The 2013 Statistical Update has been released by the American Heart Association and it shows some intriguing facts about heart diseases. The results show that 1 in 19 deaths in the U.S. occur because of strokes, while cardiovascular disease accounts for 1 death each 40 seconds. More specifically, over 2,150 U.S. residents become victims of CVD every day.
Among the risk factors listed, some of the reasons include obesity, hypertension, diabetes, high cholesterol and high blood pressure levels. This shows the need for proper care and management that can reduce the symptoms and better quality of life for heart patients.
Ayurveda: a holistic approach
Cardiovascular patients are often recommended to combine holistic healing with traditional therapy and tools for the best possible treatment. In this regard, Ayurveda is turning out to be a viable holistic approach for heart patients. It is based on the premise that the toxic material ‘ama’ is the primary cause for the disease, and it is caused by food that the body isn’t able to digest properly.
According to the U.S. National Institute Library of Medicine, the Ayurvedic approach includes meditation, diet, herbal practices and yoga. The source also cites that several Ayurveda professionals use herbs that show promising results, and yoga, a part of the approach, has an excellent safety profile as has been found useful for patients with hypertension and heart disease.
Ashwagandha, Arjuna and Brahmi are some of the Ayurvedic herbs that have been deemed as useful to include in the diet. As for the toxic byproducts of undigested food mentioned before, Ayurveda therapy recommends drinking warm water every day.
The cleansing face requires the patient to be in bed as early as 10 PM, while the last meal/snack should be taken 3 hours before bed. This is important because the body does most of the cleansing during its natural purification phase.
It should however be noted that Ayurvedic therapy, just like other holistic treatments, is not given ample time in case of pulmonary or sudden cardiac arrest to leave its effect. Therefore, patients who wish to follow the holistic approach should combine it with emergency measures.
For example, the use of Automated External Defibrillators is a necessity for patients in case of sudden cardiac arrest. Individuals following the Ayurvedic holistic approach can also watch training videos and read online educational guides to learn more about the use of AEDs. Getting accustomed to such emergency measures can translate into life-saving actions.
The customary rule when it comes to exercising in this therapy is frequency. Patients can exercise half of their normal capacity for 5 days a week, without causing muscle strain and stress. Yoga can be a part of these exercise sessions or can be pursued on alternative days.
Some of the postures practiced under Ayurveda therapy include:
1. Vata: Involves relaxing postures to help the mind and body escape from excessive motions.
2. Pitta: helps the body to escape from excessive heat by restorative and calm yoga movements.
3. Kapha: This involves active postures that help to create movement and heat inside the body, leading to an improvement in blood circulation.
The recommendations made above make it evident that caring for the heart is not simply a matter of following the medication prescribed by the doctor, but requires lifestyle changes.