For hundreds of years, practitioners of Ayurveda have slowed down the process of our body aging using special herbal treatments. According to Ayurveda, several factors contribute to healthy skin and youthfulness. Proper moisture balance (Kapha), effective chemical and hormonal metabolism (Pitta) and efficient blood and nutrient circulation throughout the skin (Vata) are some of the most important factors. By maintaining our energies (doshas) – Vata, Pitta and Kapha – in perfect equilibrium using Ayurvedic remedies, we are able to keep our mind and body at optimum levels.
The term ‘Rasanaya’ is used to describe any herb, food or activity which brings about youthfulness and cures diseases. If taken properly, these treatments can prevent early aging and keep your mind and body young and active. There are several herbs used in Ayurvedic anti-aging treatments:
Amla (Indian Gooseberry, Phyllanthus Emblica): This herb has potent antioxidant properties and is rich in Vitamin C, tannins and gallic acid, which is important for cellular health and maintaining a strong immune system. Amla is able to fight skin dullness and the development of wrinkles. In addition, it prevents premature graying of hairs and stimulates hair growth.
Ginger family: The rhizomes of this family contain a multitude of anti-oxidant and anti-inflammatory ingredients such as gingerol, zingerone and capsaicin which help reduce cellular inflammation for anti-aging skin care benefits.
Gotu Kola (Indian pennywort, Centella asiatica): This medicinal herb keeps all three doshas in balance, nourishes the skin and enhances collagen synthesis, which contributes to its usefulness as an anti-aging remedy.
Frankincense (Boswellia, Bosellia serrata): This has been used in the Ayurvedic system in the management of several inflammatory conditions such as arthritis. Its anti-inflammatory properties make it useful as an anti-aging herbs in Ayurveda.
Draksha (Grapes, Vitis vinifera): Grapes are well known for their potent antioxidant constituents especially procyanidins (found in seeds) and resveratrol (found in grape skins). They reduce our bad cholesterol (LDL), and help prevent fluid retention in our body tissues.
Vashtimadhu (Licorice, Glycyrrhiza glabra): This herb is renowned for its antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. In particular, it has been found to protect our skin from harmful UV rays, thus prevents premature and abnormal aging.
Turmeric (Curcuma longa): These herbs are famous for their rhizomes, which contain curcumin that are bright yellow in colour. With potent anti-oxidant and anti-inflammatory activity, turmeric is a great anti-aging remedy.
Galangal (Galanga, Alpinia officinarum): This plant has various compounds including gingerols, diarylheptanoids and essential oils with vast medicinal properties such as anti-arthritic, UV absorbing and anti-oxidant properties.