RJPS Vol No: 13 Issue No: 4 eISSN: pISSN:2249-2208
The moment we click on a search engine of internet about Indian cow and related health products, instantaneously we will get whopping figure of more than 3 crore results. However, this need not be a surprise as cow has been an integral part of our Indian way of life since times immemorial. The sages, kings and wealthy all boasted of their wealth in terms of cows too! The cow was found in the hermitage of saints, sages, monks, citizens, kings and all strata of population. The cow products had fed human beings right from infants to aged and youth including the royal kings, princes etc. The cows were donated liberally on auspicious occasions, to temples, gurukuls and poor and needy virtuous people, as an act of divine service with the belief that it can fetch heavens to them. There were times when cow products were not even sold and it was considered as a sin to sell milk, curd etc. Hence, they referred cow as mother of all since all the products are priceless and help in sustaining the life. Be it the waste products (metabolic products) such as urine, dung or the nectarine milk, curd, buttermilk, butter, ghee etc. Further, conversion of these products that give the byproducts are also equally valuable and priceless. However, the similar products of other animals do not enjoy this reputation which conveys, it was not a blind belief of our enlightened sages who had super brains, who could predict the stellar constellations from their hermitages that have stood true even today. Be it prediction of eclipses or positions of other stars, planets or composing/reciting vedic scriptures. Cowpathy, even though appears a buzz word of present day, it is an ancient system that treats a variety of diseases using cow products. The formulations with cow urine, milk, ghee or altering the diet with these products is an age old practice in this country. Since, huge amount of information is available, I am only ruminating them in the form of an abstract.
One of the review articles published in Acta Scientific Pharmaceutical Sciences 2019 mentions cow urine as panacea for all diseases viz., psoriasis, diabetes, hypertension, eczema, heart attack, acidity, ulcer, constipation, menstrual problem, piles, cancer, arthritis, thyroid, prostate, burns, and many more. It is claimed to possess antibacterial, anthelmintic, antifungal, larvicidal properties. Cow urine also promotes phagocytic activity as defense against bacterial infections, the synthesis of interleukine 1 and 2, IgA, IgG, IgM,Tlymphocytes thus promotes immunity.
The cow urine contains most of the needed micro elements for human beings, thus using it helps to balance the needed trace minerals and other agents to make healthy living and cure incurable diseases. Biochemical analysis of urine shows presence of sodium, sulfur, nitrogen, minerals, vitamins A, B, C, D, E, manganese, silicon, iron, chlorine, enzymes, magnesium, succinic, citric, phosphate, calcium salt, carbolic acid, creatinine, lactose, hormones etc. The urine has its diverse use to treat various diseases as well as to maintain normal life. Even in agricultural field, it is used as bio-enhancer to fix nitrogen level of soil, as pesticide and as fertilizer.
The cow dung is used to smear the floor of houses and front yards that is considered as a sign of purity and cleanliness as well divine. Its ashes are used as tooth powder, cleaning utensils, it is used as excellent biofertilizer besides urine, as fumigating agent to avoid mosquitoes, insects and other harmful organisms and as a fuel to cook food as well for funeral pyre.
Curd of cow milk is reported to correct inflammatory disorders, phlegm related disorders, and bile related disorders. The buttermilk produces antifungal metabolites Viz., cyclic dipeptides, phenyl lactic acid as well as proteinaceous compounds and 3-hydroxylated fatty acid.
Cow butter and ghee have been used to improve skin conditioning, as memory enhancer and said to increase stamina, and promotes longevity. To convey its regular use in daily life as most essential, it is said that a meal without a dash of ghee is considered inauspicious! Many of Ayurvedic medicines are given with either ghee or butter.
Of course there is no need to explain about usage of Indian cow milk. It is easily digestible for infants as well aged. People who fast are permitted to use cow milk or some vouch to live only with cow milk till their penance or divine vouch is completed. Many Ayurvedic medicines are recommended with cow milk and even the patients and bedridden are recommended cow milk. The books go to further deeper extent of explaining beneficial effects of cow milk based on the color of cows Viz., black cow, white cow, brown cow etc. Even the milk and ghee of cows that have given birth to only one calf is considered as virtuous referred as ‘aja’.
Other specific uses of cow products are done in the form of their formulations as panchagavya (equal proportions of cow urine, dung, milk, curd and ghee) for its hepatoprotective activity, antiepileptic activity, nootropic activity, in stress etc. Indian cow milk is referred as Amruta (nectar) and its use with turmeric has attracted the world wide attention (milk latte) especially in the covid-19 context. It is claimed to have beneficial effects in heart diseases, fevers, healing of fractures, sciatica and other pains etc. Voluminous literature is available for preparing Ayurvedic medicines with cow products, hence, covering them is out of scope of present editorial.
There are ayurvedic practitioners (Govaidyas) who believe in treating all the diseases with cow products alone. Hence, Indian cows enjoy the holy status as well its body can be called as a place of drug store and these drugs a panacea on planet earth. It is bestowed with universal motherhood especially for Indians and Hindus who even subconsciously salute at the very site of Indian cow whenever and wherever they come across. It is a token of reverence and thanks giving as we thank a person who gives a pen to sign a cheque when we forgot to carry or thank profusely if someone offers a temporary seat in a crowded bus/ train. Just to covey this message, our Gods too take birth as cowherds.
Let the cow species flourish and feed humanity with its let down products without fear of getting slaughetered.
I take this opportunity to thank the excellent support, encouragement and guidance of Hon’ble Vice chancellor Dr.S.Sacchidanad, Dr.B.J.Mahendra, Director Prasaranga, and other officials of RGUHS.
I also wholeheartedly thank valuable readers, contributors, reviewers, and editorial board members for their constant efforts, feedbacks to make each issue of RJPS a precious possession.