Definition - What does Vamana mean?
Vamana is a Sanskrit word that means “vomiting” or “ejecting from the mouth.” In the traditional Indian medical system of Ayurveda, is one of the toxin-eliminating treatments that together are referred to as panchakarma. Vamana is used to treat asthma, allergies, nasal congestion, psoriasis, chronic indigestion, obesity and skin disorders, among others.
The other panchakarma therapies are rakta moksha (bloodletting), virechana (purgation), basti (enema or colonic) and nasya (nasal irrigation). By removing toxins through one of the panchakarma treatments, the Ayurveda doctor tries to balance the doshas, or energies that control the body's functions.
Yogapedia explains Vamana
Vamana treatment is designed to remove excess kapha dosha, which is associated with the body's fluids. Excess mucus, for example, is a symptom of too much kapha dosha. Vomiting is induced by consuming a medicated drink typically made from an herb called madanaphalam, licorice, honey or calamus root tea and sometimes salt or cardamom. Vomiting is typically induced four to eight times, loosening and eventually expelling the toxins.
In preparation for vamana, the patient is placed on a diet of kapha-aggravating foods such as yogurt, milk and rice, then the kapha is liquified through application of heat to the back and chest.