Tuesday, 3 January 2012

Papaya in Pregnancy

Is it safe to eat papaya in pregnancy? A common belief among peoples in most part of the world that eating papaya is dangerous while pregnant. Studies have found that the consumption of ripe papaya during pregnancy poses no significant danger while unripe or semi-ripe papaya could induce spasmodic contraction of the uterine muscles similar to oxytocin and prostaglandin F, harming the fetus.

According to Ayurveda, the Kapha dosha is responsible for the stability and growth of the fetus. Unripe papaya reduces Kapha and enhances Vata and Pitha, and hence is harmful to pregnancy, especially in earlier stages. Unripe papaya, rich with pungent properties, could act as an emmenagogue(herbs which stimulate blood flow in the pelvic area and uterus; some stimulate menstruation), and induce bleeding. This could cause abortion.

The pungent properties have systemic effect of an anticoagulant. The penetrative property found in seeds and latex also provokes bleeding, making unripe papaya, which has a lot of latex, an emmengogue. (However, the same property makes it effective against amenorrhoea which is the absence of a menstrual period).

However, consumption of papaya enhances production of breast milk and hence it can be given to nursing mothers as salad or juice. It can also be given to a mother who is debilitated due to labour. The recommended quantity is 100-150ml of the juice once in two days. It also helps purify breast milk during lactation.

Sunday, 1 January 2012

Sleep Disorders-Insomnia Simple Tips for Good Sleep

The mental and physical relaxation with closed eyes is called sleep. Infants need about 16 hours a day, teenagers need about 9 hours a day and for adults , 7-8 hours of sleep at night seems to be best amount of sleep. For leading a healthy life one should go to bed early and wake up early. Now due to the modern trend of life sleep disorder is common among peoples. This leads to stress, depression, indigestion, reduces memory power, and even leads to obesity. This causes daytime drowsiness, which will affect the whole life. Risk of motor vehicle accidents is increased among those people because of fatigue.

Simple tips for good sleep
  • Don't watch movies or hear songs that are violent before retiring to bed.
  • Drinking a cup of warm milk before going to bed helps bring on a peaceful sleep. Warm milk will make you active and cold may cause indigestion.
  • Buffalo's milk is an excellent inducer of sleep.
  • Massaging the soles mildly will improve the sleep.
  • Create a pleasant atmosphere where you sleep.
  • Listen to melodious soft music before going to bed. Fast music aggravates the mood and disables sound sleep.
  • Doing meditation before going to bed induces good sleep and is also good for mental health.
  • Cherries are good for mental fatigue and stress, both of which can contribute to insomnia. Eating 10-15 cherries daily may help relieve this and help you sleep.
  • A hot bath or shower at bedtime helps to promote sound sleep.
  • A cup of chamomile tea at bedtime is truly beneficial for inducing sleep.
  • One of the simplest and the most effective ways to induce sleep is to rub some oil on the scalp and the soles of the feet before going to bed. You can use sesame oil, brahmi oil, or jatamamsi oil, and massage gently for a few minutes. Slightly warming the oil before applying is more effective.
  • A fine paste of nutmeg powder mixed with an equal amount of ghee can be applied around your eyes and on your forehead before bed to get a good sleep.
  • Disturbed sleep are often due to worries and anxieties that keep the mind agitated at night. As said above meditation before going to sleep is very effective. Sit comfortably on the bed and put attention on the "third eye"( the area on your forehead between your eyebrows). Follow the breath in and out then lie on the back. Watch the breath and concentrate on third eye so that we will sleep like a child.
Happiness and misery, nourishment and emaciation, strength and debility. virility and impotence, knowledge and ignorance, life and death are all dependent on sleep. Good sleep results in immense happiness and longevity, whereas improper sleep either less or in excess destroys life and happiness.