Unani has a history of more than 5,000 years. It is being practiced by millions of patients across the world. Though it cannot be a replacement for modern medicine in terms of investigation, diagnosis and emergency care, it has been found to be effective in a number of chronic diseases such as asthma, diabetes, arthritis, leucoderma etc.
Unani medicine system started off in Greece between 460 and 377 BC. Arabs and the Persians introduced Unani to India. It is based on the theory of Humoral where it is believed that every humor leads to a definite temperament in the human body. The system of Unani utilizes animal, plants and minerals products as curative agents for establishment of original humoral constitution.
Unani works on the basis of four individual humors and maintains a balance between the two. It creates equilibrium between various aspects of attitude, nutrition and hygiene. This is a traditional system of medicine which is based on findings of various Greek physicians. It gained popularity after it was adapted by Arab and Persian practitioner. During the rule of Delhi Sultanate, it became immensely popular in China and India.
Some of the popular products of Unani are Almond Oil and Egg Oil which are used for hair care. It is very much similar to Ayurveda as it is based on the elements of air, water, earth and fire. It is believed that imbalance of any of these elements leads to illness.
Unani is based on the concept of Black bile, Yellow bile, Phlegm and Blood. India has around forty Unani medical colleges where teaching of Unani medicine system is imparted. Unani arrived in India in the 13th century during the reign of Delhi Sultanate. It is believed that Alauddin Khilji recruited several Unani scholars and physicians in his royal court and this lead to development of Unani in India on a massive scale.
Unani seeks inspiration from teachings of Charaka and Sushrata. Hakim Ajmal Khan popularized the concept of Unani in India. It suffered during the British era where it lost government patronage but was revived again by various royal families of princely states.
Hippocrates who was a Greek philosopher and physician gave Unani the status of science. This medicine system owes its development to Iranian, Arab and Indian physicians. Now various governments across the world are recognizing Unani and allocating funds to ensure its development. Unani has definitely created a name for itself in the global medicine field.