If systems approach is the way forward, what can the ayurvedic theory of tridosha teach us

‘In this article the author explains the systems approach underlying the ayurvedic concepts of dosha and guna. She leverages on the interconnectedness between these parameters to apply the network theory. This brings out the ingenuity underlying the management of complex human system by Ayurveda.

In this systematic approach, disease is viewed as a system perturbation leading to functional failure. Treatment is comprehensive, addressing the causative factors. The author points out the interesting prospects of dialogue between systems biology and Ayurveda.’

‘With a shift in focus from genes to cells, systems approach is not only revolutionizing cell biology, but is also providing impetus for clinical medicine to shift from a reductionistic to a holistic approach for efficient disease management. This inevitably brings into focus one of the longest unbroken healthcare systems in the world, namely ayurveda, the medical system indigenous to Indian subcontinent. A distinctive feature of ayurveda is its systems approach to health and disease. Through the theoretical framework of vata, pitta and kapha, ayurveda offers a new paradigm for understanding the human system as a networked functional entity wherein system properties are integral components. An open-minded dialogue between the cell-centric systems biology and organism-centric ayurveda can open new exciting vistas for research beneficial to both sciences, which could leave a major imprint on clinical practice.’

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About Author: Ramaji is in the Department of NMR, All India Institute of Medical Sciences, Ansari Nagar, New Delhi.

This article was first published in CURRENT SCIENCE, VOL. 112, NO. 6, 25 MARCH 2017. It is courtesy and copyright Current Science.

Do read this very nice article by Ramaji titled Ayurveda: a distinctive approach to health and disease