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Although this disorder has been present among people since the inception of mankind, the rate of increase among the number of patients in recent years is alarming to say the least. The primary culprits are lifestyle issues such as bad diet, lack of physical exercise and stress. However, some people are genetically predisposed to it as well. Diabetes is a silent killer as complications caused by it are one of the largest killers on the planet.
The Ayurvedic route
Ayurveda has a long history of successfully dealing with this scourge dating back thousands of years. Diabetes is known as ‘Madhumeha’ and is often classified as ‘Maharoga’ as it causes multiple complications. The Ayurvedic route has many facets such as exercises, filtering toxins and balancing the ‘doshas’ through diet and herbs to control the effects of diabetes. Let’s look at some of the remedies for controlling and correcting symptoms of diabetes in Ayurveda.
- Diet: This is one of the most important changes that you need to make in your life to control symptoms of diabetes. Certain food types are an absolute no-no in Ayurveda if you have diabetes while certain other types of food are encouraged as they help keep it in control.
- Food types encouraged in Ayurveda: Amla, bitter gourd, fenugreek seeds (methi), spinach, jamun, drumsticks, garlic, turmeric, snake gourd, barley, wheat, tulsi, pepper, soya bean, cucumber and bel (Indian Bael) among others
- Food types discouraged in Ayurveda: Processed sugar or any food that contains a high amount of it, unrefined sugar in large quantities, sugar cane juice, oil, jaggery, ghee, cakes, alcohol, foods rich in carbohydrates such as rice or rotis in excess quantities, curd, junk and oily foods, butter, cold drinks and sweets among others
- Home Remedies and herbs: Ayurveda prescribes many forms of juices and concoctions which can be easily prepared at home to control blood sugar levels and also limit the symptoms. Some of the herbs and preparations used in the treatment of diabetes are mentioned below.
- Bitter gourd juice or Karela taken early in the morning
- A mixture of aloe vera gel and ground bay leaf (tez patta)
- Banyan tree bark prepared in boiled water
- Cinnamon powder boiled in water
- Neem, turmeric and tulsi preparations
- Yoga and exercises: Exercising and ensuring that the metabolism is kept active to check blood sugar levels is of utmost importance when you are diabetic. Yoga is one of the best methods to accomplish this. In general, light walking is prescribed but there are certain yoga poses which are especially beneficial for diabetes. Some of these are:
- Shalabhasana or the locust pose
- Ardha matsyendrasana or the half spinal twist pose
- Peacock pose or Mayurasana
- Katichakrasana or the waist rotating pose
- Naddishuddhi Pranayama
- Surya namaskar among others
However, it is important that you are proficient in the easier forms of yoga first and then have proper instruction before you try the harder poses.