In the last article, we discussed how imbalance is the cause of disease. Let us now delve a little on the factors which create an imbalance in the body.
Our body exists because of impurities (dosh). So for the soul to exist in the manifested Creation, impurity is required. It is this impurity which gives rise to desires that further give rise to experiences in the normal life.
Vat occupies the most prominent place out of the three doshas as the diseases caused by the vat are more serious and acute in nature. Said to cause the maximum number of diseases in the body, this is the carrier of imbalance because of its mobile nature. The other two doshas, pitt and kaph are unable to move from their position without the aid of vat.
Vat or vayu as the name indicates is by nature dry, cold, light, subtle, mobile, expansive and coarse. It is vat that enables to feel and perform all actions and movements of the body, internal as well as external, including working of organs. Pain can be because of an imbalanced pitt and kaph also, but, without the contribution of vat it cannot be perceived or felt, because, for the mind to perceive any sensation of pain, vat has to carry it. To distinguish the pain caused by vat from pitt and kaph the position of the pain is observed. If the pain keeps shifting, it is definitely because of a disturbed vat.
A person of vat prakriti can be recognized by the characteristics associated with the vat. He or she will be hyperactive, talkative, will have dry skin, thin frame, light, rough and lusterless hair, irritable in nature, has trembling in the body and very often dreams about flying.
Diseases caused by any doshas are cured by drugs of opposite qualities. So, aggravated vat is reconciled by medicines which are hot, sharp and/or liquid in nature.
Though the healthy body is said to be in a state of equilibrium, doshas are always increasing or decreasing at different points of time. There is dominance of kaph in childhood, pitt in middle age and vat in old age. There is also change in their dominance through the day. The first part of the day is dominated by kaph, the afternoon by pitt and night by vat. As the key to health is balance, the diets and regimens should be planned keeping the state of doshas in mind at specific time and age. Likewise, things which increase kaph should not be taken early in the morning, those that increase pitt in afternoon and vat aggravating foods at night. One who resorts to a balanced diet and regimen in accordance with nature and his or her own prakriti can rarely fall sick.
We will talk more about doshas and their properties in the next issue.
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- My job involves a lot of travel, so I am unable to have much control over my diet. Hence I suffer from constipation and often have to resort to laxatives. Is there a remedy that is easy to fit in with my schedule?
- You can make gulkand at home and carry it with you on travels. Take equal quantity of rose petals and shakkar (sugar) and crush them with your hands. Then put the mixture in an earthen or ceramic pot. Cover the pot with a double layer of cloth and put in the sun for 15-20 days. Once ready you can take a spoonful of gulkand with warm water every evening.
The following cause an increase in vat in our body.
Channa, muttar, besan ladoo, peanuts, stale food, excessive fasting, excessive tension, grief and keeping awake at night.