Lifestyle diseases are defined as diseases linked with the way people live their life. This is commonly caused by alcohol, drug and smoking abuse as well as lack of physical activity and unhealthy eating. Diseases that impact on our lifestyle are heart disease, stroke, obesity and type II diabetes.The diseases that appear to increase in frequency as countries become more industrialized and people live longer. They can include Alzheimer's disease, arthritis, atherosclerosis, asthma, cancer, chronic liver disease or cirrhosis, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, type 2 diabetes, heart disease, metabolic syndrome, chronic renal failure, osteoporosis, stroke, depression, and obesity. In the U.K the death rate is four times higher from respiratory disease caused by an unhealthy lifestyle.
What you can expect:
The incidence of lifestyle diseases like hypertension, diabetes mellitus, dyslipidemia, and overweight/obesity associated with cardiovascular diseases is high on the rise. Cardio vascular disorders continue to be the major cause of mortality representing about 30% of all deaths worldwide. With rapid economic development and increasing westernization of lifestyle in the past few decades, prevalence of these diseases has reached alarming proportions among Indians in the recent years. As Ayurveda is recognized as foremost life science and describes ways to prevent and manage lifestyle disorders, the world is being attracted towards its potential. Ayurveda provides better solution in the forms of proper dietary management, lifestyle advises, Panchakarma like detoxification and bio-purification procedures, medicaments, and rejuvenation therapies. The holistic approach of Ayurveda, treating the patient as a whole, meaning intervention targeted toward complete physical, psychological, and spiritual well-being makes this science a wonderful option in lifestyle disorders.
Basically, a particular lifestyle of person is a cumulative product of his/her physical capacity co-ordinated with psychological functioning, displayed in the form of habits, behavior, dietary and living pattern based on his own training sought from childhood, and mimicries he gained from his immediate companions including parents, siblings, peers, etc. Thus, it involves a pure psychological and innate control over the physical and sensory activities. When this initiation, control, and co-ordination are disturbed, it leads to the derangement of lifestyle and results in any lifestyle disorder. Ayurveda narrated this phenomenon as ‘Prajnaparadha’ (intellectual blasphemy) which is one of the three basic causes of any disease. There are ample improper actions as an impact of Prajnaparadha which are root causes of various diseases, e.g., habit of suppression of any natural urge is a result of Prajnaparadha and enlisted as a cause of nearly 50% of the diseases. Reversal of any neurotransmission or improper removal of the waste products formed during metabolism leading to accumulation of toxins is the basic cause of a disease. Therefore, the habit of suppression of urge in improper lifestyle can be considered as one of the root causes of lifestyle diseases. Removal of these accumulated waste products is the first line of treatment as described in Ayurveda by Charaka as well as in Naturopathy by Hippocrates, Henry Lindlarh, and Mahatma Gandhi.
In the management of lifestyle diseases, Ayurveda offers various regimens including Dinacharya (daily regimen), Ritucharya (seasonal regimen), Panchakarma (five detoxification and bio-purification therapies), and Rasayana (rejuvenation) therapies. The Sadvritta (ideal routines) and Aachara Rasayana (code of conduct) are utmost important to maintain a healthy and happy psychological perspective. The inclusive utilization of all these treatment modalities has a great effect on lifestyle disorders. Moreover, the application of organ-specific Rasayana herbs also provides enough scope not only for prevention of disease, but also for the promotion of health and cure of disease too. Cardio-vascular disorders are discussed under Hridroga in Ayurveda. Hridaya has been referred to be the site of psyche. Any kind of psychological disturbance will lead to a disturbed patho-physiology of heart. Hence, it has been told to protect the heart from every kind of stressor (Pariharya Visheshena Manaso Dukkhahetavah). On the contrary, conventional western medicine deals with the cardio-vascular disorder with single side of somatic disorder. Hence, Ayurveda has an upper edge in treating the disease with emphasis on its root cause. The Ayurvedic physician concentrates on achieving the objective of Ayurveda for promotion of health, prevention and management of disease for a healthy and happy life in the ailing society.