Hypersensitivity explained through Ayurveda

Photo by Thibault Debaene on Unsplash

Hypersensitivity is becoming a concept many people are warming up to in these times. Hypersensitive or highly sensitive people are often more sensitive to stimulation around them like noise and smell.

This is not considered a mental health disorder as per Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM). But the concept was popularised by a Dr. Elaine Aron who has done some research in this area.

From personal experience, I have seen that this is a trait that some people have. It is most common among introverts. From an Ayurvedic perspective, the vata body type seems to exhibit these qualities the most.

Some of the traits of the vata body type is that they are easily stimulated and subtle in nature. This subtle nature seem to cause them to be more tuned to subtle queues in their environments. Specially the feelings, emotions and thought currents of others.

This subtle and sensitive nature is said to be due to the spacious quality of this body type. Specially when the vata quality is very high, the person’s energy seems to be less contained within the body and get intermingled with the energies around them.

This is why Ayurveda strongly recommend this body type to focus their attention on their physical body, nourishing it and taking care of it. This way the energy or prana will come more into the body and the body is able to support it.

Ayurveda also recommend an Ojas building diet to build healthy tissues in the body so that life force or prana is properly supported. Ojas is a substance described in Ayurveda as heavy, rich and nourishing which builds healthy tissues in the body.

Some remedies include eating heavier root vegetables, using grounding spices, eating Ojas rich food like spiced milk, ghee, dates, oats etc, daily warm oil messages, having a strict routine to bring a sense of grounding and doing daily meditation that focuses on the body. Using certain Ayurvedic spices that supports grounding and mental clarity may also be useful.

Things to avoid include high levels of persistent stimulation, lack of routine, light, dry, cold and bitter food and too much analysis/talking unnecessarily.

Its really wonderful that Ayurveda has provided some gentle care tips for this unique trait. Because, burnout is a big problem for all of us and specially for highly sensitive folk.

Sometimes highly sensitive people don’t benefit from a main stream health and diet plan. So it is good to follow a specialized diet at least for a period to get back into balance.

Ayurveda brings a sense of comfort to highly sensitive people as it explains this trait very well. I have found the above remedies to be quite effective.

I feel that introducing some habits from the Ayurvedic system into our existing routine can have some great benefits. But it is always best to first check in with an Ayurvedic practitioner to get personalised consultation and advice.

~~Thanks for Reading~~

I found the below resource from Ayurveda College to be a very helpful: