The world is changing rapidly, it’s the era of clicks, likes, and shares. The advances in technology and social media have taken us to new heights. Food is just a click away, and so is the cab, gadgets, dresses, and whatnot? It has made our lives extremely easy and sophisticated.
But alas! The repercussions are manifold. We have all become couch potatoes. So lazy and lethargic that we don’t even care about what we eat or do. And this has bought us a whole lot of lifestyle disorders.
Obesity and diabetes have become ordinary terms. Nowadays people are surprised when someone above 50 years does not have diabetes.
Now, let’s see how Ayurveda defines, classifies, and manages diabetes.
According to Ayurveda, Prameha is a term that refers to a condition in which the body excretes more urine than usual (both in quantity and quality). It is a set of urinary disorders related to other systems like gastrointestinal, lymphatic, circulatory, endocrine, etc.
Prameha is broadly classified into Vataja Prameha, Pittaja Prameha, and Kaphaja Prameha. This is how Prameha is related to Diabetes Mellitus.
It is also classified according to the person’s build as Sahaja Prameha and Apathyanimittaja Prameha.
Symptoms Indicative of Prameha
Ayurveda mentions a few symptoms that might be indicative of Prameha. If these symptoms are ignored, it gets mature and transformed into symptoms of Diabetes Mellitus.
The symptoms of Prameha are:
- Sweetness in mouth
- Numbness and burning sensation of hands and feet
- Increased Thirst
- Dryness of mouth and throat
- Flies or ants accumulate in the urine of the person
- Foul smell or smell of raw meat from the body
- Obesity and flabbiness
When Kapha and Pitta get deteriorate in quality and quantity compared to Vata, the Vata dosha gets aggravated and pulls the dhatus (tissues), majja (bone marrow), oja (the essence of all tissues), and lasika (lymph) into the urinary bladder. According to this Vataja Prameha is divided into 4 types.
Vataja Prameha indicates a complicated stage. There is tissue destruction or depletion, depleting immunity, and multiple organ failure. This ultimately leads to Madhumeha (the end stages of Diabetes Mellitus).
- Sedentary Lifestyle
- Curd consumption
- Excess intake of Meat
- Having too much Milk and its forms
- Overindulgence in Junk foods
- Alcohol consumption
Features and Symptoms of Vataja Prameha
Due to the above factors, Kapha dosha is aggravated and they affect the medas (fat), mamas (flesh), udaka (lymphatic system), etc. Due to abnormal digestion, the affected dhatus are moved towards the urinary system, and the prameha happens.
Repeated urination in which urine is mixed with fatty oil and appears as turbid and sticky.
Frequent urination and urine appearance are similar to bone marrow.
Urine is excreted like an intoxicated elephant. Few cases of lymph with clots have also been found.
Urine with honey-like, astringent mixed sweet taste, pale color, and unctuousness.
- Severe Hyperglycemia with Glycosuria: The blood sugar levels increase in the body and there will be increased excretion of glucose in urine.
- Cachexia: Loss of body weight and muscle mass, and weakness
- Nephropathy: Over time, poorly controlled diabetes can cause damage to blood vessel clusters in the kidneys. This can lead to kidney damage.
- Neuropathy: High blood sugar levels can injure nerves throughout the body which causes numbness and tingling sensations.
- Retinopathy: Increased blood sugar levels damage the back of the eye (retina). It can cause blindness if left undiagnosed and untreated.
- Cardio-Respiratory Complication: People with diabetes are also more likely to have heart failure and lung complications.
- Gangrene: High blood sugar levels can damage the nerves, particularly those in the feet, which can make it easy to injure without realizing it. It also damages the blood vessels, restricting the blood supply to the feet.
Ayurveda has a different approach when it comes to the management of diabetes. The treatment is an amalgamation of medicines, herbs, and physical treatments.
The treatment includes various combinations of polyherbal, herbo-mineral, decoction & disease-specific medicated ghee, oil, diet, lifestyle practices, and panchakarma treatment.
- Have warm food
- Take foods that are light and ignite the digestive fire. Heavy foods like sugar and oils diminish the digestive fire, so avoid that.
- Don’t forget to include barley in your diet.
- Include turmeric, coriander, cumin, garlic, fenugreek, and cinnamon in your diet.
- Avoid sedentary lifestyle
- Start exercising regularly like walking, jogging, or indulge in sports
- Practice yoga and meditation
The stages of diabetes differ from a person to person. Therefore, the treatment approach also differs and it is done in a stepped manner.