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   Science of Naturopathy  
 
           Basics of Naturopathy
 

Naturopathy is science that elucidates how addition and removal of substance to the pool is bring about to restore the normal homeostatic condition, for treatment purpose as well on preventive scale.
Homeostatic system of body depends on adding and removing chemicals in the body so that constant pool is maintained for different metabolic pathways.
Treatment part of naturopathy directly deals with reorganization of disturbed homeostatic condition.
To restore normal homeostatic condition treatment modalities of naturopathy tries to balance

         
Heat gain and heat loss mechanism (thermoregulation)
         
Osmoregulation
         
Glucoregulation
These three are the key factor in maintaining homeostatic condition of body and are closely interrelated with each other.
Disturbance in either one for long time triggers disturbance of other regulatory system.
Correcting one of these effects brings healthy change in other system.
Maintenance of homeostatic condition in either state is determined by; Addition of a substance to the pool from

         
Gastrointestinal tract or lungs
         
Synthesized with in body
         
Released from storage deposits
Removal of substance from the pool through

         
Loss in urine, feaces, expiration, body surface.
         
Accumulation in storage deposits.
Body balance or homeostatic condition remains nearly constant when addition of substance is equal to the removal of substance.
If either addition is more than removal or addition is less than removal the homeostatic mechanism gets disturbs.
Disturbance in homeostatic mechanism is maintained by negative and positive feedback mechanism of body.
Factors of these feedback mechanisms are acute control and long term control system.
In naturopathy cold therapy, hot therapy, enema and diet regulation are course of action in treating disease and for prevention.

 @ How addition of substance to the pool is corrected in naturopathy:
Addition of substance to the pool is determined by hunger, appetite, and thirst and inspired air.
Amount of substance to be added is determined by hunger.
Type of food that person prefer is determined by appetite.
Amount of water taken by person according to requirement is determined by thirst.
Hunger is determined by:

         
Neural signal from gastrointestinal tract of stomach filling
         
Chemical signals from nutrient in the blood (glucose, amino acids and fatty acids)
         
Signals from Gastrointestinal tract hormone
         
Signals from hormones released by adipose tissue
         
Signals from cerebral cortex (sight, smell and taste).
Common disorders (decrease feeding or increase feeding) of hunger is due to

         
Deficiency of some nutrients
         
Excess of some nutrients
         
Disparity of nutrients.
Thirst is another mechanism of addition of substances to maintain balance of water and ions.
Common disorders in thirst is due to

         
ignoring stimuli of thirst
         
erroneous salt intake
These factors of disorder in hunger and thirst are some cause to disturb thermoregulation, osmoregulation and Glucoregulation process.
Naturopathy corrects the addition of substance to the pool is through:

1.      
Diet regulation like
         
fasting
         
water fasting
         
water, Honey and Lemon fasting
         
fruit juice fasting
         
fruit fasting
         
High fiber, high water content diet
         
Low protein diet
          Wholesome diet
2.      
Exercises, asanas and yoga.
Diet should be regulated in such a manner so that

         
Osmolarity is corrected by regulating inputs
         
Permeability of cell is maintained
         
Active transport system should be balanced
         
Proper maintenance of ions, vitamins and nutrient is done
These factors try to maintain thermoregulation, osmoregulation and glucoregulation process. Thus helps in maintaining homeostasis.

 @ How removal of substance from the pool is corrected in naturopathy:
Most of waste particle is end products of metabolism.
Organs that remove material outside the cell and body are skin, kidney, lungs and large intestine.

External changes of temperature in environment cause effect on cellular metabolism.
We, in naturopathy utilize this factor of change in temperature as therapeutic indices because effect of cold and hot for appropriate duration induces or stimulates
Hormones, Nervous system, Circulatory system, Lymphatics, Core Temperature.
To regulate these systems the external easiest access is skin. Skin covers the whole body. In order to adapt to the environment, skin is giant sense organ.
Skin is endowed with various plexus, arteriovenous anastomosis, sweat glands, nerve fibers, free nerve ending, lymphatic channels, thermoreceptors and nocireceptors.
There are far more cold receptors in many parts of skin than warmth receptors.
The deep body receptors are found only in certain parts of body, mainly in spinal cord, abdominal viscera and in and around great veins.
Deep receptors function differently from skin receptor as they are exposed to body core temperature.

Conduction, convection and radiation are methods of physiological system for heat balancing and osmoregulation which is done mostly by skin.
Naturopathy makes use of conduction, convection and radiation methods of physiological system in their treatment modalities to correct the disturbance in homeostatic condition.
Skin is object for application of treatment.

Water is medium of thermoregulation as well as osmoregulation.

Water is the medium for treatment in naturopathy for conduction
, convection and radiation.
Water has high specific heat several thousand times as great as that of air so that each unit portion of water adjacent to skin can absorbs far greater quantity of heat than can air.
Moreover, conductivity of water for heat is markedly high in comparison with that of air.
Various applications generate conduction, convection and radiation methods, which stimulate nervous system to cause vasoconstriction on cooling or vasodilatation on heating.
These in turn try to maintain core temperature with in their normal limits.
To counteract vasoconstriction and directly after vasodilatation:

         
Arterial pressure increases
         
Increases blood flow
         
Increase in blood glucose concentration
         
Increase in rate of blood coagulation.
Such responses of increase in local control of blood flow:

         
Deliver oxygen to tissue
         
Deliver another nutrients, amino acid, fatty acid and so forth
         
Removal of Co2 from tissue
         
Removal of H+ ions from tissue
         
Maintenance of proper concentration of other ions in tissue
         
Transport of various hormones and various chemicals in other tissue.
Removal of toxic material from cell and delivery of nutrition to cell balances heat gain heat loss mechanism and maintain proper ionic condition of cell.

pH and movement of ions and pressure of ion in and outside of cell maintain and strengthens osmoregulation.
The major organ of osmoregulation is kidney.
Kidneys play a very large role in human  osmoregulation. It regulate the amount of water and electrolyte balance in urine waste.
Regulate arterial pressure and acid base balance.

Osmoregulation is achieved by
processes of  filtration, reabsorption, secretion and excretion,through kidney.

Increase in local control of blood flow increases delivery of oxygen to the tissue. It removes carbon dioxide from tissue in to the blood. Increased carbon dioxide and hydrogen ions from tissue diffuse from the blood in to alveoli of lungs. This maintains oxygen and carbon dioxide level.
Transport of hormone like insulin, thyroxin and various chemicals in other tissue try to maintain concentration of nutrients by regularizing metabolism. This is glucoregulation.

Secretion of mineralocorticoid and glucocorticoid are key factors in regulation of osmoregulation and glucoregulation.
Repetitive erroneous of input and output is responsible for distorted homeostatic mechanism. To restore its normalcy repetitive application of treatment procedure is advised. 
Effects of repeated procedures is removal of stress on short term and long term control mechanism which in turn try to bring back the altered set point towards normalcy.
Restoring of normal set point is bringing homeostatic condition in healthy state.

To restore normal homeostatic mechanism repeated application of treatment procedure is applied.

   

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Mechanism and Effect of cold therapy

 

When cold therapy is applied on particular part of body or whole body, body temperature decreases.
Decrease in body temperature results in excitement of cold receptors and free nerve endings, beneath the skin.
Nerve carries signal through nerve fibers to stimulate the sympathetic centers of posterior hypothalamus.
Stimulation of posterior hypothalamus results in constriction of capillaries and arteriovenous anastomosis (Vasoconstriction).
Simultaneously as surface temperature decreases, core temperature tries to maintain body temperature constant.
In order to control the vasoconstriction primary motor center of posterior hypothalamus is activated.
This center than transmits signals, through bilateral tracts down the brain stem in to the spinal cord, and finally to anterior motor neurons of the site.
These signals increase the muscle activity throughout the body.
Heat production by metabolic system is increased. 
Norepinephrine and epinephrine in blood secreted by sympathetic stimulation trigger immediate increase in glucocorticoid hormone and various chemicals to increase rate of cellular metabolism.
Preoptic area of hypothalamus on cooling increases the production of neurosecretory hormone, thyrotropin-releasing hormone.
This in turn stimulates the secretion of thyroid stimulating hormone in anterior pituitary gland. 
This in turn stimulates thyroxin.
Increase of circulating thyroxin increases rate of cellular metabolism and chemical theromogensis.

 

 

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Mechanism and Effect of hot therapy

 

Hot application over particular parts of body or whole body for appropriate time increase the surface temperature of body.
Increase in surface temperature stimulates warmth receptors.
Signals are carried through nerve fibers to sympathetic centers of posterior hypothalamus. This inhibits posterior hypothalamus.
Inhibition of posterior hypothalamus causes vasodilatation.
As surface temperature increases above certain point, core temperature is affected. Effects of Vasodilatation
Improve blood flow.
Provides local warmth thus helps in tissue metabolism.
Increase nutrients.
Remove waste products.
Decrease venous congestion.
Reduces blood viscosity, improves the delivery of leukocytes.
Lymphatic circulation increases due to increase in permeability of capillary, which helps in removal of waste product and increased nutrient to cell.
In order to maintain body temperature constant, preoptic area of anterior hypothalamus excited and passes the impulse of sweating to cord through autonomic pathways and then through sympathetic nerves to skin.
Sweating is the process of removing excess heat from body.
Sodium and chloride ions are lost in profuse sweating. During this process precursor fluid is secreted. They pass through duct slowly so sodium and chloride ions are reabsorbed and their concentration falls to low. This fall, in concentration of ions reduces the osmotic pressure of fluid to such a level that water is also reabsorbed.
Decrease concentration of sodium and chloride ions allows progressively better conservation of salts.
Aldosterone is secreted as a result of decrease concentration of sodium and chloride ions, which helps in better conservation of salts.

This process helps in maintenance of electrolyte concentration.
Thus it helps in thermoregulation; it also helps in excretion of some salts like ammonia and by products.

 

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Note: - After Hot therapy, whole body cold bath is essential to attain maximum effect.

 

 

Enema

  Removal of waste material through large intestine

Distal part of colon and rectum are excretory organ for solid waste material.
After digestion in small intestine, absorption of water and electrolyte from chyme take place in proximal half of colon.
Feacal matter is store in distal half of colon.
When the mass movement forces faeces in to rectum, the desire for defecation is normally initiated.
Faecal matter is composed of normally th water and 1/4th solid matter composed of dead bacteria, fat, inorganic matter, protein, undigested roughage.
Anatomically the mucosa of large intestine is lined with Crypts of Lieberkuhn but villi are absent.
Epithelial cells of large intestine do not secrete enzymes.
Surface epithelial of large intestine contains large number of mucous cells dispersed among other epithelial cells, which secrete only mucous. Large amount of mucous is secreted.
Active transport of bicarbonate ions takes place by epithelial cells. The bicarbonate ions are present in large quantity in this mucous.
Mucous in large intestine protects the wall against excoriation and from bacterial activity that takes place inside the faeces, also provides the adherent medium for holding faecal matter together. Bicarbonate ions in mucous maintains the alkalinity of secretion i.e. pH.
Normally the movement of colon is sluggish.
Unhealthy life style or habit of neglecting the normal calls of defecation often leads to availability of faecal matter storage for a long time for absorption of fluid.
This thing associated with large quantities of dry hard faeces in descending colon.
When the dry hard faeces are stored in distal part of colon for long time, the chyme that enters in proximal part of colon is also available for long time.
Availability of faecal matter for long time results in increased absorption of fluid, Ca++, Cl- and Na+.
Increase in absorption of Ca+ causes constipation, lack of appetite, probably because of depressed contractility of muscle wall of gastro intestinal tract.
This effect the short term regulatory and long term regulatory system for feeding.
In order to maintain the pH and protect the wall from bacterial action, the secretion of mucous increases.
At the same time movement of large intestine increases to push forward the faecal matter.
All these factor leads to disturbed rhythm of large intestine. As a remedy for these disturbances Enema is used in naturopathy.

Treatment modalities in naturopathy
Hip bath, Mud pack, Mud bath, Whole body hot bath/cold bath, Cold packs, Spinal pressure bath, Chlorophyll bath, Sunbathe, Sauna bath, Steam bath, Hot foot bath/cold foot bath, Hot and cold affusion.

 

 

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