Breast milk is the prime source of nourishment to the new born child. Breast milk feeding improves immunity and strength of the baby. As per Ayurveda, mother’s food and activities affect the quality of the milk. If mother indulges in unwholesome diet and lifestyle habits, then the milk gets vitiated, in turn leading to diseases in the children. The vitiated milk is explained as ‘Dooshita Stanya’ in Ayurveda.
In such cases along with the child care, mother’s health also should be checked with due emphasis. In Ayurveda, certain herbs and medicines are specifically indicated for detoxifying the breast milk.
Reasons for vitiation of Stanya dushti (Breast milk):
Ajeernashana – consuming food when the person is suffering from indigestion.
Asatmya bhojana – unwholesome food – wrong food combination
Vishamashana (improper food intake) – taking food when person is not hungry.
Viruddhashana (incompatible food)
Atyartha bhojana (heavy food intake)
Lavana-amla-katu-kshara anna bhojana (excess intake of salty-sour-pungent and alkaline food)
Mana shareera santapa (factors causing stress and strain to the body and mind)
Nishi aswapna (night awakening)
Vega prateeghata (suppression of the urges)
Vega udeerana (forcible initiation of the urges)
Guda krita paramanna (kheer prepared by the jaggery)
Mandaka dadhi (wrongly formed curd)
Abhishyandi ahara (sticky food causing blockage of the channels)
Gramya anupa oudaka mamsa (flesh of the deserts,marshy land and aquatic animals)
Diwaswapna (day sleep)
Madyapana (alcohol intake)
Roga karshana (chronic diseases) etc
Features of vitiated breast milk (Stanya dushti):
Breast milk vitiation due to Vata dosha – Vataja Stanya Dushti:
Features of milk- Breast milk will have bluish black or pink tinge, possesses astringent taste, appears watery, loses taste gradually, dry, light and frothy in nature. The child will not be satisfied by its intake.
Disease features in the child-
Reduced voice, lean body parts/dystrophy, constipation, dysuria and bloating, gas distention.
Pittaja Stanya Dushti:
Features of milk- Breast milk will have black, blue or coppery in tinge, possesses bitter-sour or pungent taste, bad-bloody odors and warm. It will cause burning, ulceration and such other paittic disorders.
Disease features in the child- Excessive sweating, diarrhea, jaundice, thirst, warmth of the body (pyrexia).
Kapha vitiation of breast milk:
Features of milk-Breast milk will be pallor,more sweet,possesses more sweet taste or appears salty. It resembles like the ghee, oil, muscular fat or marrow and slimy in nature. Appears thready too.
Disease features in the child- Excess salivation, kaphaja disorders, excessive sleep, stiffness, laziness, vomiting and swelling in the face, eyes and extremities.
Tridosha vitiation: Mixed features.
Medication for Vitiation of Breast milk:
Vata breast milk vitiation:
The decoction prepared out of
Devadaru – Cedrus deodara
Katukarohini – Picrorhiza kurroa
Vacha – Acorus calamus
Kushtha – Saussurea lappa
Patha – Cyclea peltata
Bharngi – Clerodendron serratum
and ginger is administered to the mother.
If all the herbs are not available, at least a few herbs from the list can be selected for making Kashaya.
Ayurvedic medicines for Vataja Stanya Dushti:
Shunti ksheerapaka – 10 grams ( 2 teaspoons) of ginger powder is mixed with 80 – 100 ml (3 ounce) of milk and 100 ml of water. Boiled till only 100 ml (~3 ounce) remains. Filtered. This is given in a dose of 25 ml, once or twice a day after food.
Pitta breast milk vitiation:
The decoction prepared out of
Patola – Pointed gourd
Anantamoola – Hemidesmus indicus
Shatavari – Asparagus racemosus
Nimba – neem and
Chandana – Sandalwood is administered to the mother.
Kaphaja breast milk vitiation:
1.The decoction prepared out of
Musta – Cyperus rotundus
Vacha – Acorus calamus and
Ativisha – Aconitum heterophyllum
Ayurvedic medicines useful in Kaphaja Stanyadosha:
Sannipatic (All three Doshas) breast milk vitiation:
The decoction of Musta, Patha, Ativisha, Kushtha and Katukarohini is administered to the mother and child.
The decoction of Kiratatikta,Guduchi, Indrayava and Anantamoola is also useful.
- Vachadi yoga
- Pathadi choorna
- Chaturbhadra kashaya
- Rasnadi kashaya
Instructions to the mother:
If your Ayurvedic doctor has suggested medicines for breast milk detoxification, you can still continue to feed the baby while on medication.
It is always better to have a positive lifestyle with
– good amount of exercise,
– avoiding sitting at a single place for a long period of time,
– eating only when hungry,
– avoiding junk foods, smoking and alcohol etc.
Include a good amount of turmeric, ginger, cinnamon, cardamom and curry leaves in your diet.
Apart from physical activities, even mental status and habits of mother also have a great influence over the baby. Hence, stay positive, have constructive hobbies, be active, avoid excess TV and internet, do Pranayama and Yoga.
As the childcare needs very precise information about the food and habits of the mother as well as the child it is very essential to watch the daily routines of both the individuals. Even the minute changes are to be corrected immediately as the health of the child is a very delicate issue. Altered lifestyle now a days shows its immediate effect over the child. Cre and caution in this regard surely helps to prevent many childhood diseases.
Article by Dr MS Krishnamurthy and Dr Hebbar