Anyone tried intestinal cleansing/pranayama to lower blood sugar?

While there are numerous peer-reviewed studies on the effect of pranayama on blood sugar, can anyone point me to any such study on shankaprakshalana (a yogic way of intestinal cleaning involving drinking 4-5 litres of water)?

In recent times, Swami Ramdev has been popularising this old approach (which has been used by several yoga/naturopathy centres, btw). I've tried this a few times in the past, but only once since I became diabetic -- and then forgot to test the sugar. Sw. Ramdev says he has thousands of cases of people whose blood glucose readings fell dramatically after this practice.

Anyone on this forum with personal experience of its effect on blood sugar or who know of any scientific studies (esp. on PubMed)?

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6 Replies

  • Thanks, AxEffect. Lots of general publications (the best one is Swami Satyananda Saraswathi's "Asanas, Pranayama, Bandhas" book; Bihar School of Yoga). The Scandinavian Yoga and Meditation School (Sw. Janakananda was his student in the 60s) also has an excellent article on its site and in its magazine, Bindu. But no scientific studies that I've come across, especially on PubMed. The only indirect one is Sw. Ramdev's collection of some 20,000 medical reports, but he himself admits repeatedly that it's not a controlled study or a double-blind one because of practical reasons.

  • I second opinion expressed by AxEffect. Diabetic patients do so much with their diet and exercise, it is difficult to quantify outcome of water intake and other ploys in absence of experimental design using control groups ...

  • Plus, as Sw. Ramdev says, how do you keep a group of cancer patients as a control group and suggest pranayama and other things only to the other group?

  • @krishnang

    My personal experience is there is a fall in not only blood sugar but also in bp when pranayama is practiced regularly.

    Added bonus you also don't get cold-cough infection.

    Every year I used to get this severe cold-cough during transition period from hot summer to cool rainy season. This year since I was detected diabetic from june 18th I am practicing yoga n pranayama and I am free from such infections.

    lchf has brought down my BS to normalcy apart from bringing down my BP (with 2.5 mg concor it was 80/130). Now my count is 65-75/115-125 without concor!

  • Good for you! Yes, pranayama's effects have been well-researched and well-documented, even in double-blind studies (JIPMER in Puducherry is doing considerable research on it). I myself have first-hand experience of halving my LDL with an hour's pranayama daily (other things were the same as before) over three months.

    Another technique that brings down blood sugar if done regularly is a practice called Yoga Nidra. Bihar School of Yoga has CDs and tapes, especially of Swami Satyananda Saraswathi, who first took out the mumbo-jumbo out of certain forms of meditation, experimented it on himself for 40 years and then taught people. It's pretty difficult to stay awake during the 40-minute tape--the only thing you have to do in the programme while lying down.

    But I was curious about shankaprakshalana.

  • I have personally experienced dramatic effects of pranayama on me. Every time I returned from tour of my ship service, first 2 weeks were miserable !!! I used to sneeze severely and had running nose. I contacted a few friends who were professors in Govt medical colleges in Mumbai, and, they all advised me to wear goggles and take anti allergy drugs. This helped me only temporarily . On viewing Sh Ramdevji over the TV, I started doing 15 minutes PRANAYAMA everyday, and, sneezing, running nose, eye irritation

    and eye infection DISAPPEARED FOR EVER !!! Till this date, I do Pranayama everyday for 10 to 15 minutes, no matter how busy I am. I have, very rarely had cough , cold, or eye irritation, since then !!!

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