Body Purification

Body purification treatments prove to be highly effective in eliminating the ama and the doshic excesses produced during the metabolic processes and also the impurities accumulated in the body. These body treatments help the body to release and eliminate toxins completely and to rebalance the doshas that have gone out of balance due to the accumulation of toxins and metabolic wastes.

Ayurveda views poor metabolism as the key to the build up of toxins or ama which is the cause of many complex diseases. Periodic Panchakarma treatments are effective both for preventive and curative purposes as well as for sukhachikalsa (Rejuvenation and energizing the body). However, if these panchakarma treatments are not taken at full length and under the proper guidance of Ayurveda doctors, it can damage the body tissues.

Body purification or Panchakarma is a group of 5 treatments- vamana, virechana, snehavasti, kashayavasti and nasya respectively. Vamana is emesis, virechana is purging, vasti is enema, out of which two kinds are done with medicated oils and medicated decoctions called snehavasti and kashayavasti respectively. Nasya is instillation of medicines through the nose. Susrutha who initiated surgery gives importance to blood-letting also as one of the panchakarma treatments.

Diagnosis - the Ayurveda way

Panchakarma is much more than a cleansing regimen. It slows down aging process, strengthens immune system, prevents wrinkles of skin, develops a positive attitude to life, improves digestion and appetite, improves sleep pattern, energizes the body, replaces stress and strain with peace and tranquility, enhances flexibility of joints and muscles, reduce weight, removes fat and helps live healthy.

Treatment Methods for Body purification

In the initial consultation which takes more than an hour, a detailed evaluation is made through questions on personal history, case history and pulse and tongue diagnosis to identify imbalances of dosha. Ayurveda diagnosis comprises of clinical and laboratory test also.

A preliminary consultation with Ayurveda doctors online is also possible nowadays for guests worldwide.

Based on the findings, the Ayurveda doctor develops a personalized and unique Ayurvedic therapeutic plan. The doctor would decide the sets of treatments that suit the body constitution depending on ailment, age, sex etc. Identifying the body type or dosha, would be the first thing that a doctor does during his consultation.

This therapeutic plan is comprehensive of Panchakarma treatments and includes diet, nutritional supplements, herbal medicines, yoga prescription, daily health-routine, and relaxation techniques.

Extra precautions are taken by doctors for people with specific type of ailment. Ayurveda recommends that pregnant women should not undergo Panchakarma treatments. Women should also be careful to plan their treatment to avoid menstrual disturbances during the course

Treatment procedures

Bodypurification or Panchakarma has three phases of actions:

1. Pre-purification phase.
2. Main purification phase.
3. The Post purification phase.

Panchakarma treatments are administered over a period of 5 to 28 days or even more. Any treatment below this period would be of little effect and may cause damages to body tissues.

Panchakarma for Body Purification

Pre-Purification Phase

Sirodhara Luke warm herbal oil is poured in a continuous stream onto the forehead, while receiving a gentle massage on the fore head.

Snehapanam is the oral intake of specially prepared medicated ghee (clarified butter) in empty stomach. It is done to lubricate all body channels to push out body toxins.

Thailadhara is a continuous showering and massaging process of the whole body using warm medicated oil to activate the muscles and nerve endings. White lead wort, malabar nut, liquorice, sesame oil etc. are the commonly used ingredients.

Thakradhara induces coolness to the brain, relaxes the mind, and reduces mental stress and increases memory power. Thakradhara means the profuse pouring of medicine-rich buttermilk on the personís forehead.

Thalam treats headaches, cerebrum-vascular diseases, insomnia, ENT diseases, vertigo etc.

In Thalapothichil the personís scalp is completely applied with high value medicinal pastes. Heals problems related to the head and neck regions. Udvarthanam This is a typical deep and dry massage using herbal powders. This massage stimulates hair follicles and subcutaneous fat tissue to break down subcutaneous fat storage.

Upanahasweda comprises of the local application of a medicinal paste to treat pain and swelling.

Main purification phase

This phase comprises the Panchakarma. Depending on the ailments, one is advised to undergo two or three of the Panchakarma therapies. The doctor decides on the type of treatments suitable for a particular type of person. Ayurveda doctors have to monitor these treatments. Treatments without expert guidance can lead to complications.

Nasyam in ayurveda refers to the instillation of medicated oil through the nose. It is the best procedure for the treatment of sirorogas i.e., sodhana of urdhvanga. Nasyam helps to discard the mucous toxins from head and neck channels.

In Pancha karma therapy, nasyam treatment involves application of warm oil to the shoulder and neck of the patient with the patient lying supine and tips his head back. Lightly warmed oil is dropped into each nostril. The patient should inhale deeply. The usual dose is 8 drops but this varies according to the disease and its nature. The timings are morning in kapha diseases, noon in pitta diseases and evening in vata diseases. After the nosy, the shoulder, face, palm and sole of limbs should be massaged briskly for few minutes. . Dhoomapana and gargling with hot water should be done afterwards. Nasya should not be done continuously for more than seven days.

It should also be noted that panchakarma treatments should not be administered to children under 8 years and to those over 80.

Vamanam induced vomiting and is the first in panchakarma treatments. This process is to be done carefully and needs skilled personnel. It induces expulsion of the contents in the stomach through the mouth. Kapha or kapha dominant diseases like psoriasis, urticaria, bronchial asthma, mental disorders etc can be effectively treated by vamanam treatments. Besides, it also removes wastes from the upper body parts like the chest and lungs area. It is a very effective form of body purification treatment.

Vamanam is a continuation of the sneha sweda done the previous day. After administering sneha sweda, the patient is given kapha increasing foods. The next morning, after ablutions and a hot water bath, the patient would be asked to sit in a relaxed manner in an armchair. Milk or sugar cane juice is commonly used for this purpose. The patient drinks as much milk as he can. Then a paste of madana phala, along with yashtimadhu powder vacha, rock salt and honey mixed with milk would be given. Within a short time, the patient feels nauseous and starts vomiting. All impure accumulated kapha will come out. Normally eight bouts are seen. Vomiting is stopped when the pitta or yellow colouration is seen, which is considered the correct symptom. If the bouts are less, vomiting should be done by irritating the uvula by touching with the fingers or a quill. Then allow the patient to wash his face and fingers with hot water.

Then dhoomapana is done. The smoke should be inhaled through one nostril and exhaled through the mouth which is repeated thrice.

This is followed by paschat-karma. These are mainly food restrictions, called samsarjana kriya. Just after vamana, if the patient is hungry, thin gruel is given. After ascertaining the digestive power, thick gruel, porridge, porridge with meat soup are given. The entire treatment takes 15 days.

However, vamanam is not advisable for pregnant women, the aged , the weak and those suffering from cardiac problems.

Virechanam in body purification is a purgation treatment using herbal medicines. It expels impurities from mid zones of the body like the liver, gallbladder and the intestinal tract. Pitta and pitta dominant diseases are cured by this pancha karma treatment. In virechanam, the vitiated doshas are made to pass through the anus. Poorvakarma as done in vamana is also done in virechanam. Though several drugs are mentioned for virechana, trivrit is considered the best and several trivrit combinations are used. It is to be noted that the medicine is given only when the last meal has been digested. . Avipathy churna, another medicine, mixed with hot water is given after 9 a.m. No food is given till virechana is over. In proper virechana, the patient passes urine, stool, pitta, medicine, kapha and vata in that order. About 20 purges may be seen. However, it all depends on the patient's health.

Another mild form of virechana is also used as an ayurvedic therapy. It is commonly used to treat various kinds of ailments in which poorvakarma are not necessary.

Kashaya Vasthi

Diseases like hemiplegia and those due to vata are treated well with vasti. However, acute diarrheas, chest lesions, piles, hiccups, are not treated. For Kashaya vasti, honey, rock salt, sneham, paste of medicines are required and is mixed one by one in the above order. An emulsion is made by churning all and warming in a water bath. This should be taken on an empty stomach at about 10 a.m. Application is the same as snehavasti. When the bowels are clear, the patient is allowed to take a hot water bath. This should be done after two or three snehavastis. Sneham, paste of medicines and kashayam noted above are selected as per disease and stage.

Vasthi the most important of the therapies in Panchakarma involves the introduction of herbal oils and decoctions into the colon through the rectum.

Kateevasthi is a warm oil treatment done by retaining certain amount of warm medicated oil on the lower back of the body, for about 40 to 50 minutes. Sirovasti is the retention of warm medicated oil over the head for a certain amount of time is a warm oil treatment done by retaining certain amount of warm medicated oil on the lower back of the body for about 40 to 50 minutes. Sirovasti is the retention of warm medicated oil over the head for a certain amount of time.

Urovasti. A mixture of warm herbal oil is allowed to stay on the chest with the help of herbal paste enclosure.

Post purification phase

Once the Body purification treatments are over, rehabilitative measures are given which include guidelines on diet, lifestyle and other things. If not followed the effects of the treatments would diminish. Doctors prescribe various Ayurveda formulations such as kashayams lehyams etc. to fortify body cells and tissues, massage oils and kuzhambu for body and joint lubrication.

Rasayana or Rejuvenation Therapy

For getting maximum results out of the Rasayana therapy, the two main forms oushadh (Medicines) and Acharyas (Behavior/deeds) need to be followed. Medicines and diet prescribed by doctors have to be taken and these have effects on the body tissues, digestive juices, doshas etc, while the behavior or habit of a person influences the mind, soul and sensory faculties.

Ayurveda offers extensive Rasayana therapies. The aim of Rasayana is to keep the enzymes in the tissue cells in their normal functioning condition. It nourishes, restores and balances the body functions and maintains the overall health and well being of an individual. Mind is made calm and peaceful, nerves and bones are kept soft and sooth. These, to a very large extend, prevent the ageing process and also free the person from diseases even during an advanced age.

The person will be able to see things like before and the sharpness of hearing and vision continues. The glow in his face and the colour of his skin remains as before. It is with this in view one has to resort to rejuvenation therapy. There are case histories were persons of 65 years could increase testosterones level from 190 to 300.

Two forms of Rasayana treatments are presently available: the shorter version (Vaataatapika) and the longer version (Kuteepraaveshika).

Oral medicines for Body Purification

Herbal medicines form an important part of any ayurvedic treatment. Oral medicines for Stress Management will be extracts of pure medicinal herbs, leaves, spices etc. These are prepared specifically to restore the lost balance and to provide the needed inputs to cure Stress Management. Kashayam and Arishtam - herbal decoctions and fermentations Lehyams Ė semi solid formulation are commonly prescribed.

Neem, ginger, amaltas, nutmeg, liquorices, gooseberry, bael etc are some of the medicinal herbs used in the preparation of kashayams, lehyams and arishtams for the use of Stress Management patients.

The type and quantity of the medicines to be taken are decided by the doctor after a detailed consultation and examination. The patientís body type, age etc are also important factors to be considered.

Diet Regulation for Body Purification

Foods and germinated wheat are recommended. Raw root vegetables, whole wheat bread, cheese, butter, honey, and raw milk are recommended. Juice of fresh fruits and vegetables should be consumed in large quantities Stress Management patients are advised to stick to a pure, natural and wholesome diet, low in fat and cholesterol. They should strictly avoid alcohol, salt, sweets, tobacco etc. A diet of natural foods and germinated wheat are recommended. Raw root vegetables, whole wheat bread, cheese, butter, honey, and raw milk are recommended. Juice of fresh fruits and vegetables should be consumed in large quantities.

Yoga and Life Style for Body Purification

Yoga and Meditation are proven and effective way to develop and maintain perfect harmony and balance in our body systems. It provides us with immunity against all diseases. It alters brain wave activities reflecting in increased relaxation and a better focused mind. It is known to reduce fatigue in Stress Management patients. The commonly suggested yoga postures for stress Management patients are Shavasana (corpse pose) and Halva Asana (Plough pose). Yoga Nidra is also highly recommended as it makes the mind calm and tension free.

Life style: Stress Management patients are recommended to avoid tension and worry in their daily lives. Developing a sense of humour, establishing meaningful relationships with others, enjoying the beauties of nature, keeping pets, spending more time with family and taking part in recreational activities will effectively reduce stress in individuals.

It is advised to take at least one or two weeks of rest after the Panchakarma experience. During this time the body is weak after a purification process

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