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Ayurvedic Aspects of Pathila – Ten Wonder Leaves of Kerala


Publication Date:

Authors : ; ; ;

Page : 67-73

Keywords : Ayurveda; Karkidaka; Pathila; Varsha rithucharya; Wonder leaves;

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Background: Ayurveda is one of the classical traditional health care systems explained as the ‘Science of Life’. An approach to maintaining complete harmony with nature is the basic concept of Ayurveda. Kerala, the southernmost state of India is rich in its biodiversity. Consumption of Pathilakal (ten leaves) is a seasonal regimen practiced in Kerala during the month of Karkidaka (last month in Malayalam calendar which falls between mid-July to mid-August of English calendar). Aim: This study aims at collecting the data regarding these herbal leaves and their importance explained in Ayurveda. Materials and methods: Information regarding ten leaves was acquired by the interaction with elderly traditional knowledge holders randomly selected from Northern Kerala, Central Kerala, and Southern Kerala regions and among AYUSH practitioners. From the collected information, the most commonly used 20 plants used as Pathila were selected and a comparative study with the classical literature of Ayurveda has been attempted. Results: Properties of leaves of the plants identified as Pathilakal, is found to be explained in classical texts like Susrutha Samhita, Ashtanga Hridaya, Ashtanga Sangraha and in few Ayurveda Nighantus like Kaiyyadeva Nighantu indicating its nutritional, medicinal values, and edibility. These ten leaves which are easily available in the premises may become future hope in post COVID food scarcity. Conclusion: Various plants are being used as Pathila in different locations in concern with its availability. Among these groups of 10 leaves, some plants were mentioned in Ayurveda classics. On analysing these leaves, it can be concluded that these leaves are better suited as a food source for the monsoon season (Karkidaka). Hence it has to be promoted for consumption.

Last modified: 2020-12-29 14:18:07