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Sunday, 05 November 2023 | Dr R P Parashar


With the change in weather, people have started suffocating due to increasing pollution levels in the National Capital Region.  There has been a sudden increase in the number of patients suffering from diseases like asthma, COPD and allergic bronchitis.  After Corona, the functioning of people's hearts and lungs has been badly affected.

The responsibility of pollution control lies not only with the government, but with the citizens as well.  By using simple measures, home remedies and Ayurvedic treatment not only can the functioning of the lungs be improved, the harm caused to the body by pollution can also be reduced to a great extent.  The adverse effects of pollution  can be avoided as well as reduced through yoga, pranayam, Ayurvedic medicines and Panchakarma therapy.

To prevent polluted air from entering the body, use a mask  regularly when  outside so that particles of  even  2.5 microns size can not enter the body.

Even if the particles have entered the body, these can be removed with the help of Nasya Karma, Jalneti  and Swedan panchkarma therapy.

Nasya Karma - Under Nasya Karma, mustard or sesame oil is applied in the nose so that the dust particles remain stuck in the nasal cavity and cannot reach the respiratory system further.  Medicinal oils like Shadbindu can also be used for Nasya Karma.

Jalneti ( Nasal Cavity  Cleaning) - Under Jalneti, warm water is poured into one nostril through a pot with a spout and taken out from the other, then poured into the other and taken out from the first.  It is put into the nose and taken out through the mouth.  Due to Jalneti, the particles stuck in the nose and respiratory tract come out and cannot reach further into the lungs and respiratory system.

Swedan (Sweating)  - Hot water,  milk or tea is drunk for sweating of the whole body after covering by a thick cloth in Swedan panchkarma therapy. Dust particles entered in the lungs and other parts of the body are unable to cause inflammation in the respiratory system as a result of Swedan.  Due to sweating, the mucus stuck in the lungs melts, resulting in the dust particles stuck with the mucus come out of the body.

Evaporation - If 2-3 liters of water is boiled in the house at the entrance in the morning and evening, then most of the dust particles will settle down which will eliminate the air pollution in the house and the air will become clean.  Sprinkle water outside the house so that the dust particles outside the house settle down.

Herbs and medicines: Ill effects of pollution and the body's immunity  can be increased by consuming turmeric, basil, vasaka,  ginger, cinnamon etc. boiled in milk or tea or in the form of a decoction cures sore throat and inflammation. Drinking dates, Piper longum, raisins and fresh or dry ginger boiled in milk increases the immunity of the body and improves the functioning of the lungs. Ayurvedic medicines like Sitopaladi Churna, Talisaadi Churna, Tankan Bhasma, Lakshmi Vilas Ras, Chandra Amrit Ras, Chitrak Haritaki, Agastya Haritaki, Vasavaleh and Tulsi, Turmeric, Vasaka, Bhringraj, Kutki,  etc. are quite beneficial for improving lung functions.

Diet - Foods of cold nature like rice, curd, curry, cabbage, peas, urad dal, ice cream etc. should be avoided.  Use green vegetables like bitter gourd, zucchini, tinda, spinach, bathua, mustard and pulses like moong, gram and lentils in food.  Take soup of tomato, spinach and green vegetables two to three times a day and include  grains of  warm nature like bajra and jowar in your diet.

For the removal of toxins, it is necessary  that the elementary canal remains clean and  there should not be  constipation.  For smooth digestion of food, spices like cardamom, fennel, coriander, cinnamon, fenugreek, celery, cumin, turmeric etc. should be used regularly.  If  suffering from constipation, use castor oil with milk before sleeping at night.

Stop using the air conditioner completely and keep the fan's speed slow.  Special care needs to be taken at night, especially for children and elders because there is a significant variation between day and night temperatures.

Practice Kumbhaka (full breathing in the lungs and holding it for maximum time) regularly in the morning and evening so that the lungs become strong and flexible.  Pranayama, Anulom-Vilom, Dhanushasana, Chakrasana, Bhujangasana and Halasana also play an important role in strengthening the lungs.

(The Write is Dr R P Parashar, Ayurveda Expert, Chief Medical Officer (Ayurveda), Municipal Corporation of Delhi)

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