Agni and Mental Health
You may ask what does agni have to do with the mind and mental health?
In ayurveda, there are thousands of agnis that are in every cell of your body. The agnis for your mind are geared towards the assimilation , digestion or transformation and elimination of thoughts , feeling and emotions. Having said that you must also consider the agnis or digestive fires in your body when thinking of mental health.
The proper digestion and assimilation has its affects on your thoughts and feelings. So the place to start is to make sure your digestion is working properly. This means if you have bloating, acid reflux, indigestion constipation , diarrhea or any other GI issues it will not only affect the cells of your body but the functioning of your mind.
In the mind there are two main sub dosha that will effect how thought and feelings are imprinted on your mind. One is Sadaka pitta, a function of Pitta and the other is Tarpaka Kapha, a function of the kapha dosha. The prana vayu bring impressions from the senses into the mind and through buddhi help with discriminate into your thought process. The Tarpaka pitta will write the impressions into the memory. The first step in impression intake is the the senses are functioning properly and that you are using your senses properly. this mean that there is not an overuse or under use of the five senses and the the agni of both sadaka and tarpaka are balanced.
Lets get bak to food. If you are not eating foods appropriate to your dosha or if you food habits are not correct, like eating at inappropriate times then your mind will be affected. always take into consideration the foods you are eating and how you are eating them. A perfect example is that if you have a pitta predominant dosha and you eat too many sour, salty and spicy foods then it will create raja guna and this will lead to more anger, irritability and judgement. Rajas is a subtle expression of the Pitta dosha. Another example is the over use of sweet and oily foods can disrupt the kapha dosha and create tamas which lethargy in the mind, depression or attachment. so diet is the first place to look when thought in the mind are not functioning properly. Also all the food that you consume has consciousness and every cell has consciousness. Fast food, processed food and microwaved foods do not have consciousness.
This is not the only protocol to heal mental health. You must also look at all the subtle therapies that Ayurveda has to offer. These include color and sound therapy ( mantra and music), touch abhyanga) and gem therapy and meditation. If mental health has larger effects on you as in heightened anxiety, depression or issues like bi polar you may want to use Ayurveda herbs and seach professional western help. By finding an Ayurveda profession that will help with diet and lifestyle choices you can have the best of both worlds.
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