Simple Ways To Stay Cool This Summer

 

Simple Ways To Stay Cool This Summer
Summer is nearly here and for most, the arrival of this season marks the start of sweltering-hot weather. Ayurveda describes the summer heat as being “pitta-aggravating” which implies provoking the fire element within. It’s intuitive that the basic goal during summer is to stay cool so here are a couple ways to help beat the summer heat from an ayurvedic perspective.

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Pearl Of Wisdom:
During the hot summer season, you may have noticed that your digestion is not as strong. That being the case you may want to consider ghee to help improve digestion and to also help cool the body. “Ghee is a pitta pacifying substance that is useful in summer and bitter ghee (called tikta ghrita) is especially cooling, as it contains a number of bitter herbs, including neem. Ayurvedic literature says that taking 1/2 teaspoon of bitter ghee on an empty stomach on summer mornings will improve digestive functions and control pitta dosha.”
– Dr. Vasant Lad, B.A.M.S.

Ayurvedic Secrets To Stay Cool In The Summer - Cure Joy

5 Simply Ways To Stay Cool This Summer
1. Drink cooling herbal teas such as cumin, coriander, and fennel tea.
2. Eat cooling and more easily digestible meals such as kitchari and salads.
3. Consider applying cooling essential oils to the body, such as sandalwood and khus.
4. At bedtime, consider applying coconut oil to your scalp and feet
5. Perform a daily oil massage with cooling oils such as sunflower or coconut oil

Essential Oils


 

 

 

 

Foods To Favor ...

The foods to favor during summer consist of bitter, astringent, healthy sweet, light and easily digestible foods. One should especially enjoy the great variety of colors of vegetables and fruits such as broccoli, brussel sprouts, kale, cauliflower, turnips, purple potatoes, karela (bitter gourd), cabbage, dandelion, burdock, lettuce, neem, green beans, peas, cucumber, zucchini, yellow squash, apples, pears, sweet berries, ripe mango, peach and watermelon. Prepare the foods with spices such as fennel, coriander, cardamom, cilantro, and coconut. When cooking beets, carrots, tomatoes, pumpkin, okra, spinach, and chard, make sure to include a lot of cooling foods such as coconut, cucumber and cilantro in the menu – especially when living in places where the summer heat is intense.

It’s Best To Avoid ...
During this time, it is best to avoid all red meats, garlic, onion, and tomato sauce, as well as pungent and excessively sour and salty tastes. The mind easily gets aggravated by the heat and the risk of imbalanced Pitta emotions, such as anger, irritation and criticism, increases. Thus, practicing more pranayama (breathing exercises) and meditating in the moonlight is recommended.

According to the teachings of Ayurveda, every aspect of our lives contributes to our overall health with seasonal changes being of great significance. The summer heat is reflective of the fiery element of pitta giving all the more reason to discover some delectable yummy and cooling dishes to help stay cool this summer. Also, please note that in tropical climate, the seasons are different; due to the high temperature and humidity, Pitta  and Kapha  prevail. Thus, it is recommended to favor cooling, bitter, astringent, healthy sweet taste such as grains and milk and lighter foods. Refer to the diets outlined during spring and summer.

 

~CUCUMBER RAITA~

Often a good meal for lunch on a hot summer day is basmati rice and mung dal kitchari. However, to bring about flavor you may also want to consider cucumber raita to help improve digestion and even help to cool down many spicy dishes.

Ingredients:
·        1 small cucumber skinned and grated
·        1 teaspoon of ground fennel seeds dry roasted
·        ½ cup of plain yogurt
·        ¼ teaspoon of salt
·        ¼ teaspoon of pepper
·        4-5 chopped mint leaves
* Simply mix all together and enjoy!

 

Want To Stay Cool & Well Hydrated?

It’s also very important to stay well hydrated especially during the hot summer days. Therefore, consider sipping on this drink throughout the day to keep the body hydrated and cool.
·        1 teaspoon of fresh lime juice
·        Pinch of salt
·        1 tablespoon of raw sugar
·        2.5  cups of water
* Mix all together and sip away!

How About Cilantro Chutney?
This helps to cool down even the most spiciest of dishes.
·        2 Apples
·        1 cup of fresh cilantro
·        ¼ tsp salt
·        Juice of 2 lemons

Simply peel and core apples and place in food processor with cilantro. Add lemon and salt according to taste. Can also substitute pears for apples and limes for lemons if desired.

 

Simple Tips To Stay Cool This Summer:

Lastly, here are a few simple tips in helping reduce the excess heat during this summer:
·        Consuming a pitta pacifying diet
·        Drinking cooling herbal teas such as mint, cumin coriander and fennel tea
·        Cooling drinks and meals such as cucumber raita, lime, cilantro chutneys & aloe vera juice
·        Favoring foods with sweet, astringent and bitter tastes
·        Using certain essential oils to reduce body heat such as sandalwood, rose and khus
·        Applying coconut oil to the soles of the feet and the scalp before bed
·        Reducing alcohol in particular whiskey brandy or rum and red wine (pittagenic)
·        If there's susceptibility to skin conditions (rash, hives, urticaria) then reduce time in the sun
·        Amalaki is a wonderful pitta pacifying herb that can help to reduce internal heat

There are other simple recommendations to also assist in reducing pitta during summer by wearing hats or sunglasses as well as light cotton clothing. I hope you enjoyed these simple yet essential tips for staying cool during these hot summer days.

Organic Ayurvedic Cleanse Kit

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

References:
1.      Yarema, T., & Rhoda, D. (2006). Eat-taste-heal: An Ayurvedic guidebook and cookbook for modern living.
2.      Dugliss, P. (2010). Enlightened Nutrition (1st ed., Vol. 1). Santa Barbara, California: MCD century publications, LLc.
3.      Lad, U., & Lad, V. (1997). Ayurvedic cooking for self-healing (2nd ed.). Albuquerque, N.M.: Ayurvedic Press.
4.      Lad, V. (1998). The complete book of Ayurvedic home remedies. New York: Harmony Books.
5.      Hospodar, M. (1999). Heaven’s banquet: Vegetarian cooking for lifelong health the ayurveda way. New York, N.Y., U.S.A.: Dutton.


The 5 Step Ayurveda Cleanse

 

The 5 Step Ayurveda  Cleanse 
Cleansing is perhaps the easiest, least expensive, and most important element of maintaining health. Health implies balance and research shows that the impact of good health on the quality of life is far-reaching, regardless of your age or sex. However, when impurities and toxins accumulate within the cells, the body as a whole suffers. Although, the health industry is a ‘disease and sickness’ industry - Ayurveda, on the other hand, is more than a mere system of treating illness. Instead, Ayurveda is a science of life which offers wisdom designed to help people stay healthy while realizing their full human potential. For example, Ayurveda provides guidelines on ideal daily and seasonal routines, i.e. “panchakarma”.

"An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure."

The word “panchakarma” comes from the the classic texts of Ayurveda, and means ‘five actions’. These five actions of panchakarma refers to a cleansing process used to remove impurities from the body. Panchakarma is a very powerful and effective cleansing program. Although a complete panchakarma cleanse should always be performed under the guidance of a qualified professional, in this post we will discuss a more simple and practical “home Ayurveda cleanse”. An Ayurveda cleanse is a wonderful detoxification program especially as a seasonal cleanse. This cleanse is beneficial as a routine preventative measure, helps reverse the buildup of toxins [“ama”], and is even helpful for specific conditions as we will discuss later.

Sri Sri Ayurveda Panchakarma - Art Of Living

Sri Sri Ayurveda Panchakarma is an initiative of the Art of Living Foundation, specializing in holistic wellness and rejuvenation through ayurvedic practices and alternative therapies under the guidance of Sri Sri Ravi Shankar. Sri Sri Ayurveda Panchakarma was established with a vision to bring the best of ayurveda to the world.

"Home Ayurveda Cleanse"
1. Preparation – Slowing Down
2. Internal Oleation
3. External Oleation 
4. Purgation 
5. Rejuvenation 

 

1. Preparation
Before considering a home Ayurveda cleanse, it is advised to gradually become less active at least a week prior to the cleanse. Likewise, dietary choices should become more simple. For example, a kitchari diet is often ideal. Also, evey night during the home Ayurveda cleanse it is advised to have 1/2 to 1 teaspoon of triphala. Tripala has many nourishing health benefits such as being an antioxidant and also has a mild laxative effective. Therefore, every night for the home Ayurveda cleanse, triphala should be taken about 1 hour after your evening meal which will help with both elimination and the cleansing process.

Triphala
Simply add about 1/2 to 1 teaspoon of triphala into a 1/2 cup of boiling water. Let the mixture steep for 10 minutes until warm, then drink.

Triphala Plus
Supports digestive system and elimination; assists body in absorbing nutrients; high-quality antioxidant; wide range of benefits.

 

2. Internal Oleation - [Days 1- 3]
We begin our home Ayurveda cleanse with “internal oleation”. This involves ingesting warm liquid ghee [clarified butter] on an empty stomach first thing in the morning - for the first three days. Ideally, consider having 2 tablespoons of warm ghee, either alone or you may prefer taking a few small sips of warm water after ingesting the ghee. The ingestion of ghee provides internal oleation and lubrication, which is necessary to bring fat soluable toxins [“ama”] from deep bodily tissue back to the G.I. tract. Our goal is to bring toxins from deep bodily tissue back into the intestinal tract which will eventually be eliminated; hence purification. Also, as a general rule, It is important to be observant making sure to eat only after true hunger has returned.

Special Considerations:
If not accustomed to having ghee first thing in the morning especially on an empty stomach, you may experience feeling nauseous. Therefore, a few simple considerations to help prevent this uncomfortable feeling.

Vata Types:
Considering adding a pinch of rock salt with your ghee

Pitta Types:
Considering adding 1/8th tsp of roasted cumin powder

Kapha Types:
Consider adding a pinch of trikatu with your ghee

 

3. External Oleation - [Days 4 - 8]
After completing the first three days of internal oleation - which is the ingestion of warm ghee first thing in the morning on an empty stomach - you are now ready for “external oleation” for the following 5 days. External oleation involves applying about 8 ounces of warm oil onto your skin. Gently massage the oil over your body for at least 20 minutes beginning with your feet and working your way up to your head. While massaging your extremities [i.e. arms and legs] make long strokes and while massaging your joints, consider circular motions. Similarly, while massaging your abdomen you should gently massage in a circular motion. Finally, apply oil to your head and hair making sure to include the external ear and this is very balancing and stress reducing.

Moisturizing Herbal Massage Oils
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Rest & Shower
After having massaged your entire body with warm oil for about 20 minutes, it is now a time to rest for about 5-10 minutes before taking a nice warm shower. While resting during this short duration before your shower, it’s important to stay warm. Therefore, in order to remain warm and avoid losing ambient heat, consider keeping your bathroom comfortably warm and stay wrapped in a towel.

A Nice Warm Shower
After having applied warm oil onto your skin and massaging it throughout your entire body - it’s now time for a nice warm shower. Consider, using a mild Ayurvedic herbal soap, for example neem soap and chamomile shampoo. It is also considered beneficial to allow some of the oil to remain on your skin even after having taken shower.

Herbal Body Cleansing Soaps
A special blend of ayurvedic herbs creating a light and fresh herbal soap bar which cleanses deeply.

 

4. Purgation - [Days 6 - 8]
Throughout the entire process of the home panchakarma cleanse, impurities from different parts of the body have been loosened and drawn into the intestinal tract. Now we are ready to eliminate these toxins through the process of purgation. Apart from the recommended evening use of triphala, as described above - the last three days of your home Ayurveda cleanse involves purgation by the use of a medicated enema called “basti”.

Basti
Consider making a dashamula tea for the enema mixture. Simply boil 1 tablespoon of the herbal mixture of dashmula into a pint of water for approximately 5 minutes. Let this dashamula tea cool, then strain, and then use it as an enema. Once the enema has been administered into the rectum, retain the liquid for as long as you comfortably can.

Ayurvedic Detox Program 
2-4 capsules of herbal cleanse before bed will cleanse the bowel.
2 tablets of elim-tox or elim-tox-o morning and evening will cleanse the liver, blood, sweat glands and the elimination system.
2 tablets of organic genitrac morning and evening will purify the urinary tract and assist the removal of toxins.

Note:
We recommend that after completing your cleanse, you continue with organic digest tone (triphala plus) to support healthy elimination and digestion.

A Word Of Caution:
It is always advised to have assistance from a qualified professional for therapeutic procedures such as “basti”.

 

5. Rejuvenation
For maintaining wellness, the purpose of this home Ayurveda cleanse is to purify the body by removing impurities. After completing this cleanse, it is important to begin rejuvenating the body once again so that you can enjoy good health while strengthening the body in order to prevent any future health conditions; i.e. disease. Ayurveda recommends rejuvenatives called “Rasayanas” which brings renewal to all the cells of the body resulting in good health and longevity. According to Ayurveda, “Rasayanas” build overall immunity while providing strength and vitality.

Amrit Kalash - "The Nectar Of Immortality"
Amrit Kalash is thought to be the ambrosial gift to bring about health and happiness for all of humanity. Traditional ayurvedic formula of 13 herbs that supports the health of mind, brain, and nerves; increases vitality and inner strength; powerful antioxidant — research shows it to be up to 1,000 times more effective than vitamins C and E

Full-spectrum antioxidant: targets mind & nervous system

  • 1000x more effective in eliminating free radicals (the root cause of aging) than vitamins C or E1
  • powerful food for the brain
  • significantly boosts immunity & vitality

 

Special Considerations:

Vata Types:
An excellent Rasayana for vata types is ashwagandha. Simply, mix 1 teaspoon of ashwagandha in a cup of warm milk and drink. Consider having this twice daily, in the morning and evening.

Pitta Type:
An excellent Rasayana for pitta types is shatavari. Mix 1 teaspoon of shatavari in a cup of warm milk and drink.

Caution:
If there is any lump in the breast or family history of breast cancer, it is best to avoid shatavari and instead consider substituting guduchi for shatavari as a rasayana for pitta types.

Kapha Types:
An excellent Rasayana for kapha types is punarnava. Therefore. mix 1 teaspoon of punarnava in a cup of warm water and drink.

 

Few Additional Suggestions:
While finishing your home pancharkarma cleanse, it is important to slowly and gradually resume your daily activities. Therefore, make sure to get plenty of rest and making sure to eat accordingly to your appetite making sure not to overindulge. Lastly, it is important to establish a healthy daily routine [“dinacharya”] which incorporates the activities of yoga, meditation, and pranayama.

 

Resource: 
This home Ayurveda cleanse is inspired by the teachings of Dr. Vasant Lad. Dr. Lad is both a physician and professor who is considered one of the foremost expects on the subject of Ayurveda. Each year, Dr. Lad travels throughout the world, consulting privately and giving lectures. Coming to the United States in 1979 and lecturing for over 30 years, Dr. Lad has influenced and touched the hearts of his students.

Disclaimer
The sole purpose of these articles is to provide information about the tradition of ayurveda. This information is not intended for use in the diagnosis, treatment, cure or prevention of any disease. If you have any serious acute or chronic health concern, please consult a trained health professional who can fully assess your needs and address them effectively. If you are seeking the medical advice of a trained ayurvedic expert, call or e-mail us for the number of a physician in your area. Check with your doctor before taking herbs or using essential oils when pregnant or nursing.


Nature's Greatest Antioxidant

 

Nature’s Greatest Antioxidant
The continuous production of free radicals in the body is inescapable and living in the modern world is a recipe for free radicals. Free radicals are molecules [i.e. oxygen] that have lost an electron and therefore become very reactive, unstable, and damaging. Being reactive and unstable, free radicals attempt to steal electrons from neighboring cells which can disrupt normal cellular activity. For example, if free radicals attack the cell membrane, enzymes, or even DNA this can produce a chain reaction of cellular destruction. Even worse, if DNA is altered this can lead to cellular dysfunction, mutations, and even cancer.

Antioxidants - Your Defense Against Free Radicals
According to the NIH [National Institute Of Health], antioxidants are substances which can prevent or delay certain types of cell damage. Interestingly, antioxidants are not really a substance but rather a “behavior” of donating an electron to the damaging free radical. More simply, misbehaving free radicals are the bad guys while antioxidants are the good guys, behaving nicely. Likewise, “oxidative stress” from free radicals increases the aging process and has been linked to serious health conditions such as heart disease, strokes, diabetes, cancer, and autoimmune diseases.

What Are Antioxidants And Free Radicals Anyways? 

The Ancient Wisdom Of Ayurveda
Ayurveda” literally means ‘knowledge’ or ‘the science of life’. Although the exact age of Ayurveda is unknown, the ancient wisdom of Ayurveda is thought to date back several millennia; being eternal and timeless. The recipes for many Ayurvedic formulas were first discovered thousands of years ago and over the course of time, much of the knowledge of these herbal formulas was lost to the general public. However, some of these formulations were guarded and handed down though the generations. Lucky for us, one of nature’s greatest antioxidant is described below.

“Rasayanas promote longevity, memory, intelligence, freedom from disorders, youthfulness, excellence of luster and complexion, optimum strength of physique and sense organs.” - Ancient Wisdom Of Ayurveda

“Rasayanas” - Nature’s Greatest Antioxidant
Rasayanas are powerful free radical scavengers and generally contain a variety polyphenols, bioflavonoids, catechins, carotenoids, as well as vitamin C and vitamin E.  Interestingly, out of the main branches of Ayurveda, the study of “Rasayanas” is primarily concerned with strengthening the immune system. In fact, “Rasayana” means “that which supports rasa” - rasa being equivalent to plasma and chyle and said to nourish all bodily tissue. According to Ayurveda, Amalaki is considered one of the most nourishing and rejuvenating herbs. In fact, Charak – the ancient scholar of Ayurveda states “of all the Rasayanas, Amalaki is revered as one of the most potent and nourishing; Amalaki is the best among rejuvenative herbs.” Amalaki is a strong natural antioxidant containing high levels of vitamin C and acts as a powerful immune strengthener. Amalaki is one of the best sources of natural vitamin C and contains 20 times more vitamin C than an orange. Amalaki is commonly known as Indian gooseberry or amla, and the Sanskrit name “Amalika” means ‘sour juice of the fruit’. Interestingly, despite all the health benefits, Amalaki is also commonly known as the “poor man’s apple”.

Amrit Kalash Ambrosia 
Traditional ayurvedic formula of 13 herbs that supports the health of mind, brain, and nerves; increases vitality and inner strength; powerful antioxidant — research shows it to be up to 1,000 times more effective than vitamins C and E.

Amrit Kalash: Full-spectrum antioxidant:

  • 1000x more effective in eliminating free radicals (the root cause of aging) than vitamins C or E1
  • powerful food for the brain
  • significantly boosts immunity & vitality
  • best taken with Amrit Nectar
  • vata, pitta, kapha balancing (vpk®)

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Premium Amla Berry
Works as a powerful antioxidant for people of all ages which supports the mind, eyes, heart, skin, and digestion; helps growth of muscle tissue by promoting nitrogen balance; promotes cellular generation; supports lungs and natural immunity.

Bio-Immune
Supports natural immunity; helps detoxify blood and promotes cellular regeneration.

Another way to consume Amalaki is by taking Chyawanprash. Chyawanprash is an herbal jam made from a base of Amalaki and also contains sugar, honey, ghee, sesame oil, berries, and a variety of spices. Chyawanprash can be taken a variety of ways. For example, Chyawanprash can be taken alone, stirred into milk, or even spread onto toast. Generally, 1 to 2 teaspoons of Chyawanprash is taken once or twice daily; under the direction of a qualified professional.

Healthy Lifestyle. Healthy Immunity.

Eating Healthy.
In order to be healthy, the microbial ecosystem in the gut must be healthy. If the gut flora becomes imbalanced this can weaken the immune response. The gut flora promotes optimal digestive function, provides a robust immune response, regulates metabolism and even compromises more than 75% of our immune system.

Spices To Improve Digestion
Ready-to-use spice mixtures satisfy the six ayurvedic tastes considered essential for balance.

Organic Digest Tone (Triphala Plus) 
Organic Digest Tone contains three remarkable fruits — amla, chebulic myrobalan and belleric myrobalan — and each possesses the superior rejuvenative and health-giving qualities known as a "Rasayana" which supports digestion and elimination; assists body in absorbing nutrients; high-quality antioxidant; wide range of benefits.

Herbal Di-Gest
The herbs in Herbal Di-Gest are combined in precise proportions and prepared in the traditional ayurvedic way. This aids the bioavailability and assimilation of vital nutrients. It also creates synergy — the collective benefit is much greater than that of isolated, individual herbs.

Deep Rest & Blissful Sleep.
It’s nearly impossible to be healthy without adequate sleep. Sleep is essential for the maintenance and repair of the neurological, endocrine, immune, musculoskeletal and digestive systems. Rather, sleep is necessary for all systems of the body. Period.

Deep Rest
Deep Rest helps support sleeping deeply through the night. This herbal formula is especially targeted for those who have difficulty staying asleep, waking up in the middle of the night. But it also helps those who have difficulty falling asleep and those who awaken early in the morning after less than six hours of sleep.

Blissful Sleep
The herbs in the Blissful Sleep formula produce a calming, balancing effect on the body, mind and emotions. You’ll find sleep becoming deeper and more restful. And you’ll wake up recharged, vitally alive, ready to take on the challenges of the day ahead.

Managing Stress.
Stress management is perhaps the most important factor regarding health because no matter what diet you follow, how much you exercise and what supplements you take, if you’re not managing your stress you will still be at risk for modern degenerative conditions like heart disease, diabetes, hypothyroidism and autoimmunity.

Stress Free Mind
Stress Free Mind supports natural resistance to daily mental stress and fatigue. This potent blend of whole herbal extracts, powders, and minerals nourishes and supports the immune system, which is often taxed by everyday mental stress.

Stress Free Emotions
For natural resistance to emotional stress and fatigue; promotes emotional balance, positive feelings, and feelings of fulfillment.

Disclaimer
The sole purpose of these articles is to provide information about the tradition of ayurveda. This information is not intended for use in the diagnosis, treatment, cure or prevention of any disease. If you have any serious acute or chronic health concern, please consult a trained health professional who can fully assess your needs and address them effectively. If you are seeking the medical advice of a trained ayurvedic expert, call or e-mail us for the number of a physician in your area. Check with your doctor before taking herbs or using essential oils when pregnant or nursing.

 


Health Benefits Of Tikta Ghrita [“Bitter Ghee”]

Health Benefits Of Tikta Ghrita
Tikta Ghrita, often translated as “bitter ghee”, is clarified butter infused with some of the more powerful herbs that Ayurvedic medicine has to offer. “Tikta” refers to bitterness and ghrita or ghee is made by cooking butter until the oil separates from the milk solids and the moisture is evaporated. Ghee has long been revered in India and is often used as a carrier for herbs. Ghee acts as the base and being an oil it easily penetrates lipid membranes thereby facilitating deeper penetration of herbs into bodily tissue while enhancing the potency and action of the herbs. Tikta Ghrita is a traditional Ayurvedic formula that has been used for thousands of years. According to the ancient wisdom of Ayurveda, tikta ghrita has purifying and strengthening effects on the liver and deep tissues of the body.

Great Video: Top Ten Reasons To Cleanse With Ghee - Dr. John Douillard

Health Benefits of Tikta Ghrita:

  • Reduces inflammation
  • Strengthens and detoxifies the liver
  • Helps to cleanse and purify blood
  • Useful in Ayurvedic cleanse [i.e. Panchakarma]
  • Detoxifies deep bodily tissues
  • Cleanses the GI tract
  • Helps regulate blood sugar
  • Improves certain skin conditions [i.e. acne, eczema, psoriasis]
  • Cools excess heat [pitta] in the body
  • Helps improve arthritic conditions
  • Balancing to all doshas, especially Pitta disorders
  • May be used externally for skin disorders

 

Tikta Ghrita is often indicated for a variety of “pitta conditions” such as liver disorders, inflammation, and certain skin conditions such as acne, urticaria, hives, rashes - which represents excess heat which resides within the body. Traditionally, it is administered as part of an Ayurvedic cleanse [i.e. Panchakarma] as it helps to balance pitta. Likewise, a small dose of Tikta Ghrita may also be taken daily as a routine maintenance of health. Tikta Ghrita is also beneficial in the protection and maintenance of Ojas [“vital essence”] and is considered best for pitta and kapha type imbalances. Since Tikta Ghrita is bitter it may increase vata and therefore should only be used under the guidance of a qualified Ayurvedic practitioner.

 

Tikta Ghrita includes many bitter herbs in ghee some of which include:

  • neem
  • guduchi
  • trikatu
  • manjistha
  • kutk
  • kalmegha
  • bhumiamalaki
  • turmeric
  • daruharidra
  • karella [bitter melon]
  • musta

 

... and several other herbs!!

 

Disclaimer
The sole purpose of these articles is to provide information about the tradition of ayurveda. This information is not intended for use in the diagnosis, treatment, cure or prevention of any disease. If you have any serious acute or chronic health concern, please consult a trained health professional who can fully assess your needs and address them effectively. If you are seeking the medical advice of a trained ayurvedic expert, call or e-mail us for the number of a physician in your area. Check with your doctor before taking herbs or using essential oils when pregnant or nursing.


Nourishing The Body, Mind, & Soul - An Ayurvedic Perspective

 

Nourishing The Body, Mind, & Soul
Ayurveda is considered the world’s oldest and most complete system of natural healing. It’s said that the knowledge of Ayurveda is eternal and is revealed in order to help relieve the suffering of humanity. Perhaps the most universal aspect of Ayurveda is to establish balance, peace of mind, and happiness.

“The natural force within each of us
is that perfect healer of all.”

- Hippocrates

According to the classic texts, three aspects of the mind include:

  1. Dhi, the ability to learn and acquire knowledge
  2. Dhriti, the ability to process and retain information
  3. Smriti, the ability to recall, memory

 

Recalling Our True Nature
In nearly all ancient cultures, nature has often been considered the greatest healer. Interestingly, in Ayurveda “prajnaparadha” [crime against intellect] is considered the root cause of all disease. Perhaps the greatest crime from a vedic perspective is to separate one’s true identify with that all of creation. Therefore, by thoroughly recalling the wholeness of life springs forth the source of all healing and bliss - within.

Introduction To Ayurveda - Living In Balance With Ayurveda 

Ayurveda and Yoga consultant and educator Myra Lewin provides an introduction to Ayurvedic living and bringing yourself back to balance. Ayurveda an ancient science of life that incorporates diet, lifestyle, spirituality, and healing.

 

"True Nourishment"

Nourishing the mind begins with a healthy daily routine. According to the ancient wisdom of Ayurveda, health rests upon a foundation supported by three pillars – the three pillars being sleep, diet, and overall balance of life. If any one of these three pillars becomes weakened, it’s thought that the overall health and well-being of a person may be affected. Therefore, in order to function optimally especially during modern times, let us look at specific ways to help maintain balance.

Sleep:
It’s nearly impossible to be healthy without adequate sleep. Sleep is essential for the maintenance and repair of the neurological, endocrine, immune, musculoskeletal and digestive systems. Rather, sleep is necessary for all systems of the body. Period.

Just some of the obvious benefits of a great night sleep:

  • Enhances memory and mental clarity
  • Improves athletic performance.
  • Boosts mood and overall energy.
  • Improves immune function.
  • Increases stress tolerance

 

HOT MILK – The Natural Sleep Aid
Hot milk – milk is a wonderful source of tryptophan which helps induce sleep. If consumed an hour before bed with a pinch of nutmeg, it can provide sound and restful sleep.
Click Here – To Learn 8 Tips For Sound Sleep

Healthy Digestion:
Ayurveda has described the underlying function of digestion and metabolism in our body as Agni [“Fire”]. Regarding the importance of Agni, the father of Ayurveda – Charak stated that when Agni of the individual is balanced then that person would be absolutely healthy and would lead a long, happy and healthy life.

Practical Tips For Healthy Digestion
Although simple, these principles if followed routinely, are often enough to help improve your digestion and overall health. Often it’s the simple things that are most effective and oddly enough - most overlooked. That said, let’s quickly take a look at the basics.

  • All food should be freshly prepared, nutritious, and appetizing
  • Food should generally contain all 6 tastes balanced to one’s needs
  • We should leave 4-6 hours between meals with no snacking in between
  • Eat your largest meal during the day when the sun is at its peak
  • Relax and enjoy your meals in a calm soothing environment

 

GHEE - Heal The Gut & Nourish The Mind
Healthy digestion is considered the fundamental pillar of good health. According to Ayurvedic literature, ghee increases the digestive function and thought to nourish nearly all tissues of the body – specifically the gastrointestinal tract by reducing inflammatory conditions, reducing seepage of undigested food particles, and aids in repair of the mucosal wall.

Click Here
– To Learn More About Ghee
Click Here - To Learn Simple Tips For Healthy Digestion

Overall Balance:
Knowing nature to be whole and complete, good health implies restoring that natural state of completeness and wholeness. According to the science of Ayurveda, health is a natural state when there is perfect balance of your body, mind, and spirit.

Ayurveda gives prime importance to:
- balanced doshas
- balanced digestion
- optimal function of bodily tissue and waste elimination
- balanced state of mind, clarity of the sense, and happiness
Click Here - To Learn More About Achieving Balance

Happiness & Bliss...

“When the emotional heart is balanced, one gains pure knowledge,
the desires of the mind are always righteous, and one experiences unbounded bliss.”
– Sushruta Samhita

The science of Ayurveda commonly talks about “Ojas” as being the end-product of perfect digestion. However, digestion in terms of Ayurveda has a profound meaning. This implies properly digesting all that nourishes us; including everyday experiences of life [i.e. thoughts, feelings, emotions, etc.]. Nearly all Ayurvedic treatment is designed to increase the abundance of superior quality of ojas and to avoid reducing ojas – as ojas is considered central to restoring health and preventing illness. Similarly, ojas is thought to be the most important element which designs and shapes the influence our experiences creates upon the mind.

Click Here - For A Guide To Happiness

Nourishing The Soul
A basic fundamental premise to both Ayurveda and Yoga is that – both a sound mind and sound body are integral to one’s overall health and well-being.

Just Some Of The Potential Benefits Of Meditation:
– greater clarity and inner calmness
– increased creativity and happiness
– improved sense of emotional stability
– reduced level of anxiety and depression
– improved brain function and memory
– reduced level of stress
… the list can go on and on …

Click Here – To Learn More About The Benefits Of Meditation

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Click Here - For Healthy Living With Ayurveda


How To Reduce Sugar Cravings - An Ayurvedic Perspective

 

Sugar Cravings
One moment, you’re innocently going about your day - the next moment, you discover yourself in the clutches of desire. Despite having a healthy salad for lunch it is now 2:30 pm and you somehow find yourself lost in desire with an overwhelming losing battle for a chocolate cupcake with buttercream icing.

 

"The Afternoon Dip"
Do you ever notice that in the mid-afternoon you feel that dip in your energy? In a study from Tufts University, 91% of women said they experienced strong food cravings. And willpower isn't the answer. The solution to this daily conundrum may actually be more simple than we anticipate assuming we discover the root cause of this craving.

 

The Brain’s [Demanding] Energetics
By eating fewer calories a day or restricting an entire food group [like carbs], you're putting your body in prime craving mode. The brain is a remarkable organ with immense sophistication. Despite its eloquent sophistication, the brain is quite demanding. In fact, the brain uses up to 80% of the body’s blood sugar and if these demands are not met - the stress response kicks into overdrive.

THE STRESS RESPONSE:
When the nervous system is activated with low blood sugar it alarms the “stress response” and initiates the fight-or-flight changes within the body. The end result of all this is your overwhelming ‘food craving’. This craving is often a losing battle because the body looks upon sugar [ i.e. delicious yummy cupcake] as a quick source of life-saving energy. What makes it worse is the conditioned response we often get with the feel-good taste of that delicious cupcake. In fact, these urges are fueled by feel-good brain chemicals such as dopamine, released when you eat these types of foods, which creates a rush of euphoria that your brain seeks over and over.

A Moment On The Lips - An Innocent Kiss Of Death 
The answer to this daily conundrum from an Ayurvedic perspective is ghee [clarified butter]. Yes, ghee. However, before we explain the benefits of ghee upon the body, more specifically the brain - let us first discuss the inflammatory stress response upon the body. The ultimate goal of the stress response is to ensure that the ‘commander in chief’ [i.e. the brain] receives fuel. Unfortunately this entails stimulating the adrenal glands to release stress-fighting hormones which stimulate the liver to break down glycogen into glucose thereby raising blood sugar levels. That’s not all. The hormones involved with the stress response are also involved with the production of inflammatory free radicals. In fact, these damaging free radicals are now considered to be the leading cause of aging, disease, and death. Suddenly, that innocent craving of a cupcake is no longer seeming so innocent.

"How To Reduce Sugar Cravings" - Dr. Josh Axe

This videos shares with you ways to reduce sugar cravings. The number one way people fall off a diet is when someone has a craving. Here are top four ways to reduce sugar cravings:

1. Consume more fiber
2. Consume more protein
3. Consume more healthy fats
4. Consume sour foods

 

An Ayurvedic Perspective
The ancient science of Ayurveda described certain aspects of human physiology by metaphorical terms namely “vata-pitta-kapha”.  Although not exacting but enough to convey the point - we can think of the above inflammatory stress response as ‘pitta’. Ayurveda explained thousands of years ago the nature of pitta as being hot, sharp and penetrating while being represented by the element of fire. It is to no surprise that when the FLAME of pitta is increased that this fire element will then lead to inflammation [in -FLAME-ation].

The Answer - GHEE
Once again, the answer to this daily conundrum from an Ayurvedic perspective is ghee. Ghee is considered the best food to help pacify pitta - pitta being the metaphor of the entire inflammatory cascade as explained above. Even modern science demonstrates the benefit of ghee upon reducing the oxidative and inflammatory process. Therefore, by introducing increased amount of good quality fat [i.e. ghee] the body will less likely experience the roller coaster-like effects of blood sugar highs and lows. The reason for supporting increased amount of healthy fat intake in our daily diet is because fat burned within the body is done so in a more stable and even fashion. This evenly-fashioned chemistry of the body will help prevent the peaks and troughs of blood sugar levels and help prevent those not-so-innocent cravings. Prevention is better than the cure. Therefore, in order to prevent the overwhelming losing battle of the mid-day sweet cravings simply consider adding more healthy fat to your lunch. This will allow you to coast through the afternoon avoiding the inflammatory alarm bells of low sugar levels. Lastly, the avoidance of mid-day snacks will perfectly time your appetite for a healthy dinner by early evening.

CLICK HERE - For More Benefits Of Ghee

 

Still tempted? Ask Yourself 3 Questions: 

  1. Ask yourself: Am I stressed out?
    As discussed above - when you're under pressure, your body releases the hormone cortisol, which signals your brain to seek out rewards.
  2. Ask yourself: Have I been eating less than usual?
    If you're eating fewer than 1,000 calories a day or restricting an entire food group (like carbs), you're putting your body in prime craving mode.
  3. Ask yourself: Am I getting enough sleep?
    In a University of Chicago study, a few sleepless nights were enough to drop levels of the hormone leptin (which signals satiety) by 18% and boost levels of ghrelin, an appetite trigger, by about 30%. Those two changes alone caused appetite to kick into overdrive, and cravings for starchy foods like cookies and bread jumped 45%.

 

Want More?
Gurmar is one of the most prevalent ayurvedic herbs for diabetes. Also known as Shardunika the name Gurmar translates to ‘destroyer of sugar’ and thereby suggestive of its properties as being an effective herb for balancing blood sugar levels.

CLICK HERE - To Learn More About Gurmar - The Sugar Destroyer


3 Health Benefits Of Ghee + Simple Tips On Making Your Own Ghee

 

3 Health Benefits Of Ghee
The ancient science of Ayurveda has long revered ghee [clarified butter] as an elixir for health and longevity. Very much like butter, ghee has received a bad reputation for many decades due to its high saturated fat content. Research is revealing that instead of increasing the risk of heart disease, ghee may actually decrease the risk instead. That’s not all. Ghee made from grass-fed cow’s milk containing vitamins A,D,E and K, along with fatty acids conjugated linoleic acid [CLA] and butyric acid is now revealing other interesting health benefits.

Ghee + Heart Health:
Ghee is rich in conjugated linoleic acid [CLA] which is a fatty acid with known protective qualities against arterial plaque formation and diabetes - known risk factors of heart disease. According to some studies [to prevent cardiovascular disease], researchers say that ghee can potentially be used to help prevent heart disease.

Ghee + Gut Health:
Healthy digestion is considered the fundamental pillar of good health. According to Ayurvedic literature, ghee increases the digestive function and thought to nourish nearly all tissues of the body - specifically the gastrointestinal tract. According to Phyllis A. Balch, author of Prescription for Nutritional Healing, butyric acid is “a monounsaturated fatty acid [that] reduces inflammatory conditions, reduces seepage of undigested food particles, and aids in repair of the mucosal wall.”

Ghee + Weight Loss:
Not only is conjugated linoleic acid [CLA] considered beneficial to heart health but it has also been shown to help prevent weight gain and may even help with weight loss. According to a certain study CLA supplementation in overweight individuals demonstrated significant weight loss over a six month period. Further studies are obviously needed - however this is a good step in the right direction to help validate the ancient wisdom of Ayurveda.


Great Video Demonstrating How Easy It Is To Make Ghee. 

Simple Steps For Making Ghee
1. Place two pounds of butter [preferably grass-fed, organic, and unsalted] into a heavy yet medium sized pot and turn the heat to medium.

2. Heat the butter until the butter melts making sure not to burn the butter. Once the butter has melted, turn down the heat and continue to cook to a very light boil typically for 15-20 minutes. After about 15-20 minutes you will notice the most amazing aroma of buttered popcorn and the beautiful golden color of ghee.

3.  White-colored curds will begin to form as the butter continues to lightly boil. Once these white-colored curds turn into a light tan color, carefully remove the pot from the heat source. Your ghee is now ready to cool until it is just barely warm. Once the ghee is warm strain the clear ghee into a clean container using a cheesecloth and discard the curds which are left on the bottom of the pot.

* Two pounds of butter generally creates 1 quart of ghee
* Always keep a clean storage of ghee to prevent contamination
* Ghee does not require refrigeration
* Health benefits of ghee are thought to increase with age

Buy Organic Ghee Online

DISCLAIMER:
This is strictly for educational purposes only and NOT to be considered medical advice.
Always first discuss with your primary care physician before considering any new health regimen.


Ashwagandha Milk & Ghee - Strength Giving And Stamina Of A Horse

Ashwagandha Milk & Ghee - Strength Giving And Stamina Of A Horse
Ashwagandha is a renowned ayurvedic herb that can act as both a tonic and a sedative. The name Ashwagandha translates to “smell of the horse” which refers to the fact that fresh Ashwagandha root smells of horse urine! However, this meaning also relates to the strength, vitality and vigor of the animal, all qualities which Ashwagandha itself imbibes. As a popular rejuvenate herb - Ashwagandha is also an aphrodisiac, a nervine and has galactagogue properties. It helps strengthen the reproductive system, and when used with shatavari can help relieve sexual debility.  In excess it can increase heat in the body and so its use must be carefully monitored.

Properties:
Ashwagandha is a light and oily herb and has a bitter, astringent taste with a heating effect in the body. Its post digestive effect is sweet and it is also effective on the reproductive, nervous and respiratory systems.

Some Indications, Amongst Others, Include:
·        Emaciation/ low body weight
·        Weak muscle tone and fatigue
·        Sexual debility
·        Insomnia
·        Osteoarthritis
·        Neutropenia
·        Weak immunity / weak immune system
·        Anxiety
·        Seizures
·        Tuberculosis
·        Asthma / cough
·        Hayfever
·        ADHD
·        Stress
·        Menstrual imbalances

 Word Of Caution:

  • It is important to be aware of some of the contraindications of using Ashwagandha. In cases of excess heat and/or congestion it is not recommended. Although in india it is used to strengthen the uterus during pregnancy, it also has a spasmolytic effect that may be contraindicated in pregnancy.
  •  Always seek a physician’s advice before undertaking herbal supplementation.

 

Usage:
There are many combination compounds that involve Ashwagandha to address certain conditions.
Some being:
·        Ashwagandha and shatavari as a uterine tonic and for infertility
·        Ashwagandha and Pippali for use in asthma and coughs
·        Ashwagandha, Brahmi and Vacha for nerve disorders
·        Ashwagandha, guggulu and turmeric for arthritic and congestive disorders


Ashwagandha Milk
A delicious tonic to take at night is Ashwagandha milk. It is especially beneficial for promoting spermatogenesis and as an aphrodisiac. With a pinch of nutmeg, Ashwagandha milk can aid in insomnia by inducing natural sleep. It also promotes the growth and tones the breast tissue; therefore it is particularly helpful in sagging breasts. Used with licorice it can act as a galactagogue and boost lactation.  It is a simple and quick recipe.

 Ingredients:
·        1 teaspoon of Ashwagandha powder
·        8oz of whole milk (preferably organic and non- homogenized)

1.      Bring the milk to a boil in a pan.
2.      Add the Ashwagandha and simmer gently for a few minutes
3.      Pour into a cup and enjoy!

  •  Add a pinch of nutmeg for a carminative effect
  • Other spices, such as cinnamon, cardamom can also be used for taste

 

Ashwagandha Ghee Recipe
A useful and delicious way to take Ashwagandha is in ghee form. It is a wonderful way to combat high vata whilst enjoying it in foods. It is very simple to make although does take a little time.

 Ingredients:
·        2oz Organic Ashwagandha powder
·        32oz Spring water
·        8oz Organic ghee

1.      Combine the powder and water into a pan and heat on medium/high heat stirring frequently (wooden spoons are best used here) until the mixture is reduced by a quarter. In other words, from 4 cups of water to 1 cup - may take up to an hour.

2.      Once cooled, strain the mixture into a glass jar using a cheesecloth or a cotton muslin cloth. The glass jar will hold the pure Ashwagandha decoction.

3.      Add the ghee to a pan and pour in the strained Ashwagandha liquid. Keep under medium heat and stir frequently until the water is completely boiled off. This can take up to 2 hours.

4.      Finally transfer the Ashwagandha ghee to a glass jar with airtight lid. Enjoy!

  •  This ghee can be used internally or even externally as a massage oil if indicated.

 

References
·        Lad, V. (1999). The complete book of Ayurvedic home remedies.
·        Sharma, H. (2011). Ayurvedic Healing. Singing Dragon
·        Lad, V. (2002). Textbook of Ayurveda.
·        Lad, V., & Frawley, D. (1986). The yoga of herbs
·        Pole, S. (2013). Ayurvedic medicine the principles of traditional practice
·        Green, J. (2000). The herbal medicine-makers' handbook a home manual
·        Lad, V. (2012). Ayurvedic perspectives on selected pathologies