Ayurveda is the Indian traditional system of medicine and has a history since the 2nd century BC. The core pathophysiological principles of Ayurveda surround the concept of loss of balance with respect to the three Doshas Tridoshas), five elements (Pancha mahabhutas), and seven tissues (Saptadhatus) of the human body. Various Ayurvedic treatments are described for diseases affecting different systems of the body, and most Ayurvedic medicinal items are sourced from natural ingredients. Classical texts of Ayurveda also have mentions about management of epidemics and have defined ‘immunity (Bala)’ as the ‘ability of the body to prevent and arrest the progression of disease for maintaining homeostasis’. Few facts, such as the classification of immune system in Ayurveda into Sahaja (innate), Kalaja (chronobiologic), and Yuktikrut (acquired) closely resembling the modern medical classification of immune system and Ayurvedic immune-boosting preparations such as Chyavanaprasha, Kushmanda Rasayan, etc having stood the test of time, are testaments to the near-accurate understanding of our body’s immune system by the ancient Ayurveda pioneers.
Proper digestion is the cornerstone of health in Ayurveda. What we don’t properly digest and assimilate (food and emotions) turns into toxic buildup, or ama, in the body. Over time, this creates the optimal environment for diseases to manifest. Ama prevents us from connecting to our body’s underlying intelligence and natural ability to heal.
On the other hand, the end product of perfect digestion is called ojas. Ojas translates to physical strength and good health. It is said to be the connection between consciousness and matter, and the essence of the 7 dhatus of the body. Ojas gives us glowing skin, energy, strong immunity, balanced emotions and cognition.
Ojas is one of our three vital essences, along with Prana and Tejas. These are the beneficial forms of the three doshas (vata,pitta and kapha) .
In order for our body to reduce ama and boost ojas, it needs to have strong agni, or digestive fire. According to Ayurveda, impaired agni is the root cause of all disease. It is agni that determines what substances enter and exit all cells of the body. In this way, the role of agni in Ayurveda is to be the watchguard of life.
So to maintain the immunity one should maintain tridoshas,Ojas and Agni.