Panchakarma – The Ancient Art of Detoxification in Ayurveda

Detoxification is an important aspect of promoting and ensuring holistic health. In fact, it has been practised for centuries. In India, detoxification is performed as Panchakarma, a purification system that means ‘five therapies’: Vamana, Nasya, Virechana, Ratamoskhana, and Basti. Vamana removes Kapha toxins found in the respiratory system and the rest of the body-toxins that cause skin disorders, obesity, allergies, and asthma. The main goal of Panchakarma is to detoxify the body to get rid of all the impurities that may have accumulated over a period of time. It is believed that a healthy body cleared of toxins makes a person happy and capable of making sound judgements. Regular detox also ensures that all organs are functioning well.

Many factors in today’s modern and fast-paced lifestyle can make it more difficult for our bodies to completely digest our food, feel our emotions, and enjoy leisure activities. As a result, the body accumulates toxins that are stored in the tissues and cause feelings of discomfort, low energy levels, and other indicators of stress. Panchakarma can rid your system of these toxins and make you feel better.

Based on Ayurveda texts, the best times to seek Panchakarma treatment is in spring and fall, but it can really be done anytime. Regular Panchakarma treatment can do wonders for your overall health.

Kerala Panchakarma is administered in two sets of therapies, namely Fomentation and Oleation. The former uses therapies that make you sweat, and the latter involves the application of special oils to your body. The following basic Ayurvedic treatments are provided:

1. Herbal steam fomentation – Here, you will be advised to sit in a steam chamber with herbal steam, which will rejuvenate your body, relieve stress, and eliminate toxins.

2. Shirodhara – This therapy involves the pouring of warm oil on your forehead from 30 minutes to an hour.

3. Abhyanga – This is a body massage performed with a special medicinal oil. The massage can focus on certain parts of the body, like the arms, head, and joints.

4. Pizhichil – Medicated oils are used together with gentle manipulation on the body to help reduce tension, promote calmness, and relax the muscles.

5. Potli – Special bags of herbs are used in this massage. They are heated in oil before being applied to your body through a massage to help reduce stress, nourish the body, and relieve pain.

To make the most of Panchakarma treatment, consider completely tuning out from the world and staying under the radar. Avoid TV, radio, internet, social media to avoid further stress, and avoid reading books. Instead, use your free time to reflect on your life and the events in your life to allow your own story to inspire and entertain you.

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