Diseases and Cures

  According to Ayurveda the body comprises of three primary life forces or humors. In Ayurvedic terminology they are called doshas. The state of balance or equilibrium between these three doshas in the body is called health and the state of imbalance or disequilibrium is disease. The imbalance may be in one, two or all the three doshas. For example excess of vata causes arthritis and excess of pitta causes acidity, ulcer and liver disorders.

All causative factors of disease internal or external directly or indirectly create an imbalance in these doshas first and only then do the symptoms of the disease manifest. The causative factors can be the food, life style or other activities. All these factors are affecting one , two or all the three doshas.

So if you want to stay healthy, you must know what are these factors which create an imbalance of doshas. As said earlier these factors could be your diet, life style or daily activities. You will soon discover that majority of foods and activities we practise in the modern world are increasing one or more doshas. They are discussed briefly as below.

Diseases and Cures


Factors responsible for increasing vata:

  • Eating too much bitter, astringent and pungent tasted foods like cabbage, cauliflower, broccoli, sprouts, beans, dry fruits, mushrooms and raw foods.
  • Too much traveling by any means of transportation.
  • Staying awake till late night or not sleeping at all.
  • Eating of junk food, frozen foods and food that has been micro-waved.
  • Excessive exposure to high noise level or high sounds.
  • Watching too much television and over exposure to computers or any other kind of electric gadgets from strong waves are emitted.
  • Indulging in too much sexual activities.
  • Excessive imagination, overworking or too much sports.
  • Taking too much medicinal, recreatonal and stimulating drugs.
  • Suppression of natural urges like urination, defecation, sneezing, cough, tears etc..
  • Emotions like fear and grief.

Aggravation of vata weakens the nervous system. Other symptoms caused by excess of vata in the body are joint pains, constipation, dry skin, loss of memory, palpitation, insomnia, stiffness of muscles, weight loss, loss of strength, migraine, vertigo, tremors, grief and fear etc.,
Factors responsible for increasing Pitta

  • Drinking too much tea, coffee, alcohol.
  • Exessive smoking.
  • Eating salty, sour, hot and spicy food, eating too much chillis, tomatos, egg plant or onions.
  • Too much exposure to heat and sun.
  • Anger.

Some of the symptoms caused by excess of Pitta in the body are hyperacidity , skin diseases, burning sensation, fever, infections, ulcers, liver disorders, malfunction of sense organs, fatigue, loss of taste and sleep disturbances.

Factors responsible for increasing Kapha

  • Eating sweet, salty and sour tastes in excess, fats, oily and fried foods , ice creams, mears, dairy products, and nuts.
  • Too much sleep, specially during day time.
  • Not doing much physical activity.

Some of the symptoms caused by excess Kapha in the body are asthma, cold, congestion in the chest, anorexia and obesity.

Thus we can relate every aspect of our life with these three doshas. If we have proper knowledge, we can maintain a balance of these three doshas and avoid many serious problems and can thus stay healthy. The treatment according to Ayurveda is to balance the tridosha. While making a diagnosis the Ayurvedic physician finds out which dosha is out of balance and tries to make the balance by prescribing some natural medicines, diet and life style.

  The basic principles of Ayurvedic Treatment

The essence of treatment is the removal of the cause and avoidance of causative factors.Ayurvedic treatment does not mean suppressing the main symptoms and creating some new ones as side effects of the main treatment. It is to remove the root cause and give permanent relief. The medicines for the treatment mainly comprises of powders, tablets, decoctions, medicated oils etc. prepared from natural herbs, plants and minerals. Because the medicines are from natural sources and not synthetic, they are accepted and assimilated in the body without creating any side effects and on the other hand, there may be some side benefits.

The famous ayurvedic physician Charaka identifies four factors that are essential for successful medical treatment : The Physician, the remedy , the nurse and the patient.The physician should be an expert in theory and in practice, skilful, and pure in body and mind.Easy availability, appropriateness, utility in a variety of forms and high quality characterize the optimal remedy. The best nurse is knowledgeable , skilful , sympathetic and pure.The ideal patient is courageous, able to describe what he or she is feeling , and remembers all the physician's instructions and follows them carefully; all these qualities help the patient get well more easily.

Along with medicine, proper diet and living style is also advised. This is equally important. If we are taking a medicine to remove the root cause and at the same time we are taking some food or following a life style which is increasing the cause of disease, then we may not get well or will be getting less relief. Panch Karma therapy is also used as a treatment in many diseases.

Most of us have many levels of toxins accumulated over a lifetime of indiscretions, all of which cannot be released at once otherwise they will overhelm the excretory organs and ravage the mind.Your mind and body have become habituated to these poisons, which have become part of your equilibrium equation . Removing them all at once would seriously imbalance your physical body and confuse your mind so that you no longer felt like 'yourself' .Purifying the system is a long, slow process, requiring many cycles to expunge the many layers of dirt.You must be patient with the process and with the newly developing you, just as you would be patient with a slowly growing tree.
When you backslide and return temporarily to your old unhealthy ways , you must learn to always pick yourself up, like a child learning to walk , and begin again.

The basic principles of Ayurvedic treatment are immutable : how they are applied differs from case to case.
"Treatment is rooted in measure" : the effect of any particular therapy on any particular patient depends on its dosage, which again depends upon the climate, the doshas involved , the strength of the patient versus the strength of the disease, the patients age and constitution , the specific syndrome, the patients social environment , the goal of treatment and so on. Time cycled, including 'disease time' and the joints of seasons, are especially important , because the doshas are controlled differently at different times, depending upon both external time and the disease's momentum within the microcosm.
Treatment is totally individualized, and so different diseases may sometimes share a single therapy, while a single disease may be treated differently in different patients according to the measure of the facors involved.
Thus we find that the methods of treatment are based on simple and natural principles. To conclude we can say that, Ayurveda teaches a very systematic and scientific way of life which is important to pursue both materially and spiritually. Fundamental principles, health rules, knowledge of individual constitution of our body, use of various herbs, minerals and specially Panch Karma therapy can be very safely used by one and all, all over the world to, promote good health, prevent diseases and acquire longevity.



The roots of Ayurveda                   Principles of Ayurveda

Diseases and Cures           Health Promotion and Preventive Care           The Purification Therapies

Philosophy & Yoga        Ageing and Rejuvenation            Women and Child Care


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