Ayurvedic Treatment in Kerala for Weight Loss
If your waistline has been growing or if you have been running short of breath even while doing light activities and sweating excessively, you are probably overweight and could benefit significantly by undergoing a full course of ayurvedic treatment in Kerala for weight loss. Obesity is a serious condition that can lead to diseases like diabetes and cardiovascular conditions at an early age and could even shorten your lifespan. With ayurvedic treatment for weight loss in Kerala, you could lose about 10 kg (22lbs) in 4 weeks’ time; it is a highly effective and healthy way to come back to your healthy body weight.
What is obesity?
Ayurveda considers obesity a metabolic disorder - i.e., obesity is the result of some chemical processes going wrong in our body. The result is that the food that we eat is not digested properly and it accumulates as fat tissue, especially in and around the waist, abdomen, hips, breast, buttocks and neck. In ayurveda, this condition is called medo roga. Hence, apart from slimming, a chief goal of Kerala ayurvedic treatment for weight loss is to restore healthy metabolism and prevent unhealthy accumulation of fat.
What leads to obesity?
What causes the chemical reactions in our body to go wrong? In most cases, diet and lifestyle play a very key role here. Just like butter is formed from milk, different body tissues are formed from the food that we eat. But when you regularly have high calorie food and live a sedentary life, it disturbs the dosha balance in our body and increases the kapha dosha ( the balance between the three doshas - vata, pitta and kapha - is what keeps us healthy ). When kapha dosha goes out of balance, it disturbs the digestive fire, impairs metabolism and creates a toxic physiological environment. This in turn leads to a failure in converting digested food into new tissues. Instead, the essence of digested food accumulates in the body as fat. Apart from high calorie diet and a sedentary lifestyle, some factors like genetic predisposition, hormonal disturbances and certain disorders like thyroid disturbances could also be causative factors for weight gain. The first step in ayurvedic treatment for weight loss in Kerala is determining the underlying reasons for weight gain.
Ayurvedic Treatment for Weight Loss
What is the approach adopted in the ayurvedic treatment for weight loss ?
The main reason why you are gaining excessive weight is the increase in kapha dosha and the subsequent disturbance of digestive fire and physiological processes in your body. Therefore, ayurvedic treatment for weight loss has three main goals: (a) to reduce the already accumulated fat deposits and achieve slimming (b) to correct appetite, digestion and metabolism (c) to restore the healthy balance of doshas and prevent further unhealthy accumulation of fat.
What are the treatment modalities used in ayurveda hospitals in Kerala for weight loss ?
Ayurvedic treatment for weight loss in Kerala uses a combination of four different treatment modalities:
Medicines: Medicines are used internally as well as in external therapies to correct metabolism.
Therapies: Therapeutic messages, sweating techniques and cleansing procedures are used to stimulate fat metabolism, reduce excess fat deposits and expel toxins.
Diet and lifestyle modifications: In order to achieve weight loss goals, it is important to eliminate foods and habits which increase kapha dosha, so during treatment you will need to stick to the diet prescribed by your ayurvedic physician.
Yoga, pranayama and meditation: Training in specific yoga, pranayama and meditation techniques that have the power to correct and support metabolism is a part of treatment.
What are the different therapies used in the ayurvedic treatment for weight loss in Kerala?
Ayurvedic treatment for weight loss in Kerala includes various procedures to pacify kapha dosha and reduce fat tissue in the body:
Powder massage / Udwarthana : This is a very effective therapy to reduce fat deposits beneath the skin. In this therapy, medicated herbal powders in dry or moist paste form are massaged on to the whole body and especially those areas with excess fat, using forceful upward strokes to create friction that opens the pores in the skin, increases heat in tissues, improves blood circulation and stimulates fat metabolism to facilitate elimination of fat from the body. After the massage you may be given a steaming therapy.
Whole body steaming: This is usually done after udvartana massage. Patients sits comfortably inside a steaming chamber, with only the head outside the chamber. The medicines used in the udvartana massage percolate into the tissues beneath the skin, clears tissue channels, liquefies fat and eliminates toxins and fat from the body.
Kashaya dhara: A therapy that induces perspiration by pouring warm medicated herbal decoctions over the whole body. The decoction is rubbed in to facilitate elimination of toxins and promote fat metabolism. It has the added benefit of relieving muscle tension and curing aches and pains.
Dhanyamla dhara: Another effective perspiration inducing therapy using a specially formulated and fermented mix of cereals and millets. The fermented liquid is maintained at a certain temperature and poured all over the body in a prescribed fashion to induce sweating, eliminate toxins and stimulate fat metabolism. A very relaxing therapy that also has the added benefits of improving skin complexion and relieving any inflammation.
Purgation / Virechanam : A panchakarma treatment of inducing purgation by giving medicines orally. Used for cleansing the body by flushing out toxins.
Medicated enema / Kashaya Vasti: Yet another powerful panchakarma detoxification therapy. In this procedure, herbal decoctions which have the capacity to scrape toxins off the body are given through the anus.
Not all therapies are required for all patients. The ayurvedic physician determines the best choice of therapies for each patient based on their clinical assessment.
What are the different stages in the Kerala ayurvedic treatment for weight loss?
Ayurvedic treatment for weight loss is done in three stages:
The first stage of treatment is the correction of metabolic fire in all tissues. This is mainly achieved through internal medicines. Along with this, the body is prepared for complete detoxification. This is done through a process called snehapana where medicated ghee is given to extract the toxins lodged in deep tissues and make them available for elimination from the body.
In the second stage of treatment, the main focus is to reduce the existing excessive fat deposits in the body. In this stage, various internal medicines and external therapies like udvartana, steaming etc are used to stimulate fat metabolism, liquefy fat and eliminate it. Also, appropriate panchakarma treatments are used to expel the toxins extracted from deep tissues. Diet and lifestyle modification and health education to prevent future excessive weight gain is also part of this stage.
In the final stage of the treatment, the goal is to support the body to sustain healthy metabolism and prevent future accumulation of excessive fat. Maintaining healthy metabolism requires a multi pronged approach - medicines are prescribed for 2 to 3 months to support metabolism, diet and lifestyle modification is advised, yoga poses and pranayama techniques that can support metabolism and prevent fat accumulation are taught.
How successful is the Kerala ayurvedic treatment for weight loss?
The results of ayurvedic treatment for weight loss vary person to person and depend on factors like chronicity, the reason for weight gain etc. Initial loss of weight is usually quick and a person may lose 5 -10 kg (11 to 22 lbs) with 3 to 4 weeks of treatment. Ayurvedic treatment for weight loss also helps you have a long and healthy life by improving your metabolic fitness and preventing many life threatening complications of obesity. When you are obese, toxins block tissues and the resulting dosha imbalance leads to quick digestion of food, so you feel hungry all the time. This makes you binge which leads to an accumulation of calories and increased blood sugar making you diabetic in the due course. There is also a very high chance of an increase of cholesterol and triglycerides due to the improper metabolism, thus making you prone to heart related problems and increasing your risk of a stroke. In females, improper metabolism causes hormonal changes and proneness to develop polycystic ovarian disease. In males, there is an increased risk of bone related diseases such as osteoporosis and infertility. So apart from reducing fat deposits and improving your looks, ayurvedic treatment for weight loss prevents all the above complications by restoring correct digestion and metabolism.
Does Kerala ayurvedic treatment for weight loss give better results than bariatric surgery?
Yes, certainly! Bariatric surgery is a method by which a part of the stomach is surgically removed in order to prevent the person from eating more. There have been reports of long term side effects such as bowel obstruction, dumping syndrome, nausea, diarrhoea, vomiting etc. with such surgeries. Ayurvedic treatment for weight loss in Kerala, on the other hand, is natural and restores your healthy appetite and healthy metabolism. It does not bring about any complications as seen in bariatric surgery. Besides, weight loss treatment in Kerala gives long lasting results while improving the person's overall health.
Ayurvedic Diet & Lifestyle Advice
What diet is recommended in ayurvedic treatment for weight loss?
Ayurveda considers obesity a condition where kapha dosha is aggravated, so the basic dietary guideline in ayurvedic treatment for weight loss is to reduce intake of kapha increasing foods and include kapha pacifying foods.
Reduce kapha aggravating foods: Foods which bring about increase in kapha contribute to obesity. Kapha dosha and fat tissue go hand in hand and these two usually increase in the body with foods which are predominantly sweet, sour and salty (such as confectionery, chocolates, milk and milk products such as cheese, curd, yogurt, pastries, sweetened carbonated beverages, ice creams), those which are heavy, oily, cold and sluggish in nature (such as french fries, fried meat) and foods which are rich and overloaded with cheese and butter (such as pizzas, burgers etc).
Follow a kapha pacifying diet: It is important that you follow a diet which has the opposite qualities of kapha dosha. This means that your food should have a dry, light, hot and sharp nature. Astringent, bitter and pungent tastes are recommended and so celery, garlic, onions and cabbage can be included liberally in your diet. Peas, lettuce, turnips, leeks, asparagus, cherry etc can alleviate the kapha dosha and fat tissue in the body
How do you modify your daily diet after ayurvedic treatment for weight loss in Kerala?
You will lose weight and get trim after your ayurvedic treatment in Kerala for weight loss, but in order to continue looking good and feeling good, you must make some changes to your diet. Before you leave for home, make sure you have a detailed discussion with your ayurvedic physician on your daily diet and take their advice on how you can make healthy changes. Rice and other foods which are rich in carbohydrates can be a major cause for obesity and diabetes. Bamboo rice, known for its low glycemic index and richness in vitamin B but does not contain fat is an ideal replacement for regular rice. Millets like Kodo Millet (koovaragu) and Little Millet (chaama) are yet another replacement for rice as they are low in glycemic index and have high fiber content. Barley is also good as it is rich in fiber content and gives a feeling of fullness.
These can be complemented with lentils such as horse gram, masoor dal, channa dal, mung dal etc which gives a feeling of fullness and is low in fat content. Regular vegetable oils can be replaced with mustard or gingelly oil for cooking. Green leafy vegetables, eggplant, drumsticks, broccoli, cauliflower can be used liberally. Honey is highly advised in kapha predominant conditions like obesity and it’s ideally good to start your day with lemon water and honey.
What is a good lifestyle to follow after Kerala ayurvedic treatment for weight loss?
After you complete your Kerala ayurvedic treatment for weight loss, in order to prevent future excessive weight gain you need to follow a lifestyle that does not increase kapha dosha. Include moderate exercise in your daily routine, but never over exercise since it can lead to wear and tear of joints and injuries. Develop good sleep habits. Sleeping during the day increases kapha in the body and tends to make you obese, so avoid day sleep. If you feel sleepy, take a stroll or have a power nap for 15 minutes in a reclining seat rather than lying flat on a bed especially immediately after food. Similarly it’s very important that at night you go to bed early and at a regular time and not stay awake during the night as this can disrupt the dosha balance.
Ayurvedic tips for weight loss
- Replace high glycemic index foods like rice, pasta, instant oatmeal, corn flakes, puffed rice or bread with low glycemic index foods like bamboo rice, millets, steel cut oats, quinoa, buckwheat, barley, whole wheat etc.
- Choose light foods like cooked vegetables, a moderate amount of fresh fruits, light small meals and black or green teas. Reduce heavy foods like red meat, cheese, deep fried foods and coffee.
- Avoid overeating and eating full stomach
- Have warm and freshly cooked food. Minimise refrigerated and reheated leftovers
- Include ginger, garlic, chillies, cinnamon, mustard, black pepper, cloves and turmeric in your diet
- Avoid iced water and cold food. Drink warm water. Cold water tends to cause contraction of muscles and blood vessels leading to sluggish digestion
- Avoid alcohol and quit smoking
- Eat food with minimum oil and avoid fried foods
- Avoid incompatible food combinations like honey and ghee combined in equal amounts, honey and meat, curd and meat, milk and fish etc as they produce ama / toxins in the body
- Eat only when hungry and only after the previous food is digested.
- Always eat mindfully and not while watching TV or doing any other activities.
- Avoid drinking water within half an hour of a meal (either before or after)
- On waking up in the morning, have a glass of warm water with a tsp of honey and half a lime squeezed into it.
Obesity has been looming as a major public health threat world over and ayurvedic treatment in Kerala for weight loss is today the treatment of choice to lose the excess fat and regain one’s healthy body weight. In most cases, obesity is the result of one’s wrong diet and lifestyle habits which disturb dosha balance in the body and hamper metabolism. Over consumption of kapha dosha increasing foods and lack of physical activity are two main reasons. A person is considered obese if their BMI is above 30. Obesity can lead to life threatening diseases like diabetes, heart diseases, stroke and even some types of cancer.
Ayurvedic treatment for weight loss in Kerala is highly effective, gives long-term results and prevents the possible complications of obesity. Ayurvedic approach to treating obesity involves correcting the metabolism in the body and restoring the balance of doshas. Weight loss treatment in Kerala aims at slimming and improving fat metabolism. It is most effective when taken for 3 to 4 weeks as per doctors’ advice and it includes panchakarma, external treatment procedures, diet regulations, pranayama, yoga and meditation. To sustain the results of ayurvedic treatment for weight loss in Kerala, ayurveda advises one to regulate eating kapha producing foods (such as fried and oily foods, carbohydrate rich foods, and those foods which are predominantly sweet, salty and sour) as well as lead an active life, thus reducing the accumulation of fat and calories in the body.
Is ayurvedic treatment for weight loss in Kerala a long term solution?
Yes. Ayurvedic treatment for weight loss in Kerala is a long term solution, because digestion and metabolism are corrected and body begins to burn fat effectively. Treatment results can be sustained for the long term provided you follow the diet and lifestyle prescribed by the physician.
Does panchakarma treatment in Kerala reduce belly fat?
Yes, apart from treatments and medicines aimed at reducing overall body fat, there are specific ayurvedic therapeutic procedures to reduce fat in problem areas like abdomen.
I have diabetes and I am on medications. Can I undergo ayurvedic treatment for weight loss?
Yes, you may undergo ayurvedic treatment for weight loss even if you are diabetic and on medications. However, not all the treatments suitable for obesity may be suited for an obese patient with diabetes.
Despite trying diet modifications, I still gain weight. What has to be done?
Diet modification alone does not help you lose weight; it is important to know that one gains excessive weight due to problems in metabolism. Correction of metabolism along with a proper diet as advised by your physician and regular exercise will definitely help you lose weight. It’s equally important to know what you eat, since some diets can harm you, if not under proper guidance.
Is taking an only protein diet helpful in losing weight?
Ayurveda does not believe that taking just one kind of nutrient is a healthy way to lose weight Even if you lose weight, you may develop some health problems later. It is always good to have a balanced diet, where you have all that is needed for the proper functioning of the body. Hence it is ideal to have a dietitian or your treating physician prescribe the diet suitable for your body type.