Last month was celebrated as cancer awareness month. There are many cases of diagnosed and undiagnosed cancer surrounded by us and concern is fast growing. Awareness about causes, screening and risk is very essential and can also lead to people making healthier lifestyle choices.Poor lifestyle, longer working hours, increasingly stressful lives, smoking, alcohol consumption, use of contraception, are all contributing factors in occurrence of different cancers.
Cancer is a generic term for a large group of diseases that can affect any part of the body. Other terms used are malignant tumors and neoplasms. One defining feature of cancer is the rapid creation of abnormal cells that grow beyond their usual boundaries, and which can then invade adjoining parts of the body and spread to other organs.
In Ayurveda, cancer is described as inflammatory or non-inflammatory swelling and mentioned either as ‘Granthi’ (minor neoplasm) or ‘Arbuda’ (major neoplasm) in Sushrut Samhita. Aggravated Vata and Kapha doshas along with Rakta, Mansa, Meda vikruti are common pathological changes seen in cancer. Ayurved also focuses on the equilibrium of all Dosha, Dhatu and Mala for prophylaxis angle.
In this new era, we are exposed to lots of chemicals, hybrid food items,pollution and wrong lifestyle. It is badly affecting our Quality Of Life but still maintaining or balancing metabolic health, stress quotient proper is very essential for taking care of equilibrium. This equilibrium can be well maintained.
Alarming numbers of Cancers according to World Health Organization (WHO)
● Approx. about 70% of deaths from cancer occur in low- and middle-income countries
●Around one-third of deaths from cancer are due to tobacco use, high body mass index, alcohol consumption, low fruit and vegetable intake, and lack of regular physical activity
● The most common type of cancers are breast (2.26 million cases), lung (2.21 million cases), colon- rectum (1.93 million cases), prostate (1.41 million cases), skin (non-melanoma) (1.20 million cases), and stomach (1.09 million cases)
Here are some keys for cancer awareness and good Quality Of Life –
1. Early diagnosis –
When identified early, cancer is more likely to respond to treatment and can result in a greater probability of survival and less morbidity, as well as less expensive treatment. Significant improvements can be made in the lives of cancer patients by detecting cancer early and avoiding delays in care. Vigilance about every symptom, early diagnostic test and proper treatment approach is very important to avoid late complications.
2. Periodic screening of risk group
Many times genetic, hereditary, previous medical histories in case of uterine cancers are linked with occurrence of cancer.
Identifying the risk groups by knowing family history, other causative factors like exposure to chemicals, radiations etc is key in screening programs. Periodic diagnostic test and check is must in risk groups.
Special diagnostic tests like PAP smear, HPV, mammography etc should be included in routine check up after a certain age. Awareness about self-examination of breasts is very important for every lady. So identifying and screening the risk group is very important.
3. Awareness about causative factors
Tobacco, cigarettes, alcohol consumption, exposure to UV lights, certain chemicals, radiation, increased weight, diabetes, wrong food habits, synthetic food additives, hybrid food items, food incompatibilities are some underlying causes of cancer. Avoiding such causes and following a healthy lifestyle is very important. Maintaining healthy metabolism and balancing equilibrium between all doshas is very important.
4. Proper treatment and palliative care
A correct cancer diagnosis is essential for appropriate and effective treatment because every cancer type requires a specific treatment regimen. Treatment usually includes radiotherapy, chemotherapy and/or surgery. Determining the goals of treatment is an important first step. The primary goal is generally to cure cancer or to considerably prolong life. Improving the patient’s quality of life is also an important goal. This can be achieved by support for the patient’s physical, psychosocial and spiritual well-being and palliative care in terminal stages of cancer.
Principles Of Ayurveda regarding food habits, lifestyle modifications and remedies like panchakarma proving very effective and promising. Ayurveda is helpful in both treatment and in palliative care.
So, in this cancer awareness week, let’s come together to understand and implement steps to keep life away from cancer.
Know how to implement and adopt the perfect health regimen with Nadi Tarangini. Visit us on www.naditarangini.com
Dr. Gayatri Kulkarni – Mulye (MD Ayurved)
Vaidya Tejaswini Bhale – Borse (Ayurveda Physician)
Shruti Kulkarni (Clinical Nutritionist)
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