Ayuh and Veda literally meaning "Science of Life"
Ayurveda teaches that the entire natural world is created by five elements: Space, air, fire, water, and earth. These five elements give rise to three life forces, called doshas: Vata Dosha (wind and space), Pitta Dosha (fire and water) and Kapha Dosha (earth and water). Each one of us has their own special ratio of Vata, Pitta, and Kapha. This is called prakruti: Our inborn constitution.
Our individual prakuti permeates every cell in our body and orchestrates movement, breathing, nerve impulses, enzymatic reactions, catabolism, anabolism, and structure. It also controls our thought processes, emotions, reactions to external stimuli and our immunity.
Ayurveda is the traditional Indian healing system that helps us balance our life forces to bring us back to our innate, natural state of health and well-being.
Modalities include: Herbal Therapies, Massage with Medicinal Oils, Detoxification and Cleansing Regimens, Dietary Guidelines, Sleep Recommendations, Meditation Practices, Seasonal Routines and Exercise Recommendations.
OsteopathyOsteopathic medicine was founded in the late 1800s in Kirksville, Missouri, by Andrew Taylor Still, MD. Through a series of tragic deaths in his family, he found that the standard medical practices of his time were often more harmful than beneficial. Devoting thirty years of his life to the study of the human body, he discovered alternative approaches to disease management. His system was based on the idea that the body possessed an innate ability to repair itself.
Osteopathic doctors view the patient as a whole person, and not just a bundle of body parts and biochemical reactions. Dr. Still’s techniques are non-invasive manual treatments that address altered musculoskeletal bio-mechanics, as well as restrictions in the circulatory, lymphatic and nervous systems. OMT seeks to balance the organ systems and promote overall health by easing these restrictions and restoring mobility, decreasing inflammation and reducing pain. This return to balance encourages the body to heal itself. Techniques used by Osteopathic physicians include soft-tissue stretching, gentle manipulation of joints, and encouraging lymphatic mobilization.
- Irritable Bowel Syndrome
- Blood Sugar Management
- Muscle aches, pains, strains
- Tension Headaches
- Temporomandibular Joint Disease (TMJ)
- Weight Loss
- Premenstrual Issues
- Menopause Issues
- Low Breast Milk Supply
- Whiplash Injuries, Car Accidents
- Post-concussion Symptoms
Initial ConsultationOur initial consultation, whether it’s a house call in the comfort of your own home or in my office, is a time for me to listen to you and learn about you and your health.
Together, we create a comprehensive assessment of your health: I ask you about past and current symptoms and illnesses, infections, surgeries, prescription medications, supplements and alternative treatments, and your family history of medical problems. We explore your life stressors, work conditions, habits and lifestyle choices. I examine important elements such as your vital signs, your skin, pulse, tongue, your heart and lungs. In other words, I assess your physical structure from Allopathic (Western), Ayurvedic, and Osteopathic perspectives.
In the end, I determine your Ayurvedic constitution—your prakruti. Based on this assessment, I make recommendations on how we can help your body get back to its natural, balanced state of health and well-being. These recommendations may include lifestyle and diet changes, herbal therapies, Osteopathic Manipulative Treatment (OMT), meditation and yoga practices, seasonal routines and exercise.
Before we say goodbye, we discuss if and when a follow-up appointment is needed and I help you set up access to your electronic patient portal profile through which you and I can securely communicate about your health.
Other Services: Ayurvedic Cooking and -Meal Planning, Yoga- and Meditation Instruction, Ayurvedic Workshops & Pranayama.
Dr. Aparna Dandekar
Board-Certified Family Physician
Ayurveda Wellness Practitioner
Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine
My heritageI was born to parents who emigrated from India and settled in the United States in the 1960s. Forward-thinking and worldly in their outlook, they made it a point to infuse the ancient teachings of Vedanta, to be applicable to modern life. Raised in this open-minded, bicultural household, I was able to appreciate the values of both East and West and identify equally with both.
My careerBefore I started focusing all of my energy on my patients at Three Rivers Ayurveda in 2013, I worked as a physician at Kaiser Permanente from 2005 to 2013. I have been seeing patients at the Tang Center for Student Health at the University of California in Berkeley since 2008, and I serve as a regular guest lecturer at the San Diego College of Ayurveda, where I received my training as an Ayurveda Wellness Practitioner.
My familyIn addition to being a healer, I love being the mother to my two children and a wife to my husband Abhay, who is a pediatrician. The four of us live in the East Bay Area. As a family, we love the outdoors. Now that the kids are older we enjoy riding our bikes, camping and river-rafting or just working in the yard together. Sometimes, just staying home, watching the kids perform quirky impressions and laughing till our sides ache is the best way to spend an evening at our house.
- Adjunct Assistant Professor of Family Medicine–Touro University College of Osteopathic Medicine, Vallejo, 2014-present
- Guest Lecturer, San Diego College of Ayurveda, 2013-present
- National Ayurvedic Medical Association (NAMA) Professional Member 2014-present
- Diplomate, American Board of Family Medicine 2007
- Family Medicine Residency–University of Southern California, Los Angeles County Medical Center, 2005
- Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine–Western University of Health Sciences at Pomona, 2002
- Bachelor of Science, Zoology–University of Washington, 1992-1996
- Bachelor of Arts, Sanskrit–University of Washington, 1992-1996
PhilosophyMy philosophy is simple: Nature knows best. My inherent faith in the self-regulating wisdom of nature has been strengthened by my experience as an Ayurveda practitioner and Osteopathic physician. At the same time, my work as an Allopathic physician has given me the utmost respect for modern science and technology.
I find that the combination of these two aspects is a comprehensive and thorough approach to health and a valuable gift to my patients: Eastern and Western, traditional and modern, ancient wisdom and the knowledge of cutting-edge science and technology.
GoalMy goal is to demystify Ayurveda and present it to you as it has existed throughout the ages: An intuitive, practical, no-nonsense way to find balance. I look forward to working with you to create positive and lasting changes in your health, using techniques that are easily incorporated into your daily life.
Three Sacred RiversThe 'Triveni Sangam' is the confluence of the three most sacred rivers in India: the Ganga, Yamuna, and Saraswati. Since ancient times, millions have sought to wash away their physical, mental and spiritual suffering by bathing in the waters at this venerated nexus. The powerful allure of the sangam serves as a constant reminder that it is fundamentally human to seek health on multiple levels; and this search is one of the inspirations behind the name, Three Rivers.
The number 3 has always been a number of great significance, both from a natural/historical perspective, as well as a human/spiritual one. By the sages of Vedic times down to Pythagoras, 3 was considered the noblest of all numbers, being the only digit to equal the sum of all the numbers before it. Vedic sound theory states that all universal sound comes from and eventually merges back into three letters, A, U, and M, which put together create the sound AUM (the famous syllable ‘Om’). In nature, the three primary colors allow us to form infinite chromatic combinations. Finally, spiritual traditions spanning millennia have honored Three as the basis of a holy trinity. The number three is the foundation of the universal concept that “the many become the whole.”
Ayurveda teaches that nature is governed by the complex interplay of three doshas (energetics), namely, Vata, Pitta, and Kapha, and three gunas (qualities) – Sattva, Rajas and Tamas. Vedanta teaches that karma, which drives human destiny, is of three varieties. The creative power of this mystical number was very meaningful to the ancients, and even today, the saying goes that, “good things come in threes.”