Bone health in Ayurveda


  • Asti dhatu or bones are one of the seven main tissues of the body.
  • In Ayurveda, the bones and joints are considered the site of Vata in the body and are particularly prone to this element’s imbalances. The health of the tissues relies on tissue nutrition, which is ultimately a reflection of the health of Agni or digestive fire.
  • Follow a healthy diet and proper nutrition by including whole grains, lentils, a variety of vegetables, and fruits in the diet to supply all trace minerals needed to maintain healthy tissues. Good are dairy products, cereals, whole grains, leafy greens, broccoli, Brussels sprouts, cabbage, sprouts, beans, black lentils, chickpeas, mung beans, soy, coconut, meat, pineapples, apples, oranges, almonds, sesame seeds, hazelnuts, peanuts, seaweed, pumpkin seeds, flaxseeds, and honey.
  • Having a regular bowel movement is very important as constipation causes toxin build-up, which can clog the channels and prevent the proper absorption of nutrients.
  • Minimize the use of refined flour, refined sugar, excessive caffeine intake, antibiotics, and anti-inflammatory drugs as well as alcohol and smoking.
  • Regular physical exercise and gentle yoga practice will help.
  • Exposure to early morning sun is beneficial.
  • Maintain a stable normal or slightly higher body weight and a good posture. Regular oil massages, especially with sesame oil, can strengthen bones and joints.
  • 5 grams of sesame seeds with palm sugar help strengthen the bones.
  • Bone broth with spices like ginger or long pepper is beneficial.
  • A yearly Panchakarma detox and body treatments like leaf poultice, red rice poultice, oil massages, nourishing enemas (basti), Ayurveda herbs, and herbo-mineral preparations, etc. have proved to be very effective in joint and bone disorders.

Aparna K. BAMS, MD, PhD

Aparna is one of the few specialists worldwide with a PhD in Ayurveda. Born into an Ayurvedic family which operates a traditional Ayurvedic Panchakarma hospital in Kerala, India, she grew up observing her father, the renowned Dr Padmanabhan.

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