According to Ayurveda, disease or health disorders can occur due to the accumulation of toxins in the body. Toxins are generated in our bodies with the exposure to the environment around us. It could be in the form of chemicals or pollutants in the air. Another major source of toxins is the food we consume. The food we eat needs to be digested well. If digestion is impaired then it can lead to toxins being accumulated. To ensure good health, it is required to detoxify the body periodically. This is suggested not just for people who are sick but even for those who are healthy to help cleanse them of toxins and recharge them. Detoxification can be done by undergoing panchakarma treatment.
Panchakarma Treatment is a classic Ayurveda detoxification treatment and includes five major procedures. It is designed to purify the whole body by eliminating the accumulated toxins from it. It is a residential treatment programme performed under the supervision of experienced ayurvedic practitioners. This helps in ensuring the best possible results. Those who are suffering from serious problems or feel the need to have a complete detox should opt for this treatment. The ideal duration for carrying out the Panchakarma is 14 days – 6 days for preparation, 1day purge and 7 days for the build-up and healthy lifestyle phase.
The specialty of this treatment is that it can be administered both to a healthy, and an ailing person. When a healthy person is subjected to Panchakarma, it has a preventive, restorative and rejuvenative effect on the body, whilst for an ailing person, it has curative benefits.
Panchakarma Therapies results in metabolism speeding up, purification of the blood, de-stressing and focusing the mind. It helps in weight loss mainly due to elimination of extra fat, results in glowing skin, thick hair and you feel calmer. Panchakarma helps to cleanse the channels of secretion and excretion and thereby helping optimize the unhindered movement of the lymph, the hormones, blood and electrical conductivity of the sensory and motor neurons. It also helps in the removal of the worn out tissues and cells which are effectively replaced with fresh ones. The overall effect of the treatment is rejuvenating making you look and feel young.
The three stages in Panchakarma are – Purva karma (Preparatory stage), Pradhana karma (Main Therapy) and Paschat karma (Rejuvenation).
At the beginning of the therapy, the body is prepared for the actual process of elimination. This is done by the following processes, administered for the first 4 -5 days:
The purpose of these treatments is to keep the digestive fire at its best, by means of oral medication. Deepana helps in increasing the digestive power while Pachana digests the Ama (toxins).
Pizhichil includes Snehana (Oleation) and Swedana (Sudation). These are the most important preparatory measures prior to the Panchakarma therapy.
Snehana is done externally and internally. External Oleation (bahya snehana) includes various types of whole body therapies like Abhyanga (synchronized massage). Medicated ghee or oils are also administered orally for the purpose of internal oleation (snehapana). Both these methods lubricate the body channels and loosen the toxins accumulated in the body.
Sudation includes Njavarakizhi, Choorna swedam, Pathrapotala swedam etc. Apart from this, localized therapies like Shirodhara, Shirovasti, Greeva vasti, Kati vasti,Netra tarpanam, Thailam and Lepanam can be also done in specific cases.