Ayurveda is India’s traditional, natural system of medicine that has been practiced for more than 5,000 years. Ayurveda is a Sanskrit word that literally translated means "science of life" or "practices of longevity." Ayurveda was the system of health care conceived and developed by the seers (rishis) and natural scientists through centuries of observations, experiments, discussions, and meditations. For several thousand years their teachings were passed on orally from teacher to student; about the fifth to sixth century BC, elaborately detailed texts were written in Sanskrit, the ancient language of India. For many years Ayurveda flourished and was used by rich and poor alike in India and Southeast Asia. Manuscript page from Atharva-Veda, earliest Indian text (approx. 1500 BC) with much medical information, one of several Vedas (meaning "knowledge"), upon which Ayurvedic medical practice is based on. Ayurvedic manuals were written by Charaka, Sushruta, and Vagbhata that give detailed descriptions of the various practices. Charaka listed 500 hundred remedies and Sushruta over 700 vegetable medicines. Ayurveda emphasizes prevention of disease, rejuvenation of our body systems, and extension of life span. The profound premise and promise of Ayurveda is that through certain practices, not only can we prevent heart disease and make our headaches go away, but we can also better understand ourselves and the world around us, live a long healthy life in balance and harmony, achieve our fullest potential, and express our true inner nature on a daily basis. Ayurveda provides an integrated approach to preventing and treating illness through lifestyle interventions and natural therapies. It is based on the view that the elements, forces, and principles that comprise all of nature - and that holds it together and make it function - are also seen in human beings. In Ayurveda, the mind (or consciousness) and the body (or physical mass) not only influence each other - they are each other. Together they form the mind-body. The universal consciousness is an intelligent, aware ocean of energy that gives rise to the physical world we perceive through our five senses. Ayurvedic philosophy and practices link us to every aspect of ourselves and remind us that we are in union with every aspect of nature, each other, and the entire universe. There can be no mental health without physical health, and vice versa. In Ayurveda, symptoms and diseases that could be categorized as mental thoughts or feelings are just as important as symptoms and diseases of the physical body. Both are due to imbalances within a person, and both are treated by restoring the natural balance mentally and physically. In Ayurveda your whole life and lifestyle must be in harmony before you can enjoy true well being. Lifestyle interventions are a major Ayurvedic preventive and therapeutic approach. In India, Ayurvedic practitioners receive state-recognized, institutionalized training in parallel to their physician counterparts. The research base is growing concerning the physiological effects of meditative techniques and yoga postures in Indian medical literature and Western psychological literature. Published studies have documented reductions in cardiovascular disease risk factors, including blood pressure, cholesterol, and reaction to stress, in individuals who practice Ayurvedic methods. Laboratory and clinical studies on Ayurvedic herbal preparations and other therapies have shown them to have a range of potentially beneficial effects for preventing and treating certain cancers, treating infectious disease, treating diabetes, promoting health, and treating aging. Mechanisms underlying these effects may include free-radical scavenging effects, immune system modulation, brain neurotransmitter modulation, and hormonal effects.

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Ayurvedam is a gift of God from heaven as the answer to the frequent prayers of our ancestors. It has not been given just to cure diseases but it has shown a way of living which is healthy and fruitful. These days, life is a burden for all. It does not matter if you are rich or poor. For the poor, it means suffering, as they have to work hard to make both ends meet and also to attain a desired standard of living. The affluent persons have to work hard in order to keep up the style of living (social status) they are accustomed to. In the midst of all these worries, tension and hard work, your mind will not have peace nor body get proper rest. This can lead to disease. Here ayurveda gives you an advice on proper style of life. Get up early in the morning and pray to God. " Bramhe muhurthe uthishte swastho rakshartheam ayusha"---Our God almighty is the only answer to all our miseries. We should pray for our daily bread. Forgive others, so that we get forgiveness from God. This divine love of God help us to love all our friends, neighbors, elders and vanishes all hatred from our minds. Thus our mind becomes clear to see the beauty of the world, which god has given to us. This will enable us to be satisfied with our earnings and to see the gifts of our life. The clear contented mind helps to think properly and free us from anxiety, tiredness and idleness. With full energy and peace of mind we have the full day to live. Think about body appetite, digestion and sleep. This will give an idea of " doshe vriddikshaya". If something goes wrong, we should seek necessary medical care. Recognizing and identifying the messages our body conveys us at various stages is very important for a healthy living. "Suthrasthana" instructs to have fresh and tasty food with a good appetite. Work with utmost sincerity that you fear nothing, God gives you the reward. Good sleep is essential for good health. There is clear and proper instructions about sexual life as it is very important. Food, sleep and sex are the three pillars of life. "Rithucharya" talks about changes in climate. The strains due to overwork is caused by external elements. "Nidana parivarjanam chikithsa"---says to avoid the cause to cure the illness. "Suthrasthan, Nidanesthana, Chikithsasthana " talks about medicines that cure the disease. Thus both prevention as well as cure is discussed. Ayurveda - the ancient art of cure can be a modern art of living for better life and good health.

Basis for Ayurvedic Philosophy
Ayurveda is applicable to every living thing, as implied by its name, the science of life. Vedic sciences attribute life to more things than we normally do - the things such as air, wind, fire, the earth, planets, stars, etc. are all thought to possess conscience like living beings. The basic premise of Ayurveda is that the entire cosmos or universe is part of one singular absolute. Everything that exists in the vast external universe (macrocosm), also appears in the internal cosmos of the human body (microcosm). The human body consisting of 50-100 million cells, when healthy, is in harmony, self-perpetuating and self-correcting just as the universe is. Yodlee Confidential 2

The ancient Ayurveda text, Charaka, says, "Man is the epitome of the universe. Within man, there is as much diversity as in the world outside. Similarly, the outside world is as diverse as human beings themselves." In other words, all human beings are a living microcosm of the universe and the universe is a living macrocosm of the human beings. 1) Uniqueness of Individuals Ayurveda views each and every person as unique, with a unique mind-body constitution and a unique set of life circumstances, all of which must be considered in determining either natural healing approaches or recommendations for daily living. This view is in alignment with the modern science which views individuals as unique in the universe with a unique DNA. According to Ayurveda, because we each have a unique constitution, our health prescription must be unique to us. This means that in order to be healthy, you need to eat certain foods that are beneficial for your body type and stay away from others. Your exercise program must be personally suitable as well. Your constitution determines very much about you - your body, your personality, even how you relate to other people. Understanding it lets you know what you need in order to be healthy.

2) Harmony With The Nature and Developing Perfect Health
The theoretical side of Ayurveda provides insights into how to live one's life in harmony with nature and natural laws and rhythms. Its practical side - specifically its guidelines for an intelligently regulated diet and daily routine, its techniques for stress management, and its exercises for increased fitness and alertness-help us take control of our lives and develop radiant health. The central goal of Ayurveda is nothing less than a state of perfect health, for the individual and for society and the environment as well, in which every man and woman is inwardly in balance and outwardly in harmony with the environment and the laws of nature. According to Ayurveda, nature is permeated by intelligence. Intelligent laws govern the growth of all living things; kittens grow into cats, acorns into oak trees. Indeed, laws of nature regulate everything, from the tiny world of whirling atoms to the huge, enormous world of galaxies. 3) Human Body As A Self Correcting Mechanism and Balance The human body is part of nature, as we discussed before as a microcosm of the universe, and when it runs perfectly, as it was designed to run, it can be perfectly healthy. It is trying to be perfectly healthy all the time, using its innate self-healing, self-regulating ability as it strives for a perfect homeostatic balance. But we repeatedly interfere. Nature has set us up with all the equipment we need to be perfectly healthy. Health is our natural state, and ill health is unnatural. Every day our systems are exposed to literally millions of bacteria, viruses, allergens, even carcinogens, and yet our immune system has the intelligence and skill to deal with all those invaders and keep us healthy. However, when stress, inadequate nutrition, or just fatigue weaken the immune system, those same invaders may produce disease. Every second the body is adjusting to countless thousands of changing parameters, keeping us in homeostatic balance. No matter what comes along to upset the balance, the body knows its own nature, knows what ideal temperature it should be and the correct chemistry it needs to maintain, and keeps referring back to that blueprint to maintain proper balance. Yodlee Confidential 3

4) The Concept of Self The Self, as this inner dimension of our nature is called in Ayurveda, is the central point of our being, the hub of the wheel. It is the true inner center of our diversified lives. Thought, feelings, speech, action, and relationships all originate here, deep within the personality. The whole person-and the whole field of interpersonal behavior-can be spontaneously enhanced by the process of self-referral, or looking within to experience the Self. This is analogous to the natural process by which all the branches, leaves, flowers, and fruit of a tree can be simultaneously nourished and enlivened by watering the root. The Self can be directly experienced. Those who do experience it find it to be deeply peaceful, yet a reservoir of creativity, intelligence, and happiness that spills over into all phases of living. 5) How Do We Get Sick? Ayurveda holds that specific disease conditions are symptoms of an underlying imbalance. It does not neglect relief of these symptoms, but its main focus is on the big picture: to restore balance and to help you create such a healthy lifestyle that the imbalance won't occur again. Living in health and balance is the key to a long life free from disease. Perhaps the most important lesson Ayurveda has to teach is that our health is up to us. Every day of our lives, every hour of every day, we can, and do, choose either health or illness. When we choose wisely, nature rewards us with health and happiness. When we persistently choose unwisely, nature, in her wisdom, eventually sets us straight: She makes us sick and gives us a chance to rest and rethink our choices. 6) The Five Great Elements Ayurveda believes that everything in this universe is made up of five great elements or building blocks. These are earth, water, fire, air, and ether. Earth represents the solid state of matter. It manifests stability, permanence, and rigidity. In our body, the parts such as bones, teeth, cells, and tissues are manifestations of the earth. Earth is considered a stable substance. Water characterizes change and represents the liquid state. Water is necessary for the survival of all living things. A large part of the human body is made up of water. Our blood, lymph, and other fluids move between our cells and through our vessels, bringing energy, carrying away wastes, regulating temperature, bringing disease fighters, and carrying hormonal information from one area to another. Water is a substance without stability. Fire is the power to transform solids into liquids, to gas, and back again. In other words, it possess power to transform the state of any substance. Within our bodies, the fire or energy binds the atoms together. It also converts food to fat (stored energy) and muscle. Fire transforms food into energy. It creates the impulses of nervous reactions, our feelings, and even our thought processes. Fire is considered a form without substance. Air is the gaseous form of matter which is mobile and dynamic. Within the body, air (oxygen) is the basis for all energy transfer reactions. It is a key element required for fire to burn. Air is existence without form.

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Ether is the space in which everything happens. It is the field that is simultaneously the source of all matter and the space in which it exists. Ether is only the distances which separate matter. The chief characteristic of ether is sound. Here sound represents the entire spectrum of vibration. Every substance in our world is made up of these five substances. All substances can be classified according to their predominant element. For example, a mountain is predominantly made up of earth element. A mountain also contain water, fire, air and ether. But these elements are very small compared to the earth. So, its classification is the earth. Ayurveda defines a human as the assemblage of the five great elements plus the "immaterial self."

7) Concept of Tri-Dosha
In Ayurvedic philosophy, the five elements combine in pairs to form three dynamic forces or interactions called doshas. Dosha means "that which changes." It is a word derived from the root dus, which is equivalent to the English prefix 'dys', such as in dysfunction, dystrophy, etc. In this sense, dosha can be regarded as a fault, mistake, error, or a transgression against the cosmic rhythm. The doshas are constantly moving in dynamic balance, one with the others. Doshas are required for the life to happen. In Ayurveda, dosha is also known as the governing principles as every living thing in nature is characterized by the dosha. The three active doshas are called Vata, Pitta and Kapha.

Vata is a force conceptually made up of elements ether and air. The proportions of ether and air
determine how active Vata is. The amount of ether (space) affects the ability of the air to gain momentum. If unrestricted, as in ocean, air can gain momentum and become forceful such as a hurricane. Vata means "wind, to move, flow, direct the processes of, or command." Vata enables the other two doshas to be expressive. The actions of Vata are drying, cooling, light, agitating, and moving. Vata governs breathing, blinking of the eyelids, movements in the muscles and tissues, pulsations in the heart, all expansion and contraction, the movements of cytoplasm and the cell membranes, and the movement of the single impulses in nerve cells. Vata also governs such feelings and emotions as freshness, nervousness, fear, anxiety, pain, tremors, and spasms. The primary seat or location of the Vata in the body is the colon. It also resides in the hips, thighs, ears, bones, large intestine, pelvic cavity, and skin. It is related to the touch sensation. If the body develops an excess of vata, it will accumulate in these areas. Here are some of the common characteristics of people who have a predominantly Vata constitution. Creativity, mental quickness Highly imaginative Quick to learn and grasp new knowledge, but also quick to forget Sexually easily excitable but quickly satiated Slenderness; lightest of the three body types Talk and walk quickly Tendency toward cold hands and feet, discomfort in cold climates Excitable, lively, fun personality Changeable moods Irregular daily routine Yodlee Confidential 5

Variable appetite and digestive efficiency High energy in short bursts; tendency to tire easily and to overexert Full of joy and enthusiasm when in balance Respond to stress with fear, worry, and anxiety, especially when out of balance Tendency to act on impulse Often have racing, disjointed thoughts Generally have dry skin and dry hair and don't perspire much Typical health problems include headaches, hypertension, dry coughs, sore throats, earaches, anxiety, irregular heart rhythms, muscle spasms, lower back pain, constipation, abdominal gas, diarrhea, nervous stomach, menstrual cramps, premature ejaculation and other sexual dysfunctions, arthritis. Most neurological disorders are related to Vata imbalance. Physical Features People of vata constitution are generally physically underdeveloped. Their chests are flat and their veins and muscle tendons are visible. The complexion is brown, the skin is cold, rough, dry and cracked. Vata people generally are either too tall or too short, with thin frames which reveal prominent joints and bone-ends because of poor muscle development. The hair is curly and scanty, the eyelashes are thin and the eyes lusterless. The eyes may be sunken, small, dry, and active. The nails are rough and brittle. The shape of the nose is bent and turned-up. Physiologically, the appetite and digestion are variable. Vata people loves sweet, sour and salty tastes and like hot drinks. The production of urine is scanty and the feces are dry, hard and small in quantity. They have a tendency to perspire less than other constitutional types. Their sleep may be disturbed and they will sleep less than the other types. Their hands and feet are often cold. Psychologically, they are characterized by short memory but quick mental understanding. They will understand something immediately, but will soon forget it. They have little willpower, tend toward mental instability and possess little tolerance, confidence or boldness. Their reasoning power is weak and these people are nervous, fearful and afflicted by much anxiety. Vata people tend to earn money quickly and also to spend it quickly. Thus, they tend to remain poor.

Signs of Vata Dosha Imbalance:
There are a number of tell tale signs of dosha imbalance. Some persons will get very angry. Some get depressed, etc. Here is a summary of the signs of vata imbalance: Worried Tired, yet can't relax, Fatigue, poor stamina Nervous, Can't concentrate Anxious, fearful Agitated mind Impatient, Antsy or hyperactive Spaced out Self-defeating Shy, insecure, Restless Cannot make decisions Weight loss, under weight Insomnia; wake up at night and can't go back to sleep Generalized aches, sharp pains, Arthritis, stiff and painful joints Yodlee Confidential 6

Agitated movement Very sensitive to cold Nail biting Rough, flaky skin, Chapped lips Fainting spells Heart palpitations Constipation, Intestinal bloating, gas, Belching, hiccups Dry, sore throat, Dry eyes In summary, if you are suffering from anxiety, worry, a tendency to overexertion, insomnia, chronic tiredness, mental and emotional depression, physical tension and other symptoms of stress, a weakened immune system, headaches, underweight, constipation, skin dryness, mental confusion, emotional conflict, inability to make decisions, impulsiveness, fast and disconnected speech, fantasy, illusions, and sensations of being lighthearted and removed from thoughts, feelings, or circumstances, then there is a very good sign that your vata is aggravated.

A Food Plan to Balance Vata Dosha
These guidelines can be used for vata mind-body constitutions, to maintain dosha balance, and to restore balance if necessary, regardless of the basic constitution. Vata influences the movement of thoughts, feelings, prana flows, nerve impulses, and fluids in the body.

Warm food, moderately heavy textures, added butter and fat. Salt, sour, and sweet tastes; Soothing and satisfying foods. All soothing foods are good for settling disturbed Vata. Use foods such as: warm milk, cream, butter, warm soups, stews, hot cereals, fresh baked bread. Since vata is a cold dry dosha, warm, nourishing foods such as these are good for stabilizing vata. On the other hand cold foods such as cold salads, iced drinks, raw vegetables and greens are not very good for persons with vata imbalance. Breakfast is highly recommended. Use hot cereals such as cream of rice or wheat or any other breakfast that is warm, milky, and sweet. Take a hot or herbal tea with snacks in the late afternoon. Avoid drinks with high caffeine as vata gets disturbed by it. Use spicy foods such as spicy Mexican or Indian foods that are cooked in oil. Use warm moist foods such as cooked grains and cereals, bowl of hot oatmeal or cup of steaming vegetable soup. Warm milk is good. You can add a little sugar or honey to it if you prefer. Avoid eating candies as it disturbs vata. Prefer salted nuts that are heavy and oily as opposed to dry salty snacks. All sweet fruits are Ok for vata. Avoid unripe fruits as they are astringent Take warm or hot water instead of ice water and drinks. Summary: Breakfast is usually desirable. Hot foods and sweet and sour tastes. Reduce dry foods and bitter tastes. Warm or hot water and drinks. Raw nuts and nut butters. Spices: cinnamon, cardamom, cumin, ginger, cloves in moderation. Indications of balanced vata influences are mental alertness and abundance of creative energy, good elimination of waste matters from the body, sound sleep, a strong immune system, enthusiasm, emotional balance, and orderly functioning of the body's systems.

Pitta is a force created by the dynamic interplay of water and fire. These forces represent
transformation. They cannot change into each other, but they modulate or control each other and Yodlee Confidential 7

are vitally required for the life processes to occur. (For example, too much fire and too little water will result in the boiling away of the water. Too much water will result in the fire being put out.) Pitta governs digestion, absorption, assimilation, nutrition, metabolism, body temperature, skin coloration, the luster of the eyes, intelligence, and understanding. Psychologically, pitta arouses anger, hate, and jealousy. The small intestine, stomach, sweat glands, blood, fat, eyes, and skin are the seats of Pitta.

Here are some of the common characteristics of people who have a predominantly Pitta body type. Medium physique, strong, well-built Sharp mind, good concentration powers Orderly, focused Assertive, self-confident, and entrepreneurial at their best; aggressive, demanding, pushy when out of balance Competitive, enjoy challenges Passionate and romantic; sexually have more vigor and endurance than Vatas, but less than Kaphas Strong digestion, strong appetite; get irritated if they have to miss or wait for a meal Like to be in command When under stress, Pittas become irritated and angry Skin fair or reddish, often with freckles; sunburns easily Hair usually fine and straight, tending toward blond or red, typically turns gray early; tendency toward baldness or thinning hair Uncomfortable in sun or hot weather; heat makes them very tired Perspire a lot Others may find them stubborn, pushy, opinionated Good public speakers; also capable of sharp, sarcastic, cutting speech Generally good management and leadership ability, but can become authoritarian Like to spend money, surround themselves with beautiful objects Subject to temper tantrums, impatience, and anger Typical physical problems include rashes or inflammations of the skin, acne, boils, skin cancer, ulcers, heartburn, acid stomach, hot sensations in the stomach or intestines, insomnia, bloodshot or burning eyes and other vision problems, anemia, jaundice.

Physical Features
These people are of medium height, are slender and body frame may be delicate. Their chests are not as flat as those of vata people and they show a medium prominence of veins and muscle tendons. The bones are not as prominent as in the vata individual. Muscle development is moderate. The pitta complexion may be coppery, yellowish, reddish or fair. The skin is soft, warm and less wrinkled than vata skin. The hair is thin, silky, red or brownish and there is a tendency toward premature graying of hair and hair loss. The eyes may be gray, green or cooper-brown and sharp: the eyeballs will be of medium prominence. The nails are soft. The shape of the nose is sharp and the tip tends to be reddish. Physiologically, these people have a strong metabolism, good digestion and resulting strong appetites. The person of pitta constitution usually takes large quantities of food and liquid. Pitta types have a natural craving for sweet, bitter and astringent tastes and enjoy cold drinks. Their Yodlee Confidential 8

sleep is of medium duration but uninterrupted. They produce a large volume of urine and the feces are yellowish, liquid, soft and plentiful. There is a tendency toward excessive perspiring. The body temperature may run slightly high and hands and feet will tend to be warm. Pitta people do not tolerate sunlight, heat or hard work well. Psychologically, pitta people have a good power of comprehension; they are very intelligent and sharp and tend to be good orators. They have emotional tendencies toward hate, anger and jealousy. They are ambitious people who generally like to be leaders. Pitta people appreciate material prosperity and they tend to be moderately well-off financially. They enjoy exhibiting their wealth and luxurious possessions.

Signs of Vata Dosha Imbalance:
There are a number of tell tale signs of dosha imbalance. Some persons will get very angry. Some get depressed, etc. Here is a summary of the signs of vata imbalance: Worried Tired, yet can't relax, Fatigue, poor stamina Nervous, Can't concentrate Anxious, fearful Agitated mind Impatient, Antsy or hyperactive Spaced out Self-defeating Shy, insecure, Restless Cannot make decisions Weight loss, under weight Insomnia; wake up at night and can't go back to sleep Generalized aches, sharp pains, Arthritis, stiff and painful joints Agitated movement Very sensitive to cold Nail biting Rough, flaky skin, Chapped lips Fainting spells Heart palpitations Constipation, Intestinal bloating, gas, Belching, hiccups Dry, sore throat, Dry eyes In summary, if you are suffering from anxiety, worry, a tendency to overexertion, insomnia, chronic tiredness, mental and emotional depression, physical tension and other symptoms of stress, a weakened immune system, headaches, underweight, constipation, skin dryness, mental confusion, emotional conflict, inability to make decisions, impulsiveness, fast and disconnected speech, fantasy, illusions, and sensations of being lighthearted and removed from thoughts, feelings, or circumstances, then there is a very good sign that your vata is aggravated.

A Food Plan to Balance Vata Dosha
These guidelines can be used for vata mind-body constitutions, to maintain dosha balance, and to restore balance if necessary, regardless of the basic constitution. Vata influences the movement of thoughts, feelings, prana flows, nerve impulses, and fluids in the body.

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Warm food, moderately heavy textures, added butter and fat. Salt, sour, and sweet tastes; Soothing and satisfying foods. All soothing foods are good for settling disturbed Vata. Use foods such as: warm milk, cream, butter, warm soups, stews, hot cereals, fresh baked bread. Since vata is a cold dry dosha, warm, nourishing foods such as these are good for stabilizing vata. On the other hand cold foods such as cold salads, iced drinks, raw vegetables and greens are not very good for persons with vata imbalance. Breakfast is highly recommended. Use hot cereals such as cream of rice or wheat or any other breakfast that is warm, milky, and sweet. Take a hot or herbal tea with snacks in the late afternoon. Avoid drinks with high caffeine as vata gets disturbed by it. Use spicy foods such as spicy Mexican or Indian foods that are cooked in oil. Use warm moist foods such as cooked grains and cereals, bowl of hot oatmeal or cup of steaming vegetable soup. Warm milk is good. You can add a little sugar or honey to it if you prefer. Avoid eating candies as it disturbs vata. Prefer salted nuts that are heavy and oily as opposed to dry salty snacks. All sweet fruits are Ok for vata. Avoid unripe fruits as they are astringent Take warm or hot water instead of ice water and drinks. Summary: Breakfast is usually desirable. Hot foods and sweet and sour tastes. Reduce dry foods and bitter tastes. Warm or hot water and drinks. Raw nuts and nut butters. Spices: cinnamon, cardamom, cumin, ginger, cloves in moderation.

General Tips on Health and Wellness For Vata Types
The Vatas find it very difficult to maintain regular habits, that is, to eat and sleep at regular times. But this is the most important thing for them to do. When Vata is out of balance this may feel almost impossible, but an effort to establish a regular routine is very important for all people with a Vata body type. Rest sufficiently, and choose foods, behaviors, personal relationships, and environmental circumstances which can be instrumental in balancing vata characteristics. It is also important to regulate mental and physical impulses and to modify mental attitudes, emotional states, and behaviors in supportive ways. Sweet, sour, and salty tastes decrease vata influences, so include these tastes if vata influences need to be diminished. Milk, wheat, rice, and some fruits and berries can provide sweet and sour tastes. Regular exercise should be relaxed and moderate. Hatha yoga practice in a meditative mood is good, as are t'ai chi, walking, and swimming. Avoid strenuous, competitive, frantic activities. When possible, associate with people who are calmly purposeful. Meditate every day for deep relaxation.

Kapha is the conceptual equilibrium of water and earth. Kapha is structure and lubrication. One
can visualize the Kapha force as the stirring force to keep the water and earth from separating. For example, if we take a pot, fill it to the half with water and then add sand to it, the sand will gradually sink to the bottom of the pot. (It separates from the water). The only way to keep the sand in equilibrium with the water is by stirring the mixture continuously. The Kapha force can be visualized as this stirring force in our body. Kapha cements the elements in the body, providing the material for physical structure. This dosha maintains body resistance. Water is the main constituent of kapha, and this bodily water is Yodlee Confidential 10

responsible physiologically for biological strength and natural tissue resistance in the body. Kapha lubricates the joints; provides moisture to the skin; helps to heal wounds; fills the spaces in the body; gives biological strength, vigor and stability; supports memory retention; gives energy to the heart and lungs, and maintains immunity. Kapha is present in the chest, throat, head, sinuses, nose, mouth, stomach, joints, cytoplasm, plasma, and in the liquid secretions of the body such as mucus. Psychologically, kapha is responsible for the emotions of attachment, greed, and longstanding envy. It is also expressed in tendencies toward calmness, forgiveness, and love. The chest is the seat of kapha. Here are some of the common characteristics of people who have a predominantly Kapha constitution. Easygoing, relaxed, slow-paced Affectionate and loving Forgiving, compassionate, nonjudgmental nature Stable and reliable; faithful Physically strong and with a sturdy, heavier build Have the most energy of all constitutions, but it is steady and enduring, not explosive Slow moving and graceful Slow speech, reflecting a deliberate thought process Slower to learn, but never forgets; outstanding long-term memory Soft hair and skin; tendency to have large "soft" eyes and a low, soft voice Tend toward being overweight; may also suffer from sluggish digestion Prone to heavy, oppressive depressions More self-sufficient, need less outward stimulation than do the other types A mild, gentle, and essentially undemanding approach to life Sexually Kaphas are the slowest to be aroused, but they also have the most endurance Excellent health, strong resistance to disease Slow to anger; strive to maintain harmony and peace in their surroundings Not easily upset and can be a point of stability for others Tend to be possessive and hold on to things, people, money; good savers. Don't like cold, damp weather Physical problems include colds and congestion, sinus headaches, respiratory problems including asthma and wheezing, hay fever, allergies, and atherosclerosis (hardening of the arteries). Physical Features People of kapha constitution have well-developed bodies. There is, however, a strong tendency for these individuals to carry excess weight. Their chests are expanded and broad. The veins and tendons of kapha people are not obvious because of their thick skin and their muscle development is good. The bones are not prominent. Their complexions are fair and bright. The skin is soft, lustrous and oily, it is also cold and pale. The hair is thick, dark, soft and wavy. The eyes are dense and black or blue: the white of the eye is generally very white, large and attractive. Physiologically, kapha people have regular appetites. Due to slow digestion, they tend to consume less food. They crave pungent, bitter and astringent foods. Stools are soft and may be pale in color: evacuation is slow. Their perspiration is moderate. Sleep is sound and prolonged. There is a strong vital capacity evidenced by good stamina, and kapha people are generally healthy, happy and peaceful.

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Psychologically, they tend to be tolerant, calm, forgiving and loving: however, they also exhibit traits of greed, attachment, envy and possessiveness. Their comprehension is slow but definite: once they understand something, that knowledge is retained. Kapha people tend to be wealthy. They earn money and are good at holding on to it.

Signs of Kapha Aggravation
Sluggish thinking, Dull thinking Groggy all day Apathetic, no desire Depressed, Sad, Sentimental Slow to comprehend, Slow to react Procrastinating, Lethargy Clingy, hanging on to people and ideas Greedy, Possessive, Materialistic Sleeping too much Very tired in the morning, hard to get out of bed Drowsy or groggy during the day Weight gain, obesity Mucus and congestion in the chest or throat Mucus and congestion in the nose or sinuses Nausea Diabetes Hay fever Pale, cool, clammy skin Edema, water retention, Bloated feeling Sluggish digestion, food "just sits" in the stomach High cholesterol Aching joints or heavy limbs When you experience symptoms such as nausea, lethargy, a feeling of heaviness, chills, looseness of the limbs, coughing, mucus discharges, breathing difficulties, and a tendency to sleep too much, you may be suffering from Kapha imbalance. Other symptoms can be inertia, congestion, stagnation, and circulation problems. There may be a tendency toward obesity. Boredom, laziness, and mental dullness may be present. Indications of balanced kapha influences are physical strength, a strong immune system, serenity, mental resolve, rational thinking, ability to conserve and use personal resources, endurance, and adaptability.

General Tips for Health and Wellness for Kapha Types
Kapha's are prone to lethargy, sluggishness, depression, and overweight, Kaphas need activity and stimulation. Daily exercise is more important for them than for any other type. Getting out of the house and actively seeking new experiences is also valuable. Be receptive to useful change, renounce impediments to progress, be intentional in implementing life-enhancing actions, and choose foods, mental attitudes, behaviors, exercise routines, and relationships and environmental circumstances which can be instrumental in balancing kapha characteristics. Pungent, bitter, and astringent tastes decrease kapha influences. Black pepper, ginger, cumin, chili, and some other spices provide the pungent taste; bitter is provided by some green leafy vegetables; and some green vegetables and beans provide the astringent taste. Note that the taste that decreases a dosha usually increases one or both of the other two. For general Yodlee Confidential 12

purposes, mildly increase the proportion of foods which are helpful while somewhat decreasing the proportions of others-having a sampling of all six tastes at your major meal. Meditation can be more intensive for kapha constitutions than for vata or pitta constitutions. Schedule time every day for prayer and meditation.

A Food Plan to Balance Kapha Dosha
These guidelines can be used for kapha mind-body constitutions, to maintain dosha balance, and to restore balance if necessary, regardless of the basic constitution. Kapha influences the heavy, moist aspects of the body.

What kind of Food to Eat to Balance Kapha
Warm, light food Dry food, cooked without much water, minimum of butter, oil and sugar Stimulating foods with pungent, bitter, and astringent tastes Kaphas need to watch the consumption of too much sweet foods or fatty foods. Keep an eye on the salt consumption also, which tend to result in fluid retention in Kaphas. Light meals are to be favored such as light breakfast and dinner. Avoid deep fried foods. Eat lightly cooked foods or raw fruits and vegetables. Eat spicy, bitter and astringent foods. Watch out for eating too much food, a typical kapha tendency. Select hot food over cold food whenever feasible. Dry cooking methods (baking, broiling, grilling, sautéing) are preferable for kaphas over moist cooking such as steaming, boiling or poaching. As an appetizer eat bitter or pungent foods instead of salty or sour. Foods such as romaine lettuce, endive, or tonic water are good to stimulate your appetite. Take ginger tea or a pinch or ginger to stimulate appetite. Other preferred spices are cumin, fenugreek, sesame seed and turmeric. Any food that is spicy is good for kaphas such as very hot Mexican or Indian food, especially in winter. Foods that are good for kapha breakfast are hot spiced cider, buckwheat pancakes with apple butter, corn muffins, and bitter cocoa made with skim milk and a touch of honey. Avoid cold cereals, cold juice or milk, and sugary pastries. Bacon and sausage aggravates kapha due to their salt and oil. For kapha types, breakfast is optional. (You may skip it if you like). To pep you up in the morning, take honey, hot water, lemon juice and ginger. Try hot ginger tea. Try skipping a meal or two and take a spoonful of honey in hot water to keep you going. Kaphas have a sweet tooth. So, cutting down on sugar is difficult for many of them. Cutting sugar is recommended. Take honey instead. Avoid taking more than a spoonful of honey a day. Don't overindulge on dairy foods. Butter, ice cream, and cheese are among the worst foods you can take as it aggravates the kapha. Take warm low fat milk. Avoid hamburgers and milk shakes. Eat raw fruits, vegetables and salads. Watch out the restaurant foods, especially oily, salty, sweet or deep fried foods - these are all kapha aggravating. Eat salad with minimum salad dressing. Take a glass of hot water instead of ice water. Eat salad instead of soup especially in hot weather.

Breakfast is usually not necessary. Avoid sugar, fats, dairy products, and salt. Ghee and oils only in small amounts. Choose light, dry foods. The main meal should be at the middle of the day, and only a light, dry meal in the evening. Avoid cold foods and drinks. Reduce use of sweet, sour, and salty tastes. Pungent, astringent, and bitter tastes are all right. All spices. Yodlee Confidential 13

Basis For Ayurvedic Philosophy
Concept of Prakruti and Vikruti According to Ayurveda, your basic constitution is determined at the time of conception. This constitution is called Prakruti. The term Prakruti is a Sanskrit word that means, "nature," "creativity," or "the first creation." One of the very important concept of Ayurveda is that one's basic constitution is fixed throughout his lifetime. The combination of Vata, Pitta, and Kapha that was present in the individual at the time of conception is maintained throughout his lifetime. This is your base point. Notice that different persons can have different combination of Vata, Pitta and kapha as their basic constitution or Prakruti. This is how Ayurveda can explain the subtle differences between individuals and explains why everyone is unique and that two persons can react very differently when exposed to the same environment or stimuli. Your Prakruti is unique to you just as your fingerprint and DNA. Thus, in order to understand a person, it is necessary to determine his or her Prakruti. HolisticOnLine has developed a computerized diagnostic system that enables you to determine your Prakruti. Ideally, your constitution remain fixed throughout your life. Unfortunately, this is not the case. Every person is subjected to the constant interaction with his or her environment which will affect the person's constitution at any time. The body will try to maintain a dynamic equilibrium or balance with the environment. Your current condition is called your vikruti. Although it reflects your ability to adjust to life's influences and is always changing, it should match your prakruti, or inborn constitution, as closely as possible. If the current proportion of your doshas differs significantly from your constitutional proportion, it indicates imbalances, which in turn can lead to illness. Farther your Vikruti is from your Prakruti, more ill you are. Ayurveda teaches that your Vikruti can be changed by means of diet and meditation so as to approach your Prakruti or the state where you have perfect health. The concept of Prakruti and Vikruti can be illustrated by reference to our body temperature. When healthy, we maintain an average body temperature of about 98 degrees. 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 pick right back up to the normal if we are healthy. Similarly, jogging on a hot day can temporarily raise our body temperature. 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 and the difference between the Prakruti (our normal temperature) and Vikruti (our present temperature) can determine whether any medical intervention is required. Just like an allopathic doctor will take your temperature and blood pressure routinely as the first step in diagnosing your condition, Ayurvedic practitioners will determine your Prakruti and Vikruti as the first step in diagnosing your condition. Hence prior to embarking on a journey to perfect health and longevity, it is important that you understand your Prakruti and Vikruti and determine how far separated these are. Armed with this knowledge, we can map a treatment strategy. This is the basic premise of Ayurveda.

Basis For Ayurvedic Philosophy
Balanced Tridosha means a Healthy Person

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Every person (and thing) contains all three doshas. However, the proportion varies according to the individual and usually one or two doshas predominate. Within each person the doshas are continually interacting with one another and with the doshas in all of nature. This explains why people can have much in common but also have an endless variety of individual differences in the way they behave and respond to their environment. Ayurveda recognizes that different foods, tastes, colors, and sounds affect the doshas in different ways. For example very hot and pungent spices aggravate pitta; but cold, light foods such as salads calm it down. This ability to affect the doshas is the underlying basis for Ayurvedic practices and therapies. A balance among the tridosha is necessary for health. Together, the tridosha governs all metabolic activities. When their actions in our mind-body constitution are balanced, we experience psychological and physical wellness. When they are somewhat unbalanced, we may feel uneasy. When they are more obviously unbalanced - when one or more of the three dosha influences are excessive or deficient-discernible symptoms of sickness can be observed and experienced.

Regardless of the percentages of vata, pitta, or kapha influences, your basic constitution represents your psychological and physical nature. When balance is maintained, health is at optimum. Key Concepts of Ayurveda
Digestion - The Cornerstone of Health According to Ayurveda, digestion is the cornerstone of health. Good digestion nourishes the body. Eating the proper foods will make a big difference in your well being. There are two aspects to the food and nutrition in Ayurveda. One is the physical food you eat, digest, and assimilate. In this process, the organs of your digestive system has a big role. The second aspect of it is what you consume through your mind-body. What you see, hear, taste, smell, feel, and think are all important for your well being and impact your health considerably. For example, stress plays a key role in the health. Ayurveda had recognized the importance of the environment in the total health. Remember, everything in your environment is composed of doshas that interact with your own doshas. You are affected by everything else which goes on in this universe as you are part and parcel of this cosmos. a) Agni: Your Digestive Fire Agni in Sanskrit means fire. In Ayurveda, Agni is the digestive and metabolic "fire" produced by the doshas that grabs the essence of nourishment from food, feelings, and thoughts and transforms it into a form your body can use. Agni helps various tissues of the body produce secretions, metabolic reactions, and other processes needed to create energy and maintain and repair the body. Agni is also part of the immune system since its heat destroys harmful organisms and toxins. The activity of agni varies throughout the day and maintaining the strength and natural ebb and flow of your digestive fires is needed for good digestion, good immune function, and resistance to disease. Agni is needed to form ojas. b) Ojas: The Substance That Maintains Life Ojas is the by-product of a healthy, efficient, contented physiology. It is the "juice" that remains after food has been properly digested and assimilated. When you are producing ojas, it means all your organs have integrated vitality and you are receiving the nourishment your mind and body need. Your whole being hums with good vibrations because you are producing and feeling bliss, Yodlee Confidential 15

not pain. However, when your agni isn't working properly, you don't produce ojas. Instead food, thoughts, and feelings turn into ama. Ojas is the subtle glue that cements the body, mind and spirit together, integrating them into a functioning individual. c) Ama - Toxins Ama originates from improperly digested toxic particles that clog the channels in your body. Some of these channels are physical and include the intestines, lymphatic system, arteries and veins, capillaries, and genitourinary tract. Others are nonphysical channels called nadis (river or stream) through which your energy flows. Ama toxicity accumulates wherever there is a weakness in the body, and this will result in disease. Ayurveda offers ways you can cleanse the body of ama such as Panchakarma. However, it's best to prevent it from forming in the first place. The symptoms such as coating on the tongue or feeling tired all the time are signs of ama.

d) Malas: Waste Products
Malas are the waste products of your body and include urine, feces, mucus, and sweat. Eliminating waste is crucial to good health, but dosha imbalances stifle the flow of the malas, creating a toxic internal environment. If you are not eliminating malas, it means you are accumulating ama somewhere in your system and you may have to undergo Ayurvedic cleansing to get rid of these toxins from your body.

e) Prana: The Life Force
Another key concept in Ayurveda is the life force that enters the body at birth, travels through all the parts of the body until it leaves at the moment of death. This life force is called prana. Prana strings body, mind, and spirit together like beads on a strand. Prana is the force necessary to keep the living beings alive. Prana gets its nutrition through: The lungs that absorbs the essence found in the air. The colon that absorbs the prana found in well digested food. Thus the lungs and the large intestine are closely connected in Ayurveda. They both supply Prana. For example, a few minutes of slow, deep breathing can reduce the hunger. Ayurveda is concerned with nourishing both the body as well as the mind.

Concept of The Six Tastes
To westerners, a balanced diet requires the understanding of the different food groups, nutrient values of the food and an understanding of the daily requirements of the food items to get a balanced diet. If a person consistently eats an unbalanced diet, his health will suffer from the deficiency of the nutrients to be obtained from the food or from the excess of the nutrients he is taking. (For example, a diet which is high in saturated fat and red meat is known to cause hardening and blockage of the arteries ultimately resulting in heart disease.) In the absence of such sophisticated knowledge as we know on the nutrition content or requirements and due to the fact that most of the people who lived at the time Ayurveda was written may not be able to understand a complicated nutritional requirement, the creators of Ayurveda have developed a very simple dietary program. This is called the six tastes. According to this system, all the Yodlee Confidential 16

important nutrients that we need for life, such as fats, proteins, carbohydrates, minerals, vitamins, etc. are contained in a meal that consist of all six tastes. The six tastes are sweet, sour, salty, bitter, pungent, and astringent. The food items that belong to each of these tastes is given in the table. Any meal that contains food items from all these six tastes will be a balanced meal. It has all the nutrients for the proper functioning of the body and will balance all the doshas. This is a very simple system and easy to practice and follow.

How To Use the Information on The Six Tastes To Improve Health
Dr. James Brooks, author of "Ayurvedic Secrets to Longevity and Total Health" suggested that Ayurvedic principles of six tastes can be used to analyze what is wrong with the Western diet and why we get into so many problems. Dr. Brooks notes that the average fast food diet includes only three tastes, sweet, salty and sour. (The average fast food of a hamburger, French fries, coke and ketchup have only these three tastes. The meat, bread, and coke are sweet; the fries are salty; the vinegar in the ketchup is sour.) They are all Vata pacifying. Vata imbalance is very common in the western society due to the fast pace of life and the emotional problems such as insecurity, anxiety and emptiness, so common in our lifestyle. These tastes are attractive to most westerners because being vata pacifying, they tend to help with these problems. This is why the fast food is so appealing. The problem is that the fast food is not a healthy diet. It has generally too much fat. It is difficult to digest. It does not contain all the ingredients the body needs because it is short of three tastes. Such a diet tend to imbalance Kapha, characterized by lethargy, overweight, depression, mental dullness, and greediness. Dr. Brooks also suggests that nutritional imbalance can lead to addictive behavior of all kinds. The mind/body system feels dissatisfied and is craving for something. The person does not know what is missing. This, left untreated, can result in addiction (not necessarily just in food). Addiction may be in tobacco, alcohol, drugs, sex, excitement, shopping, etc. The answer to this is to eat a balanced diet incorporating all the six tastes. This tend to balance our tridoshas and we feel mentally and physically satisfied.

How The Six Tastes Affect The Doshas Dosha Vata Tastes That Increases Dosha
Pungent Bitter Astringent Pungent Sour Salty Sweet Sour Salty

Tastes That Decreases Dosha
Sweet Sour Salty Sweet Bitter Astringent Pungent Bitter Astringent



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The table above, summarizing how the six tastes affect the doshas, is very useful in coming up with proper diet in case of imbalances in our doshas or vikruti. For example, a woman who is a few days away from her monthly period, will feel bloated from fluid retention. This is also accompanied by mood change and depression (we call this PMS). Ayurvedically speaking, these all mean that the Kapha is out of whack, an excess of Kapha in the system prior to menstruation period. Looking at the table above we can see that in order to reduce Kapha, we need to eat Pungent (onions, radishes, garlic, ginger, cumin etc.), Bitter (green leafy vegetables such as spinach, bitter greens , turmeric) and astringent foods (such as lentils, broccoli, cabbage etc.). Most of the people tend to eat sweet foods (candy bar) or salty food (such as potato chips, salted nuts etc.). This obviously will make things worse. Similarly, for a person who feels very angry or irritated (signs of Pitta imbalance), foods that are sweet, bitter or astringent will be helpful. Herbs can also be used instead of food. Refer to the table for the appropriate herbs.

Effects of The Six Tastes: Sweet Taste: Property Sweet (Earth + Water)
Cooling Fruits with natural sugar such as peaches, sweet plums, grapes, melons, and oranges; vegetables such as sweet potatoes, carrots, and beets; milk, butter, and whole grains such as rice and wheat bread; herbs and spices such as basil, licorice root, red cloves, peppermint, slippery Elm and fennel. Ayurveda recommends that you avoid highly processed sweets such as candy bars and sugar, which also contain additives, food coloring, and preservatives. Decreases Vata Decreases Pitta Increases Kapha


Effect on Tridosha


Sweet is the taste of pleasure. It makes us feel comforted and contented. It is one of the most important healing tools for debilitating weakness in Ayurveda. Nourishing and strengthening and promotes growth of all tissues, so is good for growing children, the elderly, and the weak or injured. Increases ojas and prolongs life. Good for hair, skin and complexion, and for healing broken bones. Adds Wholesomeness to the Body. Increases Rasa, water and ojas. Relieves thirst: Creates a burning sensation, Nourishes & soothes the body. In excess, sweet taste promotes Kapha imbalances and disorders such as heaviness, laziness, and dullness, colds, obesity, excessive sleeping, loss of appetite, cough, diabetes, & abnormal growth of muscles.


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Effects of The Six Tastes: Sour Taste: Property Source/Example Effect on Tridosha Sour (Earth + Fire)
Heating Yogurt, vinegar, Cheese, sour cream, Green Grapes, Lemon (and other Citrus fruits), Hibiscus, Rose Hips, Tamarind, Pickles, Miso (fermented soybean paste) and in herbs such as Caraway, Coriander, and Cloves. Decreases Vata Increases Pitta Increases Kapha


Creates a feeling of adventurousness. Adds deliciousness to food. Stimulates Appetite & Sharpens the mind. Strengthens the sense organs. Causes secretions & salivation. Is Light, Hot & Unctuous. Good for the heart, digestion and assimilation. Helps dispel gas. Increases thirst, Sensitivity of teeth, Closure of eyes, Liquefaction of kapha, Toxicosis of blood, Edema, Ulceration, Heartburn & Acidity. You become weak and giddy. It also may cause itching and irritation, thirst, and blood toxicity.


Effect of Six Tastes: Salty
Taste: Property Source/Example Effect on Tridosha Actions Salty (saline) (Water + Fire)
Heating Table salt, Sea Salt, Rock Salt, Kelp, sea weeds. Decreases Vata Increases Pitta Increases Kapha

A basic unit of electricity, salt helps retain moisture in vata. Helps digestion. Acts as an Anti-spasmodic & Laxative. Promotes Salivation, Nullifies the Effect of All Other Tastes. Retains Water. Heavy. Unctuous, Hot. Excess salt can aggravate skin conditions, weaken the system, cause wrinkling of the skin and graying and failing out of hair. It promotes inflammatory skin diseases, gout, and other Pitta disorders. Disturbs Blood, Causes fainting & heating of the body. Causes peptic ulcer, rash, pimples & hypertension.


Effect of Six Tastes: Pungent
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Taste: Property Source/Example Effect on Tridosha

Pungent (Fire + Air)
Heating Onion, Radish, Chili, Ginger, Garlic, Asafoetida, Cayenne Pepper, black pepper, mustard. Increases Vata Increases Pitta Decreases Kapha


Stimulates appetite and improves digestion. Like salt and sour, pungent improves the taste of food. Gives mental clarity. Helps cure Kapha disorders such as obesity, sluggish digestion, excess water in the body. Improves circulation. Is germicidal, stops itching, facilitates sweating and elimination of ama (toxic accumulations). Keeps the mouth clean. Purifies the blood, cures skin disease, helps to eliminate blood clots, cleanses the body. Light, Hot, Unctuous. Too much pungent taste can cause weakness, feeling of weariness, impurities, burning sensations in the body. Increases Heat, sweating, can cause a peptic ulcer, dizziness & unconsciousness.


Effect of Six Tastes: Bitter
Taste: Property Source/Example Effect on Tridosha Bitter (Air + Ether)
Cooling Dandelion Root, Holy Thistle, Yellow Dock, Rhubarb, bitter melon, greens such as Romaine lettuce, spinach, and chard, Fresh Turmeric Root, Fenugreek, Gentian Root. Increases Vata Decreases Pitta Decreases Kapha


Considered to be one of the most healing tastes for many kind of imbalances in the mind-body. Bitter foods and herbs are drying and cooling and create lightness. Promotes other tastes. Acts as an Antitoxic & Germicidal. Is an antidote for Fainting, Itching & Burning Sensations in the body. Relieves thirst. Good for reducing fevers. Promotes digestion. Cleansing to the blood and helps remove ama in system. Too much bitterness can cause dehydration. It can also Increase roughness, emaciation, dryness. Reduces bone marrow & semen. Can cause dizziness & Eventual unconsciousness


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Effect of Six Tastes: Astringent
Taste: Property Source/Example Effect on Tridosha Astringent (Air+ Earth)
Cooling Unripe Banana, Cranberries, Pomegranate, Myrrh, Goldenseal, Turmeric, Okra, Beans, Mace, Parsley, Saffron, Basil, and Alum. Increases Vata Decreases Pitta Decreases Kapha


Astringent foods and herbs squeeze out water. Drying and firming, astringent taste stops diarrhea, reduces sweating, and slows or stops bleeding. (Causes constriction of blood vessels, Coagulation of blood.) Anti-inflammatory. Promotes healing. Has a sedative action, but is constipative, Is Dry, Rough, Cold. Excess astringent is weakening and causes premature aging. Its drying effect causes constipation and retention of gas. Promotes dry mouth. Promotes Vata disorders such as paralysis and spasms. Obstruction of speech. Too much astringent taste can adversely affect the heart.


Ayurvedic Treatments Panchakarma
Steps in Panchakarma Pretreatment Yodlee Confidential 21

Therapeutic vomiting (Vamana) Purgation Therapy (Vireka, Virechan, herbal laxative therapy) Enema (Basti) Nasal Administration - Nasya (herbal inhalation therapy) Blood Letting (Rakta Moksha) Panchakarma Panchakarma is a Sanskrit word that means "five actions" or "five treatments." This is a process used to clean the body of toxic materials left by disease and poor nutrition. Ayurveda says that imbalanced doshas create waste matter. This waste matter is called Ama in Ayurveda. Ama is a foul-smelling, sticky, noxious substance that needs to be evacuated from the body as thoroughly as possible. Panchakarma will stick out the excess doshas (or imbalances in the dosha) along with the sticky Ama out of your system by means of the body waste evacuation channels such as sweat glands, urinary tract, intestines, etc. Panchakarma is, thus, a balancing operation. It involves daily massages and oil baths and is extremely pleasant experience. Ayurveda recommends Panchakarma as a seasonal treatment for toning your mind body system. (This is like a tune up for the car.) Steps in Panchakarma Panchakarma is a five-fold therapy; it is highly personalized based on the needs of the individual depending on the body type, dosha imbalances etc. Usually, only parts of the five therapies are needed. Pretreatment Prior to starting Panchakarma, oiling and heating of the patient is done to bring the excess doshas from the limbs to their proper reservoirs in the digestive tract, from which they can be expelled. The doshas are then excited by a procedure called utkleshana, a therapy that makes the excess dosha anxious to leave the body. One to three nights prior to the start of Vamana, the patient is asked to drink one cup of oil two to three times a day until the stool becomes oily, or he feels nauseated (This treatment is called oleation or sneehana). Kapagenic diet is given to aggravate Kapha. On the morning of the Panchakarma, kapha aggravating foods such as basmati rice and yogurt with salt is given to further aggravate the kapha. Oil massage and fomentation are administered on the night before the day of Vamana. The application of the heat to the chest and back will liquefy kapha. Therapeutic vomiting (Vamana) This treatment is used when there is congestion in the lungs causing repeated attacks of bronchitis, cough, cold or asthma. The objective of the therapy is to induce vomiting to get rid of the mucus causing excess kapha. A drink consisting of licorice and honey, or calamus root tea is given to the patient. (Other substances used include salt, and cardamom) Vomiting is induced by rubbing on the tongue. 4-8 vomiting is the target. After vomiting the patient will feel very comfortable; most of the congestion, wheezing and breathlessness will disappear along with the clearing of the sinus. Therapeutic vomiting is used for cough, cold, symptoms of asthma, fever, nausea, loss of appetite, anemia, poisoning, skin diseases, diabetes, lymphatic obstruction, chronic indigestion, Yodlee Confidential 22

edema (swelling), epilepsy (between attacks), chronic sinus problems, and for repeated attacks of tonsillitis. Purgation Therapy (Vireka, Virechan, herbal laxative therapy) Virechan is the cleansing of the pitta and the purification of the blood toxins. Generally, it is administered three days after the Vamana treatment. If Vamana therapy is not needed, Virechan can be administered directly. Virechan cleanses the sweat glands, small intestine, colon, kidneys, stomach, liver, and spleen. A number of fine herbs are used as a laxative. These include senna, prune, bran, flaxseed husk, dandelion root, psyllium seed, cow's milk, salt, castor oil, raisins and mango juice. When taking these laxatives, it is important to adhere to restricted diet. Vireka is used for treatment of skin diseases, chronic fever, piles, abdominal tumors, worms, gout, jaundice, gastrointestinal problems, constipation, and irritable bowel syndrome. Enema (Basti) Medicated enemas are used for various specific reasons. In general, this treatment is used to flush the loosened doshas out through the intestinal tract. There are over 100 specific enemas listed in Ayurveda. Basti involves introducing medicinal substances such as sesame oil, calamus oil, or other herbal decoctions in a liquid medium into the rectum. Basti is especially good for vata disorders. It alleviates constipation, distention, chronic fever, the common cold, sexual disorders, kidney stones, heart pain, vomiting, backache, neck pain and hyper acidity. Such vata disorders as sciatica, arthritis, rheumatism, and gout can also be treated by Basti. There are about 80 vata related disorders in Ayurveda. About 80 percent of them can be treated with medicated enemas. Since vata is mainly located in the colon and bones, the medication is administered rectally. Type of Enemas: Oil Enema or Nirhua Basti - 1/2 to 1 cup of warm sesame oil (for chronic constipation) Decoction enema or Anuvasana Basti (Herbal enema) - 1/2 cup of gotu kola or comfrey decoction with 1/2 cup of warm sesame oil Nutrition Enema - 1 cup of warm milk, 1 cup of meat broth or 1 cup of bone marrow soup The enema should not be given to persons suffering from chronic indigestion, bleeding from rectum, cough, breathlessness, diarrhea, diabetes, severe anemia, to aged or to children under 7. Don't give decoction enemas to people suffering from acute fever, diarrhea, cold, paralysis, heart pain, or severe pain in the abdomen. Nasal Administration Nasya (herbal inhalation therapy) This treatment involves inhaling vapor from medicinal herbs that have been infused in boiling water. It is used mostly to eliminate kapha-oriented problems, of ear, eyes, nose, and throat disorders such as migraine, sinusitis, catarrh, and bronchitis. The nose is the gateway to the brain and to consciousness. Prana, or life energy, enters the body through breath taken in through the nose. Nasal administration of medication helps to correct the disorders of prana affecting the higher cerebral, sensory and motor functions. Nasya is indicated for dryness of the nose, sinus congestion, hoarseness, migraine headache, convulsions and certain eye and ear problems. Yodlee Confidential 23

Types of Nasya

1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6.

Virechan (cleansing with use of powders or herbs) Nutritional Nasya (for vata) Sedative Nasya Nasya decoctions Ghee or oil Nasya Nasal massage

Substances such as calamus powder, gotu kola, onion, garlic, black pepper, cayenne, ginger, ghee oil decoctions are used in Nasya. Nasal medication should not be administered after a bath, food, sex, drinking alcohol, during pregnancy, or menstruation. Blood Letting (Rakta Moksha) Blood letting is used to eliminate toxins that are absorbed into the bloodstream through the gastrointestinal tract. This process purifies the blood. It is used for disorders such as repeated attacks of skin disorders such as urticaria, rash, eczema, acne, scabies, leucoderma, chronic itching, and hives. It was also found effective for enlarged liver and spleen, and for gout. Blood letting, which should only be administered by a qualified physician, is useful to relieve several pitta disorders such as acne and rash. If administered properly, it stimulates the antitoxic substances in the blood stream, thus developing the immune mechanism in the blood system. Do not administer blood letting in cases of anemia, edema, weakness or to very old and very young persons.

Sweat Treatments (swedana)
Sweating leads the doshas to fluidity, making it easier for it to flow out of the system. It opens up the pores and rid the body of impurities through the sweat glands. There are two principal ways of inducing the sweat.

1. External application of heat or retention of body heat such as by exercise, use of heavy
clothes or blankets, fasting, use of alcohol etc.

2. Active heating done within a well heated chamber, medicated steam, sauna, hot water
bottle, sunbathing, exposure to fire (or use of an infra red lamp), plasters of hot substances such as mustard, hot baths, or showers (especially with medicated oil or water), and hot packs. Plants such as castor root, barley, sesame, black gram, jujube and the drumstick plant all encourage the body to sweat more easily. Do not administer therapeutic sweating to persons who are pregnant, persons with bleeding disorders, who have used alcohol recently, persons who are very fat or very thin, persons with diarrhea, jaundice, anemia. It is also not recommended for people who are very angry, hateful or jealous. Patients suffering from fainting, dizziness, nausea, fever, and similar ailments should not undergo the sweat therapy.

Oil Massage (Abhiyanga)

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Abhiyanga is a massage done by experienced massage therapists using herbal oil. The oil is specially selected for the particular body constitution. The process is long and thorough. More force is used to loosen the excess doshas and direct them toward the organs of elimination. There is a related treatment called Shirodhara, in which warm, herbalized sesame oil is dripped in a stream onto the forehead to profoundly relax the nervous system and balance the Prana Vata, the dosha that exerts control over the brain.

This breaks down into two types of preparatory treatment: "Snehana" and "swedana." Snehana involves massaging herbal oils into the skin to help eliminate toxins. Blended oils treat specific disorders such as stress, anxiety, insomnia, arthritis, or circulation problems. Oils can also be massaged into the scalp for depression, insomnia, and memory problems. Snehana can sometimes involve lying in an oil bath, which is thought to be even more effective for you to absorb the herbal oils' properties. Swedana means sweating. It is sometimes used with the oil treatment, but on a separate day. Steam baths encourage the elimination of toxins through the pores and together with the oil treatments, they make the detoxification more effective. (see the description above).

Samana (Herbal Remedies)
After detoxification the practitioner may prescribe herbal or mineral remedies to correct imbalances in the doshas. These have the necessary medicinal qualities to stimulate agni and restore balance in the doshas. They are not prescribed to eradicate disease because the disease is just a symptom of dosha imbalance. Herbal remedies are usually prescribed in liquid form or as dried herbs, although they can also come as powder or tablets. The ingredients are pre-prepared, but the blends are prescribed individually. Each ingredient is classified by the effect it has on lowering or increasing levels of the doshas. Prescriptions are usually made up of groups of herbs, to which you add eight cups of water and boil until the liquid is reduced to one cup. You may have to take the remedy two or three times a day. Most Ayurvedic practitioners will also advise you on lifestyle, food and exercise. There is no one healthy diet in Ayurveda, just a diet that is suitable for you. It is important to eat to suit your constitution and the practitioner may prepare a special diet sheet for you. Exercise, such as yoga, is also important for physical and emotional health and the practitioner will advise on the exercise that is best suited to your constitution.

Ayurvedic Diagnosis
A skilled Ayurvedic Practitioner uses several techniques to determine your current condition as well as any imbalances in your doshas. These are used to augment the questions he or she asks during consultation to determine your dosha type. The auxiliary diagnostic techniques employed in Ayurveda are: Pulse Diagnosis Tongue Diagnosis Yodlee Confidential 25

Facial Diagnosis Nail Diagnosis Lip Diagnosis (Ostha) Eye Diagnosis Ayurvedic practitioners also employ other diagnostic techniques such as palpation, percussion, auscultation along with examination of the heart, liver, spleen, kidney, urine, stool, sputum, sweat, and speech.

Pulse Diagnosis
Pulse Diagnosis is a very important tool used by all Oriental Medical Practitioners. It is a very important tool used by Chinese and Tibetan Health Practitioners as well as Conventional medical doctors. To a skilled practitioner, taking your pulse is more than counting the beats. The functioning and health of the entire mind body constitution can be determined from the pulse, including the balance of the doshas, the health of the various organs, advance warning signs of potential problems that may crop up later etc. By detecting early symptoms of imbalance and disease reaction in the body, one can take preventive steps to correct the problem before it manifests into a major one. Radial pulse is felt with the first three fingers, the index, middle and ring fingers. Pulse from both wrists are taken. To get an accurate pulse, the patient should be as close to his norm as possible. Taking pulse after strong exertion, after exposure to a severe environment etc. will give wrong indications. The position of the index finger denotes the Vata dosha. When vata is strong in the constitution, the index finger will feel the pulse strongly. The pulse will be irregular and thin moving in waves like the motion of a serpent. This type of pulse is called a snake pulse. The middle finger denotes the pulse corresponding to the Pitta dosha. When the person has a predominant pitta constitution, the pulse under the middle finger will be stronger. Ayurveda describes this pulse as "active, excited, and move like jumping of a frog." This pulse is called frog pulse. When the throbbing of the pulse under the ring finger is most noticeable, it is a sign of Kapha constitution. The pulse feels strong and its movement resembles the floating of a swan. Hence, this pulse is called swan pulse.

Tongue Diagnosis
The tongue is the organ of taste and speech. Size, shape, contour, surface, margins, and color are the characteristics one can observe on the tongue. A pale tongue may indicate an anemic condition or lack of blood in the body. An yellowish tongue may suggest that excess bile present in the gallbladder or a possible liver disorder. A blue tongue is normally an indication of problems with the heart. Different areas of the tongue corresponds to different organs of the body. Hence by correlating the location of the blemishes on the tongue, the Ayurvedic practitioner can determine which organs of the body are out of balance. Yodlee Confidential 26

A whitish tongue indicates Kapha imbalance and mucus accumulation. A red or yellow green tongue indicated a Pitta imbalance. A vata imbalance is manifested by a black to brown coloration on the tongue. If the tongue is covered by a coating, it may indicate the presence of toxins in the stomach, small intestine or large intestine. If the posterior part of the tongue is coated, it will indicate that toxins are present in the large intestine. If the middle of the tongue is coated, the toxins are present in the stomach and in the small intestine.

Facial Diagnosis
Ayurveda teaches that face is the mirror of the mind. Disorders and disease is manifested on the face in the form of lines, wrinkles, etc. For example, horizontal wrinkling on the forehead indicates the presence of deep-seated worries and anxieties. A vertical line between the eyebrows on the right side indicates repressed emotions in the liver. On the other hand, the presence of a vertical line between the eyebrows on the left side will indicate that the spleen is holding in emotions. A full and fluffy lower eyelids is an indication of impaired kidneys. A butterfly-like discoloration on the nose or on the cheeks may signal mal-absorption of iron or the folic acid and the sign of a low agni (fire). The nose can be used to determine the dosha of a person. Vata persons have crooked nose. Kapha persons have a blunt nose. On the other hand, a sharp nose may denote a person with Pitta dosha.

Nail Diagnosis
Ayurveda considers nails as the waste product of the bones. If the nails are dry, crooked, rough and break easily, it indicated a predominance of the vata constitution. Soft, pink, tender nails that are easily bent are indication of a Pitta constitution. When the nails are thick, strong, soft and very shiny, then Kapha predominates. Longitudinal lines on the nails indicate mal-absorption in the digestive system. Transverse grooves on the nails may indicate the presence of long-standing illness or malnutrition. Yellow nails indicate a delicate liver or jaundice. Blue nails are manifestation of a weak heart. Undue redness shows an excess of red blood cells.

Lip Diagnosis (OSTHA)
If the lips are dry and rough, it may indicate dehydration or vata imbalance. Pale lips indicate anemia. Repeated attacks of inflammatory patches along the margins of the lips indicates the presence of herpes and a chronic Pitta derangement. Poor digestion of worms in the colon are indicated by the presence of multiple pale brown spots on the lips. A person with jaundice will have yellow lips. Blue lips may signal heart problems.

Eye Diagnosis
Vata eyes are characterized by small, nervous, with drooping eyelids and dry, scanty lashes. The white of the eye is muddy, while the iris is dark, gray-brown or black. Pitta eyes are moderate in Yodlee Confidential 27

size. They are sharp, lustrous, and sensitive to light. The lashes are scanty and oily. The iris is red or yellowish. Kapha eyes are large, beautiful and moist. They have long, thick, oily lashes. The white of the eye is very white. The iris is pale, blue or black. Excessive blinking is a sign of nervousness, anxiety or fear. A drooping upper eyelid indicates a sense of insecurity, fear or lack of confidence. These are all signs of vata imbalance. Prominent eyes indicate thyroid gland dysfunction. An yellow conjunctiva may signal a weak liver. A small iris indicates weak joints. A white ring around the iris may mean an excessive intake of salt or sugar. If the white ring is very prominent and very white, it is an indication of joint degeneration with potential for arthritis and joint pain.

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