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J Ethnopharmacol. 2005 Jun 3;99(2):165-78. Epub 2005 Apr 26.

Antioxidant approach to disease management and the role of 'Rasayana' herbs of Ayurveda.

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  • 1Pharmacognosy and Ethnopharmacology Division, National Botanical Research Institute, Lucknow 226001, India.

Abstract

The disease preventive and health promotive approach of 'Ayurveda', which takes into consideration the whole body, mind and spirit while dealing with the maintenance of health, promotion of health and treating ailments is holistic and finds increasing acceptability in many regions of the world. Ancient Ayurvedic physicians had developed certain dietary and therapeutic measures to arrest/delay ageing and rejuvenating whole functional dynamics of the body system. This revitalization and rejuvenation is known as the 'Rasayan chikitsa' (rejuvenation therapy). Traditionally, Rasayana drugs are used against a plethora of seemingly diverse disorders with no pathophysiological connections according to modern medicine. Though, this group of plants generally possesses strong antioxidant activity, only a few have been investigated in detail. Over about 100 disorders like rheumatoid arthritis, hemorrhagic shock, CVS disorders, cystic fibrosis, metabolic disorders, neurodegenerative diseases, gastrointestinal ulcerogenesis and AIDS have been reported as reactive oxygen species mediated. In this review, the role of free radicals in these diseases has been briefly reviewed. 'Rasayana' plants with potent antioxidant activity have been reviewed for their traditional uses, and mechanism of antioxidant action. Fifteen such plants have been dealt with in detail and some more plants with less work have also been reviewed briefly.

PMID:
15894123
DOI:
10.1016/j.jep.2005.02.035
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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