Medicinal Cloth is an ancient technique of dyeing textiles in medicinal herbs as a means of practising ayurvedic medicine. Ayurveda originated in Kerala some 5000 years ago and has been used to treat various illnesses. Ayur is Sanskrit and roughly translates to “health,” while veda means “wisdom” or "knowledge" and vastra means “cloth” or “clothing.” Medicinal Cloth thus literally means “health cloth.”
Handloom Weavers Development Society revived this ancient tradition and has manufactured Medicinal Cloth since 1992. All Medicinal Cloth textiles are a 100% organic, handloomed, completely free of synthetic chemicals and toxic irritants, and biodegradable. Presently, we are the sole manufacturer of Medicinal Cloth.
Medicinal Cloth exposes medicinal herbs to the body through the skin, the body’s largest organ. In contact with clothing, bed sheets, or floor mats dipped in medicinal dyes, the skin absorbs the medicinal qualities of the herbs. Depending on which herbs are used in the dyes, Medicinal Cloth may treat a broad range of medical conditions including skin ailments, diabetes, arthritis, and high blood pressure. Each dye may contain up to 50 different herbs. Se below for a list of common useages.
|skin infections||weight loss|
|diabetes||immune system booster|
|high blood pressure||calming|
|asthma||blood purification and cooling|
|general body aches|
A clinical trial initiated by the Ministry of Health at the Government Ayurveda College in Thiruvananthapuram, Kerala, suggest that Medicinal Cloth does indeed work. For the study, patients suffering from rheumatism, allergies, hypertension, diabetes, psoriasis and other skin ailments were constantly exposed to ayurvedic herbs for 30 days through Medicinal Cloth clothing, bed linens, and mattresses. Walls, floors, and ceilings in the subjects’ room were further lined with Medicinal Cloth coir mats. According to Dr. Vishwanathan, the former Dean of the Drug Research Department at Ayurveda College, the response was “remarkably good,” especially in the cases of arthritis and skin ailments where the patients showed a "marked improvement." Convinced by these results, the Government of Kerala has granted the college 250,000 dollars for further development of Medicinal Cloth.
The Hindu, 24.08.2006
Time Magazine, 12.02.2006
The Hindu, 08.09.2004