Ayurveda (pronounced Aa-yur-vay-da) is said to be a world medicine. It is the most comprehensive, holistic medical system, derived on the Indian subcontinent some 5000-6000 years ago.
Ayurveda is a Sanskrit word derived from two roots: ayus which means life or life cycle and vid which means knowledge. So Ayurveda is the knowledge of daily living and the life cycle- a system of achieving and maintaining health.
Ayurveda teaches that health is maintained by balance of three subtle energies or forces, known as Vata, Pitta, and Kapha. The purpose of Ayurveda is to bring these forces into harmony so that they promote physical, emotional and spiritual growth. All Ayurvedic treatments are designed to return these forces to a harmonious balance rather than concentrate on what their imbalance manifests. Thus it focuses on causes rather than symptoms. As each individual has their own particular balance or blend of these three forces, Ayurvedic treatments are personal, rather than disorder specific.
Such an approach has proven effective over the centuries and as a result, many of Ayurveda’s healing regimens have been adopted and refined by peoples all over the world.