Healthy & Delicious ~ Rhubarb Berry Crumble Recipe

The Wonderfully Interesting Rhubarb
Rhubarb is a wonderfully interesting vegetable ... fruit … herb?  Of course there are many discussions of where to place rhubarb, as it has been classified as both a fruit and vegetable. It is, however, an ancient plant that was originally imported from China and Tibet. It has an incredibly tart taste, because of which, it is frequently used with sweet dishes and is therefore classified as a fruit. However, technically it is a vegetable and has been used popularly as such around the world.

The rhubarb plant is a perennial which grows most abundantly in the Himalayans. The root of the rhubarb is used for medicinal and dietary purposes. However care must be taken when using the leaves – they are known to be poisonous. There are certain precautions to be aware of when using rhubarb. It has wonderful laxative properties, but because of this, there can tend to be reliance on the plant for bowel movements, and should be used only short term. 

Super Easy Dessert Recipe - Rhubarb Crumble

Contraindications

  • Pregnancy and breastfeeding
  • Emodin is a resin found in rhubarb which can be transmitted to infants during pregnancy and breastfeeding
  • Gout - The oxalic acid content in rhubarb can affect individuals with gout
  • Intestinal obstruction and inflammation of unknown origin
  • Diarrhea
  • General debility
  • Anemia – as it can reduce iron absorption
  • Cardiac  issues
  • Hyperkalaemia – can be further aggravated by potential loss of electrolytes

 

Despite some of these contraindications, when used correctly, rhubarb has wonderful healing properties. It is particularly beneficial in pitta and kapha conditions but can aggravate vata in excess. It has an affinity for the digestive, excretory and circulatory systems. It is a fantastic blood purifier in addition to its laxative effects.

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Properties
Rhubarb is light, dry and penetrating with a bitter, astringent and pungent taste. It has a cooling effect in the body and its post digestive effect is also pungent. It is very effective on the plasma, blood and fat tissues.   

Some indications, amongst others, include:

  • Constipation and Diarrhea – its action is dependent on dose.
  • Removing toxins
  • Dysentery
  • Abdominal tumors and obstructions
  • Hepatitis
  • Cirrhosis
  • Liver congestion
  • High cholesterol
  • Obesity
  • Endometriosis
  • Fibroids
  • Dysmenorrhea
  • Ulcers
  • Hemorrhoids
  • And many more!

 

As mentioned above, it is important to be aware of the contraindications of rhubarb. Always seek a physician’s advice before undertaking herbal supplementation.

Usage

There are many combination compounds that involve rhubarb to address certain conditions. Some being:

  • Rhubarb and ginger, fennel, peppermint for gripe
  • Rhubarb with psyllium husk, licorice and hemp seed for dry colon
  • Rhubarb with shatavari, amalaki and manjistha for high pitta and gastrointestinal tracts ulcers
  • Rhubarb and turmeric, myrrh and pippali for ama in female reproductive stagnation issues

 

There are numerous recipes which use rhubarb and it is used abundantly in many sweet fruit dishes. It is well used with strawberry in a pie. However personally, I prefer the rhubarb in a crumble. Here is my recipe – feel free to adjust according to taste!

~Rhubarb Berry Crumble~

Ingredients

  • ¼ cup of ghee
  • 1 cup of flour
  • (all-purpose flour is most popular but can substitute other types)
  • ½ cup of coconut sugar (or your choice of sweetener)
  • note: not honey as it shouldn’t be heated
  • ¼ cup of turbinado sugar
  • ¾ cup of mixed berries
  • ½ cup of chopped rhubarb roots (NOT leaves)
  • Pinch of rock salt
  • ¼ tsp of cinnamon
  • ¼ tsp of cardamom
  • ¼ tsp of fennel seeds
  • 1 tsp of vanilla essence

 

Steps

1. Place the turbinado sugar and the chopped rhubarb into a saucepan with the vanilla essence. Let simmer for about 15 mins until soft.

2. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees Farenheit.

3. Place rhubarb mixture along with the rest of the berries and the fennel seeds in an ovenproof dish

4. To prepare the crumble, mix together the flour, coconut sugar, spices and salt. Gently using your fingers add the ghee until large crumbs are formed.

5. Sprinkle crumble onto the berry rhubarb mixture and bake in oven for 35-40 mins until crumble is crispy and fruit juices are bubbling.

6. Enjoy with a mint leaf!

Note: this recipe can be varied and adjusted according to taste.

References

  • Lad, V. (2002). Textbook of Ayurveda. Albuquerque, N.M.: Ayurvedic Press.
  • Lad, V., & Frawley, D. (1986). The yoga of herbs: An Ayurvedic guide to herbal medicine. Santa Fe, N.M.: Lotus Press.
  • Pole, S. (2013). Ayurvedic medicine the principles of traditional practice. London: Singing Dragon.
  • Green, J. (2000). The herbal medicine-makers' handbook a home manual. Berkeley, Calif.: The Crossing Press.

Health Benefits Of Pomegranate + Pomegranate Chutney Recipe

Health Benefits Of Pomegranate
Revered since ancient times, this bright beautiful red fruit has become well known for its sweet astringent taste and healing properties. It also plays a role in myths and poetry! In fact, in one of the most popular Olympian telling of the story of Persephone, pomegranate seeds play an important role!

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This is an excerpt of the story:
Zeus, the king of the gods, it is said, permitted Hades (god of the underworld), who was in love with the beautiful Persephone, to carry her off as her mother Demeter was not likely to allow her daughter to go down to Hades. Persephone was gathering flowers in a field when Hades came to abduct her, bursting through a cleft in the earth. Demeter, when she found her daughter had disappeared, searched for her all over the earth. In most versions she forbids the earth to produce, or she neglects the earth and in the depth of her despair she causes nothing to grow. Finally the sun, who sees everything, told Demeter what had happened and at length she discovered the place of Persephone’s abode. In the end, Zeus pressed by the cries of the hungry people and by the other deities, forced Hades to return Persephone. Hades complies but first tricks Persephone by giving her some pomegranate seeds to eat. Persephone was released, but because she had tasted food in the underworld, she was obliged to spend a third of each year (the winter months) there, and the remaining part of the year with the gods above.

The Health Benefits Of Pomegranates

Pomegranate has inspired many comparisons of beauty in texts and other legends. Yet as beautiful and delicious as this fruit is, its healing properties are even more so! It is particularly effective on the circulatory and reproductive systems as it is a well-known aphrodisiac that has hemostatic properties.

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In addition to being a tridoshic fruit, pomegranate also has fantastic antacid and carminative actions. Despite pitta being aggravated by the sour taste, pomegranate is an exception to the rule. It is also particularly useful in cases of digestive disorders with inflammation. The rind of the fruit should be avoided during pregnancy and pomegranate is not recommended in cases of constipation.

Properties
Pomegranate is light and unctuous with a sweet, astringent and sour taste. It has a heating effect in the body and its post digestive effect is also sweet. It has a strong affinity for the digestive and reproductive systems. 

Some indications, amongst others, include:

  • Hyperacidity
  • Inflamed stomach
  • Inflamed intestines
  • Dysentery
  • Parasites
  • Excessive, sharp appetite
  • Bleeding
  • Weak heart
  • Leucorrhoea
  • Prostate conditions
  • Menopause
  • Nervine debility
  • And many others!

It is important to be aware of some of the contraindications of using pomegranate. It is advised against usage in pregnancy and other constipation as it has binding actions.  Always seek a physician’s advice before undertaking herbal supplementation.

Usage

There are many combination compounds that involve pomegranate to address certain conditions. Some being:

  • Pomegranate seeds or the juice with coriander and cumin for pitta digestion
  • Pomegranate rind and juice with haritaki and amalaki for diarrhea and acidity
  • Pomegranate rind with rhubarb root for tapeworm
  • Pomegranate with shatavari for menopause

 

~Pomegranate Chutney Recipe~

A delicious and easy way to incorporate pomegranate with our daily meals is by using it in chutney. This recipe is simple yet divine!

Ingredients

  • 4 teaspoons of dry pomegranate seeds
  • ½ cup fresh cilantro
  • ¼ cup of fresh mint leaves
  • 1 teaspoon of lemon juice
  • ¼ tsp fennel powder
  • ¼ tsp cumin powder
  • ½ onion chopped
  • Salt to taste
  • 4 tablespoons of water
  • Sugar and/or chili powder to taste

 

Steps

  1. Wash the pomegranate seeds well.
  2. Add all the ingredients into a blender with a little water and blend until smooth
  3. Place into a container and enjoy!
  4. This chutney can be kept for up to 3-5 days in the fridge
  • There are many variations that can be used according to one’s taste or preference. Different spices can be added or removed to create your own perfect pomegranate chutney!
  • Also adjust the amount of water to create the desired texture of the chutney

 

References

  • Lad, V. (1999). The complete book of Ayurvedic home remedies. New York: Three Rivers Press.
  • Sharma, H. (2011). Ayurvedic Healing. Singing Dragon
  • Lad, V. (2002). Textbook of Ayurveda. Albuquerque, N.M.: Ayurvedic Press.
  • Lad, V., & Frawley, D. (1986). The yoga of herbs: An Ayurvedic guide to herbal medicine. Santa Fe, N.M.: Lotus Press.
  • Pole, S. (2013). Ayurvedic medicine the principles of traditional practice. London: Singing Dragon.
  • Green, J. (2000). The herbal medicine-makers' handbook a home manual. Berkeley, Calif.: The Crossing Press.

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 Ajmoda + Delicious Parantha Recipe

Health Benefits Of Ajmoda
Celery has long been a staple on the list of superfoods and healthy snacks. It is abundant in our diet and is easily available. However, the celery seed is not as well-known as the vegetable. Ajmoda, or celery seed is an amazing digestive herb. It literally means ‘goats delight’ and is renowned for its digestive properties. Ajmoda can grow very well in dry soil indicating its affinity for absorbing moisture and its beneficial properties in the use of kapha conditions.

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Good health depends on strong, efficient digestion.

It can sometimes be confused with Ajwain (Bishops seed), and indeed they have similar properties, but Ajmoda is rather more potent than Ajwain when it comes to deepanpachan qualities (removing toxins and kindling digestive fire). It is particularly effective on pacifying vata and kapha. In excess it can aggravate pitta due to its heating qualities and should be monitored in conditions such as hyperacidity. In addition to its deepanpachan effects, it also works well as a carminative and a nervine. As it also benefits the respiratory system, it can also be used in lung conditions.

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Ajmoda Celery Seeds


Properties
Ajmoda is a light, dry and penetrating herb with a pungent taste. It has a heating effect in the body and its post digestive effect is also pungent. It has a strong affinity for the digestive, nervine, respiratory and urinary systems. 

Some indications, amongst others, include:

  • Asthma
  • Bronchitis
  • Cough
  • Sinus congestion
  • Flatulence
  • Intestinal cramps
  • Weak digestion
  • Spasms
  • Muscular tension
  • Dysmenorrhea
  • Menstrual cramps
  • Lower backache
  • Nocturia
  • Cystitis
  • Dysuria
  • Arthritis
  • Rheumatism
  • And many more!

 

It is important to be aware of some of the contraindications of using Ajmoda. It is advised against usage in hyperacidity and other high pitta conditions.  Always seek a physician’s advice before undertaking herbal supplementation.

Usage

There are many combination compounds that involve Ajmoda to address certain conditions. Some being:

  • Ajmoda and ginger, fennel, cardamom, cumin and coriander for digestive discomfort
  • Ajmoda with pippali, haritaki and anthrapachaka for vata/kapha type coughs
  • Ajmoda with Jatamansi, brahmi and tagar for nervine debility

 

There are numerous recipes which use Ajmoda and it is used abundantly in many savory dishes. A delicious way to experience the benefits of Ajmoda is in paranthas! These are flavorful flatbreads that can bring digestive ease in a soothing and delicious way!

~Ajmoda Parantha Recipe~

Parantha Ingredients
Ingredients

  • 2 cups of flour (whole wheat, or any grain that is desired)
  • 1 cup of water
  • ¼ tsp salt
  • ¼ tsp pepper
  • 1 tsp ghee
  • 1 tsp of Ajmoda seeds

 

Utensils

  • Rolling pin
  • Wooden chopping board
  • Mixing bowl
  • ‘Thava’ or flat pan for cooking the paranthas

 

      Steps

1. Place all the ingredients except the water into a mixing bowl

2. Mix together using a little of the water at a time until the mixture becomes a dough.

3. Let it sit covered for 30 mins

4. Knead the dough for a good 5-7 mins using more water if needed

5. Heat a ‘thava’ or a flat pan on the stove

6. Using some dry flour , start shaping small pieces of the dough into small balls

7. Making sure the wooden chopping board is nicely floured,  roll out the dough balls into flatbreads one at a time.

8. Cook each flatbread on the pan under medium/high heat, flipping each side until both sides are nicely browned and cooked through

9. Garnish with some chutney and ghee, and enjoy!

  • Other vegetables and herbs can also be added as desired. Some popular variations are cilantro as well as potatoes and carrots.

 

References

  • Lad, V. (1999). The complete book of Ayurvedic home remedies. New York: Three Rivers Press.
  • Sharma, H. (2011). Ayurvedic Healing. Singing Dragon
  • Lad, V. (2002). Textbook of Ayurveda. Albuquerque, N.M.: Ayurvedic Press.
  • Lad, V., & Frawley, D. (1986). The yoga of herbs: An Ayurvedic guide to herbal medicine. Santa Fe, N.M.: Lotus Press.
  • Pole, S. (2013). Ayurvedic medicine the principles of traditional practice. London: Singing Dragon.
  • Green, J. (2000). The herbal medicine-makers' handbook a home manual. Berkeley, Calif.: The Crossing Press.

A Healthy Holiday Treat [Seviyan Kheer] - An Indian Dessert Recipe

 

A Healthy Holiday Treat
The holidays are just around the corner and it’s the perfect time to bond with family, friends, and loved ones. It is also the season to enjoy your favorite foods. Is it possible to enjoy the holiday treats without the guilt of gaining weight? Yes - just indulge sensibly and consider more healthy holiday options. In fact, holiday foods don't have to be unhealthy. Consider for the holidays, a simple and delicious Indian dessert - “Seviyan Kheer” which is often made on religious and auspicious occasions.

First - Digesting Our Holiday Experience ...
Nothing brings out the holiday spirit more than eating amongst friends and family in a joyous and pleasant manner. According to Ayurveda, the act of cooking and eating in a positive atmosphere - free from stress, is essential to healthy digestion and overall health. This holiday season make sure to give special attention to all things worth celebrating. Therefore, consider giving thanks before eating, and consider eating quietly or simply having a pleasant yet calming conversation ... your digestion will thank you for it later.

Seviyan Kheer - An Indian Sweet Dessert 

Ingredients:
1/2 liter Milk
1/3 cup roasted Vermicelli (Seviyan)
1/2 cup Sugar
1/2 tbsp Ghee (Clarified Butter)
Almond Flakes
1/2 tsp Cardamom Powder
1 tbsp Raisins

Method:
- Heat Ghee in a pan and roast the Vermicelli for a couple of minute
- Add the milk, stir it and let it cook for about 7 - 8 Mins till the the milk reduces to half its quantity
- Add sugar, stir and cook it for another 5 - 6 Mins
- Add raisins, almond flakes, cardamom powder and stir everything well.
- The dessert is ready to be served chilled in serving bowls

Holiday Health Tip - Enjoy All 6 Tastes
Sweet might be the taste of choice — but we know we can’t eat just sweets! Ayurveda identifies six tastes: sweet, sour, salty, bitter, pungent, and astringent. For each of our meals we can strive to include all six of these tastes. This will tend to make us feel more satisfied and ultimately have fewer cravings. The vpk® by Maharishi Ayurveda Churnas are excellent spice mixes that include all the six tastes, and as an added bonus they also improve digestion.

The holidays are a time to enjoy. We can use nature’s intelligence, ayurvedic herbs, to support agni. We can increase our appetite and gastric juices by occasionally drinking warm water, ginger water or cumin tea, or by eating a thin slice of fresh ginger with a pinch of salt before meals. Or for the sake of convenience, balance and promote digestion with one or two Herbal Di-Gest tablets before a meal.

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Photo Credit: Whiskaffair.com - Click For An Alternative Delicious Saviyan Ki Kheer Recipe!!


Ayurvedic Recipe - Acorn Squash Delight

 

Ayurvedic Recipe - Acorn Squash Delight
Ayurveda explains a concept of “like increases like” – which means the increased cold quality of autumn and winter for example will also increase the cold quality within; hence the tendency to catch a “cold” during this time of year. Therefore, in order to remain balanced during the season we should consider nourishing warm meals. No better reason to enjoy this delicious Acorn Squash Recipe

Seasonal Considerations:
– eat warming, soothing, and easily digestible meals
– eat foods which are primarily sweet, sour and salty in taste
– drink warming herbal teas such as ginger, cinnamon and cardamom tea
– keep warm and stay out of strong winds
– do regular yoga, meditation, and pranayama breathing exercises

"Acorn Squash Delight"

INGREDIENTS:
1 Acorn squash
1 tbs. of ghee or coconut oil
1/4 cup of pecans or walnuts
1 cup of cooked basmati rice
1/4 tsp. of cumin powder
2 tbs. of raisins
pinch of salt
1/4 onion diced
1/4 tsp. of ginger powder
1/4 cup of cilantro, basil or parsley

PREPARATION:
1. Preheat oven to 300 degrees
2. Cut the squash in half and gut out the seeds.
3. Prepare a pie dish or baking dish with 1/2 inch of water.
4. In a small pan warm ghee and then mix all the ingredients, minus the rice, acorn and cilantro etc., sautéing for around 5 minutes on a medium flame.
5. Separately, bring 1 cup of rice with 2 cups of water with a pinch of salt to a boil. Lower the flame and cover. Cook for 20 minutes.
6. Take these ingredients, mix them all together in a small bowl and add them to the halves of the squash. Place the acorn squash into the baking dish and cover with aluminum foil.
7. Bake for 35-45 minutes at 375 degrees.

Test the acorn squash with a fork and when the squash appears soft. Turn the oven off and remove from racks. Let sit for 5 minutes. Garnish  with the cilantro etc. and serve.

Bon Appétit

About The Author: 
Vishnu M.Ayu, BA Psy., LMT, CSP, E-RYT, CS2, is a licensed massage therapist with more than 15 years of experience and Master’s of Ayurveda/Yoga from Hindu University of America. He is the owner of ‘Hidden Health’ Center and offers Ayurveda out of a few locations. To learn more about Vishnu and his practice you can find him at hiddenhealthcenter.com.


Ayurveda: Honey - The Natural Healer

The ancients have long considered honey as one of nature’s most remarkable gifts to mankind. Not only is honey considered a sweetener but instead is revered as a natural product with high nutritional and medicinal value. Honey contains sugars like fructose, glucose, maltose along with proteins, fats, minerals, enzymes and amino acids.

“It promotes the healing process.” 

 

The Natural Healer...

According to Charaka - a prolific author of the classical texts of Ayurveda, honey is one of those ingredients which can be taken on a daily basis. These classical texts go on to state that all the organs in the body respond favorably when honey is eaten as indicated.  For example, honey is thought to possess a special quality called “yogavahi” which allows honey to penetrate into the body’s deepest tissues. Likewise, honey has “lekhana property” which implies having the ability to scrape out cholesterol and fat explaining its popularity as a weight loss remedy.

Dr. Oz Discusses Why Honey Is Healthier Than Sugar

The Health Benefits Of Honey
“Honey originates from flowers having different tastes and potencies. Honey is considered the best ‘Yogavahi‘ - catalyst substance, carrying the properties of medical drugs added to it.” - Ancient Wisdom

Here are just some of the health benefits of honey:

  • improves digestion [agnideepanam]
  • improves the complexion of skin [varnyam]
  • heals wounds and certain skin diseases [shodhanam ropanam - kushta]
  • improves vision [chakshushyam]
  • good for the heart [hrudya]
  • penetrates into deep bodily channels [sookshma marganusai]
  • helpful in managing diabetic and urinary tract diseases [meha]
    ... and much much more!

 

Generally, the consumption of honey should not be more than 4-5 teaspoons daily taking into consideration one’s overall state of health and digestion.

Types Of Honey
Ayurveda has classified honey depending on the type of bee which collects the honey and the qualities which the honey possess.  The following types of honey include:

Makshika. This honey is collected by small honey bees and is considered the best type of honey with immense medicinal properties. This honey possesses light and dry qualities and is beneficial for kapha conditions.

Kshoudra. This honey is collected by medium sized honey bees and is characterized as being light and cold and described as being able to dissolve kapha.

Pouttika. This honey is collected by larger bees and collects honey from the nectar of poisonous flowers. This type of honey is known to increase vata and conditions such as gouty arthritis.

Bhramara. This honey is sticky in nature and collected by large bees.

Chatra. This honey possess heavy and cold qualities and thought to be beneficial in gout and conditions of abnormal skin pigmentation such as vitiligo.

Arghya. This type of honey is described as being good for eyes but may cause arthritis.

Oudalaka. This type of honey is described in the classical texts as being useful in skin diseases, and helps in bringing about clarity to the voice.

Dala. This type of honey is dry in quality and has been described as helping to reduce nausea and vomiting.

“Nothing is so troublesome as ama [indigestion] caused by
the improper intake of honey.’

- Charaka Samhita

Caution:
Honey is natural and considered harmless for adults. However, pediatricians strongly caution against feeding honey to children under 1 year old. Ayurveda also explains certain precautions for the use of honey.

  • honey should not be heated nor used in conditions of excess heat
  • honey and ghee are considered incompatible when used in equal amounts - by weight.
  • honey and sesame oil are also considered incompatible in equal amounts

Disclaimer:
This is strictly for education purposes and not considered medical advice. Always first seek the advice of your primary care physician before considering any new health regimen. Also, take special caution against feeding honey to children under 1 year old.


Healthy Ayurvedic Recipes For The Holidays

 

Healthy Ayurvedic Recipes
With all the winter holidays coming up, there is much temptation in the way of food and drink! Every supermarket and store is displaying holiday treats and the delicious aromas are enough to invite one to splurge. However, the following recipes will lessen the guilt that comes with indulgence. After all, using organic and doshic friendly ingredients will bring joy and contentment instead of the guilt of festive sweets. Enjoy!

Ayurvedic Sooji Halwa 

All ingredients should be organic.
Ingredients

    • ½ cup of coconut oil or ghee
    • 1 cup of semolina flour
    • ½ teaspoon of cinnamon
    • ½ teaspoon of cardamom
    • 1 cup of whole milk
    • 2 cups of filtered spring water
    • ½ cup of raisins
    • ¼ cup of sunflower seeds
    • ¼ cup of pumpkin seeds
    • ¼ cup of turbinado sugar

 

    1. In a saucepan boil the milk, water, sugar, cinnamon and cardamom together. Let simmer for 5 minutes.
    2. In the meantime, in a separate pan, sauté the flour in the oil until a deep golden color. Keep over medium/low heat.
    3. Add the boiled mixture to the sautéed semolina stirring frequently with care as there may be some sizzling and splashing.
    4. Add the raisins and the seeds and let cook for a further 5 minutes.
    5. Spoon into a bowl and enjoy! 

 

Great Video: How To Easily Make Delicious Sooji Halwa

Ayurvedic Fruit Bake
Note: Pitta types can substitute fennel powder over cinnamon and Kapha types can add ½ teaspoon of powdered ginger.

All ingredients should be organic.
Ingredients

  • 3 bananas peeled and sliced
  • 4 apricots pitted and sliced
  • 3 peaches pitted and sliced
  • ½ cup of dried figs
  • ¼ cup of raisins
  • ½ cup of coconut flakes
  • ½ teaspoon cinnamon
  • ½ teaspoon cardamom
  • ½ cup of slivered almonds
  • Juice of two oranges
  • Mint for garnish

 

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
  2. Arrange the fruit in a dish large enough to hold in a single layer.
  3. Sprinkle the raisins, figs over the fruit.
  4. Pour the orange juice over the fruit and sprinkle the cardamom and cinnamon on top.
  5. Sprinkle the almonds and coconut on top and bake for 25 minutes.
  6. Garnish with mint and enjoy!

 

Ayurvedic Winter Delight
Note: This is a rather heavy drink so Kapha types should drink in moderation and substitute almond milk over whole milk. For Pitta types substitute Fennel powder instead of ginger.

All ingredients should be organic.
Ingredients

  • 1 cup of whole milk
  • 1 cup of coconut milk
  • 1 stick of cinnamon
  • ½ vanilla bean pod with seeds removed
  • ¼ tsp of freshly grated nutmeg
  • ¼ tsp of ground ginger

 

  1. Bring all the ingredients to a boil in a pot and let simmer for 10 minutes.
  2. Strain into a cup and enjoy!
  3. Honey, jaggery or stevia can be added for sweetness according to taste.
  4. Alternatively adding blended dates and/or almonds can also enhance the vitality boosting element.

Ayurvedic Detox Ingredients + Healthy Ayurvedic Dessert Recipe [Sooji Halwa]

 

Ayurvedic Detox Ingredients
In ancient times food was considered medicine. This being the case, people valued food much differently then. For example, considerations such as from whom and where we buy our food, the state of mind when preparing and eating food all matters and has subtle effects upon our state of health and well-being. Therefore, always seek out locally grown organic sources of food and eat in a peaceful manner in order to help nourish your body and mind.

Likewise, from an ayurvedic perspective, the setting which one eats should be as clean and pure as a sacred temple. This same sense of austerity should also be projected upon oneself [i.e. state of mind] when eating. Also, when eating we should eat with a balanced state of mind in order to appreciate the nourishing qualities we introduce into our body. Finally, ayurveda considers the unique needs of each individual – such as “vata”“pitta”, and “kapha” individuals. Therefore, in order to help maintain health and balance we should learn to eat accordingly to these very needs.

Ayurvedic Detox Ingredients - Guest Anurag Sharma 

"EAT SATTVIC FOOD”
Sattvic food is light and easy to digest. Eating sattvic food brings about clarity to the mind and often desired by individuals who live a life of austerity. Examples of sattvic food is listed at the bottom of the page.

Three Powerful Detox Ingredients:

  1. Black pepper. Modern research suggests that black pepper enhances the uptake and utilization of oxygen by brain cells. Likewise, black pepper helps to improve the quality of digestion – therefore, preventing formation of by-products of poor digestion [ama].
  2. Ginger. Ayurveda describes fresh ginger root as one of the best enhancers of digestion – helping to better assimilate food and prevent the formation of toxic by-products of digestion [ama].
  3. Turmeric. Turmeric is anti-inflammatory, antiseptic, and antibacterial and has long been used in the Indian system of medicine to treat a variety of conditions.

 

Healthy Ayurvedic Dessert Recipe
~Sooji Halwa~

Halwa is a popular indian dessert that is widely used across many cultures and countries. It is usually made up of flour, sugar, ghee and can also encompass nuts and certain fruits. There are several varieties including almond, carrot, sesame and mung amongst others. Sooji Halwa is made using semolina flour and has many health benefits. It is a great source of vital minerals, nutrients and also yields high energy.

Some health benefits of Sooji:

  • Good for weight loss and diabetics as it has a low glycemic index
  • Provides energy as it is low in fat and high in carbohydrates
  • Low sodium and cholesterol levels and high levels of potassium, vitamins B and E therefore supports good heart and kidney function
  • Phosphorus and magnesium levels in sooji assist in maintenance of healthy muscles, nerves and bones
  • The calcium and zinc content is also helpful in bone health and immunity
  • During cases of fever and upset stomach, sooji can be made into rava kanji which is a light, easily digested type of porridge. It is also very nourishing.

 

Ayurvedic Sooji (semolina) Halwa 

Ingredients

  • ½ cup of coconut oil or ghee
  • 1 cup of semolina flour
  • ½ teaspoon of cinnamon
  • ½ teaspoon of cardamom
  • 1 cup of whole milk
  • 2 cups of filtered spring water
  • ½ cup of raisins
  • ¼ cup of sunflower seeds
  • ¼ cup of pumpkin seeds
  • ¼ cup of turbinado sugar

 

  1. In a saucepan boil the milk, water, sugar, cinnamon and cardamom together. Let simmer for 5 minutes.
  2. In the meantime, in a separate pan, sauté the flour in the oil until a deep golden color. Keep over medium/low heat.
  3. Add the boiled mixture to the sautéed semolina stirring frequently with care as there may be some sizzling and splashing.
  4. Add the raisins and the seeds and let cook for a further 5 mins. Spoon into a bowl and enjoy!

 

Sattva
Sattva [pure] qualities of the mind are expressed mostly as love and compassion, righteousness, and often describes the kind of person who seeks after truth in life. Sattva individuals tend to be well-mannered with an optimistic and postitve attitude. We can think of sattvic energy within the mind as that being of great clarity.

Examples Of Sattvic Fruit:
– mango
– pomegranate
– coconut
– figs
– peaches

Examples Of Sattvic Grains:
– rice
– tapioca
– blue corn

Examples Of Sattvic Vegetables:
– sweet potato
– lettuce
– parsley
– sprouts
– yellow squash

Examples Of Sattvic Beans:
– mung beans
– yellow lentils
– kidney beans
– lima beans

Examples Of Sattvic Dairy:
– milk
– fresh homemade yogurt or cheese

Photo Credit: GuideDoc
50 Best Superfoods of 2015


Coffee - An Ayurvedic Perspective + Bulletproof Coffee Recipe

Coffee - An Ayurvedic Perspective
For many of us, our mornings are just not complete without a cup of freshly brewed coffee. Whether you’re a local at Starbucks or scoff at Starbucks Venti Caramel Macchiato as not being a real macchiato - the fact remains, we love coffee. According to some research, 54% of Americans over the age of 18 years drink coffee everyday. Let us therefore, explore some of the health concerns centered around American’s favorite drink - coffee!

The Ayurvedic Perspective:
According to Ayurveda, “every type of food can be a poison or a medicine” - depending on what your individual constitution is and how and when you consume it. Ayurveda, is a comprehensive science which takes into consideration one’s unique dosha type - vata, pitta, and kapha.

VATA DOSHA:
Vata types are generally individuals who are easily over-stimulated. Vata individuals are mostly governed by the air element which reflects the increased baseline metabolic rate.

PITTA DOSHA:
Pitta types are typically your “Type-A Personalities’ who tend to be ambitious and competitive. Pitta individuals are more prone to acidic and inflammatory conditions being mostly governed by the fire element.

KAPHA DOSHA:
Kapha types are often the “easy-going” kind and generally have a slower metabolic rate. These individuals are mostly governed by the water and earth elements and therefore are more vulnerable to weight gain due to a slower metabolism.

The Vitality Of Life - “Ojas”
We live in a modern world of over-stimulation. Yet the ancient wisdom of Ayurveda speaks volumes about the quality of stillness. It’s through these various practices of stillness [i.e. yoga & meditation] that one promotes a sense of vitality represented by the production and preservation of “ojas”. Ojas is also referred to as the source of vitality, immunity and vigor in the body and the quality of ojas is dependent on diet, lifestyle and stress.

Stress Response Diminishes Ojas
Some of the more concerning aspects of coffee is our dependence on it for boosting energy, mental clarity and/or keeping the bowels regular. As we know, all of these benefits are very short-lived. Likewise, coffee is a stimulant and increases the release of stress-fighting hormones, which are usually reserved for ‘fight-or-flight’ situations and therefore oppose the concept of “ojas” as explained above. More importantly, DHEA [dehydroepiandrosterone] is a steroid hormone which is responsible for cellular and tissue repair. Unfortunately, for us coffee lovers - DHEA decreases with stress and coffee consumption.

Grass-Fed Butter - DHEA
DHEA, or dehydroepiandrosterone, has become known as the ‘fountain of youth’ and is made from cholesterol by the adrenal glands. Ayurveda has traditionally considered ghee [clarified butter] to be the healthiest source of edible fat, with many beneficial properties - being an excellent source of cholesterol to form DHEA. According to Ayurveda, not only does ghee improve memory and strengthen the brain and nervous system but it’s thought to improve digestion, promote longevity, and even help to protect the body from various diseases. Finally. Grass-fed butter is high in butyrate, a short-chain fatty acid and studies show that butyrate can both prevent and decrease inflammation.

CLICK HERE - Improving Brain Function With Ayurveda

Craze: Coffee + Grass-Fed Butter = "Bulletproof Coffee"

Directions:
Brew 1 cup (8-12 oz.) of coffee using filtered water, just off the boil, with 2 1/2 heaping tablespoons freshly ground Bulletproof® Coffee Beans. (French Press is easiest.)

  1. Add in 1-2 tablespoons of Brain Octane™ to the hot coffee (It’s STRONG – start with 1 tsp. and work up over several days).
  2. Add 1-2 tablespoons grass-fed, unsalted butter or ghee
  3. Mix it all in a blender for 20-30 seconds until it is frothy like a foamy latte

Click Here - More Info On Bulletproof Coffee

Ayurvedic Considerations

Vata Types:
Remembering that vata types are individuals who are easily over-stimulated and also vulnerable to dehydration, constipation, and insomnia [due to the air element]. Therefore, vata types may want to limit their intake of coffee. Likewise, because the sweet taste balances vata types, these individuals would benefit most by having coffee which is both creamy and sweet - as these are grounding and balancing for vata types.

Pitta Types:
Pitta individuals are more prone to acidic and inflammatory conditions which can become exacerbated by the acidic nature of coffee. Therefore, pitta types will benefit most by adding the grass-fed butter [ghee] and/or coconut oil to their coffee. Similarly, pitta types also become more balanced with the taste of sweetness. Therefore, pitta individuals may want to consider adding high-quality maple syrup or organic cane sugar to their coffee - while skipping the cream.

Kapha Types:
Because kapha individuals are mostly governed by the water and earth elements and are more vulnerable to weight gain due to a slower metabolism, these individuals should consider taking their coffee black - no cream, no sugar. Both milk and cream often increase congestion which is already common to kapha types.

The Secret Ingredient?
“If you take the caffeine out of coffee, the benefits cited [below] remain relatively the same. So, if it isn’t the caffeine that is responsible for these benefits, then what is it? There are about 1000 active constituents in the coffee bean and only a few of them are understood. We do know that the coffee bean, the seed of the fruit, is loaded with antioxidants.”
Source - Dr. John Douillard

Want More?

Some Health Benefits Of Coffee:
1. Men who consumed 6 or more cups of coffee a day had an 18% reduction in prostate cancer risk, and a 40% reduction of aggressive lethal prostate cancer. (1)

2. Four cups of coffee a day could reduce your risk of liver cirrhosis by 84% (2)

3. The equivalent of five cups a day for five weeks began to reverse Alzheimer’s damage in the brains of mice by reducing levels of the abnormal protein amyloid-beta, both in the blood and the brain. (3)

4. One to four cups reduced the risk of Parkinson’s by 47%, and five cups a day reduced it by 60%. (4) In this study, the greater number of cups of coffee per day, the lower the risk of Parkinson’s disease.

However ...

  • Raises homocysteine levels – a major risk factor for heart disease. (5)
  • Raises blood pressure. (6)
  • Raises cholesterol. (7)
  • Is associated with heart irregularities. (8)
  • Increases inflammation. (9)
  • Can damage the nervous system. (10)
  • Interferes with neurotransmitters in the brain. (11)
  • Alters DNA repair. (12)
  • Increases risk of kidney stones. (13)
  • Lowers bone density in women. (14)
  • Interferes with sleep. (15)
  • Is linked to erectile dysfunction. (16)
  • Is linked to increases symptoms of gastric reflux and heartburn. (17)

Interestingly ...
Many of the above-mentioned health concerns “may” be reduced with the introduction of  grass-fed butter, coconut oil, and/or ghee to your coffee. Hence - the “bulletproof coffee” craze!

Disclaimer:
This information is strictly for educational purposes and NOT considered medical advice. Always first seek consultation with your primary care physician before considering any new health regimen.


Takra [Buttermilk] - The Divine Healing Ayurvedic Digestive Drink

 

The Divine Healing Digestive Drink
Takra or buttermilk, is a liquid preparation prepared by continuously churning yogurt in water. This preparation increases your digestive power and is often used in many health conditions. Takra is considered beneficial for many G.I. conditions such as IBD and Crohn’s disease as well as poor digestion, hemorrhoids, tumors, edema, diarrhea, anemia, urinary diseases and many other health-related conditions.

“He who uses takra daily does not suffer from diseases, and diseases cured by takra do not recur;
just as amrita [divine nectar] is for the gods, takra is to humans.”
- Bhavaprakasha Chpt 6.7

The Benefits Of Homemade:
This type of buttermilk is not like the fermented buttermilk you often find in the stores. Likewise, the properties of regular yogurt are sour and thought to increase water retention [kapha], may cause a variety of [pitta] skin conditions [i.e. acne and rashes] and is generally more difficult to digest. However, when you properly make takra, you lighten the properties of yogurt and remove the sourness so that it becomes a light and beneficial digestive drink.

There is no medicine better than buttermilk for treatment
of hemorrhoids caused by vata and kapha.

– Charaka Samhita Ch. 14

The Ultimate Digestive Drink ... 

Alternative Recipe: 
1/4 cup yogurt
1 cup water
salt as per taste
1/2 teaspoon roasted cumin powder
mint leaves
coriander leaves
green chilies
chopped ginger

Directions: 
- Take 1/4 cup of yogurt into a vessel and add a cup of water.
- Add salt as per taste. Add 1/2 tsp. of roasted cumin powder.
- Mix the ingredients well with the help of a hand blender.
- Garnish it with coriander leaves, mint leaves, green chili and chopped ginger.

Properties:

  • Taste: astringent, sour and sweet
  • Energetics: heating
  • Post-digestive effect: sweet
  • Qualities: binding, light, dry

 

Actions:

  • digestive
  • promotes immunity
  • nourishes the brain and promotes intellect
  • pacifies vata

 

 

Want More?
CLICK HERE - To Learn How To Make Lassi - Refreshing Digestive Drink


DISCLAIMER:

This information is strictly for educational purpose only and NOT considered medical advice. Always first discuss with your primary care physician before considering any new health regimen.