Ayurveda is an ancient system of holistic medicine, dating back to over 5,000 years ago and originating in India. Its meaning translates to knowledge or science of life. The goal of Ayurveda is to bring balance and health to the entirety of one's being; body, mind and spirit.
Ayurveda teaches that we are a microcosm of a macrocosm; meaning that the elements, which make up the universe (macrocosm), also exist within our bodies (microcosm). These elements, ether, air, fire, water, and earth, reside in each individual in different quantities. The combination of these elements form 3 Doshas: Vata, Pita, and Kapha. Vata consists of ether and air, Pitta contains fire and water, while Kapha is composed of earth and water. An individual's constitution or prakriti is made up of one or more of these three Doshas.
Ayurveda maintains the principle that like increases like. By identifying your constitution and becoming aware of which elements are most present in your body, you can utilize this principle, incorporating diet and lifestyle changes that bring balance. For example, if a person has a primarily Vata constitution, ether and air, incorporating moist foods and grounding activities would help to balance the very mobile and dry qualities of Vata.
Ayurveda promotes harmony in body. mind, and spirit through proper nutrition, lifestyle, and awareness. An Ancient Ayurvedic Proverb proclaims, "If diet is wrong, medicine is of no use. If diet is correct, medicine is of no need." Ayurvedic body treatments, help to facilitate relaxation, detoxify the body, and increase circulation to the muscles, tissues and organs, to aid and actify the body's natural healing processes.
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