Wide awake diet

An ancient Indian health system helped one woman to fight fatigue.

Lauren Wilkinson used to find that every day was a battle with fatigue. While she was in her early thirties, pursuing a highflying City career, a constant, nagging tiredness crept up on her. She reached a crunchpoint in 2003. “I’d lost all my energy,” she recalls. “I was sleeping 15 hours a night at weekends and was too tired to see friends. ”

The Royal College of Psychiatrists says that about one Briton in ten suffers from prolonged fatigue, with the condition more common in women. In fact, being tired all the time - TATT, as doctors call it - is one of the most common reasons for visiting our GPs. In a small number of such cases, physical illnesses such as anaemia, thyroid problems, or diabetes are to blame. A tiny minority - about 150,000 in the UK, according to the NHS - suffer from chronic fatigue syndrome, a little-understood disease that causes profound exhaustion, unrelieved by rest. But in about 90 per cent of “tired all the time” patients no cause is found and GPs are likely to advise on ways to decrease stress.

Wilkinson, though, now 40, found an answer in the Indian health system called Ayurveda. With roots in Indian philosophy dating back 2,500 years, Ayurveda teaches that supplements made from herbs, minerals and animal products, as well as dietary changes, can help to balance the five elements - space, air, water, fire, earth – that comprise the human body. The results, practitioners claim, can equal a transformation in health and wellbeing.

By 2003, says Wilkinson, every part of her life was affected by tiredness. She had given up her career and had space to take stock. “In 2004 I began to train as a counsellor; I was used to academic work from university, but now even writing essays felt so hard because of the constant fatigue.” Although medical professionals advise going to see your doctor first, to eliminate anything serious, Lauren didn’t consult her GP: “It didn’t occur to me there might be an answer.”

That was, until she heard friends enthusiastically discussing Ayurveda.
Wilkinson had her first appointment with the Ayurvedic practitioner Sascha Kriese in November 2005. Kriese, who took a degree in Ayurvedic medicine at Thames Valley University, began the session, as always, by taking her pulse, using three fingers placed on her wrist. Pulse reading is a key diagnostic method in Ayurveda. According to a crucial Ayurvedic concept called the tri-dosha system, the human body is governed by three constitutional hu-mours – the manifestations of the five fundamental elements in our body – called doshas: vata, pitta and kapha. In a healthy body, the three doshas are balanced; if they fall out of balance, ill-health will result.

Source - Times