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Ayurveda: the ultimate in self care

Updated: Dec 30, 2017

Ayurveda is a 5,000 year old system of healing that comes from India and is known as the science of life. In Sanskrit, the word ayus means ‘life’ and veda means ‘knowledge’. It is known as the sister science to Yoga. The ultimate goal of Yoga is self-realization or Samadhi, union or Oneness. Ayurveda is a body of wisdom integrating and balancing the environement, mind, body, and spirit so that the body can heal itself.

Each of us is born with a certain constitution. This is what is known in Sanskrit as your prakriti, your own blue print. Prakriti gives insight into what qualities you possess and what you need to be balanced in mind and body. In Ayurveda, one’s individual nature is reflected their body type, or dosha. The doshas reflect three main governing principles of nature, called vata (space-air), pitta (fire-water) and kapha (earth-water). Space or Ether, Air, Fire, Water, and Earth represent the five possible states of matter. Your constitution is the particular combination of vata, pitta, and kapha that is established within you at conception, and remains constant over your lifetime. It represents your natural state of equilibrium, your blueprint for perfect health.

All three doshas are present in everyone, but the ratio between them varies from one person to the next.

Ayurveda offers many other practices for expanding self-awareness and cultivating your innate state of balance. Meditation is one of the ancient tools of Ayurveda for balancing the mind and body. It offers mental clarity and calms the nervous system. According to Ayurveda, sleep is also considered very important for mind-body balance.  During sleep, our body repairs, processes what happened that day, and rejuvenates itself. Lack of sleep weakens our immune system and speeds up the aging process, throwing us off balance.

Knowing your prakriti allows you to make informed choices about diet, exercise, and your lifestyle.  You can learn more about Ayurveda and find out how to identify your own individual type here.

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