|Ayurveda is a holistic healing science which comprises of two words, Ayu and Veda. Ayu means life and Veda means knowledge or science. So the literal meaning of the word Ayurveda is the science of life. Ayurveda is a science dealing not only with treatment of some diseases but is a complete way of life. Ayurveda is an Ancient Holistic medicine practiced 5000 years ago in India.
"Ayurveda treats not just the ailment but the whole person and emphasizes prevention of disease to avoid the need for cure."
Ayurvedic Medicine has become an increasingly accepted alternative medical treatment in America during the last two decades.
Benefits of Ayurvedic Medicines
• By using ayurvedic and herbal medicines you ensure physical and mental health without side effects. The natural ingredients of herbs help bring “arogya” to human body and mind. ("Arogya" means free from diseases). The chemicals used in preparing allopathy medicines have impact on mind as well. One should have allopathy medicine only when it is very necessary.
• According to the original texts, the goal of Ayurveda is prevention as well as promotion of the body’s own capacity for maintenance and balance.
• Ayurvedic treatment is non-invasive and non-toxic, so it can be used safely as an alternative therapy or alongside conventional therapies.
• Ayurvedic physicians claim that their methods can also help stress-related, metabolic, and chronic conditions.
• Ayurveda has been used to treat acne, allergies, asthma, anxiety, arthritis, chronic fatigue syndrome, colds, colitis, constipation, depression, diabetes, flu, heart disease, hypertension, immune problems, inflammation, insomnia, nervous disorders, obesity, skin problems, and ulcers.
Ayurvedic Terms Explained
Dosha: In Ayurvedic philosophy, the five elements combine in pairs to form three dynamic forces or interactions called doshas. It is also known as the governing principles as every living things in nature is characterized by the dosha.
Ayurvedic Facial: Purportedly, a "therapeutic skin care experience" that involves the use of "dosha-specific" products and a facial massage focusing on "marma points."
Ayurvedic Medicine is based on the concept of the three doshas - Tridosha. Dosha commonly means 'force' or 'fault, something which can easily go out of balance, leading to a disorder in the body or mind.
The concept of dosha is not unlike the traditional Western idea of three basic body types - ectomorph (lean and delicate), mesomorph (compact and muscular) and endomorph (stocky). Most of us are a combination of two or three types. The Ayurvedic tridosha are known as Vata (the lightest, portrayed by the colour blue), Pitta (medium, red) and Kapha (heaviest, yellow). Somebody with dominant Vata energy tends to be thin, restless and creative; the Pitta mostly conforms to a happy medium; Kapha people tend to be heavy, slow and lethargic.
Ayurveda teaches that everything in the world is made up of a combination of the three doshas, and that the doshas themselves combine two of the five elements; Vata is Ether and Air; Pitta is Fire and Water; Kapha is Water and Earth.
A recent addition to Western medicine is psychoneuroimmunity (or PNI). This studies the effects of stress on the immune system and reflects a fact which has always been known to Ayurveda - anything that affects the mind also affects the body and that a compromised immune system is primarily the result of mental imbalance and negativism. Disease attacks when the Tridosha are disturbed.
To strengthen immunity, it is first necessary to improve the spirit. Someone who is depressed, lethargic, angry, unhappy and at a low emotional ebb is vulnerable to attack by pathogens, leaving the system open to invasion by illness and disease.
Ayurveda recommends healthy living, healthy eating, counseling, meditation, yoga, massage, group therapy and natural remedies to help the body and mind find balance.
This means: three governing principles, which govern the entire physiology and psychology of every living being. They are called Vata, Pitta and Kapha.
Vata is made up of Space and Air: governs all the movements and thoughts.
Pitta is made up of Fire and Water: governs all the metabolic activities and synthesis and assimilation of thoughts.
Kapha is made up of Watr and Earth.: governs all the adhesion, lubrication and emotions.
Human body is made up of seven vital tissues called Dhatus. Dhatu in Samskrit means “that, which binds together”. These are:
life sap or equivalent to plasma or lymphatic fluid (rasa), blood (rakta), muscles (mamsa), fatty tissue (medha), bones (asthi), bone marrow and nervous tissue (majja) and semen and reproductive system (shukra).
Each of these Dhatus, gets converted from one to the other starting from the first Dhatu, Rasa. The conversion process takes place through the action of a particular Dhatu Agni (fire) Agni in this context means the metabolic activity supported by a particular hormone or amino acid and the metabolic sequence for this conversion is very specific and happens in a very orderly manner. Proper Agni is very important for this process and to be healthy.
Panchakarmas are the most beautiful way of removing both physical and mental toxins. Toxins enter and accumulate in our body and mind in many different ways and in different parts of the body. A thorough examination by a Vaidya through pulse diagnosis and other methods will identify the various toxins lodged in different parts of the body, both physical and mental. The entrances, path treaded by the toxins and where they are lodged are clearly identified by the Vaidya. Once this is complete an individualized Panchakarma treatment is administered. The medications administered follow the same path the toxins have entered and lodged in the body and mind. They go and bind to these toxins and later are removed delicately through the same path they have entered and treaded. Once the treatment is complete the person feels very fresh and renewed. After the Panchakarmas Rasayanas are given, which could be in the form of different herbal preparations or therapies in an Ayurveda Centre. Having gotten cleansed first these rejuvenative procedures work very effectively and make the person, feel healthier and younger looking.
The Panchakarma and Rejuvenation procedures have withstood the test of time for more than five millennia. Only recently there has been a growing, renewed interest in this and people from all over the world are recognising the benefit. Modern medical community too is raising its eyebrows as well.
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