The 7th chapter of Sutrasthana of Asthanga Hrudayam text book is called Anna Raksha Vidhi Adhyaya. Anna Raksha refers to protection of food. This chapter deals with royal physician, features of poisoned foods and drinks, incompatible food combinations, effects and treatment, healthy sleep rules and celibacy.
Pranacharya (Royal physician)
The king should arrange for the residence of the royal physician near to the palace so that the physician can be vigilant about all things at all times. – 1
The foods and drinks of the king should be protected from poison, because, the King’s health and welfare depends on his food and drink and the health and welfare of the country is dependent on the King. – 2
Features of poisoned foods and drinks
Boiled rice mixed with poison
Sandra – becomes thick,
Even when it is boiling, the contents do not overflow out of the vessel.
Chirena Pachyate – takes a long time to cook,
Pakvo bhavati paryushitopama – after cooking it becomes moist and stale, very soon
Mayura Kantha Tulyoshma – emits steam with the colour of the peacock’s neck (blue),
Moha moorcha prasekakrut – the steams and fumes from the container causes delusion, fainting and excessive salivation.
Heeyate varna gandhadyaihi – quickly loses its original colour, odour, taste, texture,
Klidyate chandrikachitaha – becomes watery and full of glistening particles. 3-4
The side-dishes dry up quick and become dirty
Reflective images seen in them appear deficient, malformed, abnormal or not seen at all;
Froth and lines appear on their surface and edges, threads and bubbles are likely to appear.
Raga (sweet syrups), Khandava (sweet puddings), vegetables and meat become broken (liquid and solid portions get separated) and acquire bad taste. 5-6.
Neela Raji Rase – Blue lines appear in meat soup,
Tamra ksheere – coppery red lines in milk and
Shyava dadhani – black ones in curds
Peeta Sita takre – yellowish white lines in buttermilk,
Ghrute paaneeya sannibha – watery lines on ghee,
Mastuni syat kapotabha – pigeon like streaks appear on Mastu – Supernatent liquid of curds (whey),
Raji krishna tushodake – blue black lines on Tushodaka (sour drink prepared from barley husk),
Kaali madya ambhasoho – black lines on wines and water,
Harit taile arunopama – green lines in honey and crimson lines on oils.
Unripe fruits ripen (fast) and ripe ones become overripe and decomposed.
Substances which are green and dry become dull in appearance and discolored.,
Soft food substances become hard and vice versa.
The flowers of the garland become split at their edges, fade and assume unnatural smell.
Dirty patches appear on cloth (dress and other apparels), its threads and hems fall out.
Vessels prepared from metals, pearls, wood, stone, precious stones etc. become dirty, and lose their smooth touch and lustre .
Mud vessels gain smooth touch and lustre. 5-11.
Vishada Laksana (features of the person who puts poison)
The person who is about to poison someone will have
Shyava shushka Asya – dry and discoloured face
Vilaksho Veekshate dishaha – eccentrically looks in all directions
Sveda vepathuman – sweating and tremors
Trasta – tired,
Bheeta – frightened
Skhalati – slips while talking and walking
Jrumbhate – yawns frequently. 12
Testing of poisoned foods – Vishanna Pareeksha
Upon throwing the poisoned food on fire, it emits crackling sound, the flame emits as a single pile, without whirls, the colour of smoke resembles that of peacock’s neck (glistening blue), sometimes the flame may not come up at all. It will emit very foul and strong smell.
Mriyate Makshikaaha – upon eating such food, bees die
Kaakaha kshaamasvaro bhavet – Crow voice becomes depleted
Parot, Dathyuha (gallinule bird) and Sarika (Mynah) start hooting at the poisoned food just by seeing it.
Hamsaha praskhalati – Swan changes its gait
Glaanih: jeevenjeevasya jaayate – Chukar gets exhausted
Chakorasya akshivairaagyam – Greeh pheasant’s eyes turn red
Kraunchasya madodaya: – Pond heron becomes intoxicated
Pigeon, Parabhrit (Cuckoo) and Chaktravaaka lose their life
UdvegaM yaati maarjaara: – cat becomes irritated, excited
Shakrun munchati vanara: – monkey defecates
After confirming the poisoned food by above methods, it should be disposed away carefully- 14-18
Diseases caused by poisoned food – (Visha annaja Vikara)
External effects: The touch of poisoned foods produces itching and irritation, burning sensation all over the body, burning sensation at the site of touch, fever, pain, eruptions, loss of tactile sensation, falling of the nails and hairs and swelling.
The treatment shall be bathing (washing), pouring with water processed with anti-poisonous drugs, application of paste of Sevya (Ushira), Candana (sandalwood), Padmaka – Wild Himalayan Cherry (heart wood) – Prunus puddum / cerasoides;, Somavalka, Talisa Patra – Cinnamomum tamala, Kushta (Saussurea lappa), Amrita (Tinospora) and Nata – Valeriana wallichi. 19-20.
Local effect in oral cavity: Poisoned food inside mouth causes excess of salivation, inactivity of the tongue and lips, burning sensation, tingling of the teeth, inability to perceive taste and stiffness of the lower jaw.
The treatment shall be mouth gargling with water processed with Sevya – Khus Khus – Vetiveria zizanioides and other drugs mentioned earlier and all other therapies for the mouth which are anti-poisonous. 21-21½.
Reaching stomach it produces sweating, fainting, flatulence, toxicity, giddiness, horripilations, vomiting, burning sensation, loss of movement of the eyes and heart, and appearance of black dots all over the body.
Reaching the intestines it produces vomiting in many colours, excess of urination, purgation, drowsiness, emaciation, pallor, enlargement of the abdomen and loss of strength.
For both these conditions the patient should be administered Vamana (emesis) and Virechana (purgation therapies), followed by Nasya (nasal medication), Anjana (collyriums) and drinking of decoction prepared from Haridra – Turmeric Rhizome – Curcuma longa, and Daruharidra (Berberis aristata), Katabhi – Celastrus paniculata, Guda- jaggery, Sinduvarita, Nispava, Baspika, Sataparvika, roots of Tanduliyaka, Kukkutanda – hen’s egg and Avalguja – Psoralea corylifolia to relieve the effect of poison. 22-26.
Gara visha chikitsa
Hrid Vishodhana – Gara Visha Chikitsa – Treatment to detoxify heart and to treat chronic poisoning:
When there is poisoning, first vomiting and purgation therapy is conducted to remove remnant poison in the gut. Then, to cleanse and detoxify the heart, Tamra bhasma is administered to the patient. After that, Swarna bhasma is administered for a long period of time. By such Swarna administration for long time, the body becomes as pure as Gold. The term used for this is ‘Hemapanga’.
Na Sajjate Hemapange padmapatre ambuvat visham ||
In a person who has been given Gold bhasma for a long time, the poison can not do any harm, similar to a water drop that can not touch the leaf of the lotus. The person gains long life.
The same treatment is followed in Gara Visha (chronic poisoning) also.
Incompatible foods (Viruddha Ahara)
On many occasions, consuming two food items together or a particular type of food processing may render the food toxic. It is called as incompatible food. Even incompatible foods should be considered similar to poison / artificial poisoning. 29.
Anupa mamsa with Masha, Kshaudra, Ksheera and Virudaka – Meat of animals of marshy regions is incompatible with black gram, honey, milk and germinated grains.
Bisa, Mulaka (Radish – Raphanus sativus) or Guda jaggery is incompatible with fish.
Fish with milk, especially Chilichima variety of fist with milk is incompatible. 30.
All sour substances are incompatible with milk
Sour fruits with milk is not recommended.
Horse gram (Kulattha), Varaka, Kangu, Valla and Makustaka. – these are not recommended along with cow milk. 31½.
After consuming green leafy vegetables and radish, drinking milk should be avoided. 32.
Pork should not be taken along with porcupine meat.
Chicken (Kukkuta) and Spotted deer should not be taken along with curds
Uncooked meat along with bile
Radish along with black gram
Sheep meat along with leaves of Kusumba herb
Germinated grains along with Bisa
Lakucha Phala along with black gram soup (masha supa)
Banana along with butter milk is not recommended.
Curds along with Tala phala (Palm date)
Pippali, Maricha and honey
Kakamachi along with jaggery
Black pepper along with fish or during digestion of fish – 33-36.
Pippali (long pepper) processed with the oil in which fish is fried should be rejected.
Ghee kept in bronze vessel for more than 10 days should not be taken.
Hot substances or hot procedures (like sun bath) is not recommended along with Bhallataka. 37.
Meat of Bhasa bird – white headed vulture should not be roasted.
Kampilla (a dish) prepared with buttermilk – 37½.
Mixing of milk, beer and Krishara (rice – green gram dish) – 38
Mixing of equal quantities of any 2, 3 or all of the following is not recommended – honey, ghee, meat fat, sesame oil and beverages.
Honey along with ghee, even in unequal proportions, should not be consumed along with water.
Honey along with seeds of Pushkara,
Honey, along with wine of dates (Maireya) and sugar
Milk drinks along with Mantha (solution of corn flour)
Mushroom with yellow coloured cap, along with mustard oil is incompatible.
Upodika (Indian spinach) processed along with sesame seed paste causes diarrhoea. – 41
Meat of Balaka bird along with Varuni (date wine) and Kulmasha (green gram and other pulses cooked together)
Meat of Balaka along with pork fat is lethal.
Meat of Tittiri, peacock, Godha (Iguana lizard), Lava (common quail), Kapinjala, cooked by the fire of wood of castor and processed with, fried in castor oil is lethal.
Meat of Haridra (yellow bird) paired with wood of Haridra and cooked over the flame of Haridra is lethal.
Meat of Haridra, cooked by smearing ash and sand, consumed along with honey kills the person quickly.
Definition of Viruddha – incompatible
In brief, whichever food or activity that causes increase of Doshas but does not expel the Dosha out of the body is termed as Viruddha.
Note: In Panchakarma treatment also, Dosha is increased and then expelled out of body. But in Panchakarma, though there is increase of Dosha, because they are expelled out, there is no harm. But in Viruddha Ahara, the food causes only increase of Dosha, leading to toxic symptoms.
Treatment for incompatible food consumption
Shodhana – purification procedure – Panchakarma
Shamana – palliative treatment
Virodha chikitsa – symptom based treatment.
Health should be restored quickly by using food that have opposite qualities to that of incompatible foods.
In those who exercise regularly, who are habituated to oily fatty food, who have good digestion power, in young, and strong, the incompatible food will not cause any ill effects.
In those, who are habituated (sathmya) to incompatible food and in those who take low quantities of incompatible food for a long period of time, the ill effects will not be seen. 47
Satmikarana Krama – (method of accustomization)
Unhealthy things – foods, drinks, activities which have become accustomed by long use should be discontinued by quarter and quarter gradually.
Similarly healthy things (foods etc.) should be gradually made use with intervals of 1, 2 and 3 days. 48.
Sudden discontinuance of unhealthy things, foods, drinks etc. and indulgence in healthy things, done suddenly and improperly give rise to diseases. 49
The ill effects of incompatible foods that eliminated gradually and good habits developed gradually leads to robust health.
Wise men should not help the intimate vitiating factors by indulging in unhealthy things.
Trayopastambha – Three pillars of life
Ahara – food, Shayana – Sleep and Abrahmacharya (non-celibacy) -if properly indulged, support the body constantly just like the house is supported by the pillars.
Sleep – Nidra
Happiness and unhappiness, proper nourishment or emaciation, strength and debility, sexual powers and impotence, knowledge and ignorance, life and its absence (death) – all are dependent on sleep. 53.
Akaala nidra – sleep at improper time,
Atiprasanga – excess sleep
Na nidra – lack of sleep – these three destroys health. 54.
Ratri jagarana – Keeping awake at nights (avoiding sleep) is dry (causes dryness in the body),
Divasvapna – sleeping during daytime is unctuous (causes moistness inside) and
Taking a nap sitting comfortably (during day) is neither dry nor unctuous 55.
Sleeping during day time is beneficial during summer, because in that season, Vata undergoes mild increase, dryness is more, nights are short;
Day sleeping during other seasons causes Kapha and Pitta increase.
Day sleep indications
Who can have day sleep? Day sleeping is good for those who are exhausted by excessive speaking, riding, walking, wine, woman (sexual intercourse), carrying heavy load, physical activities, tired by anger, grief and fear, for those suffering from asthma, hiccup, diarrhoea, for the aged, children, the debilitated, the emaciated, those having injury, thirst, abdominal pain, indigestion; those assaulted, those intoxicated, and those who are habituated to day sleep. In them it maintains the normalcy of the tissues and the Kapha nourishes the body. 56-59.
Day sleep contraindications
Who should not have day sleep?
Obese, in whom Kapha is aggravated, who take regular oily food should avoid day sleep.
Those patients who are suffering from poisoning and throat disease should not sleep even at night.
Sleeping at improper time causes delusion, fever, lassitude, nasal catarrh, headache, dropsy, oppression in the chest (nausea), obstruction of the tissue pores and weakness of digestive function; for this fasting, emesis, sudation and nasal, medications are the treatment. 61-61½.
In case of excess of sleep, strong emetics, collyrium, nasal drops, fasting, worry, sexual intercourse, grief, fear and anger are advocated. By these the Kapha gets decreased leading to loss of sleep. 62-63.
Loss of sleep leads to squeezing pain in the body parts, heaviness of the head, too much of yawning, lassitude, exhaustion (even without strain), giddiness, indigestion, stupor and diseases of Vata origin. 64.
Hence, the person should sleep at the proper time at nights daily as much as desirable and become habituated to it. If he has kept awake at night due to non-habituation (not accustomed to), he should sleep for half that period, the next morning without taking any food. 65.
Those suffering from very little sleep (or no sleep at all), should indulge in the use of milk, wine, meat soup and curds (as food), oil massage and mild squeezing (of the body), bath, anointing the head, ears and eyes with nourishing oils, comforting embrace by the arms of the wife, harboring the feeling of satisfaction of having done good deeds and resorting to things which are comforting to the mind as much as desired; these bring about the pleasure of good sleep. For those who follow the regimen of celibacy, who are not very crazy of sexual intercourse and who are contented with happiness, sleep will not be very late than its regular time. 66 – 68.
Abrahmacharya – non celibacy
Sex – the person should avoid the woman who is not lying with her face upward, who is in her menstrual period, who is not liked, whose activities are displeasing, whose private parts are dirty and who is troublesome; who is very obese or very emaciated, who has recently delivered and who is pregnant;
The other woman (other than his wife), and the nun, the other animals like the goat, buffalo etc., should be avoided.
Avoid sex in the abode of the teacher, gods and kings in monasteries, burial ground, places of torture and of sacrifice and meeting of four roads.
One should avoid days of special significance (new-moon, full-moon, eclipse, festivals, mourning days and others),
Avoid organs which are non-sexual, (oral etc) and also the days forbidden for sex,
Avoid violence during sex.
One should not indulge in sex after a heavy meal, without keen intention, when hungry, when his body is in uncomfortable postures, when thirsty; with children, with the aged (old women), when troubled by other urges (such as of urine, faeces etc.) and when he himself is a patient. 69-72.
During Hemanta and Shishira (winter) the person can indulge in copulation (daily) as much as he likes after making use of aphrodisiacs (and obtaining strength);
Once in three days in Vasanta (spring) and Sarat (autumn) and
Once a fortnight in Varsha (rainy) and Nidagha (summer). 73.
Giddiness, exhaustion, weakness of the thighs, loss of strength, depletion of tissues, loss of acuity of senses and premature death occur from improper indulgence in the woman (sexual intercourse). 74.
Good memory, intelligence, long life, health, nourishment, acuity of sense organs, reputation, strength and slow ageing accrue from disciplined (controlled) indulgence in the women. 75.
After the act, the man should indulge himself in bath, applying scented paste, exposure to cool breeze, drinking of syrup prepared from sugar candy, cold water, milk, meat juice, soup, Sura – fermented liquor prepared from grains, Prasanna – clear supernatant fluid of Sura and then go to sleep; by these, the vigour of the body returns quickly to its abode again. 76.
The king who has implicitly reposed the protection of his body with his physician, who is well conversant with the scriptures and its practices efficient in work and kind, attains great valor, health, fame, influence, capacity to enjoy the fruits of all his actions and a long life. 77.
Thus ends the 7th chapter of Ashtanga Hrudaya Sutrasthana.