Ayurveda is a traditional and the most influential form of medicine native to India originating from its Vedic traditions. It is popularly practiced in many parts of South Asia. It involves treating people with medicinal plants and herbs with bizarre qualities to cure their ailments. Ayurvastra is a fabric that is dyed as prescribed in the Ayurvedic texts, using various natural herbs like neem, tulsi, sida, turmeric, and sandalwood. These fabrics are permeated with therapeutic herbs, and aromatic oils. They posses medicinal properties, and are good for skin problems, headache, asthma, and many other ailments.
Ayur means life and Vastra means dress. Fabrics made adopting this process ensure healthy and longer life. Organic cotton yarn, silk, and jute fibres are used in the making of this cloth by dying them with herbal dyes prepared from medicinal herbs under a specific temperature and environment. Regular yarns used for making cloth are infused with extracts of medicinal plants and herbs. After cleaning, the raw yarn is insulated with a natural gum, and is immersed in medicinal dyes made from indigo, pomegranate, turmeric or other plants. When this fabric is worn in the body, it increases immunity, and the body reaches a level of mental and physical equilibrium.
Roots, seeds, flowers, leaves and barks of trees of many rare herbs and plants are used to make the dyes. Wild basil is used in BP clothes, while extracts of tea leaves or khus is used in sun-screen clothes. Mimosa pudica (touch-me-not) is used for treating diabetes, and cumin seeds, champa flower, and hibiscus are combined in herbal dyes. Curry leaves, and apocynceae are used for arthritis and herbs such as neem, sandalwood, and turmeric are used for skin disorders. Only fire wood is used for the dyeing purposes. Different firewood is used for different herbs, with a combination of spring water, natural or ground water. Temperature of the dyes, blend of herbs, number of times the cloth is soaked in dyes, and the duration of dyeing differ according to the treatment purpose.
The color of the fabrics is obtained only by the medicinal dyeing and no other artificial or chemical colorants are used. This limits the color choice of the buyer, but still its health benefits outshine the color preferences. Nature has gifted different varieties of herbs in many beautiful shades which can be seen in the dyed fabric. The time span the color remains on the fabric indicates the presence of medicinal properties on the fabric.
Skin is the largest organ of the human body. As the skin prevents outside substances from entering into the body, the same way, during some circumstances, it also allows environmental toxins and chemicals to penetrate the body. By using this fabric, the body loses its toxins and its metabolism is improved. Wearing this fabric during sleep, meditation, or while at rest enables the user to get maximum benefits.