Asthma (Tamaka Shwasa)

मेघाम्बुशीतप्राग्वातैः श्लेष्मलैश्च विवर्द्धते।
सयाप्यस्तमकः, साध्यो नवो वा बलिनो भवेत्॥

Role of Ayurveda in the Management of Asthma

Asthma or Bronchial Asthma is a chronic inflammatory condition that affects the airflow passage to the lungs. The hyperactivity of the mucus membrane lining the air passage resulted due to external and internal allergens leads to this condition. Asthma is correlated to Tamaka Shwasa in Ayurveda. Dr. Gupta’s IAFA is a successful name in the management of Asthma through Ayurveda.

Causes of Asthma

In general, there are two categories of causes for Asthma namely induced factors and triggering factors.

Genetic factors and obesity are considered as the major induced factors of Asthma. The triggering factors or precipitating factors that may affect Asthma patients are:-

  • Inhaling of various Allergens
  • Wide range of upper respiratory tract infections
  • Medications or drugs especially Aspirin and certain NSAIDs
  • Food substances and other food additives
  • Environmental factors like cold weather
  • Smell of certain chemicals and
  • Stress

Ayurvedic Reference of Asthma

According to Ayurveda, the Causes of Asthma are

  • Chronic cough
  • Indigestion
  • Vomiting
  • Poisoning
  • Fever
  • Dust
  • Smoke
  • Cold food and bevarages
  • Breeze
  • Injury to vital organs

‘Ashtanga Hrudaya’ an ancient Ayurvedic treatise, explains about the pathology of Asthma in the chapter Svasa-Hidma Nidana. Ayurveda says that the Vata, Pitta and Kapha are the three doshas or humors which maintain all the activities within a human being. In the case of Asthma and other similar breathing disorders, Vata dosha is being obstructed by Kapha dosha and obstructs the channels of respiration, water and food, leads to the condition of difficulty in breathing. The premonitory symptoms observed in Asthma are heart and flanks region pain and discomfort in the chest region.

Dr. Sahil Gupta Allergy Specialist

Institute of Applied Food Allergy® is using unique Ayurvedic treatment measures which have gained through Dr. Gupta’s hereditary knowledge sharing and self-experience for treating Asthma.


– Dr. Sahil Gupta (B.A.M.S., M.H.A.)

Ayurvedic Allergy Specialist
CEO & Founder of IAFA®

Symptoms of Asthma

A person suffering from Asthma may show the symptoms of

  • Recurrent events of wheezing
  • Shortness in breathing or dyspnea
  • Discomfort or heaviness over chest region
  • Cough
  • Sleeplessness
  • Stress and anxiety
  • Sleep apnea and
  • Sinusitis

Ayurvedic Classics Explaining Asthma as Tamaka shwasa has recorded the symptoms as,

  • Dyspnea along with pain in head and neck
  • Cough associated with cracking sound
  • Delusion
  • Loss of taste
  • Running nose
  • Forceful bouts of respiration rarely associated with loss of consciousness
  • Discomfort during lying position and comfort during sitting position
  • Sweating over forehead and
  • Rarely tremor

Diet and Regimen for Asthma

Moderate breathing exercises can be performed by Asthma patients. Avoiding excessive exercise, exposure to smoke and dust helps in controlling Asthma. Clothing must be capable of protecting ears, throat, and chest region while traveling.

Asthma Patients should avoid, (Don’ts)

  • Cold and heavy food such as black gram, ice creams etc.
  • Avoid usage of excessive sweet, sour and salty food substances
  • Avoid the usage of fermented milk products
  • Reduce the usage of non-vegetarian food. Deeply fried or stored or packed or processed non-vegetarian materials must be avoided completely.

Asthma Patients can include (Do's),

  • Red rice
  • Wheat
  • Green gram
  • Barley
  • Goat milk can be used by Asthma patients
  • Always use warm and cooked food
  • Moderate usage of bitter, astringent and spicy taste helps in controlling Asthma
  • Spices like Garlic, Black pepper, Turmeric, Cardamom, Cuminand Ginger can be used in daily food by an Asthmatic person.

Yoga in Asthma

  • Pranayama
  • Ustrasana
  • Dhanurasana and
  • Baddha konasana can be practiced for getting relief from Asthma


Ayurvedic Treatment for Asthma

According to Ayurveda Asthma is caused due to the misbalance of Vata and Kapha dosha. Internal medications as well as external medications are used in the treatment of Asthma. The internal medications include single medicine therapy or therapy using combination of drugs.

Important plants used in the treatment of Asthma

  • Vasa  (Adathoda vasica)
  • Shunti  (Zingiber officinale)
  • Kantakari  (Solanum Xanthocarpum)

Internal medications used in the treatment of Asthma

  • Dasamoola katuthrayam kashayam
  • Elakanadi kashayam
  • Agasthya Rasayanam
  • Vasavaleham
  • Talisapatradi churnam
  • Vyoshadi vatakam etc.

Ayurveda, as mentioned earlier uses the combination of external measures also in the treatment of Asthma such as

  • Snehana (Oil application)
  • Swedana (Sweating treatment)
  • Panchakarma – Vamana (Emesis or vomiting therapy) and Virechana (Purgation therapy) are the two therapies used in the treatment of Asthma.


  1. Shloka No. 6-10, Svasahidma Nidanam, AshtangHrudaya by Acharaya Vagbhata, Nidanasthanam.
  2. Vidhyadhar Shukla, Ravi Dutt Tripathi, Charak Samhita, Vol. 2, Chikitsasthana Varanasi: Chaukhambha Sanskrit Pratishthan; 2010. p. 424.
  3. Shukla V, Editor (2nd ed.). Charak Samhita of Charak Chikitsasthana 17/63; Chaukhambha Surbharati Prakashan Varanasi 2008. p. 535. 
  4. Sahil Gupta, Ayurvedic Aspects of Allergies and Fungal Infections, Edition 2021, Allergic Bronchitis Chapter No. 13, Page No. 79-86.

Article Written By: Dr. Sahil Gupta (B.A.M.S., M.H.A.)

Frequently Asked Questions

Question: What is Asthma?

Answer: Asthma or Bronchial Asthma is a chronic condition associated with inflammatory changes which affect the air passage to the lungs. The hyperactive nature of the mucus membrane is responsible for this condition.

Question: What are the causes of Asthma?

Answer: Genetic factors and obesity are considered as the major induced causes of Asthma. Along with the above-mentioned causes the precipitating causes like inhaling of allergens, a wide range of upper respiratory tract infections, medications or drugs especially Aspirin and certain NSAIDs, food substances and other food additives, environmental factors like cold weather, the smell of certain chemicals, and stress may also lead to the condition of Asthma.

Question: Is there any treatment for Asthma in Ayurveda?

Answer: Yes, Ayurveda has internal as well external treatment measures for treating Asthma. Along with treatment Ayurveda also suggests diet and regimen to be followed by an Asthmatic person to get relief.

Question: What are the best Yoga methods for Asthma?

Answer: Pranayama, Ustrasana, Dhanurasana and Baddhakonasana are the best Yoga methods for Asthma.

Question: Is Ayurvedic treatment effective in asthma?

Answer: Yes. Ayurvedic treatment of Asthma is well-explained in Charak Samhita. Ayurveda treats asthma by administering polyherbal combinations along with including pranayama and dietary changes in lifestyle.

Question: Which type of food should be avoided by asthma patient?

Answer: Heavy and kapha producing foods like banana, sour curd, milk, non-vegetarian should be avoided.

Question: What is the cause of Asthma according to Ayurveda?

Answer: Srotas avrodha in pranvaha srotas (blockage of channels of the respiratory system) due to increase in Kapha dosha leads to obstruction in Vata dosha. As a result, the smooth passage of air gets disturbed which causes difficulty in breathing.

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