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College of Ayurveda, Pune.
A Disease-Free Society – Is It Possible?
Dr.med. Rainer Picha, Austria
Since Maharishi Mahesh Yogi’s goal was to create a disease-free society I will analyze whether it’s just an utopia or whether it may be doable.
Ayurveda offers the complete knowledge of how to live a long life, but individual health is also influenced by outer factors such as social conflicts and stress, pollution of air, water, and food, indoor pollution, noise pollution, and various forms of radiation, just to name a few.
In order to manage these innumerable factors that influence health from outside, a global transformation would be required that would include a respectful handling of mother earth, enlightened leadership, peace-promoting programmes, keeping the environment pure, and behaviour in tune with the laws of nature.
Maharishi AyurVeda focuses on both individual and collective health, and handles them from their source – the field of consciousness – with Vedic technologies. I will give a short overview of some of these Vedic disciplines including approaches to collective health, applications of the discovery of Veda in the human physiology, light therapy with gems, Vedic architecture, and Vedic agriculture.
Maharishi Vedic Medicine is Ultra-Modern, Cutting-Edge Medicine — Unified Field Based Medicine
John Hagelin (PhD Harvard), USA
Recent breakthroughs in our scientific understanding of the Universe from string theory and M-theory present Ayurvedic medicine in a completely new light. They reveal that Ayurvedic medicine is unified field based medicine—i.e., the direct application to human health of the deepest principles of nature’s functioning—i.e., the deepest laws of nature governing subatomic scales. Specifically, the three doshas directly correlate, in modern scientific terms, to the three superfields of supersymmetric quantum field theory; the pancha mahabhutas to the five quantum-mechanical spin-types; and the Atma (Self), which is fundamental to Ayurveda, correlates to the “unified field” or superstring field. This new understanding from modern physics reveals that Ayurvedic medicine is more fundamental—and thus potentially more powerful—than contemporary pharmacological medicine. It also explains why Ayurveda, being unified field based medicine, is truly holistic—and hence naturally free of adverse side effects, in comparison to more superficial and fragmented allopathic approaches.
Ayurved for cognition and behavioral disorders
Prof. Gunvant Yeola, MD, India
Psychological diseases are characterized by memory loss, unusual behavior, personality changes, and a decline in cognitive function. Indeed, several scientific studies have described the use of various Ayurvedic medicinal plants viz. Ashwagandha (Withania somnifera), Turmeric (Curcuma longa), Brahmi (Bacopa monnieri), Shankhpushpi (Convolvulus pluricaulis), Jyotishmati (Celastrus paniculatus), Jatamansi (Nardostachys jatamansi) and their constituents for treatment of Psychological diseases.
One novel method of Nasya, is a practical, non-invasive, rapid, and simple method of drug delivery. A second, simple method of administration involves application of the medicated oil on the body and massaging the areas with gentle or deep hand strokes. Ayurveda also relies on several trans-cranial oleation (Shirabhyanga) therapies for nervous system disorders that are non-systemic and non-invasive. Recent work again points to the possibility that the endothelial cells facilitate the entry of the solutes through the frontal lobe and prefrontal cortex.
Comparative study to evaluate the efficacy of topical oil application on scalp for memory enhancement
Purpose of study – This study was based on clinical experiences of topical oil application popularly known as Shiropichu and Shiroabhyanga. This pilot comparative open label clinical study was planned to evaluate effectiveness of topical oil application on scalp by considering its usefulness for enhancement of memory. Hence, this study was planned for school going children who are normal yet hyperactive, and comparison will be made with normal child with normal activity. Material and Methodology – Group A, N = 15 Participants received topical application of coconut oil. Group B, N = 15 Participants received topical application of medicated coconut oil. Each group was advised to do Shiroabhyanga and Shiropichu alternate days. Memory assessment was done by using Wechsler memory scale at baseline and every thirty days for three months. Conclusion – In conclusion it appears that topical oil application modifies both memory/concentration as well as intellectual functions.
Ayurvedic dietary approaches in combatting NCD’s
Professor Gerard Bodeker, UK
Chair, Global Initiative For Traditional Systems (GIFTS) of Health, Oxford, UK;
& Green Templeton College, University of Oxford, UK;
& Dept. of Epidemiology, Columbia University, New York, USA
WHO (2016) has identified Non-Communicable Diseases (NCDs) as the leading cause of death worldwide, with almost three quarters of all NCD deaths occurring in low- and middle-income countries.
The Global Burden of Disease Study (2013) has found diet to be more associated with disease burden than physical inactivity or high body mass index.
Increasingly, the Mediterranean Diet is touted as the dietary pattern to counter NCDs. The Mediterranean Diet, a Western diet, studied by Westerners on Westerners, is now being recommended for the world, 75% of which is non-Western. This approach does not take into account cultural traditions of nutrition (and hence compliance), local food crops, or perspectives from epigenetics, metabolomics or nutrigenomics.
Ayurvedic diets are rich in pharmacologically active compounds with anti-inflammatory, anti-diabetic, anticancer and cardioprotective properties – hence in combatting NCDs.
Ayurveda’s personalized approach to nutrition is premised on different foods being suited to different metabolic types, different seasons, and different times of day. Here, metabolomics, nutrigenomics, epigenetics and chronobiology converge.
Congruent with the trend towards personalized medicine, research now offers genomic evidence for the construct validity of Ayurvedic body types. Ayurveda’s personalized nutritional framework and six-taste system for classifying foods merits evaluation as a culture-free nutritional strategy, applicable across dietary traditions and food types in preventing and managing NCDs.
Integrative Approaches For The Future: Ayurveda, Genomics and Epigenetics
Prof. Bhushan Patwardhan, PhD, FAMS, India
In the Vedic knowledge systems, the syllable Om symbolized a primordial sound what stands unchanged behind the changes we see. In the modern science genome symbolizes an immortal unbroken chain of life. Omics involve study of not only genome but also other consequential molecules like proteins and metabolites. Today modern science is moving in the direction of systems biology, artificial intelligence and complexity theories, where importance of holistic approaches is recognized. Advances in molecular biology and omics technologies are shaping current understanding of biomedicine, yet the promise of personalized medicine has not materialized. With emerging science of epigenetics, scientists are now realizing avenues beyond genetics. Need for systems approach and nonlinear complexity sciences is intensely felt than ever before. In such a situation, basic principles like loka, purusha, mahabhuta, dosha, rasa, guna, agni and prakriti have become more relevant. Ayurveda has person-centered approach where each individual requires personalized diet, lifestyle, and therapeutics. An emerging field of research field known as Ayugenomics is now showing new ways to expedite the progress of personalized health and integrative medicine of the future.
Drivers of Development to Optimize Brain Maturation
Frederick Travis, PhD, USA
This talk will explore how age-appropriate experiences enhance brain and cognitive development throughout the lifespan. These age-appropriate experiences would be the drivers at each age. We explore how a nurturing caregiver is the driver in the first years of life, how language learning is the driver from three to ten years, and how problem solving is the driver in the teenage years. To continue development in adult years, it is necessary to transcend thought. Thus, Transcendental Meditation, which is a meditation technique designed for transcending, is a requirement to optimize human development.
Comparative effectiveness of Ayurveda and conventional care in knee osteoarthritis – a randomized controlled trial
Dr. med. Christian Kessler, MA, Germany
Background: Ayurveda is used to treat knee osteoarthritis (OA) despite limited evidence in international medical databases. We aimed to evaluate the effectiveness of complex multimodality Ayurvedic treatment in comparison to conventional care in OA knee patients.
Methods: 151 patients (mean age 61.2 years; 116 females, 35 males) with OA of the knee according to American College of Rheumatology (ACR) criteria were included in a multicenter, randomized, controlled trial and treated in 2 hospital outpatient clinics and 2 private outpatient clinics with a total of 5 physicians and 20 therapists participating. Patients received either Ayurvedic treatment (n=77) or conventional care (n=74) with 15 treatments over 12 weeks. Customized Ayurvedic treatment included specific manual treatments and massages, diet counseling including specific consideration of selected food items, the nutritional Ayurvedic supplements Ashvagandha and Yogaraja Guggulu, general and specific lifestyle advice, knee specific yoga posture advice and introduction to daily self-applied knee massage. Primary outcome was the change on the Western Ontario and McMaster University Osteoarthritis Index after 12 weeks (validated German version). Secondary outcomes included the WOMAC subscales (pain: range 0-50; stiffness: range 0-20; and function: range 0-170); a pain disability index, numeric rating scales for pain and sleep quality, a pain experience scale, a quality-of-life index, a profile of mood index, rescue medication use, and safety issues.
Results: Changes of the WOMAC Index from baseline to 12 weeks were more pronounced in the Ayurveda group [mean difference 61.0 (95% CI 52.4; 69.6)] than in the conventional group [32.0 (95% CI 21.4;42.6)] resulting in a significant difference between groups (p<0.001) and a clinically relevant effect size [Cohen’s d 0.68 (95% CI 0.35;1.01)]. Similar tendencies were observed for all secondary outcomes at week 12. Effects were sustainable at follow-ups after 6 and 12 months. Conclusions: The results suggest that a complex Ayurvedic treatment might be clinically superior to complex conventional care in the treatment of knee osteoarthritis.
Registration: The trial was registered at clinicaltrials.gov under NCT01225133.
Funding Source: Ministry of AYUSH, Government of India.
Cost and Health Benefits from Integrating New Age Ayurveda into European Health Systems
Dr. med. Harsha Gramminger, Germany
General Health Costs are spiraling in all developed and developing nations of the world. In 2013, Germany spent almost €315 billion on health. This was an increase of about €12.1 billion compared to 2012: €3,910 in 2013 vs. €3,770 in 2012 per inhabitant. Type 2 Diabetes, Obesity, Hyperlipidemia, Hypertension & other “civilization” diseases are the main factors for these costs.
With over 8 million sufferers (in 2009 and growing), Diabetes Mellitus is one of the most widespread diseases in Germany. Serious “secondary complications” and “associated diseases” / co-morbidities include heart attack, stroke, athlete’s foot etc.
Total costs €3,817 includes three components: direct – disease, indirect, and associated complication.
Obesity is another new global epidemic and set to become the number one health problem globally by the year 2025. In 2013, 52% of all Germans were overweight, which is about 42.02 Million people! The associated conditions include: Type 2 Diabetes, Hypertension, Vascular diseases, Stroke, Coronary heart disease, Gall stones, Cancer, Sleep Apnea Syndrome, Diseases of the joints and of the skin, and more.
Clinical and practical experience is proven, that Ayurveda is able to improve the condition of both Type 2 diabetes and Obesity. Furthermore it is able by its lifestyle guidance and preventive holistic approach, to reduce and avoid follow–up diseases and costs.
The presentation will show with facts and figures how the wisdom of Ayurveda can be followed for the New Age to prevent, manage and cure such diseases. Figures for savings to the European Health care costs will be presented and discussed.
A simple ama pachana treatment – practical application, clinical results and evaluation through HRV (heart rate variability) measurement
Dr. med. Wolfgang Schachinger, Austria
Ama pachana (removal of toxic undigested material) and agni deepana (strengthening of digestive power) are important pillars of ayurvedic treatment.
This lecture describes a simple, easy to apply 7 day ama pachana treatment that was prescribed 100 fold in daily practice. This treatment consists of herbal compounds, spices, and easy to follow dietary and life style recommendations.
Clinical cases show that this treatment can be an effective start into a successful ayurvedic therapy when indicated.
In the analysis through HRV (heart rate variability) signs of higher orderliness and autonomic stability could be found at the end of this 7 day treatment.
Can Ayurveda save the NHS?
Dr. Donn Brennan, MB BCh BAO, MRCGP, MScAyu, MSCI, Ireland
Chronic Disease is increasing with an ageing population and with the successes of modern medicine. The increasing burden on the National Health Services is becoming unsustainable. Treatment needs are exceeding resources. Ayurveda has the capacity to greatly reduce this burden on the NHS.