Vivekananda suffered from 31 ailments
In a life-span of only 39 years, Swami Vivekananda,
who spread the message of India's spiritual heritage across
the world, battled several health problems all along and no
less than 31 diseases and ailments.
Monk as Man' by renowned Bengali writer Shankar lists
insomnia, liver and kidney diseases, malaria, migraine, diabetes
and heart ailments as some of the 31 health problems that
the Swami faced in the course of his life.
describes Swami Vivekananda's health problems using a sanskrit
quote 'shariram byadhimandiram' - the body is the temple of
Vivekananda used to emphasise greatly on physical strength
and is known for the shocking statement 'Better to play football
than read the Gita'.
of the perennial problems that Vivekananda lived with was
chronic insomnia and in a letter to Shashi Bhushan Ghosh dated
May 29, 1897, he confided "I never in my life could sleep
as soon as I got into bed."
previous year, Vivekananda seemed to have written to his 'dhira
mata' (Sara Bull) from New York complaining about his lack
of sleep. "My health has nearly broken down. I have not
slept even one night soundly in New York since I came ...
I wish I could go to the bottom of the sea and have a good,
is also known that Vivekananda used to suffer from diabetes
like his father and at that time suitable drugs were unavailable.
writes that Vivekananda had tried different modes of treatment
ranging from allopathic, homoeopathic to ayurvedic and had
also taken advice from all kinds of quasi-medical experts
from various countries.
He narrates that in the summer of 1887, Vivekananda (whose
real name was Narendranath Dutta) had fallen very ill due
to overstrain and lack of food.
this period, he also suffered from gallstones, and acute diarrhoea.
Later, during the same summer, he came down with typhoid and
problems in the urinary tract.
abdominal pains were a source of great anxiety," Shankar
wonderfully chronicles the various medical problems Swami
Vivekananda faced during his stint as a wandering monk in
the country and across the world, and why he cut short his
journey in Cairo, Egypt, to return to India.
was to French operatic soprano Rosa Emma Calvet that Vivekandanda
had declared in Egypt that he would die on July 4.
Vivekananda's eyes filled with tears. He said he wanted to
return to his country to die, to be with his gurubhais,"
fateful evening of July 4, 1902, Vivekananda passed away following
a third heart attack, completing 39 years, five months and