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Quest for a balanced life.

DUBAI It's a practice as old as the hills, and it's finally made its mark in Dubai.

Ayurveda, or the complete knowledge for a long life, is a holistic approach to life which originated in India over 5,000 years ago.

Dr Chandy George, the ayurvedic consultant at Balance Wellness Club, the city's first 360 degree approach to ayurveda, explains how the practice originated. "The most important thing to understand about ayurveda is that it is not a treatment, nor does it involve any medicinal practices. All ayurveda does is teach you how to live your life based on your body type and your body's needs."

According to Dr George, each human body comes under one of three categories: Vata, Pita and Kapha, each with its unique character traits. "Based on the person's pulse, we analyse their body type and create an all-around approach to healing their issues."

Accordingly, Balance Wellness Club, located in Oasis Centre, offers a holistic healing philosophy that encompasses all aspects of your life: from exercise, diet, counselling, meditation, therapeutic massage and herbal therapies to a number of life-changing solutions, to help bring your mind body and emotions into a perfect alignment with each other.

Each client is offered a course of treatment that is customised to their individual needs and concerns, geared to their body type, genetics, personality, conditions and preferences.

"For example, an initial consultation with a person may reveal that the reason for their sudden weight gain may be something as simple as not eating right for their body type," says Dr George, a doctor of ayurvedic medicine and surgery.

"The first thing we would do for a client is give them a pulse reading and analyse their body type."

Slightly more intricate than it sounds, a pulse reading can turn into an intimate conversation with the doctor about various areas of a person's life and their emotions in relation to it. From an analysis of your physical body, including any imbalances, issues or diseases in the organs, to an evaluation of your emotional situation and lifestyle patterns, a pulse reading can reveal every aspect of your life. Be it bad sleeping habits, eating disorders, emotional trauma, or even physical diseases, the pulse can reveal it all. The knowledge gained from the pulse reading then helps to categorise a client into one of the three body types, namely Vata, Pita and Kapha.

"A person with a higher Vata elemental energy often has a high metabolism," explains Dr George, "but their bodies may not be able to absorb the nutrients of what they eat as well as a person with a Kapha body type. Or a person with a high Pita energy may not be as athletic as a Vata type, but can adapt themselves to most diets and exercise regimes, which a Kapha cannot."

Following this, Dr George decides on an approach that works best for that person.

Assuming an overweight client walks in, looking for ways to lower his/her cholesterol and reduce weight, the body analysis helps to understand that hours in a gym, or on a treadmill, may actually be detrimental to that person's wellbeing. An hour of yoga may prove more beneficial.

Once a course of treatment and exercise has been prescribed, a diet plan is then created, with all the meals available in the in-house restaurant, called Balance Caf. With meals created by Chef Sumit Kumar, who has previously trained under three-Michelin star chef Michel Guerrard, the principles of ayurvedic nutrition are then applied to the patient's diet.

Perhaps most important to the treatment, following the pulse reading, is a series of spa treatments and massages to deal with the imbalances in a person's body. "Patients with lymphatic problems or issues with their immune system would be recommended an hour's session of Abhyangam (ayurvedic body massage) on a regular basis. Those suffering from sleep disorders, stress, strain, anxiety and certain skin diseases, may be recommended the Shirodhara treatment where 1.5 litres of a customised oil is poured over the forehead through a clay pot for 45 minutes. Patients with facial paralysis, which is common in this part of the world, should try the Sirovasty treatment during which customised warm herbal oils are poured into a cap that is tightly fitted on the head for 45 minutes, followed by a gentle massage on the neck and shoulders."

The treatments available at Balance also include more relaxing massages such as Crystal Healing Facials, Ku Nye Tibetian rituals, Moroccan hamams and baths, Thai massages and even nurturing treatments for pregnant women.

"The key lies in understanding that there can be no conveyor-belt style, one-solution fits all way to effective long-lasting meaningful healing and wellbeing," says Dr George. "Which is why Balance brings together the experience of various specialists and experts, each with a proven ability to transform, regenerate and renew a person, inside out."

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Publication:XPRESS (United Arab Emirates)
Date:Aug 25, 2011
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