What is Ayurveda?
Jan 13th 2021
Ayurveda originated in the Vedic culture of India thousands of years ago. It is one of the world’s oldest holistic healthcare systems, and it remains one of India’s traditional healthcare systems to this day. The word “Ayurveda” comes from the combination of the Sanskrit terms “ayur” (life) and “veda” (knowledge). Being a holistic system, Ayurveda focuses on the interconnectedness of all things, specifically people, their health, and the universe. It strives to restore balance to the mind, body, spirit, and environment. From this, good health follows.
Ayurvedic practitioners believe that there are five fundamental elements in the universe: space, air, fire, water, and earth. In the body, these combine to form three doshas (life forces or energy complexes), which govern the mind and body. These are Vata dosha (air+space), Pitta dosha (fire+water), and Kapha dosha (water+earth), regulating movement, metabolism, and body structure, respectively. Most people inherently have one or two doshas that are more dominant than others.
Imbalance occurs when one or more of these doshas has become altered, and poor health follows. This can be the result of diet, thoughts, actions, emotions, or even environmental factors. Ayurvedic practitioners use various methods, including yoga, meditation, herbs, massage, and others, to restore equilibrium to their doshas and their health. While this form of treatment may sound broad, treatments can be geared towards specific ailments.
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