
"All the standing instructions issued by various health authorities (Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, World Health Organisation, and various state and local health authorities) are to be adhered to completely and Ayush guidelines may stand as an "add on" to the current line of management of Covid and post or long Covid," the document said.
The medicines recommended here are based on the Essential Drugs List, Standard Treatment Guidelines, Ayurvedic Pharmacopoeia of India, Ministry of Ayush, along with considerations from other recommendations issued by health authorities across India, it added.
The pandemic is an unprecedented health challenge affecting human existence across the globe. According to the World Health Organisation, SARS-CoV2 has globally infected over 271 million individuals till date and has been directly attributed to over 5.3 million deaths. In India, 34.7 million cases have emerged till date, while there have been 4.76 lakh deaths so far. As many as 1.34 billion vaccination doses have been administered in the country.