A clinical trial from the University of California-San Diego School of Medicine found that participants in a sixday, ayurvedic-based, well-being program showed metabolic improvements in blood tests for inflammation, cardiovascular disease risk (CDR) and cholesterol levels.
Study participants consisted of 119 healthy men and women between the ages of 30 and 80. Sixty-five experienced a panchakarma program, a detox and rejuvenation protocol involving a vegetarian diet, meditation, yoga, massage, herbal therapy and other healing therapies. The other 54 served as a control group. Blood was analyzed before and after the test period.
The researchers, led by Dr. Deepak Chopra, found measurable decreases in 12 phosphatidycholines (cell-membrane chemicals) associated with cholesterol, inflammation, CDR and Type 2 diabetes risk. They acknowledge that due to the short duration of the trial, the immediate changes were likely attributable to the vegetarian diet; more research is needed to determine the complementary role of the other therapies.
“It appears that a one-week panchakarma program can significantly alter the metabolic profile of the person undergoing it,” says Chopra.