Later when the food is half-digested, a second type of reaction which is sour, sets in and the digested food now passes into the intestine, with a liquid substance called pitta appearing in it.
When, at last, what is left of the food reaches the large intestine, it begins to dry up and is converted into a dry mass. During this process, a third type of re action sets in, which is bitter and astringent; vata appears at this time.
Kapha, pitta, and vata, collectively known as the doshas or tridoshas. Each dosha predominates in a particular part of the body: kapha in the chest, pitta in the digestive organs, vata in the large intestine.
The doshas play a supporting role in the body when they are in a proper proportion. However, if present in abnormal proportions, they upset the equilibrium and cause different diseases.
In the treatment of diseases, the Ayurvedic physician tries to correct the diagnosed imbalances through appropriate diet and drugs.
Ayurvedic medicines are mostly derived from vegetable sources though mineral compounds and sometimes sources of animal origin are also used. These are dispensed in a number of powders, solutions, decoctions, fermented liquids, pills, medicated oils, ghees.
According to Ayurveda, drugs act on the body through the influence of their rasa (taste), vipaka (post-digestive taste), virya (potency), and prabhava (special action).
Herbal Beauty Products:
The same herbal cosmetics described in the classical Indian poetry and literature written hundreds of years ago are still popular in India today, and many of these skin, hair, and body treatments were first identified and popularized by early practitioners of Ayurveda.
All the plants from which Ayurveda extracts its cosmetics perform a medicinal and purifying function as well. For instance, the henna paste used by Indian women to color their hair and to paint the intricate patterns on their skin, which make them more desirable according to the Indian school of erotics, is the same cooling paste recommended by Ayurveda as a cure for the skin rashes brought on by summer heat.
Ayurveda lays strong emphasis on rejuvenation through the preservation of the body’s natural oils, so Indian women wash their faces with a soap substitute made from turmeric that helps the skin to retain these vital oils. Also, turmeric possesses antibacterial properties that disinfect the skin while cleansing it. Other plants used in hair and shampoos are known to have antifungal properties, still others are known to be useful against clogged pores or scalp infections.
The traditional facial treatments used by Indian women are linked to Ayurveda’s plant pharmacopoeia. There are facial treatments which heal sores, acnes, and other blemishes while beautifying the complexion. Certain cosmetics cure pigment deficiencies, others fade scars and spots.
As these are natural products, the chances of unpleasant side effects are much reduced, especially when compared to those of their chemical counterparts marketed so aggressively all over the world.
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