Wednesday, September 27, 2006
Prophet's Medicine: Herbal And Spiritual Cure For All Problems
September 27, 2006
By Syed Akbar
Hyderabad, Sept 16: Young Rubina is on a diet regulation eating figs and dates to shed that extra fat in her body. Middle-aged Abdul Kareem takes black cumin seeds to keep his blood cholesterol under check. Septuagenarian Zaheeruddin gulps a syrup of pure honey to fight his abdominal trouble while his daughter-in-law Fathima gives vapours of incense to her son to beat throat infection.
All these Hyderabadis are on a prescription of Tibbe Nabawi or the Prophet's Medicine, which is fast taking its roots in the city as an alternative system of curative and preventive medical practice. People suffering from common ailments and patients with chronic diseases including those with obesity are increasingly turning to Tibbe Nabawi. Giving a modern touch to this 1500-year-old Islamic system of medicine, some pharmaceutical companies are marketing facial masks, beauty creams, hail oil, massage oil and ointments based on the Prophet's prescriptions. And they are in good demand.
At least a dozen Tibbe Nabawi clinics have been opened in Hyderabad and other parts of the State to cater to the vast clientele. As many as eight different books on the Prophet's Medicine are now available in city book shops.
Says eminent physician Dr Fakhruddin Muhammad, "the efficacy of the pharmacopoeia of the Prophet's Medicine is scientifically proved by dozens of research organisations including the Food and Drugs Administration. It is based on natural herbs and food products without any addition of chemicals. It is a lifestyle management system to prevent health problems and cure diseases".
Practitioners of the Prophet's Medicine prescribe commonly available herbs and fruits (raw or extracts) like grapes, pomegranates, citrus, honey, henna, dates (specially of the ajwa variety), olive, methi (fenugreek), aloe vera, rosewater, hibiscus, miswak, black cumin (kalonji), sweet basil (myrtle), ginger, Indian incense (Ud-al-Hind), truffles, watercress, squash, melons and figs.
The treatment ranges from cardiac problems to pleurisy, obesity to malnourishment, respiratory troubles to anaemia and renal obstructions, improvement of eyesight and mental agility to toning up skin texture and deworming to healing of wounds, both internal and external. As many as 30 products are available in the city market based on Kalonji combinations alone. People who have had a heart attack and have survived are prescribed the combination of honey, sana maki and ajwaa dates to speed up recovery.
Dr Fatemeh Mojtahedi, an MBBS doctor, has switched over to the Prophet's Medicine in her Avicenna Clinic to treat obesity. She has formulated "slim capsules" based on the herbs and fruits mentioned in ancient Islamic medical literature inspired by Tibbe Nabawi.
"The important thing we can learn from prophetic nutrition is moderation. Treatment of obesity is quite simple in the Prophet's medicine: eating simple and wholesome natural foods and herbs, and drinking plenty of water. Since the Prophet's Medicine normalises the metabolism and curbs the appetite, patients, who shed excess weight, continue to maintain their slim and trim figure even after the treatment is over," explains Dr Fatemeh. She has treated about 8000 patients and one of them has reportedly lost 58.5 kgs in nine months and 15 days. Dr Fatemeh is approaching the Guinness Book of World Records with a claim of reducing obesity in the shortest time.
The interest in Prophet's Medicine increased in the local populace after the International Institute of Islamic Medicine and the Islamic Medical Association of North America jointly held a conference a few years ago on the scientific validity of the medical prescriptions given by the Holy Prophet.
Following the conference, many have abandoned their toothpaste and toothbrushes in favour of Miswak stick, which the practitioners of the Prophet's Medicine point out strengthens the gums and prevents tooth decay, improves the sense of taste and assists in digestion.
Dr Qudratullah Hussami, whose Islamic Research Academy has done pioneering research in the Prophet's Medicine, points out that "Tibbe Nabawi is a nothing but a collection of Hadith that instruct Muslims on the subject of sickness or medical treatment. Most of the products used in this system of medicine are prescribed by the Prophet himself or utilised by him. Over 200 university research papers have proved the efficacy of the medicine, particularly the black cumin seeds".
Hakeem Muhammad Zaheer Ahmad prescribes black cumin (Kalonji or
Nigella sativa) to his patients to treat asthma, control of sugar in blood and urine, psoriasis, hypertension, hypotension and skin diseases. He is also working on the efficacy of black cumin seeds in the treatment of cancer.
Dr Syed Jaleel Hussain, former director of the Central Research Institute in Unani Medicine, says the Prophet has prescribed olive oil for treatment of haemorrhoids (piles). Kalonji extract removes obstructions in body, expels gases and strengthens the stomach.
"Kalonji oil has improved my hair growth. It has successfully controlled falling of hair due to alopecia. The drug has also improved my skin texture," says Rafique Ahmad, a resident of Charminar. According to inter student Zareena Almas, the facial mask and beauty cream prepared from Kalonji has been quite effective in controlling pimples and blackheads. "Unlike common creams which are heavily loaded with chemicals, the Tibbe Nabawi creams do not cause any skin rashes or irritants. There's no need for even a skin patch test," she observes.
Dr Ghousuddin, consultant pharmacologist, refers to medical reports in support of his claim that the Prophet's Medicine has been useful in paralysis, facial palsy, migraine, amnesia and palpitation.
Islamic scholar Moulana Hasanul Hashmi is of the view that Tibbe Nabawi is not only a curative and preventive system of medicine but it also gives a "rewarding experience". The Prophet's Medicine is based on Sunnah and it is a good thing (Nek Kaam) for Muslims to follow it, he says.