(Last Updated on : 06/12/2010)
Vamana is one of the five main procedures of Panchakarma
. It is actually one of the least understood Ayurveda's five elimination therapies. People wrongly associate emesis or vomiting with nausea and sickness. However, Ayurveda
states that the emesis procedure that is used in vamana therapy of Panchakarma is quite painless and smooth, with a very little nausea or discomfort. It is the procedure for discharging excess kaphic aama
and it was specifically designed to be accomplished with great ease. It usually takes place in the upper portion that is the kapha zone of the body and it generally uses the upward movement of the doshas to eliminate aama from the body. If the body is completely prepared and if the treatment is correctly administered then vamana is simply effortless and it effectively removes the toxins from the kapha zone of the body.
It is described in Ayurveda that the toxins associated with kapha are primarily but not exclusively deposited throughout the upper part of the body. During the kapha dominant periods mainly twice a day, doshic action draws kapha related toxins into the hollow structure of the stomach from the denser tissues. As this is the zone where the kaphic aama collects naturally and Panchakarma uses the vamana therapy or the therapeutic vomiting to eradicate them. This procedure is considered as easy as the mouth offers the easiest and the most direct way of discharging these types of toxins.
The herbs that are used to produce the emetic effect give the main keys to successful vamana. Popular herbs such as madan phal (Randia Dymotorum) and yashti madhu (licorice) motivate the action of agni and vayu bhuta. These herbs are strong, penetrating and hot and their action pervades the fine channels in the kapha zone and stirs up and liquefies the aama. As fire always moves in the upward direction, the heating action of these herbs generates an upward motion that lifts aama out of the kapha's seat in the stomach. Vamana is usually administered particularly for kapha related disorders or aama. These comprise allergies, all lung problems, diabetes mellitus, bronchial asthma, chronic colds, arthritis, chronic skin disorders, rheumatic diseases, acute abdominal diseases and more. It is also beneficial for vital disorders of the body.
Vamana procedure is mainly recommended in the spring season since there is a natural increase of kapha dosha in this season. In a disease having predominance of Kapha Dosha, Vamana can be administered at any time after performing 'Snehana' and 'Swedana'. Vamana therapy is contraindicated for people who are very thin or weak, elderly people who are weak, young children and pregnant women also. Moreover, people with tuberculosis, hepatitis, pleurisy, cirrhotic or degenerative diseases, collapsed lung and problems with blood pressure should not undertake this therapy. People who have a major vata
imbalance should also avoid this procedure.
In Ayurveda, vamana therapy is administered for removing the toxins and wastes of the body. In simple terms it is described as therapeutic emesis.