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Article writing contest for month of October 2017

 

Dear Student,

Topics for article writing contest –

You have the liberty of choosing any one of the topics from the list as mentioned below:

1. Dos and Don’ts in Sharad Ritu

OR

2. Importance of Nutrition in Diabetes

OR

3. Dos and Don’ts during Menstruation: Ayurvedic viewpoint

OR

4. Nobel prize for Medicine – Circadian Rhythm: Ayurveda unraveled

 

  1. Rewards for participating in the Article Writing Competition: This month the cash rewards will be for 5 winners
    • 1st prize winner will receive a cash prize of Rs. 4000/-
    • 2nd & 3rd prize winners will receive a cash prize of Rs. 3000/- each and
    • 4th and the 5th prize winner will receive a cash prize of Rs. 1500/- each

    This competition offers a chance to the students have their writing skills reviewed by Charak’s senior editor and the award-winning article will be published in Charak Times, a quarterly newsletter, circulated across all the Ayurvedic colleges, senior practitioners, and consultants. The content will also be uploaded on the student site and even on the blog page of Charak Pharma website.

    We urge and request you to continue participating in Charak students’ online activities.

     

    Terms and conditions of participating in the “Article Writing Contest”

    1. Register on student.charak.com if not registered
    2. Post your article at “drcharak@charak.com”
    3. The article must consist of the contents and style as mentioned below:
    • Article should be in blog format
    • Word count – minimum 500 and maximum 800
    • Content should be relevant to the topic selected
    • The content must be in English
    • The article must in “Word doc”
    • The article should be original work and not a plagiarism
    • Research articles will not be considered as Articles

     

    Tips on writing the article:

    1. For this contest, we are looking for health-related articles based on the topics suggested. Writers have to express his/her ideas and expertise on the subject. The article should be original work and not a copy paste. The article should be in simple, easy to understand language for common people.
    2. The article must begin with an intro paragraph with definition, statistics, prevalence, facts, focus and attention-grabbing points. (approx. 200 words)
    3. The next paragraph (section) must elaborately include findings, causes, risk factors and the core reason of the relevant condition/title of the topic/indication
    4. The third section must include current treatment options for the given condition/title of the topic/indication
    5. In the final section, enlist/mention the useful herbs and minerals for the management of the given condition/title of the topic/indication.
    6. Finally, conclude with your opinion, analysis, and comments on the topic.

     

    Before sending the article please proofread your article.
    Submission of the articles – The last date for submitting the article is 15th November 2017.  Please submit your article at drcharak@charak.com.

Award Winning Contest

Nobel Prize for Medicine – Circadian Rhythm – Ayurveda Unraveled

Nobel Prize for Medicine – Circadian Rhythm – Ayurveda Unraveled

Author: Dr. Gayatri M. Joshi,

M.D. (Kayachikitsa)

 

Life is a cycle of darkness & light

After every sorrow, there is a delight

Just keep going & don’t loose your sight

As there is always a day after every night

 

Really, life keeps on changing, every day, every moment. These changes are not only physical, but psychological, emotional & behavioral as well. They follow a daily cycle. In the field of medical science these changes are known as Circadian Rhythm. They are found in most living things including human beings. These rhythms respond primarily to light & temperature. The sleep–wake cycle we experience every day is the most evident of these 24 hours rhythms in humans. In simple words, circadian rhythm is the body clock that tells our bodies, when to sleep, rise, eat etc. regulating many physiological processes, like endocrine,cardiac,pulmonary, renal,thermoregulatory,gestrointenstinal & neurobehavioral functions.

The Hypothalamus of the brain is the chief controller and the central neural pacemaker of these rhythms. A part of it –The Suprachiasmatic Nucli (SCN) plays an important part in this. As light is the most important cue for these rhythms, The Retina of the eye is another important organ regulating circadian rhythms. Its rods & cones (Specilalised photoreceptors) form a special path with the hypothalamus, called the Retinohypothalamic pathway. Together with the nervous system & hormones, these two regulate the circadian rhythms. Some researchers feel that every cell in the body helps regulating these rhythms.

 

Misalignment in these circadian rhythms can be seen in those whose daily sleep – wake cycle is disturbed due to night shift work, jet lag etc. If this becomes chronic, these people suffer from Insomnia, disturbed sleep, irritation, lack of concentration, hormonal imbalances & many more physical & psychological complications. In short, life goes haywire. The treatment suggested is to regulate the sleep–wake time, to use Melatonin (light sensitive – sleep wake regulating hormone) etc. but most importantly to adapt healthy life style. In today’s fast paced life, a mild to severe form of disrupted circadian rhythms can be seen in many patients. The question is– Is there any solution? If yes, what is it & where is it?

Fortunately our age old Indian Medical Science, Ayurveda is gold and proving its worth. Let’s see how. In every Ayurvedic samhita, an important topic is discussed with the name of “Dincharya” Din = Day, Charya = routine to be followed. So, Dinacharya is a routine to be followed everyday. If we understand it carefully we get simply amazed to know how our Ayurvedacharya had described the daily activities to regulate the circadian rhythms.

  • Brahmemuhurte Uttishthet : The foremost importance is given to Brahmemuhurte Uttishthet….” to wake up at least 1.5 hours before sunrise (around 5:00am) This is extremely important as this starts regulating the circadian rhythm. (We have already seen that the sleep wake cycle is the most evident of this 24 hours rhythm) Body temperature is the lowest at this time & gradually rises as the morning progresses, along with alertness & cognitive ability. Waking up early morning jump starts these activities.

 

  • Anjan-Netranjan: Eye care – An interesting thing to note about Charakokta Dincharya is – He has mentioned Anjan-Netranjan as the first thing to do after waking up in the morning, The reason can be 1) The first thing we do while waking up, is to open our eyes. 2) The retina of the eye helps regulating the circadian rhythms, so eye care is given the utmost importance.

 

  • Dhoompan: Works on Urdhwajatru supraclavicular part.This is a process of inhalation of herbal smoke through nostrils so it helps in balancing vitiated Vata & Kapha dosha in supraclavicular part, like head, nose, ears & eyes. So it also stimulates the hypothalamus & the retina controlling the circadian Rhythms.

 

  • Nasya (nasya):Administration of medicine through nose.

Nasa (naasaa) – Nose is described as the gateway to the shiras (- one of the three marma) Nasya woks on the Shirngataka marma (a sira marma) stimulating olfactory nerves. These nerves are connected to the higher centers of the brain including the hypothalamus, which controls the circadian rhythms. This in turn regulates autonomic nervous system, hormone synthesis, emotional & behavioral patterns, body temperature & states of consciousness. Very rightly, nasya is included in Dincharya.

 

  • Abhyanga: Body massage with oil

This stimulates minute nerve endings in the skin. This works on endocrine system regulating all the body functions through hormones including circadian rhythms (We have already seen that every cells in the body helps regulating these rhythms)

Abhyanga helps to improve-

  • Dopamine – The happy hormone.
  • Serotinin – The calming hormone.
  • Endorphins- Body’s pain reliever.
  • Cortisol – Flight or fight hormone

Abhyanga also includes Moordhanitel (Head massage), Karnpooran, and Padabhyanga as well.

So it is very rightly said “ Abhyangam aachret nityam”

 

  • Vyayam: Daily Exercise

The circadian rhythms get disrupted with age & in neurodegenerative diseases resulting in various sleep disorders, but daily exercise seems to keep the hypothalamus in a healthy state. This can help in preventing many age related sleep disorders like insomnia & neurodegenerative disease like Alzheimer.

 

  • Snan: taking a bath & Udwartan massaging scented powders on the skin.

Ayurveda has suggested warm/cold water bath according to the climatic conditions (Rutu). It can be said that along with light, temperature is another cue regulating the circadian rhythms. So this daily bath with warm/cold water may be helpful in maintaining core body temperature which in turns regulates circadian rhythms.Udawartan may also be helping in it working on nerve endings in the skin & giving soothing effect to the body as well as mind.

 

Dincharya also includes – Dantdhawan, Jivhanirlekhabn Gandushdharan. It also describes as well. All this is to keep the person in a balanced state,Physically, psychologically & spiritually. Hats off to our Ayurvedacharya for beautifully blending our daily life with the rhythms in the Nature. In the form of Dinacharya, Ayurveda has gifted the Noble prize to the field of medicine, as understanding & following Dincharya can help the person to prevent many diseases & to remain in a state of Tridoshsamya He can remain healthy-Swastha  as described by Sushrutacharya.

So to keep our daily life cycle in a balanced state, we must follow the age old saying:-

Early to bed & early to rise makes man healthy, wealthy & wise

Importance of Nutrition in Diabetes

Importance of Nutrition in Diabetes

Author- Dr. Rashmi Tokas Rana,

PG Scholar ( Kayachikitsa),

All India Institute of Ayurveda (AIIA)

Diabetes is emerging as “silent killer” in the present scenario and India has been declared as the diabetic capital of the world. According to the recent Lancet study, there has been four fold rise in the patients with diabetes since 1980 to 2014.Taking all these things into considerations, it is the most burning health related issue. Apart from the medicinal treatment, Medical nutrition therapy is an integral component of diabetes management and of diabetes self-management education. There is miraculous effect of the nutrition therapy which includes proper diet and exercise. Diabetes is a metabolic disorder that can be only prevented and managed by lifestyle and dietary modifications.

Goals of medical nutrition therapy that apply to all persons with diabetes are as follows:

  1. Attain and maintain optimal metabolic outcomes including
    • Blood glucose levels in the normal range or as close to normal as is safely possible to prevent or reduce the risk for complications of diabetes.
    • A lipid and lipoprotein profile that reduces the risk for macrovascular disease.
    • Blood pressure levels that reduce the risk for vascular disease.
  2. Prevent and treat the chronic complications of diabetes. Modify nutrient intake and lifestyle as appropriate for the prevention and treatment of obesity, dyslipidemia, cardiovascular disease, hypertension, and nephropathy.
  3. Improve health through healthy food choices and physical activity.
  4. Address individual nutritional needs taking into consideration personal and cultural preferences and lifestyle while respecting the individual’s wishes and willingness to change[i].

Foods containing carbohydrate from whole grains, fruits, vegetables, and low-fat milk should be included in a healthy diet. With regard to the glycemic effects of carbohydrates, the total amount of carbohydrate in meals or snacks is more important than the source or type. The primary dietary fat goal in persons with diabetes is to limit saturated fat and dietary cholesterol intake.

 

In ayurveda, the therapy emphasizes on preventive (swasthasya swasthya rakshanam) and curative (aaturasya vikara prashamanam cha) aspects;with its unique concept of pathyas(do’s) and apathyas(don’ts). According to ayurveda, diabetics are of two types: obese (sthula pramehi) and lean (krisha pramehi).The nutrition for the former should include weight loss regime and for latter it should be weight gaining regime (santarpana). Because of the effects of obesity on insulin resistance, weight loss is an important therapeutic objective for persons with type 2 diabetes. Short-term studies have demonstrated that weight loss in subjects with type 2 diabetes is associated with decreased insulin resistance, improved measures of glycemia and dyslipidemia, and reduced blood pressure. Therefore, the emphasis of nutrition therapy for type 2 diabetes is on lifestyle strategies to reduce glycemia, dyslipidemia, and blood pressure. These strategies should be implemented as soon as the diagnosis of diabetes is made.

The diet should be a balanced one rather than just low sugar/calorie diet as the hypoglycaemia is a major complication of diabetes. Apart from the anti-diabetic herbs, the method of preparation plays a key role in bringing out a balanced dietary meal.

Here are few of the principles mentioned in the classical texts and different recipes which can prove to be very beneficial to diabetics:[ii]

Barley (yava) should be the principle food of choice.

“Yavaudana” can beprepared by boiling dried and crushed barley grains and removing the excess of water.

“Vatya” (barley porridge) can be prepared when the dehusked and crushed barley grains are boiled and excess water is retained in the preparation.

“Saktu” (roasted corn) and “Apupa” (pan cakes) prepared from barley and corn) mixed with meat soup of gallinaceous and pecker birds and animals inhabiting arid land.

Manthas (flour of different types of corn mixed with water)

Kashayas (decoctions) prepared from various herbs and vegetables

Old shali rice cooked and mixed with soup of mudga and

Preparations of bitter vegetables (tikta dravya)

Cooked shashtika rice and trinadhanya mixed with the oil of lentil,ingudi,atasiand sarshapa.

Medicated beverages of different flavours can be made: sarodaka,kushodka,madhoodaka,thriphala udak seedhu madhvik.

Ahara should be balya and ojovardhak but not kapha vardhak.

Conclusion: Because many persons with type 2 diabetes are overweight and insulin resistant, medical nutrition therapy should emphasize lifestyle changes (people should follow proper dincharya,ratricharya and ritucharya) that result in reduced energy intake and increased energy expenditure through physical activity(vyayama and yoga). Increased physical activity can lead to improved glycemia, decreased insulin resistance, and reduced cardiovascular risk factors. Division of food intake, three meals or smaller meals and snacks, should be based on individual preferences. Because the beauty of ayurveda lies in its own unique principle of individuality (purusham purusham veekshya).

Nobel Prize for Medicine- Circadian Rhythm- A Practical Ayurvedic Approach

Nobel Prize for Medicine- Circadian Rhythm- A Practical Ayurvedic Approach

Author-

Dr. Pritam C. Vaity

M.D.

Dept. of  Rasashastra and Bhaishajya Kalpana, YMT Ayurved PG institute, Kharghar, Navi Mumbai.

Have you made a daily schedule? Were you unable to follow it? Is lack of will-power the only cause behind this?  Or you might have simply overlooked a dictum while making this schedule.

The dictum that I mentioned above is actually based on the concept which was given in our very own Ayurveda literature thousands of years back, on which the modern scientists had been working since many decades and which has won The Nobel Prize in Physiology and Medicine 2017 (awarded to Hall, Rosbash and Young). You guessed it right. It’s ‘The Circadian Rhythm.’

Circadian Rhythm

In order to implement this concept in our schedule designing, we first need to see what it means. A Circadian rhythm is a biological process going on within our body over the span of an entire day (24hours) and every single day.  Which means our body is programmed to do certain functions throughout the day without any kind of external stimulus.  The laureates received ‘The Nobel Prize’ for discovering the molecular mechanisms going on within us which control this Circadian Rhythm.  However, even though this rhythm is within our body, it can be adjusted (entrained) by certain external cues like the environment, light, temperature etc.

Ayurveda Perspective

The concept of Circadian Rhythm in Ayurveda is based on three doshas: Vata, Pitta and Kapha. Apart from representing an individual’s physical as well as mental constitution (prakruti), they actually participate as stimulating and regulating forces or energies in the functioning of the body. Vata represents movement, Pitta represents transformation and Kapha represents stability. However it is noteworthy that these internal forces vary with age, time and space etc.  On different occasions one among these three is dominant than the others. According to Ayurveda, their dominance over the course of 24 hours is as follows-

Day

  1. 6am to 10am – Kapha dominance
  2. 10am to 2pm – Pitta dominance
  3. 2pm to 6pm- Vata dominance

Evening and Night

  1. 6pm to 10pm – Kapha dominance
  2. 10pm to 2am- Pitta dominance
  3. 2am to 6am- Vata dominance

We had discussed previously that vata represents movement which explains a fact that you might have observed. It is comparatively easier to start an activity if you wake up at 4am. However if you wake up after 6am, you feel lousy and even think of going to bed for another 10mins. It is because at 4am, within your body the vata energy (which represents movement) is dominant whereas at 6am the kapha energy (which represents stability) is dominant. During the pitta dominant hours the body’s ability to bring about transformation is at its peak. Thus food taken during these hours during day time is very well digested. The dominance of these doshas in the evening and at night time however is a bit different compared to that experienced during the day time. During day time, it is absolute dominance but as the sun begins to set, the dominance is no longer absolute, but becomes relative. As the sun begins to set, our body goes into resting phase and the doshic dominance regulates slowly internally and not exhibited loud and clear as it does during the day time.  In the second half, even in the kapha dominant hours you don’t feel extremely lousy but you love to sit with your family and friends as kapha facilitates bonding. The digestive fire is also not so intense in this pitta dominant phase. The transformation energy of pitta is utilized to repair the wear and tear that occurred during the day. Similarly vata’s ability to bring about movements is exploited at molecular level inside your body even when you are asleep, facilitating the supply of useful substances to where they are needed and carrying away the waste substances towards the disposal department in your body. But as we approach the dawn, this silent vata becomes vibrant and your day begins.

 

Guidelines to make a daily schedule which will be coherent with the biological clock within you

1 6am to 10am Exercise -reduces the kapha and makes you active

Avoid eating a lot as digestion is slowest. Eating a lot at early morning will put on weight.

2 10am to 2pm Take heavy meals. The ability of the body to digest is at its peak during these hours.

 

3 2pm to 6pm Mind is also more creative during these hours. Schedule the projects that require a lot of mental effort
4 6pm to 10pm

 

 

Spend time with family and friends. Get social.

Take a light dinner preferably before sunset or at least up to 8pm

5 10pm to 2am Take sleep. Avoid screens (cell phones, laptop etc.)

 

6 2am to  6am Take sleep

Get up before sunrise and meditate

 

It’s true that the will does find the way to success. However a strong will channelized on the right way (circadian) will not only give success but also joy and health. After all a famous quote says that “Speed is meaningful only if you are heading in the right direction.”