“When diet is wrong, medicine is of no use. When diet is correct, medicine is of no need.” ―Ayurvedic proverb
There's Nothing New Under the Sun
How do you define something that’s all-encompassing, holistic, and addresses the most fundamental question regarding the individual self at the physical, emotional and spiritual level? This is why defining Ayurveda as just a healing system of medicine greatly restricts and limits its bounty of wisdom. The fundamental essence of Ayurveda is, that it prescribes a way of life that goes beyond merely prescribing remedies for ailments. Instead, it distills the essence of our biological, psychological, emotional and spiritual being and accordingly arrives at a way of life that helps us understand and realize our innate healing capability and unique constitution. This time tested, grand science was a path carved out by the great yogis of the Himalayas and sage-physicians thousands of years ago, which is the oldest and the most comprehensive system of knowledge still practiced today.
The ancient science of Ayurveda originates from India and has been practiced for more than 7000 years. Ayurveda has been translated as "the science of life" in Sanskrit. This grand and all encompassing science provides the tools to view each individual as a unique entity or as having his or her special characteristics. According to Ayurveda, every individual is unique, Therefore, one's diet, lifestyle, medicinal and therapeutic treatments should be geared toward one's unique constitution. The aim of Ayurveda is to promote a healthy, happy, and fulfilling life.
The system of Ayurveda embodies the mind, body and spirit, which all three aspects are considered when administering treatments or implementing any diet or lifestyle practices. Much like Yoga, it's sister science, Ayurveda is gaining popularity in the west as not only a recognized and effective system of medicine, but a way of living that has something to offer for all avenues of life
Ayurveda proposes many different types of treatments, diet and lifestyle practices, along with an intricate system of herbal remedies that work to attain optimal health and maintain balance. The basic principle behind certain treatments or lifestyle practices is to balance what are called "doshas" or bodily humors. The doshas are the elements that makeup our being and form our "prakriti" or constitution. The three doshas are Vata, Pitta, and Kapha. They are in different proportions in each individual, however one is usually predominant. When the doshas become unbalanced, overtime disease eventually manifests. For optimal health, balancing the doshas is the key to wellbeing according to Ayurveda.
How it Works
Our bodies, in essence, are made up of the five elements of the universe, earth, water, fire, air and ether. Everyone has their unique set of elements that are in different proportions. This is one of the primary factors that sets us apart from one another. Since everybody is unique, substances we intake, whether it be food, medicines, chemicals etc.., are assimilated and digested differently depending on an individual's unique constitution. As the saying goes, "one man's poison is another man's medicine." Therefore Ayurveda proposes that since every person is unique and has his or her own special characteristics, a person diet, lifestyle and medicinal treatments or therapies should be tailored to meet an individuals needs.
Ayurvedic Practitioner Ithaca