Bringing you the best from ancient Indian healing and the medicinal art of Ayurveda; Kashayam a soothing Herbal Tonic prepared from common herbs & spices found in our kitchens.
Amidst the Covid 19 outbreak, mankind across the globe is suffering. Enhancing the body’s natural defence system (immunity) plays a vital role in maintaining optimum health. We all know that prevention is better than cure. As there is no specific medication for the treatment of COVID-19 yet, it is advisable to take preventive measures to boost your immunity and that of your family.
The Herbal tonic Kashayam refers to a water-based decoction or water extract of a single or group of herbs and can be used for many ailments including indigestion, sore throats, coughs as well as the common cold. It is an ancient form of medicine that has been used over centuries. A dark coloured liquid that is often very bitter in taste.
Kashayam is a strong immune booster wellness drink that can remedy typical winter seasonal ailments. Kashayam is traditionally used in India and proven to be effective at boosting energy and immunity, especially during the monsoon/winter season.
Most ingredients used can be found in the home without having to go out and buy any specific ingredient. Other than the fact this Kashayam is an effective remedy it does not have any harmful side effects, that might be found in mainstream medicines.
Specially during these unprecedented times of the Coronavirus pandemic, it is wise to support your immune system. Kashayam is just one way to boost the immune. It may not taste that great, but with regular drinking, one can acquire the taste and get used to it. Kashayam is a natural and simple way to fight off colds, coughs, fevers and throat issues, giving you strong protection.
Kashayam can be made with different ingredients. However Ginger Kashayam is especially popular as a remedy as ginger has several constituents that are particularly important in boosting immunity. According to the AYUSH Ministry (Department of Ayurveda, Yoga and Naturopathy, Unani, Siddha and Homoeopathy (AYUSH), adding ginger to your daily diet can go a long way to keeping infections at bay.
Health Benefits of Ginger (Zingiber officinale)
Ginger is high in volatile oils including gingerol and camphene, sesquiterpenes including zingiberene as well as several vitamins (A,B,C) and minerals (iron, calcium, magnesium), making it rich in bioactive constituents full of medicinal properties. Gingerol has powerful anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties that improve health in many ways. Ginger can be chewed or drunk as Kashayam. Some of the health benefits include:
- Easing colds and flu
- Relieving several forms of nausea, including travel and morning sickness
- Easing chronic indigestion
- Strengthening your immune system
Different methods of Kashayam preparation
The following recipe makes approximately 25 cups of Kashayam. The powder can be stored in an airtight jar for up to six months to be used on a daily basis as and when needed.
INGREDIENTS - 1 stick Turmeric, 1 piece 2” long dry Ginger, 1 whole Nutmeg, 3 strings fresh curry leaves, 1 cup Coriander seeds, 1/2 cup Cumin seeds, 1/2 Cup Black peppercorns, 1/2 cup Fennel seeds, 2 whole Cardamom, 8-10 Cloves, 2 Tbsp Cardamom peel, 1 medium Bay leaf
Kashayam powder preparation:
- Crush Turmeric stick, dry ginger, nutmeg separately in a crusher and keep it aside
- Dry roast curry leaves along with the stick and keep it aside
- In a skillet, dry roast coriander seeds, black pepper, fennel seeds, cumin seeds, whole cardamom, cardamom peel, cloves, bay leaves along with crushed turmeric, ginger and nutmeg
- After 5 minutes add dry roasted curry leaves and continue to roast for another 5 minutes. Cool down completely
- When it has cooled down, transfer to mixer jar or blender and make a fine powder. Kashayam powder is now ready and can be stored in a jar for use on a daily basis. Kashayam powder can be stored in a container for more than 6 months.
Kashayam drink preparation: 1 glass Water, 3 Small pieces Jaggery (natural unrefined sugar cane), 1/4 tsp Turmeric powder, 1/4 tsp Kashayam powder (made earlier), 1/4 tsp Ginger paste, 1/2 cup Milk
(Serving 2 cups)
- Add 1 glass of water in a pan, place it on the stove
- When water starts boiling add jaggery, turmeric powder, Kashayam powder, fresh ginger paste and boil on a medium heat
- Boil until water is reduced to half its original volume
- Now, add milk and bring it to the boil
If you do not like milk, Kashayam can be prepared either with a dairy alternative or without adding milk.
Ginger Kashayam (this preparation is sufficient for 2 times a day)
INGREDIENTS 2 ginger pieces, 2 tbsp of coriander seeds, 3 tbsp of crushed palm jaggery or yellow jaggery (natural cane sugar), ½ tbsp of black pepper- you can reduce the quantity if you find this too spicy
- Crush all the ingredients in a pestle
- In a saucepan combine the crushed ingredients and 300ml of boiling water
- Boil till the quantity is reduced to nearly half
- You can add a pinch of salt if desired
- Serve hot.
As per the AYUSH Ministry, take half a glass of Kashayam on an empty stomach, and repeat 3-4 times a day until symptoms have been alleviated and you begin to return to full health, or take as part of your daily routine to ward of seasonal colds and flu.
Enjoy this Ayurvedic tradition. Wishing you a healthy winter season.
Sources: Www. https://www.ayush.gov.in/docs/123.pdf
(http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S2352618115000438) Authors: Pritam Sarkar, Lohith Kumar DH, Chanda Dhumal, Shubham Subrot Panigrahi, Ruplal Choudhary, Traditional and ayurvedic foods of Indian origin, Journal of Ethnic Foods, Volume 2, Issue 3, 2015, Pages 97-109, ISSN 2352-6181, https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jef.2015.08.003.