Although Ayurveda originated in India, it has taken the West to discover its merits and bring this precious gem back to us. In the pre-Internet era, not many of us could gain access to Ayurvedic treatment because the centres of healing were, with the exception of Kerala, few and far between.
It was also not easy to get information about where to go for a good quality of ayurvedic treatment. The situation has changed vastly, and we can have easy access to this alternative therapy.
The Ayurvedic system of healing is based on an individual’s physical, mental and emotional makeup which generate the vata, pitta and kaphadoshas.The doshas are derived from the five elements and their respective properties. Vata is derived from air & space; pitta from fire & water; kapha from earth and water. The doshas are dynamic energies that constantly change in response to our actions, thoughts, emotions, the foods we eat, the seasons, and other inputs to mind and body. When our lifestyle and habits are in sync with our individual nature, we are actually fostering a balance within our doshas. Conversely, when we live in a way that goes against our intrinsic natures, we end up with a disturbed state of physical and mental balances.
Essentially, ill health occurs as a result of the doshas being rendered in a state of imbalance, and the prescribed ayurvedic treatment works towards restoring the balance between the doshas in the system.
Some of the basic principles of this traditional medical system are founded on simple common sense. For instance, one can immediately appreciate the premise that the skin is the best indicator of the state of our health. So a person with a glowing skin is highly likely to be in the pink of health.
Some of the underlying assumptions in the science of Ayurveda are:
1. The food we consume makes all the difference to our overall health
2. One’s daily habits can help prevent disease
3. Readjustment of lifestyle can help restore the imbalance in the doshas
There are some simple ways to get back into health through the Ayurveda route. Whether you’re young or old, a simple detox routine that removes digestive toxins, can be had at home. A decoction made by boiling½ teaspoon each of whole cumin seeds, coriander seeds and fennel in about 5 cups of water can indeed work wonders. Have small sips of the tea throughout the day to rid your system of the accumulated toxins and the result will be a radiant skin.
For those of us who suffer from colds, sinusitis and sleep deprivation, Nasya is a good remedy. It’s a simple procedure that involves the administration of oil through the nostril. Either sesame oil or ghee can be used. Apply a small amount of the oil in the nostrils and then breathe in while intermittently pinching the nose so that the oil rises into the nasal passages. The best time for doing nasya is early in the morning or an hour before bed time. The practice of Nasya helps eliminate the toxins from the head resulting in greater clarity of the mind, reduced stress, and prevention of wrinkles in the face. It is regularly used in ayurveda to treat stress, headaches, anxiety, disorders, sinusitis, colds, allergies and depression. Regaining a youthful complexion is a bonus arising out of this.