In the lockdown period, alcohol lovers seem to be falling back on ‘arishtams’ and ‘asavams’ as a substitute. The trend seems to be on the rise and doctors have warned against its health impacts. According to sources, Ayurveda pharmacy stores across the State have of late found a surge in demand for the medicinal arishtams and asavams, which have alcohol content up to 10%.
Staff in some Ayurveda pharmacy stores in Kozhikode claimed that the sale of such medicines had gone up by around 30% after the enforcement of the lockdown. So much so that a certain pharmacy firm put up an advertisement in a Malayalam newspaper last Saturday pointing out that the ‘arishtams’ and ‘asavams’ they manufacture are strictly for medical purpose and “should not be used with other intentions.” Some others are now insisting on a medical prescription.
Manoj Kaloor, functionary of the Ayurveda Medical Association of India (AMAI), said that ‘arishtams’ and ‘asavams’ had “self-generated alcohol”. “We prescribe around 25 ml of these medicines as one dose, depending on the condition of the patient and the nature of the disease. However, if one person consumes a bottle of the medicine at once, he may get a high. But, doing it on a long-term basis may affect body parts,” he pointed out.