Kerala Ayurveda Hamsapadi Kwath
The Hamsapadi Kwath is a formulation of Ayurvedic herbs that are used in thyroid disorder treatment and as an Ayurvedic medicine for low BP. By balancing and equalising the function of the thyroid gland this medicine is a hypothyroidism treatment as well as a medicine for hyperthyroidism. It also has a normalising effect on the blood pressure of a person and is an Ayurvedic medicine for BP.
The thyroid gland is the butterfly-shaped gland that is located at the base of your neck. This gland controls the metabolism of the body as well as the speed of the heartbeats. The metabolism of the body determines the rate at which the body turns food into energy. The most common thyroid problems are the overproduction or underproduction of the thyroid hormone. When there is too much hormone production, it causes a condition called hyperthyroidism and when it’s too low it’s called hypothyroidism. Hamsapadi Kwath is an Ayurvedic medicine for thyroid disorder treatment. It can be used for both hypothyroidism treatment as well as for hyperthyroidism treatment. Its formulation makes it suitable for the treatment of blood pressure problems as well.
Thyroid Disorders In Western Medicine
The thyroid gland produces hormones that control most of the metabolic processes in the body. Too much production of the thyroid hormone results in hyperthyroidism. It causes symptoms such as heat sensitivity, sleep problems, tremor in the hands, tiredness, weakness, mood swings, anxiety, sudden weight loss, heart palpitations, brittle hair, thinning skin and problems with the menstrual cycle. When a person takes certain medications such as beta-blockers for blood pressure, it might mask the signs of hyperthyroidism. The increase in the metabolic rate that comes with hyperthyroidism might at first make a person feel full of energy. But this unnatural increase in the metabolic rate could eventually stress and strain the body leading to tiredness. Though younger people might experience the symptoms of hyperthyroidism suddenly it is a condition that usually develops slowly.
Hyperthyroidism can be caused by other disorders such as:
- Graves’ disease: This is an immune system disorder that is a very common reason for hyperthyroidism and is more prevalent in women under the age of 40
- Thyroid nodules: This is when lumps of tissue or nodules in the gland become too active thus creating too much of the thyroid hormone
- Thyroiditis: This is caused by an infection or an immune system disorder that causes the swelling of the thyroid gland and leakage of the hormones followed by a period of low levels of the hormone. Both of these states are temporary
- When a person has an abnormally high intake of any thyroid hormone medication or too much iodine in the diet it can also result in hyperthyroidism
- Treatment for the condition includes the use of antithyroid drugs, beta-blockers, radioactive iodine or surgery
When the thyroid gland produces too little of the thyroid hormone it causes hypothyroidism. Since the condition slows down the body’s metabolism it makes a person feel very sluggish. Other symptoms are dry skin, dry hair, hair loss, changes in the menstrual cycle, fatigue, depression, sensitivity to cold, swelling of the thyroid gland, unexpected weight gain, difficulty losing weight, carpal tunnel syndrome, and constipation.
The most common reason for hypothyroidism is thyroiditis or the inflammation of the thyroid gland. Hashimoto's thyroiditis is an autoimmune disorder that causes the body to attack the thyroid. Sometimes thyroiditis is caused by a viral infection. Other causes include radiation damage, radioactive iodine treatment, thyroid surgery, inadequate iodine intake, thyroid problems at birth, pregnancy and problems with the pituitary or hypothalamus. When there has been any radiation given to the neck area to cure cancer it can render the thyroid incapable of producing enough hormone. Similarly, the radioactive iodine treatment given for hyperthyroidism can damage the gland so much that it then causes hypothyroidism.
Sometimes when surgery is performed on the thyroid and only a part of the gland is removed the rest can produce enough hormone for the body’s needs. But in other cases, it leads to hypothyroidism. Since the body requires enough iodine to produce the hormone, an inadequate iodine intake can cause too little of the hormone to be produced. Some babies are born with thyroid problems at birth which is called congenital hypothyroidism. Most of the hospitals in the US screen infants for the condition as a matter of course. Pregnancy can cause the thyroid to malfunction. It results in very high hormone levels that are followed by very low levels. It’s called postpartum thyroiditis and usually regains normalcy without any treatment.
A very rare form of hypothyroidism is caused by the hypothalamus not producing enough of the hormone called TRH which controls the pituitary gland’s production of TSH. TSH is called the thyroid-stimulating hormone which controls the production of the hormone by the thyroid. Certain drugs that are used to treat other conditions can cause thyroid hormone production to be affected.
Ayurveda And Thyroid Problems
Ayurveda considers thyroid problems to be a result of stress and lifestyle issues. Thyroid problems are not specifically mentioned but can be equated to different Ayurvedic issues. Pitta Dosha is the Dosha that controls the function of the thyroid gland. Depending on the location of the problem that the thyroid malfunction is causing problems it is classified under different Sthanas. All three Doshas have a connection with the thyroid function. The Dhatus involved are the Medha and Rasa Dhatus. Hypothyroidism symptoms are related to the Kaphaj Pandu symptoms and Vataj Pandu symptoms. The effect of the thyroid hormone affects the Kaphaja Shota and Vataj Shota. So hypothyroidism is a Kapha-Vata Dosha problem with a diminished Agni and hyperthyroidism is a Pitta-Vata Dosha problem with an unstable Agni. Hyperthyroidism is caused by the Pittaj Pandu and the Amayukta Mala and leads to Dhatukshaya.
Treatment for hypothyroid disorders in Ayurveda includes Kapha Vatahara and Atisthoulya Chikitsa to strengthen the Agni. Hyperthyroidism treatment tried to stabilise the unstable Agni with treatments such as Swedanam, Snehapanam, Virechanam, and Vasti