Globally, 1 in 10 individual is affected by severe kidney disease and nearly 850 million individuals worldwide are estimated to have kidney diseases due to several causes but although it’s scary to be diagnosed with kidney failure, Ayurvedic experts insist that if you find out in the early stages of the disease, there are certain steps you can take to prolong kidney functions with Ayurveda. According to them, if you work closely with an Ayurvedic expert, chances are good as you can still enjoy a healthy quality of life despite kidney disease.
Although there are many causes of kidney failure, there are some recommendations that, when followed, can help a person delay kidney failure, which leads to dialysis or kidney transplant. In an interview with HT Lifestyle, Dr Varun Koul, VP – Medical Directorate at Glamyo Health, shared, “Patients with Chronic Renal Failure (CRF) have damaged kidneys that become incapable of filtering waste products like salt, excess water, urea etc, out of the circulatory system resulting in metabolic toxicity. In such patients, an artificial substitute mechanism called dialysis is performed to take over the filtration role of the kidneys.”
He further stated, “Even though Ayurvedic doctors have traditionally used herbs like Varuna and Gokshura to treat kidney failure, it is only recently that these practices have been validated scientifically. Studies have shown a statistically significant improvement in Blood Urea and Creatinine levels of Chronic Renal Failure patients treated with Ayurvedic drugs for one month. Considering the fact that regular dialysis sessions over a long period can be financially draining for a vast majority of Indians, Ayurveda treatments can be an affordable yet effective alternative.”
The two main causes of kidney failure are diabetes and high blood pressure but according to Dr Puru Dhawan, Kidney Expert at SRIAAS, these diseases can be controlled — or prevented — with Ayurveda to help prolong kidney function.
Diabetes and Prolonging Kidney Function
Dr Puru Dhawan revealed that diabetic patients need to keep their blood glucose levels in an acceptable range and take all prescribed Ayurvedic medicines since certain Ayurvedic medicines for high blood sugar levels can protect the kidneys of people with diabetes.
High Blood Pressure and Prolonged Kidney Function
Dr Puru Dhawan stated, “High blood pressure is the second leading cause of kidney failure and end-stage renal disease (ESRD). Patients with high blood pressure, also known as hypertension, should take their Ayurvedic medicines as prescribed. You might experience certain symptoms commonly reported by patients who were on dialysis. Some struggle with fatigue, feel tired and exhausted all the time when on dialysis.”
He pointed out, “Patients with renal disease on dialysis are at higher risk of developing cardiovascular disease. The primary reason for cardiovascular disease is caused due to uremic toxins that don’t get removed with dialysis. Low blood pressure (hypotension), blood clots, hernia, bloating and weight gain are the most common side effects of dialysis. During dialysis, some people experience muscle cramps, usually in the lower leg. Thankfully, Ayurveda can help!”
He gushed, “Ayurveda helps by treating damaged kidney tissues and reducing the frequency of dialysis. Thus, Ayurvedic medications have the potential to manage kidney failure from all stages of the condition. Ayurvedic procedure aims at curing the root cause of the disease rather than suppressing the symptoms. The treatment is carried out with the support of herbal medicines, a specialized diet and lifestyle changes. Remember, there are no quick fixes for such diseases in Ayurveda. To prevent or treat conditions like kidney disease, you must first rectify your lifestyle. Several formulations and practices are recommended for the specific purpose of maintaining kidney health, increasing GFR rates and stopping dialysis.”
Asserting that Ayurveda does recommend natural ways but emphasizes the wholesome and balanced diet above all else, he advised, “Restrictive fad diets are not in keeping with Ayurveda’s tenets. Instead, modifying dietary choices, increasing your water intake and using certain Ayurvedic herbs can help to keep up your kidney health. Herbal medicines can help patients to stop dialysis if they follow the basic principles of Ayurvedic medicine for their kidney damage. The best thing you can do is follow healthy dietary and lifestyle recommendations. Cut down your intake of highly processed foods, which are loaded with sugar and sodium. Drink adequate water and increase levels of physical activity. Both unhealthy food choices and a sedentary lifestyle can increase the risk of kidney disease, with obesity being a significant contributing factor.”