A Brief History of Ayurveda


Image: Minervah

Ayurveda is a very old holistic (whole-body) healing science, basically it is a science of life developed at least 5,000 years ago in India. It is based on the belief that health and wellness depends on a delicate balance between the mind, body and spirt. Ayurveda has 2 main principles: that the mind and the body are inextricably connected AND nothing has more power to heal and transform the body than the mind. Within the Ayurveda methodology, the hair is a secondary vital tissue closely linked to both the bone marrow and the central nervous system.

Ayurveda is a holistic system for the hair and body and seeing that I am all about the hair, yeap you guessed it… am just going to focus on the hair.

Ayurveda has many herbs, natural powders and oils that can be used to treat the hair for many different concerns such as, hair health, hair fall/loss, growth, thickness, coloring, cleansing, conditioning and moisturizing.

Ayurvedic herbs are broken down by doshas which are three energies that circulate in the human body and govern physiological activity. The doshas are Vata, Pitta and Kapha and the human hair falls into these 3 doshas.

Vata is characterized as hair that is dry, thin, frizzy, prone to split – ends and hair loss. Vata is accountable for movement and motion. An imbalance in Vata is associated with dryness and nutrient depletion. This can lead to dry hair with scant Sebum, leading to split-ends and frizziness.

Pitta is characterized as hair that is thin, prone to hair loss and premature graying. Pitta is responsible for metabolic activity in hair follicles including production of hair proteins and pigment. So an imbalance in Pitta can lead to inflammation along different parts of the hair shaft and the root. As a result, the hair is thinned and hair loss occurs.

Kapha is characterized as hair that is very thick and oily but can also be characterized as lifeless. Kapha is accountable for strength, structure and lubrication of hair. An imbalance in Kapha makes the hair too oily.  Also, an imbalance of Kapha can be an indication of poorly functioning agni, also known as manda agni, which leads to a buildup of ama (toxins), that can affect hair growth.