Two Brains

As discussed in our previous blogs, Agni (your digestive fire) controls more than just your physical digestion, it also plays a pivotal role in the way you deal with, or digest your emotions.

We have all heard the phrase ” That person is totally constipated” when referring to somebody who is stuck up, tense and short tempered. They certainly aren’t talking about a persons bowel movements, but are instead referring to their temperament and emotional state of being.

It has now been conclusively proven that the state of one’s digestive health directly affects one’s state of mind. Certified scientific research has shown that ninety-five (95%) percent of your body’s serotonin is housed and found in your gut, so your gut literally is your second brain!

Your gut or “second brain” actually contains one hundred million neurons, which is far more than you have in your peripheral nervous system or even your spinal cord, so it stands to reason that digestive health would have a significant impact on your mental health.

A healthily maintained gut equates to a healthy, balanced mind. When your digestive system is functioning perfectly, you experience mental clarity, patience, confidence, joy and enthusiasm and a zest for life.

However, when you have a digestive system that is out of balance, you may suffer from feelings of indecisiveness, depression, confusion, impatience, annoyance, anxiety, social withdrawal or physical sickness or disease, depending on your doshic makeup and constitution.

Well before it was established by conventional science, Ayurvedic science knew that digestion plays a distinct control factor in mental health. Modern research has repeatedly confirmed this and has also linked poor digestion to mental disorders such as hyperactivity, attention deficit syndrome and even autism. Your agni has numerous emotional functions attached to it, in Ayurveda, they are listed as such :

  • Dhariyam: stability, endurance, patience, and mental agility and balance
  • Shauryam: courage, bravery and confidence
  • Harshna: Laughter, joyfulness, good cheer and happiness
  • Buddhikara: Mental reasoning, discrimination and logical thought
  • Raga: A colourful personality, enthusiasm, affection and general interest in life
  • Medhakara: Inter-cellular communication and intelligence.

However, when ones Agni is disturbed or imbalanced, one can experience the exact opposite of all the emotional functions listed above:

  • Ashauryam: Vata related: Anxiety, Fear,
  • Aharshna: Kapha related: Sadness, depression,
  • Adhirata: Pitta related: Sloppiness or impatience.
  • Medhahara: Which can be related to any of the Dosha’s: a lack of inter-cellular communication, which causes a variety of illness, including cancer
  • Buddhihara: Vata related: Indecisiveness
  • Vishada: Vata related: Absent-mindedness, confusion and inconsistency
  • Viraga: Kapha related: Depression or withdrawal