The word “ayurveda” is Sanskrit: आयुर्वेद, Āyurveda, meaning knowledge of life and longevity.
The central theoretical ideas of Ayurveda developed in the mid-first millennium BCE, and show parallels with Sāṅkhya and Vaiśeṣika philosophies, as well as with Buddhism and Jainism. Balance is emphasised, and suppressing natural urges is considered unhealthy and claimed to lead to illness. For example, to suppress sneezing is said to potentially give rise to shoulder pain. However, people are also cautioned to stay within the limits of reasonable balance and measure when following nature’s urges. For example, emphasis is placed on moderation of food intake and sleep.