Ayurveda

At Chopra Addiction and Wellness Center you will discover the timeless wisdom of Ayurveda, an ancient healing system that originated in India 5,000 years ago.  The meaning of Ayurveda is derived from the Sanskrit words Ayus meaning life and Veda meaning wisdom or knowledge. Thus the literal translation is the knowledge or the wisdom of life.

Ayurveda offers a proven guide for a life of vibrant health, happiness, love and purpose.  It is unique in the sense that it focuses on the individual as a whole; physically, emotionally and spiritually. Ayurveda uses various techniques and medical procedures to unlock the human potential that has been buried within a being in order to bring about healing and a return to wholeness.  From the Ayurvedic perspective, human beings are not viewed as merely thinking physical machines, but rather as fields of intelligence in constant vibrant exchange with the energy and information of the Universe.

Ayurveda views health as a state of dynamic balance of all the layers of life – balance of body, mind and spirit with the environment. At birth we are all intrinsically in balance but as we go through life, physical stress, emotional turbulence and trauma, and non-nurturing life choices can all lead to a lack of balance and integration between body, mind, spirit and environment.  If left untreated, this imbalance can manifest itself as physical or emotional distress, addictive behaviours and eventually dis-ease or chronic illness. By integrating and aligning all the layers of life, Ayurveda’s system of healing will bring you back to optimal health.

According to the timeless healing traditions of Ayurveda the field of pure consciousness expresses itself through the five elements of nature: space, air, fire, water and earth. The five elements organize themselves into three essential principles of movement, transformation and protection. In Sanskrit these principles are called Doshas : Vata, Pitta and Kapha. They are responsible for every function of our mind and body. Each of us has a unique proportion of these three forces that shapes our nature. If Vata is dominant in our system, we tend to be thin, light, enthusiastic, energetic, and changeable. If Pitta predominates in our nature, we tend to be intense, intelligent, and goal-oriented and we have a strong appetite for life. When Kapha prevails, we tend to be easy-going, methodical, and nurturing.  Although each of us has all three forces, most people have one or two elements that predominate.

For each element, there is a balanced and imbalance expression. When Vata is balanced, a person is lively and creative, but when there is too much movement in the system, a person tends to experience anxiety, insomnia, dry skin, constipation, and difficulty focusing. When Pitta is functioning in a balanced manner, a person is warm, friendly, disciplined, a good leader, and a good speaker. When Pitta is out of balance, a person tends to be compulsive and irritable and may suffer from indigestion or an inflammatory condition. When Kapha is balanced, a person is sweet, supportive, and stable but when Kapha is out of balance, a person may experience sluggishness, weight gain, and sinus congestion.

Chopra Addiction and Wellness Center is one of those unique places in the West that has adopted these Ayurvedic principles to promote healing, self-discovery and emotional release. Many of these ancient healing methods have been incorporated into the daily program at the Center to enhance the overall well-being of our guests.

The Ayurvedic practices followed at the Center provide you with an understanding of your unique mind-body constitution and how you interact with the environment. A simple questionnaire can help you determine which ayurvedic element is most lively in your nature. Take the Dosha Quiz here. Answer the following questions as honestly as possible and see which element(s) receives the highest score.

According to the teachings of Ayurveda, it is important to keep the body in constant rhythm with nature. That means getting up early in the morning, doing yoga, meditation, having a light breakfast and then proceeding to your daily activities.  Here at the Center all guests usually arise around 7am and then attend yoga and meditation. Lunch is always served at noon (digestion being at its highest peak) and dinner at 5:30 (enabling easy digestion before bed). This routine allows the body and mind to get into a constant rhythm where it is waking, eating, exercising and sleeping at regular times.

Ayurveda places great importance on diet. Most of the Western diet is based on sweet, sour and salty foods, all of which carry too many toxins. At Chopra Addiction and Wellness Center, all food is made fresh daily and we try our best to source local organic fruits and  vegetables The meals incorporate all six tastes:  sweet, sour, salty, pungent, astringent and bitter, which contribute to better overall well-being by allowing the body to absorb most of the nutrients. Our chefs use herbs and spices to enhance our digestive fire.

Ayurveda also places a great importance on human touch. We offer our guests access to Ayurvedic massage using Ayurvedic oils that allow the body to heal, muscles to release tension, and that help eliminate toxins. With the help of our holistic team the guests get an array of healing modalities from acupuncture, to massage therapies, to art therapy, to in-house therapeutic care, all based around ancient teachings of the universe.

Not only are there physical benefits provided by the yoga, meditation and vegetarian diet but in conjunction with twice weekly massages, art therapy and acupuncture sessions, these daily practices help to move emotional and physical toxicity out of the mind and body. As stress and toxicity are released, the body begins to function with maximum effectiveness creating health, vitality and happiness. By learning and gaining experience in these timeless techniques, our guests discover new tools that they can take into their daily lives beyond their stay to support effective and sustained change.