Stress and Ayurveda: A Holistic Approach To Managing Stress
NEW DELHI, (IANS) – Stress, known as SAHASA in Ayurveda, is the body and mind’s physical response to events occurring in our lives. It has a detrimental effect on immunity and makes the body more vulnerable to diseases. Ayurveda emphasizes the connection between emotions and body organs. When negative emotions are suppressed and not processed, they can lead to stress on the organs and contribute to the development of diseases. According to Ayurveda, stress is a disturbance of the nervous system governed by the Vata dosha. Ayurvedic techniques for managing stress not only restore harmony to the body and mind but also promote inner fulfillment.
Ayurvedic treatments serve two main purposes:
Maintaining the health of a healthy individual.
Treating the disease of an individual who is unwell.
Ayurvedic lifestyle recommendations for stress management achieve both objectives. According to Ayurveda, life is a harmonious union of the body, mind, and soul. Ayurveda advises making lifestyle changes to achieve a balanced state, such as following a regular schedule for activities like sleeping and waking up, adopting a balanced meal plan, engaging in suitable exercise, and ensuring sufficient rest.
Ayurvedic treatments for stress management, known as Manashanti Chikitsa, focus on alleviating the ill-effects caused by mental strain, including stress, insomnia, lack of concentration, fatigue, and headaches, while promoting overall mental health. The treatment course for Manashanti Chikitsa follows three stages:
Poorvakarma (preparatory phase): Internal and external oleation (Snehanam) and therapeutic sweating (Swedanam) prepare the body for toxin removal.
Shodana (cleansing or eliminating phase): Based on the individual’s body type and overall health, the doctor selects the appropriate cleansing procedure or Panchakarma treatment. This stage aims to balance the doshas (body constitution) and eliminate toxins.
Samana or Paschatkarma (corrective and rejuvenation phase): During this final stage, the body gradually transitions out of the intense cleansing and elimination phase. It involves the use of corrective medications, moderate therapeutic treatments, a healthy diet, and yoga asanas to revitalize the body.
By addressing the physical, mental, and emotional aspects of stress, Ayurveda offers a holistic approach to stress management. It seeks to restore balance and harmony within the individual, promoting overall well-being and inner fulfillment.