Understanding Diabetes in An Ayurvedic Approach

Diabetes mellitus is a metabolic disorder characterized by high blood glucose levels associated with other manifestations resulting from defects in insulin secretion, insulin action, or both. It resembles “Prameha” in Ayurveda. The Sanskrit root word “Meha” literally means ‘to micturate’ (urination). It is prefixed by ‘Pra’, meaning excess. The main characteristic feature of the disease “Premeha” is excessive frequent urination. As far as the Ayurvedic system is concerned, understanding the disease and how it can cure chronic and unresolved diseases today is based entirely on the principles involved. The individual nature of a person is derived from the relationship of the three Doshas: Vata, Pitta, and Kapha. In the same way, understanding diabetes is categorized according to human bodily functions and genetic code. 

It is often believed that a sedentary lifestyle and a diet that comprises packaged food, fast food, and drinks are the primary reasons for diabetes. But nowadays, diabetes can happen at any age without reason due to various factors. Every hospital follows systematic treatment based on their policy. Even after twenty or thirty years of taking different medicines and testing the blood once a month, keeping blood sugar levels under control, Still the side effects of diabetes are not entirely preventable. 

We are in a situation where there is no awareness about what type of diabetes is caused for a person and proper guidance towards the management. 

What causes diabetes based on Ayurveda?

  1. Habits of consuming foodstuff with sweet taste and properties of brmhana (containing more carbohydrate and fat than proteins like yogurt, non-vegetarian foods, milk)
  2. The habit of indulgence in excessive sleep, especially in the daytime
  3. Excessive indulgence in sexual and other sedentary habits( leads to disturbance in the normal functioning of Kapha dosha, which leads to diabetes
  4. Stress-adrenaline and cortisol production stimulates the production of glucose in the body indirectly and affects insulin levels.

From an Ayurvedic Perspective, Diabetes is classified into 20 types based on the Vata, Pitta, Kapha Dosha dominance. 

Kapha: 10 forms

Pitta: 6 forms

Vata: 4 forms

One must know what type of diabetes occurs and treat it accordingly.

Usually, when there is diabetes, our first thought about the symptoms is losing weight. 

But in the case of Kapha’s dominance, the symptoms may differ. 

  1. Weight Gain
  2. Anemia 
  3. Itchy Skin 
  4. Excessive hunger and thirst
  5. Chronic cold and cough 

The disease caused by 

  1. Kapha is easily curable.
  2. Pitta is Manageable.
  3. Vata is incurable.

SYMPTOMS:

TYPES

20 types of prameha as per Ayurveda classics (based on Micturition)

Kaphaja prameha-10 types  

  1. UDAKA MEHA- resembling water
  2. IKSHU-VALIKA MEHA- resembling sugarcane juice
  3. SANDRA MEHA- having a density
  4. SANDRA PRASADA MEHA- having a thickness below and transparency in the upper layer
  5. SUKLA MEHA- having white colour
  6. SUKRA MEHA- containing seminal fluid
  7. SITA MEHA- having the cold touch
  8. SANAIH MEHA- passing out slowly
  9. LALA MEHA- containing slimy material like saliva
  10. SIKATA MEHA- containing a sand-like substance

Pittaja prameha-6 types

  1. KSHARA MEHA- resembling the solution of alkalies
  2. KALA MEHA- having black colour
  3. NILA MEHA- having indigo colour
  4. HARIDRA MEHA- having a yellow colour like turmeric
  5. MANJISHTA MEHA- having a reddish colour like that of manjistha plant
  6. RAKTA MEHA- having blood in it.

Vataja prameha – 4 types

  1. MAJJA MEHA- mixed with majja
  2. OJO MEHA OR MADHU MEHA- combined with ojas (bodily strength)
  3. VASA MEHA- combined with vasa (smells like muscle fat)
  4. LASIKA MEHA- combined with lasika or lymph

The Holistic system of Ayurveda aims to maintain the health of the healthy individual and cure the diseases of the patient and works to ensure that no further complications should be caused. Ayurvedic management for diabetes is based on the complete change in the person’s lifestyle; proper medication and diet are advised to lead a healthy, active life.