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Hypertension and kidney health: How Ayurveda can help manage the same

2023-10-27 00:00:00



NEW DELHI: Hypertension, commonly known as high blood pressure, is a significant risk factor for kidney health as the kidneys play a crucial role in regulating blood pressure, so when hypertension goes unchecked, it can lead to kidney damage. Ayurvedic experts insist that Ayurveda approaches the management of hypertension and kidney health with a holistic perspective, focusing on balance and natural remedies. In an interview with HT Lifestyle, Dr Arun Pillai, Wellness Director at Dharana, shared, In Ayurveda, the human body is perceived as an intricate interplay of energies known as doshas, with Vata, Pitta, and Kapha being the primary ones. In the context of hypertension and kidney health, Ayurvedic practitioners frequently observe an excessive Pitta dosha imbalance. Pitta is closely linked to heat and transformative processes within the body. When there s an excess of Pitta, it can lead to inflammation and place added stress on the kidneys, which can contribute to the development or exacerbation of hypertension. He explained, One of the fundamental principles in Ayurveda for managing hypertension is through diet and lifestyle modifications. We emphasise the importance of a balanced diet that includes cooling and soothing foods to pacify the Pitta dosha.

This might include incorporating foods like cucumber, watermelon, and coconut water into one s diet while reducing or avoiding spicy and salty foods that can aggravate hypertension. Herbal remedies also play a crucial role in Ayurvedic management of hypertension and kidney health. Herbs like Brahmi, Arjuna, and Gokshura have been traditionally used to lower blood pressure, reduce inflammation and support kidney function. These herbs can be prepared in various forms, such as teas or capsules, under the guidance of an Ayurvedic practitioner. Dr Arun Pillai elaborated, Another essential aspect of Ayurveda is stress management. Chronic stress is a common trigger for hypertension and can adversely affect kidney health. Ayurveda recommends practices like yoga, meditation, and deep breathing exercises to calm the mind and reduce stress levels. At Dharana, we offer specialised wellness programs that incorporate these practices to help guests manage their hypertension and support kidney health. Detoxification is another critical component of Ayurvedic treatment for hypertension and kidney health. Panchakarma, a purification therapy, is often recommended to remove toxins from the body and improve overall well being. It can aid in reducing the burden on the kidneys and promote their optimal function. Ayurveda is a personalised system of medicine.

A qualified Ayurvedic practitioner will assess an individual s unique constitution, imbalances, and specific health concerns to tailor a treatment plan accordingly. This personalised approach ensures that the treatment aligns with the individual s needs and helps manage hypertension while supporting kidney health effectively. Dr Amit Verma, Founder of Vrikshakalpa Ayurveda, said, Millions of individuals throughout the world are afflicted by hypertension, also referred to as high blood pressure. It poses a significant risk for a variety of cardiovascular conditions, such as heart attacks and strokes. Furthermore, hypertension may worsen kidney health and increase the risk of kidney failure or chronic kidney disease CKD . Ayurveda offers holistic approaches to managing both hypertension and kidney health. He highlighted the ways in which hypertension can impact kidney health Reduced Blood Flow: High blood pressure can narrow and weaken the blood vessels in the kidneys, leading to reduced blood flow to these vital organs. This reduced blood flow can impair the kidneys ability to filter waste and maintain proper fluid balance in the body. Proteinuria: Hypertension can damage the tiny blood vessels in the kidneys, leading to a condition called proteinuria.

In proteinuria, excessive amounts of protein leak into the urine, which is a sign of kidney damage. Chronic Kidney Disease CKD : Prolonged uncontrolled hypertension can ultimately lead to chronic kidney disease CKD . CKD is a progressive condition that impairs kidney function over time and can result in kidney failure if left untreated. Dr Amit Verma echoed that Ayurveda offers a comprehensive approach to managing hypertension and promoting kidney health. According to him, the key principles and Ayurvedic remedies include Diet and Lifestyle: Ayurveda emphasises a balanced diet and a healthy lifestyle. Reducing the intake of salty and processed foods is essential for managing hypertension. Instead, focus on a diet rich in fresh fruits, vegetables, and whole grains. Incorporate stress management techniques such as meditation and yoga to help reduce the emotional and mental stress that can contribute to hypertension. Herbal Remedies: Ayurveda utilizes a wide range of herbs to support kidney health and reduce hypertension. Commonly used herbs include Punarnava, Gokshura, and Arjuna. These herbs are known for their diuretic and blood pressure lowering properties.

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