The Ayurvedic therapies aim to optimise mental and physical strength, initiate bodily detoxification, balance biological humors (doshas), revitalise bodily tissues (dhatus), purify circulatory channels (srotamsi), enhance digestion and metabolism. They also boost immunity, calm the nervous and respiratory system, stimulate brain activity and harmonise the cardiovascular, endocrinal and lymphatic system.
The Ayurvedic Health Care
In practice, Ayurvedic medicine includes two different concepts of health care. The first one represents the active home care shamana, which focuses on the harmonization of psychosomatic functions, purification of the body and strengthening the immune system. This particular therapy relieves the symptoms and removes the causes of diseases in their initial phase, by establishing balance of the three biologicallife forces (doshas), healthy functioning of the seven bodily tissues (dhatus), regular elimination of toxic waste (ama) and harmonic metabolism or digestive fire (agni).
The Ayurvedic Home Therapy
Ayurvedic shamanais the ideal home therapy for most regular working and employed people who are daily exposed to proportional strain and stress. It consists of seven purification methods which are applied according to the individual needs with help of herbal decoctions (kvatha) and elixirs (avaleha), grounded herbs (churna), tinctures and syrups (asava & aristha), tablets (guti-vati), oils (taila), balms (guggul) and ointments (lepa).
7 purification methods of shamana:
1. Stimulation of digestive fire (deepana)
2. Purification and detoxification (pachana)
3. Fasting (kshuda)
4. Regulation of fluids (trisha)
5. Physical activity, exercise and yoga (vyayama)
6. Heat and sunbath therapy (atapa)
7. Fresh air therapy and breathing exercises (marut)
The second concept of Ayurvedic health care is called sodhana. It represents a stricter purifying and detoxifying process known as Panchakarma, which isorganised under the clinical supervision of a trained Ayurvedic doctor. The main difference between these two concepts lays in the method of treatment of the doshas’ imbalance. Shamana pacifies disturbed doshas back to their natural state of balance, whereas sodhana eliminates the aggravated doshas from the body.
Purification, sodhana, is a special therapy to eliminate disease-causing doshas in case of advanced, long-term and chronic conditions. It is connected mainly with the body’s thorough purification and general detoxification. Such deeper cleansing therapy eliminates aggravated doshas and accumulated toxins from bodily tissues (dhatus) and circulatory channels (srotamsi). Consequently, they remove the germs causing further development of various diseases. This purification method consists of five parts and is called Panchakarma, its five cleansing actions improving physical and mental health.
5 Steps of Panchakarma
1. Vomiting (vamana) decreases kapha dosha in case of chronic diseases of the upper and lower respiratory tract. They include coughs and colds, asthma, rhinitis, flu, bronchitis and phlegm in the stomach.
2. Use of purgatives (virechana) eliminates accumulated pitta dosha in case of stomach acidity, initial phases of stomach and duodenal ulcers, allergies in the digestive tract, jaundice, skin disorders and rashes.
3. Rinsing the intestines (vasthi), which is used to calm vata in case of neurological disorders, paralysation, polio, multiple sclerosis, nerve inflammation, sciatica, back and spine pain, constipation, kidney stones, arthritis or rheumatism.
4. Nasal cleansing (nasya) with herbal oils relieves the nasal and frontal cavities, headache, migraines, eye disorders and ear pain.
5. Blood-letting (raktamoksha) eliminates excessive pitta dosha and is basically meant for blood purification in case of enlarged liver and spleen, skin disorders, rashes, acne and boils.