The Three Pillars Of Good Health ~ An Ayurvedic Perspective

The Three Pillars Of Good Health 
There is nothing as important in life in making a radical change within the body, mind, and consciousness than establishing a healthy routine in daily life. Ayurveda is a science of good health. Its first objective is to preserve health of the healthy individual. Charaka [the founder of ayurvedic medicine] has summed up beautifully the whole technique of how to promote a healthy lifestyle in two lines.

“Nityam hitahara-vihara-sevi samikshyakari vishayeshvasaktah
Data samah satyaparah kshamavan aptopasevi cha bhavati arogah”
- Charaka Samhita

Translation:
A person who practices regularly a wholesome lifestyle, eats wholesome food, is deliberate in all his actions, not involved in the objects of the mind [i.e. overindulgence in sense pleasures], who is generous, just, truthful, forgiving in nature, who is service-minded and helpful to one's own kin - will remain unaffected by disease.

 

The Three Pillars Of Positive Health:
The ancient seers of Ayurveda understood the importance of wholesome [sattvic] lifestyle and its importance to health and overall well-being. Likewise, when lifestyle is not in accordance to the natural principles then this, too, is considered to be the root cause of disease and the aging process. Ayurveda has explained the three pillars to positive health as follows:

- Food [ahara]
- Sleep [nidra]
- Regulated lifestyle [brahmacharya]

 

1. Food [ahara]:
Ayurveda reveres food as providing nourishment to the physical, emotional and spiritual aspects of human life. This being of such vital importance that vedic culture explains that one’s own kitchen should be as clean and pure as a sacred temple. Even further, it’s not only the food which one eats that determines the subtlties of health but more importantly the manner in which one eats. For instance, food is considered to be so sacred that when one eats, one is not only feeding oneself but rather feeding the God within. Therefore, when eating one should simply eat, free of all distractions.

Herbal Digest
Proper digestion and metabolism, on the other hand, results in the conversion of the foods you eat into healthy body tissues. Herbal Di-Gest is a blend of 10 ayurvedic herbs and spices that promotes healthy assimilation and elimination, so you won’t feel dull and heavy after meals.

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

“That is why eating the right food at the appropriate time, in the proper environment, and with great love and respect will not only nourish the body, but also the mind and soul.” - Dr. Vasant Lad, Ayurvedic Physician 

2. Sleep [Nidra]:
To live peacefully it’s important to rest peacefully and nothing provides as much rest and peace than sleep [and meditation]. Therefore, cultivating a routine to help promote sound sleep is another pillar of positive health according to the science of ayurveda. It’s interesting that yoga [a sister science of ayurveda] describes “yoga nidra” [or “yogic sleep”] as a sleep-like state as being among the deepest possible states of relaxation while still maintaining full consciousness. Even scientific investigations have revealed the benefits of Yoga Nidra. In 2006, Kamakhya Kumar was awarded a PhD for his work "Psycho-physiological Changes as Related to Yoga Nidra". Therefore, for a sound body and sound mind - one needs 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

 

3. Regulated lifestyle [Brahmacharya]:
Brahmacharya is normally understood as maintaining celibacy. In reality, brahmacharya is a form of regulated lifestyle with a [healthy] balance towards sex. Abnormal sexual practices, overindulgence of sex, and sexual frustrations are thought to be the cause of many diseases which fall under the category of “asatmyendriyartha samyoga” [overindulgence and wrongful use of the sense organs]. This also implies that frequent sexual activities can deplete “ojas” [vital-life nourishment] and can even make one weak and susceptible to disease. Therefore, one should consider replenishing ojas after sexual activity by considering having a gentle massage and drinking something nourishing such as almond milk or ashvagandha milk.

Amrit Kalash 
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

 

Parting Message: 
In essence, Ayurvedic lifestyle recommendations are simple and elegant yet powerfully effective in helping one to establish and maintain balance. In fact, health is a state of perfect balance. Ayurveda says that there is an integrative relationship between the body and mind.  Ayurveda goes on to say that when the influences of the body and mind are balanced then one will begin to experience the sense of bliss and only then is one thought to be in good health. Therefore, be balanced, be happy and be healthy.


10 Simple Considerations For Optimal Digestion

DIGESTION ~ THE CORNERSTONE OF HEALTH
According to ayurveda, digestion is the cornerstone of health. Even further, ayurveda has long recognized the importance of environment to one's health and goes on to explain that what you see, hear, taste, smell, feel and think are all important for your overall well-being and health. Interestingly, it has been estimated that nearly 6 million people in the U.S. experience indigestion annually. Indigestion, heaviness in the body, retention of flatus and constipation, and/or loose bowel movements are the common signs and symptoms of indigestion [ajirna], as described in the classical texts. Below are simple considerations to help improve one's digestion, overall health and well-being.

10 Simple Considerations For Optimal Digestion
1. Eat wholesome food.
2. Eat your meals at regular times.
3.  Do not rush meals.
4.  Appreciate your meals [i.e. the smell, taste, feel and appearance of the food].
5.  Chew your food properly.
6.  Start your meals with an appetizer like soup and end it with a sweet dish [i.e. payasam].
7. Avoid too much liquids just before and during meals.
8. Eat food with a pleasant and positive mind.
9. Consider eating while sitting in a cross-legged position [i.e. sukhasana pose].
10. Walk a few steps after finishing the meal.

*Special gratitude to Dr. A. Rangaprasad Bhat [Ayurvedic Physician]
For the insightful contributions to the above considerations.

Advice From The Experts:
I asked several highly respected individuals in the field of Ayurveda, what are some basic considerations to help improve digestion and this is what they had to say …

"Gratitude and blessings for ancestors, meal contributors and self before mindfully partaking meal."
- Sharon Kapp, Ayurvedic Professional 

"Fill half of the stomach with food, a quarter with water & leave the rest (1/4) empty so that the food can properly 'cook' and be digested."
- Anupama Butani, Ayurvedic Professional 

"Ajeerna [indigestion] is a disturbed agni [digestive] condition so any lifestyle behavior pattern or food/herb(including spices) that improves agni and burns ama will be therapeutic."
- Dr. Bill Dean, Medical Doctor and Ayurvedic Professional 

"Mental attitude plays big role in digestion. Eating is one of the necessities for a happy, healthy and long life. The other main thing is we should eat food according to the right combination of dosha type and spices along with the right mental attitude. Therefore, keep calm before eating."
- Chanchal Khosla, Ayurvedic Professional 

"Consider regular exercise, yoga asanas, and walking to help stoke the agni fire. Likewise, skip unhealthy snacks and take up the habit of drinking warm water - warm water helps to dispels gas."
- Sanghee Chon Davidson, Ayurvedic Professional 

"Eat with gratitude, enjoy your food. Eat with people you love. Eat clean tasty food. Eat in a clean nice atmosphere. Savor the moment."
- Chitra Eder Turley, Ayurvedic Professional 

"Silently say, "thank you" or "OM" to imbue your food with even more prana. Likewise, consider teas such as fennel tea, lemon/ginger/honey teas and/or lassis to help improve digestion. Lastly, eat in a peaceful environment."
- Mary Bruck, Ayurvedic Professional 


Disclaimer:

Educational Purpose Only. Not Medical Advice. 

 


Mental Health ~ An Ayurvedic Perspective

MENTAL HEALTH  ~ AN AYURVEDIC PERSPECTIVE
According to the National Institute of Mental Health [NIH], major depression is one of the most common mental disorders in the United States. Depression affects more than 10 million Americans each year. It is so common in our society that it is estimated that one in 9 people will be diagnosed with it at one point in their life.

Digestion and Feelings ~ An Ayurvedic Perspective - "Gut Health" 
According to Ayurveda, healthy Agni (digestive fire) creates an overall sense of happiness and joy. When the Agni is suppressed, there is grief, sadness and depression. Interestingly, there are a large number of clinical studies correlating “gut health” to overall wellness, including the effects on mood. Even further, it has been estimated that there are between 400 to 600 million nuerons in your gut. The enteric nervous system uses more than 30 neurotransmitters, just like the brain, and in fact 95 percent of the body's serotonin is found in the gut.

Healthy Lifestyle:
Ayurveda stresses the importance of a healthy lifestyle. Once you get into the habit of maintaining a healthy routine, you will be able to see, feel, and experience the benefits of a healthy lifestyle.

6 Simple Tips For Mental Wellness:
1. Obseve nature. Wake up early and watch the morning sun rise.
2. Bring life into the body. Therefore eat fresh and wholesome food.
3. Revitalize the body and mind with regular yoga practice and breathing techniques.
4. Reflect upon your feelings and emotions. Therefore, be still and meditate.
5.  Cultivate meaningful relationships with people whom you trust.
6. Love yourself, you deserve it.

Interesting Thoughts From Ayurvedic Professionals:
I asked several highly respected individuals in the field of Ayurveda, how to develop wellness of the mind in daily life and this is what they had to say …

“At a very basic level, if our vital life-force energy is stuck or not moving properly then this can affect our overall health. Prana comes into the body and mind in the form of food, water, breath, sensory impressions. For overall mental health, one may want to consider shirodhara with or without PK, pranayama, wholesome associations with people, and proper sleep.”
- Mary Bruck, Ayurvedic Professional  

“Agni governs secretions of neurotransmitters which becomes understanding. The understanding is a higher cerebral activity & comes from healthy Sadhaka pitta. If Sadhaka Agni is low, the result can be chemical depression.” [reflecting upon Dr. Vasant Lad’s teachings]
- Anupama Butani, Ayurvedic Professional

“The under and overutilization of the sensory organs, objects of perception, and the mind can be thought of as the root causes of disease according to ayurvedic principles. Regarding the senses, consider instrumental music and madhura rasa [sweet taste] as it enlightens the mind. Also consider chanson [sandalwood], jasmine, rose, etc. as these pleasant smells bring replenishment to the mind.
- Dr. A. Rangaprasad Bhat, Ayurvedic Physician

"Regarding the senses, the beach/ocean is an excellent healing place. It's got all that for the senses. Back in the day, Drs would send patients to the seaside to recover from all sorts of maladies."
- Linda Rowe, Ayurvedic Professional

Disclaimer:
Educational Purpose Only. Not Medical Advice.
For medical advice always seek consultation from your primary care physician.


An Ayurvedic Perspective ~ Developing A Sattvic Mind

SATTVIC MIND ~ EXCELLENCE OF THE MIND:
Individuals having the excellence of mental faculties are characterized by good memory, devotion, gratefulness, wisdom, purity, excessive enthusiasm, skill, courage, valor in fighting, absence of sorrow, proper gait, depth of wisdom and sincerity in actions and virtuous acts.
- C.S. Vimanasthana Ch. VIII Sutra. 110

According to ayurveda, a “sattvic” [pure] lifestyle is the best way to develop strength, clarity of the mind, good health and longevity. Sattvic qualities of the mind are considered to be clarity of the mind, understanding, and compassion. Sattvic foods are those foods which nourish the body and calm the mind. When both the body and mind are balanced only then can one truly appreciate joy and happiness.

Basic Sattvic Considerations:
- develop more awareness especially while eating
- eat more fresh fruit and vegetables
- consider ripe pleasant tasting nuts and seeds
- introduce more sprouted whole grains
- eat meals which balance all 6 tastes
- drink plentiful natural spring water

Other Sattvic Considerations:
- prayer and self-reflection
- yoga and meditation
- breathing techniques
- spending time alone in nature
- studying holy scriptures
- being in good company of others


Be Aware:

The take home message is to simply become more aware. It is important not to compare oneself to another but rather learn to love and accept oneself. Ayurveda is a science to help each individual find a state of perfect balance, happiness, and a blissful state of being.

I asked several highly respected individuals in the field of Ayurveda, how to develop more sattvic qualities and this is what they had to say …

“Keep a regular routine.”
- Lissa Coffey, Author, Ayurveda Professional

“Yoga emphasizes the study of the mind and the clarity of thought and action. Therefore, following Ashtanga Yoga, 8-limb path is highly recommended to adapt these principles and integrate these practices in order to cultivate a more sattvic mind.”
- Karen Khazzam Dubi, Ayurvedic Professional/Yoga Teacher

“Develop a systematic and slow practice of behavioral patterns. Adopting modest behaviors while disassociating from immodest gunas of mind. Be in company of politely speaking, self-integrity persons. Follow the path of truth and love. Feel your innate presence in others soul through the practice of So aham [meditation]. Think positive. Stay positive.”
- Dr. A. Rangaprasad Bhat, Ayurvedic Physician

“Dincharya: regular sleep times, wake up before sunrise, sleep by 10 pm. Pranayama! Daily meditation of sitting quietly, watching the breath or becoming present in the moment. Connecting with nature through dincharya: regularity of food, sleep & lifestyle.”
- Anupama Butani, Ayurvedic Professional

“Development of the sattwic mind can be approached through any of the 18 Vedic disciplines as well as any of the 4 yogas and as well as  any other spiritual path”
- Chitra Eder Turley, Ayurvedic Professional

“Mental sattwa can be enhanced through certain surroundings such as nature, having close associations with animals/pets, the elderly and infants, then a sort of alchemy happens. Likewise, one can mimic this and become uplifted through good company ... this is one way amongst many other, like good fresh vegetarian food and fresh air”
- Sohini Mimi Striuli, Ayurvedic Professional/ Yoga Teacher

“Developing a Sattvic mind will include a more Sattvic diet, Pranayama, studying of Holy scriptures (accordingly to one's suitability), and having a good Satsanga of good people.”
- Yossi Joe Nazar, Ayurvedic Professional

“To achieve a sattvic state of mind one should respect oneself, others and the environment in life. This may occur by pursuing in his daily life an ethical, social, moral and physical pure attitude and behavior . By trusting your intuition much more than thinking controlled by the ego is the gateway to a sattvic mind in life. A sattvic mind starts in your heart.”
- Gerry Van de Moortel, Ayurvedic Professional


Ayurvedic Perspective ~ 5 Cool Ways To Stay Cool This Summer

Ayurvedic Perspective ~ 5 Cool Ways To Stay Cool This Summer
Summer is 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.

5 Cool Ways To Stay Cool This Summer 
1. Drink cooling herbal teas such as cumin, coriander, and fennel tea.
2. Eat cooling and more easily digestable 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

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.

Practical Tips From The Experts: 
I asked several highly respected individuals in the field of Ayurveda,
how to keep cool during summer and this is what they had to say ...

“Stay calm and eat lighter meals. Rose water - keep a spray bottle with you at all times. Practice asana and pranayama (shitali). Drink coconut water.”
- Edie Berman, Ayurveda Professional

“Sheetali  [cooling breathe] Pranayam, forward bends, and keeping Vata in balance as well is very important.”
- Yossi Joe Nazar, Ayurveda Professional

“Coconut water, cucumber water, water with rose water + stevia, aloe juice, mint water, coriander or mint tea or fennel tea, mint water infused cotton pads over the eyes, coconut oil abhyanga, shirodhara with coconut oil or coconut milk, coriander or fennel or dill on food, rose jam, coconut milk based rice pudding, fresh sweet fruits especially berries, steamed greens with lime juice, and some fresh salad with lots of cucumbers."
- Mary Bruck, Owner of 'Vibrant Health Ayurveda and Yoga'

“Drink plenty of liquids. Wear a cap over the head when moving under direct sunlight. Cotton clothes with loose fitting helps in aerating the body. Bodily heat can be addressed by the intake of milk at bed time; tender coconut water; eating raw cucumber slices; lime juice with sugar to address heat; lime juice with salt to address electrolyte imbalance.”
- Dr. A Rangaprasad Bhat

“Take more rest and keep out of the sun.”
- Gerry Van de Moortel, Ayurveda Professional

“Stay cool in the mind: Make a simple paste of brahmi, and sandalwood powder with rose water and apply to the forehead. Then enjoy meditating in the predawn through sunrise or while bathing in the light of the full moon. Deliciously cooling, sattvic, and uplifting.”
- Heather W. Baines, Ayurveda Professional, 'Roots of Wellness Ayurveda'

“I recommend regular practice of sheetali  [cooling breathe] pranayama practice, along with pitta pacifying diet of course. There's always coconut oil massage for your feet, head and Abhyanga. Drinking beverage with blue-colored glass.”
- Sanghee Chon Davidson, Ayurveda Professional

“Fan and proper air movement helps. I find that excessive air conditioning and control on indoor air creates the inability to harmonize with summer. Training the body to slowly manage the outdoor heat helps. The heat eventually doesn't feel so hot. Keep a fan with you while doing this.”
- Chitra Eder Turley, Ayurveda Professional

“Coconut water intake. Avoid the sun but not nature. Cooled buttermilk (homemade fresh) with mint, cilantro, salt, little ground roasted cumin! (Yum).  Avoid spicy hot foods. Take more sweet, astringent, and bitter foods!”
- Anupama Butani, Ayurveda Professional

“Chandra seva... Basking in the cooling light of the moon while drinking a cooling beverage like coconut water and wearing white cotton clothes.”
- Lakshmi Devi Costello, Ayurveda Professional; Lifestyle Consultant

“Put hanna under your feet. Ayurvedic preparations made from henna cool the body during the heat of summer. If a few sprays of these exquisitely scented flowers are placed underneath the pillow at night, the heat will be removed from the body.”
- Chanchal Khosla, Ayurveda Professional

 


Top Blogs From Ayurveda & Yoga Professionals

WHAT IS AYURVEDA?
Ayurveda is a holistic science that takes into consideration the whole person. According to the teachings of Ayurveda, every aspect of life contributes to our overall health. Healthy Ayurveda strives to provide knowledge on how to maintain a healthy balance in the most unique and personalized way. Our mission is simple, to make healthy living the new standard.

TOP BLOGS FROM AYURVEDA & YOGA PROFESSIONALS:
I have asked several highly respected individuals in the field of Ayurveda to post below, in the comment section, a link to their personal blogs. Here is what we came up with. Enjoy!


If You Could Give Just One Piece Of Advice ...

Health is a state of perfect balance. Āyurveda says that there is an integrative relationship between the body, mind, and consciousness. When the influences of the body, mind and senses are balanced and one begins to experience the sense of bliss and happiness only then is one thought to be in good health. I asked several highly respected individuals in the field of Āyurveda the following question, “If you could give just one piece of "ayurvedic" advice to the world, what would it be?”  The responses were intriguing ...


“Be happy and stay happy.”
- Sanjay Pisharodi, M.D., Owner at Purnarogya Holistic Health Care

 

“Know your 'sva' (your unique blue print), agni (transformative principle in the body) and the power of prana and manas (mind) - live a full vibrant healthy life.”
- Pratibha Shah, B.A.M.S., Founder of 'Council For Ayurveda Research'

 

“Pause in the day to breathe deeply. Few who are chronically ill have a relationship to the ability of breath to relax and reset from daily stressors.
- SiriChand Khalsa,  M.D., Chief Luminary at Luminous Foods

 

“Our bodies, our inner nature is a mirror of the outer Nature. At noon time when the sun is highest in the sky is when our Agni, our digestive fire is at its peak. This is the time to eat the largest meal of the day.”
- Lakshmi Devi Costello, Ayurvedic Practitioner, Lifestyle Consultant

 

“Regulate your eating and sleeping times. the single best action to pacify all 3 doshas, improve digestion, facilitate proper elimination, calm the mind, improve sleep, lose weight, make better choices, build body awareness....”
- Amy Lewis, Ayurvedic Consultant

 

“Aahara (Diet) and Vihaara (Lifestyle) are the base for living happy as per Ayurveda.”
- Dr. Satya Prasad, Former Principal of Ayurvedic Medical College

 

“Be Happy - eat food that makes you happy, be with people who make you happy, do work that makes you happy ... there is no health without happiness!”
- Sandra Nicht, Ayurvedic Counselor

 

“Include all six tastes in every meal; it is one of the easiest way to use food to balance the doshas.”
- Stephanie Danielson-Tan, Ayurvedic Consultant

 

“Know the essence of you so that you can make clear decisions on bringing in those things/foods/people that support you and balance you.”
- Mary Bruck; President and Owner at ‘Vibrant Health Ayurveda and Yoga’

 

“Before you recommend a treatment plan to anyone (including herbs, massage, oiling, detox, etc), determine the cause of the imbalance and remove it, or you will be forever treating symptoms. Removing the cause must ALWAYS be a part of the treatment.”
- David Freedman, Director at ‘The Center For Vedic Medicine’

 

“Always breath through your nose.”
- Larry Mangel, Yoga teacher, Ayurvedic Consultant

 

“It's all about digestion, you are what you digest, keep it optimum then everything will fall in place”
- Anjula Agrawal, Ayurvedic Practitioner

 

“Love your breath (Prana).”
- Heidi Nordlund, Ayurvedic Practitioner at 'Namaskar Healing'

 

“Know thyself.”
- Aparna Khanolkar, Private Chef and Ayurvedic Lifestyle Counselor

 

“Eat when you're hungry, sleep when you're tired, drink when you're thirsty and create when you are inspired.”
- Kael Balizer, Owner of ‘Life in Balance with Kael’

 

"Sarva dharmeshu madhyamam". Ayurveda highlights sadvritta, code of conduct for a peaceful & harmonious life. To be healthy Ayurveda emphasise on "prasanna atmeyeindriya mana swasta ityabhidhiyathe". Apart from physical parameters, mana & senses have to be clear. The three main causes of all sorts of miseries & diseases are said to be prajnaparadha, asatmeindriyartha samyoga, mithya- ahara viharas. So here analysing all the 3 causative factors, we can infer that manas play a prime role. In this present world manasa Vegas are to be controlled krodha, kama, lobha........ (Ref..ast hri-su, ch..su). Think before you act, in case of food habits or your moral conduct. This is the perfect way to be healthy.” 
- Dr. Aswathy Radha Nair

 

“Sarva Karmeshu Madhyamam ... follow a middle path."
- Karen Khazzam Dubi, Ashtanaga Yoga Teacher - Mysore Style

 

“Middle road living.”
- Sandra Radja, Owner at ‘The She Oak - Castlemaine Ayurveda’

 

Several Considerations ...
1. Follow a regular routine according to ritu(season) and desha(country).
2. Exercise regularly. I recommend Yoga and Meditation.
3. One should eat according to their dosha and Agni.
4. Always drink warm water, use cold water for head bath and hot water to take bath.”
- Vara Lakshmi, Ayurvedic Professional

 

“No ice water or [iced] drinks.”
- Joey Bujold, Ayurvedic Counselor

 

“Breathe before you eat.”
- Danielle Bertoia, Ayurvedic Practitioner

 

“Say a prayer to bless the food before eating.”
- Anupama Butani, Ayurvedic Practitioner, Reiki Practitioner. level 2

 

“The food you eat is either medicine or poison. Choose mindfully.”
- Sharon Kapp, Owner/CEO at ‘Houston Yoga & Ayurvedic Wellness Center’

 

“BE Yourself.”
- Karen Whynott, Spa Therapist, Chopra Center Vedic Master teaching Ayurveda

 

 

“Warm water can be so healing.”
- Jennifer Wahlquist Coolidge, Ayurvedic Counselor

 

“Live like nature.”
- Sohini Mimi Striuli, Ayurvedic Consultant, Kripalu Yoga Teacher

 

“Know yourself, love yourself.”
- Chara Caruthers, Owner of ‘BlissBody & Soul’

 

“According to our Ayurveda Texts "DESHA" Can be of both types to be saved with our Traditional system i.e. 'Deha Desha (Lokadeha-Body) & 'Bhumi Desha (Outside world)”
- Kumar Pardeep, Associate Professor of Ayurvedic Medicine

 

“Always listen to your body; pay close attention to what it is telling you!”
- Bill Courson, Ayurvedic Educator

 

"Follow the Ayurvedic clock. Eat your biggest meal in the middle of the day. Eat an earlier & lighter dinner.”
- Batool Yogima, Yoga Instructor, Ayurvedic Practitioner

 

“Dont eat: - in front of your computer; - while talking; -while walking; - while checking FB, email.”
- Shweta Parmar, Ayurvedic Practitioner, Therapist, AyurDoula

 

“Ayurveda is a lifestyle. It is not just a system of medicine. Hence manage your lifestyle effectively and stay healthy.”
- Nitin Chaube, CEO ‘Ayushya Varsha Health Care’

 

“Squat rather than sit when eliminating stools or urine. One of the best advices I think people can implement in life. and BREATHE!”
- Yossi Joe Nazar, Ayurvedic Consultant

 

“Spend your time in nature as often as you can!”
- Sanghee Chon Davidson, Ayurvedic Consultant

 

“Eat whole foods, lovingly prepared, with a great deal of awareness and appreciation.”
- Upasana Giglia, Ayurvedic Consultant

 

“Be mindful of the three pillars of health .... Diet, sleep and celibacy (translation for people in todays society ... Celibate when single monogamous when married).”
- Julie Heinzman, Ayurvedic Practitioner


Kapha ~ Basic Management

THE BASICS FOR MANAGING KAPHA TYPES:
When we think of kapha types we often think of loyal and compassionate individuals with a stable quality about them. This unique stability of kapha arises from the predominant elements of both water and earth which can also make kapha types vulnerable to cold, moist, slow and heavy characteristics. Therefore, management for kapha types is centered around:

  • Warming
  • Drying
  • Lightening

TASTES TO PACIFY KAPHA:
Ayurveda describes an interesting relationship of taste and its influence upon the body. According to this philosophy, kapha types often are most balanced by pungent, bitter, and astringent tastes as these tastes are considered to be drying and lightening in nature with catabolic actions.

KAPHA IN A NUTSHELL:
slow digestion, weight gain, congestion, edema, and poor circulation

SIMPLE CONSIDERATIONS:
Simple considerations for helping to balance kapha types:

  • Wake up early, be active and consider exercise daily
  • Avoid sedentary lifestyle and daytime sleeping
  • Avoid cold drinks and instead consider warm and spicy food and hot drinks
  • Eat fresh raw vegetables to help balance the oily nature of kapha
  • Consider drinking hot water mixed with small amounts of honey

KAPHA QUALITIES AND THIER MANIFESTATIONS:

  • heavy
  • dull
  • cool
  • oily

HEAVY:
Ayurveda helps to manage certain qualities simply by introducing the opposing quality in order to promote a state of balance. For example, the "heavy" quality of kapha can be balanced by the opposing "light" quality. Therefore, kapha types will naturally find benefit by eating smaller “lighter” meals and should even consider fasting at times.  Interestingly, kapha types will also benefit from honey and hot water as this helps to oppose the heavy quality of kapha and can even help to loose excess “heaviness” or weight from the body.

DULL:
I think we all have, at some time, experienced the dull and slow nature of the body. This dull quality can make one’s thinking sluggish and can even make the body feel like a ton of bricks. This dull nature of kapha combined with the heavy quality [described above] can makes one’s metabolism slow and dull often making kapha types vulnerable to weight gain. This “dull’ quality of kapha is often best managed with the opposing “sharp” quality. An easy example would include stimulants such as caffeine, however, more preferable considerations would include herbs such as kutki, chitrak, brahmī, and even guggulu.

COOL:
The cool quality of kapha comes from the predominating element of water. This can cause excess congestion, cough and colds for kapha types. Therefore, kapha types would benefit by introducing heating elements such as cumin, black pepper and ginger into their diet. Likewise, kapha types will do best by having more hot and spicy foods while avoiding food and drinks which are cold.

OILY:
Kapha, inherently, is considered oily and because of this oily quality it can lead to oily skin, high triglycerides, increased cholesterol, increased adipose tissue, and even fatty changes within the liver. It is best to balance this excessive oily quality with the opposing dry quality, for example, by eating raw vegetables. In the same manner, kapha types should naturally avoid fatty and fried foods. Lastly, kapha types benefit greatly by having warm water mixed with small amounts of honey.

Not Medical Advice. Strictly For Educational Purposes Only.

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The Fundamental Question ~ What is Ayurveda?

THE FUNDAMENTAL QUESTION ~ WHAT IS AYURVEDA?
Today we explore the fundamental question, what is Ayurveda? Perhaps many people would initially respond by saying Ayurveda is an ancient science of life. Others may stress the importance that Ayurveda is an eloquent way of explaining the natural qualities of nature and because these qualities of nature naturally do not change, the science of Ayurveda then is a science of antiquity; timeless.

This post is designed simply to introduce the concept of Ayurveda to the general public. Many of us have never heard about Ayurveda and if so, may have only just recently heard of it. I open this discussion so that leading experts in the field of Ayurveda can expand and inform us of the importance and necessity for imbibing the wisdom of Ayurveda.

INQUIRY:
- Why is Ayurveda so important now, in our ever increasing fast-paced society, than ever before?
- What benefits should I expect to experience while adapting to the principles of Ayurveda?
- I live a very busy life, how will I ever find the time to incorporate Ayurveda into my daily life?
- Is Ayurveda for everyone? If not, who should avoid Ayurveda?
- Starting point: Where does one begin?


Pitta ~ Basic Management

THE BASICS FOR MANAGING PITTA TYPES:
The very first thing which should come to mind when thinking of pitta is the brilliant blaze of fire. Pitta types are hot, fiery, oily, and intense. Therefore, management for pitta types is centered around:

  • Cooling
  • Calming and
  • Moderation

HEALTHY DOSE OF LOVING COMPASSION:
Since pitta types also have an inflammatory component, which is inherent to the element of fire, make sure to address pitta types with an extra dose of loving compassion.

TASTES TO PACIFY PITTA:
Ayurveda describes an interesting relationship of taste and its influence upon the body. According to this philosophy, pitta types often are most balanced by sweet, bitter and astringent tastes as these are considered to be cooling and pacifying.

PITTA IN A NUTSHELL:
intense, acidity, irritability, inflammation, loose stools, fever, nausea

PITTA WARNING BELLS:
- Burning Sensation
- Bleeding
- Inflammation

SIMPLE CONSIDERATIONS:
Several considerations for helping to balance pitta types:
- Eat foods which are cool and refreshing
- Avoid foods which are sour, salty, pungent and spicy
- Dairy milk, butter, and ghee are often beneficial for pacifying pitta
- Drink more water and consider aloe vera to help cool down pitta

PITTA QUALITIES AND THIER MANIFESTATIONS:

  • Hot
  • Sharp
  • Light
  • Liquid
  • Oily

HOT:
Pitta types are anything but ordinary. What brings about this extraordinary “fiery” nature often found in pitta types? The predominant elements for pitta types are fire and water and because of this, pitta individuals can develop excessive heat from within. This hot aspect of pitta can manifest as fever, hives, rashes and even urticaria. Therefore the goal for managing this excess hot quality is twofold:

1.] avoid excessive hot qualities [i.e. direct sunlight, spicy food, heated emotions]
2.] consider cooling elements [i.e. coconut oil, neem, sandalwood]

SHARP:
The sharp quality dominant in pitta types is a double-edged sword. This sharp quality provides the ability to penetrate into great depths of understanding often making pitta types forthright, direct and outspoken. One the other hand, this sharp quality can also create irritability, ulceration and even worse, perforation. Therefore, the goal for managing the excessively sharp quality of pitta is to:

- avoid sharp and aggravating qualities [i.e. alcohol, tobacco, criticism, judgement]
- consider introducing the opposing dull quality [i.e. milk, āmalaki, sandalwood]

LIGHT:
You cannot capture fire within your hands due to its subtle and light quality. If this quality is increased it can cause one to feel dizzy and light-headed. Therefore, individuals who experience this excessive light quality may want to avoid prolonged periods of fasting, and consider the opposing heavy quality [i.e. jatamāmsi, shankha pushpī]. Another consideration is to rub castor oil on the soles of one’s feet at bedtime. This will help to counteract the light quality of pitta with the heavy and dull quality of castor oil.

LIQUID:
Excess liquid quality of pitta can impair the digestive capacity [i.e. Agni] and can lead to acid indigestion and even diarrhea. If there is an excessive liquid quality of pitta then one may want to consider avoiding hydrophillic foods such as yogurt, salty foods, and even avoid fruits such as apricots and grafefruit.

OILY:
Often pitta types have a shiny complexion and this is due to the oily quality of pitta. This oily quality can make pitta types sensitive to oily foods which can aggravate conditions of the gallbladder. It’s interesting that bile, which is stored within the gallbladder, is considered a common element of pitta. Even furhter, if the oily quality of pitta is increased it’s thought to be a contributing factor for inflammatory gallbladder conditions [i.e. cholecystitis]. This excessive oily quality can also make pitta types vulnerable to persistent skin conditions [i.e. acne]. Individuals who have this excessive oily quality may want to consider the opposing dry quality. For example, individuals with persistent acne may want to consider topically applying chickpea flour, brahmī or camphor.

*For educational purposes only, not medical advice. 

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