Fight with Cholesterol the Ayurvedic Way!
Are you feeling winded, short of breath and often feeling fatigued out? Then you probably need to check your Cholesterol level. IT is a type of fat found in the blood. Cholesterol generally acts as a shock absorber. It forms a part of your cell wall, nerves and brain cells. Though present in trace amount, it is very important for your body function. Let us know a little about the chemistry of Cholesterol. It is fat and divided into Low-Density Lipoprotein (LDL) and High-Density Lipoprotein (HDL). One plays the role of the villain while the another is the Hero.
Let’s talk about the Hero first. HDL is cardioprotective, it mobilises the Cholesterol back to the liver which flushes it out of the system. It reduces the chances of heart disease. While LDL gets mobilised and gets deposited into the blood vessels. It causes the narrowing of the arteries and may cause a blockage if the amount is too high. When it is referred to a person who has high cholesterol, it is generally the LDL that is high. Excess cholesterol in the blood is called Hypercholesterolemia medically. While the narrowing of arteries is called atherosclerosis and Cholesterol is one of the leading causes of it.
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How Do You Lower Your Cholesterol?
If there is a problem, then there will be a solution to it. The only thing is people have to choose which solution suits them the best. Modern therapy includes medication followed by a change in lifestyles. There are few types of drugs that are used for the reduction of cholesterol in your blood. A few of them are mentioned below.
- Statins- They are the class of drugs that slows down the production of cholesterol in the liver. They also increase the liver’s ability to move the LDL from the blood.
- Bile Acid Sequestrants- They help in removing the cholesterol from the bloodstream by removing the bile acids. Bile acid is a by-product of cholesterol and the body needs the bile acid. So for that, they have to break these LDLs.
- Niacin or Nicotinic acid- Niacin is a type of Vitamin B, which increases the type of HDL and lowers the level of LDL.
- Medicinal injections- A new class of medicine called PCSK9 inhibitors lower the Cholesterol level in the blood. This type of medicine is used in people with inherent hypercholesterolemia.
These modern-day drugs come with side effects too. The Stains may cause intestinal problems and in the long run, can damage the liver or cause muscle inflammation. They increased the blood sugar level and a person can be inching close to type 2 Diabetes. Bile acid sequestrants may cause constipation, weight loss and in severe condition cause diarrhoea. The PCSK9 inhibitors may cause flu-like symptoms with muscle redness.
The Ayurvedic Treatment For Cholesterol Management
Ayurvedic treatment is one of the oldest medicinal systems. It is a combination of diet, exercise and specific herbal treatment. The main principle is the detoxification of your system. IT is considered to be safer than synthetic medicine. There is so much in the ocean of this Ayurveda and yet it is still undervalued for most of us. Scientific research is still lagging behind in the case of Ayurveda. Like many other complications, cholesterol problems can also be treated by Ayurvedic medicine.
Ayurvedic treatment for high cholesterol level includes many things like Yoga, breathing exercise, dietary restrictions, herbal supplements, lifestyle changes.
Know more about the Ayurvedic treatment from our experts.
The Herbal Supplements
Few of the most common herbs used in Ayurveda to lower cholesterol are garlic, guggul and arjuna. They are powerful herbs and alone are sufficient but are generally added in combination with ginger, turmeric, shilajit, licorice, triphala, sativa and many other ingredients. Their individual ingredients are often mixed to get the Mustadi Ghanavati. The main mixture consists of turmeric, cyperus rotundus, tribulus terrestris and other Ayurvedic substances. Not only churns, Ayurvedic medicine comes as juices, supplements and tablets. Few notable supplements or individual herbs are mentioned below.
Psyllium supplements– Psyllium is fibre made from the husk of seeds of Plantago Ovata plant. It is generally mixed into drinks or food. It significantly reduces cholesterol levels and helps in relieving constipation and lowers blood sugar level.
Phytosterols- There are derivatives from plants. They inhibit the absorption of cholesterol. They are naturally present in whole grains, nuts and some fruits. Certain manufacturers add phytosterols in food preparations like yoghurt, margarine.
Soy Protein- Soya protein and soy milk can lower your LDL level to a certain extent. You can replace the fatty diet with soya proteins.
One of the widely used tablet names as Liposem tablets consists of the following ingredients.
- Vrikshamla (Garcinia Indica)
- It controls the appetites. It is an important herb as it controls hunger. This will help in breaking down the fat into sugar and other native components for energy. High-fat content also increased the risk of hypercholesterolemia.
- They also help in indigestion and control flatulence.
- Guggulu (Balsamodendron mukul)
- It increased the fat metabolism of the body.
- It keeps the Kapha dosha in control.
- Saptarang (Salacia chinensis)
- The root and stems portion of the plant is used for weight and diabetic control management.
- Arjuna (Terminalia arjuna)
- Arjuna has many issues and mainly it works by keeping the Kapha, Vata and Pitta dosha in check. This herb also has many anti-inflammatory benefits. It’s anti-carcinogenic, anti-atherogenic and hypotensive.
Other ingredients like salmali, Madhuka, Sahachara, Ketaki, Gokshura, Kadali and Rakta chitraka can be used as ayurvedic remedy for cholesterol. They have many digestive properties and are anti-inflammatory.
Potential side effects
Generally, Ayurveda does not have any side effects but if it does not suit your body then there are indications of weakness, rashes, diarrhoea, abdominal cramping and headaches. Many of these Ayurvedic herbs will dilate the blood vessels and are considered as blood thinners. Choose your medicine carefully.
Kapha Pacifying Diet
- Astringent foods: Sprouts, Lentils and vegetables with high water content like cabbage, cauliflower and broccoli and fruits such as apples are and pears can be consumed.
- Bitter foods: Bitter gourd and other leafy vegetables like fenugreek helps to increase the food weight but helps in movement of the bowel. This prevents the deposition of fat in the body.
- Whole grains: They have high fibre content and they help in the metabolism of fat.
Since the Kapha dosha is water plus earth, it is always recommended to eat something hot and avoid cold food. Eat food such that your body requires more energy to digest. Also, avoid cooking oil with either clarified butter or olive oil.
Ask our experts for Kapha pacifying diet used for cholesterol control as per Kapha Dosha
General Diet and Lifestyle
There are many contenders for the best ayurvedic medicine for cholesterol. However, an ayurvedic practitioner will always suggest you change the lifestyle and control the diet along with herbal medicine. One should always take low carb food with less fat. Few tried and tested things include regular exercise, cardio walking helps in increasing the blood flow and reducing the LDLs.
Eat more whole food instead of the processed one. They will help increase the fibre content in your digestive system. They help to keep hunger in control and the body needs more energy to process these kinds of food. Research also shows that a smooth and calm lifestyle, stress reduction, meditation, yoga and breathing exercises will help lower your blood cholesterol.
Apart from that, adopt a healthy lifestyle like, quit smoking, get up from bed early, eat to fill your heart and not your stomach and avoid emotions. Cholesterol control in ayurveda has many options. It has a solution for most things if not everything. But to come to the solution one must have the problem. It is always better to have the preventive measures ready rather than waiting for the cure. Like in the case of cholesterol, if the person is alert from the beginning and adopts a simple and healthy lifestyle he will be mostly disease-free.