By

Dr. Ranjana Chawla, AyD., CAS

| 12/10/2018

Ayurveda & Asthma

Ayurveda & Asthma

The season of sunshine, warmth, and long days outdoors can spell trouble for some asthma patients.  Hot air can irritate the airway and lead to the type of inflammation that triggers asthma symptoms.

According to Ayurveda, asthma does not begin in the lungs but in the digestive system, which gets very much impacted by our lifestyle choices. According to this belief, asthma is primarily caused by poor diet, weakened digestion and the creation of ama (toxins) in the body. These toxins created by improperly digested food are carried through channels directly into the chest and lung area.

In Ayurveda, we believe that everyone is unique, so it is important to understand how the symptoms are manifested in the individual. 

Wet type asthma presents itself with coughing and wheezing with abundant white or clear phlegm or mucous. Sometimes instead of wheezing, there will be a railing sound produced by fluid in the lungs.

Dry type asthma presents itself with dryness and wheezing. Other symptoms may include thirst, dry mouth, dry skin, constipation and anxiety.

The Ayurvedic approach is all about strengthening the natural healing ability of the body. According to Ayurveda, the real problem with asthma is not the external allergen but the internal imbalance.

For example, a 5-year-old boy complained of asthma, coughing heavily between 10–11pm and would wake up every night with a heavy cough and had a tough time sleeping. Other symptoms included shortness of breath, mild constipation and low body weight.

Treatment included a very nourishing restricted diet and herbs to improve his digestion, elimination and overall strength. Breathing exercises, aromatherapy and lifestyle changes were also used. Three weeks after starting the treatment his mother reported remarkable improvements and after two months of treatment symptoms were completely gone, his breathing capacity had returned to normal. He was now sleeping throughout the night with no cough and his body weight also increased from 37 to 42 lbs.

Treatment approach for wet type asthma: Avoid mucous forming foods such as milk, cheese, and yogurt. The use of pungent spices such as pepper, ginger, cayenne is good to include in the diet.

Treatment approach for dry type asthma: A nourishing diet with warming spices. Include the sour juices from lime or lemon to nourish the tissues. Relaxation practices to calm anxiety can be very helpful.

Improving your lifestyle and diet can virtually cure asthma. And, as health improves it leads to a wish to stay and continue along this harmonious path.

Ayurveda, which literally translated means "the science or knowledge of life" is the traditional medical system of India. Its origin dates back an estimated 5-10,000 years, and it is widely considered the oldest form of holistic health care in the world. 

Ranjana Chawla is a Doctor of Ayurveda, certified from California College of Ayurveda, a world leader in Ayurvedic education. She is also a certified yoga teacher and trained in Yoga Nidra. Ranjana strongly believes that every body has a capacity to heal by providing an optimal health environment that is, by eating the right diet and making the right lifestyle choices for their own body-mind constitution. When the body and mind are in harmony, normal physiology is restored, and healing takes place. Ranjana teaches her clients the basic principles of Ayurveda, so that they become empowered to keep themselves healthy.


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