Rheumatoid arthritis and ayurveda

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Rheumatoid arthritis and ayurveda

Rheumatoid arthritis

In Rheumatoid Arthritis the lining of joints or lining of internal organs are inflamed . This disease may be chronic ( lasts for a long time ) or may flare up intermittently. The inflammation of lining of joints causes swelling, pain, redness, stiffness and warmth in the affected region . The cells of inflamed lining release enzymes which may harm the related bone and cartilage. This process may cause deformity of joint, pain and may restrict joint movements.

In ayurveda there is very detailed description about Rheumatoid arthritis. Rheumatoid arthritis is very well described in ayurveda It is known as  “Ama vata”. The description in ayurveda for arthritis goes as follows

Sa Kashtaha Sarvarogaanaam yadaa prakupito Bhavet |
Hastha paada shiro gulpha trika jaanu uru sandhishu ||
Karoti sarujam shopham yatra doshaha prapadyate |
Sa desho rujate atyatham vyaviddha iva vrishchkaihi || “

This means ” If the disease “ama vata” (rheumatoid arthritis) becomes chronic the joints ( sandhi )of hands (Hastha), feet ( paada) , ankles and elbow (gulpha ) , low back ( trika ) , knee ( jaanu ) , and hip ( uru ) become inflamed and painful. The pain in affected joints resembles the pain of a scorpion’s sting.”

The exact cause of Rheumatoid arthritis is not known. But immunologists have discovered that Rheumatoid Arthritis is an auto immune disease. Some may have a tendency to inherit this disease.

The cause of rheumatoid arthritis is very well explained in ayurveda. The ayurvedic texts say rheumatoid arthritis is caused by formation of “ama

(Ama is a toxin that is produced by imbalanced body fire ). The toxin ama is carried by imbalanced vata ( one of the three energetic forces ) and reaches the kapha ( one of the three energetic forces ) dominated places like joints, stomach , chest , brain etc. This toxin becomes sticky due to imbalanced doshas and blocks the vital channels which nourish the body.

The sticky toxin ama not only affects the joints but also spreads all over the body . The channels ( channels like arteries, intercellular spaces , pores in cells etc are called srotas ) which allow nutrients to flow through and nourish body tissues , cells get partially blocked. This leads to a decreased supply of nutrients to body tissues and cells . Thus the immunity of the body gets lowered , the appetite reduces , the body becomes weak due to insufficient nourishment of body tissues.

The ama which gets harbored in joints acts like a foreign substance and triggers the immune system. This leads to inflammation of linings of joints .