Following the great migration from the continent of Africa, homo-sapiens made way around the world and some of which settled in Hambantota, Sri Lanka. They grew in civilization along many ages upon which time they developed their own tool, technology and even medicine.
In a history that is unfamiliar to many, Sri Lanka practiced its own traditional medicine known as “Hela Wedakama” and was practiced for thousands of years by royalty and countrymen alike. This practice is different to that of Ayurveda, which is a culmination of medicine from India, Greece and the Arab nations. With the use of indigenous herbs, plants and spiritual healing practices used over a rich history of over 5000 years, Hela Wedakama is a medicinal practice which is often overlooked.
This method of medication treats the body as a whole since the practice believes that the mind, body and soul are connected and an imbalance or disharmony between them leads to the many illnesses that we have identified today. Furthermore, the holistic medicinal practice heals the underlying problem and not just the surface level symptoms. As opposed to modern western medicine, it does not provide instant relief but works itself over time to address the root cause than spot reducing symptoms.
Over the years, traditional methods have been utilized in treating many contemporary illnesses in the likes of: Anxiety, depression, various types of cancer, blood pressure regulation, diabetes and many more. The practice is also found useful in cosmetic solutions such as acne treatments and is used extensively in the local beauty industry.
Traditional medicine is also used in part of the daily diet. Since the herbs are rich in multivitamins, mineral, it promotes a healthy gut system. The antioxidants found in the herbs also helps reduce the risk of cardiovascular diseases and brain related illnesses. The overall healthy diet aids to reduce body fat and is a widely regarded cure for obesity.
Traditional medicine is now considered globally as means of mitigating severe diabetes, which causes millions of deaths annually. While there is no breakthrough cure of diabetes, it is being moderated in patients with an array of western medication which in turn causes other problems to the human body. Conversely, traditional medicine utilizes every consuming herbs and spices in concoction as treatment. This includes spices such as Cinnamon, Fenugreek and Aloe Vera. Many medicinal powders are derived from cereal, fruit and vinegars to control blood glucose and insulin spikes in patients. Apart from the aforementioned, many herbal messages and detoxification programmes are used in treating diabetes and they have tested effective time and time again.
Hela Wedakama is to this date revered for its effectiveness in comparison to its western counterparts. The traditional practice of herbs, spices and rituals to this date remains an integral part of the Sri Lankan culture and has much more to contribute into transforming the health and medicinal sectors of the world.