‘Right food at the right time is an effective medicine'

Starvation should not be adopted as a means to tackle obesity. A lot of lifestyle factors, including proper diet, exercise and good sleep are very important in the management of obesity as ‘vaata', ‘pitha' and ‘kapha' considered to be the basic elements in one's constitution in Ayurveda, should be in perfect balance, said C.R. Agnives, Ayurveda researcher and winner of Dhanwantari Award instituted by the Kerala government.

He was delivering a lecture on the Ayurvedic perspective on obesity at the Global Ayurveda Fest here on Saturday

The former Director of Ayurveda Medical Education M.R. Vasudevan Nampoothiri, who spoke on the relevance of Ayurveda dietetics in the management of non-communicable diseases (NCDs), pointed out that the ancient scriptures of Bhavaprakasha and Charaka Samhitha, cited improper diet as the main cause of NCDs.

“Eating undesirable food, having a meal within three hours of the previous one, and eating untimely food can all harm one's health. Food should be eaten slow so that digestion takes place fast and no food should be consumed so that one feels full,” he said quoting scriptures.

In short, right food at the right time is an effective medicine for good health, Dr. Namboothiri said.

Renowned teacher-clinician of Ayurveda from Tamil Nadu L. Mahadevan, spoke in detail about the basic concepts of ‘dhatu' (tissue systems), ‘dosha' (vatha, pitha and kapha' ) and ‘ritu' in Ayurveda and how these influence one's health, with special reference to hepato biliary diseases.

Director of Manipal Life Sciences Centre who spoke on ‘NCDs — genomics and prakrithi,' elaborated on how the body's DNA-repairing capacity diminished with age and how ‘rasayanas' could help in DNA repair and maintaining the original functioning of the cells.

Mark Rosenberg, Chief Executive Officer, European Academy of Ayurveda from Germany, said that Ayurveda as complementary medicine was gaining popularity in Germany. He spoke about how people were more bothered about holistic health, and how in Germany, Ayurveda was helping modern medicine heal body and mind.

Holistic cure

An Ayurveda practitioner in Europe for the past 15 years, E.P. Jeevan, pointed out that depression, psychosomatic disorders, rheumatic ailments and metabolic disorders were very common in Europe and that more and more people were thinking about good health beyond simple cure. Ayurveda was gaining popularity because of its holistic nature of treating the mind, body and spirit to gain good health, Dr. Jeevan said.

Parallel sessions dealing with degenerative diseases, liver disorders and NCDs with a special focus on diseases affecting women were also held.

Keywords: Ayurveda Fest