The Ayurveda Dosha Clock - A Healthy Daily Routine [Dinacharya]

Disclaimer:
All content included on this website (including, but not limited to,  images, photos, graphics and text) is the property of ‘Healthy Ayurveda’ and ‘Vedic Sage’ and as such is protected by US and international copyright and other intellectual property laws.

THE DOSHA CLOCK
According to Ayurveda, the rhythm of life is governed by cycles and in order to maintain health and balance we need to learn how to live in accordance to nature’s daily cycle. Ayurveda speaks about biological time as a function of three doshas [vata–pitta–kapha] in relation to chronological time with each dosha being more active at a particular time of day and night. To help bring us in tune with nature, and rather our own intelligence, following a dinacharya [daily routine] is essential for establishing great health and regularizing our own biological clock.

Not only is timing of importance but how we approach life is essential. For example, waking up to a jolting alarm clock is enough to set off a cascade of alarming stress responses which is obviously not the ideal way of starting off the day.

Similarly, waking up during the late and lazy time of the morning can create a slow/sluggish feeling throughout the day. Let us now take a closer look at the "Dosha Clock" and see how we can use it to our best advantage in order to harness the natural influences of nature.

VATA TIME ...
Early morning before sunrise is the time of vata. The qualities of vata are expressed with brisk coolness in the air and the beginning of increased activity of nature as birds begin to sing and people begin a new day.


“Brahmamuhurtha – “Time Of Brahma”
Brahmamuhurtha is considered 1 hr 36 minutes before sunrise and thought to be an auspicious time for meditation. This period of time is a junction point between night and early morning and is considered a time of heightened awareness. Therefore, Brahmamuhurtha is considered an auspicious time of day best suited for praying, meditating, and contemplation.

THE MORNING ROUTINE

Whilst this is not an easy task for some, arising early is beneficial in starting the day. The pure and subtle qualities of nature that is present at this time of the day will bring peace and freshness to the mind and senses. People who have more of the earth and water qualities should arise between 5-5.30AM. Those who have more of the fire element should arise between 5.30-6AM and those who have more light, air and space constitutions should arise between 6-6.30AM. After arising it is beneficial to say a little prayer or mantra before getting out of bed.

Elimination
Elimination is one of the three pillars of health according to Ayurveda. If there is proper daily elimination, good health is simpler to attain. When food is not properly digested toxins can build up, creating sluggish digestion. It is important to train the body to have a daily elimination. According to Ayurveda if one misses a daily bowel movement, then the person is said to be constipated. In today’s medical world, constipation is classified as having fewer than three bowel movements a week. To ensure that daily elimination is taking place, one must follow a proper diet and lifestyle for their constitution. Keeping hydrated and the use of herbs, such as triphala, can also help with regulation of bowels.

Washing the face with cold water will bring alertness to the mind. It is a good idea to also wash the eyes and rinse the mouth with cool water. There are a few ayurvedic eye washes that are recommended based upon ones constitution. Triphala tea, rose water and even diluted pomegranate juice are effective eye wash solutions.

Tongue Scraping
An important part of the dinacharya is scraping the tongue. Scraping the tongue can aid in digestion, absorption and assimilation as it stimulates the internal organs. It also removes bacteria. There are a variety of tongue scrapers available on the market today – gold, copper and silver ones. However, stainless steel tongue scrapers are generally suitable for all.

Oral Care
There are many health benefits of oil pulling. This is a technique where a tablespoon of oil (usually sesame or coconut) is swished in the mouth for 10-20 minutes. From promoting dental hygiene to detoxifying the body and increasing energy, oil pulling is an ancient yet current health benefit. However if time is a factor, even a few minutes of oil swishing is advantageous. After spitting out the oil be sure to massage the gums and brush thoroughly. In Ayurveda this practice is referred to as ‘Gandusha’.


Nasya
Administering ghee or oils in the nasal passages can help with lubrication, cleansing and enhancing mental clarity and improving vision. Making sure that one is lying down with their nostrils parallel to the ceiling, add 3-5 nasal drops into each nostril and sniff deeply but gently. It is advisable to lie for a few minutes to allow the nasal drops to nourish prana. There are a variety of nasal drops recommended, such as brahmi ghee, calamus oil (medicated, not the essential oil) and regular ghee or sesame oil. It is important to note that nasya should not be done an hour before or after showering, or after exercising. It is also recommended to do nasya on an empty stomach. The health benefits of nasya are extensive.

Oil Massage (Abhyanga)
Massaging oil on the body is a great way to keep the skin soft, supple and wrinkle free. It is a rejuvenating technique that improves circulation and, when done at night, induces sleep. Massaging the scalp can prevent hair loss and graying. In the evenings, massaging the scalp and soles of the feet with bhringraj oil can help in achieving a calm, restorative sleep.

It is advisable to start with the outer extremities and work towards the heart. One should massage in a linear fashion along the limbs and with circular motions on the joints. Some popular oils used are coconut, sesame, sunflower and almond. According to one’s natural constitution, one should pick an oil that is appropriate to their state of balance.

Bathing should follow abhyanga to remove any excess oil left on the skin. Bathing is not only cleansing and refreshing, but also an activity that improves mental clarity and revitalizes the body. Using natural and chemical free soaps are recommended. During the summer months it is advisable to shower with cooler water than the winter months. This helps the body to keep in tune with nature and the surrounding environment.

Practicing yoga daily is recommended for all body types. There are various postures and poses that can help to alleviate many conditions and diseases. Yoga is a vital and important daily activity that brings balance and serenity into life.

There are many types of breathing techniques that have various uses for the body. From lowering blood pressure to reducing weight and cooling the body, it is important to know which pranayama would be indicated for personal use. Pranayama increases the vital energy force in the body and therefore is recommended for health and longevity.

Exercise is an important part of life. Walking daily, particularly in the early mornings, maintains good health and balance. Although many people practice vigorous exercise, this is not always recommended. Ayurveda advises stretching and breathing whereas straining is to be avoided.The profound health benefits of meditation are staggering. A simple technique, it allows one to connect with the divinity within oneself and should be a daily practice. There are a few methods that one can choose from simple breathing to mantra based meditation. Amongst many benefits, meditation brings peace, harmony and clarity into one’s life.

Breakfast
When kapha is high, digestion is often slow or diminished. Therefore, it is wise to avoid heavy meals first thing in the morning. Instead, we should consider light and warm meals which can be more easily digested.

Activity
Mid-day is when the day heats up as the sun becomes stronger and reaches its peak. It’s the fire element of the sun which brings about light, warmth, and dryness to the day. It’s during this period when the internal and external heat is at its height and therefore is not the most ideal time to exercise or become overly active. Pitta types who predominantly have a fiery element should especially make sure not to overly exert themselves at this time.

Lunch
During mid-day, kapha decreases while pitta increases. As pitta continues to increase you will notice an increase in appetite reflecting when the power of digestion is at its peak. Generally, the largest meal of the day should be eaten at this time when the metabolic digestive fire [“agni”] digests and assimilates food optimally.

During this time of day the air element of vata increases as we notice the day soon becomes cooler and more windy. Vata energy brings about lightness to the mind which makes it more challenging to focus. Instead of struggling with focus, this may be a good time to reorganize your desk, revisit your 'Things-To-Do' list and consider brainstorming new ideas. Also, due to the lack of focus - instead of refilling on coffee it may be more worthwhile to meditate in order to regain focus during this vata time.

Time For Reflection
Sunset is a junction of day into night and is when the daily cycle repeats itself for the latter half of the day – meaning from 6 pm -10 pm kapha predominates as it did during the morning hours of 6 am- 10 am. Just as the early morning kapha times was a time of meditation, so true – kapha time during the evening is an ideal time for reflection. According to vedic philosophy, spiritual activities are amplified when performed at junction points. Therefore, this is a opportune time to meditate, chant, or do a calming yoga practice. Finally, as the suns energy begins to fade, and the cold and heavy energy of kapha dominates we soon begin to feel tired after a long and lengthy day. Relaxation is essential before bed – but first, dinner.

Dinner
Generally, dinner should be eaten early [between 6-7pm]. Eating too late in the evening may lead to undigested food remaining in the digestive tract and thus resulting in the accumulation of undigested food material – toxins [“ama”] in the colon. Similarly, a heavy meal during kapha time of the night can result in excess kapha qualities of heaviness and therefore result in weight gain and/or other kapha-related conditions. That said, pitta types may be able to eat slightly later due to their stronger digestive ability.

Sleep
In order to ensure restful sleep, relaxation is essential before bed. The aim is to be asleep before 10pm. Normally, the qualities of kapha accumulate throughout the evening and the body will naturally be tired. If we are in tune with these natural rhythms of life the body will naturally seek to experience deep and restorative sleep by this time.

Mid-night [10pm – 2am]
There is often great emphasis regarding falling asleep by 10pm because if one stays awake after 10 pm the active nature of pitta can prevent sleep. Pitta continues to increase during these late hours and its primary function is for repair and transformation of bodily tissue. However, if one remains awake during these late hours you will notice an increase in appetite i.e. “mid-night cravings” due to the fiery nature of pitta. Eating during these late hours is not conducive to health because pitta at night is not intended for digestion but rather repair and transformation of bodily tissue. Lastly, sleeping on a full stomach can result in the buildup of partially digested food [toxins] in the gastrointestinal tract and also thought to cause disturbing dreams; preventing restful sleep.

Individual – Unique Needs
The above mentioned influences of vata-pitta-kapha are basic guidelines to help align the individual with the natural rhythms of life. Depending on geographical and individual variations there will naturally be differences throughout the year in regards to dosha influences, the time of sunrise and sunset and seasonal-related influences. Therefore, as we become more in-tune with these rhythms of life we will also be able to develop a knowing on how to adjust our daily life accordingly.

Disclaimer:
All content included on this website (including, but not limited to,  images, photos, graphics and text) is the property of ‘Healthy Ayurveda’ and ‘Vedic Sage’ and as such is protected by US and international copyright and other intellectual property laws.


Making Health Happen: 5 Simple Steps To Accomplishing Your Health Goals

 

Making Health Happen
There are ideals and there are realities when it comes to health. We almost all know how profoundly different our lives could be if we ate right, exercised regularly, and rested when required. But life happens. We have soaring, sparkling goals but our ability to follow-through can fall short – the realities of social gatherings, packed work schedules, and life-long less-than-ideal living habits make health a true hurdle.

So the question stands, how do we make health happen without making ourselves inflexible or insane in the process? How do we find balance between holding ourselves accountable for necessary growth and transformation, and simultaneously allow space for spontaneity and enjoyment. Our reality is that what we set out to do isn’t always as easy to accomplish as we might think. In effect, we must find balance in the search for balance itself. Let’s explore some simple steps to making health happen in your life!

1. Commit: Intentions & Accountability 
How would you feel if you were to accomplish your health goals? What is it that you’d like to cultivate in life in general and what are the smaller goals you have to do to get there? Is it a sense of physical strength? Peace of mind? Focus and clarity? You create your reality. Let your mind dream of the beauty you yourself can create with right intention and focus. Draw, write, or confide in a safe person to help hold you accountable if you hit a rough patch down the road.

2. Organize: Get Detailed, Get Crafty
How many of you have run out eagerly for a new supplement, spice or herbal product only to find it unopened in the back of your cabinet months later? Our set-up for success is almost as vital a component as doing the practice or taking the product itself! Here are some simple execution tips to propel you towards your goals:

~ THE GAME PLAN
Decide on each component of your health plan and write it up! Even a detailed chart, specifying what time you plan to do each aspect of your health regimen can be vital when you start out. Committing to this kind of structure at first will make things easier later on. If art is your thing, let it be a craft project, and enjoy the practice of planning!

~ IN PLAIN SIGHT
Out of sight out of mind? It can be an unnecessary hurdle to achieve our health goals if our tools are hidden away. Keep your supplies at the ready! If it’s an awareness/meditation/breathing routine, carve out a small, quiet space to practice. If it’s an herbal protocol, keep a basket of your daily herbs/products out in plain sight! If you’re working with new ingredients and food choices keep those in immediate view in your cabinets, while your treats or junk food of the past get tossed or moved to the back! The power of suggestion is great – let the eyes feast on what the body needs.

~ IT’S ABOUT TIME
So many of our health imbalances originate from a simple lack of time given to our own care. Sit down with The Game Plan you or your practitioner have laid out and schedule in time to accomplish what you’ve set out to do. Does it take 15 minutes to do that brief yoga sequence? Or 10 to brew and sip your herbal tea in the morning? Make sure to factor this in to your morning routine. Set alarms, on your computer or phone for those tasks, especially the hard-to-remember ones.

3. Routine: Your Home Away From Home 
In Ayurveda dinacharya, is one’s daily routine, and according to Dr. Vasant Lad of the Ayurvedic Institute is “absolutely necessary to bring radical change in body, mind and consciousness.” Routine “regularizes a person’s biological clock, aids digestion, absorption and assimilation, and generates self-esteem, discipline, peace, happiness, and longevity.” Dinacharya creates a container in which you can factor in each of your new health routines – anything from herbal protocols, spiritual practices, and exercise to ‘free time’ or ‘creative time’. The best part? Our routine can travel with us anywhere, giving us the comfort of home in the encasement of ourselves.

4. What’s Flex? What’s Fluid?
When we embark on a new health journey it’s important to hold ourselves accountable to our most influential goals. Which of our tasks are NON-NEGOTIABLE for the rest of our objectives to fall into place? Start simple. Is it that 10pm bedtime? Taking our herbal formula first thing in the morning? Can you be flexible about your diet on the weekends if you’ve remained committed during the week?  Decide what is absolute and what is fluid. When you’ve paved a firm foundation, you can always layer on additional goals.

5. Clean Body, Clear Focus
Sometimes the mere thought of change is enough to send us into a panic. “What if we fail?”, “I’m not ready”,”It’s too hard.” Doubt prevails. The truth is that the mentality itself can be quickly shifted with a few basic cleansing measures. Our tools? Triphala. Nasya. Journaling. Hydration. Sleep.

Let’s Explore:
Triphala is a detox herb in Ayurveda that can be used safely for nearly anyone – it promotes regularity in elimination, supports healthy digestion, and is a natural antioxidant. It’s a gentle detoxification measure that can create a profound shift in our everyday energy and clarity.  More info on triphala here.

Nasya is the nasal administration of medicated oils. It delivers its mind cleansing and rejuvenating properties directly across the blood-brain barrier to nourish the brain. Taking a nasya oil in the morning helps open and clear the mind, allowing for the successful follow-through of your health goals. Learn more about nasya options here.

Journaling helps expose your hopes, fears, hesitations, excitements and miscellaneous thoughts on paper. Simply “detoxing” our minds through the written word can be a fantastic way to understand ourselves and move our mental road blocks aside. Sometimes the simple expression of thought through writing can be enough to rid them from our reality. After writing, rip it up and throw it away.

Hydration. There’s no simpler way to detox than drinking the appropriate amount of water. Depending on your body-type, activity level and environment you should be sipping anywhere from 6-10 cups of water/day.

Sleep. Rest is our most neglected path to health and rejuvenation. Are you sleeping during the hours that most help your body to reset? Ayurveda says that Pitta (the fire element of our constitution or metabolic capacity) is most active from the hours of 10pm-2am. If we don’t rest during this period we risk blowing out that fire. So get to bed! Commit to at least 7 hours of sleep/night and shift those hours to the earlier evening.

According to a 2007 NHIS survey, 83 million U.S. adults spent $33.9 billion on out-of-pocket visits to Complementary and Alternative Medicine practitioners and purchases(citation), each with a simple question in their hearts: How do I find health? As we’ve explored, the question is mosaicked in execution yet unified in its singular answer.

We must ask ourselves, outside our newly birthed health routines: Who am I? It is a question one we can only hope to answer through delving deeply, slowly, and quietly within ourselves. Allow for space, reflection, and solitude and our answers cannot help but surface under still waters.

Photo Credit: http://www.hgtv.com

About The Author
Emma Landau
Emma is a certified Ayurvedic Practitioner with over 1500 hours of training at the Ayurvedic Institute, the leading school for Ayurvedic medicine in the US. She holds a BSc from Cornell University, is a member of the National Ayurvedic Medicine Association and is a certified AyurYoga® instructor. By addressing the root cause of imbalances and disease through diet, lifestyle, herbs, yoga, meditation, and subtle energy therapies, clients are able to reconnect with their optimum health. Emma currently practices in Albuquerque, NM, and is available for distance consults via Skype, and facilitates classes and workshops on various topics.
For more information on services provided by Emma, please visit Hamsa Ayurveda.


One Thing We All Have In Common ...

One Thing We All Have In Common ... 
One thing we all have in common is that we all want to be happy. How we imagine our happiness may differ from one to another. Interestingly, our thoughts form our character and if we want to be happy in life, we must ensure that we keep our brain happy and healthy. When we are relaxed and happy, we exist in a state where our body is significantly different biologically than when we are tense, angry, and sad. Dr. Deepak Chopra in Quantum Healing states, “to think is to practice brain chemistry.” In other words, every thought releases brain chemicals and thinking positive, happy, and joyful thoughts decreases cortisol and produces serotonin which creates a sense of well-being. The ancient wisdom of Ayurveda teaches that anyone can achieve this state of inner wholeness, regardless of circumstances, by learning to balance all levels of life in accordance to natural principles; i.e. “mother nature”.

Want To Be Happy? Then Be Grateful. - David Steindl-Rast

Ojas - The Prescription For Bliss & Happiness!! 
Having strong Ojas helps maintain optimum health and many diet and lifestyle factors can contribute to either depleting or nourishing one’s Ojas. Ojas is defined as the pure essence of the bodily tissues. This is the refined by-product of digestion which can take up to 30 days to be created. Ojas is also referred to as the source of vitality, immunity and vigor in the body. The quality of Ojas is dependent on diet, lifestyle and stress. Possessing strong Ojas can determine how one’s body reacts to certain diseases and infections. Every tissue system in the body is said to have its own Ojas. Whilst all the physiological systems in the body are maintaining their function at optimum levels, Ojas is preserved. However during disease or infections the integrity of Ojas in the body can be compromised.

Blissful Joy
To help uplift the emotions; helps balance emotional ups and downs; alleviates sadness and feelings of frustration

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

It is important to maintain optimum health and thereby strong Ojas by a suitable diet and lifestyle.  There are some practical ways to increase Ojas and it is also vital to be aware of activities that can deplete this vital essence of the body.

Ways To Increase Ojas:
· Meditation
· Moderate yoga suited to one’s constitution
· Pranayama (breathing exercises)
· Consuming fresh wholesome and balanced meals appropriate to ones state of balance
· A daily morning practice incorporating walking in nature, nasal drops and oil massages
· Certain herbs such as Ashwagandha and Shatavari can help in promoting Ojas
· A restful and appropriate sleep is vital to building Ojas

Activities That Deplete Ojas:
· Excessive sexual activity
· Physical and psychological traumas
· Intense and excessive vigorous exercise
· Overexposure to bacteria, virus and parasites
· Diseases such as cancer, chronic asthma, osteoporosis, arthritis, ulcerative colitis, etc.
· Excessive stress and an intense work schedule
· Excessive consumption of foods that have preservatives and additives and other chemicals
· Overconsumption of incompatible foods for one’s constitution

Prana & Nasya = Health, Vitality & Happiness 
Nasya – The Pathway To Our Inner Pharmacy

Breathing is so natural yet we hardly ever think about it. Interestingly, seventy percent of waste is eliminated through the lungs just by breathing. In his book, Breathing: The Master Key To Self-Healing, Dr. Andrew Weil comments on the importance of breathing on our overall health. He states, “improper breathing is a common cause of ill health. If I had to limit my advice on healthier living to just one tip, it would be to simply learn how to breath correctly. There’s no single more powerful or more simple daily practice to further your health and well-being than breathwork.”

Respiratory Health – Breathe Easier All Season Long!!

Similarly, Ayurveda, explains that “prana” – the vital life force, enters the body primarily through the breath, via the nose which provides the flow of intelligence from one cell to another; i.e. cellular intelligence. Even further, prana is also the subtle energy that flows in the body through various channels and is responsible for our vitality and dynamism [“chaitanym”]. When prana is optimal, an individual will be active, alert and attentive while being happy and cheerful.

Ayurveda - Oil Massage ["Snehan"] 
The ancient Sanskrit word “Sneha” means compassion and the word “Snehi” refers to a loving friend. Daily oil massage [snehan] implies making a person loving by unfolding the healing qualities innate to the human body. In fact, Charaka – the ancient scholar of Ayurveda states that if you really want to bring happiness and joy to a client, don’t try to discuss their problems but do an oil massage and all the problems will simply dissolve.

Moisturizing & Soothing Herbal Massage Oils
Personalize your daily massage with herbal massage oils. Formulated to balance specific skin and dosha types, our herbal massage oils not only lubricate but also purify the skin. They have a balancing effect on the mind and body; they promote the appearance of smooth, youthful skin; and they support vitality and healthy circulation.

Ayurveda - A Guide For Happiness
The ancient teachings of Ayurveda talks in-depth about the profound relationship of the mind’s influence upon the body. These very teachings are thought to reflect the long-lived traditions and principles for upholding a healthy body and sound mind.

Factors Which Increase Ojas:
– wholesome food and healthy digestion
– love and compassion
– being positive and having self-control
– respect towards others and oneself
– cleanliness and simplicity
– selfless service [i.e. charity]

Ancient teachings of many cultures have always discussed the dynamic relationship between thoughts and feelings and its effects upon the body. Let the ancient inner laughter which resides deep within you guide you into a state of perfect health and happiness.

Easy Considerations …
For Health & Happiness

Diet:

  • Drinking a cup of hot water with 1 tsp of honey and 10 drops of apple cider vinegar is a wonderful way to start the day. Honey and apple cider vinegar have scraping effects and can help with reducing excess adipose tissue.
  • Eliminating alcohol, caffeine and smoking. There is abundant information on how many negative effects these substances induce in the body. They can alter the digestive fire and create cravings for unhealthy foods.
  • Reducing dairy and meats from the diet. These foods are heavy, gross and can lead to slow, sluggish digestion which will increase the same qualities in the body. Therefore one will have excess heaviness, lethargy and poor metabolism with overconsumption of these foods.
  • Consume the largest meal at lunch – when digestion is strongest and keep dinner a simple and light meal.
  • Incorporate ginger pickles and teas in the diet. Ginger is an effective herb for stimulating digestion and removing toxins from the body. It will also help to increase metabolism.
  • Reducing the cold element in the diet and incorporating more hot meals will also bring changes to health.
  • Fresh vegetables such as beets, broccoli, cabbage, carrots, celery, leafy greens, onions, garlic, peppers and sprouts will help increase the light element in the body. Fruits to favor include; berries, apples, pears, pomegranate, raisins, lemons, prunes and apricots. Generally heavier and sweet fruit and vegetables such as potatoes, cucumber, zucchini, bananas, coconuts, avocados, oranges, grapes and pineapples are best avoided.
  • In some cases, a 24 hour kichadi or water fast can be beneficial. Fasting in an appropriate manner and under the care of a physician/practitioner, can bring tremendous health benefits. It can reset the body and help one get onto the right track.

Rejuvenation For Men
Helps the body resist the effects of aging, correcting imbalances and repairing damaged cells; supports natural immunity; aids cellular regeneration.

Rejuvenation For Ladies
Supports emotional and hormonal balance; helpful during the years before menopause; promotes overall health.

Lifestyle:

  • Exercise is an important part of life. It increases metabolism and burns fat and also brings balance as well as mental clarity. The health benefits of yoga are vast. Taking up a daily yoga practice along with breathing exercises (pranayama) is an effective way for maintaining a healthy body weight.
  • At the very least, a 20 minute brisk walk should be incorporated into a morning daily routine. This will move lymph and reduce adipose tissue.
  • Napping during the day will increase the qualities that lead to weight gain; heavy, slow, dull, oily, gross and soft. It is best to obtain a good night’s sleep and to establish regular arising and sleeping times to set the body into a healthy routine.
  • Meditation and self – love. It is important to nurture one-self and to develop love and acceptance, as negative emotions can offset emotional hunger and depression. Meditation brings peace and harmony into life, therefore a daily 20 minute practice is recommended to bring overall awareness and balance. The many health benefits of meditation and positive affirmations are extensive. It is recommended to be forgiving of one-self and to eliminate the aspect of emotional guilt leading to acceptance, love and peace.

Herbs:

  • Herbs such as kutki, chitrak, trikatu and shilajit are extremely efficient in targeting fatty tissues and increasing the digestive capacity of the bodily tissues amongst many other benefits. Taking these herbs under a practitioners guidance will increase metabolism, scrape excess fat, control hunger and improve liver function.
  • Drinking triphala at night will also promote healthy bowel movements and cleansing of the colon as well as bringing balance to all the elemental properties in the body.

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

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.

 


Nasya - The Pathway To Our Inner Pharmacy

 

Nasya - The Pathway To Our Inner Pharmacy
Breathing is so natural yet we hardly ever think about it. Interestingly, seventy percent of waste is eliminated through the lungs just by breathing. In his book, Breathing: The Master Key To Self-Healing, Dr. Andrew Weil comments on the importance of breathing on our overall health. He states, “improper breathing is a common cause of ill health. If I had to limit my advice on healthier living to just one tip, it would be to simply learn how to breath correctly. There’s no single more powerful or more simple daily practice to further your health and well-being than breathwork.”

“The nose is the door to consciousness and the pathway to our inner pharmacy.”
- Dr. Vasant Lad, Ayurvedic Physician

Similarly, Ayurveda, explains that “prana” - the vital life force, enters the body primarily through the breath, via the nose which provides the flow of intelligence from one cell to another; i.e. cellular intelligence. Even further, prana is also the subtle energy that flows in the body through various channels and is responsible for our vitality and dynamism [“chaitanym”]. When prana is optimal, an individual will be active, alert and attentive while being happy and cheerful.

Ayurvedic Treatment Of Nasya - Dr. Sandeep Madaan, M.D. Ayurveda 

Nasya - Nasal Administration Of Medicated Oils 
The air we breathe has all kinds of stuff in it - from oxygen to dust, pollution, allergens, bacteria, viruses, mold, and countless other things. Essentially, the nose helps clean the air we breathe and healthy breathing, free of congestion, is important to ensure proper entry and flow of prana into the body. For example, disturbed flow of prana due to the accumulation of “kapha” [phlegm, mucous] can manifest as certain conditions such as sinus congestion, migraine headaches, certain eye or ear disorders, and if severe - may even cause seizures. Therefore, nasya, the nasal administration of herbally infused oils helps to protect the nasal passage while facilitating the cleansing process by removing excess doshas [i.e. bodily humors] and by relieving sinus congestion.

Protection Plus Sinuses
Soothes irritated sinuses and helps clear mucus; maintains a healthy immune system against pollutants and irritants.

Respiratory Health - Breathe Easier All Season Long!!

3 Easy Steps:
Nasya should be performed with the guidance of a qualified Ayurvedic professional. Ideally, nasya should be done on an empty stomach.

1. Lie down with head tilted back.
2. Place five drops of nasya oil in each nostril.
3. Sniff deeply and remain lying for about one minute.

Organic Clear & Soothe Nasal Spray
Natural Nasal Spray — soothes dry, irritated sinuses; shields nasal passages from airborne irritants and germs.

Five General Types Of Nasya
This description is merely to briefly explain the five general types of nasya and is not, by any means, comprehensive. Therefore, always seek the guidance and supervision of a trained qualified Ayurvedic professional before attempting to perform nasya.

Virechana Nasya: this cleansing action is performed often with dry powdered herbs [i.e. calamus, brahmi, jatamamsi] which are recommended for certain conditions such as sinus congestion, headaches, hoarseness of voice, etc.

Bruhana Nasya: this is a nourishing and nutritional nasya and is especially good for vata conditions and conditions of depletion; i.e. dryness in voice, dry sinuses, fear and anxiety, drooping eyes, etc. Common substances used are plain ghee, shatavari ghee, bala ghee, ashwagandha ghee, medicated milk, cucumber juice, and various other medicated oils.

Shamana Nasya: is a balancing nasya often helpful in chronic pitta and inflammatory conditions along with hair loss, dandruff, or even ringing of the ears. Common substances include brahmi ghee and/or tikta ghrita [“bitter ghee”] for pitta conditions. medicated vacha preparations for vata and/or kapha conditions.

Navana Nasya: this is a lubricating nasya often used for either “pitta-vata” conditions or “pitta-kapha” conditions.

Marshya Nasya: this type of lubrication involves using the little finger which has been dipped into a small amount of medicated ghee and gently inserted into the nostril.

General Indications For Nasya:

  • stiffness or pain in head, neck, shoulders or jaw
  • general headaches and migraine headaches
  • sinus pain and sinus congestion
  • dry nasal passages
  • toothache, loose teeth, and receding gums
  • hoarse voice
  • emotional stress
  • sleep disorders

 

Signs Of Properly Performed Nasya
When nasya is performed properly, you will notice release of tension in your neck and both your nose and throat will feel well lubricated. Likewise, your throat will feel clear and melodious, free of excess phlegm. Finally, you will notice a sense of lightness and clarity to your mind and properly performed nasya will promote sound and restful sleep.

Want More Vitality?
Amrit Kalash 
Full-spectrum antioxidant: targets mind & nervous system

 

Vitality - Taking Care Of Your Life-Force
Breath is essential to life. This demonstrates firsthand how the breath is directly connected to the mind. It’s the first thing we do when we are born and the last thing we do when we leave. The mind, body, and breath are intimately connected and directly influence each other. Our breathing is influenced by our thoughts, and our thoughts and physiology can be influenced by our breath. The ascetic yogis have known for centuries that the breath has amazing recuperative and rejuvenating powers. By controlling the breath, the yogis were able to alter their state of mind – rather, they were able to directly perceive the various “koshas” which create our state of being. For example, Nadi Shodhana, or “alternate nostril breathing,” is a simple yet powerful technique that helps settle the mind, body, and emotions. Nadi shodhana is particularly helpful to ease racing thoughts especially if you’re experiencing anxiety, stress, or having trouble falling asleep.

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.

Resource:
- Textbook Of Ayurveda: General Principles Of Management And Treatment; Vasant Lad, M.A.Sc
The Ayurvedic Press. Albuquerque, New Mexico


The Ayurveda Guide For Winter Season

The Ayurveda Guide For Winter Season
Winter is a time when nature’s energy withdraws back unto herself as nature’s many expressions begin to slow down. According to Ayurveda, a person is a miniature reflection of nature and winter represents a time for much needed restoration. Every season has certain attributes which may cause aggravation and imbalances of doshas. For example, winter is generally considered a “kapha season”. Therefore, colds and other kapha conditions [i.e. congestion] are more common as the heavy, cold, and cohesive qualities of kapha are predominant. However, a balanced lifestyle in accordance to seasonal changes helps to create the needed elements in order to maintain health and well-being for the body and mind.

Winter Tips - How To Stay Balanced & Healthy During The Winter Season

The Winter Routine

Waking Up
Generally, Ayurveda recommends waking up early before sunrise when pure [“Sattvic”] qualities of nature bring about a sense of peace and freshness to the mind. However, sleeping in later [i.e. 7am] during winter is also considered acceptable.

Evacuation
Paraphrasing a famous Ayurvedic Physician [Dr. Vasant Lad], “there is nothing more healthy than waking up to the call of duty”. Although it is common to sit on the toilet while having a bowel movement, it is more ideal to squat. If you are unable to evacuate your bowels you may want to consider sipping a glass of warm water as this helps to stimulate mass peristalsis and also helps to flush the kidneys.

Copper Cup
A real ayurveda classic. Fill the cup with water in the evening, leave it to stand overnight and drink the water the next morning. In ayurveda this water is particularly highly regarded because it is said to have a purifying as well as a balancing influence on Pitta dosha. From a scientific point of view, the water has absorbed pure copper, which in this form is an essential mineral for the body.

Scrape Your Tongue
By gently scraping the tongue, from back to front, this helps to remove dead bacteria from the tongue, stimulate the visceral organs, and further helps to aid digestion. This is especially helpful if there was improper digestion of the previous night’s meal.

Silver Tongue Cleaner 
A traditional Sterling Silver Tongue Cleaner will help whisk away bacteria and impurities found on your tongue in the morning. Rinse, and your mouth and tongue will feel fresh and clean.

Brush Your Teeth
Using a soft toothbrush, brush your teeth using toothpaste made from heating herbs such as cinnamon or cloves. These heating herbs help to protect the teeth from sensitivity to cold.

Ayurdent Toothpaste
For healthy teeth and gums. Natural, holistic Ayurdent Toothpaste cleanses deeply to rid your teeth and mouth of toxins. Supports and nourishes teeth and gums. Does not contain sodium lauryl sulfate.

Swishing Oil In The Mouth
Next, consider holding some warm sesame oil in the mouth for two or three minutes. This helps to strengthen your teeth and gums, and also thought to be beneficial for improving the clarity of the voice. After holding the oil in the mouth, swish the oil around the mouth and finally before spitting out the oil, gently massage your gums with the oil using your index finger. Also, make sure not to swallow any of this oil.

Oil Massage - Abhyanga
Massage yourself with warm organic sesame oil. Sesame is warming and is generally considered beneficial to every body type for this time of year. Massaging oil on the body is a great way to keep the skin soft, supple and wrinkle free. It is a rejuvenating technique that improves circulation and, when done at night, induces sleep.

Organic Sesame Oil
Enhance immunity and experience a sense of well-being. Our pure golden Sesame Oil is organic, extra-light, chemical-free and cold-pressed, allowing its chemical composition to penetrate the deeper layers of the skin.

“Give yourself a full-body oil massage on a daily basis. It is nourishing; pacifies the doshas; relieves fatigue; provides stamina, pleasure and perfect sleep; enhances the complexion and the luster of skin; promotes longevity; and nourishes all parts of the body.”
– Ancient Wisdom Of Ayurveda

Warm Shower
Have a nice warm shower and rub off the oil from your skin. Showering will naturally brings about freshness to the body, clarity to the mind, and holiness to your life.

Citronella Herbal SoapKapha Balancing Soap
This light and fresh bar cleanses deeply while balancing soft and smooth Kapha skin. The special blend of ayurvedic herbs — flame-of-the-forest, mesua, turmeric and lemony citronella — will refresh your skin. For normal to oily skin.

Dressing & Perfumes
Wearing clean clothes after bathing brings about beauty and virtue. Likewise, using natural scents or perfumes [i.e. essential oils] helps to enhance the refreshing sense of joy and charm to life.

Stimulating Kapha Aroma Oil
Therapeutic aroma oils are precise blends of 100% pure essential oils — diffuse them through lockets or diffusers, combine 5-10 drops per 2 oz. of your base massage oil, or add a few drops to your bathwater for a fragrant healing experience you’ll cherish long after you've left the bath.

Yoga & Pranayama
Yoga or other forms of light exercise will help to invigorate the body with life-energy [i.e. “prana”] and help to clear excess mucous, lethargy, and sluggishness common to both kapha conditions and winter season.

Pranayama
Classical yogic texts describe prana as the energy of the universe and because it permeates everything in the universe it is considered the breath of life. Therefore, pranayama is ‘yogic breathing’ and consists of breathing exercises specifically designed to meet the needs of our body and to keep our body in perfect health.

Nasya
After completing pranayama, it is of benefit to apply nasya oil in the nose. The herbs in nasya can help to dissolve excess kapha [i.e. mucous] from the chest and head, especially beneficial during winter season.

Organic Clear & Soothe Nasal Spray
Natural Nasal Spray — soothes dry, irritated sinuses; shields nasal passages from airborne irritants and germs

Traditional ayurvedic herbal oil

  • balances & lubricates dry or irritated sinuses
  • protects against environmental pollutants & other airborne irritants
  • vata, pitta, kapha balancing (vpk®)

Winter Foods To Consider
Generally, the food we eat during winter season should be warming, nourishing, and mildly spicy. Likewise, we should avoid cold food and flavors which are excessively sweet, sour, or salty as these are all considered “kapha provoking” and will therefore further increase congestion.

Breakfast
Warm and nourishing breakfast many consist of a small bowl of porridge, oatmeal, cornmeal, barley soup, or kitchari.

Amrit Kalash Ambrosia
Amrit Kalash in the morning is great to help keep your energy and immunity intact and is especially beneficial during winter season. Amrit Kalash is a 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
  • best taken with Amrit Nectar
  • vata, pitta, kapha balancing (vpk®)

Amrit Kalash

Tea
About an hour after breakfast, consider sipping on kapha tea which contains ginger, cloves, cardamom, turmeric, saffron, and black pepper - all help to improve digestion and help to eliminate mucus from the body.

Organic Stimulating Tea
The perfect answer when you’re feeling sluggish or heavy — spicy tea

Lunch
Lunch is to be eaten around noon as hunger will naturally occur. Lunch should be nourishing and wholesome such as steamed vegetables, warm soups, bread and delicious ghee. It’s best to avoid meals which are cold as this will impair the digestive fire “agni”. To improve digestion, we can add certain spices such as cinnamon, cloves, and black pepper.

Stimulating Spice Mix
Our ready-to-use spice mixtures satisfy the six ayurvedic tastes considered essential for balance. Organic Stimulating Kapha Churna includes ginger, coriander and turmeric.

Dinner
It’s best to avoid having dinner too late and 5-7pm is often ideal. Again, dinner should be warm and nourishing while avoiding excessive sweet, sour or salty tastes; as these flavors increase kapha dosha.

Dinner Drink
Ayurveda suggest that it may be beneficial to occasionally have a glass of dry and warming wine during the winter season as this will encourage circulation and help to stimulate digestion.

Bedtime
As the winter nights get darker earlier, it’s wise to go to bed earlier. Before heading off to bed you may want to consider a delicious cup of hot spicy milk. Spices such as nutmeg are calming and help to promote sound sleep.

Blissful Sleep
Natural sleep aid for falling asleep faster and enjoying deeper, more refreshing sleep; balances, and nourishes.

Deep Rest
To support sleeping through the night; helps in falling asleep more easily, and in returning to sleep when awakened.

 

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.