According to WHO Cancer is 2nd leading cause of death globally and is responsible for an estimated 9.6 million deaths in 2018. Around 1 among 6 people die because of Cancer. Some people didn’t know they have it. And those who knew couldn’t afford treatment. Reason could be an unhealthy and unnatural lifestyle full of stress which leads to such kinds of illness.
Scientists are trying their best to fight Cancer. However the journey hasn’t been so smooth. Even if the causes are well known, research for effective and affordable treatment is still being done. The known treatment is usually the practice of expensive chemo therapy, radio therapy and use of chemically derived drugs which results in all sorts of toxic side-effects.
Ayurveda’s Role in Cancer Treatment
Ayurveda is an ancient system of life (ayuh) knowledge (veda) practiced in India for ages. It says a human should live, eat, breathe and treat its body in the most natural way. Ayurveda is the age old Indian practice of using Plants and Herbs with remarkable medical benefits to care for your body. Ayurveda’s Role in Cancer Treatment is being seen as an Alternative Method to cure cancer. There are no proven evidences of Ayurvedic medicines curing Cancer once and for all, but it sure has created a lot of hopes in the Medical Community.
The main goal of Ayurvedic therapy is to find the ultimate cause of an illness. In Ayurvedic concept, according to ‘Rishi Charaka’ and ‘Sushruta Samhita’ cancer is described as inflammatory or non-inflammatory swelling and mentioned either as ‘Granthi’ (minor neoplasm) or ‘Arbuda‘ (major neoplasm). There are three ‘Doshas’ or body function systems in a human body. The Vata or air, the Pitta or fire and the Kapha or water. In tumors the three systems get out of control, a condition which is also known as Tridosha and they lose mutual coordination that causes tissue damage, resulting in such critical condition as cancer. Tridosha causes excessive metabolic incoordinations resulting in proliferation.
Many herbs identified from Ayurvedic Scriptures and documents are under clinical studies and being investigated phytochemically to understand their cancer fighting potential. These are some plants and herbs having scientific evidence of anticancer property. Some them are listed below:
- Andrographis paniculata
- Annona atemoya
- Phyllanthus niruri
- Piper longum
- Podophyllum hexandrum
- Tinospora cordifolia
- Semecarpus anacardium
- Vitis vinifera
- Baliospermum montanum
- Madhuca indica
- Pandanus odoratissimum
- Pterospermum acerifolium
- Raphanus sativus
- Barleria prionitis
- Prosopis cineraria
- Amorphophallus campanulatus
- Oroxylum indicum
- Basella rubra
- Flacourtia romantchi
- Moringa oleifera
- Ficus benghalensis
- Curcuma domestica
- Allium sativum
- Calotropis gigantea
- Datura metel
- Hygrophila spinosa
- Juniperus indica
- Nigella sativa
- Picrorhiza kurroa
- Rubia cordifolia and many more.
During the past two decades over an estimated 30% of drugs used in cancer treatment are directly derived from the above mentioned plants. Below are some of the plant-derived compounds approved for anti-cancer use:
Prevent Cancer with Ayurveda
As we it has been mentioned earlier, an unnatural, unhealthy and stressful lifestyle could lead someone to succumb to such a dangerous disease. It is believed that prevention is better than cure and Ayurveda provides the path to a healthy lifestyle. Ayurveda is all about achieving a balance between mind, body and consciousness. And to achieve this it encourages daily exercise or yoga, meditation and a healthy diet. This, in itself, is a great way to prevent the onset of many life style diseases other than cancer as well.
Ayurveda recommends a number of herbs, plants and fruits for preventing cancer and there are a growing number of scientific studies that backs this ancient knowledge. Here are some common herbs which can be found around you, in your kitchen, in your garden or backyard or your nearest super market that have anti-cancer properties.
Holy Basil (Tulsi)
- Known for its healing powers
- Used for improving immunity and fighting stress
- Possesses anti-inflammatory, analgesic, anti-diabetic and anti-stress properties
- Phytochemicals present in Tulsi prevent lung, liver, oral and skin cancers by increasing the antioxidant activity, altering gene expressions, killing cancer cells and preventing the spread of cancer to other cells
- Has anti-oxidant and anti-inflammatory properties
- Has cancer preventive properties
- Decreases inflammation of the colon
There are in fact many other herbs, plants and fruits in Ayurveda that have anti-cancer properties. The above mentioned are some known and easily available substances that one should add in their daily intake with other foods every day or at regular intervals.
We highly suggest you to practice regular exercise or Yoga. Be more active and agile. An active lifestyle will help you transport all the nutrients to every single cell in your body. This will not only make them stronger to unwanted bacterial attacks but also filter out bad pathogens in your body.
While research is still going on to dig deeper into the prevention and cure of cancer, you should not forget to take all measures to protect yourself. The healthier you live, the less risk you will have to falling to such illnesses. We also suggest you to get regular check-ups at our nearest hospital or clinics because the earlier we detect the cancerous cells the easier it is to treat.