Definition - What does Meda Dhatu mean?
According to Ayurveda, the Sarira (body), Manas (mind), and Prana (life force) are all supported by tissues known as dhatu. Meda Dhatu refers to the fatty tissues of the body, in addition to their waste products, such as sebum (skin oil) and sweat. These tissues are found in the buttocks, abdomen, omentum and bone, and are associated with cholesterol and adipose tissue.
Meda Dhatu is primarily made up of the water element, but also incorporates earth. Water signifies the nourishing aspect of Meda Dhatu, whilst earth reveals its role in grounding and stabilizing the body and mind. However, Meda Dhatu can have a negative reaction with the other elements, suppressing fire, slowing the movement of air and reducing the inspiration of ether.
Yogapedia explains Meda Dhatu
Ayurveda identifies seven dhatu or tissues within the human body: rasa dhatu (plasma), rakta dhatu (blood), mamsa dhatu (muscle), meda dhatu (fat), asthi dhatu (bone), majja dhatu (nervous tissue), and shukra dhatu (male reproductive tissue) or artava dhatu (female reproductive tissue).
Meda Dhatu is responsible for lubrication, storing energy and providing nourishment, and these functions are increased by the intake of oily substances. Too much Meda Dhatu may cause obesity, diabetes, hypercholesterolemia, high cholesterol, excessive thirst or fatty tumours. Not enough Meda Dhatu can lead to dry skin, weak muscles and emotional disturbances.
In order to find a healthy balance of Meda Dhatu, adequate earth and water must be not only consumed via diet, but properly digested and transformed into body fat. It is therefore important to maintain a healthy digestive fire. Tumeric, Triphala and Black Pepper are useful herbs for balancing Meda Dhatu.