Pancreas is a gland of digestive system. The pancreas produces insulin and digestive enzymes, the latter fed by a duct to the duodenum. The endocrine–that is, ductless–part of the pancreas is in its production of insulin, which is dumped directly into the blood stream. Without insulin, one cannot properly metabolize blood sugar. Some one who cannot metabolize blood sugar becomes diabetic.
There are different causes of the pancreatic disorder. They are
- Excessive alcohol intake
- Gallstones blocking the bile tubes
- Excessive medication and drugs
- Excessive eating of sugars such as sweets, biscuits, cookies, cakes, pasta, and bread
- Genetic abnormalities
The symptoms of pancreatic disorder are
- Spots (on Pancreas)
- Pain in the upper abdomen
- Jaundice- Yellowing of the skin and eyes
- Back pain
- Loss of appetite
Acute pancreatitis can lead to Dehydration, Low blood pressure, Shock, Organ Failure and Death.Chronic pancreatitis is a worse inflammation that does not heal, and it results in permanent pancreatic damage.
There are a variety of disorders of the pancreas including acute pancreatitis, chronic pancreatitis, hereditary pancreatitis, Hyperglycemia (Diabetes), Hypoglycemia and pancreatic cancer.
The evaluation of pancreatic diseases can be difficult due to the inaccessibility of the pancreas. There are multiple methods to evaluate the pancreas. Initial tests of the pancreas include a physical examination, which is difficult since the pancreas is deep in the abdomen near the spine. Blood tests are often helpful in determining whether the pancreas is involved in a specific symptom but may be misleading. The best radiographic tests to evaluate the structure of the pancreas include CAT (computed tomography) scan, endoscopic ultrasound, and MRI (magnetic resonance imaging). Tests to evaluate the pancreatic ducts include ERCP (endoscopic retrograde cholangiopancreatography) and MRCP(magnetic resonance cholangiopancreatography). There are also instances in which surgical exploration is the only way to confirm the diagnosis of pancreatic disease.
Astrologically fundamental factors for pancreas related disease are:
- Planets – Jupiter (ruling all pancreatic physiology, arterial system, glands, liver/gall bladder, pancreas gland, digestion, absorptive power, ears/hearing power, navel, feet, physical development, palate, throat, the hips and the fat tissue), Moon (ruling pancreatic fluids, stomach, digestive system), Mars (ruling exocrine action of the pancreas involving gastric digestion i.e. splitting up of fats), Pluto (ruling pancreas, metabolism)
- Signs – Virgo (ruling digestive system, intestines), Aries / Pisces (few consider them as head / tail of pancreas); Cancer (ruling pancreatic fluids, stomach, digestive system)
- Constellations –
- Houses – 6th House (acute problem); few also takes 5th house for abdomen including pancreas; 8th house (chronic condition); 12th house (suffering)
- Fixed Star – Polaris, Polaris, Labrum, Zavijava (center of pancreas), Markeb (lower part of pancreas); Zaniah (intestine)
Pancreatic Disorder – Mars and Neptune; 6th House / Virgo; Affliction by Saturn / Rahu / Ketu etc to Mars/Neptune/Virgo/6th House
Insulin and Glucagon Harmone: Pluto / Venus; Taurus
Somatostatin, and pancreatic polypeptide – Jupiter / Pluto
Ketu being dry planet, if weak / afflicting ends up in low blood pressure, deafness, wounds, inflammations, fevers, intestinal disorders, aberrations, defective speech and gives emaciated body with prominent veins.
If Jupiter is not placed well in the horoscope, it can lead to obesity and pancreatic issues which then leads to insulin imbalance, and therefore, type II diabetes. Jupiter in the EIghth is the least harmful planet in the House of Death but it causes pancreatic diseseas and jaundice.
Venus in the Eighth causes sexual weakness and diabetes.
Amongst Fixed Stars Pancreas ruling stars are: Polaris, Labrum, Zavijava (center of pancreas), Markeb (lower part of pancreas); Zaniah (intestine)
If virgo, Sun, 5th house, 5th lord, and Jupiter makes relation with 6th,8th,12th lords or afflicted by Rahu, Ketu, Mars and Saturn or afflicted by maraka planet then there is much possibility of cancer in pancreas. The role of Rahu and Ketu is much in this respect. Because Rahu is responsible for malignant growth and Ketu is of hidden disease i.e. those diseases which are not detected easily.
The moon rules the pancreas. Since the transiting moon moves so quickly, you might look to your progressed moon, or to transits or progressions to your natal moon.
Generally, acute inflammations of the pancreas (pancreatitis) involve Mars; recurrent inflammations (periodical) would bring in the Moon; chronic conditions would involve Jupiter with negative connections with Saturn (especially) but also possibly with Sun, Venus, Uranus (Pluto also for subtle, mysterious and deep-seated long term conditions), elusive, undiagnosed conditions, by Neptune.
Pancreatic Dysfunction—Mars and Neptune, The Planets Involved in Immune Dysfunction and Other “Crazy” Human Conditions
Mars symbolizes initiative, aggression, strife, cuts, tears, friction, injuries, and chemicals (the burning or corrosive aspect), among other things. Negatively, on a physical level it tends to represent some kind of attack against or injury of the body.
Neptune symbolizes confusion, fantasy, creativity, openness, porosity, and also fumes and gases. Neptune symbolizes porosity because it has a tendency to “dissolve” planets it is in contact with, making them more sensitive and porous than is their wont.
Neptune combined with mars produces an over-sensitivity resulting in noxious, confused, or highly charged reactions. Or, it places the individual in noxious conditions. Or, it renders their behavior at odds relative to normal behavior, as can be seen with paranoid schizophrenia, with neptune alone representing non-paranoid schizophrenia. Mars/neptune describes “crazy” or “highly emotional” or “charged” conditions astrologically. So, for instance, when involved with the sexual planets venus and neptune in a man’s or woman’s chart, whether heterosexual or homosexual, it deepens and sensitizes sexuality, putting a high charge on it, compelling involvement.
When saturn joins mars and neptune as an influence, it increases their other-than-normal results. Forefront (i.e., on an Angle) in any chart mars/saturn/neptune represents siege conditions. Saturn does notproduce, for instance, immune dysfunction. Mars and neptune do. But with saturn added, it aggravates any condition, making it life threatening, highly inflamed, or potently toxic. Saturn has a depressive effect on vitality.
The signs have rulership of a region of the body and the planets perform the functions within that region. There is often a tendency to say that, e.g., Mercury rules the lungs because they fall under Gemini, whereas it is Mercury that is responsible for the respiratory performance of/within them. However Elemental distribution is also going to effect how efficiently the body can deal with disorders within it.
Acute pancreatitis is a sudden attack causing inflammation of the pancreas and is usually associated with severe upper abdominal pain. The pain may be severe and last several days. Other symptoms of acute pancreatitis include nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, bloating, and fever. In the United States, the most common cause of acute pancreatitis is gallstones. Other causes include chronic alcohol consumption, hereditary conditions, trauma, medications, infections, electrolyte abnormalities, high lipid levels, hormonal abnormalities, or other unknown causes.
Chronic pancreatitis is the progressive disorder associated with the destruction of the pancreas. The disease is more common in men and usually develops in persons between 30 and 40 years of age. Initially, chronic pancreatitis may be confused with acute pancreatitis because the symptoms are similar. The most common symptoms are upper abdominal pain and diarrhea. As the disease becomes more chronic, patients can develop malnutrition and weight loss. If the pancreas becomes destroyed in the latter stages of the disease, patients may develop diabetes mellitus.
The most common cause of chronic pancreatitis in the United States is chronic alcohol consumption. Additional causes include cystic fibrosis and other hereditary disorders of the pancreas.
In some cases, pancreatitis is related to inherited abnormalities of the pancreas or intestine. Acute recurrent attacks of pancreatitis early in life (under age 30) can often progress to chronic pancreatitis. The most common inherited disorder that leads to chronic pancreatitis is cystic fibrosis. Recent research demonstrates genetic testing can be a valuable tool in identifying patients predisposed to hereditary pancreatitis.
As in chronic pancreatitis, hereditary pancreatitis is a progressive disease with a high risk of permanent problems. Patients with these disorders may have chronic pain, diarrhea, malnutrition, or diabetes. Treatment focuses on pain control and pancreatic enzyme replacement.
Pancreatic cancer is the fourth most common cause of cancer death in men and the fifth in women. It accounts for more than 37,000 new cases per year in the United States. Cancer of the pancreas is resistant to many standard treatments including chemotherapy and radiation therapy. This cancer grows insidiously and initially does not cause symptoms. The classic presentation of pancreatic cancer is referred to as painless jaundice, a yellowish skin discoloration with no other symptoms. The diagnosis is usually made using different radiographic imaging techniques.
If detected in the early stages, pancreatic cancer can be cured by surgical resection. Unfortunately, early detection is more the exception than the rule. At later stages, treatment can improve the quality of life by controlling symptoms and complications.
A natural extract derived from Neem tree could potentially be used to treat the highly lethal pancreatic cancer, says a team of researchers including Indian-origin scientists.
The results revealed that nimbolide, an active molecule isolated from Neem tree (Azadirachta indica), can stop pancreatic cancer’s growth and spread without harming normal, healthy cells.
“The promise nimbolide has shown is amazing, and the specificity of the treatment towards cancer cells over normal cells is very intriguing,” said Rajkumar Lakshmanaswamy, associate professor at Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center El Paso in the US.
Pancreatic cancer has the highest mortality rate of all cancers with 94 percent of patients dying within five years of diagnosis.
The cancer grows quickly and there are currently no effective treatments available.
In the study, Lakshmanaswamy and colleagues observed that nimbolide was able to reduce the migration and invasion capabilities of pancreatic cancer cells by 70 percent — meaning the cancerous cells did not become aggressive and spread.
And that is promising, the researchers said.
In humans, this migration and invasion — or metastasis — of pancreatic cancer to other regions of the body is the chief cause of mortality.
Nimbolide treatments also induced cancer cell death, causing the size and number of pancreatic cancer cell colonies to drop by 80 percent.
“Nimbolide seems to attack pancreatic cancer from all angles,” Lakshmanaswamy said.
What is more, the Neem compound did not harm healthy cells in both the in vitro and in vivo experiments.
“Many people in India actually eat neem and it doesn’t have harmful side effects, which suggests that using nimbolide for pancreatic cancer will not cause adverse effects like chemotherapy and radiation typically do,” study lead author Ramadevi Subramani, postdoctoral researcher at Texas Tech University Health Sciences Centre, said.
The findings appeared in the journal Scientific Reports.
The researchers said they plan to continue researching the anticancer mechanisms behind the plant extract.
In Ayurveda, Pancreas are also known as ‘grahani’ and is considered as the special seat of agni (fire) in the body. Pancreatitis in the initial phase is Vata-Pita (air & fire elements) leading to aggravation in digestive fluids situated in pancreas, and in chronic stage there is degenerative changes observed.
Ayurveda basically rejuvenates the pancreas and restores its functioning, i.e., its role of producing insulin. When pancreatitis has progressed to a chronic stage, it is managed with medicines and dietary guidelines.
Herbs / Natural Cure for Pancrea related disorder:
Turmeric – Numerous studies have been conducted over the years to look at the connection between turmeric and pancreatitis. In a 2011 study published in the “International Journal of Molecular Medicine” looked at the possible protective effects of turmeric and determined that the administration of turmeric to patients may play a protective role against the development of acute pancreatitis and any pancreatitis-associated lung injuries. A study from 2009 published in “Alternative Medicine Review” found that turmeric may have potential therapeutic qualities to treat diseases such as inflammatory bowel disease, arthritis, certain types of cancer and pancreatitis.
Indian Gooseberry. Apart from powerful antioxidant properties, it is also one of the richest sources of vitamin C. The antioxidants of gooseberry help the body to neutralize free radicals that are thought to play a role in pancreatitis and other health conditions.
Dandelion Root – It improves digestion of fats by improving bile production. Also, ‘licorice’ is an excellent anti-inflammatory. ‘Cramp bark (Viburnum opulus)’ will help ease inflammation, cramping and pain.
Among the other remedies recommended by Ayurvedic physicians are: Chebula, Behada or Terminalia, Yashtimadhuk, Haritaki etc., which form the main stay of treatment for his condition.
It is also said that antioxidant-rich foods like blueberries are a traditional pancreatic remedy, due to their high antioxidant content.
Ginger Tea: Ginger tea works as an antioxidant, it is a sedative and reduces inflammation in the body, thus cleanses your body.
Green Tea: Green tea is also an excellent antioxidant. If you start drinking a cup of green tea regularly during breakfast or in the afternoon, this will help cleanse the pancreas.
Licorice Infusion: Licorice infusion is a great digestive root. It boosts the production of bile, which helps in the proper digestion of food.
Start taking a glass of lemon juice and warm water early in the morning.
You can intake pineapple and papaya juice daily. This will recover the health of the pancreas.
Nut grass (Cyperus rotundus) has anti-inflammatory and anti-oxidant properties. It works well in reducing inflammation of pancreas. It reduces abdominal pain and increases appetite. It is also beneficial in reducing fats in the stools.
How to Use
- Take two glasses of water and add 3 grams nut grass powder.
- Boil the water with nut grass powder and simmer it until the water remains half.
- Now, add a pinch of black pepper and Kala Namak.
Drink this water once every day for a month. Sipping nut grass water frequently in a day can also help tremendously in chronic pancreatitis.
If you have symptoms like bloating, intestinal gas and abdominal distention, then add a slice of ginger along with nut grass powder. Nut grass powder may cause bloating when taken in excess dosage.
Giloy and Ginger
Giloy is digestive stimulant, detoxifier, adaptogenic, anti-inflammatory, immuno-modulator and anti-oxidant. Therefore, it is also effective in reducing chronic inflammation of the pancreas.
Ginger also has anti-inflammatory, antispasmodic and digestive stimulant properties.
The combination of Giloy and ginger helps reducing inflammation, pain, steatorrhea and excessive thirst that occurs in the pancreatitis.
How to Use
- Take 3 grams Giloy powder (or 500 mg Giloy Satva) and 500 mg dried ginger powder and mix them.
- Take this mixture twice a day with warm water.
- Alternatively, you can also use Giloy juice and ginger juice. For this, take 20 ml Fresh Giloy juice and add a half teaspoon of fresh ginger juice. Drink it 30 to 60 minutes before meal.
Bitter Gourd (Karela) Juice
Bitter Gourd is also effective in pancreatitis. It reduces inflammation, rectifies pancreas functions and prevents gallbladder stone formation. It is also used as adjuvant for some ayurvedic medicines used in gall bladder stones.
How to Use
- Take fresh Bitter gourd and extract its juice.
- Take 20 ml bitter gourd juice for a few days and then increase its dosage to 50 ml per day in divided doses.
However, some people may feel difficulty to drink bitter gourd juice. People with pancreatitis may experience loss of appetite after taking this juice. However, it is uncommon and in fact, bitter gourd improves appetite. If you feel loss of appetite or indigestion after taking it, then it may occur due to bitter taste of bitter gourd. You should start drinking 5-10 ml juice from first day, and then you can increase its dosage as per your comfort to 50 ml a day (in divided doses).
Ajwain – Ajwain smells like thyme because it contains the same aromatic oil, thymol. Compared to thyme, ajwain is brighter, stronger, and less subtle. It is slightly bitter and very sharp, akin to black pepper but more etheric in quality. The vitality (prana) and lightness of ajwain is intrinsic to its taste. Its aromatic oils disperse blood and dilate blood vessels, while its pungent spiciness stimulates the heart for an altogether refreshing effect on the circulation. Ajwain rivals asafoetida in its ability to relieve gas and bloating. It warms up cold digestion and relaxes intestinal cramping due to colic. Use with any foods that take a long time to digest. Its fiery nature increases bile, aggravating hot Pitta constitutions. Overuse in summer may cause you to sweat, aggravating dryness in Vata.
One of the most important ways to tackle this condition and maintain proper functioning of pancreas are modification of diet and lifestyle. Include foods rich in omega-3 fatty acids, veggies, nuts, cereals, beans, and fruit, which help protect against diseases and disorders of pancreas.
If you get enough sunshine on the skin, the body will make it’s own vitamin D. This will help to block the proliferation of cancerous cells.Thus, it protects the pancreas from being damaged by these cells.
Follow a Satvik diet and totally shun refined items. Limit meat consumption and have only low fat foods. Drinking plenty of water is essential, as pancreatitis cause dehydration. It is also essential to cut out sugars, tobacco and alcohol completely.
However, among all, buttermilk and Indian Gooseberry are the best of foods suggested by Ayurveda for chronic pancreatitis.
In general foods having a pungent and sour taste are to be avoided, apart from avoiding refrigerated foods like ice cream, refined sugar and wheat flour, fried food, fast food, raw onion, garlic, hot spicy food, etc.
Few More Home Remedies for Pancreatic Disorder
1. You can take a fresh juice of an apple, a beetroot, and one lemon. Now add 2 tablespoons of olive oil or rapeseed oil in it. Drink the juice daily;
2. You can take a juice of half lemon, add 1 teaspoon of olive oil or rapeseed oil and add 1/8 teaspoon of garlic powder to it. Drink this once a day.
3. Take about 250g of ground black seed, 1 tablespoon of pure honey and ½ teaspoon of black seed oil. Now mix them thoroughly in a half cup of hot water. Take this an empty stomach early in the morning.
4. Take half a teaspoon of turmeric daily. Turmeric has antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. It can improve the solubility of bile. It can dissolve as many as 80% of gallstones.
5. You can intake Oregon grape daily. It enhances blood flow to the liver and increases bile production.
6. You can also take Oregon grape with dandelion and milk thistle and consume it in tea. This can help you.
7. Oregon grape, dandelion, milk thistle can be blended with herbs such as chamomile, marshmallow, and slippery elm. This mixture will also help decrease gallbladder inflammation.
8. Take 1/2 teaspoon of cinnamon and 1/4 teaspoon of nutmeg and boil it with a glass of goat’s milk. You can also add honey to it. Drink this in the night time every day.
9. You can trim the sharp edges off young milk thistle leaves and mix them with dandelion greens. Now, you can intake them raw or even steam them. Also, these herbs can be used in the tea.
10. Consume a full bowl of fresh yogurt; it is a protein pack that soothes your stomach.
11. Intake a glass of warm goat’s milk daily before going to bed, this will help your digestion and cleanse your pancreas.
It is most important to avoid the following food items when you are facing pancreatic disorder
- meat consumption
- tobacco and alcohol
- Jams, cakes, sweets, already made meals
- bread, pizza, pasta, pies, cakes, biscuits, and puddings.
- Grains like wheat, rice, rye, barley, oats, and maize
- Root vegetables like potatoes, parsnips, carrots, beetroot
Haridwar-based Ayurvedic practitioner Vaidya Balendu Prakash has claimed that a drug which is a combination of copper, mercury, sulphur and rare herbs can cure hard to treat chronic pancreatitis. His research has found that the disease linked with alcohol consumption actually has an association with lack of protein and mineral deficiency. As per our findings we have come to the conclusion that protein scarce meals and deficiency of minerals in the body causes the disease. Ninety percent of the patients are not alcoholic,” Prakash said. He claimed that 76 patients have been permanently cured of the disease within one year from the onset of treatment.