Can Ayurveda replace the pharmaceutical industry?

Ayurvedic alternatives for ADD

A hotly controversial debate is raging between parents, professional educators, psychologists and neurologists about what actually is ADD or ADHD (attention deficit / hyperactivity disorder). Some go so far as to claim that ADD was invented by the pharmaceutical industry. With annual sales of methylphenidate (the most widely used drug) of over 4.8 billion US dollars (sales in the USA in 2008), it is understandable that such theories arise.

Why are children crammed full of drugs that officially fall under the Narcotics Act in Germany and that with a contradicting and insufficiently objective possibility of diagnosis? In addition, no factors are known to date that clearly demonstrate which conditions play a primary role in the development of attention deficit disorder.

Research into the causes is divided: Hereditary factors are listed, smoking (active and passive), alcohol, poor nutrition and the mother's lifestyle during pregnancy have now been proven. Deprivation in unfavorable psychosocial conditions in the family or controlling and hardening parenting behavior are further factors.

More and more parents are looking for alternatives to treatment for the alleged ADHD diagnosis and thus come to Ayurveda. Unfortunately, teachers sometimes insist that a child be sedated with Ritalin because they are simply overwhelmed with the fidgety student. "Then please change schools or classes." That was the solution for around a third of the children. In the case of cognitive deficits, Rasayana measures are recommended for (a) the attention disorder (remedy for the central nervous system) and (b) the hyperactivity (calming, if not sedating agents).


Ayurvedic herbal remedies are well tolerated and highly effective.

In my practice, a special, highly effective agent is used that was developed in India and about which studies are available. The main ingredient is Bacopa Monnieri and my experiences with it are really very good. Traditionally, a ghee preparation such as Brahmi Ghrita is administered or the plant parts are taken in a cup of hot spiced milk. In any case, the active ingredients of the administered plants must be bound to fat molecules so that the cerebral blood barrier can be crossed and the active ingredients reach the central nervous system. The hyperactivity can also be effectively compensated for with physical therapies such as full body oil massages with appropriate Ayurvedic oils. Surrendering Ayurvedic remedies without further accompanying measures will not produce the desired results. Adjustments in diet and lifestyle are also necessary.


The diet of ADD children and adolescents in general must contain the highest possible sattva content, i.e. freshly prepared food from fresh, regional foods, i.e. grains, pulses, vegetables, dairy products and high-quality oils, but also fruits, nuts, berries, green vegetables, Honey etc.


A child must have enough space to experiment with their skills. This is severely limited by school enrollment and often also at home. There are no rituals that serve as milestones in the child's development. The “one must” increasingly restricts freedom of movement and so it loses the relationship to its own sensuality. Ayurvedic full body oil massages soothe, reopen the senses and, if performed together with one or both parents, enable physical and emotional bonding.

Sports activities that are adapted to the child's constitution and abilities, but do not overwhelm the structures, are another instrument for a child to live out their physicality with joy. After all, a child must be able to recognize a meaning in life. It wants to live its uniqueness and not be forced into a structure that is considered normal. It needs nourishment for the soul.

Booklet 30 - Cures at the origin of Ayurveda

Purify the body with an Ayurveda cure - traditional Panchakarma cures in the heart of India, at the origin of Ayurveda. Dealing with your own body in a foreign culture.