Ayurveda is the most ancient and traditional system of medicine in India. The Ayurvedic system of medication is based on many centuries of experience in medical practice handed down through generations. Ayurvedic medicine originated in the early civilizations of India some 3,000-5,000 years ago making Ayurvedic medicine the oldest surviving healing system in the world.
The word Ayurveda is formed by the combination of two words - "Ayu" meaning life, and "Veda" meaning knowledge. Ayurveda is regarded as "The Science of Life" and the practice involves the care of physical, mental and spiritual health of human beings.
Life according to Ayurveda is a combination of senses, mind, body and soul. Ayurveda is not only limited to body or physical symptoms but also gives a comprehensive knowledge about spiritual, mental and social health. Thus Ayurveda is a qualitative, holistic science of health and longevity, a philosophy and system of healing the whole person, body and mind. Ayurveda has different therapies for the ailing as well as for preserving the vigour and well being of the healthy. Ayurveda emphasizes on the preventive rather than the curative aspect of therapy and orients itself towards a healthy and enlightened lifestyle.
In Ayurveda every individual is uniquely made up of five elements. These elements are Ether (space), Air, Fire, Water and Earth. They combine to create all physiological functions also called three doshas – Vata, Pitta and Kapha.
Any imbalance among these three can lead to health disorders.
The proportion of Vata, Pitta and Kapha varies from person to person. Ayurveda is thus a customized and holistic mode of treatment. Every individual has a different constitution and thus it designs treatment protocols that specifically address a person’s health challenges. Ayurveda will suggest a specific lifestyle with nutritional guidelines to assist the individual in reducing the doshas that have become excessive.
This age-old medical science of ayurveda is practiced by many people, particularly the people of Kerala. These 'Vaidyasalas' (clinics) have attracted people from all over the world because of the efficacy of their treatments. These facilities are offered in various Ayurvedic Spas located in serene, sylvan surroundings and others located on the beaches. Kerala’s equable climate, natural abundance of forests with a rich wealth of herbs and medicinal plants and cool monsoon seasons are best suited for Ayurveda’s curative and restorative packages. Kerala is the only state in India which practices this system of medicine with absolute dedication. Its equable climate and the cool monsoon provide the ideal setting for this natural healthcare system to flourish.
Treatment of diseases in Ayurveda is broadly of two types, Sodhana (Panchakarma) and Shamana.
Panchakarma is Ayurveda’s primary purification and detoxification treatment. ‘Panch’ means five and ‘Karma’ means steps (cleansing procedures). Following are the five procedures of eliminating toxins from the body:-
This series of five procedures helps to remove deep rooted toxins from the body and balance the doshas.
Shamana means subsidence of disease and symptoms by Kshut (fasting) Trit nigraham(restriction of fluids) Vyayamam (exercise) Atapaseva (sun rays) Maruta seva (breeze of air) etc. and intake of medicines.
The Ayurvedic therapies prescribed are customized to suit the individual's constitution and requirements and there is no general mode of treatment. All the treatments supervised by the physician are carried out by trained staff in hygienic surroundings.
Benefits of Ayurveda
All the therapies in Ayurveda develop general health by removing the offending toxins from the whole body and rejuvenate the whole person in body, mind and soul. Ayurveda help outs to restore and repair worn out tissues, improve blood circulation, stop premature ageing, get rid of toxins from your system and give you flowing, wrinkle-free skin. Remove stress and strain enable one to lead fatigue free life. Just as an axis of wheel is made strong and durable by applying grease around it, the human body becomes strong and lubricated by oil application. Based upon individual body constitution special oils are used which will stimulate the lymphatic system. This assists in the flow of nutrients in body and removes toxins from the cells. It prevents aging and has a rejuvenative effect. The body will be able to endure fatigue and physical exertion. Induces sleep, improves complexion and strength and prolongs life.