The word “Ayurveda” is formed by two words “āyus”, meaning "longevity" and “veda” meaning "associated with knowledge or science." Thus, Ayurveda is "the comprehensive knowledge/science for a long life." It is a holistic system of renovating and maintaining a harmonious body, mind, and soul. Ayurvedic medicine is an alternative way of healing with traditional medicines native to India. It is a system of Indian medicine now practiced all over the world as an alternative system of natural treatment.
Ayurvedic practitioners have originated a number of medicinal preparations and surgical ways for treating various diseases and ailments. The earliest texts on Indian medical practices appeared during the Vedic period in India. Especially, Suśruta Saṃhitā and the Charaka Saṃhitā are the two great almanacs of medicine — the substratum of Ayurveda — compiled from various sources. However, the major spring of knowledge in Ayurveda has always remained the Atharvaved, viz. the fourth series of the Vedas. Also, the Astanga Hridayam - a more succinct compilation of earlier writings — was compiled around a thousand years back.