Bloodletting in Ayurveda

Let him bleed…

Yes, friends, let him bleed. He is bleeding for his own good. He is bleeding for his own health. He is bleeding for his own wellbeing. Let him bleed. Because it is autumn. When the rainy clouds are shying away and when sourness in the nature is at its peak, let him bleed. The fire is so high in the body that let him bleed. Let the fire leave him to calmness, to peace. Because the fire is two sided weapon. When he controls the fire, it is the light, it is the warmth and when the fire controls him, then it is a disaster, it is destruction. Let the destruction go away so that the tejas will illuminate his body, mind and soul.

Friends we are talking about one of the rules for the health of the body. Let the blood out in measured way of the body in autumn. It is called as Raktamokshana in Ayurveda. Raktamokshana is one of the important preventive rules described by Ayurveda. It means that in this season of October, every person has to let around 40 to 100 ml of the blood. Under medical supervision, a phlebotomy is done, which is an OPD procedure. It is similar to what you have experienced in pathological lab when they take your blood out for investigations. Or as an option, you can donate the blood. The blood donation day is on 1st of October. So if you are donating blood ion October, you achieve more. You can save someone’s life and you can cleanse your own body at one stroke.

How does it happen?

A small amount of blood lost gives stimulation to the haemopoetic system in the body. So that the fresh blood in the form of new red blood cells, white blood cells and other factors cot onto the vascular system. This is proved by different studies in recent times. One of them is the Stockholm study in which it was proven that the small amount of blood letting can lead to improve the anaemic status in the post radiotherapy and chemotherapy patients .

But the bloodletting is not only about getting the fresh blood into system. It’s much more than that. It helps a lot in skin disorders. By nature, many skin disorders are tenacious. They take a lot of time to get cured, by any system of medicine. And they have a habit of recurring. Skin is very much dependent on the blood for its normal metabolism. In Ayurveda this blood is called as raktadhatu and “impurities” in blood are responsible for these toxins in the skin. So right from allergic dermatitis ( peetaam) to psoriasis, this treatment is very much useful. Above all, It prevents many skin disorders like acne, vitiligo etc.

Bloodletting is also useful to prevent eye disorders. So, recurrent conjunctivitis, recurrent uveitis, recurrent vitreous haemorrhage, this treatment is useful in variety of dreadful and not so dreadful diseases.

We frequently use this therapy in hepatitis also and other liver related disorders as the liver or yakrut is related with the raktadhatu.

Along with this diseases, when a bloodletting is done on a regular basis, its useful to improve digestion, improve concentration and memory and reduce stress, and in certain cases of neurosis also in herpes, glandular swellings, abscesses, inflammations, joint disorders, high uric acids, heel pains, sciatica, tennis elbow etc.

 It is very useful in controlling metabolic syndrome. Metabolic syndrome is the name given to a host of difficulties affecting people who are obese. This includes insulin resistance, glucose intolerance, dyslipidaemia and hypertension and leads to an increased risk of diabetes and cardiovascular disease. Since it is known that accumulation of iron in the body is also associated with hypertension and diabetes researchers from Berlin and University Duisburg-Essen randomly assigned patients with metabolic syndrome into two groups, those undergoing iron reductions by phlebotomy and controls.

The iron-reduction patients had 300ml of blood removed at the start of the trial and between 250 and 500ml removed four weeks later. Six weeks later, allowing plenty of time for blood volume to be replaced, the patients who gave blood had a significant reduction in systolic blood pressure (from 148 mmHg to 130 mmHg) as well as reduction in blood glucose levels and heart rate, and an improvement in cholesterol levels (LDL/HDL ratio)( BMC Medicine, 2012.)

Ayurveda offers many simple solutions for major disorders. It has an array of treatments for the prevention of many diseases. Raktamokshana is one of them. Find more at Oorja wellness centre, Margao, Goa. India.