‘My Quest For The Ikigai With Ayurveda’

Dr Pallavi POOJARI responds to ThinkWellness360 questionnaire. 

Why and how did you think of becoming a doctor? 

I had a strong, zealous interest in health and medicine, ever since I was a kid. I used to pretend to be a doctor, ‘treat’ and ‘serve’ my neighbours, visit clinics and grab the vantage seat beside doctors. This curiosity, also passion, eventually propelled me to becoming a doctor.

What made you think of, study, and specialise in the system of medicine you now practice?

My grandmother suffered from a joint condition and required steroids to perform her daily chores. When she opted for Ayurveda, her condition improved significantly. She stopped taking steroids, and she was able to attend to her daily tasks with newfound interest. I discovered, to my delight, that Ayurveda prioritises disease prevention and emphasises on treating the patient’s condition holistically, rather than systemically, or symptomatically. As I began to study Ayurveda, my interest in understanding disease expanded, leading me to focus on the Roganidana stream, where diseases are thoroughly researched from their causes to their treatments with a clear, foundational grasp of modern science. This has broadened my perspective on Ayurveda and its timeless tenets.

What has been your personal and professional experience as a doctor?  

I have experienced significant personal transformation owing to the ideas that Ayurveda explains. This has jazzed-up my mental and physical horizons. My entire family, as also my neighbours, have adopted certain basic Ayurveda values that enables them to lead healthy lives in our frenzied world today. At the professional level, it has been a challenge to convey to patients the intricacies of Ayurveda, because most people in our era need ‘quick-fixes.’ However, once they comprehend, they embrace it, and reap the rewards, because Ayurveda treatment outcomes are often incredibly fulfilling for them. This provides me with not just fulfilment, but also happiness.

What unique and special skills you think you have that has made the big difference for your patients? 

I believe that my ability to relate to my patients’ health issues, my empathy for them, and the simple guidance I provide, based on Ayurveda tenets, have significantly improved their lives.

What is your best definition of optimal wellness and why? 

Adapting a positive outlook to life is the key to optimal health. It is a condition in which one could maintain their fitness levels with little to no activity, in conjunction with mindful diet, restful sleep, along with the application of basic life values. This, in their totality, brings tranquillity to our mind, body and spirit. If this isn’t the greatest asset anyone can have for overall, or optimal, wellness, what is?

Your ‘best’ case 

When I helped an anxious couple who had tried numerous therapies, without tangible results. That they could resolve their ‘blues,’ with my treatment plan, was a turning point in their lives, blessed as they were with a healthy and happy baby.

Your ‘not-so-good’ case?            

Despite carefully evaluating the prakriti, disease, and planning one of my patient’s treatment, there was no perceptible benefit for her from her gastrointestinal distress.

What appeals to you the most? 

When patients who sincerely adhere to the Ayurveda principles, explained to them, report a heightened state of health and palpable progress in various aspects of their lives.

What annoys you the most?

People who claim to understand Ayurveda principles, but lack the necessary knowledge, and embrace it without knowing if it is right for them, and just blame the system.

Your favourite book? 

Ikigai and The Secret.

Your favourite joke? 

Those little, ‘goofy’ jokes told by my father and friends.

Your favourite song?

Bollywood numbers of the 1990s, and all Kishore Kumar songs. 

Your favourite movie? 

Dilwale Dulhaniya Le Jayenge, Jab We Met, Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone, Queen, and Kantara.

Your favourite TV, Netflix show? 

Emily in Paris, Game of Thrones, Friends, Grey’s Anatomy, K-Dramas, viz., Boys Over Flowers, The Legend of Blue Sea, and The King.

Your other interests, or hobbies? 

Dancing, going on trips, trying new foods, playing shuttle badminton, hanging out at the beaches, and taking long walks in the lap of nature.

Your goal in life? 

To help spread awareness of Ayurveda principles and treatment to as many people as I can, and to visit as many different, also fascinating, places as I can just as well.

Dr PALLAVI POOJARI, MD [Ayurveda], who embarked on her career as a Consultant at Ayurvedeeyam, Udupi, is committed to delivering the utmost care to her patients, while ensuring they receive the highest standards of service on their journey to health. Her good communication skills enable her to connect deeply with her patients, fostering an environment of trust and understanding. She focuses on food and lifestyle modifications for health-conscious individuals seeking optimal wellness, as she firmly believes that they are just as important as medication and therapy. With a mind-set geared towards continuous improvement, Dr Poojari is always keen to embrace opportunities to learning from others, while believing that personal growth is pivotal not only to her overall development, but also for the community. She lives in Udupi, Karnataka, India.

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