Ayurveda has always connected joint pain to Vata dosha. While there may be other contributing factors to the disorder, such as the accumulation of ama, an imbalance in Vata dosha is always associated with arthritis and joint pain. One of the most important Ayurvedic recommendations for balancing Vata is regularity in routine: eating at the same, exercising at the same time, and going to bed at the same time every day.
Now modern science lends strength to this seemingly simple Ayurvedic “fix”.
A new study from Manchester University concludes that regular mealtimes, exercise times and bed times could help keep arthritis at bay. Apparently there are tiny biological clocks inside our cartilage cells that control thousands of genes that are involved in keeping in keeping our cartilage healthy and strong.
The most common form of arthritis is caused by wear and tear of the cartilage that helps our joints withstand the strain of lifting, kneeling, bending, gripping, etc. When the little biological clocks in the joints are working properly, the genes are timed to be more or less active at different times of the day and night. This allows daily repair to happen in progressive and sequential steps.
As we age, our biological clocks in our joints can stop working properly and the repair process no longer gets carried out properly. The lead scientist on the Manchester University study, Dr. Quin-Jung Meng, found that the simple act of keeping a regular daily routine actually helped keep the cartilage clocks working properly, allowing them to do their job in supporting self-repair of the cartilage.
And the study concluded that not only can a regular routine delay the onset of arthritis, it could also help relieve pain in those already suffering from arthritis.
The researchers noted the importance of understanding the role that the body’s circadian rhythm (our in-built body clock) has in maintaining healthy joint tissue and how disruptions to this process could contribute to the development of osteoarthritis.
In many cases, the wear and tear in the joints is aggravated by the accumulation of ama. When ama, the toxic residue from poorly digested food, enters the blood stream, it can build up in weak areas of the body, including the joints. To remove ama once it has settled into the joints and tissues, the traditional purification and detoxification treatments, called Panchakarma, can be very helpful. These treatments help bring the aggravated doshas and accumulated ama back into the digestive tract for elimination. Once ama has been cleared, a program of prevention can be recommended. This will include life-style, diet and herbal recommendations that will help keep Vata in balance while supporting proper digestion so that ama no longer accumulated in the body.
For more information on programs for arthritis at The Raj Ayurveda Health Spa, visit the web site: