Ayurvedic treatment for hypertension

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Hypertension or high BP is the force or pressure exerted by blood against the wall of the arteries. Blood Pressure (BP) is generally recorded as Systolic pressure (as the heart beats) and Diastolic pressure (as the heart relaxes between beats).
(Normal BP is less than 120 mmHg Systolic and less than 80 mmHg Diastolic)

When the level of pressure stays high, 140/90 or higher, it is considered as high BP or hypertension. With high BP our heart works harder and ultimately there are chances of heart attack, stroke, kidney failure and eye damage.

According to Ayurveda, blood pressure is also known as (Rakta chappa vridhi). Hypertension involves doshas (i.e. Vata, Pitta and Kapha), heart and blood vessels. But mainly, hypertension is due to the imbalance of Vyana Vayu and Pitta.

The main cause of hypertension is improper lifestyle but there are other factors involved as well.

These are divided in two categories:
Primary: Aging, family history, lack of exercise, smoking, drinking of alcohol and stress
Secondary: Kidney disease, diabetes, painkillers such as NSAIDS, hormonal condition like Cushing syndrome, oral contraceptive pills, pregnancy.

Preventive measures

We can prevent high blood pressure by:
* Adopting a healthy lifestyle
* Adopting a healthy diet plan
* Regular exercise, yoga, meditation
* Avoiding smoking and drinking

How to cure
Ayurvedic treatment is based on bringing imbalances back to normal with the help of proper nutrition, Panchakarma, yoga, and medicine.

Panchakarma therapy is the oldest and most effective method to cure hypertension. There are various panchakarma centres performing therapies which are affordable. Shirodhara is one of the effective ways to cure hypertension. This not only cures hypertension but also purifies and detoxifies the body and is used to manage physical and mental exertion, and fatigue.

There are various exercises – yogasanas and postures – which are effective in treating hypertension:

* Ardha Matsyendrasana or Half spinal twist
* Sukhasan
* Baddhakonasan
* Virasan
* Upavista
* Bidalasana
* Pavanmuktasana
* Surya namaskar

Home remedies
There are some home remedies effective to reduce hypertension such as
1) Chew one clove of garlic every morning
2) Eat a mix of 1 tbsp honey, 1 tbsp ginger juice and 1 tbsp cumin powder twice a day
3) Take 1-2 tbsp of amla juice with honey early in the morning
4) Drink at least 8 glasses of water a day

Consult an Ayurvedic doctor if condition worsens or does not change.

Source: Dr. Bhawna Agarwal, Consultant (Ayurveda, Panchakarma & Yoga) Ishtayu Ayurveda Wellness Centre, Faridabad, HR

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