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Ayurveda and Diabetes (Prameha)


Let's talk about diabetes and the ancient wisdom of Ayurveda!

According to Ayurvedic knowledge those children who are born with diabetes/prameha or acquire it at a young age is deemed as genetic/heriditary or sahaja and non-curable (asadhya). Other types of prameha caused by improper diet and lifestyle practices (Type 2) are both manageable (yapya) and curable (sadhya).

The Sanskrit word prameha translates to excessive urine (a.k.a. polyuria) which is one of the warning signs or purvarūpa of diabetes and if caught at the right time can prevent further disease manifestation. Each disease may have signs to watch for when doshas (energies) become imbalanced and are expressed. It takes a very observant person to recognize these small and subtle changes that can occur with the body.

The disease of prameha is primarily a kapha imbalance but other doshas can play a role in cause or may even be imbalanced during the time of diagnosis.

The types of prameha are described by the smell, color and texture of urine and other urinary findings. In all persons untreated who have diabetes there will be a sweet taste (madhura) in the urine, a viscosity or thickness and an increase in quantity of urine or a need to evacuate urine more regularly throughout the day. Other urine components may be present. Urine analysis is a key practice in examination of diseases or vyadhi pariksha done by a studied vaidya. I am sure it is still done today where lab testing is not readily available. (I will talk more about this in another post.)

According to Ayurveda there are 20 types of diabetes which are caused by certain prevalent doshic imbalances. With each type there is a classification according to urine.

10 Kapha (earth/water) ~caused by kapha

udaka meha | clear urine, white color, cool, odorless

ikshu meha | like juice of sugarcane

sāndra meha | dense or thick when kept overnight

surā meha | resemblence to beer with clear top and tick bottom

pista meha | thick urine, white color, hairs on body stand stiff

śukra meha | urine is like semen

sikatā meha | passes particles resembling sand

śīta meha | sweet, dry, cold

śanair meha | passes urine very slowly

Lālāla meha | urine contains more slimy threads like saliva

6 Pitta (fire) ~caused by pitta

kshara meha | smell, color, taste, touch like kshara (alkali preparation)

kalā meha | urine has black in color

nīla meha | urine has indigo color

rakta meha | urine is foul, hot, slightly salty and resembles blood

manjishta meha | urine is foul and resembles manjishta color (reddish)

haridrā meha | urine is pungent, bitter resembles turmeric color (orange/yellow)

4 Vata (wind) ~caused by vata

vasā meha | urine is mixed with muscle fat

majjā meha | person passes marrow in urine

hasti meha | passes urine like elephant in rut; continuous and without force mixed with lymph and with obstruction

madhu meha | urine resembles honey in taste

Thank you for reading today and I look forward to sharing more with you. Check back tomorrow for another post about diabetes/prameha.

Lots of love,


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