Third Dhatu – Mamsa Dhatu (Muscle tissue)
The muscular system accounts for nearly half of the body weight. Muscles are derived from Earth and Water elements, both which are heavy, and from the Fire element that accounts for muscle action. Muscles give shape to the body, and turns skill into action, which is art. For example, handwriting, drawing, dancing, walking on a rope, climbing a mountain, martial arts, and kite boarding, all need coordination of the muscles. Coordination involves groups of muscles working together harmoniously in order to bring skillful action. Therefore, Mamsa Dhatu has the capacity to create coordination. Mamsa Dhatu also gives power, ambition, confidence, determination and courage. Along with the bones, it gives support to the body. Muscles provide protection by covering delicate organs, bones, joints, nerves and blood vessels. Mamsa Dhatu is responsible for movement of bodily fluids – urine, sweat, lymph and blood. Muscles are responsible for the appearance of the body. A well-developed muscle creates a handsome body. The facial muscles express emotions; joy, anger, fear. Muscle tissue resists gravity so levitation is a function of Mamsa Dhatu.One primary function of Mamsa is holding. This function is needed also for holding a stable mind, for meditation, holding on when the going gets tuff, holding on when your world is shaking.
When Mamsa Dhatu is optimal, it is called Mamsa Sara. Mamsa Sara is present when Mamsa Dhatu is completely developed, with all its superfine qualities. Such a person has well developed cheeks, neck, shoulders, and a broad chest, the biceps and triceps appear healthy. The calf muscles and the muscles of the buttocks are well shaped. Mamsa Sara means a person is full of power, strength, stamina, courage, confidence, determination, love, compassion and forgiveness. A person with Mamsa Sara makes money and has a strong sex drive. According to Ayurveda, longevity is also due to strong, healthy muscles.
Attributes: Gross, Heavy, Rough, Hard, Elastic, Firm, Dense, and Bulky.
Action: strengthen, covers
Superior by product: the subcutaneous tissue of the skin, muscle fat
Inferior by products: nasal crust, earwax, sebaceous secretions, tartar on the teeth.
Decreased Mamsa Dhatu – Mamsa Kshaya
When Mamsa Dhatu is decreased, it will cause weak muscles, sunken cheeks, temples and sunken eyes. The neck becomes thin and the bones are exposed, the ribs and vertebra become visible, and the person has an emaciated appearance.
Causes of Mamsa Kshaya disorders:
- Insufficient protein consumption
- Under eating
- Insufficient exercise
- Insufficient rest or sleep
- Physical trauma, such as an accident
- Emotional stress
Increased Mamsa Dhatu – Mamsa Vruddhi
In Mamsa Vruddhi, when Mamsa is increased by quantity but reduced by quality, there may be enlarged or stiff muscles, enlarged lip, expanded nose, potbelly abdomen, enlarged tongue, muscle hypertrophy due to water retention, and herniation. The body will lose its proportion. There may be formation of muscle tumors, called myomas or fibromas.
Causes of Mamsa Vruddhi disorders:
- Excess protein consumption
- Heavy meats and dairy products
- Over eating
- Wet substances, such as yogurt, cheese, cucumber, watermelon, salt
- Incompatible food combining
- Excessive exercise, beyond one’s capacity
- Day time sleeping
- Liver disorders