The Gerson Institute of Ayurvedic Medicine

Scott Gerson, M.D., Ph.D. (Ayurveda) Medical Director, Jupiter Medical Center Dept. of Integrative Medicine Division of Education and Research






Lake Mary Clinic, Gerson Ayurvedic Spa, and Panchakarma Facility: at 635 Primera Blvd. Lake Mary, Florida 32746

Jupiter Medical Center at The Calcagnini Center for Mindfulness
1210 S. Old Dixie Highway, Jupiter, Florida 33458, Suite M-117.2




 Telephone: (561) 263-MIND (6463); option 2 (407) 549-2800

Basic Principles Of Ayurveda

Home Remedies: The Digestive System


The ancient Ayurvedic physicians understood that all life is interconnected and integrated into a complex fabric of mutual support and nourishment. The apparent multiplicity of life forms is in fact an illusion. In truth, only the One Self exists which takes different animate and inanimate forms recognized as the animal, plant, and mineral kingdoms. Each of these kingdoms is able to receive, transmute, and transmit energies in unique ways. Plants have evolved the unique and awe-inspiring feature of photosynthesis: the transformation of light energy from the sun into the chemical energy in the molecular bonds of carbohydrates. In addition plants contain many other chemical constituents which interact with humans biochemically. However we must always remember that the main glory of the plant kingdom, whether a food or an herb, is ultimately their ability to augment the flow of prana--the vital energy.

The following recommendations are intended for historical purposes only. Never treat yourself or others without the advice of a qualified physician.

To improve digestion - Chitraka (roots of Plumbago zeylanica), Pipplimoola (roots of Piper longum), Musta (Cyperus rotundus), Chitraka (root), Amlavetasa (Garcinia pedunculata), Ativisa (Aconitum heterophylum). These herbs can be taken either singly or as a compound in a total dose of 2-3 grams one hour before the main meal of the day with warm water.

Indigestion due to excess ghee or oil - warm fresh ginger tea with a pinch of black pepper (Marica).

Colicky abdominal pain (adult or child) - Chitraka (Plumbago zeylanica) plus Fennel Seed Powder 0.5 to 2 grams each with warm water and onion poultice over the abdomen.

Abdominal Distention - Plain herbal tea made from the decoction of Pippli (fruits of Piper longum), Sunthi (dry ginger), and Cumin Seed powder. Use approximately 0.5 grams each per cup and drink 1 cup every 6 hours.

To alleviate thirst - Consume water stored in an unglazed earthenware pot.

Anorexia - Pippali (fruits of Piper longum) - 0.5 - 1.0 grams, dry ginger - 0.5 grams, small pinch of salt, and fresh Lemon Juice -1 oz. to be taken with a glass of water.

Constipation- In mild constipation, use Amalaki (Emlica officinalis), Haritaki Terminalia chebula), and Bibhitaka (Terminalia bellerica) - one gram each in warm water. For moderate constipation, castor oil 1-2 teaspoons upon arising and before bed or Gandharva Haritaki 2 grams three times daily one hour before meals with warm water. For severe or long standing constipation, see a physician.

Gentle Purgative intestinal cleansing- Trivrit root powder (Operculina turpethum) in the dose of 2-4 grams with warm water one hour before sleep.

For intestinal worms- Vidanga (Embelia ribes) is well-established as an effective and safe remedy for pinworms and roundworms.The dose for adults is 3-4 grams twice daily with warm water 1-2 hours before food. It can also be given to the children of 5 years and and older in the dose of 1.0 grams twice daily with water. Vidanga can be safely used for extended periods of time (i.e three months) to accomplish a complete eradication of intestinal worms.