Frequently Asked Questions
Questions about Ayurveda and Yoga
What is Ayurveda?
Ayurveda, or Traditional Indian Medicine, is a form of alternative or complementary health care depending on how it’s used. It is believed to be the original holistic medicine. Ayurveda teaches that to be healthy and happy we must feed ourselves and live our lives in a way that supports our unique constitution with the goal of integrating body, mind, and spirit. Its approach includes herbal remedies, mindfulness, meditation, and yoga. Ayurvedic body work includes Ayurvedic acupressure (marma point therapy) and warm herbal oil therapies like abhyanga and shirodhara among many others.
Is Ayurveda effective?
Yes! Ayurveda has been tested over thousands of years and passed down through the generations because of its effectiveness. It remains the traditional medicine in India. Ayurveda remains relevant as it teaches common sense practices like eating whole foods, getting good sleep, managing energy and stress, exercising, etc.
Is Ayurveda safe?
Yes! Ayurveda relies mostly on whole foods and mindful lifestyle approaches that are very safe and everything suggested is optional. There has been evidence that some Ayurvedic medicines made in India had traces of lead due to old manufacturing equipment. We recommend using caution when buying medicines made in India for this reason.
Is Ayurveda scientifically proven?
More research is needed to create a substantial body of science-based evidence to support Ayurveda’s efficacy; however, there have been several successful studies and many more are now underway. For example, Ayurveda has been researched for breast cancer prevention as well as in recovery care for cancer survivors, type 2 diabetes, Parkinson’s, epilepsy, and rheumatoid arthritis. Many herbs are being researched including Turmeric and Ashwagandha. (links needed)
Is Ayurvedic consultation and treatments covered by insurance?
Not yet. However, if you are managing a diagnosed disease condition you can request a letter of medical necessity to submit to your insurance company for reimbursement. We recommend clients refer to their HRA or Health Reimbursement Agreement if they have one.
Can I use my Health or Flex Savings Account to pay for Ayurveda services or products?
You may use your FSA or HSA account to purchase Ayurvedic products. Check with your insurance to be sure. Ayurvedic services are not covered at this time.
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Is Ayurveda religious?
Ayurveda was developed thousands of years ago in India and sprang from the same ancient texts as Hinduism, Buddhism, and Jainism. It believes that there is more to us than the body and the mind; it recognizes individual consciousness and a universal consciousness as well. Due to this there is a spiritual side to Ayurveda. No affiliation with any religion is required to practice or benefit from Ayurveda.
Are Ayurveda practitioners licensed?
No, they are not licensed in any US state. Qualified practitioners are certified through extensive training accredited by the National Ayurvedic Medical Association. To find a qualified practitioner, look for the proper credentials: Ayurvedic Health Counselor (AHC), Certified Ayurvedic Practitioner (CAP), or Ayurvedic Doctor (AD) and NAMA affiliation and/or training. Ayurveda is recognized in Health Freedom legislation in twelve states. Learn more at https://nationalhealthfreedomaction.org/state-organizations/
What can Ayurveda cure or treat?
Ayurveda does not claim to cure or treat any disease or symptom. As a holistic medicine, it addresses the whole individual that encompasses the body, mind, and spirit and their inherent energies. Ayurveda believes that illness comes from a misalignment of these energies. Health and wellbeing is a natural occurrence when there is harmony between all layers of existence in an individual.
How is Ayurveda different from Chinese Medicine?
Ayurveda, or Traditional Indian Medicine, and Traditional Chinese Medicine share roots and was spread through trade routes between India and China thousands of years ago. There are many similarities yet they are significantly different. They both address energies of the body, mind and spirit but recognize them differently. They use different herbs. They recognize different energy centers and pressure points of the body and mind. They can work well together as long as there is transparency between practitioners in regards to a treatment program. For example, a client who is undergoing Ayurvedic consultation could benefit from Acupuncture and Chinese herbs. Transversely, someone who is using Acupuncture could also use Ayurvedic acupressure and herbs.
What is an Ayurvedic diet?
An Ayurvedic diet is based on whole foods, most of which are plant based like grains, legumes, vegetables, greens, nuts, and seeds. Dairy products are optional and used in moderation including ghee, yogurt, and milk. The Ayurvedic diet can be suited to any diet including vegan, lactose intolerant, and gluten intolerant. It is not synonymous with Indian cuisine although Ayurveda still favors many of its dishes like kitchari and dal.