Prevention of Cardiovascular Disease according to Ayurveda
Heart is one of the vital organs in humans and Ayurveda has explained that special care should be taken for protection of this trimarmas. Cardiovascular diseases are the group of disease of the heart and the vascular system. The major conditions are ischemic heart disease, hypertension and congenital heart disease. Rheumatic heart disease continues to be an important health problem in many developing countries. Now a day, diet and life style pattern of whole population across the world has changed. Changes in diet and lifestyle pattern, lack of exercise, increased stress factor, environmental changes had increased the incidence of cardiovascular disease. In the case of cardiology for preventing the disease, Ayurved has explained Rasayan therapy, Panchakarma chikitsa, diet and lifestyle modification, Yoga and pranayam. In cardiovascular diseases ayurved has its literature for the cause, pathophysiology, types, preventive measures and treatment.
What is heart according to Ayurveda?
Hruday (hridayam) is the word for heart in Aayurveda. It is a center (mulasthan) for pranavah strotas,rasavaha strotas,manovah strotas and Oja. According to Ayurveda, hridayam is a maternal organ and is formed from Khapha, Rakta, and Mamsa Dhatu. Hridya is the sthana of Vyana Vayu, Sadhakapitta, Avalambak kapha, ojha which makes the heart to pump to circulate the Dhatus. So any vitiation in the dosha during its formation can lead to various diseases.
Symptoms of Hridroga according to Ayurveda:
• Vaivarnya (Cyanosis),
• Murcha (Syncope),
• Kasa (cough),
• Hikka (Hiccough),
• Shwasa (Dysponea and Orthopnoea),
• Mukha Vairasya (better taste),
• Trishna (Excessive Thirst),
• Pramoha (Stupor),
• Chardi (Vomiting),
• Kaphoutklesha (Nausea),
• Ruja (Chest pain),
• Aruchi (Anorexia),
• shotha (oedema),
• hrud-drava palpitation),
• klama (fatigue) etc.
Risk Factors for hrudrogas (cardiovascular diseases):
• High Blood pressure (Hypertension)
• High Blood Cholesterol
• Uncontrolled Diabetes
• Obesity and Overweight
• Physical Inactivity
• Gender (males are at higher risk)
• Sex Hormones
• Birth control pills
• Excessive Alcohol intake
Prevention for hrudrogas according to Ayurveda:
Various preventive measures are mentioned in available Ayurvedic literature:
Diet and lifestyle modification.
Various types of Rasayan kalpas are prescribed after shodhana therapy, it helps in maintaining the immunity and thus one can prevent various diseases.
Use of Hridya gana: – Amra, Amrataka, Lakucha, Karamarda, Vrksamla, Amlavetasa, Kuvala, Badara, Dadima, Matulunga etc
Following Aachar Rasayan (good habbits) is also useful.
Panchakarma therapy: – Performing various Panchakarma modalities likes Snehan (oleation), Swedan (fomentation), Vaman (emetic therapy), virechana (purgation therapy), Basti (medicated enema therapy), nasya (inhalation therapy) are useful in preventing various cardiovascular diseases by treating dyslipidemia, obesity. A very specialized Hrid basti a type of snehan( oleation therapy) and Swedan (fomentation) provides bal(strength) to Hridaya, strotas.
Yoga therapy: – Various asanas are explained by aacharyas, which are useful providing bal to hridya and strotas, these include:
• charak sutrasthan explains that, humans (cell) are dependent on food for their living and also diseases are dependent on what food we eat.
• To improve metabolic conversion (anabolism) use of deepen and pachan dravyas like Hingu, Ajawain, lasun.
• Use plenty of raw or cooked salads or vegetables like Cabbage, Cauliflower, Cucumber, Carrots, etc.
• Vegetables prepared with no or very little oil e.g., green leafy vegetables like Spinach, Radish, Bringal, lady’s finger, cabbage, cauliflower, chapatti without oil, Skimmed milk.
• Controlled use of MUFA like olive, Groundnut oil, mustard oil.
• Controlled use of PUFA like Sunflower oil. It’s better to use kardi oil.
• Avoid Saturated fat like Dalda, Butter.
• Avoid reuse of oil for frying is not allowed as it contains more free radicals.
• For fibers eat leafy vegetables and eat fruits and avoid fruit juices.
• Fibers reduce the cholesterol absorption.
• Cessation of smoking One the best thing one can do for self is avoiding tobacco in any of the form available.
• Weight reduction Obesity is a large contributor for many of the cardiovascular disease.
Type ll diabetes and Hypertension control Strict diabetic diet and good glycaemic control by insulin or OHA along with good control over hypertension reduces the risk of cardiovascular diseases.
The karma which brings fatigueness like feeling is called as Vyayama. Vyayama helps in reducing the levels of Serum Cholesterol, relieves hypertension and improves overall general Physiology of the body.