Ayurveda, the traditional healing methodology, has emerged as a holistic healing system over the years. The practices followed in Ayurveda are popular globally. Modernized healing solutions coupled with the traditional practices of Ayurveda play a significant role in maintaining a delicate balance between body, mind and spirit.
Let’s explore what is Ayurveda, its history and its benefits through this article.
Ayurveda and its history:
Originated almost 5000 years ago in India, the word Ayurveda id derived from two Sanskrit words: Ayur (life) and Veda (knowledge). Ayurveda is one of the oldest medical systems prevalent for mankind. Ayurveda is also known as the “Knowledge of life”. According to legends, the Ayurvedic system has derived from spiritual sightings by Indian Rishis during the period of Vedas.
Today, Ayurveda is considered as a powerful tool to cure diseases by means of natural and organic herbs, roots and plants.
Introduction to Doshas:
There are three basic types of energy in Ayurveda, namely Vata, Pitta, and Kapha, which are known as Doshas. They are considered as the building blocks of the material world. Each of us have a different proportion of doshas in our systems. The varying ratios of doshas have a significant influence on every individual’s physical, mental, and emotional characteristics.
Vata Dosha id composed of the space and air elements. In other words, it is responsible for all types of movements like the flow of breath, muscle contractions, movement of body parts, tissue movements etc.
Pitta Dosha is composed of the fire and water elements. It is related to governing various functions in the body like nutrition and metabolism, intelligence, understanding and digestion.
Kapha Dosha is composed of the earth and water elements. It is primarily responsible for hydrating all cells and systems, moisturizing the skin, maintaining immunity and protecting the tissues.
When the doshas become out of balance, they can create some serious trouble for our health. Poor diet, stress, unusual lifestyle or emotional trauma can be a major cause of dosha imbalance. Due to imbalances, there could be an increase in one or more of doshas which disturbs the natural state of internal equilibrium in our constitution.
Ayurveda for healing ailments:
Ayurveda uses a complete approach to cure and cleanse mind, body and spirit. There are four main procedures:
- Spiritual and Psychological healing
Ayurvedic treatments involve massages, therapies, herbal medicines, proper diet and exercise. According to experts, the benefits of Ayurveda are powerful and natural and are widely popular amongst people globally.
Some of the most important healing Ayurvedic treatments include:
- Purvakarma is a pre-purification step before the Panchakarma process.It includes a combination of Snehanam (oleation) and Swedhanam (fomentation) for flushing out the toxins from the body.
- Panchakarma involves various treatments to purify the mind and detoxify the entire system. The five parts of Panchakarma are Vamana, Virechana, Vasti, Raktamokshana and Nasya.
- Dhara is an ayurvedic treatment in which warm oil is poured on the body for calming the nervous system and mind.
Can Ayurveda replace medicines?
According to various studies and experiments, it has been proved that Ayurveda has been beneficial for some people. It can be considered as a complementary therapy. A study conducted in 2006 on patients suffering from rheumatism revealed that ayurvedic treatments could relieve the pain temporarily and it cannot be considered as a permanent cure. Similarly in 2016, a study showed that ayurvedic oil-dripping therapy could be effective for patients suffering for insomnia.
The Ayurvedic diet:
A typical meal, according to Ayurveda, must include a combination of all flavours like sweet, sour, salty, bitter, astringent, and pungent. An Ayurvedic diet is tailored according to the doshas in one’s body. Such a diet helps to maintain an ideal balance of energy or doshas in your body. A balanced Ayurvedic diet benefits our body and is responsible for our mental and emotional wellbeing.
In recent times, Ayurveda and its practices are firmly gaining ground all over the world. Health conscious people around the globe are slowly resorting to Indian system of medication.