A physician who fails to enter the body of a patient with the lamp of knowledge and understanding can never treat diseases. He should first study all the factors, including environment, which influence a patient’s disease, and then prescribe treatment. It is more important to prevent the occurrence of disease than to seek a cure – Charaka
Charaka is known as the Indian Father of Medicine. It is through Charaka that we have the written record of Ayurveda. Ayurveda, which translates from Sanskrit as the science of life, is holistic medicine from India that originated over 5000 years ago. It focuses on each individual’s unique mind-body constitution, from which an individual healing protocol is derived. This protocol addresses diet, lifestyle, and exercise to balance the body and bring it back to health.
Everyone has a unique prakriti, or dominate doshas. Doshas are vata, pitta, and kapha, and reflect that 5 elements: air, fire, water, earth, and ether. In Ayurveda it is stated that “as is the macrocosm, so is the microcosm”. Therefore the relationship between humans and the universe is intrinsic and cannot be separated.
Ayurveda recommends keeping a body and mind healthy by practicing a daily routine, as well as a seasonal routine. The daily routine, known as dinacharya in Sanskrit, encourage waking up between 5 and 6am. This is vata time, which is full of energy, creativity, and productivity. Next, clean your teeth and tongue upon waking, as well as after each meal. Tongues release toxins similar to the skin and require scraping to remove harmful bacteria. A healthy tongue is smooth and pink in color. Afterwards, wash your face, eyes, and body with warm water. Finally, massage your head and body with warm oil – this oil should be left on to absorb through the pores throughout the day. The body, like any machine, needs to be lubricated from the outside and inside in order to run well. Lastly is exercise, this should be done in some form based on dosha everyday, and a short walk is recommended after each meal to aid digestion.
Ayurveda is an excellent way of supporting the body through cold and flu season with warming herbs that reduce mucous and heat from fevers, as well as reduce inflammation and pain throughout the body. Ayurvedic herbs actually assist the body to naturally heal itself by supporting bodily functions, enhancing the removal of toxins, and by nourishing the body.
Traditional ayurvedic therapies can treat everything from sore throats to arthritis to migraines to anxiety. Most people are familiar with how their body works and can detect subtleties when they arise. Often in allopathic medicine these small shifts go undetected or unacknowledged until large issues develop. This is a perfect example as to when an ayurvedic ractitioner can rebalance an illness before a larger problem emerges. It is also worth noting that prescription medications take over for the body rather than encourage the body to heal itself, and certain pharmaceuticals can lead to a lifetime commitment that could potentially include adverse side effects. It’s always encouraged to see an ayurvedic practitioner to evaluate diet, lifestyle, and potential therapies to treat conditions rather than defaulting to allopathic medicine automatically. Knowledge is power and viewing health from multiple perspectives doesn’t have a downside.
If you are interested in a consultation with Brownsville’s premiere ayurvedic practitioner, please contact LA Ayurveda at 310-614-3669. Therapies range from $85 to $45 and can be viewed at www.laayurveda.com.