Ancient medicine teaches us that the absence of disease is not the same as having complete health. Complete health is about physical, mental, emotional, sensory and spiritual balance. This philosophy is different from what we, Westerners, are used to. During your annual exam, your doctor takes your blood pressure, checks your basic functioning and releases you with a clean bill of health. You’re fine, right?
Watch for unusual sensations and symptoms
It depends. One of the first sentences I heard when I started studying in Ayurveda. (And it is one of the most frequently used ones.) Unusual sensations or symptoms may be signs that not everything is fine and dandy.
If you’re in tune with your body, you may feel that something is off. Pay attention to those signs. For example, you may be experiencing heart palpitations but all your tests come back negative. Then, after a few weeks (and lots of rest and little stress), your symptoms may go away. Other times, you may experience something “weird” briefly and not even give it a second thought. These “that was weird” moments are your body’s way of telling you that it may need some TLC. Tender loving care means bringing your body and mind back into balance.
25 telltale signs that you’re out of balance
First and foremost, don’t freak out! There are many reasons why your body may go out of balance. There are external factors, such as the changing of the seasons, and internal factors, such as certain lifestyle and diet choices.
I’m sharing here some of the lesser-known signs so that you can learn to recognize them early. This list is not exhaustive:
- Feeling of heaviness in the body (e.g., heaviness, lethargy)
- Feeling of dryness in the body (e.g., throat, skin)
- Heat or burning sensation in the body (e.g., eyes, legs)
- Ears: ringing, fluttering or other noise sensations
- Eyes: twitching, flickering or other movement sensations
- Heart palpitations
- Swelling (e.g., around eyes, ankles)
- Sour belching and taste in mouth
- Astringent taste in mouth
- Excess discharges (e.g., sweating, tears, oozing, salivation, drooling, frequent urination)
- Too little discharge (e.g., lack of sweating, scanty urination, deer pellet-like feces)
- Digestion and elimination disturbances (e.g., gas, constipation, incomplete elimination, first elimination later in the day, bloating, diarrhea, too light/dark color of urine or stool)
- Abnormal discoloration (e.g., discoloration of skin, tongue, ears, and of/around eyes)
- Changes in skin condition, breakouts, hives and other skin disorders
- Eating disturbances (e.g., lack of appetite, lack of appreciation of taste)
- Changes in circulation
- Itching (e.g., wet itching: athlete’s foot, dry itching: rough, dry skin)
- Frequent or persistent anger
- Brain fog
- Frequent insomnia (or interrupted sleep)
- Racing mind
Balancing your body, mind, senses and soul is the main mission of Ayurveda, a 6000-year old medical system. When unbalanced and unmanaged, these sensations and symptoms may become more severe, more frequent and more complex, and potentially lead to disease. It may take a long time—years and even decades for disease to develop.
The concept of self-healing
Thankfully, there’s the concept of self-healing. If you give your body the space and time it needs, it can work to stop and possibly even reverse the signs of imbalance.Staying #healthy is a constant balancing act #wellness Click To Tweet
Sleep and rest are important. Finding just the right pace of life is important. Managing your stressors is important—otherwise they will manage you. Eating the right foods, at the right time and in the right manner is important.
All these practices boil down to one key thing: improving your digestive power, which includes the process of digestion, absorption and elimination. Your digestive power is the foundation of health.
When you improve your digestive power, you give yourself the chance to stop and even reverse imbalances in your body. The sooner you spot these imbalances and the sooner you take action, the better. Not convinced? Allopathic medicine is starting to turn the corner when it comes to the link between gut health and overall health. An increasing number of articles and allopathic research studies are starting to pop up online, showing the relationship between our gut, and mental and physical health. Recognizing gut health as a contributor to our overall well-being is a start. Now, allopathic and natural medicine need to work together to complete the rest of the story.
Disclaimer: this blog is not intended as medical advice or opinion. It merely aims to share the definition of health from Ayurveda, an ancient system that uses lifestyle, nutrition, herbs and other processes to address imbalances in the body.
Image by Marcelo Gerpe, freeimages.com