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Mahatma Gandhi's Underweight Health Records Revealed For the 1st Time; Know his Heart Health, Serious Diseases

Mahatma Gandhi’s personal health records have been made public for the very first time. The health file reveals that Gandhi ji was as prone to illness as anyone else and suffered for a long time with high blood pressure.

Tooba Maher

Mahatma Gandhi’s personal health records have been made public for the very first time. The health file reveals that Gandhi ji was as prone to illness as anyone else and suffered for a long time with high blood pressure.  

Very well preserved in the National Gandhi Museum in New Delhi, Mahatma Gandhi's health files have now been published for the first time in the book "Gandhi and Health @ 150" by the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR). It was released in Dharamshala by the 14th Dalai Lama who said the Mahatma's philosophy of ahimsa (non-violence) and mental hygiene are very relevant even in the 21st century. 

Gandhi ji weighed merely 46.7 kilograms and his height was five feet five inches or 165 centimetres as recorded in 1939. This gave him a body mass index of 17.1 - which, according to current estimates, means an "underweight" individual.  

The book also mentions that during campaigning from 1913 to 1948, Mahatma Gandhi walked around 79,000 kilometres. 

The health records also reveal that the Mahatma Gandhi suffered from many serious ailments like contracting malaria three times in 1925, 1936 and 1944. He was operated for piles and appendicitis in 1919 and 1924.  

He also suffered from pleurisy - inflammation of the tissues that line the lungs and chest cavity - when he was in London. His experiments on his own diet are legendary and his act of undertaking long fasts sometimes led to his health condition deteriorating to almost "near death". 

Gandhi ji’s electro-cardiogram (ECG) records of 1937-1940 show normal characteristics with some changes. His record of 1939 says "no evidence of coronary insufficiency" but as cardiologist Dr Balram Bhargava, present director general of the ICMR, writes in the book "the comparative records showed that his ECG was normal in all respects except slight myocarditis which was negligible given Gandhi ji's age. His cardio-vascular degeneration was arrested". 

Mahatma Gandhi's electro-cardiogram (ECG) records of 1937-1940 show normal characteristics with few changes. 

What should be noticed is Mahatma survived and maintained a level of calmness despite the high blood pressure that was 220/110 on February 19, 1940. 

A few months later, Mahatma Gandhi wrote to Dr Sushila Nayyar, who later also became India's health minister, "my blood pressure continues to remain high hence I took three drops of sarpagandha". 

Also, "Gandhi ji used to walk around 18 kilometres every day. During campaigning from 1913 to 1948 he walked around 79,000 kilometres, which is the equivalent to walking around the Earth twice," the book says. 

He disliked medicines and liked to keep modern doctors at bay. He himself practiced nature cure and naturopathy as healing solutions and experimented heavily on his own body using "earth and water" treatments. 

Source: NDTV 

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