What Is Ayurveda?
Ayurveda is a 5,000 year old system of natural healing that’s truly stood the test of time. First originating in the Vedic culture of India, it’s actually considered by many to be the oldest healing science there is which is amazing, considering the fact that Ayurveda is still practiced effectively today.
Ayurveda in translation means “knowledge of life” or the “science of life”. It can help improve both physical, measurable health and the overall quality of life.
Yoga and massage are components of Ayurveda because they accomplish so many of the mental, physical and spiritual parts of feeling good or getting better.
The primary goal of Ayurvedic medicine is to help people live long, healthy and balanced lives without the need for prescription drugs, complicated surgeries or suffering through painful conditions.
Ayurvedic medicine, or Ayurveda, has its roots in the Hindu religion and focuses on both prevention and cures by looking at how well the body is balanced. Using three systems, or doshas — the nervous (Vata), arterial (Kapha) and venous (Pitta).
The Three Doshas
Have you ever wondered why are some people hyperactive and fast moving, while others exude grace and stillness?
Why can some people eat a five course meal with ease, while others can barely finish a salad?
Why are some people inherently joyfull, while others carry the weight of the world on their shoulders?
Modern genetics offers some insight, but what about the characteristics that make every person unique? Ayurveda answers all of these questions with the Three Doshas: Vata, Pitta, and Kapha.
The doshas are biological energies found throughout the human body and mind. They govern all physical and mental processes and provide every living being with an individual blueprint for health and fulfillment.
The doshas derive from the Five Elements and their related properties. Vata is composed of Space and Air, Pitta of Fire and Water, and of Earth and Water.
A person with a predominantly Vata constitution will have physical and mental qualities that reflect the elemental qualities of Space and Air. That is why Vata types are commonly quick thinking, thin, and fast moving.
A Pitta type, on the other hand, will have qualities reflective of Fire and Water, such as a fiery personality and oily skin.
A Kapha type will typically have a solid bodily frame and calm temperament, reflecting the underlying elements of Earth and Water. While one dosha predominates in most individuals, a second dosha typically has a strong influence. This is referred to as a dual-doshic constitution.
Ayurveda is helping to balance the three doshas — not letting one type become overly dominant and another to become ignored.
In order to help re-balance your dosha’s and prescribe a certain diet, healing herbs and restful practices, an Ayurvedic practitioner will take your medical history, check your vital signs like your pulse and reflexes, examine your skin, look inside your mouth at your gums and tongue, and speak to you about your sleep and relationships.
All of these factors help the practitioner first determine of your primary dosha, and then to figure out which aspects of the doshas might be out of balance and what type of treatment you should get.
Ayurvedic Massage Therapy
Ayurvedic massage is a key part of Ayurvedic therapy. Just as a machine needs to be oiled, the body loves to have its largest organ, the skin, soothed, which is why oils are commonly used in Ayurvedic massage.
Oil massage is consistently used throughout Ayurvedic massage treatments. In an ideal world, Ayurvedic massage should be carried out every day to promote positive health, overcome fatigue, strengthen the nervous system, improve eyesight, nourish the bodily tissues, increase longevity, normalise sleep, instil flexibility and sturdiness as well as to maintain good health in general.
An additional benefit of Ayurvedic massage is the potency of the herb-infused oils used. These enhance the process of purification and regeneration. Shows complete entrance in all seven layers of skin in 8-10 minutes and the oils used can be infused with up to 75 different herbs, increasing the therapeutic effect immeasurably.
Benefits of Ayurvedic Medicine
- helps lower stress and anxiety
- lowers blood pressure and cholesterol
- helps with recovery from injuries and illnesses
- promotes a nutrient-dense, antioxidant-rich diet
- can help with weight loss or maintenance
- lowers inflammation
- helps with hormonal balance
- helpful in detox of the body
Ayurveda practice and healing process include meditation, yoga, breathing exercises, herbal treatments, skin brushing, visualization or repeating inspirational mantras. It connects the power of the mind and it’s connection to the body.