Alchemy and Metallic Medicines in Ayurveda

author: Vaidya Bhagwan Dash
edition: 2003, Concept Publishing Company
pages: 236
ISBN-10: 8170220777
ISBN-13: 9788170220770
Topic: Rasashastra

Introduction (2): Superiority of Mineral Drugs

In addition to curing obstinate and otherwise incurable conditions, mineral drugs were also used for the treatment of common diseases because of advantages which summarised in the verse given below:

“Mineral remedies are therapeutically effective even when adminstered only in a small dose (unlike vegetable products which are generally required to be administered in a much large dose). These mineral products are not unpalatable (unlike some of the vegetable remedies which are sometimes very unpalatable because of bitter, astringent and pungent tastes ). Mineral products produce their therapeutic effects instantaneously (unlike vegetable products which take longer time because they have pass through the process of digestion and metabolism before they become the therapeutically active)”.

In view of the above, treatment with metallic and mineral preparations was considered to be superior in comparison to treatment with vegetable drugs and surgical therapies. It is said :

“Therapies are of three categories, viz., asuri (demoniac) which includes surgical therapies, (2) manusi (human)which is performed by the use of decoctions, etc. of vegetable drugs, and (3) daivi (divine) which is performed by the administration of metallic and mineral preparations. The succeeding one are superior to be preceding categories of therapies.”

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