How can we build our immunity naturally with herbs? Kabasura Kudineer is a traditional Siddha formulation used to fortify immunity and manage the symptoms of common respiratory ailments such as cold, dry and productive cough and flu. Like Ayurveda, Siddha is a respected, contemporary form of medicine in India with ancient origins, dating back to roughly 10,000 BC.
What’s new about this time-tested formulation?
During the pandemic, multiple studies on traditional (Ayush) herbal formulations have been undertaken in India and internationally including many on Kabasura Kudineer. Siddha formulations have been used in the Indian state of Tamil Nadu (TN) on a standalone basis and in an integrative manner with allopathic medicine. The state has a high recovery rate of 97%. According to the Central Council for Research in Siddha (CCRS), Kabasura Kudineer has been distributed as a prophylactic in TN and found to be effective in improving immunity; Ministry of Ayush that governs traditional forms of medicine in India including Siddha and Ayurveda has recommended its nation-wide distribution.
An in vitro research study at Frankfurt Biotechnology Innovation Center, Germany, on Kabasura Kudineer found that it strongly (84%) inhibited the mechanism by which the SARS-COV-2 virus enters human cells.
Sri Sri Tattva has started manufacturing Kabasura Kudineer and donated 10,000 doses for its distribution and study. Sri Sri Tattva UK has just made the formulation available in UK in food supplement tablets.
Kabasura Kudineer literally means a herbal formulation (Kudineer is a decoction) for balancing the accumulation of Kapha (Kaba) Dosha (energy principal of earth and water) which typically impacts the respiratory tract. It has anti-inflammatory, analgesic, anti-viral, anti-bacterial, anti-fungal, decongestion, antioxidant, hepato-protective, anti-pyretic, anti-asthmatic and immunomodulatory properties.
Kabasura Kudineer is comprised of 15 herbal ingredients (names vary based on languages used and this document contains botanical names),
Ginger, Mustard, Cloves, Haritaki, Ajwain, Musta, Kokilaksha, Kusa, Kalamegha, Guduchi or Amruth, Bharangi, Akarakarabha, Pippali, Dusparsha, RajaPata and Adulsa.
The ingredients have their own powerful benefits and indications, for instance Ginger is used to promote digestion and manage chronic respiratory ailments, Amruth as an antipyretic with immunomodulatory benefits, Haritaki for its anti-inflammatory, anti-oxidant properties in the management of allergies, Pippali to manage indigestion, asthma and cough, Cloves as an anti-bacterial to promote liver health, Akarakarabha to manage cough and sore throat from Vata Dosha (energy principal of ether and air) imbalance and Musta to manage fever and Pitta (energy principal of fire and water) aggravation. Overall, the formulation is considered Tridosha pacifying.
Method of Preparation and Dosage:
Kabasura Kudineer is traditionally prepared into a Choornam (powder) by sun drying and grinding these indigenous herbs in a coarse powder. 240 ml of water is added to 5 gms Choornam to prepare a decoction or Kadha and heated to reduce the water to 1/4th of its initial volume. The aqueous decoction is filtered using a muslin cloth to remove any residues.
This potentiated decoction has been used to manufacture Sri Sri Tattva tablets, a convenient way to dispense them. (Traditionally, Kabasura Kudineer is given for a period of 6-12 weeks twice or thrice a day during an episode of cold or flu based on the severity of respiratory symptoms and fever). However, given that we are in the midst of a pandemic, there is a need to boost our immunity and Kabasura Kudineer is considered a powerful tool in overall prophylactic measures.
The recommendation from the Ministry of Ayush is regular consumption of Kabasura Kudineer and Sri Sri Tattva advises 2 tablets daily, AM and PM after meals.
Scientific studies and trials
Given the emergency situation during the pandemic, the TN government in India distributed Kabasura Kudineer to about 40,000,000 people for prophylaxis and nearly 30,000 asymptomatic and mild symptomatic patients have been treated exclusively with Siddha treatments in 33 standalone special COVID-care centers with Covid-19 specific trials going on parallel. The state has a recovery rate of 97%.
Many studies on Kabasura Kudineer have been undertaken, here is a partial list,
- Ayurgenomics Study: The study quoted above under the guidance of FIZ (Frankfurt Innovation Center), Germany, as part of the collaborative Ayurgenomics (genomics tools for Ayurveda) Project found that Kabasura Kudineer has the strongest inhibitor (84%) of spike glycoprotein in coronavirus strains. (Amruth and Immugen have similar inhibitory effects, 60-65 % and 80% respectively and Chyawanprash, 70-75 % with the concentrations tested).
FIZ has been studying anti-inflammatory and immune-boosting Ayurvedic formulations for their effectiveness in the management of the coronavirus SARS-CoV-2 and Arvind Varchaswi, MD, Sri Sri Tattva mentioned that such initiatives are always approached with a scientific temperament.
Another clinical study found that with not a single adverse event, use of Ayush interventions as an add-on therapy did not negatively impact clinical outcomes in Covid-19, confirming the safety of these herbs including Kabasura Kudineer, Shakti Drops and Turmeric Plus used amongst patients with mild symptoms. Dr C R Jayanthi, Dean and Director, BMCRI said that results showed “significant improvement of clinical and laboratory parameters like immunity markers and antioxidant markers after 14 days of treatment with Sri Sri Tattva immunity products, along with standard care.
- A paper published in the Asian Journal of Pharmaceutical Research and Health Care in January by K. Pitchian Kumar, State Licensing Authority, Directorate of Indian Medicine, Government of TN, India enumerated the possible therapeutic benefits of Kabasura Kudineer through simulations that its phytocompounds exhibited activity against spike glycoprotein, the surface protein that binds with a receptor and can possibly stop the virus from replicating.
- A study published in the Journal of Ayurveda and Integrative medicine about the in Silico computational screening of Kabasura Kudineer (and JACOM) against SARS-CoV-2 spike protein had promising results that show that Chrysoeriol and Luteolin from Kabasura Kudineer Chooranam have high binding affinity with spike protein. Further, in-silico pharmacokinetic and toxicity prediction showed that all the phytoconstituents have good oral bioavailability and are free from toxicity.
- A paper published on 23rd December in the Frontiers in Molecular Biosciences discussed through a docking study that Kabasura Kudineer can be used either to block the host cell receptor or to inactivate 3CLpro, the protease that controls the replication of the virus. This study analyzes 145 compounds as compared to 37 in the study cited in point 3.
- A study by students from Annamalai University titled “Anti-inflammatory, antipyretic and antibacterial study of Kabasura Kudineer Choornam” published in the ‘International Journal of Current Advanced Research’ was the first scientific validation of Kabasura Kudineer.
- Other Clinical trials: Trials were conducted in a quarantine facility in Thirupatthur and the LDH and CPK enzyme levels of the patients (that hike with SARS Cov-2) decreased after they were given Kabasura Kudineer. Since then many more trials have been conducted and are underway in Covid-19 hospitals and by the CCRS.
As the President of the NAMA (National Ayurvedic Medical Association) advised at the start of the pandemic, ‘Conservatively speaking and at this time, there are no known nutrients, botanicals, vaccines (it is wonderful there are now) or prescription or over-the-counter medicines available to prevent, treat, or cure COVID-19…Despite this, our community should be encouraged to employ the ancient knowledge of Ayurveda, which by nature upholds “prevention” as a core principle. Siddha and Ayurveda are based on similar philosophies.
As part of a preventative protocol, do continue to follow local guidelines, social distancing, hygiene practices, wear masks and use immunity boosting measures like meditation, yoga and healthy lifestyle practices.
Please note : Do consult an Ayurvedic Practitioner for individualised recommendations before starting an herbal regimen. It is also important to consult your doctor if you have any health issues.
This content is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health providers with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. Any links to third-party websites are provided as a convenience only and neither the author nor Sri Sri Tattva’s is responsible for their content.