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Ayurvedic text and coronavirus. Source: inkoly / Fæ.

Did 5,000 Year-Old Ayurvedic Text Predict Coronavirus?

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An Indian doctor claims an ancient Indian Ayurvedic text describes a virus similar to the current coronavirus, but are the newly presented correlations just headline grabbing?

Smita Naram is an Indian doctor who founded Ayushakti Ayurvedic therapy and the subsequent empire of hospitals that claim to have treated “more than 1 million people from 108 countries” suffering from a range of ailments including asthma, arthritis, diabetes, stress, obesity, and infertility to name but a few. All this with “detoxing panchakarma therapies” (we’ll come back to that) and customized diet plans supplemented with herbal medicines. And now the scientist claims a similar contagion to coronavirus was detailed in 5,000 year-old ancient scriptures - the 'Charak Samhita.

Did The Ayurvedic Text Really Talk About Coronavirus?

A specific chapter of this Ayurvedic scripture called “Krimi” details how to stop an ancient pathogen called “Maha Sukshnma” from spreading among humans. It was recorded as being so small that it couldn’t be seen by the naked eye, meaning the viral enemy was so minuscule that physicians required “special instruments” to see it, and this was “5,000 years ago!” said Naram. “It was rather unbelievable” she said.

I am glad Dr. Naram said it, because “unbelievable” was the very word I was thinking myself, knowing that hundreds of ancient texts from around the world talk of epidemics, viruses, and plagues. The claim got me asking myself why is this text any different from the vagaries of all the others?

This is when Dr. Naram would get excited and point out that the Charaka Samhita also said this pathogen would affect the respiratory system of patients. Furthermore, the disease’s “classic symptoms” were noted as being severe congestion, breathlessness, and a cough. According the spiritual healer/doctor the ancient scripture is clear that this infection could result in the sufferer’s death, India Today reports.

There is no arguing that the correlations between the disease described in the Ayurvedic scripture and the current coronavirus are attention pulling, and not altogether uninteresting, but looking at the ancient description another way, didn’t it simply describe the common cold, which in ancient times would have brought about these disastrous symptoms and effects?

The Scientists “Ayurveda-Coronavirus” Links Deepen

Deepening the associative layers, and intrigue, between the ancient Ayurvedic scripture and the modern virus, as per the scripture: the number one way to prevent spread of the disease was to “isolate” patients, who should not be fed with foods to prevent the disease-causing pathogen becoming stronger and that a preventative measure is “immunity enhancement”.

Doctors working for Dr. Naram have detailed “three ways by which this infection can be prevented,” and the company website claims, “many scientific reports” have proven that ingredients like pomegranate peel, kalmegh, tulsi, shunti, and dalchini can “enhance the immune power, kill all types of viral infections and prevent the viral attacks remarkably well”.

Various spices and herbs for Ayurveda treatments. (chamillew / Adobe Stock)

Various spices and herbs for Ayurveda treatments. (chamillew / Adobe Stock)

As the science dilutes and the magic thickens, let’s not shy away from questioning these claims, for it is now the age of reason and never more than now should scientists, the new high priests of society, have to stand beside their public claims, before but one of us rejects mainstream advice for pomegranate peels.

Chinese Traditional Medicine And Indian Magic verses Science

We, the average western reader, must attempt to separate fact from fantasy, similarly to when we judge the validity of a Chinese medical supplement, whereby western scientists have proven ginger does indeed have anti-septic properties and will almost always relieve an upset tummy, these same scientists also know that Rhino horn is no replacement for 50mgs of Viagra.

The problem we have here is, returning to detoxing panchakarma therapies”, all the proposed alternative therapies revolve around “detoxing” which an article in The Guardian published as far back as 2014 presented the work of scientists who had figured out that there is “no scientific way to detoxify your own system”. 95% of what we thought we knew about “toxins” was no more than medical mythology designed to sell “detox pills” and regimens, to folk who find complexity in going for a walk.

Detoxification is a form of alternative medicine. (WallpaperFlare / Public Domain)

Detoxification is a form of alternative medicine. (WallpaperFlare / Public Domain)

A Seed of Sense Buried In Nonsense?

On the other hand, strengthening ones immune system, as the Indian doctors say, is scientifically (western orthodox) proven to help folk inflicted with coronavirus, but perhaps rather than wasting valuable time mixing up fruit peel drinks, everyone should be told the importance of losing weight, eating less, and trying to get as much exercise as possible. Why? Because what is rising from the stats is that the number one condition putting people at greater risk of developing complications is not heart disease or smoking, and neither is it genetic or a blood type, but obesity.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recently announced that “Obesity-related conditions seem to worsen the effect of COVID-19”, meaning a BMI over 25. Furthermore, obese people who become ill and require intensive care “present challenges in patient management as it is more difficult to intubate patients with obesity”.

Medical complications of obesity could make the coronavirus worse in some individuals. (Smallman12q / Public Domain)

Medical complications of obesity could make the coronavirus worse in some individuals. (Smallman12q / Public Domain)

Furthermore, what else the ancient text did not mention is that coronavirus would kill more than 154,000 people worldwide with the total number of COVID-19 patients having risen to over 2.2 million, nor did it mention suffering, prolonged anxiety, and the entire reshaping of the global economy.  

Top image: Ayurvedic text and coronavirus. Source: inkoly / .

By Ashley Cowie



"everyone should be told the importance of losing weight, eating less..." - mmm, perhaps eating pomegranite peels might help?

As for rhino horns, what is that to do with aurveda?

Someone here has a fear of ancient knowledge being better than toxification by modern medicine.

Brent Daglish's picture

Seriously dude. Get off the juice. 

Thoth101's picture

Very good article. But just stating the obvious thing on 154,000 people dying out of 7 billion or so people is a joke with the way the world and governments have reacted. One could only imagine if we were hit with a virus that ate the skin off of people. Wait that is the Ebola and the world didn’t react as bad over that. This was an agenda driven virus to ruin the economy and lead to more control over the 99 percent. While the 1 percent  tries to gain even more power over the people. It’s a 9-1-1 of viruses.

ashley cowie's picture


Ashley is a Scottish historian, author, and documentary filmmaker presenting original perspectives on historical problems in accessible and exciting ways.

He was raised in Wick, a small fishing village in the county of Caithness on the north east coast of... Read More

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