Tag Archives: Ashwagandha

Arthritis and home remedies


Arthritis is characterized by pain and inflammation in and around the joint. Arthritis may affect people of any age from child to old aged person. The most common symptom of arthritis are pain, tenderness and stiffness around one or multi joints giving result to reduced movement and function, inflammation, redness and muscle weakness of that particular joint. Following are few steps which reduces the pain and uneasiness caused by the disease and to prevent the disease:

  • Quit smoking as it lead to develop rheumatoid arthritis.
  • Do exercise daily, skipping exercise is can cause contractures in joints which aggravate all the symptoms of arthritis. So do not skip exercise.
  • The person who consume Omega-3 faces less swelling and stiffness of joints. Fresh fish e.g. Salmon, trout and mackerel are great source of Omega-3 fatty acid. For vegetarians there are other alternatives such as flax seeds, walnuts etc. Daily intake of one walnut soaked in water whole night and taken empty stomach is very helpful in production of synovial fluid in joints.
  • A diet rich in vitamin C is also beneficial in arthritis. Consume strawberries, cauliflower, oranges, kiwis, broccoli, and kidney beans in daily routine.

    Diagram of a synovial (diarthrosis) joint.
    Diagram of a synovial (diarthrosis) joint. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
  • Take lots of fruits and vegetables can help in improving osteoarthritis.
  • We should take low fat based diet.
  • Take fresh whole foods including all cereals, fruits, vegetables which supply all necessary antioxidants to our body
  • Ginger contains chemicals which are similar to the anti
    inflammatory medicines. We should use ginger in preparing tea, in our
    meals, as salads or by preparing cookies.
  • Turmeric is another home product which prevents arthritis. It should be taken in quantity of 1/3 tbsp to 1/2 tbsp or can be added with dry ginger powder
    and ashwgandha powder (wethania somnifera). Its dose will remain same as was of Turmeric. These both should be taken with leuke warm milk.
  • Aloe vera juice and amla juice (Indian gooseberry juice) is also very much helpful in curing arthritis. 30 ml of each should be taken before one hour of breakfast and dinner with leuke warm water.

Loss of sleep and Ayurveda


“INSOMNIA” is a common sleep disorder in our modern, fast paced & stressful life. It is a inability to obtain an adequate amount or quality of sleep. The difficulty can be in falling asleep, remaining asleep, or both. People with insomnia do not feel refreshed when they wake up, which affect their ability to function during the day. Insomnia can sap not only your energy level and mood but also your health, work performance and quality of life.

Symptoms of Inadequate sleep are day time fatigue, sleepiness, lowered energy levels, delayed reflexes, weak memory, lack of concentrate, confused state of mind, increased blood pressure, dark circles under eyes, dry skin, appearance of wrinkles on skin and hair loss.

Psychological conditions (anxiety, mental depression, stress etc.), Medications (steroids, diuretics, blood pressure medications etc.), excessive work, excessive consumption of tea or coffee, smoking, drinking alcohol, hunger or overeating before sleep, constipation, dyspepsia and menstruation (in female) are common causes of Insomnia.

According to Ayurveda, an improper diet and lifestyle causes aggravation of Vata dosha which travels through the channels of the head and cause insomnia or Anidra (Ayurvedic name). Ayurveda says, Prana Vata (sub-dosha of Vata dosha) makes the nervous system sensitive. When this sensitivity of nervous system coupled with an aggravated Prana Vata, it lead to “INSOMNIA”. Vata is aggravated by worries, anger, suppressed emotions, overwork, over-excitement, increased intake of tea and coffee especially before going to bed, long gaps between meals and intake of cold and dry food, etc. Sometimes as like Prana Vata, Tarpak Kapha and Sadhak Pitta may also responsible for Insomnia. Tarpak Kapha (sub-dosha of Kapha) nourishes the brain cells and facilitates a good night’s sleep. Imbalance of this dosha causes poor nourishment of brain cells, leading to Insomnia. Sadhak Pitta (sub-dosha of Pitta) is located in the heart. It controls emotions, desires, decisiveness, and spirituality. Its imbalance makes a person demanding and workaholic, thereby leading to situations that may cause sleeplessness.

The Ayurvedic treatment of Insomnia focuses on balancing the aggravated doshas through classical herbal medicines as well as customized diet and lifestyle plans.

Diet Recommend for Insomnia

  •  Low-salt diet
  • Calcium / Magnesium rich food, as they are natural sedatives like milk, almonds, peanuts, walnuts.
  • Vitamin B containing diet : Whole grain, cereals, pulses and green vegetables, fresh fruits and curd.
  • Avoid white-flour foods, sugar, tea, coffee, chocolate, alcohol, fatty foods, fried foods

Lifestyle Recommend for Insomnia

  • Avoid watching television or working on the computer late at night.
  • Prepare a sleep schedule. Go to sleep at the same time every night and wake up at a fixed time every morning.
  • If possible, take a hot bath or shower before bedtime.
  • Regular physical exercise.
  • Create a sleep environment in the room, avoid too much light and noise.

Massage (abhyanga)

Before going to bed, rub warm sesame oil on your scalp and the soles of your feet.

Ayurvedic Herbs Recommend for Insomnia

Ashwagandha (Withania somnifera)
Ashwagandha (Withania somnifera) (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Yoga Recommend for Insomnia

Meditation

Meditation at bedtime is a technique to soothe the stressed nerves. This powerful technique improves concentration and helps discard all the negative thoughts from the mind. Sleep is one of the supporting pillars of life. Along with diet, sleep is important for good health and well-being.

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Anxiety and ayurveda


Anxiety is the comprehensive term used for psychosomatic disorders which are characterized by excessive worrying, unnatural fears, excessive nervousness and uneasiness. Anxiety is becoming much common in younger age groups now a days, especially younger men and women from multi-national companies and other industrial groups.

Anxiety is involved in most of the diseases and works as a cause for all these diseases. So, if we have ability to control the anxiety, we can almost control most of the diseases. This is the basic thought through which we can achieve “Complete Health”.

The most common symptoms of anxiety are fast pulse, excess sweating, Heart palpitations, headache, INSOMNIA, restlessness, breathlessness, nervousness, imaginary fear, hyperactivity, difficulty in concentration, confusions and tendency to be irritable without an obvious cause.

According to “Ayurveda” Anxiety or manovaha strota vyadhi is caused as a result of vikriti of manovaha strota due to aggravation or vitiated Prana Vata, which weakens the Central Nervous System and triggers the psychological imbalance. It also affects the Neuro-Hormonal functions. The root causes for anxiety are improper diet and life style that leads the distressed state of mind causes the negative feelings.

Ayurveda recommends a holistic approach to manage and heal it through diet, classical herbal medicines and yoga along with meditation.
 
Diet Recommended for Anxiety:-

English: An anxious person
English: An anxious person (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
  •  Eat a healthy, whole foods diet with plenty of fresh vegetables and fruits. All fruits & vegetables have Magnesium, which is essential for managing the blood pressure and psychological health.
  • Keep away from processed foods and eat more natural products, these will lift your moods and calm anxiety.

Foods to avoid:

  • Fizzy drinks, Tea, Coffee, processed food, White bread, Chips, Pastry, Cakes, Caffeine, Sugar, Alcohol, Chocolate, Cheese, Fast Food.
  • Pickles, yoghurt and other acid forming foods are not good for you.
  • Minimize consumption of spices. Your food should be calming in nature not too much exciting.

Lifestyle Recommended for Anxiety:-

  • Good sleep:. A proper sleep relaxes both body and the mind. It improves your mood and recovers the ability of mind to deal with daily stress.
  • Take a break from routine work and spend some time with your friends and relatives. It works as a great anxiety barrier.
  • Listen calm music: Listening calm music decrease blood pressure, heart rate, and anxiety levels.

Ayurvedic Herbs Recommended for Anxiety:

               are examples of herbs which are effectively used in Classical Ayurvedic Medicines or as home remedy in anxiety.

Yoga Recommended for Anxiety:

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Ashwgandha “the real power”


Ashwagandha, one of the most vital herbs in Ayurvedic healing, has been used since ancient times for a wide variety of conditions, but is

Ashwagandha
Ashwagandha (Photo credit: Hari Prasad Nadig)

most well known for its restorative benefits. In Sanskrit ashwagandha means “the smell of a horse,” indicating that the herb imparts the vigor and strength of a stallion, and it has traditionally been prescribed to help people strengthen their immune system after an illness. In fact, it’s frequently referred to as “Indian ginseng” because of its rejuvenating properties (although botanically, ginseng and ashwagandha are unrelated). In addition, ashwagandha is also used to enhance sexual potency for both men and women.

Belonging to the same family as the tomato, ashwagandha (or Withania somnifera in Latin) is a plump shrub with oval leaves and yellow flowers. It bears red fruit about the size of a raisin. The herb is native to the dry regions of India, northern Africa, and the Middle East, but today is also grown in more mild climates, including in the United States.
Scientific Research
Ashwagandha contains many useful medicinal chemicals, including withanolides, (steroidal lactones), alkaloids, choline, fatty acids, amino acids, and a variety of sugars. While the leaves and fruit have valuable therapeutic properties, the root of the ashwagandha plant is the part most commonly used in Western herbal remedies.
Medical researchers have been studying ashwagandha with great interest and as of this date have carried out 216 studies of its healing benefits, summarized below:
• confers immune system protection
• combats the effects of stress
• improves learning, memory, and reaction time
• reduces anxiety and depression without causing drowsiness
• stabilizes blood sugar
• lowers cholesterol
• reduces brain-cell degeneration
• contains anti-malarial properties
• offers anti-inflammatory benefits
Some studies have also found that ashwagandha inhibits the growth of cancer cells in in human beings.