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The medicines and preparations in Ayurveda come in different forms. Some preparations are very simple and some other preparations demand very elaborate techniques that could last for days We list below a few of them for the reference and basic knowledge of the consumer.
Freshly extracted juice of a plant or various plants.

Method: Selected, cleaned part crushed to a soft paste without adding water and strained through a muslin cloth.

Mode of consumption : Normally consumed with honey or raw sugar.
Shelf life: Up to 24 hrs
Example: Tulasi, Shunthi, Neem
Is a soft paste of a fresh or a dry herb.

Method : Fresh herb is ground without adding water and a dry herb with a little water to obtain a fine paste.
Mode of consumption : Taken with any one of the following depending on the person. Milk, water, raw sugar, honey, ghee.
Shelf life: Up to 24 hrs
Example: Ginger paste, garlic paste, neem leaf paste.
Is a fine or coarse powder of dried herbs

Method : The desired herb/herbs are selected, dried powdered and mixed in the right proportions.
Mode of consumption : Taken with honey, ghee, milk, water, oil ,raw sugar
Shelf life: Up to 6 months
Example: Triphala choorna.
Hot infusion, prepared by boiling the powdered medicinal herb in water.

Method: to one part of coarsely powdered herb, 4 or 8 parts of water are added , heated without a lid in low to moderate flame till reduced to 1 part. strained and used.
Mode of consumption : Taken with milk, water, Raw sugar, Honey
Shelf life: Up to 24hrs
Example: Maharasnadi kwatha , Triphala kashaya
Milk reduced and infused with herbal decoction.

Method: 1 part of coarsely ground herbs are mixed with 32 parts of water and reduced to 8 parts ( a quarter of the original volume) and strained . Equal quantity of milk is added to the reduced part and again reduced to half the volume.
Mode of consumption :Taken with honey, raw sugar ,molasses
Shelf life : Up to 24 hours
Example: Arjuna kshirapaaka.
Cold infusion of spices and volatile herbs soaked overnight in water and strained in the morning.

Method:1 part coarsely powdered herb/spice is mixed with 6 parts of water and soaked overnight. It is macerated well and filtered through a clean cloth.
Mode of consumption :Taken with raw sugar, honey
Shelf life:upto 24 hrs
Example :Haymaker hima [coriander cold infusion].
Medicated distilled water.

Method : Powdered herb is soaked in water for 2 to 4 hours, mixed with 10 parts of water and then distilled The collected distillate is preserved for use.
Mode of consumption : This is taken with water.
Shelf life 1 to 2 years.
Example: Ajamoda Arka, Shatapushpa arka, Tulasi arka.
This is a semisolid paste preparation.

Method : Raw sugar is mixed with the juice or decoction of the herbs and other ingredients and cooked to the desired consistency. Finely powdered herbs, spices, ghee is added and honey is added when cooled.
Shelf life : Upto 1 year.
Mode of consumption : Taken with Milk, warm water or sugarcane juice as directed.
Example : Chyavanprash , Kooshmaanda, Shathavariguda.
These are ayurvedic pills of powdered herbs.

Method: Finely powdered herbs are mixed with raw sugar and/or natural resins and/or water and/or fresh herb extracts with or without heating ,formed into pills and dried.
Shelf life : Between 2 years to lifelong
Mode of consumption : Taken with milk, warm water, butter milk, honey as directed.
Example : Chitrakaadi vati, Gokshuraadi guggulu.
VARTI (Suppositories)
These are elongated suppositories with elongated ends.

Method : Finely powdered herbs are added to a thick jaggery syrup or fresh herbal extracts and formed into suppositories.
Shelf life : Depends on the application
Mode of application : As directed by the physician.
Example : Netra varti , Guda varti, Yoni varti.
This is a mixture of a salt and ash of the herb.

Method : The mixture of the herb and salts are ignited together in a closed container to get a mixture of ash and salt.
Shelf life : Infinite
Mode of consumption: With water, buttermilk.
Example: Naarikela lavana, Arka lavana.
This (Satva) is the medicated starch of a medcinal plant.

Method : The desired medicinal plant is crushed and soaked in water for about 8 hours . The fibers are squeezed and removed . Water is left undisturbed to let the starch sediment at the bottom The sediment is collected, cleaned and dried in shade.
Shelf life: 1 to 5 years
Mode of consumption : With honey ,water, milk
Example: Amrita satva, shunti satva.
Alkaline substances by processing the ash of the medicinal plant.

Method : Ash of the desired plant(s) is soaked overnight in 4 to 6 parts of water . The mixture is stirred well and filtered in the morning. This process is repeated 21 times with fresh samples of water (till the ph paper shows neutral reaction) . The filtrate is heated till the water evaporates and the resulting powder is stored for use.
Mode of consumption: As directed by the physician.
Shelf life: Up to 5 years.
Example : Apamaarga kshaara. Palaasha kshaara.
Medicated oils or ghee for internal or external use.

Method : The decoction of herbs is boiled with a paste of herbs and oil or ghee.
Shelf life: 4 months.
Mode of consumption: With warm water or warm milk for internal consumption. Direct application in case of external use.
Example : Ksheera bala tailam, Phala ghrta. Triphala ghrta.
Fermented plant extract or decoction

Method : The extract or decoction of a medicinal plant (s) is fermented with raw sugar or molasses for 30 to 40 days in a closed container.
Shelf life: Infinite
Mode of consumption: Diluted with warm water
Example : Kumaryasava, Dashamoolaarishta.
Medicines in the form of a paste used for external application.

Method : The powdered medicinal herbs are mixed with water or oil or medicated ghee or herbal decoctions to obtain a smooth paste.
Shelf life : Depending on the preparation
Mode of application : Applied externally wherever necessary.
Example : Dashanga lepa
Is a smooth herbal ointment

Method : Medicated herbal oils are mixed with bees wax or other natural resins to from a homogeneous mixture.
Shelf life : 1 year.
Mode of application : Applied externally wherever necessary.
Example: Karpura malahara.