I have long been intrigued by Ayurveda and ancient Indian herbalist practices. My introduction to Ayurveda is actually one of the (many) reasons I chose to develop my own skincare; I just didn’t feel Western culture used enough of these practices in our own holistic health.
The main practice of Ayurveda is the balance between mind, body, and spirit. It is the belief that if all three are in balance, you will be healthy. It suggests that total wellness is a derivative of all aspects of the whole self, meaning that the root of medical ailments is not always solely physical. Another important aspect of Ayurveda is understanding the harmony in the universe; the belief that the whole universe, alive or dead, is all interconnected.
The Three Doshas of Ayurveda
In Ayurveda, it is understood that all humans are divided into five elements of the universe: space, air, fire, water, and earth.
As explained by WebMD: “These combine in the human body to form three life forces or energies, called doshas. They control how your body works. They are Vata dosha (space and air); Pitta dosha (fire and water); and Kapha dosha (water and earth).
Everyone inherits a unique mix of the three doshas. But one is usually stronger than the others. Each one controls a different body function. It’s believed that your chances of getting sick — and the health issues you develop — are linked to the balance of your doshas.”
Imbalance occurs when we have accrued too much of one specific dosha. Too much Vata dosha, which is the control of the basic body function, can lead to anxiety, heart disease, skin problem, arthritis. Too much Pita dosha are more likely to develop metabolic and gastrointestinal issues, high blood pressure, and infections. Too much Kapha dosha is usually shown through obesity, cancer, diabetes, nausea, as it is related to the main body system.
To achieve balance, Ayurvedic practices would teach us to follow these steps for a healthy, balanced life: