The Sapta (seven) Dhatus (tissues) elements form the pillars of the body that form the means of nourishment and growth while providing support to the body as well as the mind.
Rakta (blood) Dhatu – Regarded as the basic of life, it is analogous to the circulating blood cells. It not only nourishes the body tissues, but provides physical strength and colour to the body.
Masma Dhatu – The muscle tissue, its main function is to provide physical strength and support for the meda dhatu.
Meda (fat) Dhatu – Consists of adipose tissue providing support to ashti dhatu. It also lubricates the body.
Ashti Dhatu – Comprising of bone tissues, including cartilages, its main function is to give support to the majja dhatu and provide support to the masma dhatu.
Majja Dhatu – Denoting the yellow and red bone marrow tissue, its main function is to fill up the ashti and to oleate the body.
Shukra Dhatu – The main aim of this reproductive tissue is to help reproduction and strengthen the body.
Since the dhatus support and derive energy from each other, affecting one can influence others. For instance, interference in the manufacture of the plasma affects the quality of the blood, which in turn effects the muscle. Each tissue type has its own agni, which determines metabolic changes in the tissues. And forms by-products, which are either used in the body or excreted. Menstural periods for example are a by-product of rasa. The tissues are also governed by the three doshas, and any imbalance in them also causes imbalances in dhatus. Heavy periods therefore can also be caused by the effects of the excess of Kapha on plasma.