According to the 2007 National Health Interview Survey, more than 200,000 U.S. adults had used Ayurvedic medicine in the previous year.

Ayurveda considers sickness an imbalance in the body that can be resolved by restoring equilibrium rather than treating symptoms. So instead of popping pills to treat indigestion, the Ayurvedic approach would correct the lifestyle, diet and environmental factors responsible for turning mealtime into gastric distress.

“It’s not a one-size-fits-all discipline, says Denise O’Dunn, a certified Ayurvedic practitioner and yoga instructor. “The majority of people who come [to my practice] have daily quality of life challenges. They know something isn’t right.”

Problems can include insomnia, headaches and digestive issues. Some clients have tried traditional medical approaches to chronic conditions without much success. Others are in good health but want to incorporate the ancient practices into their healthy lifestyle.

–St. Petersburg Times, St. Petersburg, Florida, May 19