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          Friday, October 31, 2014

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SAPTA DHATUS
Tissue formation is a sequential process

The process of tissue formation, as described by Ayurveda, is as simple as sound logic. Tissues are called dhatus, and these are seven in number. The first tissue that is formed makes way for the formation of another, and the chain ends at the seventh tissue. Expectedly, the responsibility of building up the best tissues rests on the first one, which is known as rasa dhatu or plasma.

Rasa dhatu is created by the ahara rasa or the essence of food which, if loosely transliterated, means digestible nutrients derived by the ahara or food we take. Quality food provides you quality rasa and that, in turn, leads to a succession of favorable events through your digestive process.

All tissues are formed in the ascending order of complexity, aided by a number of internal and external factors. For example, shukra dhatus or semen, the last of all dhatus is the finer product formed after rest of the six dhatus have been formed in the body. The sequence goes somewhat like this:

-- Food, after ingestion, forms AHARA RASA
-- Ahara rasa forms RASA DHATU (Plasma)
-- Rasa dhatus forms RAKTA DHATU (Blood cells)
-- Rakta dhatu forms MAMSA DHATU (Muscle tissues)
-- Mamsa dhatu forms MEDHA DHATU (Fatty tissues)
-- Medha dhatu forms ASTHI DHATU (Bones)
-- Asthi dhatu forms MAJJA DHATU (Bone marrow and nervous tissues), and finally
-- Majja dhatu forms SHUKRA DHATU (Reproductive tissues)

The factors that lead the ingested food to the formation of ahara rasa and beyond are collectively known as Ahara Parinamakara Bhavas. If the process is impaired at any stage, ama (toxins produced on account of undigested food entering the body) is produced instead of ahara rasa. Too much of ama within the body is too many diseases. Dhatus have to be free from ama if you want to be in good health.

Each dhatuís functioning is triggered by its own dhatu agni or energy that moves the process ahead. On the way, and as part of the process, each dhatu gives rise to a upadhatu or a sub-tissue, which is though is structurally important yet not significant enough to aid in the occurrence, or help in the alleviation, of a disease. Examples of some upadhatus include hair, nails, ligaments, and so on.

Each dhatu is further made up of infinite paramanus, which find their modern correlate in the cells, protoplasm and so on. Paramanu contains innumerable suksma srotas or channels, which become its entry and exit points for taking in nutrients and expelling out used, waste matter. The striking similarities of the body physiology written 5000 years ago and that which is quite recent should instill a greater degree of trust in the us who always look for evidence-based Ayurveda. Isnít Ayurveda itself evidencing?
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