Ayurveda explains 8 kinds of physical deformities. It is said that people with these deformities are difficult to treat and such people are prone to wide variety of diseases.
Ayurveda is the first health science to have discussed the number and dimensions of the body parts and calculations of quantity of tissues and structures in sankhya and pramana shaareera.
Read – Sankhya Shaareera: Count Of Body Parts As Per Ayurveda
These 8 deformities – Asgta Nindita Purusha
Ati Deergha – excessive tallness
Ati Krusha – dwarf
Ati Sthula – excessively obese
Ati Krusha – excessively underweight
Ati Loma – excess body hair
Aloma – absence of body hairs
Ati Gaura – extremely fair
Ati Krushna – extremely dark skin complexion (No discrimination intended).
Ati deergha – Very Tall
Person is excessively tall. This can be compared to gigantism of pituitary origin. In gigantism, most features and signs are related to bones, like very large hands and feet, long and thick bones, thick toes and fingers. Research – The studies have shown that the taller people are more prone to develop cancer. It confirms that due to more number of cells in tall people, there is more cell division that makes more likely to develop cancer.
Ati Hriswa – Dwarfism
person is extremely short. This can be compared to dwarfism. This condition also affects bone
We can see involvement of vata in both gigantism and dwarfism since vata operates from bones. Bones are chief seats of vata. Dwarfism is often genetic condition. If vata affects embryo, it can cause disproportionate growth of bones which may continue after birth. Vata can also affect bone formation process after birth.
Kapha is chief dosha involved in growth and maturation of infant into child and child into adolescent. Kapha is active during growth phase. When normal kapha properly governs growth and development, bones, tissues and organs are proportionally formed. When there is an imbalance between kapha and vata, bones may become long or short and lead to gigantism or dwarfism. Read – Understand Kapha Dosha By Its Functions
Five elements of nature are involved in formation and maturation of body parts in growing fetus. Akasha i.e. space element produces space for development of all structures . Vata i.e. air element is involved in cell division and differentiation. When both these elements become hyperactive in fetus, it results in gigantism and when they influence in deficit way, dwarfism occurs. Same mechanism may happen after birth when there is imbalance of vata and akasha elements mutually and in relationship with kapha. Same vata and akasha elements form vata dosha. Read – Diseases Due To Pathological Bone Tissue – Asthi Pradoshaja Rogas
Ati sthula – Obese
person is excessively fat. may be caused due to many causes. Closest correlation to atisthula is Frohlich’s syndrome. It is also called as adiposogenital dystrophy. It is a rare childhood metabolic disorder. It is characterised by – obesity, growth retardation, and hypogonadism due to hypothalamic-pituitary disorder. Retarded growth of genitals, increased appetite and depressed secretion of gonadotropin are also found. Here too we can see imbalance of vata and kapha.
This condition is related to fat and fat is a kapha group tissue. Therefore kapha imbalance is a must. Kapha body type people have a natural tendency to become obese when kapha gets vitiated. Atisthula can be compared to obesity or hypothyroidism. Read – Effective Obesity Treatment, Remedies And Ayurveda Tips
Ati krusha – Lean
person is very thin. Thinning can be caused due to many causes including malnutrition and starvation. This condition can be closely correlated to Pituitary Cachexia. Cachexia means weakness and wasting of body. It is a wasting syndrome wherein there is loss of weight, muscle atrophy, fatigue, weakness and significant loss of appetite when person is not attempting to lose weight.
Read – Healthy Tips To Put On Weight, To Become Fat Naturally
It is also called Simmond’s Disease. It is a form of hypopituitarism that leads to atrophy of viscera, including heart, liver, spleen, kidneys, thyroids, adrenals and gonads. It results in emaciation and death if left untreated. Karshya is pathological manifestation of increased vata. When vitiated vata is not controlled it is said to deplete all tissues in body and cause cachexia and thinning. Converse is also true.
Ati loma – Excessive body hairs
person has too much of body hairs. This can be closely compared to hirsutism. It usually occurs due to excessive production of male hormones called androgens. It can be inherited and also occur as a part of other pathological conditions. Hairs occur in both men and women on parts of body where hairs are normally absent or minimal, such as chin, chest or face. Since it is excess of male hormones, it can be correlated to excessive shukra dhatu. Shukra, in true sense is semen or sperms, in-depth meaning of this term can be extended to cover male sex hormones. Since semen and male sex hormones are tissue of kapha group, there would be over-expression of kapha dosha in these conditions. When there is excessive expression of kapha, there is deficit expression of vata. When vata is less, tissue in which it resides i.e. bone tissue increases. Body hairs are excreta of bone tissue. When bone tissue increases, body hairs also increase.
Read – Poly-cystic Ovarian Syndrome, Obesity And Insulin Resistance – Natural Management
Aloma – no body hairs
person has very less body hairs. This condition can be compared to eunuchoidism. It is an abnormal condition in males characterized by lack of fully developed reproductive organs and development of certain female sex characteristics. High voice and lack of facial and body hair resulting from absence of normal production of male sex hormones are evident. Testes are present but fail to function. This condition occurs due to deficiency or absence of shukra dhatu i.e. semen and male hormones. Semen and male hormones are tissues belonging to kapha group. Kapha is present in semen. Kapha decrease leads to less shukra. This also causes vata increase, consequentially leading to decrease in bone tissue formation. When bone tissue is in less proportion, its excreta i.e. body hairs are also in less proportions or absent. Read – Principles Of Treatment For Hair Fall Associated PCOS
Ati Krishna – Very dark complexion
person has too dark complexion. This condition can be compared to hyper-pigmentation of Addison’s disease. It is known as primary adrenal insufficiency and hypo-cortisolism. Here adrenal glands do not produce enough steroid hormones. Among many symptoms, hyper pigmentation i.e. darkening of skin is an important one which can be included in this category. Other symptoms include – extreme fatigue, weight loss, decreased appetite, low blood pressure, fainting, low blood sugar, salt craving and abdominal pain. All these symptoms point towards vata increase. Karshya i.e. blackish discoloration of body is one of symptoms of vata vitiation.
Ati gowra – Very light complexion
person has too fair complexion. This condition can be closely compared to myxoedema. Myxedema is a condition which occurs due to not properly treating hypothyroidism. Along with other symptoms there is thickening of skin due to collection of mucopolysaccharides and water beneath skin. It gives a shining appearance to skin. Skin looks dry and edematous but doesn’t pit when pressed. This condition may not match directly with ati gowra. Albinism is one condition which is caused due to deficiency of melanin pigment in body which satisfies criteria of ati gowra but since we are discussing endocrine link albinism needs to be ruled out because there is no hormones related to this condition. In myxedema, if we take shine component of swollen skin, it can be compared to ati gowra, though myxedema doesn’t match exactly with ati gowra. But myxedema satisfies endocrine link since it is related to hypothyroidism.
When other symptoms like feeling of cold etc are taken into consideration, atigowra vis-à-vis myxedema can be considered as a high kapha condition. Ati gowra or shwaitya is a symptom of kapha vitiation.
Read – Vitiligo: Ayurvedic Treatment, Medicines, Herbs, Remedies
Each of above said conditions explained in nindita purushas can occur due to various causes either as primary or secondary manifestation. But here only those pathological conditions which have endocrine and hormonal relations in their manifestation have compared with dosha concept. Example, obesity can be caused due to several reasons and ati sthoulya can be just ‘obesity’ or ‘abnormal increase in weight’. But here it is compared to Frohlich’s syndrome because it has hormonal relationship. Ati Krishna can be just ‘hyper pigmentation’. Here it is compared to hyper-pigmentation of Addison’s disease because an endocrine gland and its hormones are related with this condition.