Ayurveda, a natural medical system, originated in India over 3,000 years ago. Ayurveda is derived from the Sanskrit words Ayur (life) and Veda (science) (science or knowledge). Thus, Ayurveda means "life knowledge." Ayurveda is a system of alternative medicine with historical roots in the Indian subcontinent. Its theory and practice are pseudoscientific. Ayurveda is widely practiced in India and Nepal, where approximately 80% of the population claims to use it.
Ayurvedic therapies have changed and evolved over the course of two millennia. Herbal medicines, special diets, meditation, yoga, massage, laxatives, enemas, and medical oils are examples of therapies. Ayurvedic remedies are typically composed of complex herbal compounds, minerals, and metal substances (perhaps under the influence of early Indian alchemy or rasashastra). Ancient Ayurvedic texts also taught surgical techniques such as rhinoplasty, kidney stone extraction, sutures, and foreign object extraction.