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The History and the principles of Ayurvedic medicine


Ayurvedic medicine is one of the oldest forms of alternative therapy, historically coming from India. This ancient form of healing looks at life “ayur” and knowledge “veda” throughout its thousands of year old history. It is a medicine that examines and explores the interconnectedness of all living beings, their function, and the relationship with the universe and environment around them. It considers all aspects as influential within this system.

The history of Ayurvedic medicine

The history of Ayurvedic medicine dates back many years to the 2nd Century BC. It’s roots began from ancient teachings and philosophical Hindu teachings. Much of the knowledge that comprises Ayurveda was gained through spiritual practices and deep meditation. It has been developed through the revealing of deep truths about human physiology and health, in these spiritual practices.

The origin of Ayurveda teaching are considered to be divine knowledge provided by the ancient Hindu god Brahma, who is regarded as the creator of the universe. The original writings of Veda, or knowledge, are said to be over 1200 thousand years old, and are still in use today.

Ayurvedic knowledge comes from 4 Vedas: the Yajur Veda, Rig Veda, Sam Veda, and Atharva Veda. The most well known Veda is the Rig Veda, which comprises knowledge and healing properties of various herbal medicines.

The basic principles of Ayurveda

The basic principles of Ayurvedic medicine believe that everything in the universe is composed of five elements. These elements are described as air (Vayu), water (Jala), space (Aakash), earth (Prithvi), and fire (Teja).  These 5 elements then give rise to the 3 humors of the body. The three humors are collectively referred to as the Tridoshas and include the Vata dosha, the Pitta dosha, and the Kapha dosha. The three doshas are responsible for the physiological functions of the body.

Ayurveda is a medicine that considers the intricate dynamic relationship between an individual, their lifestyle, and their environment. It has many options in order to treat and rebalance order within a being, and uses what is called a Panchakarma method. This method looks at a step by step process in order to rejuvenate and prepare the body, followed by the main therapy or treatment, and then last includes the restoration of digestive and absorptive abilities of the body.

Ayurvedic medicine and its principles are in alignment with many other alternative therapies, and have gained global popularity extending beyond its birth countries.

Topics: Ayurveda

Doctor Allison Galan

Written by Doctor Allison Galan

Dr. Allison Galan is a licensed ND practicing in Calgary. She has a passion for empowering her patients to be their own catalyst for change, while supporting them in their health and wellness goals. She believes wholeheartedly in the mind-body connection, which is an integral component of her practice. Allison graduated from the Canadian College of Naturopathic Medicine, and also holds a Bachelor of Science in Kinesiology. She is a member in good standing in the CNDA and the CAND.