PREVENTION AND MANAGEMENT OF DIABETES THROUGH AYURVEDA IN CONTEXT OF MODERN LIFESTYLE by Dr Sudarshan Hande

Diabetes was known to Indians from Vedic period by the name Asrava (Prameha). Diabetes is also known as Madhumeha in Ayurveda. Madhumeha (Diabetes Mellitus) has become a global problem in spite of advances in modern science. India has been projected by WHO as the country with the fastest growing population of Diabetic patients. It is said that Prevention is better than cure, so before going for treatment, we need to know causes of diabetes so that one can prevent its occurrence. The main causes of Prameha (Diabetes) are sedentary lifestyle, lack of exercise,  Diwaswap (day time sleeping),  improper food habits, in excess food intake which primarily falls in the category of Sheet (Cold), Snigdha (Oily) and Guru (Heavy), Abhishyandi (Blocks Channels) category. Intake of sweet milk products, jaggery, curd, bakery food, fermented food, meat, coldrinks are some good examples. Food that leads to vitiation of Kapha (Dosha), Meda (Body fat) and Mutra (Urine) are the chief etiological factors for Prameha (Diabetes). The characteristic features of all types of Prameha (Diabetes) are Prabhuta and Aavila Mutrata & Medo Dushti Lakshanas (excessive urination & turbidity in urine and symptoms of vitiated Medodhatu-body fat). Therefore if anybody finds such alarming signs one should follow dietary rules & other things mentioned in Ayurveda such as practice of regular exercise, intake of Laghu Ahar ( food which is easy to digest) like Yava (Barley), luke warm water, avoid day sleeping, Yoga to prevent occurrence of Prameha (Diabetes).

Individual suffering from Prameha (Diabetes) primarily does not seek doctor’s help unless & until any complications develop. Fatigue, excessive thirst and excessive urination are some of the symptoms for which the diseased person approaches physician. According to Ayurveda the line of treatment of Prameha (Diabetes) is strictly on individual’s constitution. In newly diagnosed obese diabetic patients with optimal body strength with increase of Doshas need Shodhana Chikitsa (purification of the body) in the form of Panchakarma. This depends on Dosha predominance such as Kaphaja are adviced to have Vamana (use of emetics), Pittaja are advised to have Virechana (purgation). After Shodhana Chikitsa (purification of the body), Shamana Chikitsa (palliative treatment) is advised. The drug of choice must be both Dosha Shamana (correction of Dhosha) and Roga Shamana (Cure of disease).

The diabetes can be controlled by giving comprehensive attention to 3 aspects;

1) Ahara (Diet): Laghu Ahar, Pathya Ahar- Yava (Barley), Godhuma (Wheat), Bajara, Mudga (Green gram), Chanaka (Gram), Tikta shakas (bitter in taste), Methika, Nimba, Karavella, Rasona (Garlic), Udumbara, Jambu (Black berry),  Amalaki (Awala), Haridra (Turmeric), Madhu (Honey), Gomutra (Cow urine), Harina (Deer flesh), Shashaka (Rabbit), Birds like Kapota (Pigeon), Old wine, Mustard, avoid Viruddhaahar.

2) Vihara (Habits): Daily Abhyanga, Exercise, avoid Diwaswap & gap of minimum 2hrs between dinner & sleep, Yoga.

3) Aushadha (Medicine): Phalatrikadi Kashaya, Chandraprabha Vati, Vasant Kusumakar Rasa, Suvarnarajvangeshwar etc.

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