It is so easy to pollute anything, even good things! Recently I prescribed yoga practice to a patient. However, she came back to me with weird queries like which yoga tracks and yoga mats are the best.
So, today, yoga has become a market. There is nothing wrong with this approach as it has helped yoga to become famous and accessible. However, it will be regrettable if the true spirit of yoga is lost amongst the marketing hustle bustle.
According to me, you need only a good Guru for learning yoga and nothing else. The essence of yoga is possessionlessness. This is the reason why yoga is excellent not only for physical health but also for mental health. It sets you free!
There are complications everywhere, anti-skid yoga mat, travel yoga mat, home yoga mat, and so on. You would be buying a pack of 5-6 yoga mats for each different situation. I will tell you one thing – you would genuinely excel in yogic balance if you do not have an anti-skid yoga mat, so please do not buy that at all!
Ayurvedic Minimalism will help you to live an organic life and prevent all kinds of disorders. It is critical to realize that we do not have to do different things to prevent different diseases. We just have to preserve the health of our body, and no disorders can find the weak link inside it.
If you are mentally and physically strong, you can Ace almost all kinds of diseases. At the same time, if you can maintain a tremendous digestive capacity in spite of your illness, your body will be able to burn away most of the disorders.
Minimalist Ayurvedic Life is all about how to live healthy with less. And when we are in deep contact with nature, we have everything that we need to live a healthy and fruitful life.
Today, when the world is facing this extreme corona crises , we can learn a few very important things from Ayurveda
The entire body is well connected, one cannot treat one organ and leave the other organ unaffected. So, a holistic approach is the only way to achieve any cure in the human body. All Ayurvedic medicines have multiple effects on different organs of the body and harm no part of the body in the process of treatment.
Everything whether it is product or service it is derived right from nature in Ayurveda. Infact, Ayurveda medicine is the next step in the treatment, the first step is always healing the body by itself. Simple things like air, water and earth can also heal the body.
All Ayurvedic medicines are derived from plant and made in Holistic Manner, manually from hand. No Ayurvedic preparation requires heavy machinery or artificial methods. In this way Ayurvedic treatment has zero carbon footprints.
All Ayurvedic medicines are derived from nature. According to Ayurveda, everything on earth, living or nonliving, has medicinal value. Besides, instead of using chemicals extracted from herbs, the entire herbal part of medicinal value, like fruit, root, stem, etc, is used. The chemical of medicinal importance is balanced by other coexisting chemicals and roughage provided by plant cellulose. This wholeness of Ayurvedic medicine is a contrast to herbal extracts, where a single chemical compound is extracted in hope to produce a faster and better effect. This singling out destroys the possibility of an overall balanced impact of the unique naturally co-existing chemicals.
A singer works with his mouth, a painter works with his hands. But will you get a faster result of you cut out the mouth of a singer or the hands of a painter? Will the hand work faster than?
The effect of a medicinal herb is like the beauty of a flower. How can we appreciate its beauty by dissecting it? We fail to realize the life resides and sustains itself in wholeness and not in fragments.
Ayurveda does not aim to treat or subdue the symptoms. For example, impure blood is considered the cause of acne in Ayurveda. Therefore blood purification Therapy is the main treatment for acne and not the application of topical creams.
Ayurveda believes that all treatment comes from inside the body and not from outside. According to Ayurveda, any disease happens only when the body is weak from inside. And any permanent cure can come only when we remove the weakness from inside the body. When the body is strengthened to its natural form, it can fight back the disease and treat itself come on even without any external intervention.
No Ayurvedic Medicine is reported to cause hormonal imbalances or allergies even when used for a long duration.
However, most of the people do not know that this is true only for Herbal range of Ayurvedic medicine. There is another range of medicine which come under rasashastra. Medicines of receptive contain heavy metals like mercury, lead etc. Combination of Mercury and sulphur is highly praised in rasashastra medicine.
However these medicines containing heavy metals can bring severe Side Effects if they are not properly prepared. They can even be fatal if not used properly.
However when used in a right way these medicines can bring immediate improvement in severe conditions like facial paralysis kidney failure extreme fever etc.
Ayurveda elaborately describes healthy food and lifestyle to avoid diseases. The motto of Ayurveda is “ to keep people healthy and treat IF anyone falls sick”.
As far as I know, Ayurveda is the most elaborate preventive system in the history of medicine. Ayurveda sees that prevention is a daily task and not something which you do once in a while.
Besides Ayurvedic treatment extends to a wider region and covers much more than only vaccines for health supplements. According to Ayurveda the most effective prevention comes from inside the body. It is a known fact today according to all scientific studies, that stress is the leading cause of 99% diseases. And therefore the most effective prevention in Ayurveda is aachar Rasayan.
According to the tenets of Aacharya rasayana, A person should not get stressed, angry, greedy, jealous, or sorrowful. Avoiding all these negative emotions can help to preserve the the ultimate mental homeostasis which reflects in a complete hormonal balance and nervous balance in the body. And when these two control systems in the body are completely balanced there can be no disease.
Ayurvedic prevention starts from herbs, dinacharya, ritucharya, but it goes beyond the physical dimension to the mental dimension of prevention period and therefore it is a whole and perfect prevention.
All human beings are unique, they have different body types (Prakrati), therefore Ayurveda advocates personalized treatment for everyone.
Ayurveda is a person to describe the park Prakriti or individual body constitution for each person. Each person is naturally susceptible to one range of diseases where as he might never get others. Therefore Ayurveda AIMS for a perfect prevention and a permanent treatment by ascertaining the body type of a person.
It is best to go for the battle when you know the war field. Without knowing your body, any treatment or prevention is like shooting arrows in the dark.
Mind rules the body. Many lifestyle disorders like diabetes, hypertension are directly linked to stress.
We have already discussed about aachar Rasayan in previous paragraphs. However aachar Rasayan is the preventive method. Most interestingly, Ayurveda has the most extensive range of treatments for all kinds of mental disorders. Ayurveda underlines the Treatment of the mental base of all diseases through Satvavjaya Therapy.
And it is very interesting to note that shock treatment, music therapy, arts therapy, counselling, meditation, mindfulness et cetera are all discussed as parts of mental treatment in Ayurveda.
Diseases might be caused by pathogens, but a weak body defense provides the safe harbor to the pathogens. Therefore Ayurvedic Treatment is never focused on the removal of pathogens but enabling the body to prevent or fight against diseases.
The word ayu means the duration for which body, senses, mind, and soul come together and form a living creature. Therefore Ayurveda is not applicable only to human beings but also to plants, animals and birds. It Aims to serve all living creatures without any discrimination.
According to Ethics of Ayurveda, no Vaidya or Ayurvedic doctor should charge a consultation fee. All consultation on medical advice should be free of cost to all people. And therefore even if a person is not able to pay he should not be denied medical advice.
And in the case of Ayurveda, even medical advice can help help to treat a person. As he can try various home remedies for Herbal medicines to cure himself. This is a true Holistic Si system which is all inclusive without any discrimination against financial status of the patient.
Even medicines for free for the poor. According to Ayurvedic ancient text, Vaidya or Ayurvedic doctor can keep 1/11th part of all the medicines prepared for the rich. These medicines can be used for the Welfare of the poor people.
In the end, I would say that all knowledge or wisdom that comes with the intention of healing the pain is Ayurveda. It is the science of life and no matter where it emerges and with whatever name, it should be treated with respect. And therefore it is useless to find out which is the best system of medicine. We should try to integrate all healing wisdom across the globe for the Welfare of all living creatures.
Nature works on the base of different systems. Everything happens systematically, whether it is blooming of a bud, or death of a living being.
According to Ayurveda, the body also runs according to a set of systems. Different systems are working in deep synchrony inside the body, for example, excretory system, reproduction system, digestive system, nervous system, etc. There must be something that unites these systems, probably the nervous system.
In our system, we have two parts of the nervous system autonomic and somatic. The autonomic nervous system handles the involuntary functions of the body where is somatic nervous system processes the voluntary functions.
The autonomic nervous system has further divided into two parts sympathetic and parasympathetic nervous system. These two systems are opposite to each other and help the body in different conditions. The parasympathetic nervous system is dominant where the body is in a resting position, whereas the sympathetic nervous system prepares the body for Fright-fight-flight response. One single mode cannot help the body to survive in all the conditions, as it’s not complete.
I assume that Ayurveda has three kinds of control systems that govern the body while balancing each other – vata, pitta, and kapha. They have different characteristics and lead the body successfully in different conditions.
For example, vata dosha is mobile, light, and is comparable to the presence of air in the physical world. All kinds of movements, whether it is bating of the eyelids or running, is coordinated by vata dosha.
Pitta dosha is hot and sharp nature. Naturally, it presides over all the digestive processes chemical reactions or any transformational process across the body.
Kapha Dosha offers stability and coolness to the body. It initiates and supervises any creation, formation, or incubation in the body. Kapha dosha provides shape, protection, and structure to the body. For example, the formation of all the body tissues, including bones and fats deposits that form a protective layer around the abdominal organs is a part of kapha metabolism.
Another way we can understand it in the light of political systems. A country or a nation is also a body, and it can run under different systems – democracy, communism, aristocracy, etc. Now, these systems have physical manifestations, functions, and effects, but they are not physical entities themselves. We can see what happens in an aristocracy, but we cannot see aristocracy itself as a physical entity.
Similarly, we can see the brain, spinal cord, and nerves, but we cannot see the nervous system as a physical entity.
Let us take the of an organization. There are some essential functions in all organizations, like sales, finance, and HR. These are also systems. One single function is not adequate can or can have an independent existence. For example, you cannot go selling something without an investment unless you are in a job. So, for a function like sales to exist, there has to be manufacturing/service and some investment (finance). All these functions exist as essential parts of a system and compliment each other.
In Ayurveda, doshas are systems that run the body. They are comparable to different systems in an organization like marketing, HR, finance, operations, etc. These systems are not physical entities; however, no profit-making organization can function without them.
Similarly, vata, pitta, and kapha are three systems that work in perfect harmony to produce a precise balance in body metabolism. These systems become dominant one by one in a natural cycle and run the metabolism; for example, while walking one foot goes ahead, whereas the other seems to go back, but the body as a whole, moves forward.
No human survival can live without air, water, and food. One single resource is not adequate for survival. Similarly, an individual dosha or system cannot run the body in all conditions.
Vata, pitta, and kapha are called dosha – something that maligns the body. All these three systems have a natural tendency to go wrong and produce adverse effects if left to themselves. This tendency is the defining characteristic of dosha.
The effect of these systems is visible everywhere. Consider the example of a bike. The bike runs on the right track because there is a control over it. But if you leave the handles, then the natural tenancy of the bike will be – to fall. And no matter how good the bike is, it will fall. Similarly, in the case of dosha, there is a natural tendency to get vitiated or imbalanced.
Dosha action is apparent on an inanimate object like a bike, on a stationary living creature like a plant, an animal as well as a human being.
According to Vedic sutra यथा पिंडे तथा ब्रह्मांडे (universe resembles the particle), principles of nature apply to all the objects entities in existence, whether living or nonliving. For example, a natural cycle of creation, life, aging, and death is applicable for a vehicle, house as well as any living person, even the planets.
Let us extend the example of the bike. The system that causes the forward movement of the bike, as well as the internal movement of the parts in the bike, can be termed as the vata system.
As it is natural for a dosha to create imbalance, the bike can get imbalanced if you lose control of the handles. Also, the parts of the bike face wear and tear as it runs more and more. This over-activity is the effect of excess vata.
The primary quality of vata is dryness. Dryness causes necrosis(death of cells), friction, and deterioration. In the case of a bike, long term use without oiling, constant friction, excess wear, and tear and aging.
According to Ayurveda, oil is the best substance that can be used for all kinds of vata disorders, as the oil prevents dryness and friction.
Therefore regular oiling the bike is imperative to prevent rapid wear and tear.
If we try to replicate this concept in the case of the human body, the primary organs of movement in a person are the Limbs. Let us take the example of joints. According to Ayurveda, joints are considered to be a site of vata dosha, because their primary function is movement.
Now dryness in Synovial sacs and resulting friction is the primary cause of all diseases that happen in joints, whether it is knee joint pain.
Now all doshas work together in all entities to produce a life-sustaining environment in the body. The engine of a bike processes petrol or any other fuel into the form of energy. This energy is the fundamental basis for all kinds of movement. Pitta Dosha governs this kind of chemical transformation and heat production that helps the bike as a system to run.
Fire or heat is the primary characteristic of pitta dosha. If pitta dosha is in excess, the bike will get overheated and might even catch fire.
In the context of the human body, stomach or amashaya is a site of pitta dosha. If the system for pitta gets vitiated, then acidity is one of the primary symptoms. General inflammation, redness, swelling, et cetera are some of the essential heat-borne features of imbalanced pitta dosha.
Cold and mild substances alleviate the fiery effect of pitta dosha and help in pitta imbalance.
Earlier many cars had carburetors with water that used to help in cooling the engine and prevent overheating.
The primary characteristics of kapha dosha are coolness and stability. A lack of activity or transformational heat produces inertia that is naturally cooling in nature. For example, if the bike is stationary, then it will not get heated due to combustion in the engine or change in its position continuously.
However, if the bike remains stationary for a very long time, especially in chilling weather, you might experience a lot of trouble while starting trying to start the engine. This difficulty in starting the engine is a result of excess kapha dosha, where probably the oil in the engine freezes.
In the context of the human body, a lazy person has a higher tendency to develop obesity (mass), as due to lack of activity (vata) and heat (sweating, energy conversion, etc.) the fat consumed by the body is not used. Obesity is a result of excess kapha.
However, regular exercise (vata increase) and fat to glucose metabolism (pitta increase) can help to remove excess fat (kapha decrease).
Any formation creation of stability in the body is related to Kapha dosha. The formation of new tissues comes under kapha dosha.
Pitta dosha governs any heat-based transformation, chemical reactions, or digestive processes. Autophagy or cell suicide is also a process lead by pitta dosha, where a cell digests itself.
Any movement, small or big happens with the help of vata dosha.
The entire body metabolism follows the same dosha sequence. Let us take the example of digestion –
Carbs/sugars are the primary sources of energy and nutrition for the body.
Kapha Dosha governs the first part of digestion – sugar metabolism, as the sweetness is one of its central features. Sugar release in the blood creates a cooling effect and stimulate the satiety centers in the brain. Also, it causes drowsiness(stability-sleep) after meals.
The middle part of the digestive procedure focuses on the digestion of proteins that are reduced to amino acids. Acidity or sourness is one of the primary features of Pitta dosha. Therefore this phase of digestion is governed by pitta dosha.
The last part of digestion focuses on fat digestion. Fat digestion produces bitter or katu rasa(fatty acids and glycerol are bitter) the effect of vata dosha in the body. And the digestion of fatty acids comes under vata dosha.
Digestion is just one example. All the metabolic Processes happen under the same sequence of dosha cycle. Even the incubation and spread of diseases in the body is governed by this same dosa cycle, depending on the range of imbalanced dosha. Dosha and body metabolism
If we come to the concept of body types, there are primarily three kinds of body types vat, pitta, and kapha dominant.
Let us revert to the example of an organization with three functions sales finance and HR.
All the organizations have all these three essential functions. The organization is Bank; then the finance will be the primary feature of the organization. Financial activities will dominate this organization.
if this organization is an advertising firm, then the dominant function of the organization will be marketing.
If this organization is an HR consultancy, the dominant feature of the organization will be HR based activities.
All three types of organizations have all three functions. However, one feature dominates all the others. This dominating function gives a unique organizational culture and characteristics of the organization.
Similarly, Prakriti or body constitution is formed by tridosha. Three dosha are present in all the human body’s. However, one of them becomes the dominating feature of the metabolism. This dominant dosha defines the Prakriti or body type of the individual.
Everything, living or non-living has a prakrati or character.
For example, we can say that bike or any vehicle is vata dominant(major characteristics, design, and function is movement), oven or a blast furnace is pitta dominant(primary nature, design, and purpose is around chemical transformation and heat) and lake is kapha dominant (primary features, design function is stability and coolness.
Vata, pitta and kapha dominant people are similar to respectively; a vehicle(always on the move), an oven (high processing capacity), and lake(cool and stable).
Daily Dosha Cycle
The time of the day is also divided according to the dosha dominant in that part of the day. For example, kapha dosha controls first one-third part of the day. Another one-third of the day comes under the control of pitta dosha, and the last one-third of the day comes under vata dosa.
Similarly, the night also has 3 phases.
For this reason, Ayurveda considers morning to be the best time for studies as kapha is the factor for strong memory (stability).
The best time to have the biggest meal of the day is noon (pitta period) as the digestion at this time is at its best.
And you must avoid excess labor or heavy food in the evening, as vata dosha is the factor for tiredness and indigestion.
Also, you will find that most of the breathing and mucous related disorders, numbness, stiffness, etc. occur during the morning time.
Whereas acidity, inflammation, and other pitta related disorders flare-up during the midday.
And vata related disorders like joint pain, muscle cramps, headache, tiredness, etc. happen during the end of the day.
Seasonal Dosha Cycle
Dosha has natural cyclic vitiation throughout the year. For example, kapha Dosha vitiation occurs during the spring. You will find that spring is the season where we can see maximum mucus related disorders.
Sharad or early winter is the time of pitta prakop or vitiation. Therefore early winter is the time where you will see aggravation in pitta related disorders like pimples, acidity, inflammatory diseases like psoriasis, etc.
Varsha or rainy season is the time dominated by vata dosha vitiation. Therefore in the rainy season, we all can observe that all kinds of body pain, headache, migraine, joint pains et cetera get aggravated in this season.
Dosha are everywhere in the body. According to Ayurveda, Lifespan of an individual has three parts – kapha-childhood, pitta-youth, and vata -old age.
Childhood is all about growing up. For any growth, you need nutrition, stability, and peace. Kapha dosha is the spring of all these qualities. Link qualities of kapha dosha
Pitta Dosha governs the young age. Youth is the transformational stage of life. The young person is called Vardhaman in Ayurveda. The word Vardhaman means the one who is growing or advancing. A young person is not growing anymore in structure, but he improves every day in his experience and knowledge. Medha or intellect is a quality bestowed by Pitta dosha. This intellectual growth is the real advancement for a human being.
Young people have excellent digestion, lots of energy and best immunity, thanks to dominating pitta dosha.
Vata dosha governs the last stage of the life old age. A mature person is called vriddha in Ayurveda. This word means the one who has reached complete advancement or growth. An older adult is like a ripened fruit that naturally dries up and breaks away from the branch. In this stage, the physical structure starts deterioration; however, the intellectual level has reached its zenith.
These three dosa are the Trinity of the body they are like Brahma(creator), Vishnu (sustainer), and Shiva (destroyer).
Dosha and Disease Susceptibility
According to the above dosha sequence in the lifecycle, you will find that most of the kapha related disorders like cough cold, etc. occur during childhood. Children are Highly susceptible to mucus are respiratory system associated disorders as compared to youth or older adults.
Similarly, youth are most susceptible to pitta related disorders like pimples, hyperacidity, inflammation.
And in the end, the elderly are most susceptible to vata related disorders like dementia, hair fall, and all kinds of body pains.
Dryness is the primary quality of vata dosha. For this reason, we find that older people have excessively dry and wrinkled skin, dryness related problems like body pain joint pain. They also have weak digestion because of recessive pitta dosha.
Ayurveda focuses on the tridosha concept for body formation, structure, physiology, and pathology. Some classical Ayurvedic texts say that there is nothing else in the body metabolism except dosha. Everything that happens in the body is a function of the cyclic effect of the dosha accumulation, vitiation, and stabilization.
I am trying to understand Ayurveda myself. However, according to my current experience, the curative effects of Ayurveda are absolutely incredible. If you have a query or doubt, please let me know. It will help to improve my knowledge.
There is tons of “Ayurvedic” advice floating online. And they are meant to direct you to some “product”.However, many times they do not have any base in classical Ayurvedic text. I hope to create videos and animations on the authentic Ayurvedic text, with a logical explanation.
But, Ayurved is healing wisdom. It should be free of marketing clutter. I want people to know that they can keep healthy without any expensive medicines, health supplements, therapies, or exotic herbs. No one needs to buy health. Health is an innate gift given to all. Ayurved teaches us to preserve the gift!
This is a short video(1 min) to emphasize on the need of authentic Ayurvedic information for the layman. I hope that you enjoy watching it!
Initially, I will focus on the basics and preventive measures. I hope that these videos help people to find natural ways to prevent and cure diseases. We need to understand that true health, beauty, and happiness come from within, and not without. I want to make these creations freely accessible to all. If you like my content and feel that I can make a difference, please contribute on https://www.patreon.com/theayurvedachannel / Paypal (firstname.lastname@example.org)
A migraine patient should avoid vata vitiation at all costs. And therefore he should avoid the following factors –
Excessive indulgence in sexual activity
Heavy manual labor
Controlling natural urges like defecation, hunger, sleep, burping etc.
Exposure to extreme temperature fluctuations
Cold water bath
Excessive use of a hairdryer
Exposure to harsh sunlight, strong wind, etc. for a long duration.
Eating extremely cold/hot food together in a meal – e.g., ice-cream with soup/hot chocolate.
Frequent mid-meal snacking
Cold food like Ice-creams, soft drinks, etc.
Eating excessive amount of dry food
Digging nose (if you do)
Any intoxicant – drugs, weed, etc.
Sleeping in the day time or daily light transition period (sunrise/sunset)
Eating heavy food after sunset or before sunrise
All these factors disrupt the healthy metabolism of the body. They can trigger excess mucus production and clog the channels (ice creams, soft drinks), create dryness and lose of moisture (manual labour, alcohol etc.) and thus vitiate vata dosha as a result.
You might also have your unique triggers for migraine stimulation. I know a person who gets a migraine attack whenever he consumes Ashwagandha (an Ayurvedic medicinal herb). Be careful about your triggers and try to avoid them till the treatment protocol is over.
What to Do
Some of the Lifestyle changes highly recommended for migraine patients are –
Brahma Muhurata Jagarana
Waking up early morning before sunset can solve more than 50% aggrarvation problems in migraine. However, as stated earlier, you should take it easy and go for a gradual change over a few months.
Usha Paan is a traditional morning ritual of drinking water. Ideally, you should store water in the copper vessel overnight and drink it in the morning. You can drink water normal or lukewarm according to your comfort and the external climatic condition.
The above link for ushapaan is the primary method. The advanced form of Usha paan drinking water in the morning is done not through the mouth but the nasal passage. Before the advanced stage, you must practice neti kriya, which is another important migraine prevention factor. I will have a future post on this procedure.
In this method, you insert the lukewarm water through the nasal cavity(nostrils) instead of the oral cavity (mouth).
After regular use practice of Advanced ushapaan. After daily use of advanced ushapaan, You will notice a definite decrease in the intensity and of Migraine within one month.
After you are comfortable with the basic stage, you can move to drink water through the nose, just like an elephant. Just like yoga, Ayyurvedic procedures also emerge from the nature. And elephants have the most remarkable memory among all animals, even better than humans!
Kill the Pain
Try to avoid pain killers for migraine pain. They don’t kill the pain. Pain killers hide the pain and kill our liver and kidney in exchange. Here are some alternatives that might help you combat the pain in a simple manner –
Nasya (painkiller nasal drops) According to Ayurveda, the nose is the entrance to the head. And nasal drops are the primary treatment for all kinds of head disorders, right from the common cold to facial paralysis. Nasal drops can also effectively bring down the migraine pain without any side-effects. They have a faster action as compared to the medicines that go through the oral route.
Precaution – all nasal drops should be used at an average temperature, except cow’s Ghee. Solidified cow’s Ghee should be heated to a mildly high temperature to make it liquid again, before using it as a nasal drops.
For use in mild migraine pain or a pre-migraine aura Almond oil: 5-6 drops Cow’s Ghee: 5-6 drops
For severe migraine pain Anu tailam: 5-6 drops This Ayurvedic preparation might cause pain in the nasal passage. However, it effectively clears the mucus and reduces swelling in the nasal vessels. In fact, initially the pain is so sharp that it will put aside your migraine pain, ha ha ha, just kidding! I have personally used it many times and have found it incredibly useful. But yes, it does pain initially. To get used to the pain, you can start with 1-2 drops and gradually increase the dosage.
It is beneficial in short term pain control as well as long term migraine relief. In fact, Acharya Charak recommends use of Anu Taila everyday as a prevention of all imaginable disorders in head region, right from hair-loss to dementia. If you are fine with the piercing feeling, you can use it even before the migraine starts.
This is the savior preparation for all migraine patients. Shat-bindu Tailam is a stronger and more effective option than Anu Tailam. And it also pains a little as Anu tailam.
You can safely use these nasal drops SOS in case of migraine pain. In future posts, I will cover their systematic intake for complete relief from migraine.
I sincerely hope that this information brings you the best of Ayurvedic benefits.
Now, as we know no about how migraine happens according to Ayurveda, we can look at the Ayurvedic treatment of migraine.
This migraine self-healing protocol is derived from following classical Ayurvedic text – Charak Samhita, Ashtang Hridya, Bhaishajya Ratnavali, and Yogaratnakara. The treatment methods like nasal drops, ear drops, etc. have been used in the Indian traditional healthcare regimen for many centuries. They are safe and tested. However, I do not have a scientific data-based support this claim right now. Therefore, kindly use this information after consulting your physician.
Ayurveda considers prakrati or body type as one of the fundamental factors for any treatment. Your body is unique, and it may have individual requirements. This treatment provides suitable options for various body types. However, most of the practices are safe and effective for all. The medicines suggested are classical preparations and have a significant effect on all prakrati.
Ayurvedic migraine treatment is a two-pronged as it works on two dimensions mental and physical. Ideally, the migraine treatment must start with counseling and mindfulness training. However, I won’t expect you to meditate when you are reeling with pain. So let’s start with the easiest, practical, and effective procedures that you can follow at home. I assume that after a few weeks, you would in a better position to handle a post on Ayurvedic manas chikitsa (mind treatment) for migraine. Meanwhile, you might like to check some posts on mindfulness.
So, let’s kick-start the migraine self-healing protocol. I will cover the following parts in each blog with sufficient details.
Ayurvedic Nasal Drops
Ayurvedic Ear Drops
Ayurvedic Head Massage
Ayurvedic Mouth Filling
Ayurvedic general medicines and home remedies
Now food is the basic input that decides the output in the form of health or disease. And migraine needs a careful selection of foodstuff.
First of all, it is crucial to know what not to eat – Please more details in these links –
All the above recommendations work for migraine patients as well as for healthy people. However, I would like to stress the idea of “Satmya.” You are the best judge of what suits you and what does not. Listen to your body, and it will help you to make the best choices.
Migraine Special Diet
With the above indications, let’s dive deep into a diet that will help you to balance your dosha. Vata dosha vitiation is the fundamental cause of migraines and all similar disorders. Therefore, a comprehensive treatment of migraines is based on achieving a vata balance. And vata balancing diet is the first step towards an effective and permanent migraine relief.
Week 1 – Basic Detox
I assume that you have reasonable stamina to follow the essential detox. Also, I assume that you are not suffering from severe lifestyle disorders like diabetes, Hypertension, etc. In case of any severe disease, kindly consult for a personalized regimen.
The most crucial sutra for a migraine patient is to eat only when hungry (unless you are extremely weak).
Basic Fruit Detox –
Fruit detox is applicable for summer, and spring only. It is best for the obese, people suffering from compulsive eating disorders, excessive hunger, anorexia, and depression.
One of the best food for migraine patients is fruits (plant products that can be consumed raw, without any cooking). Try to stay on fruits for this week, if possible. You can boil, bake, fry, or simply eat them raw. Local, seasonal, and organic fruits are the best for consumption. In case you are not able to get fresh fruits; you can also try dry fruits like raisins, dates, cashew, almond, dried berries, etc.
All the foods must be consumed; you must ensure that the food that you eat s adequately ripened. Consumption of raw fruits can aggravate the migraine problem. Also, do not make them into juices, shakes, etc. Eat them along with their fiber content for the best results. Avoid making milk shakes. Keep your diet strictly limited to fruits.
The use of Almonds is very beneficial for migraine patients. You must soak the elements overnight, peel their coat in the morning and eat with Rock Candy for the best benefit. You can also similarly use walnut and raisins.
Alternatives to Fresh Fruits: Some people have kapha problems like cold, stuffy nose, congestion, etc. if they consume fruits at night or early morning. However, this is abnormal metabolism, and one should try to correct the same. But before you fix it, the alternatives for dinner are – warm milk (A2 organic milk, preferably), dry fruits, boiled potatoes/sweet potatoes/beetroots, tapioca, carrots, etc. Also, these options might be useful to people who have meager availability of edible fruits.
Fruits to avoid – raw (unripe) or artificially ripened fruits, non-seasonal, exotic fruits, inorganic fruits, Artocarpus lacucha, (also known as monkey fruit, or Monkey Jack or barhar), water caltrop, grapes,and tamarind
Fruit Detox Routine Day 1 – Normal breakfast and lunch, change in dinner Day 2 – Change breakfast and dinner, Normal Lunch Day 3 – Change all three meals Day 4 – Only fruit/boiled vegetable meals Day 5 – Only fruit/boiled vegetable meals Day 6 – Normal Lunch, Fruit-based breakfast and dinner Day 7 – Normal Lunch, breakfast, fruit-based dinner
I would suggest that you follow this detox once a week after the first week, throughout the migraine treatment protocol.
Basic Ghee Detox
Ghee is Indian Clarified butter than helps to normalize all the body functions. It is THE BEST GENERAL SOLUTION for migraine pain in Ayurveda. It is especially applicable for winter and autumn. However, it can be safely used in all seasons and body types. Ghee detox is best for weak, underweight, recuperating(from physical trauma), people with low stamina, and high hunger.
Ghee: Ghee is Deepan, pachan(appetizer, digestive) in nature. It helps to balance all three dosha in the body. Ghee is one of the best anti-toxin in Ayurveda. Ghee detox will ensure that that dryness in your intestine and overall body is reduced, and your nerves are less hyper excited.
Consumption of ghee at esp. at night time helps to balance Prana vayu, a subtype of vata dosha, which is primarily involved in migraines. For more information on how the timing of a medicine affects performance, please visit How to use Ayurvedic Supplements
Ghee Detox Routine Day 1 – Normal breakfast and lunch, 10-20 ml Ghee in dinner Day 2 – 20-40 ml Ghee in breakfast/dinner, Normal Lunch Day 3 – Change all three meals (20-50 ml depending on the hunger, e.g you might be hungrier in winter than in summer) Day 4 – Only Ghee meals Day 5 – Only Ghee meals Day 6 – Normal Lunch, Ghee-based breakfast and dinner Day 7 – Normal Lunch, breakfast, Ghee-based dinner
Ghee intake is such a reliable and powerful procedure that it can eliminate migraine in the long run, without any other effort or medication. People with obesity can also practice this method. However, they must ensure to eat only when truly hungry and consume only 1-2 tsp of ghee at a time. Consider this Ghee detox as a mini keto diet that will help to rejuvenate your body.
Later, as you heal, you can also use Ghee for cooking purposes. Please ensure that it is A2 organic ghee for the best results. If not, then go for whatever ghee is available. Salted Indian butter available online also produces reasonable cleansing effects.
You can also consume good quality medicated ghee or Ayurvedic oils. Some good options are Baladi thailam, Mahanarayan tail, Brahmi ghrita, kalyanaka ghrita, Ashwagandhadi ghrita, puran ghrita et cetera. However, consult your physician before trying any of these.
These two detoxes can help to make a good foundation for further treatment. However, please make sure that you choose the detox according to the season, and your body condition. Also, it is important to avoid eating anything else during this detox. If you find it very tough, keep the lunch intact and change breakfast and dinner for 30 days to achieve the same result.
Also, you can choose to go for fruit detox and then try ghee detox as well. However, ghee detox is superior to fruit detox.
It is vital to ensure that you have the right amount of appetizers and digestive herbs to digest and absorb the oily food/Ghee recommended in migraine treatment. Also, mild yoga exercises will help the lubrication from Ghee to spread throughout the body and relieve dryness.
Various factors decide how much food you need, two of them are the most important – Quality of food, and quality of digestive system. And it is not about calories. You see, a sea shell contains an incredible amount of calcium, but I cannot eat it, except for Ayurvedic kapardaka bhasma. Likewise, calories are the amount of energy that a food substance can release. It does not promise the amount that can be actually digested and absorbed. It differs from person to person. So, a food that contains 100 calories might release 90 or 50 or even 2 calories after digestion.
Ayurveda also considers the energy required to digest and absorb the food. Therefore, if your food releases 90 calories after digestion, but consumes 70 calories for the entire process, then it brings little profit to the body. And what if it releases 2 calories after the whole process. It is a massive loss for the body.
And you will find many people who eat a lot of food but always feel short of energy. They feel weak and lethargic. However, a poor person eating half the amount might have more vitality.
So, the first thing, food is not about calories, neither about the amount of nutrition it might contain. Nutrition is about how much you can absorb from it. Rest is waste.
Quality of food
This is an important factor. Let us take the example of a hybrid car that can run on petrol and electricity. Electricity is a more efficient fuel, it produces no unnecessary heat or combustion , therefore wear and tear is much less when the car runs on electricity. On the other hand, petrol produces energy through combustion and heat and the rate of deterioration in petrol mode will be much higher.
For a perfect metabolic balance, we need to eat food that produces more energy with less effort. Food that contributes to health and not to diseases.
Step 1- Increase the Prana
According to Ayurveda, every food that you eat has prana or the life force. And this prana is absorbed via food. So basically food is like a fuel for the body. According to Ayurveda, hunger, thirst and sleep are three natural diseases that can be cured and probably we don’t even need to eat, however that another topic.
We should eat food that has prana or the life force. And accordingly, your food can be full of prana or completely devoid of it. How you earn and the way you procure your food also makes a difference.
In short, your food should be procured with benevolence, hard work and through non- violent means.
There are many ways to do it. But the best always through the nature. Organivally grown and naturally ripened fruits are the best because they have the best digestibility in the body. Besides, fruits have minimum fire element or agni tatva, because they are not cooked. They are more stable and bring their stability to the body also.
Other means is cooking. In terms of cooking, food should ideally be cooked slowly. I always prefer solar cooked food. Its aroma and taste is incredible too.
Larger surface area
This is a very important factor in Ayurved. That’s why most of the medicines are ground to a very fine powder or paste. Larger surface area provides bigger opportunity for enzymes to act.
Therefore, my grandma used to tell me to chew the almonds for a long time. I guess the persistent action of saliva makes the nutrients more bio-available. Besides, traditionally in India, almonds are soaked in water overnight for better absorption. Also, soaked almonds are made into a very fine paste to ensure more surface area for absorption. And that’s the key to the amount of food that we need. I know a master who can survive on one meal(lunch) in 24 hours, and he never stuffs himself! I assume that his body can absorb more than 90% of the food he eats.
Typically, if we have low absorption capacity, we won’t absorb much from the food we eat, no matter how nutritious it is. Sometimes, nothing at all. The modern treatment approach focuses on multiplying nutrition, for example, we have fortified milk, butter, bread, in fact, everything. But does it solves the problem?
There is a child who is just not interested in studying. How will it help if you fortify his resources by adding graduation textbooks? And what we do to the body by fortifying food is worse than this.
Ayurveda says that intake of heavy food or difficult to digest food is akin to pouring massive logs of wood on a small fire. And guess what happens! When we expose more fortified food to a weakened digestive system, we tax it to digest something heavier than average food. And gradually, the fire gives up. This may lead to a host of digestive problems – chronic indigestion, constipation, burping, bloating, and so on.
If you have lousy digestion or absorption, then the solution is not in giving more fortified food. Now if a child is not interested in studies, the answer is not in getting him more books, but to inspire him to learn. When someone is willing to learn, he can create his own resources. So, the solution is in making the body hungry and ready for food, instead of supplying heavy doses of indigestible food.
Precaution for anorexia Here, the recommendation to eat only when hungry does not apply to people with anorexia. Instead, they can try eating Ayurvedic digestives that can help to remove the toxins from the system and bring back healthy hunger.
How to kindle real hunger? Hunger varies according to the climatic conditions, age, physical activity, and state of mind. If you stay in a cold climate, your body will require more heat-producing activity. And the most prominent heat-producing event is digestion. Therefore all people living in cold weather usually have good digestion, unless they stretch their physiology with wrong food and lifestyle.
And if you can, you can shift to a colder location for some time to improve your overall metabolism.
Hunger typically diminishes with age. It is a natural phenomenon. We can assist the body by reducing the load of digestion. Therefore, we must modify our food according to our age, and this is esp very important after 35 or 40 years of age. Ideally, a person beyond 60 years should stop eating oily, heavy, and spicy food.
Ideally, such a person should try to consume mostly fruits and vegetables. Vegetables can be roasted, baked, or boiled. Elderly people should refrain from grain consumption after the sunset. However, due to rapid degradation in community health, we should follow these rules right after we turn 40. In fact, I have practically started living solely on fruits and vegetables, and it does make you feel more alive, try it!!!
One of the surprising facts is that you do not gain weight if you are physically inactive, and also you do not lose weight by exercise. These are just market making concepts, they help in selling weight loss products and gym memberships. The only thing that can make you fat is eating more than required food, nothing else. If you are sensitive towards your body, it will tell you when it is enough or when food is not needed. However, unfortunately, these recommendations are overruled in favor of taste sensations.
State of mind seriously affects hunger. Sadness, anxiety, stress, anger, hatred, etc. can kill the natural appetite. You can have the best hunger and effortless digestion when you are neither too happy or too sad, but at peace with yourself.
In fact, a peaceful mind is the most fundamental requirement for healthy digestion. A tranquil state of mind does not interfere with the regular hormonal system. Peace in mind stimulates the parasympathetic system and ensures the best digestion.
That’s why Ayurveda recommends that if you are not peaceful, skip the meal but do not eat. The food consumed with an imbalanced state of mind is no less than toxin for the body.
So, the essential requirement of healthy digestion is – peaceful mind
Fruits (fruits grow on trees and do not require any human effort except planting, sometimes not even that)
If you don’t have fruits, eat very less amount of whatever you have. The great sage and Ayurveda pioneer Vagbhatt said: “eat healthy, eat less and eat according to the season.” And that’s the reason why poor are the blessed ones. They are in the hands of God, and God does not allow them to ruin their health by eating useless fancy food. Let us be in God’s hands and have a great, healthy, and fulfilling life!
We all have a notion that eating three times a day is essential. But it is not so. I am not saying that we should eat once a day. But the best approach is to be aware of your body and your hunger. Most of us have a basic rule of three times meal, and we follow it blindly. I have seen many people following the same diet habits that they developed when they were children or youth. You must realize that your body is no longer in the growing mode. And we are not trees! So, according to Ayurveda, the food requirements of the body change over time. They are different for kids, youth, and older adults. Here, I will discuss the basics ideal dietary habit applicable for all. And surprisingly, the perfect diet is minimalistic in nature. It is precise and does not overburden the body with unnecessary digestion.
Digestion – Seat of Agni
Let’s understand that digestion is like the general maintenance of a house. It provides essential nutrition, grows and maintains body tissues, etc. Now imagine if you have to spend all your time and resources to maintaining the house. You will have no time for anything else. Some people have a huge house, big cars, properties, etc. and their whole time and money are sucked in maintaining THINGS. They might realize in the end that they gained nothing at all.
The human body is a tool for enlightenment. However, we spend all our energy on earning and eating food. Worse, we have junk food that adds an extra expense of medicines in later life. How is it any better than animals who live in a forest? Probably they are better off as they don’t have to pay EMI or mortgage.
Besides, even the blast furnace is cooled off for some time after burning. It helps in repair and maintenance. However, today, our digestive system has no respite. We keep pouring food in it day in and day out. Most of the people are not even hungry when they eat.
What happens when you eat without hunger?
Now, let me tell you what happens when you eat without hunger. When Your blood sugar drops, the brain senses the low availability of sugar and trigger hunger. It sends signals to the stomach to secrete digestive enzymes. And these digestive enzymes irritate the stomach lining. That’s how we feel hungry. In the same time, all other organs like liver, pancreas, salivary glands all prepare themselves for best digestion and absorption.
But imagine what will happen if you are eating without hunger. Your blood sugar is already normal. The blood does not need any more sugar. There is no signal from the brain to secrete digestive enzymes. So your stomach is also not ready for digestion. But still, you pour unrequired food in your system.
Under-digested food rots inside us!
Have you ever tried frying something without heating the oil properly? If you do, you will realize that the food put in low-temperature oil absorbs more oil than required and yet does not gets adequately cooked. A similar phenomenon happens to the food that enters the digestive tract without hunger invitation.
Not properly digested food is not a big problem. The bigger question is what happens after that. A proper amount of digestive juices prevent rapid food decay in the warm internal environment. However, because of no hunger, food does not get an adequate amount of these juices. It starts to rot inside the alimentary canal. According to Ayurveda, such food produces toxins by rotting in the body. Worse are the effects if you have chronic constipation. Imagine the number of toxins released in the system because of undigested food.
The sugar tsunami
And still a bigger problem is the unnecessary sugar release. Now, this food is reluctantly absorbed by the intestines, and the sugar consumed is released into the blood. Blood sugar is already at a normal level. But the extra intake causes a sugar tsunami in the blood. An overworked pancreas tries to control the blood sugar. But how many times can it control such sudden surges? All secretory organs, including pancreas, need some time to prepare good quality digestive juices as well as insulin.
And this problem further snowballs when we snack frequently, and the worst products to consume are sweets, chocolates, etc. With frequent sugar surges in the body, the tissues get acclimatized to high sugar levels. A dissatisfied Pancreas resigns to the status-quo and insulin secretions steadily declines.
The high sugar levels are also related to hypertension. According to Ayurveda, madhura or sweet rasa vitiates kapha dosha. Kapha dosha is the causal factor for blockages. According to recent researches, low glycemic load (GL) naturally results in low BP as well. Therefore we can link abnormal high or frequent food intake with hypertension.
Feeding Cancer Cells
Worse is still to come! High sugar levels are associated with cancer formation. Cancer cells feed on the high sugar content, where the healthy cells lose their vitality. So, if you are not happy with diabetes, hypertension, etc., you might get cancer. Cancer cells are present in all creatures, but the internal body environment is not conducive for them to thrive. However, with abnormal eating habits, we make an inviting environment for all kinds of diseases.
Consider a corrupt society. As society corrodes in its moral values, all kinds of evil find it easy to thrive. The educational institutes, healthcare, judiciary everything will get corrupted. And good people will find it hard to survive. However, the decision lies in our hands, we need to decide what we want to invite inside consciously.
So, it comes out that if you eat less, eat only when you are correctly hungry, you will need less food, fewer medicines. You will have a more productive and satisfying life.
Ushapaan is a very interesting concept. Water, when consumed, does not stimulate the digestive process and most of the time it is not digested, it is only detoxified. Most of the detoxification happens in the liver after water absorption. Therefore, when we drink an extra amount of water (for example – more than 1 lit at a time), this water rapidly gushes through the intestines like a flush, without being held-up for digestion.
Intestine is like a carpet with the fine brush like structures called villi. villi help to increase the surface area of the intestine. Villi are made from small folds in the intestine. In this way, intestine acts as stretchable jeans that where villi provide the required stretch whenever we overstuff over stomach with food. But the problem occurs when food is stuck in the middle of these villi. Let us take the example of the concealed drainage pipes in the plumbing system of a building. They never get cleaned and one can imagine the level of cleanliness that can be found in them!
Normally, continuous splashes of mucus try to maintain the cleanliness of the intestines. But with the current dietary habits of haphazard eating, it becomes extremely difficult for the body to maintain the desired level of internal hygiene. And this decay of food particles trapped in the intestines contribute to the toxins in the body, mentioned in Ayurveda as “ama”.
Water is the best purifier that cleans an object (fire is the ultimate purifier, which eliminates the object and reduces it to the basic structure, fit for reconstruction). We can use water to clean our intestines just the way we use to clean our kitchen sink. When we drink a large amount of water, it rushes through the intestines. This force of water helps to clean the food stuck and decaying in the intestinal folds. So, the first point is to drink a huge and comfortable amount of water in order to ensure a cleaning effect on the intestines.
Now, there is a lot of information around water cleansing and its method. Many people suggest that one should stand and drink water as the gravitational pull helps the water to move with greater momentum inside the Intestines and clears away the wanted material. However, Ayurveda strongly recommends that one should always drink or eat anything only in a sitting position. The hypothesis behind this suggests that when water enters the Intestines while the person is in standing position, the rapid gush of water or food can damage the soft internal lining or remove the protective mucosal layer in the Intestines. Besides, in the long term, it can result in many disorders like an abdominal pouch, hernia, etc. Therefore it is important to drink water in a sitting position only.
Another important factor is the temperature of the water. But the temperature is a factor of the time of water consumption. On a sunny day, one can drink normal water. However, it is always advisable to drink Luke warm water, something compatible with the internal temperature of the body. Chilled water is an absolute no-no for water detox. Lukewarm water helps to dissolve excess mucus and remove the food stuck in it.
Time of the water detox is the most important of all factors. The temperature, amount and the effect of water are entirely dependent on the time of consumption. Here we finally the concept of Ushapaan dawns on us. The term “Usha” means Dawn or the time of sunrise. The term “paan” means to drink. This Usha or dawn is the best time for water detox. The time before Ushakaal is said to be “Brahma muhurta”. The term “Brahma” refers to the creator. This is the time when all the dosha in the body is normally balanced. The slate of body’s metabolism is clean. According to Ayurveda, this is the best time to induce any changes, take medicines, meditate, etc. The water detox should be done before or just at the time of dawn. This water is better able to clean as there is no digestive process going on in the Intestines early in the morning. Ideally, ushakaal is 4–6 am in the morning. And this is the time for Ushapaan.
Besides, the best benefit is that Ushapaan ensures that intestines are clean early morning, ready to take new food challenge for the day. The new food does not mingle with the old decaying food particles. Ushapaan also ensures good quality hunger. Good hunger is the indication of a healthy metabolism.
Besides, Ushapaan with normal or cool water during the dawn stimulates the nerve endings in the intestines. This stimulation reaches the brain and it helps in an early adjustment of temperature, before the sunrise. Waking up in Brahmamuhurat also has a similar effect.
After sunrise, temperature regulation depends more on the water absorbed from the intestines. This process can dry and harden the fecal matter and cause constipation. Ushapaan also hydrates the body before the sunrise so that as the temperature regulation shifts towards the sweating mode after sunrise, there is no scarcity of water in the outer layers of the body. Because of enough moisture, there is no metabolic prompt to extract more and more moisture from the fecal matter. In fact, Ushapaan can remove the fecal matter before the sunrise. Thus there is no extra heat load on the body after sunrise.
Therefore Ushapaan is the second most important lifestyle factor that can prevent and cure all kinds of constipations. For first factor visit the next blog.
For chronic constipation, it is advisable to drink warm water. Chronic constipation occurs in all kinds of people. However, vata dominant prakrati people get such type of constipation more frequently. Besides, they have more tendency to form very hard stool.
These are some of the limited benefits of Ushapaan. However, in short, we can safely say that it positively touches the entire body. It provides fluid for the internal bath of the body. It is very important as Saint Kabir said – What is the use of external purification is there is no internal cleanliness?
Ushapaan was induced as a religious ceremony in Vedic Hindu community. This is the reason why it was preserved and followed for a long time, even by people who no longer understood its essence or health benefits. Now it is time for us to reinvent this ancient ceremony and practice it religiously!
An advanced level of ushapaan is drinking the water through nose. I will elaborate more on it very soon.
There is some food that can be consumed regularly but only in small quantities or after a short break. Salt is the best example of such food. Too little salt or too much salt, both will spoil the dish. But just the appropriate amount can do wonders to both the taste and the health.
3 such food items are described in Charak Samhita, that might or might not be taken every day, but should be consumed only in a very small quantity.
Pippali (Long pepper)
Pippali (Long pepper)
Ayurvedic properties of Pippali
Pippali or long pepper is light to digest, unctuous, sharp (rapid action), bitter with sweet vipaka and anushnasheet virya (not too hot or cold temperament).
Appropriate Use of Pippali
Looking at the qualities, it looks good for everyday use. Pippali is also used in many ayurvedic medicines. But, according to Acharya Charak, it should not be used every day because, after a long use, it has a tendency of increasing phlegm formation.
Excessive Use of Pippali
Regular consumption of Pippali is said to vitiate both Kapha and pitta. It does not pacify Vata also. It is beneficial to use Pippali only for a short duration and in small quantity, as prescribed by a trained Ayurveda physician.
Ayurvedic properties of Acids (Charak Samhita)
Acid or Amla( Sanskrit) stimulates the taste buds, fuels the digestion, causes weight gain, increases the mental alertness, strengthens the sense organs, increases strength, balances the Vata, satisfies the heart, stimulates salivation, extracts the ingested food towards stomach( as a result of salivation) or extracts from the ingested food, lubricates/moistens the alimentary canal, nourishes the body. Acid is light, hot temperament and unctuous in nature.
Appropriate Use of Acid
Acidic food products such as aerated drinks, canned food, Tamarind, Vinegar, soya sauce, citric acid, lemon juice etc. should not be used in large quantity every day. They as be used as flavoring or seasoning agent in minimum required quantity. Also, elderly people should refrain from using such sour tasting edibles because these food items vitiate Vata and can cause joint pain, general body pain, and swelling. Too much of acid consumption should be strictly avoided during autumn, summer, and springtime for a healthy long life because these are the seasons where the body is the weakest. (Effect of Ritu (seasons) on Dosha)
According to the ideal food habits, the acidic food should be consumed in the middle of the meal as it will stimulate the digestion of the sweet food eaten earlier, it will kill the satiety generated by the sweet food, reheat the digestive tract and promote lubrication in the alimentary canal.
According to Ayurveda, a complete meal contains all 6 kinds of tastes (sweet, sour, salty, bitter, pungent and astringent). Therefore, some acid should be there in the diet every day in very small quantities. But in order to ensure that we do not need to add extremely sour food items like tamarind, vinegar, raw mango etc. to our meals. Some good sources of acids that can be used every day are Awla (Indian gooseberry), Orange, Sweet lemon, Citron, Pomegranate (slightly sour) etc.
Excessive Use of Acid
It is important to note that all these symptoms are caused only due to excessive use of acid. Slight use of acidic substances by a healthy person will not cause the following symptoms. However, if the person already has vitiated pitta or is suffering from some disease, even a small amount of acid might cause significant damage, just like a small push to anyone standing on the brink of a pond might make him fall in the water.
Excessive use of acidic substances in daily food intake can cause a lot of problems –
It can affect dental health. An acidic environment in the mouth can promote dental cavity.
Acidic food over-excites the muscles in the eyes and causes them to shut. Such overstimulation might cause eye disorders.
Acidic food overstimulates the nerves in the skin and causes goosebumps.
Acidic food increases Pitta Dosha. Along with it, it creates all kinds of pitta problems like inflammation, swelling, balding etc.
Acidic food can cause blood disorders.
Acidic food causes inflammations in the muscular tissue
Acidic food slows down the metabolism
Acidic food causes swelling in the body of the degenerated, injured, thin and weak.
Apart from the above-stated disorders, excessive use of acids causes early hair fall, damage to eyesight and impotence. It is interesting that Charak Samhita specifically mentions that people in eastern countries (China, Thailand etc.) use too much acid in the food. This the reason for the specific facial features(chinky eyes) found in them (Charak Samhita: Viman Sthana – 17). However, earlier even the oriental people did not use vinegar and soya sauce every day. Their traditional daily diet was mainly rice and vegetables only. According to Confucius “Although there are plenty of meats, they should not be cooked more than the staple food.” Staple food here is the rice and the vegetables.
Salt is a good digestive. It serves as a great humidifying agent. It stimulates the hunger. It helps to remove the Kapha . It helps in the formation of feces in the intestines. It is fast acting, spreads quickly in the body. It promotes the expulsion of the feces. It is a declogging agent. It eliminates vata too. It prevents the accumulation of Dosha. It can overpower all other tastes. It stimulates the saliva secretion. It is not heavy to digest, but unctuous and hot temperament.
Appropriate Use of Salt
Salt should be used in minimum possible quantities. It can be used in almost all the dishes, but its amount should be minuscule. One should never consume excess salt.
Excessive Use of Salt
Excessive use of salt can cause serious disorders in the body –
pollutes the pitta dosha and blood tissue. It can cause all kinds of blood and skin related disorders.
increases the heat and thirst in the body. Excess salt can even cause fainting.
can cause wasting in the muscles and promotes accumulation of poisonous substances in the body.
can cause loosening of the gums.
can cause impotence.
reduces the capability of sense organs.
According to Charak, excessive use of salt causes weakness and low stamina in the body, baldness, early hair whitening and wrinkled skin.
Basically, salt induces and stimulates the chemical or digestive processes that can turn destructive if uncontrolled. According to Ayurveda, salt is considered to the nutritive factor majorly responsible for accelerated aging.