Thursday, June 24, 2010
Ayurveda answers for all
COLUMN: AT THE HELM
Dr. S. Sajikumar says that hair loss and skin problems afflict most women these days. His company, Dhathri Ayurveda Pvt. Ltd., provides timely solutions
By Shevlin Sebastian
When Dr. S. Sajikumar, the chairman and managing director of Dhathri Ayurveda Pvt. Ltd., was practicing at Warrier's Hospital in Kayamkulam, several years ago, a mother brought her 18-year-old daughter, Bhavna, for treatment. Her body was covered with psoriasis – an inflammatory skin disease characterised by scaly patches.
“It was quite bad,” says Sajikumar. People in their neighbourhood became angry as they felt that the disease was contagious. But after three months of regular treatment, Bhavna was cured. “In fact she looked beautiful and, later, had a good marriage,” says Sajikumar.
Recently, the Alleppey-based Bhavna came to visit the doctor. She had brought along her daughter, Ritu. “Bhavna wanted to know whether Ritu would have the same problem,” says Sajikumar. “I checked and saw that the chances were slim.” When Sajikumar saw Bhavna again he felt a deep sense of happiness, satisfaction, and accomplishment.
It was during his stint at Kayamkulam that Sajikumar came across numerous cosmetic problems like acne and hair fall. “I realised that this was an area in which Ayurveda’s commercial potential had not been developed at all,” he says.”
So he started the Dhathri Ayurveda, Beauty and Slimming (ABS) clinics in 2003. The company provides solutions in the hair, skin care, and health segments.
Interestingly, the most common complaint among women is hair loss and skin problems. “This is the result of our lifestyle and the food we eat,” he says.
In earlier times, there was high nutrition and low calorie foods. Now it is high calorie, and low nutrition. “I am talking of junk food like burgers, French fries, noodles, and carbonated drinks,” says Sajikumar. “We think it is good for us, but it is actually poisonous.”
The doctor suggests that we eat rice, vegetables, pulses, fish, and wheat products. “There should be very little oil in it,” he says. Unlike in the past, oil is heated at more than 100 degrees Centigrade today, which results in carbon being one of the components.
“This settles inside the body and, in the long term, damages the colon,” says Sajikumar. “We could end up with cancer. Eat natural foods as far as possible. And let your mind be relaxed all the time.”
Unfortunately, owing to a frenzied lifestyle, most people are stressed-out and anxiety-ridden. They suffer from diabetes, hypertension, obesity, heart problems and posture complaints like cervical and lower-back pain.
Because of these problems, the people are coming to his clinics regularly for relief.
However, there are others who come because of the new trend to look beautiful. “More women are working and are aware of the need to look good,” says Sajikumar. “When you are attractive, you feel self-confident.”
Ranjini Nair, who works in the travel industry, is a regular customer. “I like the products made by Dhathri,” she says. “Since it is Ayurveda-based, there are no side-effects.”
Apart from looking good, losing weight is a preoccupation with most clients. “It is very difficult to shed the kilos,” says Sajikumar, with a smile. “To gain weight is easy because eating is a pleasure. However, when people want to lose weight, they find it difficult to abstain from food. Instead, they want quick-fix solutions.”
So, in the clinic, after a careful study, the amount of fat and water that has to be reduced will be decided. “We will burn this out through ayurveda therapy and specific treatments, like Italian aesthetic technology,” says Sajikumar. To reduce five kilos, it takes 7 to 10 sessions spread over a month.
Meanwhile, good fortune is smiling on Sajikumar. He was recently given the Best Ayurveda Doctor (Yuva Prathibha) award by the state government for distinguished services to the community.
The company has a Rs 40 crore turnover and the products, made in factories in Muvattupuzha and Kayamkulam, are sent to UK, Australia, Kuwait, Bahrain, and the United Arab Emirates. Sales are good, profits are comfortable, and this is embodied in the fact that Sajikumar moves around in a Mercedes Benz E class vehicle.
Asked about the qualities needed to be successful, he says, “You have to be transparent in your dealings with the staff, customers, and outsiders. When you offer a product it should be of a very high quality. Finally, you should be confident and have a sense of conviction about whatever you are doing.”
(Some names have been changed)
(The New Indian Express, Kochi)