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What is Ayurveda’s Definition of Health?
The ancient Ayurvedic text ‘Susruta Samhita’ defines health as follows:
“Samadoshaha samagnischa samadhatumalakriya
Prasannatmendriyamanaha swastha ityabhidheeyate”
– Susruta Samhita
This can be translated as a healthy person is one in whom:
The Doshas are in balance,
The Agnis (digestive and metabolic fire) are in balance,
The tissues are in a normal and nourished state,
The elimination of waste is normal,
The sensory organs, the motor organs, mind and soul (Atma) are in a pleasant state”
Most ailments first come from the mind:
- Health is an optimal state of harmonious body functioning. It represents the balance between three biological principles (vata, pitta, Kapha) according to the original condition (vikrti), bodily tissues and their functions, sensory organs, the mind, and psychic consciousness.
- The mind usually insists on its fulfillment, despite damage to the physical body, and as such often abuses the body to achieve its desires.
- Therefore most ailments first come from the mind before they manifest on the physical plane.
- A symptom is regarded only as a signal or warning that there is something wrong with the body and that a deeper level of correction is needed.
- Thus, by healthy lifestyle principles, Ayurveda tries to restore the natural state of harmony in the human body, which manifests itself as mental and physical health.
Alterations in the diet and lifestyle to achieve a healthy balance:
- Program of positive change,
- Including proper diet, and
- Regular herb usage
it is possible to treat various health problems and long-lasting illnesses such as
- Skin diseases,
- Respiratory problems,
- Digestive disorders,
- Blood circulation problems, and
- Gynecological difficulties.
Other ailments such as the spine, joints, and muscle illnesses, insomnia, fatigue, and stress, can also be treated.
More complex techniques include Panchakarma (which is a full-body cleansing), ingesting herbal preparations, or even using surgical methods to help rid different disorders.
Importance of Ayurvedic herbs:
Right from ancient times, Ayurvedic herbs offered a solution to all kinds of disorders, some of which were considered difficult to treat by other fields of medical sciences.
They are derived from a plant source, where the leaves, flowers, fruits, seeds, roots, bark, and resin are used to prepare medicines.
These herbal medicines have the potential to maintain a balance between the mind and the spirit.
Some of the healthiest ayurvedic herbs and spices and their health benefits.
Turmeric – Turmeric contains Curcumin, a Substance With Powerful Anti-Inflammatory Effects
Ginger – Ginger Can help with Nausea and Has Anti-Inflammatory Properties
Cumin – Cumin is great for digestion.
Peppermint – Peppermint Relieves IBS Pain and May Reduce Nausea
Aloe Vera -Apart from its external use on the skin, aloe vera is also taken internally in the treatment of ulcerative colitis (drinking aloe vera juice), chronic constipation, poor appetite, digestive problems
Gotu Kola – The Gotu kola acts on various phases of connective tissue development and stimulates healing of ulcers, skin injuries
Fenugreek – Fenugreek Improves Blood Sugar Control. Methi or Fenugreek seeds are nourishing and taken to encourage weight gain, inhibit cancer of the liver, lower blood cholesterol levels
Ashwagandha – Ashwagandha is best known for stress reduction, neural protection, and in addition to promoting fertility, aiding in wound care, and boosting the immune system,
Garlic: Can Combat Sickness and Improve Heart Health
Echinacea – One of the world’s most important medicinal herbs, the echinacea has the capacity to raise the body’s resistance to bacterial and viral infections by stimulating the immune system.
Cinnamon – Cinnamon Lowers Blood Sugar Levels and Has a Powerful Anti-Diabetic Effect
Haridra – This herb contains beneficial inflammation-relieving properties. It boosts cell health through its anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties, further helping improve overall health.
Guduchi – Guduchi helps support the immune system and also helps combat infections by increasing the effectiveness of disease-fighting white blood cells.
Amalaki – Amalaki is rejuvenating, high in vitamin C, and has some major antioxidant powers. “Amla balances all our doshas, nourishes our physiology, boosts immunity, and promotes longevity,”
Cardamom – Cardamom can help remove excess Kapha, one of the Ayurvedic doshas from the system.
Brahmi – Brahmi is a traditional, therapeutic herb commonly used in Ayurvedic medicine as a memory enhancer, aphrodisiac, and general tonic. It can also improve cognitive performance.
Arjuna -“The bark from the Arjuna tree has been used for thousands of years, primarily to support cardiovascular health.
Shatavari – It’s traditionally been used to help with female reproductive health.
Coriander – Drinking coriander juice is known to help with weight loss. It helps in boosting your metabolism and thereby, burning more calories that plays a crucial role in weight loss.
Triphala -Triphala has been traditionally used as a digestive remedy. “This combination helps balance our fire element—our Pitta dosha—cleans and rejuvenates our tissues, helps rejuvenate the liver, [acts as] a very mild laxative to help things move along, and actually strengthens the digestive system.
Guggul – Another Ayurvedic herb, guggul is derived from the flowering Mukul myrrh tree. It helps in the utilization of fat as fuel to provide energy.
Chyavanprash – It is a five-thousand-year-old recipe that helps to promote strength, immunity, and longevity. With the power of more than fifty herbs, the five-thousand-year-old original recipes of this immunity booster
As per Ayurveda, the Doshas should be at their optimum levels to ensure smooth bodily functioning, and digestion should be a smooth and complete process. It is important to eat the right foods and make adequate lifestyle changes. If you consistently eat an unhealthy diet, drink a lot of alcohol and smoke, don’t get sufficient sleep or sleep at odd hours, and are under a lot of stress, your immunity will start to get negatively affected. Fortunately, Ayurvedic immunity-boosting foods and supplements are available to improve immunity and bring your body back to its natural state.