Under normal state, the doshas, dhatus and malas remain in certain standard in respect to their quantity, quality and function. However, this situation is not static, and due to several endogenous and exogenous factors i.e. due to unhealthy diet, regimen and because of the non elimination of the toxins, the doshas may become imbalanced and vitiate the structural and functional units of body tissue (dhatus) causing excessive accumulation of body waste resulting in a disease process.
Every disease is related to an imbalance of the doshas. Other coherent factors can be – the disturbance of the biological factors (agnis), the formation and accumulation of undigested material (ama) which causes obstruction of the body channels (shrotorodha), and a disturbed assimilation in the tissues.
Ayurveda recognizes the six stages of disease manifestation. This includes –
- Stage of accumulation of dosha’s or toxins.
- Stage of aggravation or vitiation of doshas.
- Stage of spread of vitiated doshas.
- Stage of localization of vitiated doshas at defective sites.
- Stage of manifestation of the disease.
- Stage of complication.
Among many factors for the accumulation of doshas, digestive and metabolic fire (agnis) of the body is considered the most important factor.
Thirteen types of agnis (digestive and metabolic fire) in body are responsible for digestion and metabolism at different levels. When these digestive and metabolic fires become weak, a number of unwanted unripe byproduct of digestion and metabolism start forming and get accumulated in body at different level from the systemic level to the cellular level.
This unripe byproduct (ama) acts as toxic and antigenic materials. Due to these toxic materials, the body channels (srotas) become impermeable and sluggish. Such a state of body allows the accumulation of doshas which is the first stage of disease manifestation and the subsequent sequence of stages follow as compulsive phenomenon.
Ayurveda advocates that if the disease process is checked in first stage, there will be an instant recovery and if it is allowed to progress into next stage, it becomes some difficult to cure.