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Jaundice

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Definition

Jaundice is a condition where the skin and the whites of the eyes take on a yellow tint. Modern medicine does not consider it to be a disease but a symptom of liver disorders like liver infection, gallstones and cirrhosis of liver. In Ayurveda, Jaundice is known as Kamala.

Causes

Increased intake of oily, spicy, sour, salty, alkaline, penetrating and very hot foods; alcohol; and sesame oil cause Pitta (Ayurvedic humor representing Fire) aggravation. The aggravated Pitta then impairs the blood and the muscle tissue of the liver, causing blockage in the channels of the liver and thus Pitta (in the form of bile) is thrown back into the blood leading to discoloration of the eyes and skin. Sleeping in the daytime, excessive physical work, overindulgence in sexual activity, suppressing the natural urges of the body, and psychological factors like lust, fear, anger, and stress can also be causative factors in cases of Jaundice.

Symptoms

There is yellowish discoloration of the eyes, skin, mouth, and nails. Stool and urine are dark yellow or reddish reddish-colored. In obstructive jaundice, the stool is white-colored. Other symptoms can be indigestion, flatulence, weakness, lassitude, lack of appetite, burning sensation in the body, low-grade fever, drowsiness, loss of libido, excessive thirst, etc.

Ayurvedic View

Ayurvedic treatment of Jaundice involves pacifying aggravated body energies using herbs that stimulate the function of the liver and increase the flow of bile in the bile duct. Digestion is also restored with the help of a customized diet plan to ensure efficient metabolism.

Diet & Lifestyle Advice

  • Avoid hot, spicy, oily, and heavy foods; eat a vegetarian diet.
  • Avoid refined flour, polished rice (white rice), mustard oil, mustard seeds, asafetida, peas, canned and preserved foods, cakes, pastries, chocolates, alcoholic beverages, and aerated drinks.
  • Increase intake of whole-wheat flour, brown rice or parboiled rice, mangoes, bananas, tomatoes, spinach, potatoes, Indian gooseberries (amla), grapes, radishes, lemons, dried dates, raisins, almonds, and cardamom.
  • Avoid unnecessary exercise and stressful conditions such as anxiety or anger.
  • Take complete rest.
  • Avoid working under the sun or near boilers and furnaces.

Some Home Remedies

  • Mix 1 teaspoon of roasted barley powder to 1 cup of water. Add 1 teaspoon of honey to it and have this twice a day.
  • Add 1 teaspoon paste of basil leaves to a cup of radish juice. Have this juice twice a day for 15-20 days.
  • Have a cup of sugarcane juice with ½ teaspoon of basil leaves paste twice a day. Juice should be prepared in hygienic conditions so as to avoid contamination from dust or other substances.
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