The Vaidygrama Ayurvedic treatment center offers Ayurvedic treatments. This institute puts Ayurveda into practice through the way they live, unlike other ayurvedic centers that operate more like resorts or spas. The practitioners determine the body type of each patient who comes here for the first time during a consultation. Additionally, their physical state is also mentioned, and the following days, they are put into routines and diets where they recuperate or make their bodies healthy through everything they do.
When I reached the entrance, I could feel that something was different about the place. It is much more like home than a hospital because of the environment they have created with trees and reforestation of the place using medicinal and indigenous plants. Staff, whether they are treating patients or cooking food, are all content in their jobs and enjoy interacting with you.
When I was backpacking in India, why was I there? A search for permaculture villages in Coimbatore, or some combination of such searches, brought up the name of Vaidyagrama. Moreover, I was confused about why an Ayurvedic treatment center was listed in the results, so I checked their Facebook page.
First, there was a picture of a doctor giving away biodegradable sanitary napkins in a nearby school. Then, as I scrolled down, I came across the Punarnava community, which is not just any Ayurvedic treatment center.
After reaching out to the authorities, I was welcomed by the community and given the opportunity to explore their facilities and take part in their activities. That is how I ended up Vaidyagrama treatment center on a Friday evening.
In response to my outreach, I was invited to explore the community’s facilities and participate in itsnuous mountain ranges of western ghats and the blue sky on a sunny day.
In Vaidyagrama, there is food
Here, food is an essential part of the treatment. In the kitchen, patients receive freshly prepared vegetarian food. Although few spices are used, the food is good, really good.
In today’s world, I am always looking for vegan and vegetarian foods. In any case, I think I asked Geetha more than once to confirm that. The vegetarian diet at vaidyagrama.com is a healthy one. Dairy products such as milk and ghee are prominent in the food. The food would still be delicious, even if you were a vegan.
Briquettes are used to prepare the food in the yellow flame. These blocks are made of a mix of wood, dried manure, and other materials. They can be bought at the market. There is a lot of excitement about them.
In Indian households, chai is one of the most common foods. A different kind of tea was served to me at Vaidyagrama. It was made with unrefined sugar/jaggery and grass extracts, as well as other ingredients that I don’t recognize. It tasted great though.
Buildings in the treatment center are divided into alphabetical blocks. There are four rooms in each block. Every patient in one of these blocks is taken care of by a physician and a therapist.
but we’ll talk about that later. patients all seated in a circle in the hall. a chance for patients from all groups to share their stories. Human connections are also part of the treatment, and all those I encountered there seemed genuinely happy about them.
Different groups gathered on different days and had a good time in the mandapam. Also here is where satang is held before the day begins and where yoga classes take place. A lotus pot in front of Mandapam, its one calming spot, will not just be ignored.
My stay at Vaidyagrama coincided with the Navarathri festival. There was another room where patients could attend Ayurveda classes and chanting sessions. In celebration of the festive season, the hall was illuminated and colourful dolls were arranged as part of the ritual.
There is a pharmacy inside Vaidyagrama as well. Medications are mostly obtained from the main in-house pharmacy in Palakkad and then portioned out according to the needs of the patients.
Due to overcrowding in the hospital rooms, I had to stay in the Balagrama Hotel.