Lifestyle diseases can be defined as those health problems that occur due to lifestyle changes. The changed living habits due to increasing sedentary lifestyle, job requirements and competitive living are the main culprits against a healthy life. These are non-communicable diseases and the primary causes of it can be Lack of physical activity, unhealthy food habits, poor sleeping patterns and stress. The fundamental outcome of most lifestyle disorders is inflammation. For example, Hypertension is a condition where there is high pressure in the arteries. Hypertension treatment in Ayurveda is aimed at managing the condition with personalized therapy. The major lifestyle diseases include:
- Metabolic Syndrome
- Type 2 Diabetes
There are controllable and uncontrollable factors that contribute to lifestyle diseases. The controllable factors are habits, practices, behaviour, thoughts etc where we have control over the factors and can be changed if need be.
For Example exercise, smoking, alcohol, sleep, drugs, relationships, diet etc.
Each biological cycle has its prominence in maintaining a healthy life. Hence the importance of sleep in keeping good health should never be looked down on. A person is diagnosed to have sleep problems when there are changes in the way they sleep. Sleep deprivation can affect the overall health and well being of a person. Ayurveda evaluates the sleep pattern of a person to understand the type of dosha imbalance leading to sleep disorder before customizing the treatment plan.
The uncontrollable factors associated with lifestyle disorders are the ones that cannot be changed as per our will, for example, age, heredity, gender and age. Lifestyle diseases are infirmities of slow progression and prolonged-term. Most of them are preventable. As it takes a long period to develop, it is even more difficult to get a cure for the ailment easily. Combating lifestyle diseases need to be done with a properly balanced diet and physical activity.
Ayurveda is considered a life science that is based on natural healing. With its holistic approach, it educates us by effectively describing ways to manage as well as prevent lifestyle diseases. The ayurvedic solution towards lifestyle disorder cure is by proper dietary management and healthy lifestyle practices along with detoxification and rejuvenation treatments.
The most prevalent of all lifestyle disorders is Obesity. It is a metabolic disorder where the excess body fat gets accumulated where it poses critical health threats to the body. Rather than obesity being a health issue in itself, apart from the difficulty in handling daily chores, it increases the plausibility of various other complications that can be termed perilous. Ayurveda classifies obesity as Medoroga. According to Ayurveda, obesity is a result of improper food habits and other lifestyle choices resulting in problems with digestive fire which in turn leads to an increment in Ama.
With an increase in Ama, it blocks other body tissue channels which leads to Vata imbalance. Obesity treatment in Ayurveda does not aim only at weight loss but adjusting the metabolic processes as well. It is achieved by bringing down Ama as well as the excessive fat present in the body. This is done to regulate Kapha functions causing a Vata imbalance. All these will be achieved by improving diet as well as physical activities along with managing stress factors. Ayurveda stress treatment is focused on helping the body relieve stress from the nervous system while helping the body relax in itself. Mardana and Udwarthanam, Abhyanga, and Vasthi are the most commonly performed treatments for Obesity in Ayurveda.
For managing lifestyle diseases, there are two objectives in Ayurveda: (i) maintaining the health of the healthy and (ii) provide appropriate treatment for the ones suffering from a disorder. Ayurveda being the science of healing, is not just limited to finding a cure for any disease but understanding the root cause and assist the body in self-healing. The role plays in modern times where stress and an unhealthy lifestyle diminishes a person’s pleasure and tenders him/her susceptive to various lifestyle diseases.
We can prevent lifestyle disorders through the Ayurveda regimen which include Dinacharya (Daily routine), Ritucharya, Panchakarma therapy and Rasayana therapy.
Panchakarma therapies like Vamana (medicated emesis), Virechana (Therapeutic purgation), Vasthy (Medicated enema) helps to detoxify the body from metabolic toxins and with proper lifestyle and regimens as per body type one can manage the lifestyle diseases with Ayurveda and Yoga.
To summarize, all Ayurvedic regimens aim to achieve balance. Maintaining Equilibrium is the key to living an Ayurveda lifestyle and not just treating any specific symptoms of a disease. Hence, when it comes to managing the disturbed symmetry of Doshas in the individual body and multi-dimensional disorders such as Lifestyle Diseases, Ayurveda approaches every aspect of life including the body, mind and spirit to sustain balance and health.
Duration: 2-3 weeks as per the condition of the patient and duration of diseases.