Month: September 2020

Health-consciousness and positive habits for a healthier lifestyle

We are just 3 months away from 2021. And soon it’ll be that time of the year when being fit and healthy will be on everyone’s resolutions list.

If you’re looking for some motivation then check out our new blog post about Health-Consciousness and a list of few simple habits that contribute to healthy living which you should totally consider adopting, especially during this quarantine period.

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Watch: Adapting to Ayurveda

Author: Deepa Natarajan
Full Length Interview with Prof. Dr. H.T. Sreenivas.

“All the wonders you seek are within yourself.”

– Thomas Browne

With the novel coronavirus crippling the world as fast as the blink of an eye, there isn’t much that one can do except take precautions and build immunity. And when one talks of boosting immunity, Ayurveda, the alternative medicine system that has existed for centuries, comes instantly to the mind. Even as the world is opening its eyes to the wonders of this ancient practice, isn’t it ironic that India, the birthplace of Ayurveda, is leering more and more towards modern medicine and helping insurance companies and boutique hospitals make a quick buck? 

While top scientists are working night and day to find the much-needed vaccine for this deadly pandemic, it’s about time we turn to our own culture and our inner selves to appreciate something that our country has given to the world. Physeek Cafe talks to Dr. HT Sreenivas, one of the frontrunners in the field, who speaks about the magic of Ayurveda and how it could be used to cure the signs and symptoms of Covid-19 and as well as prevent the spread. 

Dr Sreenivas started practicing Ayurveda way back in 1976 and even taught it at the prestigious Taranath Ayurvedic Medical College in Bellary. He also worked at the Government Ayurvedic Medical College, Bangalore, where he did his graduation and post-graduation. The Former Joint Director of the Department of Ayush, Govt of Karnataka, was one of the camp doctors who worked tirelessly when there was an outbreak of Japanese B Encephalitis in Tumkur in the late 70s. Having been part of the field for over 40 years, the list of his laurels is never-ending. The now-retired doctor has his own private practice and also serves as a visiting doctor at a private clinic in Bengaluru. 

Excerpts from the interview (Please watch the video for the detailed version)

1. Can you tell us about the origin of Ayurveda?

Ayurveda has ruled the past, present and future. Ayurvedic medicines have remained unchanged for the last 2500 years but the same cannot be said for modern medicine, which keeps undergoing changes. For instance, at the beginning of the 21st century, sulfa drugs were popular but with time, they were withdrawn from the market as they proved to be less effective and had adverse reactions. Same holds true for drugs like penicillin and tetracycline, to name a few, whose popularity declined with time. 

2. Covid has truly shocked the world. Can ayurveda treat the signs and symptoms of this deadly disease?

Covid19 starts with the normal flu, like many other diseases. The first day itself, we start ayurvedic medicines including immune boosters and regulators as coronavirus is a battle between the virus and your immune system. Then over a period of time, say five to seven days depending on the severity of the disease, we do other therapies like administering hot water (sugar water in case of fever) to the patient, rice gruel with spices like ginger and pepper, or thin mutton/lava soup for non-vegetarians and salt therapy on the back.

All this can be done even in addition to allopathy or regular medication in consultation with the allopathic doctors. Ayurveda, nourishing food and simple changes in lifestyle like pranayama and yoga can do wonders to your body and keep covid19 away forever. 

3. How is Ayurveda unique when compared to Western medicine? 

Be it a pathogen, bacteria or virus, modern medicines target the infection directly. But in the long run, it’s like a war between humans and pathogens and over time, pathogens develop an armory of their own. In this Ramayana, the Ravana (who is the pathogen) isn’t dying unless we become strong inside out!

For acute infections like the novel coronavirus, medicines may work but in the long run, we have to become stronger to withstand the assault, which isn’t only from the outside but inside too. Ayurveda in combination with yoga can be used to conquer not just covid but any disease and prevent its recurrence. 

4. A youngster today equates good health with six-pack-abs as opposed to core strength. What, according to you, is the importance of core strength? 

Youngsters today have a fascination for muscles and head to the gym to develop the same. But they don’t realise that core body strength is the strength of your vital organs, like lungs, heart and visceral organs. To develop this strength, one has to practice ‘yogasana’ and ‘pranayama’. As per the law of nature, early man was a four-legged creature. But with evolution, we learned to stand up and as a result of this erect posture, we may have lost some of our important strengths. So when we do yoga, most of the ‘asanas’ (named after animals like ‘makarasana’ and ‘gomukhasana’) require us to go down on all fours.This makes every part of our body strong. Combining this with ‘pranayama’ helps strengthen all the internal organs of the body, especially the lungs, which are extremely susceptible to diseases like covid-19. 

About the Doctor

Prof. Dr. H.T. Sreenivas

Former Joint Director, Department of AYUSH, Government of Karnataka.

He has overall 40 years of service in the Ayurveda practice.

  • Prof. Dr. H.T. Sreenivas completed his graduation and post-graduation from the Government Ayurveda Medical College, Bengaluru.
  • During 1978-79 – he worked as a physician at the Government Ayurvedic Dispensary, Hirehalli, Tumkur.
  • During 1979- 80 – he was appointed as Physician at Pondicherry through UPSC.
  • On 4th October 1980, he joined as Lecturer at the Government Taranth Ayurveda Medical College, Bellary, Karnataka.
  • During 2008 -11, he was on a concurrent duty working as Drug Licensing Authority, Department of AYUSH, Government of Karnataka.
  • During 2011-12, he worked as Joint Director, Department of AYUSH Government of Karnataka.
  • During 2012-17, he worked as a professor at Atreya Ayurveda Medical College, Doddaballapura, Karnataka.

He has also served as –

  • Joint Secretary, Karnataka Government Employees Association, Bengaluru.
  • President, Karnataka Government, AYUSH Teachers Association, Bengaluru.

5 Best Social Networks for Health and Fitness Conscious People

Technology has made our lives easier than ever with fitness and health industry evolving so much during the past few years. Maintaining a healthier lifestyle come in handy as there are number of applications or social fitness networks available for everyone where technology has proven to be beneficial in our day-to-day life.

But many people tend to quit all the efforts they put into maintaining a healthy lifestyle just because they aren’t motivated anymore. That’s when being on a social network platform is very much helpful. Technology has created a community that can act as your support system where you feel motivated by seeing others share their fitness journey and story towards a healthy life on social networks. You get to interact with users facing similar transitions and share your personal milestones with them. They can also offer some information and proper guidance along with encouragement and motivation.

Social networks not only have the potential to influence a person’s behaviours, beliefs and attitudes towards exercising but they also influence their engagement and commitment to physical activity and healthy lifestyles. Here’s a list of best social fitness networks or wellness platforms that stand out:

We have some exciting news of something interesting coming up for you in a couple of months.

Physeek.fit

1. Endomondo

Endomondo is one of the top-rated and very first social fitness network which allows you to track your workouts and analyze your personal training. It is accessible through both mobile applications and the web. Endomondo is ideal for running, cycling, walking and other distance sports. They were indeed the first to introduce branded challenges whereby users could compete with others for setting and reaching personal goals and winners get rewards.

Endomondo’s live feed records all the usual metrics, including your speed, duration, calories burned (based on the personal details you’ve entered while signing up), as well as heart rate when connected to a personal monitoring device via Bluetooth. It not only maps your routes with GPS tracking but it also offers one of the best features with an audio coach where it can interact with you via audio messages providing feedback on progress and encouragement during workouts. It offers a virtual training diary and data analysis. Once downloaded an internet connection is not required to use the app, except for it’s social features.

2. Strava

Strava is another best established social fitness network that’s grown massively popular over the years. It is most widely used by runners and cyclists where it’s live feed tracks the same variables as Endomondo with tracking speed, duration, calories, GPS mapping etc. It also has the best equipment tracking and the app is compatible with any personal monitoring device that it lets you figure out how many miles you’ve put on a pair of shoes before it’s time to get a replacement pair.

But it’s also packed with great features where it allows to break your workouts into segments without manual input, making it easier to track your improvements in each segment or compare with friends and club members. What makes Strava unique is it’s social element where it gives you an option to join Strava clubs near you and make some running buddies with whom you can compete and compare your data with the each other. It’s community is best known for creating a conversation between strangers where they regularly like and comment on people’s activities.You can even challenge yourself to beat them or increase your own workout. One of the major drawbacks of Strava is it’s not suitable for indoor sports or gym workouts.

3. MyFitnessPal

MyFitnessPal is the world’s leading on-the-go nutrition tracking site and mobile application with massive food database over five million foods. It offers a virtual food tracking diary so you can easily track your food intake and calories, as well as keep tabs on your intake. Digital calorie diaries are more effective than traditional self-reporting, because they give people direct feedback, and provides them with information about what is healthy for them specifically.

But such calorie tracking apps can be often misreporting from weighing inaccuracies, wrong portion sizes to consciously or subconsciously not entering food and drink consumed. Also people tend to find it too annoying to log every day or everything they consume. Some may rely on the app and the numbers too much instead of listening to their bodies hunger signals.

4. HealthifyMe

HealthifyMe is another popular Indian based digital health and wellness platform that provides services such as calorie tracking, one-on-one nutrition and fitness coaching, diet and workout plans. There are plenty of apps designed to make calorie counting and nutritional tracking easier but HealthifyMe tends to top the charts in India as they claim to have the largest Indian food database consisting of all varieties of regional and traditional cuisines native to the Indian subcontinent. Infact many users have shifted from MyFitnessPal to using HealthifyMe for this very reason.

One of their best features “Ria 2.0” – a conversational artificial intelligence (AI) enabled nutritionist,  gives more personalized suggestions based on user’s personal preferences and diet history. It enables users to keep a track of their calories, set personal fitness goals and measure progress. You can also ask questions on relevant topics and get answers. But Ria answers limited questions in the free version of their app where as unlimited questions come at a cost which isn’t cheap.

5. Cure Fit

Cure.fit is another India’s popular fitness and well-being app which is currently setting a trend with it’s four major features that comprises the app namely: physical fitness via Cult.fit, healthy eating via Eat.fit, mental well-being via Mind.fit and personal online consultation via Care.fit.

Cult.fit is a chain of fitness centres owned by Cure.fit where you can choose different workout programs such as Zumba, Yoga, Boxing, Strength & Conditioning, Sports Conditioning, HRX by Hrithik Roshan, Prowl by Tiger Shroff, Football and Running. They also offer DIY (Do-It-Yourself) sessions with suitable fitness videos on their app which you can explore under home workout.

Eat.fit is their online food ordering and delivery platform that delivers daily healthy meals.

Mind.fit is their one-stop mental solution which offers sessions in yoga, meditation and therapy which you can either take up at their Mind.fit centres or at home with their DIY videos on app.

Care.fit is dedicated to providing online consultation which includes health checkup at top-class health centres with in-house Pharmacy & Diagnostics facility. It offers zero wait time, 24*7 video consultation and free follow ups for the users.

Even though Cure.fit is currently trending in India, it’s majority of users are the customers who have either taken up the membership for any of these above mentioned services at their centres or for their online sessions.

Conclusion

There are many aspects and resources offered through this list of above mentioned apps but it’s important to understand which one works best for you.  All the best advanced features of these apps are locked behind a monthly or yearly paywall. And in order to enjoy it fully, you have to be a premium member or buy their subsciption. But many users seem to be happy with their freely accessible features as well.

There are other apps that are worthy of mention including Nike Training Club, Runtastic by Adidas, Freeletics, Fitocracy, Traineo, Daily Mile, etc., Many people aren’t aware of Apple’s in-built Health app and Google’s in-built Google fit app that come with iOS and Android respectively. Both the apps offer health tracking capabilities with added functions.

Thanks to technology that it allows to carry your virtual personal trainer around with you where ever you go. And if you find yourself not being happy with any of these wide variety of services available on the online platforms then we have some exciting news of something interesting coming up for you in couple of months.

Kindly stay tuned with us by filling in some of your details below and register with us, we’re a friendly bunch and we’re happy to help.

Physeek.fit team

The lesser-known yet dangerous signs of obesity that you should take seriously

Are you obese? Physeek asked a doctor so you don’t have to. Answer these questions to find out.

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