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What is Ayurvedic Healing?

Ayurveda is an ancient form of holistic healing originating from India. At the root of Ayurvedic thought are cosmological principles that view the universe as one living, animated being whose interconnected parts are manifest through the five elements: Ether (space), Air (motion), Fire (light), Water (life), and Earth (form). 

The beauty of Ayurvedic healing is that it honours the needs of every individual based on their constitution, of which there exists nine different forms, all of which are a combination of three types:

Vata individuals resonate with the qualities of Air and Ether. They are thin, tall, and physically often suffer from dryness, constipation and nervous disorders. Psychologically, they are prone to fear, anxiety and ungroundedness. 

Pitta individuals embody the qualities of Fire and Water. They are of medium build with oily skin and hair and often suffer from high acidity levels and inflammation. Psychologically, they are prone to anger, aggressiveness and resentment.

Kapha individuals are of the nature of Water and Earth. They are heavier set with naturally large frames and often suffer from congestion and retention of fluids. Psychologically, they are prone to sentimentality, attachment, and inflexibility.  

Every Ayurvedic healing regimen considers the specificities of these constitutional types, which allows for increased effectiveness in treating diseases. For example, the herb Valerian is commonly used in Western herbalism as a sedative and is considered calming for the nervous system, making it beneficial for those who suffer from insomnia. However, the Ayurvedic approach to plant medicine takes this one step further: Valerian is considered heating in Ayurvedic thought, which means that although it may be used as a sleep-promoting herb for individuals who are Vata- (Air and Ether) or Kapha- (Water and Earth) dominant types, it is not ideal for Pitta (Fire and Water) types due to its heating nature which may end up aggravating the already fiery make up of the Pitta constitution. 

How do I work with Ayurveda?

Ayurveda is a wonderful form of medicine and is successfully used in the treatment of many illnesses. It focuses on self-knowledge as well as the appropriate dietary regimen and herbal supports for correcting physical, emotional and mental imbalances.