Rasa Jala Nidhi, vol 5: Treatment of various afflictions

by Bhudeb Mookerjee | 1938 | 63,627 words | ISBN-10: 8170305829 | ISBN-13: 9788170305828

This fifth volume of the Rasa-jala-nidhi deals with the symptoms, treatment and dietary prescriptions of various afflictions. For example, ratapitta (haemoptysis), cough, asthma, tumours and obesity are dealth with and various Iatro-chemical recipes are provided for these diseases. The Rasa-jala-nidhi (“the ocean of Iatrochemistry, or, chemical me...

Chapter 17 - Symptoms and Treatment of Medoroga (obesity)

Its causes and symptoms:—

Insufficiency of physical exertion, sleeping in day time, and taking of food increasing phlegm are causes which increase sweetness in the rasa or chyle (essence of the food consumed), making it generate more fat than is actually required for the proper maintenance of the body. Fat (medas), thus, accumulates in the system, and the fluid-carrying passages having been blocked by fat, the other dhatus[1] stand a very little chance of being developed. A fatty man thus becomes in-active.

The following are the symptoms of obesity

Shortness of breath, thirst, bewilderment, sleepiness, difficulty in breathing, weariness, hunger, perspiration, bad odour coming out of the body, loss of strength, and loss of power of sexual intercourse. The belly and the bones are the natural seat of fat, which, therefore, accumulates in those places. The proper passages for the movement of wind in the stomach having been blocked by fat, the confined wind increases the digesting heat and consumes food very quickly. A fatty man, therefore, hankers after food more quickly and oftener than a man in a normal state of health. In case, he does not take food at the time he craves for it, he is attacked by several ailments.

Treatment of obesity: Simple remedies.

(1) Obesity (medoroga) is cared by physical exercise, disturbing thoughts, sexual intercourse, walking by foot, drinking of honey, avoidance of sleep as much as possible, taking of barley and shyama rice.

(2) Obesity is cured by drinking, in the morning, honey mixed with water and paste of boiled rice while it is still hot.

(3) Obesity is cured and digesting heat is increased by the drinking of fried and powdered barley dissolved with the watery portion of curd and mixed with (one rakti in weight of each of) the following:—chavay, jira, trikatu, hingu, saltpetre (or sauvarchala salt), and root of chitraka.

(4) An excess of kapha, fat (medas), and vayu is pacified in six months by taking triphala, trikatu, oil, and salt.

(5) Obesity is cured by taking peya[2] prepared with pestled leaves of badari and kanji (seepage vol. III); or (6) by drinking shilajatu dissolved with the decoction of agnimantha.

(6) Orpiment, pestled with cow’s urine and applied on the place, affected, cures leprosy. It cures bad odour coming out of the arm-pit and other parts of the body, if pestled with milk and applied on the places concerned. It serves as a charm for attraction of other people, if applied on the forehead after having been rubbed with milk, haridra, and daru-haridra.

(8) Bad odour coming out of the body is removed by smearing the. affected parts with the Juice of the leaves of tamarind, and rubbing those parts with turmeric, burnt by puta.

(9) Skin disease and perspiration (not caused by heat or physical exertion) are cured by rubbing the affected parts with the powder of, or paste prepared from, the following:—bark of shirisha, lamajjaka (a kind of sweet-smelling grass), naga-keshara, and lodhra.

(10) Bad odour coming out of the body is cured by the application of the paste prepared from tejapatra, balaka, aguru, haritaki, and chandana (sandal).

(11) Bad odour coming out of the body is cured by the application of the paste prepared from the juice of leaves of basaka or bilva, mixed with powdered conch-shell.

Iatro-chemical treatment for obesity.

Amoghadya lauha.

One part, each, of vidanga, triphala, musta pippali, shunthi, bilva, red sandal, balaka, patha, ushira, and bala, and eleven parts of iron are to be rubbed together with water and a little of clarified butter, and made into pills, six raktis in weight, each, to be taken with half a tola of water. This medicine cures all sorts of obesity (medoroga), diabetes, and many other diseases. It increases appetite, beauty, and longevity.

Jatayu lauha.

Forty tolas, each, of guggula, talamuli, triphala, khadira, vasaka, tribrit, mundiri, snuhi, nirgundi, roots of chitraka, and shati are to be boiled with five adhakas (or 5 x 256 tolas) of water, which is to be reduced by boiling to 320 tolas (or five prasthas). This decoction is to be mixed with twelve palas of steel, one prastha of old clarified butter, and eight palas of sugar, and boiled together in a copper pot till the whole thing turns semi-solid. It is then to be cooled and mixed with 32 tolas of honey, eight tolas of shilajatu, two tolas of the skin, of ela, twelve tolas of vidanga; and two tolas, each, of maricha, anjana, pippali, triphala, and kasisa (sulphate of iron), all finely powdered, and rubbed together. The compound, thus prepared, is to be kept in a pot, the inner surface of which has been smeared with clarified butter. Dose, one tola, a day. Milk or soup of meat juice is to be drunk after taking this medicine. This medicine cures an abnormal excess of vayu and kapha, leprosy, fever, jaundice, anemia, swelling due to anemia, fistula, epilepsy, bewilderment, insanity due to poison, all sorts of artificial poison, and especially obesity and fat (medas) in the belly. It is a tonic and aphrodisiac. The following are not to be taken at the time of taking this medicine:—banana, tubers (such as shurana), kanji, karamarda, karira, kerabella, and other articles named with at the beginning (see pages 204-5 Vol. I).

Vijayadya lauha.

One part, each, of bhanga, trikatu, chavya, roots of chitraka, rock-salt, and sauvarchala (salt-petre), and six parts of iron are to be mixed together. Dose, six to twelve raktis, a day, to be taken with honey and clarified butter. This medicine cures spermatorrea, leprosy, obesity, etc.

Aurvanala rasa.

Equal quantities of incinerated mercury, orpiment, iron, and copper are to be rubbed together with the juice of arka plant, and taken in doses of three raktis, each, with honey, or with honey and clarified butter, if there is an excess of phlegm. This medicine cures swelling, shula, and obesity (medoroga).

Aurvagni rasa.

Equal quantities of mercury, sulphur, copper, and orpiment are to be rubbed together with the milk of arka for one day. Dose, three raktis, each, to be taken with honey. This medicine cures obesity,

Krishna lauha.

Equal quantities of incinerated black iron, vidanga, shunthi, and javakshara are to be ribbed together and mixed with a meal containing powdered barley and amalaki, This cures obesity.

Agni-vilasa rasa.

Two tolas, each, of mercury and sulphur are to be rubbed together for one day to form a fine black powder. This is then to be rubbed gradually with eight tolas of the juice of the leaves of hansapadi, and made into a lump. This is to be dried and put into a glass bottle with one tola of powdered aconite put below and upon the lump. A tube made of thin copper foil (the outer circumference of which is to be a little less than the inner circumference of the upper part of the bottle) is to be fitted to the mouth of the bottle in such a way as a portion of the tube approaches the inner neck of the bottle. The outer surface of the bottle is then to be costed, (seven times) with rags mixed with mud, the total thickness of the coating being one and half inch. When dried, the glass bottle is to be turned up-side down in a Valuka-yantra which is to be duly filled with sands (see page 259 vol. I). The mouth of the vessel containing sands is then to he closed, as usual, and heated for thirty six hours by fire gradually increasing in intensity. When cooled, the medicine is to be taken out and powdered with the copper tube, two tolas of maricha, and half a tola of aconite. (According to Nandi, the quantity of maricha, as used here, should be equal to that of the medicine including the copper tube, and the quantity of the aconite should be one tola). Dose one rakti This medicine cures all shorts of diseases, especially, anaha, obesity (medoroga), asthila, grahani, consumption due to vayu and kapha, jaundice, asthma, cough, shula, throat troubles, and fever. Dose, one rakti, a day. The medicine is to be taken with a little of powdered pippali, sugar, and clarified butter, all these being kept in half the portion of a betel leaf.

In case of a sensation of heat being felt by the patient, bis head should be wetted with cold water, and the remaining parts of the body sponged with the same. Bath in cold water may also be taken, if considered necessary. His body is then to be smeared with paste prepared from sandal and camphor. He is also to be exposed to soft wind. Fresh curd, cocoanut water mixed with sugar, and other sweet and cold drinks are also beneficial to him.

In case of troubles arising out of taking a rasa medicine wrongly, prepared or taken in excess, tasambu (see page 382, vol. III) is to be drunk, mixed with tankana (borax, burst into white ashes), pestled roots of meghanada, sugar, jastimadhu, and sandal. In such cases the following may also be prescribed:—(a) smearing the whole body with the juice of kanya, (b) drinking of milk with honey and sugar, (c) drinking of the decoction of guduchi and piyala. If there is vomiting or thirst, ripe kapittha fruit mixed with sugar may be taken by the patient.

Deeds and diet salutary in obesity:—

Brooding, exertion, keeping late hours at night, sexual intercourse, rubbing the body with pestled turmeric or amalaki, fasting, exposure to the sun’s rays, riding on horses and elephants, walking, purgation, vomiting, taking distasteful food (such as bitters, sours, astringents, pungents, in excess); old rice of kodo, shyama, nibara, and kanguni; barley, kulattha, chanaka, masura, mudga, adhaki, honey, fried paddy divested of husks; pungents, bitters, astringents, buttermilk, liquor, chingata fish, roasted egg fruit (bartaku), triphala, guggulu, kakamachi, trikatu, rubbing the body with mustard oil, ela, taking of every thing rough and devoid of fatty substance, rubbing the body with oil extracted from sesamum seeds; pot herbs, smearing the skin with paste prepared from aguru, drinking of hot water, shilajatu, and drinking of water just before the commencement of taking meal.

Deeds and articles of food-stuff injurious in obesity:—

Taking bath, faking such medicines as are called rasayana (i.e., medicine which cures diseases and destroys senile decay), shall rice, wheat, everything yielding comforts, food prepared from milk and juice of sugarcane, masha-grams, nutritious food, drinking of clarified butter, marrow, and fat of animals, fish, meat, sleeping in daytime, wearing of garlands, using of perfumed oil, etc, taking of sweets, and drinking of water after completion of the whole meal.

Vomiting is injurious to a highly fatty man.

Footnotes and references:


Dhatus are the constituent parts of the body. They are: chyle, blood, flesh, bone, marrow, fat, and semen.


Peya is rice boiled with fourteen times its weight of water and turned semi-liquid.


Rasasastra category This concludes ‘Symptoms and Treatment of Medoroga (obesity)’ included in Bhudeb Mookerjee Rasa Jala Nidhi, vol 5: Initiation, Mercury and Laboratory. The text includes treatments, recipes and remedies and is categorised as Rasa Shastra: an important branch of Ayurveda that specialises in medicinal/ herbal chemistry, alchemy and mineralogy, for the purpose of prolonging and preserving life.

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