Yojana June 2019 - Yoga & Alternative Systems of Medicine (Part 2) (Download PDF)

Doorsteptutor material for competitive exams is prepared by world's top subject experts: get questions, notes, tests, video lectures and more- for all subjects of your exam.

Increasing Relevance of Yoga in Modern Times: - Ever since UNO declared June 21st as International Day of Yoga (IDY), celebration of this IDY has become a global phenomenon. Aim of Govt. is to promote & encourage youth who have excelled & achieved in disciplines of Yoga & sports.

Yoga Indian Ethos

  • Sage Patanjali says: ‘Yoga can control modifications of our mind stuff’ (Yogaha Chittavritti nirodhaha I).
  • Sage Vasista while imparting Yoga to Sri Rama, says in Yoga Vasista treatise that ‘means for calming mind is called Yoga’ (Manaha prashamanopayaha Yogaha iti abhidheeyate I).
  • Krishna declares in Bhagavad Gita that ‘Balance or equipoise of mind is Yoga’ (Samatvam Yogam Ucchyate) & ‘Skill in actions Yoga’ (Yogaha karmasu kaushalam I).
  • India is in fronting of information technology, biotechnology, Nano- science & other types of research.
  • Internal & external stresses of people in these fields can be relieved by practicing Yoga & for attaining peace & comfort. Various Yoga organizations & NGOs & several central universities have popularized Yoga world wide w/untiring efforts.

Yoga & Health

  • Charaka while elaborating on issue of health of individual says that complete health means totality of healthy body, sense organs & pleasant mind (Prasnna atmendriya manaha svasthamityabhidheeyate I), which has been incorporated in motto of World Health Organization.
  • Great contributions of ancient Indian medical doctors like Charaka, Sushruta, Vagbhata, Mdhava, Nagarjuna, vedic sages & others merit our attention.

Yoga A Panacea for Modern Diseases:

  • Yoga can cure diseases such as Diabetes, Obesity, Cancer, Hypertension & other non-communicable diseases.

Yoga & Youth

  • Practice & perfect understanding of four streams of Yoga such as knowledge (Jnana Yoga), action (Karma Yoga), devotion (Bhakti Yoga) & meditation (Raja Yoga) would calm down body, mind & release stress.
  • Indian youth who from more than 50 % of total Indian population should practice Yoga for overall development of their personalities.
  • Culled out from ancient wisdom of Upanishads & Yoga lore are principles & techniques that are practically applied in SMET (self mgmt. of Excessive Tension) program.
  • Yoga could promote concept of ‘Earth is but one Family’ (Vasudhaiva kutumbakam).
  • India can emerge in yogic & spiritual planes & earn encomium of Yoga vishwa Guru among nations in coming years.

Yoga for Lifestyle Changes

  • According to 2019 edition of Bloomberg Healthiest Country index, India is placed at 120th rank among 169 countries related to measures such as mortality by communicable & non-communicable diseases & life expectancy.
  • Physical inactivity is now identified as fourth leading risk factor for global mortality.
  • Unhealthy diet was second biggest factor in India driving most deaths & disability combined, after malnutrition.

Lifestyle Changes Include

  • Absence of disease
  • Optimal physical fitness
  • Proper nutrition
  • Spirituality
  • Smoking cessation
  • Stress mgmt.
  • Substance abuse control
  • Health Education
  • Environmental support
  • Yoga is science of a being’s evolution. It is science of activating inner energies; blossoming of human potential to its fullness is yoga; balance of intellectualism is yoga; health insurance at Zero budget; passport to health assurance; secular nature & science; technology or science of inner evolution for total well being.
  • Powerful antidote to stresses of modern daily life. Yoga has three principles: purification, concentration & liberation.
  • According to Yoga Sutras, ” Yoga sutures wounds of life. “
  • Assessing Fitness: Present trend of assessing fitness is known as metabolic fitness like: Blood Glucose level should be around 85 mg/dl’ Blood Pressure should be around 115/76 mm; body Mass Index should be b/w 18.5 & 24.9 units; total cholesterol at 200mg/dl or less; HDL at 60 mg/dl or above; LDL under 100 mg/dl; Triglycerides at 100 mg/dl or less; Pulse rate should be below 72 counts; Genetic fitness test (40 genes) helps to improve fitness, health & nutrition.

Special Features of Yogic Practices

  • Prayer cleanses blockages in small intestine thru brain signals & activates vibrations in brain particularly hypothalamus; increases blood flow to brain & promotes gamma waves;
  • Kriyas perfect autonomous nervous system; balance three doshas (vata- nervous System; pita- digestive system; Kapha – respiratory system); eliminate toxins;

Pawanmuktasana Series (simple physical exercises)

  • Increase synovial fluid;
  • Stretch ligaments & tendons;
  • Promote immunity power & brain function;
  • Flush out excess free radicals;
  • Thickness & quality of cartilage improved;
  • Flush out excess calcium oxalate solidness;
  • Surya namaskar & asanas balance secretion of hormones (regulates specific human systems);
  • Mudras perfect carebro spinal fluid to flush out waste products
  • Pranayama maximize endurance & removes toxins; cures all diseases; balances earth, water, fire, & air elements & activates electrical activity

Bandhas activate central nervous system

  • Meditation is for purification of mind; it activates space elements; leads to thru less stage; blood flow increases; set right biological clock’ generas perfected by activating hypothalamus
  • Yoga helps to get qualities of total well being
  • Blessing activate dopamine system in brain.

Benefits of eight limbs of Astang Yog

  • Yama & Niyama promote psychological qualities (siddhis) such as Clair Voyance (future), Clair audience (sound), Premonition (unpleasntincident) bad happening, Clair empathy (sensing emotion), Intuition (inner thru), Telepathy (reads others thru), Psychic healing (curing), Auric sight (other colors), Psycho kenetics (move objects), psychometry (getting information of others). Asanas give steel like body; promote immunity power.

Paranayama Awakens Kundalini Sakti

  • Pratyahara, Dharana, Dhyan & Samathi focus to get
  • Strength of an elephant
  • Glow of sun
  • Beauty of moon
  • Working of internal organs
  • Ability to become invisible &
  • Even weightless & more

Signs of Samadhi state (higher consciousness) include

  • Fewer breaths
  • Fewer thru
  • A sense of inner peace & joy
  • Reduced extremes of emotions
  • A feeling that they were not encased within limits of a physical body
  • Enhancement of strength of will & perseverance
  • Appreciable behaviour
  • Yogic practices enhance gray matter for cognition & white for communication; enhance white matter to avoid depression which is number one reason for ill-health; Yogic practices promote Neurogenesis in which stem cells become matured cells; Yogic practices improve responsiveness of immune cells called neutrophils to a bacterial challenge; Optogenetics- A technique that uses light to erase bad memory & to enhance good ones by controlling Neuron activity.
  • Yoga promotes natural thermogenesis; Period gene, timeless gene & double time gene are to control circadian rhythm (biological clock).
  • Yogic practices activate natural process of preventing DNA damage as cells ageing, Yogic practices help to from new angiogenic blood vessels in body; maintains diff. Parts of body in a stable & balanced way to reverse aging (homestatis); Promotes bio-energetics (transforms energy to brain & neurons).
  • Amritha is a deep red liquid secreted by pineal gland which produces & stimulates blissful state called Anandam.
  • Anadamide, bliss molecule & a neurotransmitter in brain creates a state of accentuated happiness. This neurotransmitter is activated by yogic practices.
  • Biological clock is perfected by genes; Genes are purified by Yogic practices.

Notable Benefits of Sattvic Diet

  • Sattvic diet promotes life, virtue, strength, health, performance, happiness, purification of inner being & satisfaction Bhagavad Gita.

General Yogic Practices for Proper Lifestyle

  • Suryanamaskar, Trikonasana, Sirsasana, Halasana, Sarvangasana, Suptavjrasana, Dhanurasana, Ushtrasana, Navasana, Ardha matsyendrasana, Paschimottanasana, Kapalbhati in Padmasana, Bhastrika Pranayama in Vajrasana, Nadi Shodhana Pranayama in Siddhasana & Meditation.

Alternative Systems of Medicine in India: an Overview

  • Alternative systems of medicine (ASM), which include both Indian/indigenous systems i. e. Ayurveda & Siddha as well as those not originated in India, i. e. Homeopathy.
  • Article aims to summarize evolution of diff. Type of medicine antiquity; provide an overview of ASM in India; & suggest a way forward as country intends to progress towards Universal Health Coverage (UHC).

Evolution of Medicine Since Ancient Times

  • History to medicine indicates that almost every major civilization & culture had developed their own system for curing diseases, thru approaches varied.
  • From very beginning of human civilization, there has been an interest in controlling diseases, ensuring good health & prolonging life.
  • In mid of twentieth century, stream of medicine based upon concept of ‘treatment of diseases by use of a drug which produces a reaction that itself neutralizes disease condition or disease causing agents’ started getting popular & is now known as Allopathy or Allopathic Medicine.

India & Alternative Systems of Medicine

  • First full fledged department for Indian Systems of Medicine & Homeopathy (ISM&H) was created under Ministry of Health & Family Welfare, GOI in March 1995 to promote & regulate practice of alternative systems of medicine in country (Box 3).
  • This department was renamed as Department of Ayurveda, Yoga & Naturopathy, Unani, Siddha & Homeopathy (AYUSH)
  • In 2002 GOI formulated National Policy on Indian Systems of Medicine & Homeopathy.
  • Current National Health Policy of India has proposed functional linkage of AYUSH at all levels of health systems, including service delivery as well as work force.
  • Policy proposal focuses on inclusion of Yoga at work place, in schools & in community as an important form of promoting health & wellness.

Discussion & Way Forward

  • Discourse is aligned w/dialogues for moving from ‘doctor-centric’ to a ‘team-based’ approach to health service delivery, where each type of provider (doctors, nurse, alternative system of medicine, pharmacist, counsellor) play diff. & complementary roles.
  • India is making some progress in this area thru MLHP under HWCs.
  • There is a need for extending similar research on additional systems of medicine. More strategic approaches are needed in this area including building knowledge base for T & CM thru facilitating national policies; capacity building; further Strengthening of quality assurance, safety, proper use & effectiveness of T & CM by products, practices & practitioners; & by integrating T & CM services into healthcare service delivery & self healthcare.


  • There is a focus, both globally & in India, on strengthening primary healthcare (PHC) & advancing UHC, which would require intentions at all levels of health systems.

- Published/Last Modified on: July 11, 2019


Developed by: