Mind//Body Healing Experiece: Panchakarma

Image for post
Image for post

I’m not sure when I first heard about a Panchakarma, but it’s been on my list of *Fun Things To Try* for a couple years now. The more I’ve been interested in Ayurvedic Medicine, the more I felt called to exeperience this mind//body healing. I always assumed that I needed to go to California or India ++ set aside an entire week for this treatment, so I was SHOCKED when I randomly decided to google *Panchakarma Chicago* ++ found out that I could do this in Chicago [++ with a discount! I bought the 3x90 minute sessions.]

But first — what is a Panchakarma?

“Panchakarma is the ultimate mind-body healing experience for detoxifying the body, strengthening the immune system, + restoring balance + well-being. It is one the most effective healing modality in Ayurvedic Medicine. It promotes detoxification + rejuvenation.“

According to ayurveda, good health depends upon our capability to fully metabolize all aspects of life [food, stress, environment, experiences, + emotions], taking in that which nourishes, + eliminating the rest.

The problem is, so many of us have elimination issues [not only with food, but with our mind + heart] — it’s hard to fully release emotional baggage. Therefore, these toxins accumulate in our body + create imbalances… + ultimately, if we aren’t taking care of ourselves, disease.

Panchakarmas are traditionally done seasonally, but my doctor said that every year or every two years would be beneficial for me as a way to maintain mental + physical balance.

So, what did my Panchakarma look like?! See below : )

Day 1

  • Consultation to determine my dosa [I’m a vata pitta]
  • Abhyanga [herbal-oil massage… she basically rubbed an entire bottle of sesame oil on my body : )]
  • Nasya [herbs + oil drops, inhaled through the nose — clears the sinuses]
  • Swedana [herbalized steam bath] — your head is outside the *box* while your body is heated to remove mental, emotional + physical toxins… I thought I was going to pass out, it’s SO HOT
  • Basti [herbal ENEMA… I seriously loved this!]

Day 2

  • Abhyanga
  • Nasya
  • Swedana
  • Brown, thick *drink* — not sure what this was… but it helped with eliminating toxins

Day 3

  • Abhyanga
  • Nasya
  • Swedana
  • Shirodhara [warm herbalized oil that drips on your forehead, calming mind, body, + spirit — it’s SUPER meditative]
  • Basti [another EMENA ; )]

While the massages + hot seam bath was incredibly enjoyable, after the first day, my *third eye* was throbbing, + I had flu-like symptoms. I also was SO emotional the second day… I cried the entire day. Unfortunately this is normal — it’s called a healing crisis: “occurs when a large quantity of toxins that have been locked in your tissues for years are released into the system for elimation. As these toxins are expelled, you may experience insomnia, flu-like symptoms, or a feverish feeling. You may notice some emotional mood swings or experience intense feelings. Do not be alarmed — this is both a natural + necessary part of tissue cleansing.”

So… yeah : ) While I didn’t fully love the ill feeling + crying for an entire day, it made me feel better knowing that I was getting rid of toxins. After the third day, I felt totally back to normal physically + emotionally, with a newfound sense of peace + ease + rejuvenation.

I’m already excited to do another Panchakarma! I want to do a full 7 day treatment next time [the 3 day was perfect for the first time!], AND I want to use it as a full week of ~everything~ detox [digital, relationships, work, etc]. I totally get why people use this as a sacred personal time [love Jordan from The Balanced Blonde’s approach — read here] because you do gain clarity on your purpose + connection to the earth. While I did receive insight, I know that I can go deeper by completing retreating from the world, + solely going inward.

Have you done a Panchakarma? Would love to hear your thoughts! ❤

Rooting for you always,

++ Elisabeth

Written by

Get the Medium app

A button that says 'Download on the App Store', and if clicked it will lead you to the iOS App store
A button that says 'Get it on, Google Play', and if clicked it will lead you to the Google Play store