Cold-catarrh is not considered a major disease. Eve ryone has suffered from it at some time. Although it is not a very serious dis ease it is no doubt troublesome. Patients get used to it and never complain about it . A person suffering from a cold is never considered as a patient. But if it gets too b ad, the patient tries to seek treatment.
Suffering from cold-catarrh is not recognized as an unhealthy condition. People boast about their health stating - “I’ve not suffered from cold-catarrh since twenty years.” Of course, a person not suffering fr om cold-catarrh can be said to be of sound health. Besides, frequent occurrence of cold- catarrh cannot be stated as destruction of sound health as it is the cleansing by the body to dispose off the impurities in it, not a sickness. But such frequent cleansing may be considered a defect. It is an indication of a rise in impurities in the body. The person having improper diet, constant indigestion, lack of exerci se, weak immune system befalls is a victim of this disease.
A “runny” nose is the first symptom of this problem . Sometimes nostrils are choked and the person has to breathe through his mo uth. Sneezing, throat irritation, heaviness in the head, headache are other symptoms seen gradually. The tip of the nose becomes extremely sensitive from frequent blow ing. There is no sensation of smell and taste and at times there is a temporary c hange in voice, pain in throat, and temporary deafness. Prolonged cough may result in f ever. Besides, a feeling of leanness, reduced hunger, reduced enthusiasm, water ing eyes, trouble in breathing, chest pain are experienced in further stages. If th e disease is growing it has to be controlled with proper treatment. Otherwise it may increase complications.
Germs take advantage of the sickness and the person may suffer from influenza. Increase in cold may develop a swelling in the muscles of sinus due to infection and the patient may have to suffer from s inusitis (heaviness in the head, headache, choked throat, pain in the eyes, etc.). I f the infection reaches the Eustachian tube, the patient may suffer from temporary deafnes s along with fever. This infection gradually reaches the internal passage of lungs res ulting in asthmatic troubles like chest pain, panting, etc.
Modern medical sciences do not have effective medic ines for this disease. The medicines given at the time of trouble are those th at give only temporary relief reducing only the symptoms. As the saying goes, wit h medicines it takes a week to return to normal whereas, it takes seven days’ to f eel good without medicines. One can of course seek satisfaction by taking medicines . But only yoga and naturopathy are capable of giving complete liberation from this disease.
Once you are the victim of cold, you must avoid thi ngs that will increase the trouble. Over-eating increases trouble of cold whil e a little fasting reduces it. Sour, spicy and fried substance must be avoided. Controll ed diet should be taken on time. Raw diet and fruits (excepting banana, guava) must be taken. Drinking hot water will be helpful. Taking rest and observing silence with less exertion during this period will prove effective.
The therapeutic processes in yoga for colds and exc ess phlegm are Jalaneti, Vaman and Kapalbhati.
This is the process of cleaning the nasal passages with the help of water. Add one teaspoon salt in a mug full of lukewarm water a nd pour it in the container specially made for performing Jalaneti. The contain er has a spout. Place the opening of the container in one of the nostrils, breathe wi th the mouth, move the neck a little back and tilt it in the opposite direction. Now til t the container and let the water from it enter the nose through its spout. The water will enter the throat because of its specific angle. Do not gulp it but change the direc tion of the neck a bit so that it comes out from the other nostril. Continue the flow of water until water in the container is finished. Perform the same action with the other nostril. After completing the process with both nostrils stand with some dist ance in the feet placing the hands on the waist. Inhale, bend and move the waist and h ead from left to right and while moving so exhale with a jerk. Further, inhale again and bend and move head and waist from right to left exhaling with a jerk. Perf orm 5-10 repetitions so that water from the nostril will be thrown out. If the water r emains in the nostrils, it will result in cold. One may perform Kapalbhati if he can.
Jalaneti cannot be performed when the nostrils are choked. But if it performed frequently at other times, the person will never su ffer from cold. If the person has a tendency of suffering from frequent cold, performin g Jalaneti once in a week will be useful for him.
The process of vomiting after drinking plenty of wa ter is very effective. The excess of acids, phlegm and toxins are disposed in this process, which helps in reducing the cold of the person. A mixture of lukew arm water and salt is used in this process too. Add two teaspoons of salt in a jug of water and drink 8-10 glasses. This gives a feeling of heaviness in the stomach as well as a vomiting sensation. The person may still drink a glass full again. This wil l intensify the vomiting sensation. One may vomit by bending and inserting fingers in t he throat. Performing this act four to six times will remove all the water from the sto mach, thus cleaning it. A feeling of lightness and contentment is experienced as all the toxins are disposed off. Lastly, Shavasana for 10 minutes will pacify the vomiting s ensation. Do not eat anything for an hour after performing Vaman. Regular diet can be taken later. If all water is not thrown out during the process of Vaman, the water p asses further and is eliminated in the form of purges that stop automatically. It is n ot the case to worry. The impurities that are thrown out in the process of Vaman may app ear reddish. But it is not blood. The reddish color may be due to acids.
The process of Vaman immediately reduces the cold o r acidic trouble. Performance of Vaman constantly for 8-10 days with empty stomach removes the phlegm in the stomach. Later, it may be performed o nce in a week. Those suffering from hypertension, heart disease or brain diseases must not perform Vaman. To reduce the phlegm in the stomach, eating soda may b e added in the water.
Kapalbhati is a cleansing process similar to Jalane ti or Vaman, but performed 107 with air instead of water. This process consists of gentle inhalation and forced exhalation as if blowing a bug out of the nose. Som e term this process as Pranayama but it is not. Exhalation is significant in this pr ocess as the diaphragm is lifted up during exhalation and moved down during inhalation. Hence the air in the chest is thrown out vigorously. When the diaphragm is relaxe d, the air automatically and gently enters the lungs. Again throw out the air wi th a jerk and again breathe in gently, thoroughly. Performing these cycles rapidly is Kapalbhati. The rate should be generally120 cycles per minute. This is of course a n ideal condition. Initially a person gets exhausted on performing only 30-40 cycles and the practice has to be stopped. It can be performed up to three to four minutes consis tently with constant practice.
The process carries out purification of the alveoli as well. Furthermore, the impurities or phlegm, entangled in the respiratory tract are pushed further and are gradually thrown out. There is no possibility of th eir return as inhalation is gentle. This process also affects the sinus positively. The vigorous exhalation pulls out the impurities in the sinus. The toxins in the cells of the nasal tract are thrown out as the air goes out of this tract rapidly. This purifies the nasal tract thus reducing the cold troubles of the patient. It also reduces swelling o f the nasal tract and choked nostrils.
In addition to these three cleansing process, the t hree pranayamas- Naadishuddhi, Suryabhedan, and Bhasrika too prove u seful. But it is not possible to discuss their techniques in this chapter. They have to be learnt from an expert. But a person can easily practice deep breathing and rapid breathing. Besides, certain asanas help in improving the physical resistance power. Re gular practice of yoga may keep the individual away from cold.
Boil half a vessel of water. When water comes to bo il, mix half a bowl of grated cabbage into it and cover it tightly. Let th e water boil more for two-three minutes. Then take the vessel off the fire along wi th the lid over it. Cover the face as well as the vessel with a cloth. Slide the lid and inhale the steam with the nose as well as the mouth. Close the lid immediately. Open the l id and inhale steam again. Do this activity for 10 minutes. Dry the face and take rest for sometime. Take this steam for two to three times a day during the trouble of cold . It will reduce the trouble and free the choked nostrils.
Extract cabbage juice from the juicer. On absence o f juicer, cut the cabbage into smaller pieces and grind it in a grinder and s train it with a clean cloth. Take a glass full of juice empty stomach in the morning. J uice of sweet lime, orange or apple may be added to it to taste. Take this juice fresh immediately after preparation. Take the juice every morning until suffering from cold. (The cabbages used for steam and for juice must be different).
A combination of yoga, naturopathy and diet control can definitely give liberation from this complex disease of cold.
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