What is a Panchakarma ?!
The prerequisite for a profound healing process is to cleanse the body of all waste products and toxins, as it is done in the case of a simple wound. A special Ayurveda program is administered for this purpose. During the Panchakarma cure, the body's self-cleansing and self-healing powers are stimulated and supported and the doshas are harmonized through various therapies. Doshas are the three basic principles in Ayurveda point of view, which are the base for health when they are in balance and precipitate diseases when beyond certain levels of imbalance.
All food that we ingest are de-constructed through digestion. The vital substances are absorbed by the body and the rest is excreted. This functions so when digestion and metabolism functions perfectly. In Ayurveda perspective, when the digestive and metabolic reactions happen in certain circumstances where the ideal conditions are missing, unnatural reactions take place developing unnatural products. The natural metabolic, detoxing and excreting processes of the body are not designed for the management of these elements. Elimination of such waste products accumulating through time, unhealthy food and habits are to be expelled time to time for proper maintenance of health, beauty and longevity of life. When over accumulation of such toxins cause diseases, deep cleansing is the first step necessary for a permanent or long lasting cure.
In Ayurveda, certain methods were developed to remove such substances from the body. These are used in the Panchakarma cure. “Panchakarma” literally means “the five actions”. These actions are aimed at deep cleansing in which waste products and toxins are removed from the body. Panchakarma is used in Ayurveda both to heal diseases and as a preventive measure. Before cleansing, there is a preparatory stage in which pure or medicated (processed with herbs) Ghee or oil is given daily for few days, to take it in the early morning before break-fast. The patient is given certain herbal preparations and the natural excretory function is stimulated through virechana (drainage) and swedana (sweating). In certain cases a reversal of the elimination vamana (vomiting) may also be indicated. These measures intensify the element agni or fire and stimulate fat metabolism, liver function and other functions, so that fat-soluble waste products (Which are more likely to stay within) can be excreted from the body. In addition to the cleansing treatments, a Panchakrama cure is also combined with various other treatments that usually follow the cleansing.
The last part of the Panchakarma cure includes treatments that are intended to strengthen and regenerate. The type of ghee or oil to take, the quantity, duration, etc, and the therapies needed, etc. are decided by the Ayurveda expert after a detailed consultation. A classical panchakrama cure should ideally last 4 - 5 weeks. Some of the treatments that are part of a panchakrama are here.