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SPECIALIZED TREATMENTS - Panchakarama, Punsawan, Shirobasti, Gandusha
 
At Elemental Embrace we also offer a number of specialized treatments similar to those found in Kerala, India, and are conducted, prescribed, and progress followed by our experienced and qualified resident Ayurvedic Vaidyas from India. 
 
Panchakarma treatments are designed detoxification and rejuvenation, and represent the primary healing modality within the Ayurvedic holistic science, and primary purpose of Elemental Embrace.  Other specialised treatments are specific to present condition (eg. pregnancy) and are personally carried out by our Vaidyas after a detailed consultation. 
 
Panchakarama Treatments
 
As Panchakarma is a new concept to the western world, we have put lots of information on this ultimate detoxification in the form of a series of frequently asked questions.
 
 
 
What is Panchakarma?
 
Panchakarma is the primary healing modality within the ancient Ayurvedic science.  It offers balancing rejuvenation for mind, body, and consciousness.  At Elemental Embrace, we call this ‘wellness’, which is achieved through a series of unique, natural, holistic, health giving, deep cleansing therapeutic treatments.  These treatments rid the body of toxins and restore constitutional balance improving health, strengthening immunity, reversing negative effects of stresses which slow the aging process, and enhances self reliance, strength, energy, vitality and mental clarity.
 
Yes, PK does all that!  The effects are remarkable, and representative of the timeless existence and value of this gift of wisdom from the heart and vision of the ancient sages of India.
 
Panchakarma means "five therapies".  Only one or two of the five therapies are recommended and offered to each person on a Panchakarma program, determined by your unique constitution at birth (Prakruti) and current balance (Vikruti).  The therapies work to remove toxins (Ama) from your body through one of the normal channels of elimination.  However, Panchakarma is only effective after preparing the body for the removal of toxins (ama) by Purvakarma.
 
What are the Five Panchakarma Treatments?
 
1.  Vamana
Vamana is the cleansing of the stomach and lungs by therapeutic emesis or vomiting. 
Vamana should not be associated with nausea and sickness as the preparation of herbs taken orally induces the vomiting, and swift in its process.  Vamana is generally recommended to remove excess Kapha which when aggravated results in excess mucus, congestion in the lungs causing repeated attacks of bronchitis, colds, cough and asthma.  By clearing this excess Kapha, Vamana prevents (or reduces the severity) of these problems, and promotes lightness in your chest, clear voice, and a good appetite.
 
2.   Basti
Basti is the cleansing of the large intestine and the most powerful of the 5 karmas.  It can be compared to an oily herbalized / fortified enema where the oil is retained and absorbed through the intestine and distributed through the entire body.  Bastis promote purification and rejuvenation of the colon and large intestine. Generally recommended to balance Vata - the dosha of movement - and thus all physiological activity of the body.  This therefore has effects on all channels, tissues and other doshas of the body.
 
Bastis differ in concept from colonics as colonics are great in removing the toxins brought from the whole body into the large intestine by Purvakarma, but bastis further replenish and nourish all tissues within the body once these toxins have been removed. Bastis are most effective in a series of 3-7 treatments.  They relieve constipation, distention, chronic fever, cols, sexual disorders, kidney stones, heart pain, backache sciatica and joint pain.  Other vata disorders including arthritis, rheumatism, gout, muscle spasms and headaches may also be treatment with bastis.  As we said earlier… the most powerful of the 5 karmas!
 
3. Virechan
Virechan is the cleansing of the small intestines and Pitta related organs (liver & gall bladder) by a herb induced purging process.  Virechan works to remove Ama and balance all metabolic functions, avoiding bile related problems of rashes, skin inflammation, acne, chronic attacks of fever, biliary vomiting, and nausea.
 
4. Nasya
Nasya is the cleansing of the nasal and sinus passages.  We breathe in and get our life force (Prana) through our nostrils.  They are the doorway to the brain which controls our sensory and motor functions.  Clearing the toxins and enabling pure Prana improves all mental activity, memory, concentration and all intellectual activity. Medicated oils through the nostrils prevent headaches, convulsions, loss of memory and reduced sensory perception, and certain eye and ear problems.
 
5. Ratamokshana
Ratamokshana is the cleansing of the toxins present in the blood as absorbed from the gastrointestinal tract.  The main reason for the treatments is to reduce the chance of repeated infections, hypertension, and circulatory conditions by blood.  Reoccurring skin conditions targeted by Ratamokshana include urticaria, rashes, herpes, eczema, acne and chronic itching and hives.  Ratamokshana is also recommended for enlarged liver, spleen and gout.  Bloodletting stimulates the spleen to produce anti toxic substances which help stimulate the immune system, and relieves concentration of the toxins in the blood.
 
This series of five therapies help remove deep-rooted stress and illness which cause toxins in the body while balancing the doshas (energies that govern all biological functions). Panchakarma is ineffective if special detoxification diet is not given along with the treatments.
 
Will I benefit from PK?
 
Ayurveda offers healthcare on the faded part of the wellness continuum in today’s pill popping world.  Panchakarma is a health restorative alternative to this disease curative living.  Many illnesses result from the build up toxins (Ama) in the body that impairs the functioning of its natural defenses, such as the lymph, circulatory and immune systems.
 
PK eliminates toxins and toxic conditions from your body and mind, restores your constitutional balance improving health and wellness, strengthens your immune system and helps you become more resistant to illness.  It reverses the negative effects of stress on your body and mind thereby slowing the aging process.  PK will enhance your strength, energy, vitality and mental clarity and bring about deep relaxation and sense of well-being.
 
What does all this mean?  That when all systems are go, you have the accelerated opportunity to ecstatically awaken on every level of your being, down to the soul level.  A sharp mind, alert senses, stable body, efficient digestion and absorption are framework for enhanced immunity, increased body strength, revitalized nervous system.  Deep restorative sleep, insightful meditation and increased spiritual awareness are signs.
 
If you suffer from and of the following, eliminating the ama from your body can help you be refreshed and enthusiastic from day to day.
 
Emotional or  physical strain
Disease or threat of disease
Lack of energy
Heavy and fatigued
 
How is Panchakarma ‘Health Restorative’?
 
Ama enters into the blood stream and is circulated throughout the body clogging its intricate system of channels, and as it gathers it begins to affect your overall and vital life energy (Prana), your Immunity (Ojas), and your cellular metabolic energy (Tejas), resulting in disease.
 
Chemicals in the food we eat (eg. genetically modified food), any negative habits (smoking, drinking, etc), lifestyle (sleep habits, environmental toxins), incompatible food combinations (eg. milk and fish, melons and grains, yogurt and meat), seasonal changes, repressed emotions, stress factors, etc.  can all act together (or individually) to aggravate or derange the delicate balance of your doshas. This in turn affects your digestive / metabolic / gastric fire (Agni) and produces Ama (toxins).
 
Ama is the basic and internal cause of all disease, and as it can be traced back to imbalanced doshas, herein lies the simplistic beauty of Ayurveda! Appropriate diet, lifestyle, habits and exercise complimented by a periodic cleansing program of panchakarma will prevent the production of Ama and prevent all internally developed disease!
 
How authentic is PK at Elemental Embrace?
 
Panchakarma is at Elemental Embrace is overseen by our resident Ayurvedic Vaidays who have attained their degree in Ayurvedic Medicine and had extensive experience within their own panchakarma clinics in India.  We import all our medicated ghee, treatment oils and herbs for Purvakarma and panchakarma treatments directly from leading pharmacies in India .  With a maximum of 18 guests at any one time, and two resident Ayurvedic doctors on staff, you can be assured that you get the experienced attention, responsive care, and intellectual assurance you require to take you through what can sometimes be an emotionally and physically draining experience.
 
Whether this is your first or semi-annual PK experience, take assurance that it is our unwavering goal to offer an authentic, effective, true and responsible Panchakarma experience.
 
Can I enjoy this detoxifying and healing process?
 
The beauty of PK lies in the gentle, comfortable and relaxing way these treatments clear the path for rejuvenating energies to flow freely, and promote wellness!  Elemental Embrace offers PK from its residential Ayurvedic Vaidyas which gives you the assurance of quality care, and does so in a homely environment you are comfortable with, and offers complimentary spa treatments you are familiar with to accentuate your stay.
 
Panchakarma is custom-tailored to you as an individual and to your current state of health, wellness and constitution. It is a jump start to pro-actively managing and improving your own health and wellness.
 
Your time in the countryside, within the healing environment of Elemental Embrace far from your daily environment is time to recollect and re-heal before you remerge.
 
What is Purvakarma?
 
Purvakarma are the preliminary panchakarma therapies which serve to prepare the body to let go of stored ama. During your time and included within your PK package at Elemental Embrace, a series of Purvakarma treatments are administered.
 
Abhyanga treatments (2 therapists synchronized body massage and oil application) is the first step of Purvakarma. This treatment saturates the body with herbally medicated oils which help loosen ama and move it from deeper tissues into the gastrointestinal tract.  This should be done daily for a minimum of 5 days.
 
From here Panchakarma's main therapies can remove ama from your body. Abhyanga treatments also soften tissue which helps to remove stress and nourish the nervous system.
 
The choice of oils for the abhyanga treatment depends on the particular needs and doshic imbalance of the individual, and decided upon during your consultation with our Ayurvedic Vaidya at the beginning for your stay at Elemental Embrace.
 
Once the massage is completed, swedana (literally "sweat") is performed. The main objective of this therapy is to dilate the channels so that the removal of ama (toxins) can be more easily achieved.  At Elemental Embrace a herbal concoction is added to the steam to assist this process where the toxins are almost liquefied to encourage and enable movement into the gastro intestinal tract.  This sets the toxins up to be removed by the appropriate of the 5 karmas depending on the individuals constitution and disorder, Prakruti and Vikruti respectively.
 
Abhyangas (or similar treatments such as Shirodhara, Thalia Dhara and Udwartana) are prescribed daily during the PK process, and included within your panchakarma package.
 
How long do I need to undergo PK?
 
Panchakarma is most effectively administered (and in some cases only possible) on the 5th day at Elemental Embrace.  Our PK packages below therefore start at 5 days.  As your body is unique and individual, our vaidyas are consistently asking and working by your body indicators during your program, which let them know the ideal time to begin the PK treatments.  This can stretch as long as 28 days for some individuals for a complete cleanse, but the majority of the detoxification can be achieved after 5 – 7 days of Purvakarma.  We therefore recommend a 7 night package.   For more intense cleanses over 7  nights, we will start you off with a 7 night PK package, and let you schedule in your treatments for the remaining period of your stay when you have the added benefit of our Ayurvedic vaidyas recommendations, reports on your progress, a greater PK understanding, and you are more comfortable with your experience at Elemental Embrace.
 
What should I expect during my PK program?
 
On arrival you will have a complete Ayurvedic Consultation with our Ayurvedic Vaidyas who will discuss your medical history, life style details, and your specific needs. The Vaidya will make an assessment, and plan your panchakarma program accordingly to your constitution and needs.
 
PK is very unique in that it is tailored to meet each individuals needs according to their constitution and doshic imbalances.  Our vaidyas will assess your Prakruti (doshic balance at birth) and Vikruit (current doshic balance) and determine which tissues, channels and organs are involved and / or effected by the imbalance, and choose herbs, oils, treatments, supplements and diet to create a package specific to your individuality and compatible with your level of commitment.
 
Daily Purvakarma treatments will be abhyangas or similar which are approximately 75 minute treatments with two therapists administering herbalized oils into your body, followed by a swedana (a herbalized sweat therapy) and a shower.  Furthermore, as Elemental Embrace is the first (and only as far as we know) retreat which offers the best of both eastern and western philosophy, we also recommend the synergies of accentuating your program with treatments including reiki, zen-shiastsu, lymphatic drainage, or even a muscle relaxing body massage.
 
After a couple of days depending on your individuality, you will be advised to do one or two of the panchakarma treatments to facilitate the elimination of the accumulated toxins.
 
You will meet with your panchakarma consultant vaidyas at least once a day to discuss your program and answer any questions you may have.
 
Elemental Embrace a supportive environment with like minded staff and clients, and provides space for true contemplation and self-healing. 
 
The treatments profoundly relax the body and mind and improve the flow of the energy by opening the channels of circulation (srotas) and prepare the body to eliminate excess doshas or toxins on the physical, emotional and spiritual levels.
 
We have daily Yoga and meditation / pranayama classes / sessions, and facilities including reading / games lounge, pool, hot tub, gym, sauna and steam rooms, outdoor activities so you can make the most of this time to yourself.  (We also have a large screen projector for films for those of you who want to take it one step at a time).
 
What will my diet consist of?
 
Your diet will be determined by the vaidyas during your consultation and your level of commitment, although changes may be suggested according to your progress.  Ideally you will accept a special diet of kichadi (a rice and mung daal dish) and special herbal teas. The kichadi is a mono-diet and has a de-toxifying action and is nutritious and easy to digest. You will be requested to avoid cold drinks, cold food, dairy, caffeine and refined sugar during your panchakarma treatments.
 
What activities will I be required to partake in?
 
Special yoga classes will be offered during PK.  Please advise the instructor about your yoga background and of any injuries or limitations you may have.  Specific yoga postures may be recommended for your condition for your time with us and after. You can also make an appointment with one of our yoga therapists to received private instruction on the postures while you are here though for these additional fees may apply.  Pranayama classes help stimulate, regulate and control the vital force that exists in your body.  Participation in these classes is very highly recommended.
 
Is PK also am emotional experience as well as a physical one?
 
While panchakarma is a physical process, it affects the body, mind and spirit. Once you begin your Panchakarma you may begin to notice shifts in your self-awareness, moods etc. it is common for the unresolved issues to come up to surface which can sometimes make one feel upset or uncomfortable, and sometimes de-toxifying can be physically uncomfortable. It is important you observe these feelings and let the vaidyas know of them so that they can assist this process.  Some of the emotions you may experience may be of sadness, grief, anger, elation, joy, loneliness and or other. You may become aware of issues in your life that had been buried or unresolved. Panchakarma may catalyze and also resolve and release these emotions. The more aware you are of the unresolved issues in your life the more effective the treatments can be. Meditation yoga and pranayama can be effective ways to help release these issues from the mind and body.
 
Can I return to my regular diet after PK?
 
The Vaidya will discuss the diet for your body type, condition and tendencies and offer suggestions to implement these changes into your daily routine at home.
 
Do try and continue to follow the advice (which now having felt better you will perhaps gladly do so). It may be discouraging to realize that some of the food in your home and many of your favorite dishes may be on the list of food to avoid. We find that moderation is a virtue when changing ones diet. If you can stay on the recommended diet 60 to 70 % for a longer time this is much better than flowing the diet 100% for a very short time.
 
Are there any contraindications to PK treatment?
 
Please note that the panchakarma is contraindicated for women during their menses and should time their package accordingly. (Contact us for more information and specific concerns).
 
There are certain medical conditions for which Panchakarma is contraindicated or modified.  It is therefore important for you to be completely honest when filling out the medical history form. Some of the contraindications are:-
 
Pregnancy
Menses
Lactation
Lymph -Sarcoma
Cancer of the lungs or testicles
Melanoma
Angina pectoris
HIV or AIDS
Emaciation
Extreme obesity
Hypertension
Congestive heart failure
Any active viral disease
 
What shall I bring with me?
 
Panchakarma is best done in a reflective state of mind. We suggest bringing a journal and books to read that are conducive to healing. We advice you avoid TV and loud music.
 
Generally people find that they need to rest a great deal during PK and it is important to do so.
 
Bring a scarf or cap to wear so you can keep the oil in your hair, but not your favorite one as it will get very oily!  You may remain in your robe or whatever is most comfortable to you for most of the day, and need not get formal at any time, not even dinner.
 
You will also be offered disposable undergarments for the medicated oil Purvakarma treatments, as they may stain fabrics.
 
You may not want to forget your swimming suit for the pool, hot tub, steam room and sauna, and some loose clothing for yoga and Thai massage.
 
How do I sign up?
 
Please contact us with your preferred dates, and we will schedule in your treatments based on the following 5 and 7 night packages.  If you are staying for more than 7 nights, we will start you off with a 7 night package, and let you schedule in your treatments for the remaining period of your stay when you have the added benefit of our Ayurvedic vaidyas recommendations, reports on your progress, and your comfort level.
 
Congratulations on your commitment to wellness!  We will do all that we can to make it happen as effective and enjoyable as possible.
 
The "Custom Ayurvedic Packages" page will show our suggested 5 and 7 night packages which provide a greater understanding of the purvakarma treatments and package price of our recommended panchakarma programs. 

 

Punsawan - Pregnacy Treatments:
Pre Pregnacy
Following Consultation, you will be advised on how to prepare your body to house your precious little one! Contact us so we can help you put a series of treatments together for you, beginning with an Ayurvedic consultation.

During Pregnancy
Enjoy a special, full body massage, mum, and release that muscular tension in your neck, shoulders and lower back and baby will love it too!!! The type and process of the massage may differ depending on how far you are into  pregnancy. 

Post Pregnacy
Specialized massage techniques are used to relax and normalize your body, helping to relieve the anxiety, and tense muscles. You sure deserve to feel special!!


 
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