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Year : 2021  |  Volume : 9  |  Issue : 1  |  Page : 21-27

Ayurveda perspectives and research updates on factors influencing the immunity: A review

1 Central Council for Research in Ayurvedic Sciences, New Delhi, India
2 Central Ayurveda Research Institute, Central Council for Research in Ayurvedic Sciences, Bengaluru, Karnataka, India
3 Government Ayurveda Medical College, Mysuru, Karnataka, India

Correspondence Address:
Dr. Rinky Thakur
Central Council for Research in Ayurvedic Sciences, 61-65, opp. D’ Block, Janakpuri Institutional Area, Janakpuri, New Delhi.
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/JISM.JISM_3_21

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The basic concept of immunity is well explained under the heading Vyadhi-kshamatva in classical texts of Ayurveda. A clear and comprehensive understanding of the relationship between immunity and lifestyle such as daily activities, seasonal regimens, diet, emotional factors, and psychological factors is documented in ancient literature. According to Ayurveda, the most important contributing factors for the normal immune functioning of the body include Agni (digestive factors), Ahara (food), Nidra (sleep), Vyayama (physical activity/exercise), Satva (mental stability), and Rasayana (rejuvenators). In the present work, these factors influencing immunity were compiled from classical texts of Ayurveda and presented systematically with the help of published scientific literature. It is observed that good immunity in an individual will be due to effect of active and healthy functioning of the digestive system. It depends mainly on the type of food consumed. Higher diet quality is associated with the positive health of the body. Quality diet, required quantity and balanced food, is the base for the proper digestion and in turn for the development of a strong immune system. Exercises improve metabolic health which in turn provides a good immune system. Even sleep affects the immune system. Good sleep provides strong immune responses; it results in the formation of antibodies which along with white blood cells cellular immune system of body and fight against the disease. A significant relationship is also reported between mental resilience and perceived immune functioning and health. Psychological well-being also can increase living comfort. Rasayana provides a defense mechanism against diseases (Vyadhi) in the body. Proper understanding and application of these concepts in clinical practice can be a preventive strategy for a number of diseases.

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