Ayurveda For Bone Health
What is bone health?
Our bones are living tissue composed of minerals, protein, and collagen. Their role isn't only to support and structure and protect our vital organs and help maintain the best electrolyte balance for our metabolic functions. Why does bone health matter? Our bones give us the structure and let us move. They protect our heart, brain, and other organs from trauma. They store minerals like phosphorous and calcium, which help keep our bones strong and discharge them in the body when we need them for additional applications. Eating foods rich in vitamin D and calcium, getting a lot of exercises, and keeping healthy habits help keep our bones healthy.
But if we do not eat right and do not get enough of the right types of exercise, our bones become weak and eventually can break. Broken bones or fractures can be debilitating and occasionally require surgery to heal. They can also result in long-lasting health issues.
But the great news is it is never too late to care for your bones. How do therapies like Ayurveda contribute to joint and bone health? Can an Ayurvedic diet and other therapies alleviate the symptoms of arthritis? When we consider our bones, the human skeleton comes to mind. First of all, it is the hard, mineralized frame that supports our body. It certainly plays that role superbly, but it also does a lot more for us. Ayurveda includes a wealth of information that will assist you in rebuilding and strengthening your joints and bones.
Bone health is essential for longevity and healthy aging. The step to natural bone health is self-evaluation. Even though the bones are hidden beneath the surface of the body, with Ayurveda, you can find out how to estimate the strength of your bones so that you can monitor progress between doctor's visits. Ayurveda does this by analyzing secondary cells (updates) and waste products (malas). If your hair, nails, and teeth are healthy, it indicates healthy bones.
However, light hair, weak teeth, and brittle nail indicate soft or deficient bone tissue (asthi dhatu). In case you've got white spots on your nails, then that could mean mineral malabsorption - your bones are becoming depleted.
How does Ayurveda view bone health?
Ayurveda considers bone, or Asthi, to be among those seven Dhatus (or fundamental tissues) inside our body. It has a strong connection to Medas (adipose or fatty tissue), Majja (our nervous system) in addition to the hair, nails, and teeth.
This concept helps us understand the metabolic role of bone and tissues concerning inflammation, demineralization, and fatigue. Conditions that affect teeth, bones, nails, and hair may also be seen from this more holistic viewpoint. They may indicate underlying issues within our metabolic system which will need to be addressed.
Hormones and bone health link
Among the most frequent causes of bone erosion and weakness is aging. Changes in hormonal balance related to menopause also leave women more vulnerable to osteoarthritis and cartilage difficulties. Ayurveda takes the view that changes in hormones produce a Pitta imbalance in the body. This contributes to the system becoming more heated and acidic because of the fire elements connected with Pitta.
To counteract this acidic imbalance, a growing number of minerals are leached from the bones to the bloodstream. Taking mineral supplements can decrease the progress of this matter, but they won't permanently resolve it. The Ayurvedic method is to change to a cooling, alkaline Pitta-balancing diet. Herbs such as Bala, Ashwagandha, and Shatavari are also quite valuable in keeping the equilibrium and relieving better bone nourishment.
Analysis of the tongue may also show the bones' health, specifically, the degree of mineral absorption with Chronic malabsorption displays as scalloped teeth marks along both sides of the language. Through a detailed review, the health of a person's bones, and the root cause of any disease, can be known and amended at its origin.
Ayurvedic treatments for bone health
Bones provide a shape that supports the body and allow for the movement of the muscles. Since the densest tissue in the body, they protect internal organs, including the brain, lungs, and heart. Bones do not just support and shield; however, they also act as a storehouse of essential nutrients such as iron, magnesium, and copper. They can help preserve water-electrolyte balance through the regulation of magnesium, calcium, potassium, and sodium. Additionally, the bone marrow produces red blood cells and many white blood cells also. Bones can also be known as excretory tissue in Ayurveda and may remove unwanted heavy metals throughout the nails and hair.
The large intestine is the home base of Vata dosha. The close relationship between both of these tissues reveals the susceptibility of these bones to Vata disorders. Whenever there is pathology in the large intestine (gas, constipation), the pathology is moved to the bones that become more porous and air-filled. This is the case of osteoporosis.
Bones are composed of a matrix-like structure. The lines that form the correspondence are strong and made of ground. The distance between the lines is full of air. Thus, bones produce a strong but light structure, permitting the body to move quickly. Long bones have a hollow heart that's full of hematopoietic tissue known as the marrow.
People that have a Kapha nature having lower agni create thicker and thicker bones. Those who have a pitta nature, having greater agni, develop bones that aren't as dense but are more metabolically active. This may cause narrowing and fatigue in the bones and inflammation if the Pitta becomes vitiated. Those who have a Vata nature, obtaining a variable agni, create less asthi dhatu, and what is generated is of lower quality. It's thinner and more brittle.
To produce healthful asthi dhatu, sufficient earth and atmosphere must be consumed in the correct balance throughout the diet. Earth is found in sweet foods like nuts and grains and astringent foods like beans. Air is located in bitter and spicy foods such as most vegetables. Consumption alone doesn't guarantee that healthful asthi will be shaped. The two elements have to be appropriately digested so that their attributes can be used to build bones. Thus jatharagni (central digestive fire) must be healthy. If it isn't healthy, these exact foods will create ama and toxify the body and mind instead of forming healthy bones.
- Ayurvedic remedies for bone health: The health of the bones is closely associated with the health of the digestive tract in Ayurveda. Most of all, an imbalance in the digestive tract will cause an accumulation of digestive toxins (ama). When these toxins circulate in the bloodstream create an acidic environment. The body may also draw alkaline calcium from the bones to reduce the acidic state. This calcium depletion from the bones may weaken the bones and teeth. Ama may also lodge in the joints and cause pain, distress, and lack of mobility. The colon is also closely associated with the bones' health since it's the main mineral absorption website. Nourishing the whole digestive tract, especially the colon, reducing gas and bloating, and stimulating effective mineral absorption is crucial to ensure decent bone quality.
- Imbalance in the bones: Ama is a significant cause of the majority of bone disorders. Ama stems from weak digestive power (agni) that is most commonly caused by ingesting an inappropriate diet to a body type. A diet lacking essential nutrients and minerals also decreases bone strength.
Trauma can create a weak spot (khavaigunya) where digestive toxins are more likely to lodge. But, light exercise and moderate strain on the bones strengthens them. Improper exercise, like constant running on pavements, or no exercise in any way, will reduce bone density. If one is overweight, this may also add extra pressure on the joints and the bones.
The climate can fuel an aggravation, especially in the joints. Cold weather may increase pain and breakage in the joints, while hot weather is more likely to aggravate rheumatoid arthritis.
See: Gut Health Diet
Common Bone Ailments
- Scoliosis is a curvature of the spine. Many individuals have a small curvature and do not even know it until a physician points it out. But in more severe cases, the spine bends far beyond its regular selection and can strongly inhibit mobility and influence critical organs, including the heart and lungs. In these situations, continuing medical rehabilitation and operation is often required. In small cases, you can help maintain good spinal alignment by strengthening the muscles around the spine - evenly on both sides. This may be accomplished through physical therapy, regular exercises, and yoga-like swimming. While this alone is not sufficient to prevent scoliosis, it can help decrease pain or distress experienced in moderate cases.
- Osteoporosis: Osteoporosis is a condition in which the bones gradually become thinner and are more likely to fracture. In Ayurveda, this is a condition associated with Vata dosha. Thus a Vata pacifying diet and lifestyle should be followed. Bone noodle soup is an essential preventative treatment since it's nutrient-dense, easy to digest, nourishes the bones, and pacifies Vata owing to its grounding and healing qualities. Bone broth also contains antioxidants, glucosamine, and chondroitin that are essential ingredients for healthy bones. Adding mineral-rich foods that are dense, heavy, and stable increases bone density, especially foods with a high calcium content like seaweed, lettuce, lettuce, leafy greens such as kale and sesame seeds. Also, adding healthful fats into the diet will nourish the muscle and fat tissue.
It may result in pain, swelling, and lack of freedom in the joints. A good alignment gained through physical therapy, yoga, and appropriate posture will prevent extra wear and tear on the joints. Guggulu supports the joints' comfortable motion and scratches away the Vata ama lodged in this condition's joints. Implementing castor oil topically to the affected regions also destroys Vata ama in most cases of osteoarthritis. Osteoarthritis can be inflammatory, causing specific proteins (cytokines) to develop to degenerate the cartilage further. The active ingredient in turmeric, curcumin, can reduce the inflammatory process and prevent further cartilage degeneration.
- Fractures & broken bones: Ayurveda has many traditional remedies for healing broken bones. Bala in Ayurveda impart strength on the human body but has been declared unsafe for the FDA's internal consumption. However, it may be used externally. Ashwagandha/Bala oil combines Bala with a different herb, ashwagandha, which's also praised for its ability to increase strength and endurance when healing. Arjuna and shilajit are also famous for their wound healing properties and are utilized for the mending of broken and fractured bones in Ayurveda.
- Bone-Strengthening Abhyanga (Ayurvedic Oil Massage): Ayurveda also recommends self-application of petroleum, or Abhyanga, as part of your everyday routine. This is particularly important in cold, dry, Vata-aggravating climates. Applying oil to your system supports and nourishes the skin, enhances circulation, keeps the body warm, helps raise bones, and keeps your ability to move with elegance. Ayurveda understands that pain in the small joints of feet and palms (which often worsens in Winter) is due to Vata Dosha's rise. This hurts the flow, particularly in areas furthest from the center.
- Bone-strengthening oils: The ideal oil for bone-strengthening is organic cold-pressed sesame oil. It may be infused with warming essential oils, such as ginger or cardamom, to assist further. Medicated oils may also contain Bala (Negative cordifolia) or Ashwagandha (Withania somnifera) to boost the Vata-balancing effect. Usually, the oil is left on the skin for 25 to 30 minutes before washing it off. In cold countries, it is more sensible to gently apply the oil throughout the body before immersing yourself in a hot tub for thirty minutes. The warmth and moisture increase the impact of sesame oil, improving its absorption into the skin.
- Ayurvedic bone broth: Ayurveda and bone broth? This combination may be somewhat surprising to anybody who thinks the Ayurvedic diet is purely vegetarian! Ayurveda generally recommends an easy-to-digest plant-based diet, but there is also an understanding that particular meals prepared with animal products might also be beneficial once the body requires that sort of nourishment. Bone broth is a nourishing soup prepared from the bony and cartilaginous joints of any creature. It is considered very warming. Although bone broth has become quite trendy lately, it is merely a richer form of inventory. It is possible to prepare an Ayurvedic hearty bone broth by following the recommendations below.
- Bone Tonics: Vata body types tend to be weaker, thinner, or more fragile bones than other body types. They're also more likely to develop breaking joints and arthritic conditions, so they ought to be sure to nourish their bones. The first step for Vata is to feed and clean out the colon using an herb like haritaki. The use of mahanarayan oil helps relax muscles and lubricate joints for comfortable movement.
Pitta body types are the most inflammatory conditions of the joints. Kishor guggulu pacifies PittaPitta and arthritic inflammation like pain, swelling, or redness of the joints. This rejuvenating formula targets the musculoskeletal system and scratches away deep-seated ama. Aloe vera juice is also a suitable general tonic to soothe the digestive tract and decrease Pitta ama and inflammation.
Kapha types naturally possess the strongest and healthiest bones. But, they are still more likely to accumulate of ama. Trikatu will stimulate a slow Kapha digestive system and clear ama in the GIT. Frankincense (Boswellia) acts as a rejuvenating for Kapha and is useful in cold and damp conditions in the joints, such as swelling and pain. Additionally, it decongests the stations, mends bones, and scratches deep ama.
Ayurvedic remedies for arthritis
A growing number of people opt for natural remedies and an integrated, holistic approach, including massage, diet, exercise, and herbal medicine. This is better tolerated by the body over time. Ayurveda presents a more holistic approach to bone health.
Ayurveda does not take the view that arthritis is a localized issue from the affected joint. It is regarded as a manifestation of an imbalance in a place of weak energy with a history of injury or overuse. In addition to treatment through treated oil massages and therapeutic yoga, Ayurveda also concentrates on a Dosha-balancing diet using herbs that nourish the bones and joints.
Through Ayurveda, the many symptoms associated with inflammation such as digestive problems, lack of energy, and inability to concentrate can be addressed. The function of specific food types, stress, improper digestion, and metabolic waste accumulation can be evaluated and then addressed effectively through Ayurveda. Precise treatments will be personalized, based on all of the causative factors, including age, history of illness, or Dosha imbalance.