Lifestyle disorder tackling through Ayurveda
Ayurveda is a natural health care system that originated in India more than 5000 years ago. Its main objective is to achieve optimal health and well-being through a comprehensive approach that addresses mind, body, behavior, and environment. Ayurveda emphasizes prevention and health promotion, and provides treatment for disease. It considers the development of consciousness to be essential for optimal health and meditation as the main technique for achieving this. Treatment of disease is highly individualized and depends on the psycho-physiologic constitution of the patient. There are different dietary and lifestyle recommendations for each season of the year. Common spices are utilized in treatment, as well as herbs and herbal mixtures, and special preparations known as Rasayanas are used for rejuvenation, promotion of longevity, and slowing of the aging process. A group of purification procedures known as Panchakarma removes toxins from the physiology. Whereas Western allopathic medicine is excellent in handling acute medical crises, Ayurveda demonstrates an ability to manage chronic disorders that Western medicine has been unable to. It may be projected from Ayurveda's comprehensive approach, emphasis on prevention, and ability to manage chronic disorders that its widespread use would improve the health status of the world's population.
The incidence of lifestyle diseases like hypertension, diabetes mellitus, dyslipidemia, and overweight/obesity associated with cardiovascular diseases is high on the rise. Cardio vascular disorders continue to be the major cause of mortality representing about 30% of all deaths worldwide. With rapid economic development and increasing westernization of lifestyle in the past few decades, prevalence of these diseases has reached alarming proportions among Indians in the recent years. As Ayurveda is recognized as foremost life science and describes ways to prevent and manage lifestyle disorders, the world is being attracted towards its potential. Ayurveda provides better solution in the forms of proper dietary management, lifestyle advises, Panchakarma like detoxification and bio-purification procedures, medicaments, and rejuvenation therapies. The holistic approach of Ayurveda, treating the patient as a whole, meaning intervention targeted toward complete physical, psychological, and spiritual well-being makes this science a wonderful option in lifestyle disorders.
Basically, a particular lifestyle of person is a cumulative product of his/her physical capacity coordinated with psychological functioning, displayed in the form of habits, behavior, dietary and living pattern based on his own training sought from childhood, and mimicries he gained from his immediate companions including parents, siblings, peers, etc. Thus, it involves a pure psychological and innate control over the physical and sensory activities. When this initiation, control, and co-ordination are disturbed, it leads to the derangement of lifestyle and results in any lifestyle disorder. Ayurveda narrated this phenomenon as ‘Prajnaparadha’ (intellectual blasphemy) which is one of the three basic causes of any disease. There are ample improper actions as an impact of Prajnaparadha which are root causes of various diseases, e.g., habit of suppression of any natural urge is a result of Prajnaparadha and enlisted as a cause of nearly 50% of the diseases. Reversal of any neurotransmission or improper removal of the waste products formed during metabolism leading to accumulation of toxins is the basic cause of a disease. Therefore, the habit of suppression of urge in improper lifestyle can be considered as one of the root causes of lifestyle diseases. Removal of these accumulated waste products is the first line of treatment as described in Ayurveda by Charaka as well as in Naturopathy by Hippocrates, Henry Lindlarh, and Mahatma Gandhi.
In the management of lifestyle diseases, Ayurveda offers various regimens through Swasthavritta which comprises Dinacharya (daily regimen), Ritucharya (seasonal regimen), Panchakarma (five detoxification and bio-purification therapies), and Rasayana (rejuvenation) therapies. The Sadvritta (ideal routines) and Aachara Rasayana (code of conduct) are utmost important to maintain a healthy and happy psychological perspective. The inclusive utilization of all these treatment modalities has a great effect on lifestyle disorders. Moreover, the application of organ- specific Rasayana herbs also provides enough scope not only for prevention of disease, but also for the promotion of health and cure of disease too. Cardio-vascular disorders are discussed under Hridrogain Ayurveda. Hridaya has been referred to be the site of psyche. Any kind of psychological disturbance will lead to a disturbed patho-physiology of heart. Hence, it has been told to protect the heart from every kind of stressor (Pariharya Visheshena Manaso Dukkhahetavah). On the contrary, conventional western medicine deals with the cardio-vascular disorder with single side of somatic disorder. Hence, Ayurveda has an upper edge in treating the disease with emphasis on its root cause. The Ayurvedic physician concentrates on achieving the objective of Ayurveda for promotion of health, prevention and management of disease for a healthy and happy life in the ailing society.