Ayurveda has become one of the new buzzwords in health over the past few years, and I’ve seen it pop up on social media, women’s magazines, and TV programmes. Ayurveda, Sanskrit for the science of life, is an alternative medicine, originating in India where a large portion of the population still use its principles today. The basic idea is that the body is composed of three elements, Vata, Pitta, and Kapha, and everybody has a different balance of the three depending on our personal traits. Disease and illness comes when these elements, or Doshas, are out of whack and can be re-balanced by eating different foods and lifestyle changes.
I was curious about Ayurveda. I’m always curious about alternative medicine if a little sceptical. I’m sure there are some benefits to be found, but I find it dangerous when it’s presented as a cure-all. I’d found a class called Ayurveda Principles of Diet and Lifestyle on Udemy (an online platform for classes on everything, that has a sale on practically every week) that got good reviews so I decided to dip my toe in.
There was a bit too much of the course to get through in one day, but nevertheless, I managed to learn a fair bit. I learned about the above doshas and how they’re related to the different elements, and parts of the body. There was also a little quiz so that you could try and determine your dominate dosha, and then a very comprehensive look at which food tastes (sour, bitter, sweet, astringent, salty, and pungent) are beneficial to which dosha. I’ve got to be honest, it was a lot of information to try and take in at once, and some of it definitely went over my head. From what I’ve seen so far, a lot of it seemed to be on what to eat to lose/or gain weight, which honestly is a bit off-putting, but I guess it makes sense in the context of the body’s overall health.
Despite some reservations, I found learning about Ayurveda, and how our food can affect our body depending on our dosha, fascinating. I don’t believe that our health and well-being can be dictated not only by what’s going on in our body, but by what shape our eyes are, or if we have a good sense of humour or not, yet I do think having some spicy food to speed up digestion makes sense. I’m definitely going to learn a bit more, as I’m curious as to how yoga and meditation can be related to Ayurveda too.