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AYURVEDA CONCEPTS Diseases Ayurveda Basics Dhatu Doshas Mala AHAR VIHAR Chyavanaprasha Ayurvedic Rasayanas Pippali Rasayana Rasayana Therapy Triphala Rasayana ASHTANG AYURVEDA Agada Tantra Kaumara Bhritya Graha Chikitsa Rasayana Chikitsa Kayachikitsa Shalakya Tantra Shalya Chikitsa Vrishya Chikitsa PANCHAKARMA TREATMENT Purification Therapy Basti Karma Nasya Karma Raktamoksha Therapy Vamana Therapy Virechana Therapy PRASUTI TANTRA Fetal Development Menopause Post Partum Disorders Garbhini Vyakaran PRAKRUTI & VIKRUTI Prakruti Sharirik Doshas Vikruti Ayurveda Basics

NIDAN Ayurveda Pareeksha Pratyaksha Darshana Anumana Sparshana PERSONAL HYGIENE Public Svasthavrtta Ritucharya Ayurvedic Diet Science of Ayurveda Tripods

AYURVEDIC HERBOLOGY Effects of Ayurvedic Herbs Types of Ayurvedic Herbs Significance of Ayurvedic Herbs Properties of Ayurvedic Herbs

KAUMARBHRUTYA Child Care Importance of Breast Milk Child Diet Dhatri Baby Teething

PRINCIPLES OF AYURVEDA Bhaijasya Kalpana Ayurvedic Prakruti Rasa Shastra Shalakya Tantra

DINCHARYA Ancient Daily Regime Modern Dincharya

Ayurveda is a vast medicinal science. It is said to have been originated in India about 5000 years back. Unlike other medicinal systems, Ayurveda focuses more on healthy living than treatment of diseases. The main concept of Ayurveda is that it personalizes the healing process. According to Ayurveda, the human body is composed of four basics-the dosha, dhatu, mala and agni. There is immense significance of all these basics of the body in Ayurveda. These are also called the Mool Siddhant or the basic fundamentals of Ayurvedic treatment. Basic Concepts Of Ayurveda i. Dosha : The three vital principles of doshas are vata, pitta and kapha, which together regulate and control the catabolic and anabolic metabolism. The main function of the three doshas is to carry the byproduct of digested foods throughout the body, which helps in building up the body tissues. Any malfunction in these doshas causes disease. ii. Dhatu : Dhatu can be defined, as one, which supports the body. There are seven tissue systems in the body. They are as Rasa, Rakta, Mamsa, Meda, Asthi, Mjja and Shukra which represent the plama, blood, muscle, fat tissue, bone, bone marrow and semen respectively. Dhatus only provide the basic nutrition to the body. And it helps in the growth and structure of mind. iii. Mala : Mala means waste products or dirty. It is third in the trinity of the body i.e. doshas and dhatu. There are three main types of malas, e.g. stool, urine and sweat. Malas are mainly the waste products of the body so their proper excretion from the body is essential to maintain the proper health of the individual. There are mainly two aspect of mala i.e. mala and kitta. Mala is about waste products of the body whereas kitta is all about the waste products of dhatus. iv. Agni : All kinds of metabolic and digestive activity of the body takes place with the help of the biological fire of the body called Agni. Agni can be termed as the various enzymes present in the elementary canal, liver and the tissue cells.

Disease is defined as the state of mind wherein a person experiences discomfort, pain and injury. Fundamentally, a disease is caused by the imbalance of the three doshas - Vata, Pitta and Kapha. However, the diseases are also categorized into those that can be cured and the one that cannot be cured by Ayurvedic treatment. Moreover, the texts of Ayurveda suggest that diseases are also classified according to the underlying cause - whether it is psychological, physiological or an external factor. In this article, we have briefly discussed the various types of diseases, as suggested by Ayurveda. Types Of Ayurveda Diseases i. Samanyaj Vyadhi: Samanyaj vyadhi arises when there is an imbalance of one or all the Doshas. It is caused due to disequilibrium of any one, two or three Doshas. For instance, Anemia can be caused due to the disequilibrium of either of Vata, Pitta or Kapha Dosha or all of them. ii. Nanatmaj: This disease is caused due to disequilibrium of one particular Dosha. Some of the most common nanatmaj vyadhis are grudhrasi (sciatica), Kamala (jaundice), Medorog (obesity), each being caused due to the vitiation of Vata, Pitta, Kapha Doshas, respectively. iii. Agantuj: Agantuj vyadhi occurs, when the patient suffers from a disease that is cause due to the

entrance of a foreign body, into the system. iv. Nijroga: A person suffers from nijroga vyadhi, when all the three Doshas become imbalanced. v. Manas: A person tends to suffers manas vyadhi, when the Doshas interfere with the functioning of his/her nervous system. vi. Sadhya: Diseases that can be cured are often referred to as sadhya, in ayurveda. Sadhya is further divided into following two categories - Sukhasadhya and Kruchchhasadhya. Sukhasadhya refers to diseases, which are easily curable within a short span of time. On the other hand, Kruchchhasadhya are those diseases, which are curable with difficulty. vii. Asadhya: Asadhya, as the name suggests, is exactly opposite to sadhya. A disease is referred to as asadhya in Ayurveda, if it is incurable. Asadhya is further divided into two categories - Yapya and Anukarma. In yapya, the treatments or remedies applied afford relief to the patient, but within a short span, relapse again. Such type of disease can be controlled only at the time of medication. On the other hand, Anukarma is irredeemable, that is, remedies applied to it, in no way, give relief to the patient. viii. Aadi- Bala Pravritta: Genetically predisposed diseases are often referred to as Aasi-bala pravritta, in Ayurveda. ix. Janma- Bala: The congenital diseases are known as janma-bala in Ayurveda. x. Sanghata-bala: If the disease is traumatic, then it is referred to as sanghata-bala in Ayurveda. xi. Kala - Bala: The seasonal or time linked diseases are referred to as kala-bala in Ayurveda. xii. Daiva -Bala: It is a popular belief that people also suffer from the possession of demons or Gods. Such diseases also find place in Ayurveda. They are known as daiva-bala. xiii. Svabhava -Bala: Certain diseases occur due to the natural changes in the body of the person. If a patient incurs such a problem, then he/she would be suffering from a disease, known as svabhava- bala in Ayurveda. xiv. Nija: In the texts of Ayurveda, the endogenous diseases caused due to disorder in Doshas are referred to as nija. xv. Agantuja: Injuries may be the prime reasons for the occurrence of diseases. Such diseases, caused by external reasons (injuries in this case) are known as agantuja, in Ayurveda. xvi. Sharirik: Certain physiological disturbances may be prevalent in a person, if he/she is suffering from a disease. In such a case, the disease would be referred to as sharirik. xvii. Manasik: Manasik diseases are exactly opposite to sharirik diseases. According to the texts in Ayurveda, a person is said to be suffering from manasik disease, if he/she is affected by psychological disturbances.

Ayurveda is an ancient medicine system of the Indian subcontinent. The word Ayurveda has been a conjugation of two Sanskrit words ayus, meaning 'life' and veda, meaning 'science', thus ayurveda literally means the 'science of life'. Unlike other traditional medicinal systems, Ayurveda is more focused on simple and logical therapies. It is in fact a set of practical and simple guidelines for long life and good health. The basic feature of this medicinal therapy is the internal harmony of various body parts as well as bodys harmony with the surrounding nature and environment. Ayurveda is contemporary times is recognized by the western world to be a form of complementary and alternative medicine (CAM).

The Origin The existence of Ayurvedic medicinal therapy can be traced back to the origins of Vedas- Atharveda in particular. It is said that the Sushruta Samhita, the main text book of Ayurvedic medicine system written by famous Vaidya Sushruta appeared during the 1st millennium BCE. The other famous book for Ayurvedic studies is Charak Samhita, the one written by another famous Vaidya of ancient India, Charak. It is said that in ancient era, Ayurveda was one of the most advance medicinal therapies with the prescribed treatment for complex ailments like angina pectoris, diabetes, hypertension, stones as well as surgeries like plastic surgery, cataract surgery and anal fistulas. The Branches Unlike other traditional medicinal therapies, Ayurveda believes in specialized treatment. It branches itself into eight different categories to deal with eight different kinds of ailments. The Kaaya cikitsaa, Baala cikitsaa, Graha Chikitsa, S`aalakya tantra, Agada tantra, Rasayan Tantra, Vajeekarana cikitsaa and the S`alya tantra are the eight different branches of Ayurveda dealing with internal medicine, pediatrics, psychiatry, treatment of head and neck, toxicology, rejuvenation therapy, reproductive medicines and surgery. Practical Guidelines Other than mere treatment of ailments, Ayurveda also suggests practical guidelines for living healthy. It asks for striking balance between three substances: wind/spirit/air, phlegm, and bile, each representing divine forces necessary for a healthy body, mind or soul. Ayurveda also suggests consumption of right kind of diet. The suggestions for diet in Ayurvedic texts range from preparation and consumption of food, to healthy routines for day and night, sexual life, and rules for ethical conduct. Ayurveda stresses on moderation in food intake, sleep, sexual intercourse and the intake of medicine. Most of the time, Ayurveda suggests the use of vegetable drugs; however the use of animal product and minerals in the ayurvedic treatment are also not uncommon. Hundreds of vegetable drugs like cardamom and cinnamon are used in the treatment of various kinds of ailments. Animal products like milk, bones and gallstones and minerals like sulfur, arsenic, lead, copper sulfate and gold are also used in ayurvedic medicines.

Dhatu are basically the body tissues which are responsible for the functioning of the systems and organs and the structure of the body. Each of the Dhatus is built out of a previous one and they develop on the nourishment that comes from the digestive system. They are basically the result of the

action of catalysts that convert one tissue to another. The sole purpose of metabolism is to assemble proper Dhatus together in synchronization with which they carry out their role as the field of physiological activity.

Seven Dhatus Of Ayurveda Dhatu is originally a Sanskrit word which means that which enters into the formation of the body; the root Daa means support or that which bears.It is thus said to be the the base of growth and survival. According to Ayurveda, there are seven basic types of dhatus in a human body. These seven basic dhatus are composed of five mahabhutas. These dhatus remain inside the human body in a proper equilibrium so that the body can function properly. It is said that any kind of disturbance or imbalance in their equilibrium causes ailments and diseases. The seven dhatus are as follows: i. Rasa (Plasma) : Rasa literally means sap or juice. The primary function of Rasa is to strengthen rakta (blood) and provide nourishment. Basically, the tissue fluids consist of lymph and blood plasma. Accessory tissues are the breast milk and the menstrual blood. ii. Rakta (Blood) : Rakta Dhatu is said to be constituted from the metabolic refinement of the Rasa Dhatu. The primary function of the Rakta Dhatu is the nourishment of the body. It is also said to be the preserver of life. iii. Mansa (Muscles) : It is formed from the rasa and rakta dhatu and said to be the basic cover of bone and structure of body. iv. Meda (Fat) : Meda Dhatu are the finer part of the mansa dhatu that are also known as fatty tissue. They keep the lubrication between the various body organs and help the body in maintaining right internal temperature. v. Asthi (Bone) : Asthi i.e bones are the finer essence of the Meda Dhatu, which are converted into the most solid form of the Dhatus. They give the basic structure to the body. vi. Majja (Bone marrow) : Majja is the finer essence of the Asthi Dhatu. It is basically a semi- solid substance, yellow and red in color. Its primary function is filling the bone. It is also found inside the brain and spinal cord. vii. Shukra (Reproductive fluid or Semen) : Sukra is produced from the most refined essence of the Bone Marrow. It is the cause of Ojas, which is actually the essence of all the seven Dhatus. The Shukra is responsible for vitality and energy of the body.

Doshas play a vital role in the basic foundation of Ayurveda. They are responsible for coordinating and directing all the substances and structures of the body. According to Ayurveda there are three vital principles, which regulate and control the biological functions of the body. They are known as Vata, Pitta and Kapha. They are the subtle forms of the three bhutas -air, fire and water. It is very important

to maintain a proper balance between the three as any disturbance or imbalance in their equilibrium can lead to several kinds of ailments and diseases.

Three Doshas Of Ayurveda The three doshas in Ayurveda - vata dosha, pitta dosha and kapah doah, are invariably connected with life as it is found that the dead body and the other inanimate objects have none of the three doshas. As all of three doshas have their own significance and qualities, which are contrary to each other, a balance between all the three of them is required so as to maintain the equilibrium. Factors that create a balance between the tridoshas are healthy diet, regular exercise, fine digestion, and elimination of toxins. i. Vata Dosha : Doshas are referred to as 'dynamic energies' and out of all three 'vata dosha' is specified to be kinetic energy. Vata dosha is said to initiate all forms of activity and motion in the body. It acts as a network of communication from tissue to tissue and cell to cell. It is responsible for perception, assimilation and reaction. Vata dosha is the basis of all the communication process in the body. All the motions, transportation and electromagnetic activities are controlled by vata. ii. Pitta Dosha : Pitta dosha is responsible for all types of transformations in the body. Pitta controls digestion of food as well as conversion of light rays that fall on the retina to electric impulses. It is mainly associated with the chemical reaction and changes taking place in the body. Pitta controls emotion like anger, fear and boldness. Pitta controls digestion of food, it is responsible for hunger, appetite and thirst. The functions of pitta are more physical compare to vata. There are mainly five types of pitta dosha. The quality of Pitta dosha' is most predominant during youth and adulthood. 'Pitta' reflects the dynamics of youth. iii. Kapah Dosha : Kapah dosha is the third important part of dosha. It is the cohesive energy in the body and it smoothes out problems and provides support when needed. If 'vata' is kinetic energy, then 'kapha' on the contrary is potential energy. Kapha is the principle of water and earth and is thus, heavy and moist. It is said that carbohydrates and fats can increase 'kapha' There are five types of kapha dosha, based on both anatomy and body function. 'Kapha' abnormalities lead to respiratory disease, feeble mindedness, weakness and lethargy.

Mala are the substances or waste matter to be thrown out of the body. They are actually by products formed as a result of various physiological activities going on in the body. Purish (stool), Mutra (urine) and Sweda (sweat) are considered as main excretory product of the body. These are also known as Dushya as these tend to be influenced to cause pathology or disease by imbalanced doshas. These are known as Mala due to its principle property of Malinikaran i.e. Toxification. Malas are the third in the trinity of the body after the other two- doshas and dhatus. According to Ayurveda, the only

balanced condition of doshas, dhatus and malas is Aarogya (good health or disease free condition) and their imbalance causes ill health or disease. Significance of Mala As a result of metabolic processes being carried out in the body, essence of ingested food and waste products are constantly formed. If waste products are not being formed besides the essence i.e. beneficial products that nourish tissues, then metabolic process would be impaired ultimately leading to the formation of malformed tissues. So, there needs to be an appropriate segregation of essence of ingested food and waste product and excretion of the waste matter on appropriate time for maintaining health. Malas are actually the waste products of the body and their proper excretion from the body is essential, so that the proper health of the individual can be maintained because if the waste products are not thrown out they can toxify.

Three Forms Of Mala i. Purish (stool) : Purish or Stool are human feces, a result of defecation. They are the waste product of the human digestive system. They vary in appearance from person to person depending on the state of the whole digestive system, influenced by diet and health. Normally stools are semisolid, with a mucus coating. Any discrepancy caused in its normal process of defecation can lead to constipation, diarrhea, flatulence, heaviness or pain. ii. Mutra (Urine) : Urine is another important excretion from the human body. It is actually a liquid waste product of the body secreted by the kidneys through a phenomenon of filtration from blood. In human body, it is excreted through the urethra. Any imbalance like increased or decreased urine can lead to problems like urinary infections, kidney stones, abdominal pain and various bladder disorders. iii. Sweda (Sweat) : Sweating or Perspiration is known as Sweda in the terms of Ayurveda. It is basically a fluid that comes out of skin pores and primarily consists of water as well as various dissolved solids. It is basically a means of thermoregulation in human body. Any imbalance in sweat production can lead to itching, skin infections, irritation, burning sensation of body or reduced body temperature.

Diagnosis is a very vital aspect of Ayurvedic treatment. Diagnosis is to find out the root cause of a disease (Nidan). Unless the proper diagnosis is not done it is difficult to provide medicine and cure the disease. It is not always necessary that the root cause is internal. Many times the causes may be external. To give permanent relief the root cause of the disease has to be eliminated. Ayurveda thus believes not only in the treatment of the physical aspect of the disease but completely eliminating the disease. All causative factors of disease, whether internal or external, directly or indirectly create an imbalance (increase or decrease) in these doshas first and only then do the symptoms of the disease manifest. The causative factors of diseases can be the food, life style or other activities. Factors affecting your health could be your diet, life style or daily activities. In Ayurveda, the diagnosis and treatment of disease is always individual to each patient. As Ayurveda treats according to the constitution of an individual, it is known as a highly accurate and personalized method of analyzing diseases. All diseases are caused by aggravation of the three doshas i.e. vata, pitta and kapha. The Nidan or the

solution of the disease is done in accordance with the doshas. Diagnosis of Doshas Vatta There are various factors responsible for increasing vata: Excessive intake of food like cabbage, cauliflower, broccoli, sprouts, beans, dry fruits, mushrooms and raw foods. Travelling too much by any means of transportation. Untimely sleeping hours or late nights Too much eating of junk food, frozen food and micro waved cooked Exposure to sound pollution Too much exposure to television and computers or any electric gadgets Indulging more in sexual activities Excessive physical labor like sports Taking too much medicinal, recreational and stimulating drugs. Symptoms 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 Migraine Vertigo Tremors Pitta There are various factors responsible for increasing vata: Drinking too much tea, coffee, alcohol and excessive smoking increase pitta in the body. Eating of hot and spicy food Too intake of chillies, tomatoes, egg plant, spinach, and onions. Exposure to sun and heat also increases pitta. Symptoms: Some of the symptoms caused by excess of pitta in the body are: Hyperacidity Skin diseases Burning sensation Fever Infections Ulcers And Liver disorders Kapha There are various factors responsible for increasing Kapha: Eating too much sugars, fats, oily and fried foods, ice creams, meats, dairy products and nuts Sleeping during day time and less of physical activities Symptoms: Some of the symptoms caused by excess of kapha in the body are Asthma Cough and cold Congestion in the chest Anorexia Obesity


Ayurveda is a very logical science based on basic scientific principles. The science of Ayurveda doesnt only depend upon the symptoms as told by the patient rather it believes in a thorough examination to find out the root cause of the ailment in the patients body. According to Ayurveda, suppression of the disease is not the way to cure an ailment, a patient body can only be said to have recovered from the disease if the root cause of the ailment is eliminated and the body of the patient starts functioning normally. Thus, instead of finding methods to suppress the symptoms, Ayurveda focuses on finding the reasons of the underlying symptoms.

To find out the root cause of a disease in Ayurveda, there are certain few examinations that are mandatory to be conducted. The examination of a patient is divided into three folds and this is referred as rogi pariksha i.e. the observation of the patient. It is a three stage phenomenon where every possible causative aspect of the ailment in the patients body is examined. The three stages are as followsi. Darsanam : It is the stage of inspection and observation. In this stage various factors like age and other physical characteristic of the patient is thoroughly examined. ii. Sparsanam : It is the stage where the observation is done through touch method. Palpation, Percussion and Auscultation are three different sparsanam techniques. iii. Prasnam : It is the stage of interrogation where the patient is asked about his ailments and the symptoms that he is observing on a daily basis. It is done in order to synchronize the observation of the doctor with the feelings of the patient. Dasavidha & Ashtasthana Pareeksha Apart from this threefold examination the patient is also put to further detailed examination at times in order to find out all the possible causative elements behind the ailment. The three steps are then elaborated in two ways - Dasavidha Pareeksha (tenfold examination) and Ashtasthana Pareeksha (eightfold examination). In the Dasavidha Pareeksha (tenfold examination), check up of the patient is done by this test considering ten factors and in the Ashtasthana Pareeksha, the check up of the patient is done by this test considering eight factors. Dasavidha Pareeksha (Tenfold Examination) Dooshyam- Regarding the structural and functional abnormalities of the body Desham -Geographical situation of the place where patient lives (eg: marshy) Balam -Physical strength Kalam- The season and climatic conditions Analam -The digestive system of the patient Prakrithi- The natural Thridosha constitution of the body Vayas -Age of the patient. Satvam- Psychological strength of the patient Sathmyam- General and personal habits of the patient e.g.: smoking, hard working, day sleeping etc. Aharam- Nature of food (e.g. vegetarian or non-vegetarian) Ashtasthana Pareeksha (Eightfold Examination) Nadi-Pulse

Moothram-Urine Malam -Faecal matter Jihwa- Tongue-taste Sabdam -Voice and speech of the patient Sparsham-Touch, skin and tactile sense Drik -Eyes and vision Akrithi- General body build, eg: lean, muscular, etc.

Ayurveda is a very logical medical science based on the basic principles of body mechanism and organ functioning. More than healing a particular disease through external means, it focuses more on eliminating the root cause of the disturbances so that the body can regain its normal strength and endurance to function properly. Before prescribing any treatment for any kind of symptom, any ayurvedic practitioner goes through a three stage thorough examination of the patients body to find out symptoms and discrepancy that the patient body is exhibiting. The threefold examination or trividh pariksha is carried out in systematic stages like - Prashana, Pratyaksha and Anumana. The second of these three stages Pratyaksha is the method of direct observation.

The Stage Before Pratyaksha - Prashana (Questioning) It is the stage where the doctor questions a patient about the symptoms of the ailment he is suffering and his basic routine. It is done in order to find out a way to lead the examination procedure. Pratyaksha (Observation) Pratyaksha is the stage of direct observation. Here the doctor checks the discrepancies in the patients body through direct methods of observation. He checks the pulse, heart beat, breathing pattern, skin color, nails and hair of the patient. It is then helpful in drawing logical and clear reasons behind the ailment. The Stage After Pratyaksha - Anumana (Interference) It is the stage where inferences are drawn out the visible and described symptoms of the patient. It also includes the stage of Aptopadesh i.e. looking into the saying of seers in authoritative classical and other texts, so that one can draw a logical inference based on scientific principles. Types Of Pratyaksha (Observation) There are two types of Pratyaksha (observation) done - the observation of patient and the observation of the disease. The observation of the patient is done in order to find out the visible symptoms of ailment in his body. The other observation is that of disease to find out its intensity and seriousness. The body of the patient is thoroughly examined in order to find out what is wrong with the body of the patient and to what extent has the body been gripped by the disease. Here are the two steps of observation. Observation of Patient Eyes -Color, shape, proportions and the luster; the healthy or diseased look of the body. Ears -Intestinal sounds, the sounds of the joints and the finger knuckles, variations in the patient's voice or any other sounds that may be observed in any part of the body. Nose -Abnormal or normal odor of the body.

Touch -Normal or abnormal feel of the body, temperature of the body, swelling roughness or dryness, softness of the skin. Observation of Disease Observation of ailment is done through prescribed tests related to the body symptoms. Ayurveda in present times also gives due recognition to the pathologic and other related test to find out the problem in a patients body by using direct means of examination. Earlier, the observation of the disease was done through Ayurvedic tests and experiments.

Darshana in Ayurveda means complete inspection of the body. It is a way of assessing the nature of the disease through different tests and examination. It is derived from the first triad described in Trividh Pariksha for the assessment of diseases. It is actually the first method of clinical assessment. A careful inquiry and thorough physical examination of the patient concerning his constitution and illness are the prime factors necessary to elicit all the data of the case. The correct interpretation of these facts and systematic reasoning based on them, are essential to arrive at the accurate diagnosis and prognosis and to decide the right line of treatment. Methodical investigation and logical decision are the foundation of this science of medicine. Factors For Inspection In order to determine the kind of ailment patient is suffering from and to determine its intensity and seriousness, a very detailed diagnosis of the disease is necessary. The doctor then on the basis of the discrepancies from normal body conditions determines the problems in the body of the patients. He figures out two to three possibilities and cross checks them in order to test his hypothesis. While inspection of the body he looks out for those factors which can give him a clue about the disease. In this method, the person is totally assessed by the physician and the following things are noted: Age Symptoms of the disease Strength and Stamina of the body Color of the skin Shape of the body. Dryness or excessive oiliness of skin and hair. Eyes - color, features etc. Nails-its brittleness and color Weight Some Rules There are certain rules and regulations regarding the assessment of disease in Ayurveda. It is said that until the examinations are done in a correct atmosphere, the result derived cant be true. That is why factors like light, hygiene and state of the patient are various important factors and should be in an ideal state during the examination. It is believed that slightest of discrepancy in the assessment can lead to a completely wrong treatment. Thus, while examination of the patient the factors mentioned below must be kept in concern Assessment should be done as far as possible in sunlight because the inference drawn in artificial light can be wrong. The place should be clean and calm. The patient should be relaxed and at ease. Examination of the patient should be the only concern of the physician. Assessment should be done from head to toe. The microscopic pathological investigations done now-a-days can also be included under inspection. Certain points that are instructed by the physician prior to the examination like being empty stomach or after having first meal should also be religiously followed.

Ayurveda is a very vast medical science. It has several prescribed to various complex ailments that do not find solution in any other modern medical sciences. According to Ayurveda the fundamental cause

of diseases is imbalance of the three doshas - Vata, Pitta and kapha. 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. There is a wide range of methods in Ayurveda to assess diseases based on their constitution and then prescribe the suitable treatment. The threefold examination, or trividh pariksha as it is called, consists of investigation, which is carried out by the three methods. Read on to explore more about the stages of ailment investigation in Ayurveda.

Two Stages Preceding Anumana i. Prashana It is the stage in which the doctor questions the patient about his problems, ailments and symptoms. He also asks about the period since the patient is suffering from the aliment. He enquires about his daily routine, meal he intakes, his physical activities and several other question that can help the doctor understand the state of the patient and the root causes behind it. ii. Pratyaksha It is the direct objective examination of the patient by direct methods like checking the pulse, measuring the intensity of breathing, size and state of stomach, any outer scars or wounds etc. This is the stage where physical evidences are collected in order to support the patient statements or checking out details beyond the patients explanation. Anumana The third and the most important stage of the examination is Anumana. It is basically the objective examination of the patient by indirect or inferential methods. The goal or purpose of investigation is to obtain a dear conception of the status of one's bodily strength including resistance (bala pramana), his accurate pathological condition (dosha pramana) and oneslife term (ayu pramana). Methods of Anumana Anumana is the anticipation of living beings i.e. the situation where the perceived knowledge is beyond the judgement of our senses we anticipate. Two important things are considered Lingi (matter) and Linga (property). By the means of Linga (property), the lingi is identified. Linga and Lingi has Samya relation (Intimate relation). The medical practitioner uses various indirect factors to diagnose the disease like for example: Strength is determined by capacity for exercise. Sense organs by their clarity of perception. Mind by the power of concentration. Understanding by the purposeful nature of action. Passion by the strength of attachment. Infatuation by the lack of understanding. Anger from the actions of violence. Grief by despondency. Joy by exhilaration. Pleasure from the sense of satisfaction.

In Ayurveda, the diagnosis and treatment of disease is always based on the constitution of an individual or on an individual basis. As such, it is known as a highly accurate and personalized method of analyzing every kind of diseases. There are different stages of diagnosis of disease, in ayurveda. The essential element in this type of treatment is to find out the root cause of the disease. Contrary to the popular belief, the root cause of a disease need not necessarily be inside the body. Many a times, the cause may be outside the body. The five method of diagnosis is called nidan panchak. In ayurveda, for assessing the specific symptoms there are three-fold examination, eight-fold examination and tenfold examination. The three-fold examination, or trividh pariksha as it is called, consists of sparshana (palpation method), darshana (inspection) and prashna (interrogation). To get detailed information about each step of the three-fold examination, read through the following lines.

Stage Before Sparshana - Darshan (Visual Observation) The first method of clinical assessment in ayurveda, it is the method through which the medical practitioner comes to know of the nature of the disease externally. The patient is assessed for any enlarged or shrinked body parts, symptoms, color and shape of the body, dryness or excessive oiliness and color and features of eyes. Sparshana (Touching / Palpation Method) Sparshana is one of the methods from the first triad described in Trividh Pariksha for the assessment of diseases. In this method, the medical practitioner examines a person by touching. The factors, which sometimes cannot be understood by inspection, are better known by palpation. The cognitive organ of touch i.e., the skin carries out this examination. Pulse reading, temperature reading, blood pressure monitoring, coldness, hotness, clamminess, dryness, intolerance to touch, finger test over the eye balls to assess the intraocular pressure, palpation of glands and tumor (gulmalgranthi), palpation and percussion of ascitis qalodara are tools for diagnosis. The factors understood by palpation are: Reflexes Rigidity or softness of different organs Temperature of the body Texture of the skin Swelling and tumor Flatulence and ascites Stages of different wounds and ulcers Stage After Sparshana - Prashna (Questioning) An important aspect of the whole diagnosis process, in this, the physician is required to ask the patient all the necessary questions in order to treat him/her properly. These questions at times are very

beneficial as they enhance the treatment or diagnosis procedure. Interrogation is basically of two types - general and specific questioning. General Interrogation Name, age and address of the patient Sex Profession Present complaint Duration of the complaint History of the previous illness Family history for diseases such as hypertension, diabetes, epilepsy etc Individual history - addictions, habits, habitat etc Progress of the present complaint Any specifications regarding the disease Specific Interrogation Profession Financial status Addictions, diet and habitat Congenital anomalies Hereditary diseases Previous history of any diseases Psychological abnormalities Pediatric problems


Ayurvedic Approach to Healthy Life
Ayurveda is not only a medical science but also a way of healthy living. Apart from prescribing treatment to various chronic and complex diseases, Ayurveda also emphasizes on an ideal method of healthy living. A special section of Ayurveda, swasthavritta deals with the science of health and the code for a healthy conduct. Swasthavritta which literally means 'the regime of abiding in one's own nature' is an individuals guide to the path of healthy and long life. In Ayurveda, ones body is regarded as a temple and thus, several ways are prescribed for keeping it healthy and young life long. Healthy Living & Ayurveda According to Ayurveda, there is no magical remedy or short cut for healthy living. Instead, strict and staunch regulation of the charyas, the principles of healthy lifestyle which include a proper routine regarding ahar, vihar and achars based on hetu (Material cause), kala (Season) and desha (Habitat) are the only ways for healthy living. Ayurveda defines the healthy state as: 'A person, whose somatic and psychic humors are in equilibrium, digestion is uniformly healthy, with normal functioning of the fundamental tissues of the body and body wastes, accompanied by the processes of the soul, cognitive organs and the mind, is said to be a healthy person.' The principles of maintaining a proper well being of the body and mind are two-fold, first the consumption of diet and second, the observance of personal, moral, seasonal and spiritual conduct. Swasthavritta mainly emphasizes on following a proper routine regime as well as seasonal regime. Other than these two, Swasthavritta also prescribes Sadvritta, the right ways of living i.e. following good mental, social, religious, personal and moral conduct. Thus, we can sum up Swasthavritta as an ideal lifestyle for a human being. It is actually the crux of Ayurvedic living.

In olden days, the Rishis initiated the science of ayurveda for the general awareness of the public. Public Svasthavrtta is a very important subject in ayurveda. Attempts were made on a large scale to

apply the knowledge of ayurveda and collect medicinal substances to be used in days of scarcity. The authorities of ayurveda, as a general rule, declare it their business to solely relieve the public in distress, mainly caused by diseases. They consider this to be their religious duty. Ayurveda also offers spiritual and mental treatments for ailments in which no physical relief can be offered. The treatments consist of two parts: Daivavyapasraya and Sattvavijaya. To get detailed information about the two parts of treatments, browse through the following lines. Ayurveda & Spiritualism Daivavyapasraya The term Daiva has been used with respect to the sense of karmas, which are related to our previous life. The method imbibes a sense of confidence in an individual, making his/her optimistic and positive. It is basically achieved through methods of propitiation of supernatural elements through which one can maintain emotional and optimistic balance of mind. Pranipatagamana, i.e. prostrating one-self several times, before the-deities, per day, for several days, months and years. Mantras/ chanting hymns Specially qualified medicinal stones and charms Religious and auspicious practices of worship Offerings to superhuman beings Offerings to Fire-God by way of sacrifices Services of vows Donation to worthy men in atonement of the wrong done by the donor Observance of fasts and rites Svastyayana i.e. invocation of favors of supernatural beings, through the medium of blessings solicited from worthy and pious human beings who are supposed to be mediators. Sattvavijaya Sattvavijaya helps to control the desires for unnecessary worldly objectives, which are the cause of all types of mental worries. The Mental Svasthavrtta is a very important aspect not only in the case of an individual, but also in that of public.

Ayurveda is comprised of two words. Ayur means Life, and Veda means Knowledge. Thus, Ayurveda deals with how to live a healthy, balanced life. Ayurveda focuses on living in tune with nature. It recognizes the intimate relationship between the individual and the environment. The existence and well being of a person depends largely on the continuous adjustments and interactions with the external and internal factors of the environment. Its principles are universal. By connecting mind, body and soul, Ayurveda strives to improve harmony and happiness in an individual. Ayurveda emphasizes on the maintenance of good health through a balanced daily routine (Dinacharya), seasonal regime (Ritucharya) and a wholesome diet. As we know that the climatic and seasonal changes have an important effect on the health of a person, it is important to make our body immune enough to adjust to those changes and adapt itself accordingly. Ayurveda recognizes that seasonal changes have a profound effect on our health, and recommends many helpful suggestions for how we can adapt our lifestyle to stay balanced in each season. Ayurveda made the suggestions person specific because one lifestyle or diet cannot suit everybody as people have different constitutional make up.

Seasonal Regime in Ayurveda According to Ayurveda the constitution or dosha of the body and the seasons are intimately related. Our health is affected by the qualities of the climate we live in; our outer environment influences our inner world. For example, when the air is damp, cold and wet it increases these qualities in your body. Hence there is an increase in mucous, catarrh and colds in winter. There are various environmental factors like temperature, humidity, wind, rain, clouds and atmospheric pressure and sunlight etc that affect our health. Winters You must have noticed that when the temperature is extreme cold or extreme hot then there are maximum cases of illness. In such extreme conditions one may be freeze to death or die of sunstroke. One remains comfortable in temperature between 60 f and 76 f and humidity range of 40-70%. In extremes of weather below / beyond these ranges, the body tries to maintain its internal temperature mainly by shivering when it is too cold and through perspiration when it is too hot. Summer In summer season, one should avoid sunlight; eat less of fat food, oil, and meat, sleeping during daytime and the eastern winds. Sour, salty and pungent foods, should also be avoided, as they tend to increase pitta. The diet mainly consisting of sweet, bitter, cold and light items that pacify pitta should be taken. The strength and digestive power are poor in summer. Hence one should restrict the food intake in this season. Cold food items should be taken to counteract the effect of the hot season. Monsoon In the monsoon all the three doshas are vitiated. Light diet and less oily food are advised, as digestive power is weak. It is better to take as much as fluids as possible. One should not follow this regime mechanically but should try to understand the meaning and purpose behind it. The daily and seasonal regime should be modified according to the age, sex, region, food habit, physical stamina, digestive power, mental health and condition of health. The central teaching of Ayurveda is that in order to optimize your health you must clear the accumulation of the doshas from your system. Any increase in the doshas can cause illness.

Ayurveda is a very vast and ancient medical science. Unlike other medical sciences, instead of focusing on treatment of any particular disease, Ayurveda focuses more on the healthy living and well being. For healthy living, Ayurveda emphasizes on consuming right kind of diet which is healthy and nutritious. According to Ayurveda, there are positive and negative attributes of diet. Since, Ayurveda

deals with a holistic approach to healing; it covers the diet factor in depth. In Ayurveda, food is considered not only as mixture of the basic ingredients like proteins, vitamins, fats and carbohydrates, but something, which serves as a source of energy for mind and soul. Types Of Food Diet is considered to be vital for a human body as it provides the basic nutrients, which are necessary to carry out the basic activities of digestion and metabolism. Ayurveda has categorized food into three types based on its basic quality-the Satvic or spiritual quality, Rajasic or active quality, and Tamasic or material quality. It is said that whatever food we eat affects our mind in accordance with its basic quality. Satvic food is enriching and elevating while Rajasic food has a basic tendency to provoke man to a materialistic and selfish way of living. Tamasic food is one, which leads to a devilish streak in a person. No Single Diet Though different kinds of diet are suggested in Ayurveda, there is no specific diet which can be said to be ideal for every human body. It is because every human being has a different body structure and digestive system. There are various factors that need to be kept in mind while working out the ideal diet for every individual as it will be distinctly different based on the person's specific constitutional characteristics. However there are certain points given below that you must keep in concern while consuming any food: Nutritional quality of the food and benefits of in taking it. Awareness of the alterations that might takes place in its nutritional value, with time. The effects of combining foods - proper and improper combinations as suggested by Ayurveda The quantity of a particular food that is healthy to intake. Difference in the time while consumption of two different kind of food items. The places and climatic condition where the food is grown prepared and consumed. The effect of consuming the food in a particular season. Use of artificial flavors, chemicals, preservatives and colors. Good Food Habits Other than what you intake, there are certain other factors that are mandatory to be inculcated in your food habit if you want to remain healthy and active for a long time. Some of them are given below Skipping meal is one habit that should be strictly avoided as it strains your digestive system. If skipping meal becomes a regular phenomenon it can lead to chronic hyperacidity, gastritis and duodenal ulcers. Eating in excess and before the normal time and interval may lead to indigestion, obesity, and anorexia. Consuming less fluid that required also leads to indigestion and acidity. Drinking of water between meals should be avoided.

Ayurveda is an ancient Indian medical science, the origin of which can be traced back to the Vedas. It is a holistic science which comprises of both practical and scientific information on various subjects beneficial to mankind like health, philosophy, astrology and engineering. Ayurveda does not only deal with treatment of diseases but also prescribes a healthy way of life. For achieving a healthy set up of lifes senses, Ayurveda calls for striking an internal harmony of various body parts as well as achieving bodys harmony with the surrounding nature and environment. Life according to Ayurveda is a proper combination of healthy senses, mind, body and soul and the aim of Ayurveda is to provide a completely healthy body to every human being with a perfect somatic and psychic humors equilibrium, uniformly healthy digestion, normal functioning of the fundamental tissues of the body and body wastes, accompanied by the enlightenment of the soul, cognitive organs and the mind. Ayurveda does not simply focuses on getting rid from a physical disease rather it believes in bringing out ideal physical and mental traits. Unlike other ancient medicinal sciences, Ayurveda has specialized branches and sections targeted at every possible level of life. Apart from its eight branches Kaaya chikitsaa, Baala chikitsaa,

Graha Chikitsa, S`aalakya tantra, Agada tantra, Rasayan Tantra, Vajeekarana chikitsaa and the S`alya tantra for dealing with eight different kinds of ailments, Ayurveda also has Swasthavritta, which is an individuals guide to the path of healthy and long life. The science of Ayurveda is immensely elaborate and detailed. Apart from general guidelines on healthy living, it also stresses on moderation in food intake, sleep, sexual intercourse and the intake of medicine in its individual sections. Ayurveda in detail describes about all the possible causative reasons for defection in any of the sections of the normal course of life and also prescribes about various ways for eliminating the root cause of the ailment so that there is no further possibility of any other kind of complications or side effects. Ayurveda other than treatment of an ailment also focuses on the lifestyle and daily routine of an individual. It says that though there is no ideal diet or ideal regime for every human being in general as the need, the nature and the demand of energy varies from individual to individual. However, it describes certain guidelines for in taking food that are nutritional and fresh and emphasizes on avoiding extra oily and heavy food. It also prescribes the practice of yoga for maintenance of all the vital organs of the body. Ayurvedic treatment is also different from the treatment of other traditional medicine therapies. It mainly relies on herbal treatment that mainly comprises of of powders, tablets, decoctions, medicated oils etc. prepared from natural herbs, plants and minerals. Panch Karma therapy is also used as a treatment in many diseases. Panchkarma is a purifying therapy to enhance the metabolic process through food and herbal medicines. Panch Karma means five types of actions or techniques or treatment. As the wastes are eliminated from the body the person becomes healthy.

In Ayurveda, food (Ahar), sleep (nidra) and brahmacharya (controlled sex) are regarded as the three pillars or tripods of healthy living. It is important for our body to be adjusted to timely intake of good quality and proper food, regular sleeping habits and controlled indulgence in sex because as all this ensures long and healthy life. It is thus vital to have a regular systematic food and sleeping habit so that the body has a regularized automatic system of maintenance. It is even mandatory to maintain a balanced sex life and avoid extra indulgence worldly life. This practice of celibacy along with a proper daily regime not only promotes life and preserves health but also give enrichment to the soul and other cognitive organs and the mind. Given below is the description of the three pillars or tripods of healthy livingThree Tripods In Ayurveda i. Diet : We are what we eat. So, it is essential to know what to eat, when to eat, how much to eat and how to eat. Though there are concepts of generalized diets, which are applicable to one and all, Ayurveda says that it is the individual who knows best what suits his body and mind and he should thus, act accordingly. The popping of all the vitamin pills in the world is not going to make you healthy - for all you know your body might just reject them. One important principle in Ayurveda is that there is nothing in the world which is not a good food, it is only the combination of several factors that renders a substance unfit for consumption for a particular individual while the same substance might be absolutely palatable and digestible and in fact, good for the health of another individual. The second important point to be noted that whatever the substance, however good it may be, if taken in excess, will become toxic and harmful to the body. Timely and moderate eating habits will serve you well. ii. Sleep : Give your body sufficient rest and find out what a different person you are! In pursuit of all the material benefits and comforts, you treat your body like a donkey; use it to the extent you can; and finally are an exhausted person when you have the comforts. When you give your overheated car time to cool off, can't you give your over used body time to recover from the stress and strain? Happiness and sorrow, growth and wasting, strength and weakness, virility and impotence, knowledge and ignorance, life and its cessation - all are dependent on sleep. iii.Celibacy Total abstinence from sexual activity may not be possible for ordinary mortals - but a restrained sexual life, keeping in mind the higher goal of eternal happiness, is certainly possible. Sexual promiscuity

leads to various diseases. It is therefore very important to take care of your sexual health apart from other factors like diet and sleep.

Ayurveda is a very vast science and it is divided into eight different branches namely Kaaya chikitsaa, Graha Chikitsa, S`aalakya tantra, Agada tantra, Rasayan Tantra, Vajeekarana chikitsaa, S`alya tantra and Baala chikitsaa or Kaumarbhrutya. Kaumarbhrutya is one of the eight specialized branches of Ashtang Ayurveda that mainly focuses on the pediatrics issues. It covers all aspects of child growth from the neonatal phase to adolescence including treatment for problems at every stage. This branch mainly deals on prenatal, natal and postnatal care in addition to gynecology and obstetrics. This specialized branch recognized direct links between the physical and mental health of an expecting mother and that of her progeny. Apart from gynecology and pediatrics, this branch also meticulously deals with the problem of infertility. In Kaumarbhrutya, there are detailed descriptions of mother and child care. This branch of Ayurveda also consists of recommendations of particular diet, regimen, nutrition and conduct for women during and after delivery. According to Kaumarbhrutya, it is important for the mother to attain perfect health so that she can feed her child. So, advanced is this science that thousands of years back Charaka, the great physician, through the branch of Kaumarbhrutya described the growth and progress of fetus in minute detail. He even mentioned about a technique called punsanvan vidhi for having a child of one's desired gender, intelligence and constitution. This branch of Ayurveda is beneficial for every mother and her child.

'Kaumarbhratya', one of the eight branches of Ayurveda, is especially dedicated to the good health of children. Since ages, Ayurvedic preparations have been used in order to build a healthy body and sharp intellect, right from infancy to adulthood. With special emphasis on baby care, Ayurveda emphasizes on the use of certain tonics and medications that can develop immunity power, intelligence in the children and shield them from various kinds of diseases. A large number of people are now resorting to herbal Ayurvedic medicines and tonics, in order to protect their children from diseases. In the following lines, we have provided information on Ayurvedic childcare. Physical Care Instead of using vaccinations, Kashyap Samhita describes the natural ways to build up the power of immunity in children. The best way to develop immunity and maintain vitality in children is oil massage. Referred to as 'snehana', oil massage is one of the best ways to take care of the overall health of the infant. Massage with bala taila, oil specially formulated for children, is the first therapy that newborns should receive after birth. Apart from increasing immunity, snehana increases the mental capacity of the child. Since children's skin is more permeable than adult's skin, it is suggested to make use of herbs with the massage oil. Apart from oil massage, medicated bath is quintessential to maintain overall health of the newborn. Moreover, basic hygiene is necessary to shield the child from diseases and infections. Therefore, the mouth of the children, especially after breastfeeding, should be cleaned. Clean clothes, bedding and proper handling of the baby are also part of Ayurvedic childcare. Psychological Care Apart from physical care, it is very important to take care of the psychological aspects pertaining to children. The duty of the parents is to protect their children from emotional traumas, as they grow older. This would ensure development of a confident and wise adult. All the fears and insecurities of the children should be banished, and the best way to serve the purpose is to spend quality time with the little ones. The natural fears of the kids - fear of dark and loneliness - should be addressed. One should avoid frightening the child and should maintain a pleasant atmosphere at home. The Ayurvedic Approach

While physical and psychological care is quintessential, certain Ayurvedic tonics and vaccinations would add to the good health of the children. In Ayurvedic texts, particularly in Samhitas, the descriptions of tonics and various types of medications are given in a detailed manner. Although the tonics do not form the main requisite for the health of the growing children, they can be taken as supplements. Moreover, such tonics enhance the intelligence and concentration power of children. Certain tonics and rasayans, like Chyavanprasha, are commonly prescribed by Ayurvedic practitioners. Gold (Svarna) bhasma can act as a good medicine for children, when it is mixed with a paste of brahmi (Centella asiatica) and sankhapuspi (Convolvulus pluricaulis) and given with ghee and honey. It adds to the power of immunity of the children, when consumed on a regular basis, as prescribed by the Ayurvedic doctor.


Breast milk is the first nutrient to an infant. It is the newborn's privilege and the mother's pleasure to breast feed her baby. Termed as lactation, the secretion of milk from breasts is beneficial for both the mother and the child in a number of ways. Breastfeeding is prerequisite for the growth of the newborn. It should never be avoided, because it is considered the most divine way to show love to a newborn. Ayurvedic scholars have praised the importance of breast milk, due to the myriad health benefits associated with it. In Ayurveda, breast milk is termed as nectar, through which the infant recognizes his/her mother. Moreover, nursing helps create a strong emotional bond between a mother and her newborn. Read on to know the importance of breast milk in Ayurveda. Significance Of Breast Milk According to Ayurveda, breastfeeding is the easiest and the healthiest way to feed a newborn, as the milk is rich in nutrients. Breast feeding reduces the chances of infection and increases the immunity of the baby Breast milk contains vitamins, minerals and enzymes, which aid the baby's digestion. The amino acids - the building blocks of proteins - present in breast milk are well balanced for the baby. These proteins aid the proper functioning of the baby's intestinal tract. Breast milk is rich in lymphocytes and macrophages, which protect the newborn against intestinal inflammation. Breast milk is a rich source of iron, which can be easily absorbed by the infant better than any other source of the mineral. Breast milk promotes the overall health of the baby, which is one of the motives of Ayurveda. Since mother's milk is available at the optimum temperature that is most suitable for the infant, it is free from all possible sources of contamination. The immunoglobulins (antibodies) present in the breast milk protect the baby from upper respiratory infections and gastro intestinal infections. This is the reason why breast fed babies stay healthier than their formula fed counterparts. Studies suggest that the amino acid trptophan present in breast milk helps the baby to acquire sound sleep during the night time. The hormone prolactin, responsible for the production of breast milk, functions as a natural tranquilizer for the mother and baby alike. Formula-fed children are likely to become obese, when they reach the stage of adolescence. On the other hand, those fed with breast milk are less likely to be obese at their teenage. Breast feeding plays a pivotal role in preventing various kinds of digestive diseases in the infant, such as ulcerative colitis and Crohn's disease. Childhood cancers are also prevented by breast feeding.

Ayurveda is a kind of medicinal science that focuses more on healthy living than treatment of diseases. According to Ayurveda, a healthy body has lots of immunity to over come the problems caused by some foreign element and that is why instead of focusing on the treatment or cure of a disease one should focus on developing the immunity in the body as well as healthy regulation of body organs. Ayurveda has special focus on children. According to Ayurveda, the initiatives to live healthy should be taken right from the prenatal phase and that is why Ayurveda emphasizes on the proper care and well being of a kid right from the phase of conception. In the eight specialized branches of Ayurveda, Kaumarbhrutya is one branch where there is a very clear description about fine upbringing of a child right from birth to the age of sixteen. It is said that this branch consists of tips, which are being used to build a healthy body and sharp intellect right from the time of infancy for thousands of years. The most important aspect of pediatrics or childhood is growth and development, as they are the parameters of health and disease. Proper diet is the gateway to good health. Ayurveda thus emphasizes on feeding healthy, easily digestible vegetarian food to a child in order to keep his digestive system strong and healthy forever. Ideal Children's Diet in Ayurveda According to Ayurveda, breast milk has no substitution for a new born kid. It is an ideal diet for the newborn child and a newborn child does not need anything beyond it in first few weeks of his birth. The child should be given good and nutritious substance from the beginning to make the base of his health strong. In the beginning a child must be fed with the breast milk at proper intervals so that the child develops proper health and immunity. As the child grows in a very rapid speed in the initial few months after sometime he requires food items beyond mothers milk. After a few months, the diet should consist of wholesome food for the proper development of the child. Liquid diet made with husk-free and well washed sali or sasti rice (especially old rice), mixed with oleaginous substances and salt is ideal. Balance of Vata, Pitta, and Kapha energies, the corner stone of good health can be achieved in early childhood. Health problems in children can be easily controlled by herbal preparations suggested by Ayurveda. The powders (flour) of wheat and barley can also be given according to congeniality. Hot electuary or items cooked with vidanga herb, salt, oleaginous substance is beneficial. For kids suffering from diarrhoea, kodrava herb can also be mixed to this electuary. If the child is having pitta constitution, then grapes (mrdvika) with honey and ghee (ghrta) are an ideal remedy.

Mothers milk is considered to be mandatory for a newly born. It is said that the mothers first milk is helpful in giving immense immunity to a child. Even as he/she grows, for initial few months a child requires nothing except breast milk. It is an ideal diet for a newly born and contains enough nutritive substance to take care of his nutritional requirement as well as sufficient enough to fulfill his gastrointestinal requirements. Not only this, breast feeding is also a way to make a child emotionally safe and secure. Warm touch and cuddle of his/her mother develops a kind of assurance in his/her mind that he is well cared and protected. Breastfeeding is a feature of our human design whereby newborn babies get the nutrition, immunity and nurturing required for growth and development. Unfortunately there can be health problems, which undermine the natural breast-feeding process. If the mother does not have enough breast milk or if she is sick or her milk is grossly vitiated, in that case wet nurse would or dhatri would be required. In some cultures wet nurses were slaves or as today, many are employed allowing mothers freedom to work or pursue a lifestyle choice. It is better to employ a wet nurse as no other milk can be compared with mother's milk for proper growth and development of the child. Vagbhata, a famous physician suggested that it is better to employ two wet nurses so that they can feed their own babies adequately, however, this factor is now considered as a myth as doctors say that the mixture of milk with different qualities can upset the baby. Also, before employing a wet nurse for your baby you must ensure the health and other vital factors because her milk has direct connection with the development of your kid. You should look for a homely, loving and caring wet nurse as she will also develop a psychological connection with your child.

Qualities of Wet-Nurse : Physical and psychological status of wet-nurse should be taken in consideration as they influence quality and quantity of milk. Here are few other qualities that you should look for in the wet-nurse you employ for your kid Middle Aged - because very young woman does not have any affection for child and old woman can not withstand troubles (the latter's milk is also not much nutritious) She should be humble or modest She should be extremely patient by nature She should be able to produce ample amount of breast-milk She should be over-cautious She must be an expert in nursing She must be clean and hygienic She should have a good character, be affectionate and interested in the welfare of the baby. She should have a caring nature She should not be on any prescribed medicine She should not be suffering from communicable diseases.

A newly born child is sans several features that develop later on in his process of development throughout his life. The coming of teeth or teething is one such feature that normally starts at around 5-6 months in a child. However, this may vary from kid to kid, as in some kids the process of teething starts very early where as some take a little more time. The rate and order of emerging teeth also varies from baby to baby. Usually, the first tooth that usually starts to pop out is the lower central incisor, which may be as early as 3 months old, and the last teeth to show them selves are usually the second molars, around about 2 years old. All the milk teeth of the late come up by the age of 21/2 years usually. Teething Problems Most of the time, teething gives a really difficult time to both babies and parents as for a kid its an exceptionally painful process and they get badly irritated throughout the phase. The early symptoms of teething include drooling, swollen red gums and a fair amount of pain. It is a common believe that teething causes illness, like babies suffer from fevers or diarrhea, but according to medical practitioner it is not the case it is more likely that they have caught a bug at the same time. A teething baby will be more restless than usual, and more prone to nasal congestion and ear infections. They will want to bite on hard objects, drool, and may have trouble sleeping. Sore and inflamed gums, a low-grade temperature, and increased irritability are also signs of teething. Adult teeth, which start to nudge through from the age of six or seven, do not cause anything like the same discomfort. Teething Remedies There are some very effective natural remedies prescribed in Ayurveda for the teething pain in kids. One such treatment is using dilute one drop of clove oil in 1-2 tablespoons of safflower oil, dip your clean forefinger in this mix and gently massage the affected area to relieve sore gums. This process if repeated for 2-3 times a day gives a lot of relief from pain. Gently massaging the teeth with one finger is also helpful in relieving the pain. It is also said that providing teether is also helpful in these stages. Give him/her something cold to chew on, such as a plumb, or gel filled teething ring, or a cold washcloth. Dental Care for Babies It is important to keep your babies teeth clean. For the first year there is no need to brush the teeth, but it is important to keep them clean, so it may be a good idea to give them a wipe with gauze once a day, perhaps at bedtime. At about 18 months will be a good time to start using a toothbrush on your baby's teeth. You will have to do this for him for the first few times, not only so that they can learn how to brush their teeth correctly, but also because they probably won't have the concentration and dexterity to brush them self. When your baby turns 3, you should make an appointment with a pediatric dentist for a check up.

A balanced diet is one of the key Ayurvedic tools, for promoting good health. The practitioners of the 'Science of Life' (Ayurveda) suggest that the diets for people are individualized, based on many factors, such as their age, gender, the doshic tendencies, the strength of body tissues and digestive fires and the level of ama (toxins) in their body. This is the reason why Ayurveda is considered the complete system of healthcare, since ages. The effect of right and wrong type of diet is clearly mentioned by the Ayurvedic practitioners. This helps people to have an idea about what to eat and the right way of eating food. Apart from a wholesome diet, studies conducted by Ayurveda practitioners also suggest that one should follow some basic rules, when it comes to consumption of food. According to Ayurveda, food should be consumed only after the digestion of the previous meal, because it promotes proper digestion, appetite and the right manifestation of the natural urges. Ayurveda is the complete health guide, which insists that all the six tastes should be included in each main meal that you eat. That is the reason why Ayurveda is referred to as a holistic alternative science.

A pivotal part of Ayurveda, the rasayanas (vitalizers) help a great deal in replenishing the vital body fluids that are necessary for smooth functioning. Intelligence, memory power, youth and luster are also enhanced by rasayanas. Some of the common rasayanas prescribed by Ayurvedic practitioners include Chyavanaprasha, Pippali rasayana, Triphala rasayana and Shilajita rasayana. Available in a number of brands, the Chyavanaprasha is the most popular and widely used Ayurvedic rasayana. Go through the following lines to know more about the very popular Ayurvedic rasayana Chyavanaprasha.

Ingredients Of Chyavanaprasha A number of recipes are formulated for the very popular rasayana - Chayavanaprasha. One of the most popular recipes, adopted by a number of brands, is the one wherein the key ingredients are herbs and

spices. Traditionally, about 20 to 80 ingredients are used to prepare the rasayana. One of the chief ingredients of Chyavanaprasha is amla (Indian gooseberry). Other ingredients include ashwagandha, pippali, cardammon, nutmeg and cinnamon. All these ingredients are blended in a base of ghee (clarified butter) and honey. Importance Of Chyavanaprasha As a rasayana, Chyavanaprasha holds special significance in Ayurveda. This is primarily because it is one of the very popular rasayanas, prescribed for different age groups. From children to adults to old people, Chyavanaprasha can be consumed by all, at moderate doses. It serves as a tonic to boost energy, memory power. Tubercular patient, debilitated persons and those suffering from pestoral lesions can also be benefited with the consumption of the rasayana. It holds supreme position among the rasayanas, as it is the elixir of Rishi Chyavana. Benefits Of Chyavanaprasha Chyavanaprasha is beneficial for the health in a number of ways. It improves skin complexion, makes the skin exude its natural glow and radiance and fights dermal bacterial infection too. In addition to this, it promotes the growth of thick, healthy hair and helps the body to absorb calcium, thereby helps strengthening the bones and teeth. The sense organs are sharpened due to the regular consumption of Chyavanaprasha. If used in the proper way, Chyavanaprasha increases the body's desire for sex, thus serving as the right medicine for married couple. It increases strength as well. Chyavanaprasha is especially beneficial for asthma patients and those suffering from dyspnea, fever, heart diseases, gout, diseases of urine and semen and disorders of speech. The anti-oxidant properties of Chyavanaprasha help the body to act against the ageing process thereby helps one maintain youthfulness. The rasayana enhances fertility, keeps the menstrual cycle to repeat itself on the right time and helps one to overcome the difficulties of constipation. It also tones the muscles and enhances the protein synthesis effectively. The rasayana promotes a healthy and long life, which is free of diseases.

The rejuvenator group of herbal medicines in Ayurveda is termed as 'Rasayanas'. The micronutrients, which are one of the key ingredients of Rasayanas, are beneficial to the body, because they improve health, immunity, vigor, vitality and longevity of life. They are great stress busters, which is the reason why Rasayanas like Chyavanaprasha and Pippali Rasayana are recommended for people of different age groups, from children to adults. Through experimental and clinical studies, it has been proved that Rasayanas are beneficial for the health in myriad ways. Apart from the very popular Chyavanaprasha, Triphala rasayana, Pippali rasayana, Shilajatu and Achara rasayana, there are some other rasayanas, which are good for health. Read on to know more about the common Ayurvedic Rasayanas. Rasayanas in Ayurveda Ashwagandha Rasayana The key ingredient of Ashwagandha Rasayana is ashwagandha, the Indian ginseng. The herbal medicine has a very soothing and harmonizing effect on the body. When consumed according to the recommended dose, Ashwagandha Rasayana can help the body rejuvenate the reproductive organs and help in revitalizing action on the nerves and the bone marrow. The rasayana can be consumed as a food supplement, if it is recommended by an Ayurvedic practitioner. Vacha Rasayana Prepared by mixing herbs and spices in a base of honey, clarified butter and rice syrup, Vacha Rasayana is a herbal supplement, which provides mental harmony and peace of mind. It is beneficial for enhancing the pranic energy. People suffering from headache will find consuming the rasayana as beneficial. It also reduces anxiety and dizziness. It is believed that spasms, cramps, tremors and even drug addiction can be cured by Vacha Rasayana. Shilajit Rasayana Consumption of Shilajit Rasayana can be beneficial for the pancreas. The herbal supplement improves digestion and ensures better metabolism. It can be consumed to reduce fatigue as well. It ensures good pancreas and spleen health and helps purify blood. People looking for weight loss remedies can find

the rasayana effective. The key ingredient of Shilajit Rasayana is shilajit, a 'wonder mineral' obtained from the rocks in the lower Himalayas. Brahmi Rasayana Brahmi Rasayana is an Ayurvedic herbal supplement that concentrates at reducing stress levels, anger, depression, restlessness and impatience. The regular consumption of Brahmi Rasayana (as per the recommended dose) can help one acquire more concentration and intelligence. The rasayana is believed to reduce psychic disturbances. Drug addiction can be controlled by consuming the rasayana, largely. It is also beneficial for increasing Haemoglobin. Guduchi Rasayana It is believed that the consumption of Guduchi Rasayana on a regular basis (as per the recommended dose) can help enhance the body's immune system. In addition to this, the rasayana improves blood circulation and helps the purification of blood. One can stay away from common cold and various kinds of allergies, by consuming Guduchi Rasayana. It is believed that the rasayana can also be used to treat acne. It ensures better metabolism and digestion.

The traditional Ayurvedic Rasayanas are formulated to serve as vitalizers or rejuvenators. They are prepared by combining different herbs, spices, clarified butter and honey. The Rasayanas are usually prescribed by Ayurvedic practitioners, depending upon the age and health requirements of the person consuming it. Among the Ayurvedic Rasayanas (vitalizers), Pippali Rasayana is the one of the most popular medicines. Traditionally, it consists of Piper longum and Butea monosperma (palash). It is one of the highly prized herbal medicines in Ayurveda. Read on to know more about Pippali Rasayana.

The Key Ingredient - Pippali Pippali (Piper longum) is called the Indian long pepper, sometimes, also referred to as 'Javanese'. Primarily cultivated for its fruit, the long pepper is dried and used as a spice and seasoning. It is similar to black pepper in terms of taste. Pippali is beneficial for cold and cough related diseases. It is often combined with ginger and black pepper to form the famous Trikatu (Three Spices). The key ingredient of Pippali Rasayana, pippali is beneficial for health in a number of ways. A number of health benefits of long pepper are found in Pippali Rasayana as well. Benefits Of Pippali Rasayana According to the studies in Ayurveda, pippali is one of the most powerful Rasayana herbs, formulated to serve as a longevity enhancer. Pippali Rasayana is considered pivotal for the purification process in the body, because it cleans the shrotas that transport nutrients and help in the removal of wastes from the body. It is beneficial in enhancing digestion, assimilation and metabolism of food. The herbal medicine soothes the nerves in order to improve the quality of sleep at night. Pippali rasayana has traditionally been used in the treatment of chronic dysentery and worm infestations. The consumption of Pippali Rasayana, on a regular basis, provides great relief from cough and throat infections. It can cure hiccups, and improve the quality of sleep during night. The rasayana can be used to treat irregular fever, assimilation disorder, piles and anemia.

The medicine provides better circulation of blood and enhances the immune system. People suffering from nausea and congestion can find the consumption of Pippali Rasayana as beneficial. The rasayana improves lung health. It helps in detoxifying lung and kidney and cleaning the lymph glands.

The treatment done for the rejuvenation of body and soul is termed as Rasayana therapy (rejuvenation therapy) in the Ayurvedic text books. The therapy is aimed to promote good health and helps a great deal in increasing the longevity of life. It can cure many diseases that are otherwise hard to find treatment for. Rejuvenation therapy enhances the energy and the person's mental and physical capabilities. A number of studies suggest that rejuvenation therapy is effective in improving the skin complexion, texture, in modulating the voice and in increasing the sensing capacity of the sense organs. Read on to know more about rejuvenation therapy.

Special drugs - the Rasayana - are administered for rejuvenation therapy. The practitioner might prescribe Rasayanas, according to the specific needs of the patient. One of the most common Rasayana is Chyavanaprasha. It is believed by acquiring the treatment, one comes closer to the spiritual aspects of life and helps the society, the sick, the hungry, the poor and the disabled, which brings out another attribute of rejuvenation therapy - it tranquillizes the human mind, thereby making it healthy. Moreover, the therapy prevents the process of ageing and makes an individual free from any disease during an old age. Two Different Forms Of Rasayana Therapy i. Kutipravesika While acquiring the treatment of kutipravesika, the person has to stay indoors. In the meantime, he/she consumes the rasayana, as prescribed by the Ayurvedic practitioner. To perform kutipravesika, elaborate arrangements are done. A special type of cottage is constructed for the purpose, wherein the individual is treated. The person follows a prescribed diet, strictly, while undergoing kutipravesika. Before taking this form of rejuvenation therapy, the person has to undergo Panchkarma therapy (detoxification of body). ii. Vatatapika While performing the vatatapika method of rejuvenation therapy, the person is given different types of Ayurvedic herbal preparations, as prescribed by the practitioner. This treatment is especially suitable for those, who cannot stay at an Ayurvedic clinic for a long time. This treatment suggests that the person should take the medicines at dawn on an empty stomach. Vatatapika can be opted for even without undergoing the Panchakarma therapy. Benefits Of Rejuvenation Therapy The benefits of rejuvenation therapy are manifold. It improves the overall health of the person undergoing the treatment. Apart from promoting good health, it is beneficial to increase the

concentration and memory power. The skin looks youthful and radiates its natural glow, after the person undergoes the rejuvenation therapy. It brings calmness and de-stresses the mind, relieving it from anxiety, depression and stress related problems. A higher resistance to diseases is built into the body, when the person opts for rejuvenation therapy. Optimum strength of the body is assured by the Rasayana therapy.

Triphala, the well-known traditional Ayurvedic formulation, makes an excellent skin tonic. It is one of the most popular Ayurvedic medicinal herbs, prescribed by a number of Ayurvedic practitioners. Triphala literally means 'three fruits'. The three fruits contained in Triphala are Amalaki (Indian Gooseberry), Haritaki (Indian Gallnut or Terminalia chebula), and Bibhitaki (Beleric Myrobalan or Terminalia bellerica). Since Triphala is tridoshic - equally balancing for Vata, Pitta and Kapha - it is beneficial for all skin types. Triphala nourishes the skin, both directly and indirectly. Amla (Indian gooseberry), one of the three ingredients in Triphala, is the richest known natural source of Vitamin C. Apart from the rich source of Vitamin C, Triphala also contains calcium - an important nutrient that helps enhance skin clarity and brings dull, tired skin to life.

Preparation Of Triphala Rasayana Triphala Rasayana is usually prepared by mixing triphala with equal quantity of madhuka (mahua tree), tavakshir (East Indian arrowroot) pippali (long pepper), saindhava (long salt), and each one of the loha (iron), suvarna (gold), vacha (Acorus calamus) with either honey, ghee or sugar, in equal quantity. Benefits Of Triphala Triphala Rasayana is beneficial is promoting ojas, the finest product of digestion that prevents the occurrence of many diseases, creates luster and make the skin exude its natural glow and radiance. It nourishes both the body and the mind, thereby promoting longevity of life. Therefore, Triphala Rasayana is very much beneficial for adults and children alike. The Rasayana is especially beneficial for eyes. In case one has problems in eye sight, opting for Triphala Rasayana would be the best bet. The Rasayana creates a balance in the cholesterol level, by removing ama from the fat tissue. It helps in the purification of urinary tract, thereby helping the prevention of urinary tract diseases. It also strengthens and cleanses the liver, which is one of its main functions. This ensures that the liver, one of the important parts of the body, stays healthy. It can also be said that the consumption of Rasayana prevents diseases related to the functioning of liver. The medicine also helps the management of weight. Thus, it is beneficial for people, who want to loose weight.

It enhances the thirteen agnis (digestive fires), especially the main digestive fire in the stomach. Triphala Rasayana is helpful in pacifying Kapha and Pitta. If taken on a regular basis, the Rasayana can be a powerful anti-aging medicine. People suffering from skin inflammation, heat, infection, obesity will find the consumption of Triphala Rasayana as beneficial. Diseases such as fatigue and anemia can be effectively cured by the regular consumption of Triphala Rasayana, if taken according to the prescribed doses.


The science of Ayurveda is a unique holistic system, based on the interaction of body, mind and spirit. The treatment of Ayurveda is based on Indian herbs, which have a healing energy. Herbs have a unique flavor and intoxicating aroma, which contribute to their medicinal quality. The science of life - Ayurveda - has focused on the use of herbs as to lead a healthy life, free of diseases. Specific emphasis is given on the preparation and storage of herbs, followed since the ancient period, when Indian sages used herbs for curing a number of diseases. The herbs used in Ayurvedic are different from each other, in terms of a number of factors. A number of herbs vary according to their taste, while others are categorized according to their medicinal value. There are mainly three different categories of herbs: mild, strong and toxic. Herbalists mainly use mild herbs, because they have nutritive, energetic and therapeutic values without causing reactions or toxic effects. Use of herbs is regarded as the friendly way of treatment, because very less or no side effects are associated with them. Today, Ayurveda and its herbal treatment flourishes side by side with Homeopathic, Unani Tibb and Western conventional medicine and is actively encouraged as an inexpensive alternative to drugs. Ayurvedic herbal treatment is one of the most natural ways of curing a disease, as it has no side effects and after-treatment complications. That's why it is regarded as the most safest and inexpensive healing. In this section, we have given detailed description of the medicinal and herbal properties of Ayurvedic herbs.


A number of herbs are used as medicines in Ayurveda - the science of life. Since ages, herbs have been known to help relieve aches and inflammation. The Ayurvedic rishis in the ancient times used herbs and mixed them with other herbs to create medicines that could treat many deadly diseases. Some of them proved to be elixirs. The herbs used in Ayurveda have diverse chemical formation. They are effective in combating diseases, when taken according to the recommended doses. They produce very few or no side effects. Some herbs are used as general tonic to clean, nourish and rebuild on a cellular level, while others have affinity for a specific system or organ of the body. Know the effects of herbs in Ayurveda and their usage, in the following lines. Benefits of Ayurvedic Herbs Herbs in Ayurveda help a great deal in proper absorption and digestion of food. They also help as an appetizer. Herbs can be used as preventive medicines as well. Sometimes, they are also used to strengthen the immune system. Apart from strengthening the immune system, the herbs can also give a boost to the system.

In case a person is attacked by flu, viruses or suffering from any kind of bacterial infection, then the Ayurvedic practitioners usually prescribe herbs that are mixed with other herbs or consumed individually, to cure such conditions. Studies in medicinal science suggest that Ayurvedic herbs can also treat deadly diseases like cancer, AIDS and autoimmune disorders. It is also found that herbal treatment is an effective alternative to allopathic medicines. When a person is undergoing treatment for some chronic diseases, Ayurvedic herbs can provide nourishment and support to the body. How To Use Herbs Internal Usage Some of the most common internal forms of herbal medications include encapsulated herbs, fresh herbs, flower essences and essential oil dilutions. The effects of herbs can differ, depending upon the media of ingestion. For instance, certain herbs are more desirable to be ingested, if their medicinal properties are intended to affect the important internal organs of the body, such as the heart, lungs, liver, kidney etc. The herbs used to cure internal organs of the body are ingested using different media, which may include water, honey, oil, ghee and milk. Different media have their own unique effects on the body of the person consuming them. External Application The external applications of herbs are intended to treat symptoms on or near the surface of the body, such as the skin. Herbs taken externally are often in the form of essential oil blends, liniments, ointments, lotions, massage oils, pastes or body wraps. Joint problems, dizziness, muscular problems, wounds, cuts and other skin diseases can be effectively cured by the external herbal treatment. Application of the herbs on the skin is the common way to treat such problems.


Ayurveda is the ancient science of life, which aims to promote a healthy lifestyle, free of diseases. The Ayurvedic rishis in the ancient times have discovered the medicinal use of many herbs, which are effective in curing a number of diseases that are otherwise difficult to get rid of. The herbs have been in use since the ancient times, when people were not familiar with allopath and other forms of treatment and resorted to the herbs and Ayurvedic medicines that were available. The Ayurvedic herbs can be classified into five types: according to origin, according to habitat, according to various actions, according to action on doshas and according to their use. In this article, we have discusses about the different kinds of Ayurvedic herbs. Different Kinds Of Herbs In Ayurveda Classifications As Per Origin Dravyas are constituted by panchamahabhootas (five elements). A dravya is said to be of a particular mahabhoota if it forms a major constituent of the dravya. There are five types of dravyas: Parthiv Apaya Taijas Vayaveeya Akasheeya Classification As Per Habitat, Family, Morphology and Life Span Of Herbs (Dravya) Sthalaj - Plant and trees that grow on land, e.g. Haritaki, Amalki etc Jalaj (Aquatic) - Plants that grow in water, e.g. Lotus, Spyrogyra. Vruksharuha (Epiphytic, living on the surface of trees) - Plants that grow on other trees but do not depend on that tree for their nutrition, e.g. Rasana. Vrukshadan (Parasitic) - Plant that dwells on another tree and obtains its nutrition from its host. Classification As Per The Action On Doshas

Shaman - Dravyas, which equate the vitiated dosha without purifying the doshas or disturbing the equilibrium Kopan - Dravyas, which vitiate the doshas in equilibrium Swasthahita - Dravyas which have a tendency to increase or decrease vatadi doshas but do not produce vitiation of these doshas in a healthy person. Classification As Per The Use Of Herbs Aushadh dravya (drugs) Ahar dravya (diet) .


Ayurveda is the traditional medicinal form, prevalent in India since 2000 B.C. The Ayurvedic treatment is entirely based on herbs, which have certain medicinal value or property. In the ancient times, the Indian sages believed that Ayurvedic herbs are one-stop solutions to cure a number of health related problems and diseases. They conducted thorough study about the same, experimented with herbs to arrive at accurate conclusions about the efficacy of different plants and herbs that have medical value. Most of the Ayurvedic herbs, thus formulated, are free of side effects or reactions. This is the reason why Ayurveda is growing in popularity across the globe. The Ayurvedic herbs that have medicinal quality provide rational means for the treatment of many internal diseases, which are otherwise considered incurable in other systems of medicine. Go through the following lines to learn all about the importance of herbs in order to lead a healthy, peaceful and disease-free life. Importance Of Herbs in Ayurveda Many herbs are used to alter or change a long-standing condition by eliminating the metabolic toxins. Also known as 'blood cleansers', certain herbs improve the immunity of the person, thereby reducing conditions such as fever. Herbs such as ginseng, aloe, sandalwood, red clover, burdock, bayberry, black pepper, cinnamon, myrrh, and safflower are known for their alterative property, which are used to heal wounds, sores and boils as well. In order to neutralize the acid produced by the stomach, herbs such as marshmallow root and leaf are used. They serve as antacids. The healthy gastric acid needed for proper digestion is retained by such herbs. Antibiotic herbs like turmeric are useful in inhibiting the growth of germs, harmful microbes and bacteria. Turmeric is widely used as a home remedy to heal wounds and cut. To reduce fever and the production of heat caused by the condition, certain antipyretic herbs such as black pepper, sandalwood, safflower and brihati are recommended by Ayurvedic practitioners. An important medical property of herbs is to serve as antiseptic. Aloe, sandalwood, turmeric, chitrak and gokshura are commonly used antiseptic herbs that are high in their medicinal value. Since ages, Indian sages have been using antivenomous herbs, which act against poisonous matter from animals such as snake. Certain aromatic herbs like cardamom and coriander are renowned for their appetizing qualities. Other aromatic herbs such as cloves, peppermint and turmeric add a pleasant aroma to the food, thereby increasing the taste of the meal. They serve as digestives and condiments for the food as well. Apart from being aromatic, sandalwood and cinnamon are also great astringents. Sandalwood is especially used in arresting the discharge of blood, mucus etc. Certain aromatic plants such as aloe, barberry, golden seal and chirayat are used as mild tonic. The bitter taste of such plants reduces toxins in blood. They are helpful in destroying infection as well.

Ayurvedic practitioners recommend calmative herbs, which provide a soothing effect to the body. They are often used as sedatives. Herbs such as Chamomile, chrysanthemum, coriander, fennel, peppermint, and spearmint, ajwan, basil, calamus, cardamom, cinnamon, ginger, and turmeric are helpful in promoting good blood circulation. Therefore, they are used as cardiac stimulants. Certain herbs have disinfectant property, which destroys disease causing germs. They also inhibit the growth of pathogenic microbes that cause communicable diseases. Arka, gudachi and katuka are the examples of disinfectant herbs. Certain cough syrup ingredients like ginger and cloves are known for their expectorant property, which promotes the thinning and ejection of mucus from the lungs, trachea and bronchi. Cardamom, eucalyptus, wild cherry and cloves are also expectorants. In order to increase the activity of a system or an organ, certain herbs like camphor, cayenne, myrrh, guggul and gotu kola are used as stimulants. Herbs serve as tonic. A wide variety of herbs including guduchi, katuka, golden seal, aloe, barberry and bala are used as tonics or chief ingredients of a tonic. They can also be nutritive and rejuvenative. Honey, turmeric, marshmallow and licorice can effectively treat a fresh cut and wound. They are termed as vulnerary herbs.


Ayurbveda is a vast and ancient medicine science. The basic principle of Ayurvedic treatment is to cure the causative element of the disease from its root instead of suppressing its symptoms. The Ayurvedic treatment is largely based on the natural elements and herbs. All the Ayurvedic medicines are prepared by using these herbs in prescribed quantities. The properties of herbs and effects of the doshas are taken into account in designing the Ayurvedic herb formulas. So it is important to know the details of the herbal properties so that it can apply for a specific treatment area. Ayurvedic herbs are categorized according to their herbal properties and functions. Each herb has its own property and thus used for specific disease and its treatment. Some of these herbs are very rare and thus very expensive. It is important for the Ayurvedic practitioner to know, which herb is to be used for a particular disease so that by analyzing the symptoms and constitution of the patient, one can determine the prevalence of each of the physical manifestations of the doshas (and the degree of influence exerted by the non-material aspects of each of the doshas), and selects herbs or prepared herbal formulas to harmonize the influences and correct the physical imbalances, based on the characteristics of the herbal materials. A single herb may have multiple properties and one specific property may be present in many herbs. Classification of Herbs Based on their characters they are classified into three main groups. The three of them are used for different kind of ailments specified below: Vaisheik Gunas Herbs related to the sensory organ Samanya Gunas Herbs related to general ailments Atma Gunas - Herbs related to the soul Properties of Herbs in Ayurveda It would be amazing for you know that the taste of the herb says much about the properties of the herb. Given here are the effects of each of the taste groups: Sweet: It improves the complexion, strengthens the body, heals wounds and ulcers, and purifies the rasa and the blood. Sour: Carminative, digestive and accumulates secretive impurities (waste material that is secreted) in the tissues to aid elimination. Salty : Purifies tissues, digestive, relaxing, separates impurities, accumulates excretions in the system, causes the body to lose tone (relaxes it), clears the outlets of the system, produces softness of all the structures of the body

Pungent: Increases digestive power, purifies the body, prevents obesity, causes relaxation of the ligaments and of the system in general; diminishes formation of milk, semen, and fat Bitter : Separates the doshas, appetizing, digestive, and purifying, improves secretion of breast milk, and reduces the quantity of feces, urine, perspiration, fat, marrow, and pus Astringent: Heals ulcers, checks all discharges, separates impurities from tissues, and reduces obesity and excessive moisture.


Ayurveda, the science of life, is a traditional system of medicine. Ashtang Ayurveda deals with eight branches of Ayurvedic treatment. Prasutitantra, that is the obstetrics and gynecology section, forms one of the main branches of Ayurveda. It is believed that the Ayurvedic methods or practices, if followed during pregnancy, will lead to a complication-free delivery. Ayurveda also states the ideal guidelines to be followed during pregnancy and the most appropriate time of conceiving a baby. It has suggested a very good protocol for that, which is called garbhini paricharya. Garbhini paricharya has given a detailed description of ahar (nutrition), vihar (life style) and vichar (thought process) to be followed by a women during pregnancy. According to Ayurveda, the nutrition, lifestyle and thought process of the pregnant woman directly affect the development of the fetus. Apart from the specific emphasis on the three factors, the medications to be followed during the time of pregnancy are also given in some Ayurvedic texts. Peadiatrics is another important branch in Ayurveda, which focuses on the care that needs to be taken after the birth of the baby. Information on what to feed and the right way of feeding the baby is also provided in Ayurveda. In our related section, apart from pregnancy, fetal development and parenthood, the symptoms and remedies of menopause are also discussed.

Pregnancy brings an enormous change to a woman's life. It brings in happiness to the motherto-be and leaves her with personifications about what her child would be like, from the day one after she breaks the 'good news'. The development of the fetus brings in changes in her physical and mental health, in a number of ways. While carrying the child in her womb, she needs to learn many things regarding pregnancy. In Ayurveda, foetal development is described comprehensively. Health problems pertaining to the mother and the growing womb as well as dietary recommendations find prominent place in a number of texts of Ayurveda. In the following lines, we have discussed about fetal development.

Fetal Development In Ayurveda According to Ayurveda, the gradual and proper development of foetus is most important for the child's health. The development of foetus depends totally on mother's health. During the crucial stages of foetal development, it is said that a woman needs to have a sound mind and be in good physical condition. Everything a mother experiences - whether it is pleasant thought or a negative one, the fetal development is directly affected by her. The recurring anxieties of the mother about pregnancy are unknowingly passed onto the unborn child. One should never underestimate the power of transferring these emotions into the make-up of the unborn child. As per Ayurveda, the pregnant women should indulge herself in gentle leisure activities for relaxation and calmness, in order to impart stability to the unborn child, both at the physical and mental level. She should avoid situations that create anger and frustration, circumstances that provoke unnecessary stress and tension in the body. The science of life also suggests that pregnant women should avoid habits, which are not beneficial for her health, because such habits directly affect the growth of the child. The growing fetus gets all the nutrition from the umbilical cord connected to it, which in turn is attached to the rasvaha nadi (maternal part of the placenta) of the mother. This way, the nutrition is indirectly supplied to the fetus. From the time of conception until the zygote is attached to uterus, the nutrition depends on the nutritive parts carried by sperms and ovum. Charaka, one of the renowned Ayurvedic texts, says that the fetus obtains its nourishment from rasa that is supplied by mother. The nourishment of the fetus depends upon all the six factors of conception, use of appropriate diet and lifestyle of the pregnant woman. Ayurvedic practitioners prescribe herbal concoction of three to four herbs, for the mother, to consume in every month of pregnancy. The combination of the herbs is different for different month and may depend upon the physical health of the pregnant woman as well. The herbs are generally prescribed for the physical and mental development of the fetus as well as to ensure good health of the mother-to-be. One of the most common herbal medicines is Sida retusa, which serves as a single drug recommended throughout pregnancy. While consuming any such drug, it is suggested to take advice of an authorized Ayurvedic practitioner.

Right from her period of adolescence, a woman undergoes a number of changes, both physically and mentally. One of the natural transitions experienced by every woman, who has attained the menstrual cycle, is menopause. Menopause is defined as the culmination of woman's monthly menstrual periods and ovulation. The natural transition brings in a number of changes in the hormonal composition of the women, as well as triggers symptoms related to the physical change. Her body starts producing lesser amounts of the hormones - estrogen and progesterone (among others). Go through the following lines to know what menopause is, according to Ayurveda. Menopause in Ayurveda Ayurveda says that menopause is not a disease, but a natural transition in women that occurs at the age of 45-55 years. In Ayurveda, the transition is often associated with the process of aging in women. Since aging is a 'Vata' predominant stage of life, the symptoms of menopause experienced by some women are often similar to the symptoms, when the Vata dosha rises and upsets the normal balance of the body. Typically, there are three types of menopause - vata dominated menopause, pitta dominated

menopause and kapha dominated menopause. Common Symptoms Of Menopause Anemia Burning and increased frequency of micturation Excessive hair fall Feeling of intense heat in the body on some occasions Irregular menstrual periods with excessive or scanty bleeding Irritable nature Joint pain Oedema Profuse sweating at night Sleeplessness Vaginal dryness and itching Weakness Effects Each type of menopause has different symptoms. For instance, the Vata-type menopausal symptoms include depression, anxiety and insomnia. On the other hand, women with Pitta-type symptoms are often angry and suffer hot flashes. Kapha type menopause symptoms include listlessness, weight gain and feelings of mental and physical heaviness. The type of treatment depends upon the dosha in which the woman's menopausal symptoms are manifesting. This suggests that each type of menopause needs different treatments to be administered. However, there still exist some common symptoms of menopause, which are experienced by women. Ayurvedic Remedies Most of the women are unaware of the right kind of treatment, diet, nutritional supplements and exercise, which should be done during menopause. With proper guidance and simple lifestyle changes, they can easily avoid most of the unpleasant side effects of menopause, to a great extent. Various Ayurvedic herbs can be used during the period, which can help a great deal in strengthening and rejuvenating the female reproductive system. In addition to this, the herbs prescribed for the same can regulate the hormones and calm the emotions. Some of the examples are Aloe gel, Shatavari, Saffron, Kapikacchu, and Ashwagandha. These herbs, if taken in milk decoctions, can relieve the symptoms of menopause.


According to many doctors, the post partum disorder is not a very serious problem and can be ignored. However, the present statistics reveals the fact that the number of postpartum depressed women are increasing in number in both developing and developed countries in the world. Lots of health problems, such endocrine disorders, excessive weight loss or gain, chronic reproductive problems and even arthritis, start to take seed in this postpartum time. After the baby is born, the mother and newborn are completely detached from daily affairs and chores for two to six weeks. The care given at this time enables a woman to serve her family and community from a deep developed internal resource. Postpartum Disorders & Ayurveda Ayurveda, the science of life, offers a detailed therapeutic routine as to how should family members care for a postpartum mother and the importance of such care. Ayurveda acknowledges that there three very important times in woman's life. The first one is marriage, which traditionally meant she left her home to live with her husband's family. The next most important time is the 42 days after childbirth, and the last one is menopause. The 42-day after child birth is a very crucial period. If she is carefully nurtured, she and the baby would benefit by avoiding most common health disorders associated around this time such as colic or other digestive problems, insomnia, irritability or baby fussiness and postpartum depression. With proper care, a mother would also deepen and gain the mental, emotional, and spiritual resources needed to carry her though all the demands of family life, without feeling depleted.

Ayurveda has perfect remedy for the postpartum disorders. Remember, there is no single cause for post partum problems. Many factors play a role including genetics, environment, medical conditions, life events, and certain thinking patterns that affect a person's reaction to events. In the following lines, we have listed effective ayuvedic postpartum healing tips, to help you make the new mother and bay feel special, loved and cared for. Ayuvedic Postpartum Healing Tips Encourage mothers to do as little as possible for 42 days (or as long as she can). This would mean avoiding all housework and driving around. Even limit guest visits in number and time they stay. Keeping visits to fifteen minutes is good. Create a food tree of friends and nearby family, who are willing to bring mom yummy and easy to digest foods everyday. Listing some easy to do tasks such as laundry or cleaning of the dishes would be a good way of getting the tasks done, at minimal efforts. Ayurveda emphasizes mainly on the proper diet regime during this time, to ensure the health of both baby and mother. Foods need to be fresh, not processed, served warmed, very soupy and moist in consistency. Make sure that the dishes prepared include digestive spices, such as cumin, caraway, ginger, mustard seed, clove, basil, turmeric, fenugreek, cinnamon and garlic (roasted only). Avoid eating meat for at least two weeks. Soup stocks are okay. Do not binge on caffeine, white sugar, raw vegetables' dry, crunchy foods, too many beans (including tofu) and too many eggs. Make sure mother and baby are warm, oily, and feeling loved. This would mean that a person should be appointed to massage the twosome with sesame oil, daily. Use lots of sesame oil, olive oil or ghee internally. The best bet would be to let the mother and child stay warm indoors. Most importantly, assure mom that it is okay for her to take this time to receive so much love and support, no matter how awkward it may feel for her. Make her feel special, loved and care.

Ayurveda describes the general management of pregnancy under Garbhini Vyakaran. Apart from listing the basic rules for diet, activities, behavior and mental activity (ahar, vihar, achar and vichar respectively), it also discusses the diseases in pregnancy and their treatment and so on. Special care needs to be taken during the time of pregnancy. According to Ayurveda there are four stages of labor - Prajayini (First Stage), Upasthita Prasava (Second Stage), Prajayi Syamana (Third Stage) and Apara Patana (Fourth Stage). From the moment the pregnancy is confirmed, the woman is advised to follow certain rules and guidelines.

The development of the foetus in the uterus is described under Garbhavakranti, and special regimens are prescribed for each month under Garbhini Paricharya. The general rule is to take greater care during the first three months of pregnancy and after the completion of the seventh month. Any disease occurring in a pregnant woman should be treated with drugs that are mild in action, compatible and safe to the foetus. Panchakarma (detoxifying procedures) should not be advocated, except basti (enema) and pichu (tampon) in the eighth and ninth months of pregnancy. In ayurveda, it is believed that when a woman is in her last stage of pregnancy, one of her feet is considered to be in this world and the other in the world of Yama (the god of death). Until the placenta is delivered, the delivery of the child is not considered complete. According to ayurveda, in case the woman undergoes a surgerical delivery, she is likely to be affected by one or more of the 64 ailments listed in the Garbhini Vyakaran. So, the best bet would be to follow all the strict regimens for not only to deliver healthy, physically strong, radiant and well nourished baby, but also for you to remain healthy.

Garbhopadravas (Common Diseases During Pregnancy) Ayurveda also describes certain diseases, which are caused because of the pregnant status of the woman. These diseases are peculiar to pregnancy and are called garbhopadravas. They are - nausea, anorexia, vomiting, fever, oedema, anaemia, diarrhoea and retention of urine. Each of the diseases has their specific treatments mentioned elaborately in Ayurveda. Pregnancy Care In Ayurveda Do's It is very important for the mom-to-be to be in a cheerful and happy mood always. Every day wear neat and clean clothes. Being well dressed goes a long way in deciding your mood for the day. Instead of putting complicated designer wears, go for simple clothes. Lastly, sleep under a roof in a clean environment. Don'ts Excessive sex in the early or late stages of pregnancy. Do not overeat or fast. Sleep pattern followed should be a normal one, i.e. sleep at night and stay awake during day time. Tight clothes and belts are strict no-no. Do not watch anything on TV or read a book that revolves around feelings of sorrow, anger, horror or agony. Though traveling is permitted, but if its a rough road, try to avoid. Sitting on a hard surface for a long time is not beneficial. Bending or lifting heavy objects is objectionable during pregnancy. Avoid alcohol and do not binge on dry or stale meat. Beholding natural urges, unless in an emergency, is wrong and should not be done.


Ayurveda represents the ancient Indian art of healing. In it, the human body is not considered just as a mass of organs, systems and tissues; but the complex mechanism' of myriad functions taking place, both at physical and mental level, are evaluated and described. In existence for thousands of years now, the basic principle of Ayurveda has managed to remain the same. The human body is more complex than any other form of life as on date. Purusha - the human body is the aggregate of 25 elements, together with Atma - the spirit or soul. In order to explain the functional complexity of human body, Ayurveda has propounded a few basic doctrines. These doctrines visualize the functional units of the body to be formed by three Dosha (humours), seven Dhatu (tissues) and Mala (metabolic end products) which are in equilibrium. All ayurvedic studies conducted on herbal and holistic medicine, in ancient India, were followed from the fountainhead of the two principle Ayurvedic schools. The School of Physicians (Atreya) and the School of Surgeons (Dhanvantari) epitomized the eight main areas of Ayurvedic studies and specialization, during ancient times. The details of these eight branches of this natural alternative medicine are present in the three ancient Ayurvedic texts - Charaka Samhita, Susruta Samhita and Astanga Hridaya. One of the most important principles of Ayurveda treatment is that the treatment given is not only to the ailments or the affected parts, but to the person as a whole. This creates an environment for purifying your body naturally, which eliminates all toxic imbalances from your body, enabling you to regain natural resistance from diseases and attain good health. In this section, we deal with the different principles of Ayurveda.

Bhaisajya Kalpana is one of the most important branches in ayurveda, which deals with awareness of drugs, including identification, procurement, processing, preparation and application. The term Bhaisajya Kalpana consist of two words -Bhaishajya stands for 'medicine' and Kalpana means 'forms'. Hence this branch, which deals with the various forms of medicine, such as syrups, juice, tablet, powder, etc, is named as Bhaisajya Kalpana.

In actuality, no branch of Ayurveda can exist singularly, without the assistance of aousadhas or Bhaisaj. In Ayurveda, the greatest importance is given to the Bhesaja because to treat the disease successfully, a physician should have good quality of drugs and for that, he should have the complete knowledge about Bhesaja. Bhaisjasya Kalpana includes complete knowledge of drugs including the basic principles of drugs. It has described various procedures like addition or depletion of certain drugs, by keeping the drugs with certain Bhavana dravyas for specific times. If the physician has a good knowledge of Bhaisjasya Kalpana, he can treat the patient in a better manner. Importance of Bhaijasya Kalpana It increases the potency of medicine by sanskar i.e. vishesh gunantardhana (adding or generating special property) It makes the medicine durable It makes the medicine palatable. It removes the toxic effect of medicine by shodhana karm. As per the severity of the disease it helps the adjustment of dosha It makes the medicine as per need of patient and disease.

Ayurveda, states that the basic constitution of a human being is determined at the time of conception. This constitution is called Prakruti. The term Prakruti is derived from Sanskrit word that means, 'nature', 'creativity' or the first creation'. Prakruti is the physical and psychological constitution of the individual, which is determined on the basis of three doshas. One of the very important concepts of Ayurveda is that one's basic constitution is fixed throughout his lifetime. Talking about the constitution of a person, there are three basic types - Vata constitution, Pitta constitution and Kapha constitution and their combinations.

Importance of Prakruti Knowing our prakruti is helpful as it not only helps us know our self better but also helps us in getting rid of diseases. It helps in understanding certain important physical and mental characteristics. Prakruti is an important decisive factor for evaluating an individual's status of physical constitution as well. In the following lines, we have provided detailed information about the factors determining prakrati, the seven body types and the characteristics of VATA, PITTA and KAPHA. Factors Determining Prakruti Sukra-Shonit Prakruti (Condition of sperm-ovum) Kala-garbhasaya Prakruti (Condition of uterus) Matu-ahar Prakruti (Food regimen adopted by mother, during pregnancy) Types of Prakruti Basically, according to Ayurveda, there are seven body types. Every individual has a unique combination of these three doshas. Mono types (vata, pitta or kapha predominant)

Dual types (vata-pitta, pitta-kapha or, kapha-vata) Equal types (vata, pitta and kapha in equal proportions) Characteristics Of Body Types : i. VATA Physical Quotient Such people are either very tall or very short, with a non- muscular build. They have thin and bony limbs and a quick gait. The neck is thin and scrawny, with generally thin, darkish and cool skin type. Facial Quotient They usually have a long and angular face, with an underdeveloped chin. While the nose is small and narrow, the eyes are small, narrow or sunken, dark brown or grey in color, with dull luster. They have a small mouth, with thin, narrow or tight lips. Teeth are usually irregular, protruding, or broken, set in receding gums. Mental Quotient People under this body type are creative and artistic and tend to overindulge in pleasures. They are restless and have weak memories. Enthusiasm, freedom, generosity, joy and vitality define the characteristic of such individuals. They are spendthrift, but have a tendency to spend money on trifle things. ii. PITTA Physical Quotient - People under this body type have a well developed build and often boast of muscular limbs and a stable gait of medium speed. They usually have a fair skin type that is soft, warm and lustrous. The neck is proportionate to the body. Facial Quotient Such individuals usually have a heart shaped face, with a protruding or pointed chin. They have pointed nose that is medium sized and average sized eyes, in light blue, light grey or hazel color. The lips and mouth are moderate in size. There is a yellowish tint in the teeth.

Mental Quotient Individuals, in this body type, are usually alert and attentive and have high concentration powers. Ambitious and confident, courage and enthusiasm oozes out of such individuals. With a developed sense of responsibility, they can take decisions and organize affairs well. On the other end, they may get irritable, jealous and aggressive by nature. iii. KAPHA Physical Quotient Boasting of a thick, well-developed build, such individuals have large, long limbs. They usually have a strong tree-trunk neck and thick, oily, pale or white skin. The average body temperature is generally cold. Facial Quotient Individuals in this body type usually have a large, rounded and full face with highly attractive eyes. The eyes are mostly in blue or light brown or black in color. They have a large mouth with full lips. Big and sparkling teeth are another feature you cannot miss when you are in the company of a KAPHA individual. Mental Quotient Such individuals are mostly calm and considerate and have an utmost caring and compassionate nature. Patient and faithful, individuals in this category have a sense of being nourished and portray stability, tenderness and contentment.

Historically, Rasa Shastra or 'Vedic Chemistry' is an offshoot of Ayurveda that was developed around the period, when Buddha existed, i.e. more than 2500 years ago. Derived from Sanskrit, RASA has several meaning attached to it - "Rasyate aaswadyate iti rasa" which stands for taste, "Rasati shariire aasu prsarati it Rasa" meaning juice, "Rasati aharahargachhati iti Rasa" that stands for the first material formed after digestion or liquids, under the transportation system of the body like plasma, chyle or lymph and "Rasanaat Sarva dhatuunam Rasaityabhdhiiyate" is for material which is capable

of lick and digest all metals. Rasa shastra essentially describes the use of metals, gems, minerals and poisons, to produce special formulations, which helps in combating acute conditions or serious diseases. More aptly, Rasashastra can be described as ayurvedic pharmaceutics, which deals with the drugs of mineral origin, their varieties, characteristics, processing techniques, properties and their therapeutic uses. There are two main categories of Rasa Shastra - Alchemy and Rasayana. While alchemy is involved in turning mercury into gold, Rasayana, on the other hand, helps in the rejuvenation of the mind and body. This science is often referred to as 'alchemy' and the resultant medications are called rasas, which mainly comprise of metallic ashes called bhasmas. These bhasmas, or lighter forms of metals, are contained in organo-metallic compounds that work as carriers (yogavahi). This means they are able to carry the herbs mixed with them faster to the desired site and start the action immediately. Bhasmas act as catalysts and increase the bioavailability of the herbs to the cell. After performing the desired action, bhasmsas are eliminated through our excretory systems, specifically via mutra and mala (urine and stool). Ayurvedic chemists have evolved various procedures like sublimation, oven treatment, controlled heat incineration, grinding, mixing, churning, and so on, to inculcate the therapeutic properties in the minerals, for which many specific types of yantras (instruments) are designed. When it comes to using any metal, mineral or a natural product directly or as a formulation, the alchemic scientists (Raja Siddhas) state that, barring a few exceptions, everything should be first purified/detoxified (Shodhana) and then must be converted into bhasma (ash). This is achieved by controlled/sustained heat incineration again and again. Mercury - Its Properties After classifying mercury as the rasa (after which this branch has been named), the ancient chemists classified the other metals, minerals and gems into dhatu, upadhatu, ratna, upratna, maharasa, uprasa, sadhrana rasa and sudha varga. Conventionally, mercury, when properly prepared, is known not only to balance all the three doshas, but also to impart a soothing effect to the body, give a firm physique, a stable mind and avert diseases and old age. Mercury nurtures the body parts and also enhances the strength of the eyes. It is used as vrisya (aphrodisiac), balya (tonic), snigdha (anointing), rasayana (rejuvenative), vrana sodhana and ropana (wound cleaner and healer), and krimighna (antimicrobial). Minerals - Their Properties As herbs have their own Rasa, in the same way, minerals also have their own Rasa. For instance, gold is madhura (sweet) and kasaya (astringent) in rasa, snigdha (oily) and laghu (light) in guna, sita (cold) in virya, and madhura (sweet) in vipak. It acts as an antimicrobial and antipyretic, improving body complexion and controlling the wastes of the body tissue. Talking about silver, it is kasaya (astringent) and amla (sour). Silver is known to give strength to the brain, heart and stomach. Speaking of Lapis lazuli, it produces feelings of well being while expelling all doshas from the body.

A special branch of the Ashtang Ayurvedic tree, Shalakya tantra encompasses the treatment for the diseases affecting the body parts located that are above the neck. This reveals that the branch of the science of life deals with the causes, diagnosis and curative procedures of the diseases pertaining to the head, ear, nose, eye, lips and throat. A number of methods are formulated for the treatment of the organs of the body, according to the shalakya tantra. In Sanskrit, the word shalaka means a rod or a probe. Therefore, by shalakya tantra, it is meant that the treatment would be done using rods or probes in order to apply medication to the affected parts of the body. Here in this article, we have discussed about shalakya tantra. Shalakya Tantra In Ayurveda Treatment of the eye using shalakas is termed as netra shalaka, whereas a probe of the ear is referred to as karma shalaka. Nasa shalaka and mukh shalaka are the names given to the treatment of nose and throat, respectively. Since the treatments are confined to the portion of the body above the neck, this branch of Ayurveda is often called 'urdhvanga chikitsa'. The Ayurvedic texts of Sushrut Sanhita, Charak Sanhita and Ashtang Hruday have given detailed description of shalakya tantra. According to the texts, there are about 72 diseases pertaining to the eyes, whereas the ears are prone to 25 different kinds of ailments. The nose can be affected by as many as 18 diseases, while the lips are easily

susceptible to 11 types of diseases. Shalakya tantra finds remedy for all such diseases. Apart from the various types of diseases, some surgical techniques are also described in the Ayurvedic texts, for the removal of tumors, abscesses and cysts. Different and effective ways to remove the foreign bodies from the regions above the neck are also enlisted in shalakya tantra. If you are suffering from certain common problems like excess deposit of wax in the ear, dryness of the eyes, throat infection, migraine, then the simple home remedies mentioned in shalakya tantra will prove useful. The home remedies have been widely used, tested and proven effective. Moreover, shalakya tantra is not only concerned with the immediate treatment of the ailments, but also with the follow-up treatment, in order to ensure that the disease is uprooted and eliminated. Therefore, shalakya tantra proves to be one of the most effective methods of treating the ailments related to the upper portion of the body, above the neck.


Ayurveda, a Sanskrit word comprises of two words, ayus, meaning 'life' and veda, meaning 'science', thus ayurveda in literal sense means the 'science of life'. It is a system of traditional medicine with its origin in the Indian subcontinent. It has been a popular and influential system of medicine in entire South Asia. The earliest literature of this traditional medicine system is said to have appeared during the Vedic period in India. The most influential of these Ayurveda literatures has been the Sushruta Samhita and the Charaka Samhita. Ayurveda is said to be a fully developed medicinal art with a number of unique and exclusive medicinal therapies and surgical procedures for the treatment of various ailments and diseases. Eight Branches Of Ayurveda Ayurveda, being a vast science is divided into eight branches, which are collectively called as Ashtang Ayurveda. Like any other modern medicinal therapies, Ayurveda believes in specialized treatment for different body parts. Thus, the medicinal art have been categorized under branches that deal with psychiatry, internal medicine, treatment of eyes, ears, nose, throat and head, toxicology and gerentorology separately. Ayurveda is the first ever medicine system to categorize pediatrics, aphrodisiacs and surgery as the branches of any medicinal science. List Of The Eight Branches Kayachikitsa -Internal Medicine Shalya chikitsa -Surgery Bala chikitsa- Pediatrics Graha chikitsa- Bhoot Vidya - Psychiatry Urdhvanga chikitsa-Treatment of eyes, ears, nose, throat and head Damstra chikitsa- Agad Tantra -Toxicology Jara chikitsa- Rasayana- Gerentorology Vrishya chikitsa- vajikarana- Aphrodisiacs


Ayurveda is oldest medical science known to mankind and mainly aims at healthy living and long life unlike other medical science which simply focus on the treatment of ailments and diseases. According to Ayurvedic science, there should be proper balance between the inner constituent elements of the body for a healthy existence. Apart from the rules and regulations of healthy existence, also deals with surgery and several complex ailments. Ayurvedic science is so elaborate and vast that it is divided into eight branches of Ayurveda and each branch is specialized in a particular treatment. One of these branches is the Agada Tantra. Branch Of Ayurveda Agada tantra or toxicology is a branch of Ashtang Ayurveda, which includes the science of poisons. The tradition of Agada tantra practice is very ancient. It originated from the school of toxicology, which was founded and run by Kashyapa, also known as Vriddhakashyapa, the great saint and medical practioner. The students of the Kashyapa School of toxicology later became royal vaidyas (doctors) in various kingdoms and were meant to protect the members of the royal families from being poisoned. They were at times also used to administer poison to their kings enemies. Even now the traditional practice of toxicology is done by different families of Vishavaidyas (poison doctors) who claim to be specialists in toxicology in various parts of Indian subcontinent. Damstra or Visha chikitsa, as the Aganda Tantra is popularly known, deals with various methods of cleaning the poisons out of the body as well as recommends antidotes for particular poisons. It deals with a wide range of natural toxins originating from wild lives like animals, birds, insects etc., plants including herbs (belladonna, aconite etc.), vegetables, minerals (leads, mercury, arsenal etc.) and artificial poisons prepared from poisonous drugs. This branch also deals with air and water pollution, which are basically the causes of various dangerous epidemics. There are two types of poisons that have been described in the Agada tantra- the Natural poisons and the Artificial poisons. The natural poisons are classified as inanimate (Sthaavara) and animate (Jangama). Inanimate poisons or the Staavara comprise of poisons that have plant origin and toxic minerals, metals or metal ores that are found inside the earth. Animate poisons or Jangama consist of the venoms of animals like snakes, scorpions, worms, insects etc. Artificial poisons are the invented poisons which are prepared by combining different kinds of animate and inanimate poisons. Apart from the above mentioned poisons, the three samhitas described about this branch of toxicology, also include the description and disadvantages of food of opposite qualities, drugs and food causing chronic poisoning symptoms. There are also descriptions of certain poisons that are used as medicines after proper processing and quantification, precious stones like diamond, ruby and poisonous minerals like lead and mercury are few of them. This branch of Ayurveda also has information regarding fatal doses of various poisons.

Ayurveda is a very elaborate and vast medicinal science. It deals with several kinds of complex ailments and surgeries. The science of Ayurveda is divided into eight different categories in order to clearly demarcate the treatment of one ailment from another. That is why the science of Ayurveda is often referred as Astang Ayurveda i.e. the life science with eight branches. The eight different branches of this traditional medicinal therapy are Kaaya chikitsaa, Graha Chikitsa, S`aalakya tantra, Agada tantra, Rasayan Tantra, Vajeekarana chikitsaa, S`alya tantra and Baala chikitsaa.

Bala Chikitsa is also known as Kumaraya Bhritya and it deals with the diagnosis and treatment of diseases related to Pregnancy, childbirth (delivery) and diseases of children (Pediatrics). The branch of kaumarabhritya is a comprehensive study about the prenatal, postnatal baby care as well as different ailments under the branch of gynecology. This branch of Ayurveda with an aim to achieve a healthy and disease free society, strives for well being of a kid right from its conception. The detailed explanation of the procedures and methods of Bal Chikitsa or Kaumara Bhritya can be found in the classical writings of Vagbhata, Ashtanga Samgraha and Ashtanga Hridaya. Even, the Charaka Samhita and Sushruta Samhita tell in detail about the Balachikitsa as well as prenatal, natural and post birth care tips. This branch is not only concerned about the physical health of mother and child rather it also deals with the mental and psychological requirements of a mother and her newly born child. Kaumarabhritya despite being an ancient science has documented that the mental and physical state of the mother has direct effect on the health of the child. It has recommended specific diet, routine, nourishment and conduct for women before, during and after delivery. It has been very clearly mentioned that the perfect health of a mother is mandatory for a healthy upbringing of child. This science of gynecology and pediatrics also describes the growth and progress of fetus in minute detail. It even consists of minute details of a technique called punsanvan vidhi for having a child of one's desired gender, intelligence and constitution. Kaumarbhritya as a science of pediatrics includes minute details of various disorders concerning children's health such as gastrointestinal diseases, teething disorder, rickets other than midwifery. It gives various natural and herbal remedies to the regular ailments of a newly born kid. It deals with the art of nursing and healthy bringing up of infants, purification and bettering of mothers' milk, any characteristic deficit traits as well as the influences of malignant stars and spirits on an infant. Apart from this, it also describes an ideal diet for a newly born to 16 years old kid. Other than gynecology and pediatrics, this branch of science also thoroughly deals with the problem of infertility, its causes and treatment methods.

3. Graha Chikitsa
Ayurveda is an ancient medicinal science. It originated in the Indian subcontinent about 5000 years ago and is considered to be one of the most advance medical therapies existing in the world till now. In contemporary times, it has also gained popularity in the western world and is considered to be a form of complementary and alternative medicine (CAM). It is divided into eight different branches that deal with eight different kinds of treatments. The eight different branches of the Ayurveda are the Kaaya chikitsaa, S`aalakya tantra, Agada tantra, Rasayan Tantra, Vajeekarana chikitsaa, S`alya tantra, Baala chikitsaa and Graha Chikitsa respectively. Out of these eight, the Graha Chikitsa is considered to be unique because it deals with psychiatric treatment.

Diseases Of The Mind Graha Chikitsa is mainly concerned with the diseases acquired or inherited from apparently unknown causes. This branch of Ayurveda specifically deals with the diseases of mind or psychic conditions, which can be caused by super natural forces or invasion of some evil spirit. Different experts have explained the word bhuta differently. Some experts say that bhuta means ghosts and similar bad spirits who cause abnormal psychological conditions. Others say bhuta represents microscopic organisms such as virus, bacteria that are not visible to naked eye. In modern terminology, it can be

considered as idiopathic diseases in which the exact cause of disease is unknown. The concept of Ayurveda also believes in the past karma or deeds as a causative factor of certain diseases. Bhuta Vidya deals with the causes, which are directly not visible and have no direct explanation in terms of tridosha. In most cases illness is caused by the disturbance of mind, where rajas (passion) and tamas (ignorance) are supposed to be the contributing factors. As the people of ancient era were believers of super natural powers and evil spirits, this branch of ayurveda was named the same. However, these days the problems and ailments dealt under the Graha Chikitsa or Bhut Vidya can be related to modern psychiatry. This branch of Ayurveda deals basically diseases like insanity, epilepsy. According to Ayurveda, these psychiatric diseases are a result of the affliction from the Deva, Asura, Gandharva, Yaksha, Rakshasa, Pitara, Pishacha, Naga and other demons or evil spirit. The exact patho- physiology of these disorders is to be extensively researched. Bhuta Vidya mentions the use of various disinfectant plants under the title of 'graha vidya dravya' for fumigation to make the atmosphere germ free. In addition to this herbs, diet, use of mantras and yogic therapies like meditation and pranavama to pacify the psychological disturbances of a patient. This branch of Ayurvedic science mainly tries to explore the unknown and the hidden facts of particular diseases.

Rasayana Chikitsa is the branch of Ayurvedic science, which deals with various aspects of preventive health care. This branch of Ashtang Ayurveda aims at achieving a long and healthy life. It includes longevity, improved memory, health, youthfulness, glow, complexion, generosity, strength of body and senses. Rasayana improves the metabolic activities and results in best possible biotransformation. Jara Cikitsa or Rasayana Tantra is the rejuvenating therapy, which promotes rejuvenation in a healthy person and cures the disease of an unhealthy person. The philosophy of Ayurveda is to establish good health, rather than just curing diseases. Rasayana is an active step towards achieving this philosophy. It prescribes treatment for repairing wear and tear of the body, due to aging or diseases. It rejuvenates the tissues of the body giving the person undergoing the treatment a young look. Not only physical and mental, Rasayana provides spiritual aid to the body as well, thereby bringing the body out of its state of natural or man made loss. It also claims at holding back the process of aging. Rasayana-chikitsa basically boosts the ojas (vital force of life) and the immune system. Rasayana chikitsa helps a person to maintain good health or to establish impaired or lost physical or mental health. The Jara chikitsa regime comprises of a very strict diet. Amalaki, haritaki, trifala, brungaraj, ashwagandha, punarnava, chitraka are few out of the long list of herbs that are called rasayanakar. The Rasayana medicines are believed to have aphrodisiac qualities as well. In short Rasayana chikitsa is rejuvenation of the soul. It provides a long, disease free and vigorous life to the person, who undergoes this therapy seriously, as it helps to bring life back to normal. Three Modes Of Rasayana Rasayana basically promotes the nutrition through three modes. They are: By directly enriching the nutritional intake of the body through increasing the consumption of satavarai, milk, ghee, etc By improving agni i.e. digestion and metabolism through bhallataka, pippali etc, thereby promoting nutrition. By promoting the capability of srotas or microcirculatory channels in the body, through herbs like guggulu, tulsi, and so on Types Of Rasayana Chikitsa The first type of Rasayana Chikitsa is mainly for people, who cannot dedicate long hours and are short of both enthusiasm and effort. Such types of patients are given a short package of rasayana, so that they continue their routine life simultaneously. In the process, patients generally undergo a dietary change and also a change in their regular lifestyle. The medicines, given in the therapy, are carefully chosen, bearing in mind, the patients age, sex, prakruti (constitution), habits, living conditions and diseases acquired in the past and also present state of the body. The second type is a more complicated process and involves total reformation of the body. In such a therapy, the patient is isolated from his/her routine life and is kept in a kuti (hut), which is

specially designed for rasayana-chikitsa, under the observation of an ayurvedic specialist. The whole lifestyle of the person is continuously monitored. It is believed that when the person comes out of the kuti, his/her body is completely rejuvenated. All the old tissues are replaced by new and lively tissues. The therapy can be termed as the reincarnation and reinvigoration of the soul.

Ayurveda is the holistic approach, which is mainly concerned with the treatment of the body. In the process, the person undergoes a change in the lifestyle, which includes change in food, clothing and sometimes even residence. Ayam and vyayam, yogasadhana and gati are some of the vital components that are included in an ayurvedic treatment. Coming to kayachikitsa, it is the first branch of Astanga Ayurveda or eight-branched Ayurveda that deals with general medicine. The total treatment procedure is called Kaya Chikitsa (or internal medicine), wherein kaya means 'body' and chikitsa means 'treatment'. Kaya Chikitsa mainly deals with the diagnosis and treatment of a variety of general diseases, such as skin disorders, diabetes, tuberculosis, rheumatoid arthritis and many other disorders. Charaka Samhita is the most important scripture on kayachikitsa. It discussed the basic principles of treatment, various types of therapies and purification or detoxification methods. According to this natural treatment, the body of a person is product of the constant psychosomatic interactions and diseases caused are due to the imbalance caused in the trishods of the body. This imbalance caused in the three doshas of vata-pitta-kapha is sometimes, caused by the mind and occasionally by the body's dhatu (tissues) and mala (toxin deposits). It is then that the kayachitikitsa branch of ayurveda comes to assistance. Kayachitikitsa is the branch of herbal and holistic medicine, which delves deep into ascertaining the root cause of the illness. The entire Ayurvedic therapeutics is based on the concept of Agni. The concept of Kaya (Agni) is unique and is responsible for bio- transformation. As it is known that energy can neither be created nor can it be destroyed. In human body, Kaya provides the necessary energy for all bodily activities. The energy provided is derived from the food we eat and the air we breathe. The biological system of the body transforms this energy to one, which is utilized by the cells. The Treatment There are six stages of the development of disease are enumerated as aggravation, accumulation, overflow, relocation, build up in a new site and manifestation into a recognizable disease. In kayachikitsa, there is always an opportunity to stop the disease at each stage, thereby preventing its full manifestation. One of the significant methods of treatment under kayachikitsa is panchakarma. In this procedure, the body is purified and cleansed from the vitiated dosha to achieve the state of homogenizes and happiness. In short, this method mainly deals with reversing the disease path from its manifestation stage, back into to its site of original development, through special forms of emesis, purgation and enema. Rejuvenation - Kaya Kalpa Another unique aspect of kayachikitsa is rejuvenation also known as kaya kalpa. The term kaya kalpa is principally defined as the renewal of body. According to Ayurveda, the human body is made of seven types of dhatu or tissues structures - plasma, blood, muscle, fat, bone, marrow and reproductive fluids. To prolong the youthfulness of the body, kayachikitsa applies several physical and mental disciplinary methods with special medicinal preparations, to rebuild the body's cells and tissues after the initial process of detoxification, through panchakarma.

6. Shalakya Tantra
One out of the eight branches of Ayurveda, Shalakya Tantra deals with the etiology, diagnosis, prognosis, prevention and treatment of diseases that are located above the neck region such as the head, ear, nose, eye and throat. It is responsible for all types of problems in and around the head. The name of the branch is so called because of its excessive use of 'Shalaka', which means probe. In South India, the branch is also known by the name - Urdhwangchikitsa. The word can be broken into two parts - Urdhwang which means the body parts above the shoulder and Chikitsa which signifies treatment. In Shalakya Tantra, there are different types of probe that are included. Some of them are

probe of the eye (netra shalaka), probe of the ear (karna shalaka), probe of the nose (nasa shalaka), of the throat (mukh shalaka) and of the lips (oshta shalaka). Textual Reference The process of Shalakya Tantra includes different techniques that are applicable for the treatment of all the problems. The main aspects of Shalyakya tantra is described in the ancient ayurvedic texts such as Sushrut Sanhita, Charak Sanhita and Ashtang Hruday. The books mainly deal with treatment of different types of conjunctivitis and glaucoma, along with surgical procedure of the removal of cataract and cosmetic surgery such as rhinoplasty and auroplasty (repair of traumatized nose and ear). Apart from the above mentioned complicated problems and of treatment, the three samhitas - Charaka, Susruta and Astanga Hridaya, recommend simple home remedies for minor problems, such as dryness of eye, wax in ear, migraine and mouth ulcers etc. which are being successfully administered even today. Diseases Approximately 72 diseases of the eye are discussed by Sushrut Sanhita, including surgical procedures for cataracts, conjunctivitis, pterygium, pre-glaucomatic condition and glaucoma and diseases of the iris/pupil. The branch is not just revolved around the problem and the treatment, but also deals with general aspects. Talking about the eyes, it describes the structure of the eyes in a way that all the intricate things are also dealt with, as in modern science. Surgeries such as hinoplasty and auraplasty have also been mentioned in the texts for cosmetic reasons. The three books, Charak Samhita, Sushurut Samhita and Ashtang Samghrah, also mention the methods regarding the general care of the eye and ENT structures. In addition to this, Shalakya Tantra has listed 25 diseases of the ear, 18 diseases of the nose, 11 diseases of the lips, 1 disease of the lymph glands, 23 diseases of the teeth, 6 diseases of the tongue, 8 diseases of the palate, 18 diseases of the throat-pharynx-larynx and 8 diseases of the oral cavity.

In the ancient India, surgery was principally pioneered by Ayurveda. Shalya Chikitsa is a significant branch of Ayurvedic science. The name of the sage-physician, Susruta, is synonymous with surgery. From his treatise Susruta Samhita, we have become aware of the thousand of years ago sophisticated methods of surgery that were practiced in India. Topics of intestinal obstructions, bladder stones, and the use of dead bodies for dissection and learning were taught and practiced in ancient India. The original text of Susruta has a detailed discussion of the exhaustive range of surgical methods, which is inclusive of methods on how to deal with various types of tumors, internal and external injuries, fracture of bones, complications during pregnancy and delivery and obstruction in intestinal loop. Susruta was the first surgeon to develop cosmetic surgery in ayurveda. His surgical treatment for trichiasis can be reckoned with some of the modern operative techniques used for this eye disease. Charaka, the best-known physician of Ayurvedic medicine, also recommended for Shalya Tantra for the treatment of certain diseases, which required immediate attention such as hemorrhoids. The long foreign rule in India and lack of promotion stalled the progress of Ayurvedic surgery in the middle of the second millennium. Another major draw back of Shalya tantra was lack of proper aseptic precautions during the earlier days. In addition to this, the instruments in use were crude (because of the materials used) and their use was painful. Diseases Treated According to Susruta, Shalya tantra is best suited, when the problem is beyond just medicinal repair. In cases like, Arbuda (abscesses, cysts), Gandamala (enlarged lymph nodes), Mul- vyadhi (hemorrhoids), Gud-bransh (prolapse rectum), Ashmari (stones), Mutravaodh (retention of urine) and stanarog (breast diseases), Shalya tantra should be used. The treatment would not only give faster relief to the ailing person, but also be beneficial in situations, where kayachikitsa will fall short. Procedures In this branch of ayurvedic treatment, describes detailed information about the pre-operative

procedures, general procedures, post-operative procedures, marma's (significant points) and also about anesthesia. Along with this, it also describes the types of bandages, shastra (sharp instruments), yantras (blunt instruments) and sutures (stitches) used in the surgery. The use of various surgical instruments is also described in the Susruta Samhita for the treatment. Instruments Used In Shalya tantra, the instruments described were mainly made from stone, wood, branches of trees, broad leaves and other such natural materials. For ligatures a creeper i.e. a climbing plant was also sometimes used. The treatment of Shalya Tantra was popular, because this could give fast relief as compared to the slow process of recovery from medicines or herbs. Diseases, which requires instant treatment in those cases shalyachikitsa was the best method.

Vrishya Chtikitsa is a branch of Ayurveda that explains the art of producing healthy progeny for the creation of a better society. It deals with various diseases like infertility and conditions relating to weak shukra dhatu or the vital reproductive fluids of the body. Vrishya Chtikitsa is also known as Vajikarana, which means the medicine or therapy by which a man becomes capable of copulating with a woman. Vrishya Chtikitsa also helps in nourishing the body of the person. Apart from prescribing a lot of effective formulations to provide nutrition to enhance the quality of these vital body fluids, it has been specifically emphasized to lead a highly disciplined life. Charaka, in his great Ayurvedic classic writing Charaka Samhita, states the use of aphrodisiacs as mentioned in ayurvedic therapies enhance one's potency. As per the Vrishya Chtikitsa, celibacy is essential for good health. It helps increase the will power, intellect and memory, in addition to a healthy body. The shukra dhatu has a direct link with ojas or the immunity of the body. Hence, vajikaran prescribed the therapeutic use of various aphrodisiacs and tonic preparations for enhancing the vigor and reproductive capabilities of men that also strengthens other body tissues (dhatus) like muscles, fats, bones and blood. Vajikarana is mainly concerned with therapies concerning specific remedies for male infertility and impotence as well as female infertility. Apart from being good aphrodisiacs, these induce an immediate sense of pleasurable excitement, along with increased fertile seminal secretions, even in an ageing person. Vrishya Chtikitsa branch of Ashtang Ayurveda states the reason for sexual inefficiency and directs the use of several aphrodisiac herbs and minerals to enhance the vitality. Targeted at improving the sexuality of an individual, this aphrodisiac therapy aims at promoting the quality of the germinative tissues of an individual and is used to treat impotency and increases vitality. The method involves Kayaseka, Dhara, Navarakkizhi treatments and consumption of certain aphrodisiac medicines. The herbs and treatments are aimed at improving the condition for both men and women. In this therapy, the individual is follows a Ayurvedic directions strictly, by taking in herbs or herbal combinations that have aphrodisiac properties. Some of the Ayurvedic aphrodisiacs that give extra sexual power to couples and enable them to give birth to healthy children are Shilajit, Mucuna Pruriens (naikkurana), Aswagandha, and so on. With the help of the treatment, the strength and stamina of the individual also enhances.

Ayurveda emphasizes preventative and healing therapies, along with myriad methods of purification and rejuvenation of the body, mind and soul. Apart from being a healing system, it is a science that tells us the art of appropriate living. It tells us how to achieve longevity and live a life that is free of diseases. Panchakarma is Ayurveda's one of the ancient and important purification and detoxification treatments. In Sanskrit, the word 'Panchakarma literally means "five therapies", which suggests that it is a comprehensive system of knowledge and practices to purify the body of toxins and restore it to balance with the law of Mother Nature. The five therapeutic means of eliminating toxins from the body, which constitute the Panchakarma, are Vamana, Virechana, Nasya, Basti and Raktamoskshana. The therapies deal with stress related problems and the toxins that may trigger an ailment, at the same time, they concentrate

on creating a balance between the doshas (energies that govern all biological functions). Although Panchakarma is a highly effective therapy, it can remain ineffective, if the person doesn't follow a special detoxification diet, along with the treatments. In this section, we have provided comprehensive information on Panchakarma therapy and its significance in Ayurveda.


One of the main procedures of Panchakarma Chikitsa, Basti karma concentrates on the elimination of the loosened vata dosha out through the rectum. The treatment involves the introduction of medicinal substances, such as, herbal oils and decoctions in a liquid medium, into the rectum of the person. This is because vata is predominantly located in the colon and bones. Herbal concoctions made of sesame oil are generally used for the purpose. Vata disorders can be effectively cured by Basti karma. Common cold, sexual disorders, constipation, distention, kidney, backache, pain in the neck region, vomiting and hyperacidity can also be cured by Basti karma.

If administered properly, Basti karma is an effective treatment that has very few or no side effects on the body. The medication techniques used for the treatment are known as enemas. According to Ayurveda, the enemas are not suitable for people suffering from shortness of breath, chronic abdominal pain, bleeding from rectum, cough, diarrhea and severe anemia. Therefore, barring the exceptions, Basti karma can be adopted to people in order to rejuvenate the body, provide strength and longevity. Go through the following lines to get information on different types of Basti karma and the benefits of the treatment. Types Of Basti Karma Aasthapan Basti / Nirhua Basti (Decoction Enema): This type of treatment is predominantly used to treat arthritic conditions and nervous disorders, obstruction of urine, stools and flatus; amenorrhoea and infertility. Herbal decoction and small amounts of oil are used to treat the ailments. This type of Basti karma is not suitable for malnourished and weak people or those suffering from tuberculosis, ascites, peritonitis, intestinal obstruction, dysentery, diabetes, skin diseases and asthma. Anuvasan Basti / Oil Enema: Anuvasan Basti is used to treat the people who are not recommended to opt Nirhua Basti treatment. Warm oil with small amounts of decoction is used in Anuvasan Basti. The treatment rejuvenates the body. People suffering from piles, obesity, intestinal worms, anemia and jaundice should stay away from Anuvasan Basti. Benefits Of Basti Karma Basti karma is highly beneficial in cleansing and detoxifying the body. The strong treatment penetrates deep into the dhatus, while the mild treatment works on the superficial level of dhatus. Both the treatments are beneficial for the body. Secretions in the colon are promoted by Basti karma, thereby ensuring a good health. People suffering from constipation would find the treatment beneficial, because it promotes the liquefaction of ama and mala (waste products) in the colon. The palliative treatment helps the colon expel them. Similar to western enemas, the Basti karma increases colonic peristalsis, producing rapid elimination of the feces. Warning Proper administration of Basti karma is quintessential to gain the benefits of the treatment. This is

because, the karma, if not done properly, leads to a number of complications. When the therapy is incomplete, then the person may experience spasmodic pains, burning sensation, anorectal itching and pain, anorexia, blockage of stools and flatus. If the treatment is given in excess, it causes anorectal inflammation and ulceration, fissure, weakness, and muscular cramps.

One of the Panchakarmas mentioned in Ayurveda, Nasya therapy is a process wherein the drug (herbalized oils and liquid medicines) is administered through the nostrils. Since nose is the gateway of the head, the therapy is highly effective in curing a number of diseases pertaining to the head, if it is performed systematically. The therapy cleanses and opens the channels of the head, thereby improving the process of oxygenation (prana), which has a direct influence on the functioning of brain. The therapy is beneficial if done on a regular basis, because it keeps the eyes, nose and ear healthy. It also prevents the early graying of hair and bear. Read on to know more about Nasa karma, a therapy of Panchakarma.

Benefits Of Nasya Karma Nasya karma ensures the proper and healthy growth of hair. The therapy enhances the activity of sense organs and protects the person from diseases pertaining to head (urdhwanga) Early aging process is effectively prevented by the regular administration of Nasya karma Types Of Nasya Karma Pradhamana (virechan) Nasya (cleansing nasya): In this type of Nasya karma, dry powders (rather than oils) are blown into the nose with the help of a tube. Pradhamana nasya is mainly used to treat kapha types of diseases such as headaches, heaviness in the head, cold, nasal congestion, sticky eyes and hoarseness of voice due to sticky kapha, sinusitis. Chronic diseases such as cervical lymph adenitis and tumors can also be treated by Pradhaman Nasya. Some skin diseases are easily treated by this type of Nasya karma. Epilepsy, drowsiness, Parkinsonism, inflammation of the nasal mucosa, attachment, greed and lust can be effectively treated by the therapy. Powders such as brahmi are traditionally used in this therapy. Bruhana Nasya (nutrition nasya): This treatment uses ghee, oils, salt, shatavari ghee, ashwagandha ghee and medicated milk to cure vata disorders. Studies suggest that it is beneficial to cure vata-type headaches, migraine headache, dryness of voice, dry nose, nervousness, anxiety, fear, dizziness and emptiness. Negative thoughts can be banished by undergoing this treatment. In case of the person is suffering from heaviness of eyelids, bursitis, stiffness in the neck, dry sinuses and loss of sense of smell, Bruhana Nasya would be the best bet. Shaman Nasya (Sedative Nasya): Sedative Nasya is used according to which dosha is aggravated in the human body. It is mainly administered to treat pitta-type disorders such as thinning of hair, conjunctivitis and ringing in the ears. Generally, herbal medicated decoctions, teas and medicated oils are used as the medicine in this type of Nasya karma. Navana Nasya (Decoction Nasya): This type of therapy is used in vata-pitta or kapha-pitta disorders. Decoctions and medicated oils are poured through the nostrils of the person undergoing the treatment.

Marshya Nasya (Ghee Or Oil Nasya): This type of Marshya Nasya karma makes use of ghee/oil. The therapy is administered for a particular reason, which may not be disease, but a condition of uneasiness arising from a particular disease. Pratimarshya (Daily Oil Nasya): This type of therapy is administered by dipping the clean little finger in ghee or oil and inserting into each nostril. After inserting the clean finger (dipped in ghee or oil) into the nostril, the nasal passage is lubricated and given a gentle massage. By doing this, the deep nasal tissues are opened up. By doing Pratimarshya on a regular basis, stress can be released to a great extent. Diseases Treated Under Nasya Therapy Aphonia Bronchitis Cataract Catarrh Chronic coryza Coryza Diseases of mouth, nose, ear, eye and head Diseases of the eyelid Dryness Of The Nose Facial Paralysis Frozen Shoulder Hemi Crania Hoarseness of voice Hysteria Migraine Multiple Sclerosis Parkinsonism Seminal disorders Shoulder pain Sinus Congestion Sinusitis Stammering Stiffness in the head, neck, teeth and jaw Tetanus Tonsilitis Toothache and other tooth disorders Uvulitis.

Raktamoksha therapy is one of the Panchakarmas of Ayurveda. Literally meaning Blood Letting, Raktamoksha is performed to eliminate the toxins from the bloodstream through the gastrointestinal tract. It is a safe, painless and highly effective form of Panchakarma. Raktamoksha entails the refinement of blood, hence administered to treat disorders pertaining to skin, such as urticaria, rash, eczema, acne, scabies, leucoderma, chronic itching and hives. Enlarged liver, spleen, hemochromatosis and gout can also be cured by applying the blood letting therapy. The therapy develops the immune mechanism in the blood system by stimulating the antitoxic substances in the blood stream. Barring a few exceptions such as people suffering from anemia, edema, weakness or those who are too young or too old, everybody can opt for Raktamoksha therapy. Procedure The disintegration of red blood cells in the liver leads to the formation of pitta. Since pitta and blood are closely linked to each other, any imbalance between the two can cause diseases related to blood. For instance, increase in pitta causes toxicity in the blood, thus giving way to various pitta-genic disorders. Here comes the use of Raktamoksha therapy. In such cases, if a small amount of blood is extracted from the vein, a lot of tension can be relieved that was created by the pitta-genic toxins

prevalent in the blood. Moreover, the process of blood letting stimulates the spleen in order to produce anti-toxic substances that can help the stimulation of immune system of the body. Thus, Raktamoksha therapy cures a number of blood-borne diseases. Diseases Treated By Raktamoksha Therapy Raktamoksha Therapy is performed to treat a number of diseases including abscess, eczema, gout, herpes and jaundice. People suffering from Leucoderma and piles are often suggested to opt for Raktamoskha therapy. It is learnt that various types of skin diseases can be easily cured by proper administration of Raktamoksha therapy. Various Ayurvedic practitioners suggest people to opt for Raktamoksha therapy, if they are suffering from syncope and ulcer. Two Types of Raktamokshan Therapy Shastra Prayoga Pracchana: In order to drain the accumulated blood from a particular point of the body, Pracchana is administered. Sira Vedhana: Also termed as Venepuncture, Sira Vedhana is devised whenever vitiated blood circulates in the body. Anushastra Prayoga Jalouka Prayoga: During Jalouka Prayoga, leech is applied to extract deep-seated blood. By doing this, the blood vitiated by pitta is extracted efficiently. Sringa: Sringa or horn is used to extract the blood vitiated by vata. Alabu: Blood vitiated by kapha can be extracted by Alabu, as it comprises of tikshna and ushna gunas. Ghati Yantra: If the vitiated blood has settled in different layers of the skin, then the best bet would be to administer Ghati Yantra, another form of Raktamoksha therapy.

The kapha toxins accumulated in the body and the respiratory tract are effectively removed by Vamana, one of the five therapies of Panchakarma in Ayurveda. Vamana is therapeutic vomiting, which is a medicated emesis therapy. People with high imbalance of kapha are given this type of treatment, which loosens and mobilizes the toxins, in an effort to eliminate them from the body. Waste products (vitiated dosha) are eliminated through the upper gastrointestinal tract. The vitiated kapha are eliminated through the mouth. After vomiting, the sinus is cleared, which in turn provides relief from congestion, wheezing and breathlessness. Know more about Vamana therapy by going through the following lines.

Objective The objective of Vaman therapy is to induce vomiting in the person to get rid of the mucus that causes excess kapha. During the treatment, kapha aggravating foods such as basmati rice and yogurt with salt are given to the patient, in the morning. Thereafter, heat is applied to the chest and back, in order to

liquefy kapha. A drink made by mixing madanaphalam, licorice, honey or calamus root tea is given to the patient, after the kapha is liquefied. Salt or cardamom may also be added to the medicated drink. Consumption of the drink triggers vomiting in the patient. If vomiting doesnt occur spontaneously, then it is induced by rubbing on the tongue. Procedure The patient feels better after vomiting for four to eight times. This is followed with the internal administration of ghee treatment and a steam bath. After performing Vamana therapy, the patient should take rest and not consume heavy food. Fasting is highly recommended immediately after Vamana therapy. The patient is also given certain herbal cigarettes to smoke. In addition to this, it is strictly recommended that the natural urge to urinate, defecate, sneeze and cough should not be suppressed. If vamana is administered properly, the person feels relaxed and able to breathe freely. Lightness in the chest is often experienced after undergoing the therapy. The person thinks clearly, develops a clear voice and good appetite. All the symptoms of congestion vanish away after the proper administration of Vamana therapy. Health Problems Treated By Vamana Therapy Vamana Therapy is suitable for treating a number of diseases including anemia, chronic indigestion, sinus problems, cough and cold. Certain chronic diseases like diabetes can be treated by this therapy. People suffering from edema, epilepsy, skin diseases, fever, loss of appetite and lymphatic obstruction can find this therapy beneficial. Nausea and food poisoning are effectively cured by Vamana therapy. In case of repeated attacks of tonsillitis, most of the Ayurvedic practitioners suggest to opt for Vamana therapy. Latest studies in the field of medical science suggest that certain symptoms of asthma can be cured by this highly effective form of Panchakarma.

Ayurveda, the science of life, emphasizes on the adoption of a number of preventative and healing therapies, which can purify and rejuvenate the body, mind and soul. The medicinal form of science is not just a healing system, but also an art of appropriate, healthy and disease-free living. It aims at increasing the longevity of people of all ages. One of the therapies of Ayurveda, Panchakarma encompasses five treatments that can prevent and heal a number of diseases. One of the types of Panchakarma is Virechana, a purification therapy. The Treatment Virachana therapy is defined as the medicated purgation therapy, which cleanses the Pitta and purifies blood, by clearing the toxins from the body. The treatment concentrates on the toxins that are accumulated in the liver and gall bladder. The gastro-intestinal tract is also cleansed by Virachana therapy. This treatment is usually administered for three days after Vamana treatment, but its duration may vary from case to case. In fact, Virechana can be administered directly after purvakarma, without undergoing the Vamana therapy that precedes Virechana. Procedure While performing the Virechana karam, the vitiated doshas are eliminated through the rectum. The drugs used for the purgation therapy are vitiate the doshas and bring them into the abdomen. During the procedure, the patient is subjected to Oleation first, then Fomentation, which is followed by Emisis and Samsarjana Karma (post operative). The internal Oleation is followed for three to seven days. Thereafter, a medicated steam bath is performed for three days. A light and warm diet is prescribed for the patient, a day before starting Virechana karma. However, certain factors like body and mind constitution, age of the person, mental condition should be considered, while opting for Virechana karma. Herbs Used For The Therapy Virechan therapy aims at cleansing the sweat glands, small intestine, colon, kidneys, stomach, liver and spleen. A number of herbs are used for the treatment, which serve as laxative. Some of the herbs

preferred by majority of Ayurvedic practitioners include senna, prune, bran, flaxseed husk, dandelion root and psyllium seed. Cow's milk, salt, castor oil, raisins and mango juice are also used for the treatment. When the laxatives are consumed by the patient, he/she is recommended to follow a restricted diet. This proves beneficial for the patient. Health Problems Treated By Virechana Therapy Virechana can treat a number of health problems and uproot them, so that they do not occur again. Skin diseases, chronic fever, piles, abdominal tumors, worms, gout, jaundice, irritable bowel syndrome, gastrointestinal problems and constipation can be effectively cured by Virechana therapy. In addition to these, the therapy is administered to treat diabetes, asthma, goiter, lepracy, headaches, elephantiasis and gynecological disorders. Virechana karma aims to eliminate doshas from kidneys, lungs and sweat glands, which is otherwise not possible by Vamana karma.


According to Ayurveda, Prakruti means the physical constitution of a person and vikruti means the state of disease. Prakruti is the science of nature which determines the innate character, physical constitution or disposition of a person. It helps in deciding the ideal lifestyle and therapeutic regimen for an individual. Depending on the predominance of a single dosha, or different permutations and combinations, Prakruti could be of seven types out of which the three main types are vata, pitta and kapha whereas Vikruti has several types and can be determined only through thorough examinations. Read to explore more about Prakruti and Vikruti. Meaning of Prakruti The term Prakruti is a Sanskrit word that literally means, nature, or basic trait. The combination of Vata, Pitta, and Kapha which is present in the individual at the time of conception is maintained throughout his lifetime. Different persons can have different combination of Vata, Pitta and kapha as their basic constitution or Prakruti. That is why; two people react differently when exposed to a similar situation. Thus, according to Ayurveda everyone is unique and each one of them has a distinct body constitution, which is totally different from each other. Meaning of Vikruti Vikruti, on the other hand is the discrepancy that makes our body different from a normal or healthy constitution. In simple terms, it is the abnormal or the diseased state. When the doshas of the body are not in perfect equilibrium, it can be termed as the stage of Vikruti. Any kind of abnormality or Vikruti in the body can lead to complications in the normal regulation of body functions and thus lead to any serious complication or disease. For treating vikruti, reason or etiology of the disease, the state of doshas, the state of the dushyas (the dhatus that are vitiated by the dosha), desha (habitat of the person and kala (seasonal time), bala (strength of the patient and disease) and symptoms of the individual is determined. A body sans any kind of Vikruti is said to be absolutely healthy and fit. An Example

The concept of Prakruti and Vikruti can be illustrated with reference to our body temperature. When healthy, we maintain an average body temperature of about 98.4oF, which can be regarded as our Prakruti. Although different persons can have different base temperatures, it does not change much so long as the person is healthy. When we go outside on a winter day, our body temperature may go down slightly; but will come right back to the normal if we are healthy. When we are sick or catch a cold, our body temperature will go up. This indicates that we are sick or outside our normal base condition. We may take medicine to bring the body temperature back to the normal range. In analogy to Ayurveda, our present temperature may be considered as Vikruti, because Vikruti means the state of disease. So it is important to understand the Prakruti and Vikruti of our body.

Ayurveda is an ancient medical science yet it is based on so much of scientific logics that it is amazing to see that such an advance medical science existed thousands of years ago in the Indian subcontinent. Unlike other ancient medical sciences, the science of Ayurvedic healing is not simply based on assumptions and probabilities rather based on logical examinations and tests. So much developed was the Ayurvedic science thousands of years back that the Ayurvedic practitioners used to diagnose or determine the prakruti by simply observing the patient and his activities.

The diagnosis before the Ayurvedic treatment was not simply logical but also very elaborate. It was not aimed at simply finding out immediate causative factors of an ailment rather a detailed and root cause of the defect lying inside the patients body. For this, an elaborate study of the patients character was done and his lifestyle and food habits were observed closely. All this was done in order to find out the basis physical and mental trait of a person so that the disease can be determined as well as the treatment to it can be prescribed in accordance. This basis physical and mental trait was then termed as Prakruti. Ayurvedic Body Constitution According to Ayurveda, Prakruti, which means innate character, physical constitution or disposition of a person, plays an important role in comprehending the physical and mental characteristics. With the changing social and cultural environment our behavioral aspect also gets affected but the most important fact is that our basic constitution remains constant throughout our lives, just as our blood group does not change ever. It is inculcated in the basic body constitution and character of an individual. Evaluation of Body Constitution Our constitution or Prakruti is a combination of the three doshas namely Vata, Pitta and Kapha. These three are the dynamic forces, which are present in all living beings with the only difference being the degree of interaction of the doshas. Each dosha has a dominant element in them like the main element in Vata is Air, Pitta is Fire and Kapha is Water; similarly we identify ourselves as vata, pitta or kapha and thereby relate ourselves as a composition of the great elements of the universe. Based on the constitution or combination of these doshas, prakruti of every individual can be determined. The effect of various diseases on an individual depends on the body constitution or Prakruti of a person. Also, the Ayurvedic treatments for varied diseases, varied formulations, daily regime, health recipes, etc are also all based on the body constitution of a person. Once the Prakruti or basic constitution of a person is determined it is very easy to suggest him any kind of treatment. Even the

diet and lifestyle of an individual should be regulated in accordance with his Prakruti so that one can avoid all possible causative elements of any kind of ailment and live a healthy long life.

Human body is very much like a machine, if not handled properly and not given adequate rest, it can give up any time anywhere. Like a machine, it also prefers to work under favorable circumstances and for a limited period of time so that it does not wear out soon. However, considering the hectic lifestyle and the inhumane pressure that people suffer these days, it is impossible to remain healthy forever. The emergence of lifestyle diseases are the result of the brutal, unorganized and hectic lifestyle people follow these days. There is a description of such circumstances in Ayurveda and it has been said that the root cause behind such disease are the imbalance in the Sharirik Doshas.

Three Sharirik Doshas According to Ayurveda, there are three primary energies or doshas in a human body. The doshas are Vata, Pitta, and Kapha. These doshas regulate all physical and psychological behaviors, from basic cell structure to the most complex mental functions. Vata, Pitta and Kapha are the subtle forms of the three bhutas -air, fire and water in a human body. When the Doshas fall out of balance, the diseases may manifest. Ayurveda seeks to return the doshas to and maintain them at their natural balance in our individual constitution. Significance of Doshas According to Ayurveda, doshas are of vital importance because they are responsible for coordinating and directing all the structures and substances of the body. Knowledge of the doshas and their functioning give us the understanding of the intelligence that commands the dhatus (body tissues) and malas (waste products) and gives the body its vast functional capability. It is thus very important for these doshas to remain in a healthy state of equilibrium. The theory of the three doshas is the crown jewel of Ayurvedic science and cornerstone of its diagnostic and treatment modalities. According to Ayurveda, all the motions, transportation and electromagnetic activities are controlled by Vata. Pitta represents fire principle and as such is concerned with process of conversion, consumption and other chemical changes taking place in the living body and last but not the least, Kapha is the principle of water and thus every living cell is pervaded by it in order to perform their functions. Evaluation of Doshas Evaluation of these doshas can be easily done in a human body if it is observed closely. The lifestyle, the diet chart, the sleeping pattern, the basic trait of a human nature reveals much about the sharirik dosha of a person. The three doshas are also invariably connected with life as it is seen that the dead body and the other inanimate objects do not have any of the three doshas. It proves that tridoshas are invariably connected with life. It is said that as the prana (soul) enters into the material body, the three doshas -vata, pitta and kapha -emerge to take up the physiological functions and as the soul leaves the body the three doshas also get away.

The adnormal state or the diseased state of the body is termed as Vikruti in Ayurveda. Prakruti, on the other hand, is the normal state of mind and body. In Ayurveda, both Prakruti and Vikruti form a significant part, the latter being more perused. In simple words, if a doctor is treating a particular disease of a person, then he is treating the Vikruti of the person. The science of life states that if the doshas of the body are not in equilibrium, then a person suffers from any form of disease. While treating a disease, a physician considers the reason or etiology of the disease, the state of doshas, the state of the dushyas (the dhatus that are vitiated by the dosha), desha (habitat of the person and the place of the disease), kala (seasonal time), bala (strength of the patient and disease) and symptoms. Read on to know more about the concept of Vikruti.

What Is Vikruti Vigyan? The knowledge gained by scrutinizing the causes and symptoms of a disease, the capacity of digestive fire, immunity and age of the person is called Vikruti Vigyan. It is said that the Vikruti Vigyan should be accurate in order to treat the disease of a person. This is simply because if the diagnosis is not correct, then the treatment would not yield the desired results. Ayurveda says that the Vikruti of a disease is further classified into two types - Prarutik disease and Vikrutik disease. It is easier to cure Vikrutijanya vyadhi than Prakrutijanya vyadhi. Example The concept of Vikruti can be best illustrated with reference to the human body temperature. Generally, the normal temperature of a healthy human body is 37 degrees Celsius (98.6 degrees Fahrenheit). The temperature may vary, depending upon the physical conditions of the body as well as the atmosphere. For instance, if we are jogging on a hot sunny day, then the body temperature may slightly increase. The temperature of the body may also shoot up, when we are suffering from sickness such as fever and cold. The body temperature may drip on chilly winter conditions. Although the normal human body temperature fluctuates due to hot or cold conditions, we would pick right back up to the normal, if we are healthy. On the other hand, if we are sick, then we would have to take medication to bring back the body temperature to normal. In such a situation, our present temperature may be termed as Vikruti, whereas the normal body temperature may be termed as Prakruti. The difference between Prakruti and Vikruti would help us figure out, whether or not any medical intervention is required. While diagnosing our physical condition, the first step that Ayurvedic practitioners take is determine the Prakruti and Vikruti.


Ayurveda is the most ancient and traditional science, whose basic principles deal with the natural way of living a healthy life. It basically revolves the five basic elements (pancha bhutam) of existence - earth, water, fire, air and ether. It is believed that the pancha bhutams should be balanced, which when disrupted, a number of natural calamities such as flood, cyclone and earthquakes occur. Ayurveda believes that every living creature in the universe is made up of the five elements, which serve as the building blocks of life. Life doesn't exist without these five elements. This reveals that the ancient medicinal form of Ayurveda is closely related to Mother Nature. The pancha bhutams are also called the five basic elements in Ayurveda.

Basic Elements Of Ayurveda i. Earth : Earth represents the solid state of matter in the planet. It symbolizes stability, permanence and rigidity. The human body consists of bones, teeth, cells and tissues, as the manifestations of the earth. Earth is regarded as a stable substance. Talking about human being, stability is the prerequisite for leading a healthy life, which is focused by Ayurveda. ii. Water : The liquid state is represented by water, another element of Ayurveda. Water is the prerequisite for the survival of living creatures, including humankind. About 70% of human body is made up of water, the very important liquid that is required for smooth functioning. In addition to water, fluids including our blood and lymph move between our cells and through our vessels, thereby providing us the energy required. The body temperature is also regulated. Water is a form without stability. iii. Fire : In order to convert solids into liquids, to gas and back again to the original state, a certain amount of power is required, which is provided by fire. Fire has the power to change the state of any substance. In human body, fire is present in the form of energy that binds atoms together, converts food to fat and muscle. In addition, fire creates impulses of nervous reactions and even our thought process. iv. Air : One of the forms of the pancha bhutam - air - is mobile and dynamic. Within the human body, air is present in the form of oxygen, which is the basis for all energy transfer reactions. Existent without form, air is the prerequisite for fire to burn. Talking about the human body, air is indirectly required to produce energy, which is the basic requisite for one's survival. Air is also the basic element of Ayurveda. v. Ether : Ether is described as the space, in which, everything happens. All matter exists in space. Ether is the distance that separates matter. Space is everywhere and touches everything. It is the receptivity and non-resistance to what is true. Talking about the human body, space is the considered as the vessel that receives all impressions. In the heart, it is believed that space accepts love.

In Sanskrit, the word 'dincharya' means daily routine. According to Ayurveda, one should follow the dincharya in order to lead a healthy and disease-free life. Everyday, two cycles of change pass through the human body, each bringing a Vata, Pitta, or Kapha predominance. Based on the cycles of vata, pitta and kapha, our daily routine should be divided into morning, noon, evening/twilight, dinner and bedtime. In the Ayurvedic texts, it is written that a person should wake up two hours prior to the sunrise, if he/she is not suffering from any diseases such as fever or diarrhea.

Very young, very old and sick people are some of the exceptions. According to dincharya, the day should be kick-started by eliminating the colon and the bladder, followed by a through cleaning of the senses - ears, eyes, mouth etc. This should be followed by an oil self massage. Exercise in the morning, just after the massage, helps rejuvenate the body and soul. After bathing, one should head towards the dining table for breakfast. The day follows by activities like studying, working or traveling. During the lunch, one should consume nutritious meal. After working for the day, twilight is the time to offer evening prayers. Dinner should consist of a light meal. Before going to bed, one should sit back and relax. By following the dincharya of Ayurveda, one can ensure a healthy life. Though it is difficult to follow a stringent dinacharya in this fast moving life, it is highly recommended by Ayurvedic physicians, because a number of health benefits are associated with it. The dinacharya makes one to lead a healthy and disciplined life. According to the latest studies in the field of medical science, people who stick to the daily routine are more fit than those, who do not have a particular time to perform their everyday activities. It is said that dinacharya reduces the stress level to a great extent. In addition to this, the person's body is purified and detoxified. Therefore, barring a few exceptions like sickness, very old and young age, Ayurvedic dinacharya is recommended for everyone. Ancient Daily Regime The Ayurvedic classics give us detailed descriptions of how to maintain healthy and disciplined lifestyle. Charaka has given a comprehensive and detailed account of the mode of living and rules of good conduct to be followed if we want a good, healthy and happy life. The average span of life for human beings should be one hundred years, but this may decrease if the prescribed good conduct is not adhered to. Modern Dincharya The Ayurvedic classics give us detailed descriptions of how to maintain a healthy and disciplined lifestyle. According to the science of life, the average span of life for human beings is one hundred years, which may decrease if the prescribed good conduct is not adhered to. The ancient medicinal form suggests that in order to achieve the fourfold objectives of life - dharma (virtuous duty), artha (wealth), kama (enjoyment) and moksha (salvation), we must have good health.

Modern Dincharya
The Ayurvedic classics give us detailed descriptions of how to maintain a healthy and disciplined lifestyle. According to the science of life, the average span of life for human beings is one hundred years, which may decrease if the prescribed good conduct is not adhered to. The ancient medicinal form suggests that in order to achieve the fourfold objectives of life - dharma (virtuous duty), artha (wealth), kama (enjoyment) and moksha (salvation), we must have good health. To serve the purpose, the Ayurvedic practitioners have formulated a dincharya (in Sanskrit, din means 'day' and Acharya means 'to follow').

It is believed that the daily routine (dincharya) is formulated to merge the daily cycle with the natural cycle of the Sun, Moon, Earth and other planets in the Solar System. The daily routine includes

all aspects of regimen and diet, to stay healthy and happy. The Ayurvedic Rishis have cited dincharya as the healing force, stronger than any other curative medicines. This is the reason why many Ayurvedic texts consist of the dincharya for an average adult. In this article, we have provided description about the daily routine in Ayurveda. Daily Routine In Ayurveda i. Wake Up : In Ayurveda, the night time is divided into 16 periods, starting from the sunset (of the previous day) to the sunrise of the following day. Ayurveda Rishis suggest that the ideal time to wake up is during the 14th period, which is about two hours prior to dawn, around 4.30am to 5am. This is primarily due to the fact the sattva in the air is at its maximum during the time. In fact, it is the most fresh and pure time of the entire day. Barring a few exceptions like very young or old people, parents with small children and people suffering from fevers or diarrhea, every one should wake up during the designated time. ii. After Waking Up : Right after you wake up to start the day, you should take a moment to see your true nature. To serve the purpose, take a short stroll outside your home and soak up the good vibes. Peep through the window to see what life is beyond the four walls of your home. Start your day thereafter. iii. Eliminate : One of the first things to do after waking up is to empty your colon and bladder. In fact, if you wait to eliminate the waste from your body, you are actually poisoning yourself slowly. Therefore, it is always suggested not to wait until later in the morning or during the day, to defecate. iv. Clean Yourself : After emptying your colon and bladder, it is the time to clean yourself. Brush your teeth, scrape your tongue and floss your mouth. Wash your eyes with rose water and ears with water. Gargle with warm water. You may also use quarter cup of herbal tea for the purpose. By cleaning your senses, you would be prepared for the day. v. Give An Oil Massage : Dryness in the tissues of the skin is a major part of aging. This is the reason why many people show the signs of aging at a very young age. Therefore, abhyanga or oil massage is highly recommended. Typically, a self massage, the morning abhyanga rejuvenates the skin and nurtures your mind and soul. vii. Exercise : Vyayama or exercise is an important part of dincharya. Physical exercise can be yoga, a walk, tai chi, swim or whatever that provides exercise to your muscles. Not strenuous though, simple exercises would make a huge difference in one person - the exercises would provide one with the much needed energy and activeness for the day. viii. Take A Bath : Bathing is inevitable in the dincharya, as recommended by Ayurveda. Warm water baths are usually suggested, but you may opt for a shower in cold water as well. Apart from cleaning your body, bathing increases the digestive fire. ix. Meditate : Meditation refreshes the mind, increases the concentration power and builds the energy needed for the rest of the day. Before trudging into the dining hall, sit in peace for a little while, say, ten minutes. x. Breakfast : Your breakfast should be light, with minimal quantity of calories and maximum nutrients. By doing this, you will be able to get the optimum amount of energy needed to stay active until the next meal. Kick-start the day with a healthy breakfast. Be sure not to skip your breakfast, because it is the first meal of your day. xi. Lunch : Until noon, you would be studying, doing work at your workplace or traveling. After six to seven hours of breakfast, it is the time to have your lunch. Since this is the main meal of the day, you need to eat a nutritious lunch, with moderate calorie intake. After having lunch, it is suggested to go for a little walk, say, for five minutes. This helps proper digestion of food. xii. Twilight : Twilight is the special time, which is a balance between the day and the night. Evening prayers, meditations should be carried out during twilight, because it is the best time to see your Self. xiii. Supper : Ayurveda rishis used to have supper is between 6 pm and 7 pm. However, it is not practical in this fast moving life. It is still advisable to have dinner before you exhaust completely. After the dinner is over, take a walk for a short while, say, fifteen minutes. xiv. Go To Bed : After having dinner, it is the time to relax. Spend some quality time with your family. Sit back and relax. Read a book or listen to soothing music. This is the time to calm your system down. Therefore, you should have a sound sleep of 6 to 7 hours.