AARC Health, Jagriti Vihar, Meerut - 250004
When food is not digested properly, due to low jathragni, and most of the food is not converted into nutritious juice required for the sustenance of the body, it forms the mucus like substance which is ‘apakv ahar’. Very little of this substance gets converted in nutritious juice while a large part of it is converted into waste products. This excess of waste causes aggravation of vata, which disrupts the normal functioning of the digestive canal thus producing (ama) in the body. Ama is the toxin caused by undigested food. When dhatus (tissues) are produced from this defective nutritious juice, there is an aggravation of kapha and pitta in them. This results in bad quality of tissues/organs and low immunity.
Signs of proper digestion
No acid eructation. Feeling of strength and energy to work again. No difficulty in passing urine or stool. Feeling of lightness in the body, despite eating. Feeling hungry again at the right time of the next meal.
Signs of improper digestion
Lethargy Heaviness in the body and stomach. Vertigo. Constipation or diarrhea. Reversed direction of vata. Distention.
Eating before the earlier meal is digested, eating too much, eating heavy foods, eating irregularly, eating very hot or very cold food, eating too much drying food, eating without giving a thought to quantity and the compatibility of the food, eating food which is not suited to the climate/season or body is often responsible for indigestion.
Holding irrepressible urges, drinking too much water, working late nights or not getting proper rest, mental factors like Anxiety/ fear/anger/sickness/sorrow etc also contribute in causing indigestion.
Due to improper lifestyle/diet and mental causes (listed above), jathragni becomes low and the food is not digested properly because of aggravation of kapha and vata dosha. The water content increases and dilutes the digestive juices and they can not act properly on the food, which causes indigestion.
Types of Ajirna:
Amajirna: When there is excess kapha accumulation in the stomach. Digestive acids or pachak pitta is then diluted and its potency is reduced, resulting in inappropriate digestion.
Vidagdhajirna: Due to aggravation of pitta, the acids helpful in digestion are released in a larger quantity than required and acidify the food present in the stomach. The acidified food does not get digested properly.
Vishtabdhajirna: This situation is caused due to aggravation of vata. This results in either drying up or improper release of the digestive juices, causing only a part of the food be digested. The patient has symptoms like pricking pain, bloating, unnatural abdominal sounds and false urge to pass motions.
Rasseshajirna: Rasseshajirna is the situation when, after the digestion of the maximum food, some undigested matter remains in the nutritious juice. Patient feels heaviness in abdomen and does not feel hungry again at the right time of the meal again.
General guidelines for diet:
Strict attention to diet is essential for recovery.
Tips for improving digestion:
Fasting is very effective treatment for dyspepsia as it helps to digest the ama and digestive system gets the required rest as it is not loaded with the food. After fasting, when patient is hungry, he should take light foods like mung dal soup, boiled vegetables like squash, bitter gourd, amla, radish and spices like cumin, ginger, black pepper, cilantro, fenugreek etc. Herbs used are hing (assafoetida), chitrak, vacha, Piper longum, Terminalia chebula, Emblica officinalis , Adhatoda vasica etc.