Simple Ways To Stay Cool This Summer

 

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

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

Ayurvedic Secrets To Stay Cool In The Summer - Cure Joy

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

Essential Oils


 

 

 

 

Foods To Favor ...

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

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

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

 

~CUCUMBER RAITA~

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

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

 

Want To Stay Cool & Well Hydrated?

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

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

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

 

Simple Tips To Stay Cool This Summer:

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

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

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


An Ayurvedic Take On Constipation: The 5 F's

An Ayurvedic Take On Constipation: The 5 F's
Constipation. It's not something that we like to talk about typically. Unless, of course, you happen to find yourself in the world of Ayurveda, in which case elimination is a frequent topic of conversation. Why? Because digestion is at the center of Ayurveda's understanding of health and wellness, and elimination gives us a very good gauge as to the quality of digestion.

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What Is Constipation? 
According to Allopathic (Western) Medicine, the definition of constipation is an adult who has not had a bowel movement in three days or a child who has not had a bowel movement in four days. In Ayurveda we refine that definition considerably and look for at least a daily bowel movement, preferably shortly after waking, as a sign of healthy digestion and elimination. This bowel movement should also come easily, without straining, and be well formed, not too hard and dry and not too loose and liquid.

Regularity ... 
Regularity is important, as a daily bowel movement ensures that wastes and toxins that the body has worked hard to prepare for removal from the body, are actually removed. Waste (as feces) that stagnate in the colon mean that these toxins can be reabsorbed by the mucous membrane lining of the colon, as well as block mineral and water absorption, which is one of the main functions of the colon.

How To Relieve Constipation Naturally

This type of regularity might seem like a stretch for some, but Ayurveda offers many supports to help you arrive at and keep regularity. J. Kashyapa Fisher of the Ayurvedic Institute offers a nice short-hand for these tools, the 5 F's.

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The 5 F's of Regular Elimination

1. Fluid
The easiest and often most effective way to increase elimination is to make sure there's enough water coming in to keep the gastrointestinal tract hydrated. We are a chronically dehydrated society, and many of us could see a plethora of benefits by simply increasing the water (not soda, tea, coffee, kombucha, or other liquids, but WATER) we intake daily. If the mucous membrane of the GI Tract is dehydrated it will make for a dry, rough, and sticky passage for any waste material. I have had many clients start to have a daily bowel movement simply by increasing their water intake.

2. Fiber
It's true, we need fiber to assist peristalsis in the Gastro-Intestinal tract. While 'fiber' might lead you to think of a fiber supplement, we're primarily talking about whole foods here. Fiber comes exclusively from plant-based foods, meaning whole grains, vegetable, and fruits. Upping the amount of plants in your diet, and thus your fiber, is a wonderful way to support proper elimination.

3. Fire
Fire here refers to agni, the Ayurvedic view of metabolic fire. Agni is your power of digestion and transformation, not only of physical food substances, but of thoughts, feelings, and experiences. A balanced metabolic fire will mean that we fully digest our food, keeping that which nourishes us, and eliminating that which does not serve us. A weak fire will mean that we have a hard time fully digesting our food, and the undigested food-stuff that remains putrefies in the GI tract, creating a mucoid plaque that Ayurveda calls āma. Working Ayurvedically to balance agni is a step not only to overall health, but to healthy elimination.

4. Fat
Western medical thinking has finally caught up to Ayurveda's understanding of the benefit of adequate amounts of healthy fats. In Ayurveda we view fat as the second component of hydration after water. If you're taking in enough water, but lacking fats, you'll still be dry. As we already discussed, a dry GI tract will have a hard time smoothly moving waste through. Dry, rough, or pellet-like stools are all signs that you're lacking hydration in the system, and bringing in enough fat is an important component in balanced hydration.

5. Fitness
Our bodily systems were made to be supported by regular movement. Everything functions better when there is enough movement to keep the body from stagnating. Digestion and elimination are no different here. Regular movement like yoga asana, walking, swimming, and tai chi will assist circulation; help tone the musculature of the body, including the muscles of the GI tract (how did you think it moved food through?). If your daily routine has you stationary or seated for a good portion of it be strategic with planning some daily movement. A pre or post lunchtime walk, a few rounds of Sun Salutation in the morning, or other whole body exercise will help to keep digestion and elimination moving.

Schedule
Not an F, but the final "s" in the 5 F's is schedule. The more regularity you create for yourself, the more the body will respond by being regular. Our brains are wired with a circadian rhythm, and while we can certainly disrupt it, we'll be healthiest and usually happiest when we play by the rules of the diurnal clock. By establishing regular times for sleeping, eating, and eliminating we're allowing the body to partner with us in establishing a rhythm. Often just establishing a regular elimination time in which you spend some time seated on the toilet, relaxing, and breathing is enough to cue the body that it has permission to eliminate.

Put it into practice
Ayurveda is a science with a wealth of tools for optimizing digestion and elimination, all based on your unique constitutional balance. As you explore the 5 F's, try making one adjustment at a time so you can really observe the changes that take place. You might want to journal daily the shifts you're making and how they are affecting your digestion, elimination, energy level, sleep, etc. Using Ayurveda is a beautiful way to find more balance in the physical body, making us better able to be present for our work in the world. May these teachings be of benefit.

About The Author

Kara Aubin
Kara Aubin was called to the path of yoga in 1998, and has been a dedicated student and practitioner since. A lifelong lover of movement, she was drawn in by the intention and pranic wisdom of yogic movement, and the profound and challenging nature of yogic stillness. As a ParaYoga Certified teacher and NAMA Certified Ayurvedic Health Counselor based in Kalamazoo, MI and Albuquerque, NM she weaves the teachings of yoga and Ayurveda into group classes, private sessions, workshops, and retreats. Her mission is to guide students toward their bright inherent potential, as well as their right to radical wellness and balance.

Want an Ayurvedic consultation with Kara Aubin? 
Contact her at Kara Aubin


Turmeric - The Holy, Auspicious & Natural Healer

 

Turmeric - The Holy, Auspicious & Natural Healer
You probably know Turmeric as the main spice in curry. In fact, Turmeric is a common spice found in almost every kitchen in many Asian countries like India. It has a warm, bitter taste and is frequently used to add color and flavor to curry. Amongst its countless roles, Turmeric is widely utilized in Ayurvedic Medicine in treating allergies, immune conditions, liver diseases and neurologic disorders. Turmeric contains the chemical curcumin. Curcumin and other chemicals in turmeric decrease swelling and reduce inflammation. Because of this, turmeric is developing quite a reputation for treating conditions that involve inflammation. In other words, we are just now beginning to understand why Turmeric has always been considered a holy, auspicious and natural healer.

Turmeric Herbal Supplements
Turmeric is one of the oldest, most important spices known to humankind. Turmeric is bitter, astringent and pungent in taste, and has a heating quality. Due to its heating quality, turmeric helps to balance Kapha and Vata doshas (mind-body types), and due to its bitter taste, it helps to balance the Pitta dosha, thus making it tri-doshic. Turmeric is also beneficial for helping with occasional congestion, soothing a hoarse voice or the occasional cough, and easing feelings of heaviness in the head due to a Kapha imbalance.

Creative & Interesting Ways To Use Turmeric - Ela Gale

Health Benefits Of Turmeric
Some of the many health benefits of Turmeric are:

1. Common Allergies:
A pinch of turmeric in hot water can be used as an effective steaming method to assist in coughs and colds. Add a pinch of turmeric and salt to warm water and use this for gargling twice a day for alleviating sore throats.

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2. Asthma & Bronchitis:
As Turmeric has an affinity with the lungs, it can be used with a holy basil decoction to obtain relief from asthma and bronchitis.

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3. Anti-Inflammatory:
Consuming 500mg of turmeric daily has been found to have an anti-inflammatory effect on joints and has proved more effective than ibuprofen!

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4. Anti-Cancerous:
Due to its antioxidant properties, Turmeric has been found to be effective in inhibiting the growth and spread of cancer cells in the body. Recent research in rodents suggests that ‘Curcumin’, a factor extracted from Turmeric, is able to inhibit colon cancer growth and spread.

5. General Malaise:
Can’t get out of your bed in the morning? Feeling tired after a walk? A simple yet delicious tip- Take a pinch of turmeric with hot milk twice daily. Increased energy levels and overall fatigue may diminish.

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6. Beauty:
Turmeric is widely used in many beauty products due to its antiseptic and antibacterial properties. Apply turmeric along with honey for lightening of acne spots and for improving complexion. Using flour, turmeric and water, make a paste and apply directly to the skin and/or pimples for a healing effect. It has been found very effective in hair and skin health.

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7. Dyspepsia:
The use of Turmeric has been found to be successful in cases of dyspepsia. Add a small amount of turmeric to vegetables when cooking.

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8. Alzheimer's Disease:
Alzheimer’s disease is a neurodegenerative disorder, characterized by progressive cognitive deterioration together with declining activities of daily living, as well as behavioral changes. The many various effects of curcumin, such as its anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties can help improve overall memory in Alzheimer’s patients.

Turmeric “Golden” Milk ~ An Ayurvedic Elixir
It’s to no surprise to that turmeric has fast become a popular remedy for just about everything that ails you. Traditionally, turmeric milk has been used for conditions such as colds, congestion, headaches, and sore throats due to turmeric’s anti-inflammatory and anti-oxidant properties. What is more interesting is that Ayurveda [and other ancient systems of medicine] have used turmeric for health and wellness since for as long as historical records have existed.

Turmeric “Golden” Milk is extremely simple to make
– 1 cup of whole organic milk, preferably non-homogenized
– 1/2 tsp of dried turmeric

Very Very Easy To Make!
1. Place milk in a saucepan and cook over medium heat
2. Add turmeric [and additional spices, see below] and stir
3. Allow the milk to simmer for just a few minutes, stirring occasionally
4. Turn off heat, cover, and allow the mixture to sit for several minutes to allow for greater infusion
5. Strain the milk through a strainer if fresh ingredients were used
6. Serve warm and enjoy

 

Want To Spice It Up?
Turmeric is a bitter spice so if you want to spice it up and make your turmeric milk more flavorful then consider spicing it up with a pinch of this and a dash of that. Depending upon what you are attempting to target, here are several other considerations to help spice up your turmeric golden milk.

– 1 tsp of ghee which acts as a laxative to help promote bowel function
– 1 pinch of nutmeg which helps promote sound sleep and is also a carminative
– 1 pinch of ginger to act as an anti-inflammatory
– 1 pinch of cinnamon and/or cardamom for delectable flavoring

Word Of Caution Regarding Honey & Ghee:
Finally, you may also want to consider adding a 1/2 tsp of honey for flavoring. However ~ a word of caution. According to Ayurveda, equal amounts of honey and ghee [based upon weight] is considered to be toxic and should generally be avoided.

Anti-Inflammatory Turmeric Sun Dressing
Turmeric is widely utilized in Ayurvedic Medicine in treating allergies, immune conditions, liver diseases and neurological disorders. It is considered a holy, auspicious and natural healer.

Ingredients:

  • 4 Tbsp. extra virgin olive oil
  • Juice + zest of 2 Lemons
  • ¼ avocado
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1 Tbsp. ground turmeric
  • 1 Tbsp. raw local honey — if not vegan
  • pinch of Himalayan sea salt (to taste)

 

Blend all ingredients in a blender.  Add more avocado if you desire a thicker consistency.
Recipe Credit To: MindBodygreen.com

Caution
This is strictly for educational use and NOT medical advice. Always seek consult from your primary care physician and a qualified holistic health professional. Turmeric is contraindicated in disorders like GERD and in some gallbladder disorders. Use it with caution when you are pregnant. Turmeric also has many known drug/herb interactions therefore seeking a health professionals advice before usage is recommended.

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.


Sacred Rituals - The Daily Routine ["Dinacharya"]

 

Sacred Rituals - The Daily Routine
Within time and space we humans exist here on a planet surrounded by unspoken graceful poetic moments like when we witness the rise and setting sun, the moon waxing and waning on a crisp lucid night and a baby's first steps.  We are part of this eternal poetry where planets cycle around each other dancing in the sky and stars are birthed and reduced to ash after thousands of years. We are part of an infinite cosmos and within is exists a timeless inherent cosmic consciousness. Ayurveda takes all this into account as we traverse this terrain as spiritual beings in a human body.  Ayurveda, known as the "Science of Life, Art of Living and Science of Longevity" invites us all to really look at ourselves as a configuration of the five elements manifest in each and every one of us. The dance of the five elements creates unity and harmony.

The Five Elements & Doshas 
The universe contains all these five elements to various degrees. These five elements are Earth, Water, Fire, Air and Space/Ether. In order to further understand Ayurveda we come to learn its language as being a beautiful way to relate to the elements as part of the elements. Ayurvedic medical terminology suggests that when we look at the qualities of the elements they fall into what we practitioners call Vata, Pitta and Kapha.  Vata involves the combination of space and air elements, which primary qualities are dry, cold and light. Pitta involves the fire and water elements, that are primarily hot, light and moist. Though, Pitta can share drying as heat can be drying. Kapha is the overlap of water but also earth elements. Kapha primary qualities are heavy, cold and moist. Vata, Pitta and Kapha are what we call Doshas, or biological humors. Dosha is defined as that which is prone to decay and deterioration. Vata is the principle that governs the nervous system and the word Vata translates to basically "that which moves."  Pitta governs the digestive system and the word Pitta refers to "that which transforms and digests, governing the endocrine/digestive system. Kapha governs the immune system and translates as "that which molds or creates form."

The Rhythm Of Life - Cycles
These elements/doshas, fluctuate through time and space as part of their own ritualistic cosmic practices. We add to this, the biological rhythm/circadian rhythm, the biological clock; the clock being that which tends to proceed as part of the phases of our lives such as the Kapha phase that starts from birth until the onset of Pitta which is puberty and adulthood, to Vata phase which is when the hormones change and we are seniors. We have the cycles of the moon, solar cycle, seasonal cycle, daily cycle and the rise and fall of the ocean tides. All of this being the play of elements to some degree. As we are aligned with the daily cycle we are essentially aligned with the rhythm and ritual of the day. With this, Ayurveda calls daily practices "Dinacharya."  As far as seasonal practices, Ayurveda defines it as "Ritucharya", which we will talk about in part two of the article. Dinacharya, is when we follow the flow of the day, per say.  I'm doing so, we set up ourselves for optimal health which is our divine right. With dinacharya we can observe the phases in which Vata, Pitta and Kapha govern the day.

  • Kapha Time From 6am-10am
  • Pitta Time From 10am-2pm
  • Vata Time From 2pm-6pm

 

We then progress from 6pm - 10pm with Kapha, 10pm - 2am Pitta and 2am - 6am being Vata.  Each aspect of the day correlates to different physiological functions and activities which the dinacharya practices support. Primarily, this is how the day unfolds. We rise during the earlier time of Kapha in the morning, having a light breakfast. We make our way to lunch which is the peak time of day when the sun is prominently in the sky and we are productive, also having the main meal of lunch. Then, winding down the day with productivity as we end the day with Vata and then having a supplemental supper a few hours before bed, during Kapha time. Pitta thereby takes over and reorganizes the body while organs such as the liver clean up. We enter into a deep pristine rest (usually) during Vata time and then come back full circle to Kapha time of morning.

It also important to note to significant auspicious times of day which are the periods of transition known as Brahma muhurta, which occurs around sunrise and sunset. Generally, the timing is approximately 45 minutes before and after, but this window overall. During this time, vedantic/yogic/Ayurvedic practices emphasize at least acknowledging this time with either some natural tendency as in walking mindfully in nature or simply focusing on the breath and meditating.

With Ayurveda, it is important to create a foundation of our health with how we follow this daily cycle. Vamadeva Shastra (Dr.David Frawley, internationally known Vedic Scholar and practitioner) says "To create a healthy tree, one must first nourish the root. The root of our lives is our lifestyle." By following the below routine we can begin to invite in good health. These are recommendations that I've suggested to my patients and have found much transformation in their lives by simply implementing these practices. There are various reasons that justify the why of these practices and that there is an overall alchemy that is sparked. You'll see for yourself as you start taking these steps. You'll feel better, more balanced and more connected to the bigger picture of life. How great is that?!

 

The Daily Routine ... 

Morning Rituals
I consider this one of the most important times of the day because we set the tone for how the rest of the day will unfold. It is the spring step forward. The cleansing time of day is the morning Kapha time. The body is generally ready to defecate and urinate. We have some mucus accumulated and the body releases it as we spit it up and release it from the oral cavity. We rinse/brush We bathe ourselves to cleanse the body from when the night caused us to become stagnant. Showering stimulates us because of the rapid force of water hitting the body. Though, showers can also deplete us due to its cleansing nature and nutrients are washed down the drain. Ideally, it's best to shower after we do our workout so we can wash the sweat that has internally caused a detoxification. It is also best to work out in the morning because we move lymphatic and energize the body. After showering we can then have breakfast and continue to work.

Here's an overall outline of how the morning is structured:
1) Awaken by 6:30/7am.
2) Tongue scrap
3) Brush your teeth
4) Rinse the face with cool water
5) Neti pot and/or Nasya oil administration
6) Take hot water (various forms)
7) Take some constitutional based herbs/vitamins
8) Exercise/yoga
9) Breathing techniques as per constitution
10) Meditation
11) Bathe
12) Breakfast (light meal)
13) Work

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Note: This may seem like a lot at first but when it becomes routine you'll see how second nature and fluid it becomes. Take your time implementing and over time it all comes together efficiently and easily. It may seem like a while in the morning at first but it gets quicker. I promise.

Afternoon Rituals
The next time of day that is most important, in its own way, is lunch time. Which is to be had between 10 and 2. Ideally around noon when the sun is at its peak and when digestive enzymes are the strongest. If we miss lunch, skip lunch or have lunch later, we eventually will notice mood issues and blood sugar imbalances, along with usual cravings. Cravings can also be an indicator of poor hydration. This is the one meal that we absolutely can not sacrifice. This is also the heaviest and main meal of the day. Bulk of proteins, especially meats, are especially digested this time of day. More so than dinner since digestion is stronger at lunch than at night. Proteins/carbohydrates/fats are consumed first. Followed by veggies. Approximately 30% of the food is protein and 10% is carbs. 60% are veggies. There is a not of variation from winter to summer where we increase proteins some due to climate demands. Cooked or raw based on seasonal considerations and constitutional. It is also important to sip hot water/tea. NO guzzling as this suppresses enzymatic activities. Sipping acts as a buffer and encourages the digestive juices to function better. Sipping feeds the fire but guzzling puts it out.

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

Snacking is generally avoided throughout the day because it can offset metabolic functions. Hot water or tea is recommended instead. Though, there are considerations to be made as per constitutional needs and based on how balanced digestion is. Sipping hot water or teas throughout the day encourages metabolism. Additionally, napping after a meal is contraindicated because it disrupts metabolism and slowly causes heaviness in digestion to increase. This begins to form Ama, which is toxin built up from undigested food. A good walk post lunch is good for supporting metabolism. Liquids or snacks, if this happens to be the case, shouldn't happen for at least an hour after lunch. Last sip and last bite is the last until an hour or so after. (This goes for dinner too!)

Here's the general outline for lunch:
1) Sit down to eat.
2) Take around 15-20 minutes to actually eat.
3) Largest meal preferably around noon.
4) Sipping tea/hot water with meal
5) Short walk
6) Eat the meal with minimal distraction. This includes not being on the phone or computer or even eating on the go. (No mindless eating.)
7) Return to duties.

Dinner Rituals
Dinner time is a supplemental meal, hence, called "supper time." The meal should be light. Proteins, Like eat, should be less this time of day. Grains and simpler proteins are fine. Heavy meals should be avoided.  I usually say half of what lunch is in portion and generally eaten around 6/7pm. This is because we are in Kapha time again and the digestive activities are generally less than lunch, significantly. This is because the body is preparing for rest. Cortisol is strongly surging earlier in the day gives rise to melatonin, around 2pm, that peaks around 10pm and this is the sleep chemical that helps us to fall asleep more gracefully and naturally. Therefore, going to bed with a full stomach only causes the meal not to be fully digested and allows for toxicity/Ama to build up and lymphatic issues which contributes to overall accumulation of symptoms like weight gain, to say the least. We feel heavy at night which isn't the desired heaviness we are seeking that aids us with sleep. Again, sipping hot water with the meal us recommended. Sipping hot water aids in the flushing of our lymphatic drainage system that is also responsible for our overall immunity. We sip hot water or tea with meals unless it consists of a soup or broth and then we have enough liquid at this time.

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Outline for dinner is as follows:
1) Sit to eat.
2) Eat with minimal distraction.
3) Light meal around 6/7.
4) Sip tea/hot water with meal.
5) Do the dishes and/or walk about for 10 - 15 minutes.

Note: Generally, on the rare occasion that a heavy meal can't be avoided, Ayurveda suggests fasting for breakfast and maybe just having tea or broth.

Sleep Time
Naturally and before the introduction of technologies that has not permitted us to be night owls, we would fall asleep not long after sunset. The body's innate tendency is to feel drowsy around 8/9pm. Anything outside of this is typically viewed as an imbalance in natures perfect design. We see in current research that staying up late adds to inflammation in the body. I've recently written another article on how sleep adds to inflammation. Inflammation adds to disease formation in the body and mind. Sleep time is outwardly passive time but inwardly active in the sense that the body is reorganizing itself and the mind can be less involved in worldly affairs. It is important to our overall health to ensure that sleep is regular and minimally imbalanced. Therefore, Ayurveda suggests being in bed around 10, ideally so we don't miss the window which then causes to get our "second wind", which really involves tapping into our liver energy that is meant to be inwardly metabolizing the entire days foods and activities so it can wrap everything up and send everything out through urine, feces and sweat. Known as the three Malas, or waste products. What isn't sent out is used by the body to rebuild and replenish itself. Sleep is vital. The bedroom should be a temple and silence, free of electronics is highly recommended as electromagnetic currents from such devices can negatively affect our nervous system and disrupt our quality of sleep.

Blissful Sleep
Blissful Sleep formula produce a calming, balancing effect on the body, mind and emotions. You’ll find sleep becoming deeper and more restful.

Post-dinner outline:
1) Unwind after dinner.
2) Prepare to go to bed by brushing the teeth and removing yourself from any engaging activities such as TV watching or stimulating conversations.
3) Maybe take a bath.
4) Maybe do some soothing breathing technique.
5 Lights out.

Note that if you are under the supervision of an Ayurvedic Practitioner, that if you are recommended to take herbs, take them accordingly. If there are herbs for lunch, take them as suggested. If there are herbs at night, take them as recommended. You'll be told where they fit into the above outlines.

Finally, Ayurveda has this template designed to help us realign with the subtle ritualistic experiences of the day.  Each day is a ritual in being alive and the day offers itself as part of it. As we integrate these suggestions we will notice great changes over time and on so many levels. Please know that this is a general guideline according to Ayurveda and of course adaptations are to be made because of our own individual lifestyles. For more information or support around tailoring a program that best fits your need it is recommended to schedule a consultation by a trained practitioner. The best protocol for you is available. Start incorporating some of these considerations and watch the changes in your health. You're worth it. Vamadeva Shastri shares this: "Sometimes clients tell me that they do not have the time for the Yoga or Ayurveda practices that I recommend to make them healthy. My answer is this: Does this mean that you have time to be sick?"  He further says "If we don't create a long-term wellness sustaining lifestyle for ourselves, nothing else that we do can be successful."

About The Author
Vishnu Om
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 Still Point Ayurveda
.

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.


The Social Media Detox - Yoga & Ayurveda Principles

 

The Social Media Detox 
By now, we are all aware that social media has a tremendous impact on our culture and the world-at-large. Social media has offered the wonderful opportunity for people to re-connect with their old friends and acquaintances. However, at the same time, has social media given us a false sense of connection? According to Cornell University professor, Steven Strogatz, social media sites can make it more difficult for us to distinguish between meaningful relationships we foster in the real world, and the numerous casual relationships formed through social media. By focusing so much of our time and energy on these somewhat less meaningful relationships, our most important connection, he fears, will weaken.

“What’s on your mind?”, asks FB.

We live in a world overrun by stress and anxiety. Although one could argue that feeling overstimulated is a result of anxiety, it also could be that the overstimulation is actually causing our anxiety. Overstimulation is defined as a state of over-arousal or being stimulated to an excessive degree which can actually damage the brain. Yep. This is serious. Therefore, the next time Facebook asks, “what’s on your mind?” - the answer should be ... “nothing”.

"What The Internet Is Doing To Our Brains." - Author Nicholas Carr

 

"Most of us are on the Internet on a daily basis and whether we like it or not, the Internet is affecting us. It changes how we think, how we work, and it even changes our brains. We interviewed Nicholas Carr, the author of, "The Shallows: What the Internet is Doing to Our Brains," about how the Internet is influencing us, our creativity, our thought processes, our ideas, and how we think." - Epipheo

The Social Media Detox:
1. Unplug - Pratyahara
2. Breathe - Pranayama
3. Nourish The Body
4. Protect The Brain
5. Enhance The Mind

For real rejuvenation to be possible, one should generally reduce all physical activity and exercise for at least a few days. Likewise, one should start with spending more time in nature or consider a retreat in nature or simply visiting an ashram.

 

1. Unplug
Rejuvenation of the mind rests firmly upon stillness. Interestingly, each one of us inherently possess the capacity to access and harness higher forms of energy within which is more than what we would normally access from the outer world. For example, pratyahara, which literally means “withdrawal” is a yogic practice which helps to provide a state of deep relaxation in which the nervous system can be rejuvenated. After all, silence, rest, solitude, or simply just unplugging and letting go - are all the foundation for deep relaxation and rejuvenation.

Eight Limbs of Yoga:

  1. Yama : Universal morality
  2. Niyama : Personal observance
  3. Asanas : Body postures
  4. Pranayama : Breathing exercises, and control of prana
  5. Pratyahara : Control of the senses
  6. Dharana : Concentration and cultivating inner perceptual awareness
  7. Dhyana : Devotion, Meditation on the Divine
  8. Samadhi : Union with the Divine

 

Unplugging.
Pratyahara is often compared to a turtle withdrawing its limbs into its shell– the turtle’s shell is the mind and the senses are the limbs. Therefore, simply close your eyes, relax your jaw, and bring your focus and attention inwardly. As you will soon come to realize, the breath and the mind are interrelated and by becoming more increasingly aware of the breath, the senses of the outer world soon begins to diminish.

"Just as a tortoise withdraws its limbs, so when a man withdraws his senses
from the sense objects, his wisdom becomes steady."
-Bhagavad Gita

Note:
Sense withdrawal means that the senses cease to be engaged or connected to the objects traveling in the train of the mind. It does not mean the suppression, repression, or stopping of those thoughts. They may naturally slow down or decrease to some degree, but the method itself is to break the contact, to cease connecting with the thought patterns. This means allowing thoughts to flow without interruption, while the senses are simply not diverted into those thoughts.

You will notice that as the senses withdraw, the mind awakens and becomes far more sensitive and intuitive. This newly awakened mind with greater sensitivity will now intuitively want to avoid overstimulation of the senses and will naturally just want to “be” - and what is a more natural state of being than breathing?

 

2. Honor Your Breath
According to Vedic text, we are given at birth a certain number of breaths as part of our human endeavor and the basis for living longer is - breathing slower. The fundamental aspect of life is the act of breathing and in Ayurvedic & Yogic thought, the breath is not just the air and the action of the lungs. Instead, the breath provides the life-force [“prana”] which is the subtle energy that vitalizes and rejuvenates us every moment of the day. That said, pranayama or yogic breathing is probably the most important rejuvenating practice that we can do on a daily basis. Therefore, after unplugging from the world of overstimulation it is now time to learn how to breathe in life-giving prana.

Take Notice Of Your Breath:

  • sit comfortably on a chair with your feet slightly apart
  • place your palms on the abdomen
  • feel how your abdomen expands as you inhale
  • feel how your abdomen contracts as you exhale
  • slowly breathe in deeper; slowly breathe out completely
  • bring your attention to this rhythm of life

 

Congratulations.
You are now becoming more aware.

 

3. Nourish The Body
Now that you are becoming more aware, let us now nourish the body and mind. According to Ayurveda, longevity and wellbeing depends largely upon not being weighed down but instead allowing the spirit to move freely within us. This requires a nourishing diet. Generally, a nourishing diet from an Ayurvedic perspective is considered a “sattvic diet” and includes good quality vegetarian food, including dairy products, whole grains, beans, vegetables, fruits and nuts. This sattvic diet helps to increase purity and clarity to the mind.

Organic Churnas
Ready-to-use spice mixtures satisfy the six ayurvedic tastes considered essential for balance and good digestion.

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

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

 

4. Protect The Brain
The human brain contains about 100 billion cells which continuously require oxygen. Because of this oxygen demand, the brain is particularly susceptible to oxidative damage; i.e. free radicals. Antioxidants are therefore crucial for longevity and continued effective functioning of the brain.

Amrit Kalash
Amrit Kalash is a powerful broad-spectrum antioxidant and contains Amalaki which is considered the richest natural source of vitamin C, along with a rich balance of other herbs. Amrit Kalash has been shown to be 1,000 times more potent as a free radical scavenger than vitamin C or E.

 

5. Enhance The Mind
Shirodhara is undoubtedly one of the most popular Ayurvedic treatments in the west. The word ‘shiro’ means head and ‘dhara’ means steady flow. Therefore, shirodhara involves pouring a steady stream of soothing oil over the forehead and acts as a method of relieving stress to the restless mind.

The Moving Mind
The science of Ayurveda speaks of vata as being the basis of all movement of the body and mind. When vata is in excess [within the mind] it can result in anxiety, nervousness, depression, insomnia and many other forms of difficulty handling stress. With nearly eighty percent of all diseases in the west being attributed to stress, it is no wonder why Shirodhara has been considered one of the most popular Ayurvedic treatments of modern day.

Organic Vata Calming Tea
Sweet, soothing choice to help restore balance quickly whenever life gets too hectic.

Creating Stillness
Shirodhara is a classical and a well-established ayurvedic procedure of slowly and steadily streaming medicated oil on the center of the forehead while resting quietly on a comfortable bed. Other liquids like coconut water, buttermilk, milk, etc. are also used depending on the individual need of the patient. Ultimately, this procedure helps to induce a relaxed state of awareness, mental clarity, and even thought to help produce improved “psychoneuroimmunology”; the ability to handle stress.

Stress Free Mind
Supports natural resistance to daily mental stress and fatigue; promotes peace, stability, and calmness under pressure.

Herbs – Enhancing The Mind
Ayurveda talks highly about a special class of herbs called “Medhya” herbs. Ultimately, by providing nourishment to the brain, these herbs are especially useful for the mind and helps to enhance learning while improving both the retention and recall of knowledge.

Intelligence Plus
Promotes natural intelligence; rejuvenates mental processes; supports attention span and concentration; promotes positive emotions and self-confidence.

Mind Plus
Stress and fatigue can diminish mental strength and clarity. Support mental functioning under stress and revitalize the mind with Mind Plus.

Organic Youthful Mind
Supports mental functioning as one ages; removes toxins that impede learning, memory, and recall; promotes the development of consciousness.

Benefits Of Meditation
It seems that research centered around the benefits of meditation have now been rolling in steadily validating the ancient wisdom common to both Ayurveda and Yoga. Ayurveda is an ancient science which literally means ‘the science of life’. A basic fundamental premise to both Ayurveda and Yoga is that – both a sound mind and sound body are integral to one’s overall health and well-being.

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

 

Want More?

Oil Massage
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

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.


The Alchemy Of Bliss - "Soma"

The Alchemy Of Bliss -  "Soma" 
We all want to be happy yet one of the most elusive questions which involves our day-to-day reality is “what does it mean to be happy?”. We also know that happiness is key for overall health and in one form or another we are all seeking it. Could it be that we are searching for happiness in all the wrong places? For many of us, happiness is in the next purchase - the bigger home, the nicer car, and the newer gadget. However, the teachings of Ayurveda explain that behind all these diverse pursuits is an aspiration for happiness at the core of our being. In other words, within each one of us resides a sense of bliss called “Ananda” which is lastingly satisfying, refreshing, and that which does not diminish nor die.

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

Blissful Heart Aroma
Helps to nourish and balance the emotions

Ananda [aa-nan-da] noun.
The condition of utter joy. Pure and absolute bliss.
An essential quality of the ultimate Reality (tattva).

Soma - The Nectar Of Immortality
According to the ancient vedic teachings of India, “Soma” was originally referred to as the nectar of immortality. Similarly, in other cultures, soma was conveyed as the “Holy Grail” being the ultimate quest for renewal and immortality. After all, we all want to live and do not want to die. In a way, Soma provides for ‘deathlessness’ and is the essence of all healing. The Ayurvedic concept of Soma is of vital importance for good immunity, longevity, and optimal health. For example, the classic teachings of Ayurveda discuss topics of rejuvenation [“rasayana”] which are lifestyle considerations to increase the quality of soma.

Soma - An Interview With Dr. Vasant Lad, MASc. 

An interview with Dr. Vasant Lad, author, Ayurvedic physician, professor and director of the Ayurvedic Institute in Albuquerque, New Mexico. Interview was filmed on April 4th, 2014, by Joey Bujold.

Lifestyle Considerations ...
The modern world unfortunately provides many of us the problem of a highly stressful lifestyle. However, rejuvenation requires nourishment at all levels. Of importance is nourishing food for the physical body and equally important, is nourishment for the mind in the form of adequate rest, sleep, and relaxation. For example, a “sattvic diet” which includes good quality vegetarian food such as dairy products, whole grains, beans, vegetables, fruits, and nuts which provide purity for the body and clarity to the mind.

Deep Rest & Blissful Sleep
Better sleep = better performance.

Digestive Health
Good health depends on strong, efficient digestion.

Organic Spice Selections
Ready-to-use spice mixtures satisfy the six ayurvedic tastes considered essential for balance.

The Elixir Of Life - Soma Beverages
From the ancient of times, there have been certain beverages which have been considered an elixir which helps to revitalize the core of our body while fortifying the mind. A Soma beverage is generally considered a liquid that is deeply refreshing, stress reducing, and calming to the mind.

Examples Of Soma Beverages Include:
- Amalaki Juice
- Coconut Juice
- Sugar Cane Juice
- Aloe Juice
- Fruit Juices
- Herbal Teas
- Milk

Amalaki Juice
The fresh juice of amalaki fruit is considered one of the best rejuvenatives according to Ayurveda. Simply add a couple of teaspoons of amalaki juice with some pomegranate juice and this is an excellent elixir for longevity.

Amrit Kalash
Full-spectrum antioxidant: targets mind & nervous system

Coconut Juice
Coconut juice provides hydration to all bodily tissues and provides natural sugars and nourishing oil for the brain and nervous tissue. Coconut juice also provides a cooling and refreshing quality to the mind.

Sugar Cane Juice
Not only is sugar cane juice delicious but is also considered a rejuvenative [“rasayana”] according to Ayurveda. Sugar cane juice is hydrating and helps to prevent fever, thirst, dryness, and fatigue.

Aloe Juice
Aloe juice is particularly beneficial to help reduce heat [“pitta”] from within the body and is also a wonderful nourishing drink for women to help tonify and strengthen the uterus.

Fruit Juices
Generally, fruit juices in moderation are natural Soma beverages. Certain fruit juices such as pomegranate, guava, mango, grape, and acai juices are particularly beneficial. To help reduce sugar intake, these juice can be diluted with water and generally should not be consumed during meals.

Herbal Teas
Herbal teas are considered Soma beverages more specifically to the mind rather than the body. Herbal teas such as Tulsi, Brahmi, Licorice, and Rose are very rejuvenating to the mind and help to bring clarity to the mind.

Ayurvedic Herbal Teas
Enjoy the exotic colors and aromas of spices can elevate an ordinary dish into a sublime feast for the senses of sight, smell and taste.

Milk
Milk has rejuvenating properties and is a beverage held with great reverence in vedic culture. Milk also helps to enhances the potency of other substances and other substances also help to benefit the rejuvenating qualities of milk. For example, adding a small amount of natural sugar, honey, or ghee increases the nourishing and rejuvenating qualities of milk. Milk also acts to carry the qualities of certain herbs and spices to deeper bodily tissues. For example, mixing certain herbs and spices like ginger and/or turmeric to milk will help to improve digestion, liver function, and elimination. Similarly, mixing saffron to milk is also considered a potent rejuvenator and helps strengthen the female reproductive tract.

Mind & Memory 
Stay focused & perform under pressure.
Maintain mental calm & alertness.

What About Alcohol?
Alcoholic beverages, particularly wine in small amounts have revealed some health benefits such as improving digestion and helping to reduce the risk of heart disease. Likewise, Ayurveda has a wide range of medicinal herbal wines such as Ashwagandha herbal wine which has rejuvenative and restoring properties. Medicinal herbal wines should be used with discretion and only as indicated by a qualified Ayurvedic professional.

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.


Endocrine Disruptors - A Reason For Weight Gain?

 

Endocrine Disruptors - A Reason For Weight Gain? 
Whether you’re trying to lose a lot weight or just shed a few extra stubborn pounds, do you ever wonder why getting the scale to go down often feels like an uphill battle? “We’re finding that weight management is much more complex than just energy-in versus energy-out,” says professor Jennifer Kuk who is a professor of health science at York University in Toronto. According to a study published in the journal Obesity Research & Clinical Practice, the researchers hypothesize that environmental factors, such as our food, chemical-filled personal care products, and increased stress, may play a major role in why we’re heavier now [compared to the 1970’s] when all other factors are the same.

“Maintaining a healthy weight is important for overall health
and can help you prevent and control many diseases and conditions.”
- National Institute Of Health; NIH

"Endocrine Disruptors" 
Despite eating healthy and attempting to minimize our exposure to chemicals, it’s still a challenge to avoid them completely. The reason why it’s difficult to avoid them is because they seem to be everywhere. For example, many chemicals such as pesticides, flame-retardants, and preservatives all have an affect on hormones and can often be a cause for the additional weight we seem to put on. Another study, published in the Journal of Developmental Origins of Health and Disease, found that exposure to bisphenol A (BPA) or ethinyl estradiol (EE) - two common “endocrine disruptors” in the mother’s womb results in a slower metabolism and lower activity in their offspring.

Interesting Video - Endocrine Disruptors Overview 

 

Our First Defense - “Agni”
As per Ayurveda, “Agni” is the cosmic fire - the principle of transformation of all substances and Ayurveda describes the underlying function of digestion and metabolism in our body as Agni [“Fire”]. Regarding the importance of Agni, the father of Ayurveda – Charak stated that when Agni of the individual is balanced then that person would be absolutely healthy and would lead a long, happy and healthy life. The first and foremost level of Agni is the digestive fire, which digests the food we consume. Even further, Agni represents all that we ‘take in’ - from the food we eat, to all sensory impressions we perceive, and all thoughts, feelings, and emotions we “digest”. In essence, our resilience depends upon the state of our Agni.

Improve Your Digestive Fire
Special Digestive Formulas To Help Improve Your Digestive Fire.

 

“The Fix”
The practical solution is to avoid exposure. We should take all reasonable steps to limit our exposure to chemicals which may be endocrine disruptors. For example, consider replacing vinyl shower curtains for a BPA-free replacement or consider storing food in glass containers rather than plastic containers.

"Major loopholes in federal law allow the… cosmetics industry to put unlimited amounts of phthalates into many personal care products with no required testing, no required monitoring of health effects, and no required labeling."
- Study by Environmental Working Group; 2002

Common Sources Of Endocrine-Disrupting Chemicals
Epoch Times recently compiled 10 common sources of endocrine disruptors, as well as what you can do about them.

Here are just a few ...

 

Personal Care Products. Shampoo, hair conditioners, moisturizers, and other personal care products often contain endocrine disruptors.
Drinking Water. Atrazine, arsenic, and perchlorate are three endocrine disruptors that pervade many communities’ drinking water supplies.
Canned Foods. Many cans are lined with BPA which are considered a common endocrine disruptor.
Cleaning Products. Common cleaning products often have a large amount of industrial chemicals which may act as endocrine disruptors. Instead, consider greener alternatives or even create your own cleaning products using non-toxic ingredients such as lemon, vinegar, and good old-fashioned soap.
Kitchen Products. Common kitchen appliances such as nonstick cookware, plastic wrap, and plastic containers may all contain endocrine disruptors; especially when heated.

An Ayurvedic Detox Program
For people who want a whole-body cleanse

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 is anti-inflammatory, antiseptic, and antibacterial and has long been used in the Indian system of medicine to treat a variety of conditions.

 

Panchakarma - An Ayurvedic Purification Process
Ayurveda is a life science which teaches an appropriate art of living in order to achieve longevity. Ayurveda explains unique methods to help guide each and every individual on how to maintain a healthy balance by considering simple changes in lifestyle, eating habits, and exercise. Ayurveda gives priority not only to preventive and therapeutic procedures but also to purification and rejuvenation therapies.

Nature’s Greatest Antioxidant!!
According to Ayurveda, Amalaki is considered one of the most nourishing and rejuvenating herbs. Amalaki is a strong natural antioxidant containing high levels of vitamin C and acts as a powerful immune strengthener. Amalaki is one of the best sources of natural vitamin C and contains 20 times more vitamin C than an orange.

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

Amrit Kalash: Full-spectrum antioxidant:
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.

A Few Stubborn Pounds?
From an Ayurvedic standpoint, weight gain occurs as a result of excess earth and water elements in the body. This creates sluggish/weak digestion which leads to low metabolism. Signs and symptoms associated with obesity include lethargy, breathlessness on exertion, excess sweating, excess thirst as well as weight gain. Usually the etiological factors of obesity are due to poor diet and lifestyle choices. The typical American diet is extremely counterproductive in the maintenance of good health. Fried foods, excess salty and sweet foods as well as sodas have become a part of the ‘norm’ in today’s society. The use of ice in drinks and the popular usage of frozen foods has also contributed to the rising levels of obesity.

There are some simple ayurvedic recommendations to target weight gain. However, it is important to note that each case is different and will require a more individualized approach to best suit ones needs. It is vital to establish the cause of obesity in each person as many different etiological factors can come into play. An individualized health plan created with ones own physician and practitioner is advised.

 

Easy & Healthy Considerations ...

 

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.


The Ayurveda Guide For Spring Season

 

The Ayurveda Guide For Spring Season
Spring is a time of new beginnings. This is a time when nature, once again, comes to life as flowers bloom, birds sing and people generally feel more energized. Often the first signs of spring, especially after a long cold winter, are described as God himself breathing new fresh life into his creation. In fact, Lord Krishna [in the Bhagavad Gita] explains when describing himself, “I am the Soul in the body, the mind in the senses, the eagle amongst birds and the lion amongst animals. Among all the trees I am the sacred bodhi tree, and of the season, I am spring.” More simply, spring is the king of all seasons. Similarly, Ayurveda is an ancient science of healthy living and takes into consideration the whole person. According to these teachings, every aspect of our life contributes to our overall health. By understanding that we are a miniature reflection of nature, we should live accordingly - in accordance to the natural rhythms of life; i.e. seasons.

“Spring is the king of all seasons.”

The Importance Of Transition ...
Healthy living is centered around creating a daily routine and a healthy routine helps to establish balance in our lives. In order to determine an appropriate routine, we first need to understand the significance of each season. The wisdom of Ayurveda, stresses great importance on the transition between two seasons. One can think of this transition as a door from one season to the next. As we pass through this transition, we should consider a new lifestyle and new attitude as we pass from the old season and enter into a new season. For example, the warmth of spring melts the winter snow which brings about moisture to the atmosphere. Similarly, Ayurveda speaks about the springtime warmth also melting the accumulated cold quality of “kapha dosha” which liquefies and often manifest as “hay fever” [i.e. nasal congestion, itchy and watery eyes, sneezing, postnasal drip, and cough].

Ayurvedic Liver Cleanse With Chandanni 

Toxins mask the miraculous intelligence of your body, creating health issues and discomfort instead of health. Yet toxic build-up is virtually unavoidable in today’s fast-paced world. Stressful jobs, environmental pollution and fast-food diets contribute to toxic waste in the body. And no matter how pure the food you eat, if your digestion is out of balance, your own body will create digestive toxins.

Elim-Tox-O is a gentle formula that helps cleanse your body’s natural purification systems without forcing, making it the recommended choice for people who have a tendency towards acne, heartburn, and excess stomach acid or who have a lot of "fire" in their physiology.

~Lifestyle Recommendations~

 

Do’s
The goal during spring season is to pacify kapha with foods that are light and easily digestible. Foods that are particularly bitter, pungent, and astringent as these tastes are considered kapha pacifying – or that which helps to reduce kapha.

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

Don’ts
Avoid food which are heavy and oily while minimizing tastes which are sweet, sour and salty – as these flavors increase kapha. Instead, we should consider foods which are pungent, bitter, astringent – since these tastes naturally help to reduce kapha.

Examples Springtime foods – which help pacify kapha

  • Legumes: split pea, red lentils, chickpeas, pinto beans
  • Grains: amaranth, barley, buckwheat, corn, millet, oats, quinoa, rye
  • Fruits: apples, apricots, berries, cherries, mangoes, peaches, pomegranates, pears
  • Veggies: artichoke, asparagus, beets, broccoli, carrots, okra, spinach

 

Diet
It is advised to have easily digestible food which are low in calories during the spring season since the digestion power of “Agni” is diminished. Ayurveda believes that all diseases are primarily due to a faulty digestion. It is also now well understood that the gastrointestinal system is a major organ of immunity.

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

Herbal Di-Gest
Supports improved digestion and balanced appetite; helps with gas, bloating, and discomfort.

TRIKATU – Digestive herbal formula …
Trikatu is a formula combination of equal parts ginger, black pepper and pippali. The name trikatu means three peppers or the three pungents. It is a wonderful herb with strong digestive properties.

Hot water. Drinking sips of hot water also helps improve digestion. Kapha is predominant during the daytime especially from 6 am to 10 am so it’s best to avoid eating a heavy breakfast at this time. Instead, consider eating a healthy and light breakfast during spring; particularly is suffering from allergies. It is best if one avoids cold, oily foods & excessive sweet or sour foods.

Honey. Honey is thought to have a “scrapping effect” and small amounts of raw honey is considered beneficial to help reduce kapha. Therefore, a good consideration for sweeteners during spring season is honey.

Herbal Teas. Since coolness and moisture are still within the atmosphere and before we fully experience the heat of summer, it’s of benefit to consider having warming teas such as ginger, cinnamon, cardamom, and clove tea during spring.

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

Herbs & Spices
A few herbs which could be used to reduce kapha and fight the allergies during spring season are spices, which can be added to your food such as turmeric, fresh ginger, garlic, onions, and horseradish.

Turmeric is a common spice found in almost every kitchen in many Asian countries like India. Amongst its countless roles, turmeric is commonly used for cosmetic and coloring purposes. Turmeric is widely utilized in Ayurvedic Medicine in treating allergies, immune conditions, liver diseases and neurological disorders. It is considered a holy, auspicious and natural healer. Helps purify the blood and acts as an antioxidant; supports healthy heart, liver, lungs, circulation and nervous system. Turmeric is one of the oldest, most important spices known to humankind.

Fresh ginger. Fresh ginger tea is prepared by boiling fresh ginger in water also reduces the kapha, honey could be added to this tea. Ginger has properties which help in reducing fevers, soothes sore throats, and encourages coughing to remove mucus from the chest. The chemicals shagaols and gingerols in ginger give it that spicy kick that stimulates blood circulation and opens your sinuses. Improved circulation means that more oxygen is getting to your tissues to help remove toxins and viruses. Research from the Toyama Medical and Pharmaceutical University in Japan indicated ginger has the ability to help prevent and treat flu infections.

Garlic.  Garlic is well known throughout history as a food that fights infections from bacteria and viruses. The BBC reported in 2007 that garlic can help prevent and fight the common cold. Allicin is one of the immune stimulating nutrients in garlic that is released when you cut, chop or crush the cloves. Garlic stimulates the activity of immune system cells that destroy cold and flu viruses.

5 More Simple Health Tips
1. Exercise regularly and avoid sleeping in daytime can help to prevent kapha accumulation. Exercise appears to have the advantage of being able to jump-start the immune system, and that can help reduce the number of colds one gets. With exercise, the number and aggressiveness of certain immune cells, such as the ones called natural killer cells, increase by as much as 50% to 300.

2. Avoid exposure to direct air as this will help to reduce kapha and will also reduce the chance of being exposed to pollen and other allergen’s.

3. Massage. Oil massage and dry massage should be done regularly. Herbal bath will also help. Herbs like sandal wood which have a cooling effect also help in strengthening the body and improving the Immunity.

Ayurvedic 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.

4. Nasya
‘Nasya’ is an Ayurvedic practice that involves administering herbal oils to the nasal passage. Commonly such treatments are known to clear sinus congestion, help clear accumulated toxins from the head and neck region. In Ayurveda, nasya is one of the important self-care methods which brings about internal detoxification. It is a part of an ‘Ayurvedic Daily Routine’ by putting 3-5 drops of warm ghee or sesame seed oil into each nostril in the morning.

5. Panchakarma – The Ultimate Detox
Finally, it is generally considered beneficial to do panchakarma during pre-spring period under the guidance of a qualified professional. Panchakarma or five therapeutic treatments.

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The ancient wisdom of Ayurveda sees each person as not being a set of parts, but as a whole and for one to be considered healthy – the body, mind, and consciousness must be balanced. Ayurveda is one of the world’s oldest and comprehensive systems of natural medicine and the core teachings of Ayurveda is centered around creating lifestyle habits for overall good health and wellbeing.

 

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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.


The Role Of The Ayurvedic Professional

 

The Role Of The Ayurvedic Professional
To some degree, we all are in need of healing. Similarly, to some degree - we all suffer. That said, the living and breathing science of Ayurveda acknowledges that the human body has an incredible ability to heal. Of course, there are times when healing is not possible. Of importance, the science of Ayurveda evolved from the contemplative minds of ancient seers for the intention to heal all of humanity. For thousands of years, these teachings were passed down from teacher to disciple. Fortunately, Ayurveda remains alive today and is more relevant now than ever before. Ultimately, Ayurveda helps to facilitate the inborn intelligence of the body so that the body may heal itself and once again become whole; i.e. wholesome & holy.

“Be Realistic; plan for a miracle.” - Osho

Ayurvedic Professionals
Miracles occur all the time. In fact, all of life is a miracle. When the body and mind are aligned in accordance to the power of nature, healing occurs spontaneously. The role of the Ayurvedic professional is to help guide you on your journey of life and to help lay the foundation for healthy living. More importantly, the role of a qualified Ayurvedic professional is to help bring you more in tune with nature by following a daily routine [“dinacharya”] which is essential for establishing health, vitality, and the overall sense of wellbeing. For example, a proper morning routine can help generate the sense of peace which can then be carried throughout your day even despite the disarray of modern living.  Likewise, it’s important to assess any imbalances in consideration to your natural constitution before initiating a daily routine; hence the importance of a qualified Ayurvedic professional.

What To Expect During An Ayurvedic Consultation

 

The Ayurvedic Consultation
The initial consultation involves a thorough examination allowing the consultant to identify key symptoms and potential causes of imbalance and to eventually determine suitable food and lifestyle recommendations.

Observation [Darshan]:
An Ayurvedic practitioner is able to evaluate the state of health simply by looking at the patient and observing his/her movements, body contour, color of the skin and eyes, facial lines and ridges, shape of the nose, and various other features of the lips, hair, and nails.

Touch [Sparsha]:
The practitioner then employs touch, including palpation called sparshanam in Ayurveda, auscultation, which implies listening for sounds of the internal organs (shrvanaa), and percussion or tapping (akotana). There is also special attention on evaluating the patient’s pulse, tongue, nails, and speech. Laboratory testing may also be included under this category.

Questions [Prashna]:
The practitioner will then ask the patient about presenting signs and symptoms, as well as the duration of discomfort as well as any other associations related to the disease progression. The practitioner will also inquire further into the overall lifestyle of the patient.

 

Pulse.
Taking the pulse is a way to determine one’s constitution and current state of real-time imbalances. The Ayurvedic consultant feels for the strength of vata, pitta, and kapha in the pulse. The practitioner looks for the overall qualities of the pulse.

vata is felt under the index finger with dry, light, and cold qualities
pitta in the middle finger with hot, sharp, and bounding qualities
kapha under the ring finger with slow, soft, and steady qualities

 

Tongue.
When examining the tongue, the consultant looks at the color and shape of the tongue while checking the presence of scallops on the sides of the tongue, any excessive movement, the presence of coating and/or cracking of the tongue, etc.

Coating on the tongue often indicates the presence of “ama”, or poorly digested food, still present in the digestive system. The location [i.e. anterior 1/3, middle 1/3, posterior 1/3] and color of the coating on the tongue provides information on the type and location of ama within the digestive system; i.e. stomach, small intestine, colon.

Simple Tips To Improve Digestion
Ayurvedic Remedies To Improve Digestion

Size, Shape, & Color
Generally, a thin, pointed tongue is more prevalent in vata dosha. Pitta often has more redness to the tongue and kapha generally has a large, round-tipped tongue. Scalloped edges on the sides of the tongue (teeth impressions) may indicate possible malabsorption or malnutrition.

Tongue Self-Assessment
First thing in the morning stick out your tongue and consider performing an Ayurvedic self-assessment. Question whether there is coating on the tongue and, if so – what color is the coating? Generally, white is an indication of kapha imbalance in the digestive system, yellow or green implies pitta imbalance, and brown being a vata imbalance. It‘s important to remove this coating every morning by gently scraping from the back to the front of the tongue, three to five times. By gently scraping the tongue this helps to stimulate the digestive system and help to remove digestive waste.

 

Feces.
Although uncomfortable to discuss, discussing characteristics of stool and one’s bowel movements reveals important information about digestive health. Generally, we should eliminate every morning often upon waking or even within one hour of waking. Ideally, the bowel movement should have no strain nor discomfort and be the consistency of a banana.

– constipation likely indicates the dry qualities of vata.
– loose stools likely indicates the oily nature of pitta
– sticky and sludgy stools may indicate the heavy qualities of kapha.

Simple Recommendation
To help stimulate and cleanse the digestive system, begin the day by sipping warm water with lemon.
To Learn The Benefits Of Sipping Hot Water & Preventing ‘Metabolic Syndrome’

 

Urine.
The color, volume, and frequency of urine can also indicate whether one is properly hydrated.

– scanty urine may reveal the presence of dry qualities of vata dosha
– hot and increased odor of urine may reveal the presence of pitta dosha
– cloudy urine may indicate excess kapha dosha
– pain or discomfort could indicate a more complicated concern

Ayurvedic management may include, but is not limited to: dietary changes, exercise program [i.e. yoga], lifestyle changes, herbs, and stress prevention [i.e. meditation]. The personalized strategy aims to help simplify, harmonize and energize one’s life in order to regain balance – in essence, reduce stress, balance weight, support moods, crave healthier foods, promote immunity, calm the mind, and enjoy more vitality.

Disclaimer:
This is strictly for educational purpose only. Always first discuss with your primary care physician before considering any new health regimen. Healthy Ayurveda acts as a third party healthcare advocate by providing education centered around basic principles of healthy living. Our sole purpose is to help provide greater awareness about the ancient science of Ayurveda and does not take any responsibility regarding recommendations provided by Ayurvedic professionals.


Avoid Allergies While Transitioning Into Spring Season

 

Transitioning Into Spring Season
The transition between seasons welcomes a new change and this new change invites a different way of life from the old season by entering afresh into the next season. Spring is a season of growth and new potential. In fact, spring is considered the king of all seasons. Of relevance, in the Bhagavad Gita - 11th chapter, Krishna while stating his strength says, “among all the trees I am the sacred pippala [Bodhi tree] and of the season - I am Spring.” This is because spring is the season in which all of nature wakes up as the birds sing, flowers bloom, and people generally feel energized as we emerge from winter. In essence, spring is a time of growth and a time to begin a new lifestyle. However, before adapting to a new way of life, we must first appreciate the qualities of spring and adapt in accordance.

Qualities Of Spring - "Moisture"

Spring can be likened to the freshness of water from the recently melted snow of winter. Because of this, there is still much moisture in the atmosphere and kapha [which is primarily water and earth] tends to be aggravated during spring season. As a result of all this moisture, excess accumulation of kapha within the body begins to liquefy and run out of the body as many people experience “spring fever” and allergies this time of year.

Ayurvedic Remedies For Spring Allergies - Madhuri Melanie Phillips

 

It is a known fact that spring is the time of year for seasonal allergies. As the trees start to bloom and the pollen is released into the atmosphere, allergy sufferers begin their annual ritual of sniffling and sneezing. Each year, 58 million Americans fall prey to seasonal allergic rhinitis, more commonly known as “hay fever”. Furthermore, during spring the climate gets warmer and the heat reduces the digestive power of body. As a result, kapha increases which leads to various conditions like cough, cold, allergies, sinusitis, and indigestion to name a few. Ayurveda, the ancient science of life, has the solution. Ayurveda explains the concept of Ritucharya. In Sanskrit, the word “Ritu” means “seasons” and the word charya means “to follow a routine”. Hence, Ritucharya is the Seasonal Routine and by following a seasonal lifestyle & diet routine, people can prevent certain seasonal ailments and can ultimately have a  healthy life . As per Ayurveda, the duration from mid-March to mid-May constitutes the Vasant Ritu or Spring season.

Lifestyle Recommendations

Do’s
The goal during spring season is to pacify kapha with foods that are light and easily digestible. Foods that are particularly bitter, pungent, and astringent as these tastes are considered kapha pacifying - or that which helps to reduce kapha.

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

Don’ts
Avoid food which are heavy and oily while minimizing tastes which are sweet, sour and salty - as these flavors increase kapha. Instead, we should consider foods which are pungent, bitter, astringent - since these tastes naturally help to reduce kapha.

Examples Springtime foods - which help pacify kapha

  • Legumes: split pea, red lentils, chickpeas, pinto beans
  • Grains: amaranth, barley, buckwheat, corn, millet, oats, quinoa, rye
  • Fruits: apples, apricots, berries, cherries, mangoes, peaches, pomegranates, pears
  • Veggies: artichoke, asparagus, beets, broccoli, carrots, okra, spinach  

 

Diet
It is advised to have easily digestible food which are low in calories during the spring season since the digestion power of “Agni” is diminished. Ayurveda believes that all diseases are primarily due to a faulty digestion. It is also now well understood that the gastrointestinal system is a major organ of immunity.

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

Herbal Di-Gest
Supports improved digestion and balanced appetite; helps with gas, bloating, and discomfort.

 

TRIKATU - Digestive herbal formula ...
Trikatu is a formula combination of equal parts ginger, black pepper and pippali. The name trikatu means three peppers or the three pungents. It is a wonderful herb with strong digestive properties.

Hot water. Drinking sips of hot water also helps improve digestion. Kapha is predominant during the daytime especially from 6 am to 10 am so it’s best to avoid eating a heavy breakfast at this time. Instead, consider eating a healthy and light breakfast during spring; particularly is suffering from allergies. It is best if one avoids cold, oily foods & excessive sweet or sour foods.

Honey. Honey is thought to have a “scrapping effect” and small amounts of raw honey is considered beneficial to help reduce kapha. Therefore, a good consideration for sweeteners during spring season is honey.

Herbal Teas. Since coolness and moisture are still within the atmosphere and before we fully experience the heat of summer, it’s of benefit to consider having warming teas such as ginger, cinnamon, cardamom, and clove tea during spring.

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

 

Herbs & Spices
A few herbs which could be used to reduce kapha and fight the allergies during spring season are spices, which can be added to your food such as turmeric, fresh ginger, garlic, onions, and horseradish.

Turmeric is a common spice found in almost every kitchen in many Asian countries like India. Amongst its countless roles, turmeric is commonly used for cosmetic and coloring purposes. Turmeric is widely utilized in Ayurvedic Medicine in treating allergies, immune conditions, liver diseases and neurological disorders. It is considered a holy, auspicious and natural healer. Helps purify the blood and acts as an antioxidant; supports healthy heart, liver, lungs, circulation and nervous system. Turmeric is one of the oldest, most important spices known to humankind.

Fresh ginger. Fresh ginger tea is prepared by boiling fresh ginger in water also reduces the kapha, honey could be added to this tea. Ginger has properties which help in reducing fevers, soothes sore throats, and encourages coughing to remove mucus from the chest. The chemicals shagaols and gingerols in ginger give it that spicy kick that stimulates blood circulation and opens your sinuses. Improved circulation means that more oxygen is getting to your tissues to help remove toxins and viruses. Research from the Toyama Medical and Pharmaceutical University in Japan indicated ginger has the ability to help prevent and treat flu infections.

Garlic.  Garlic is well known throughout history as a food that fights infections from bacteria and viruses. The BBC reported in 2007 that garlic can help prevent and fight the common cold. Allicin is one of the immune stimulating nutrients in garlic that is released when you cut, chop or crush the cloves. Garlic stimulates the activity of immune system cells that destroy cold and flu viruses.

Onions. They contain quercetin, a nutrient that breaks up mucus in your head and chest while boosting your immune system.When the smell of raw onions makes your nose run and your eyes tear up, this stimulates your immune system to fight infection. Onions also contain allicin which slows down and kills a variety of viruses and bacteria. The pungency of onions increases your blood circulation and makes you sweat. This effect is helpful during cold weather to prevent infections and to sweat out a cold or flu.

Horseradish. Horseradish strengthens your immune system and increases blood flow to parts of your body irritated by cold and flu infections to remove wastes. This pungent food encourages you to flush out infected fluids through sweat and increased urination.

 

5 More Simple Health Tips 
1. Exercise regularly and avoid sleeping in daytime can help to prevent kapha accumulation. Exercise appears to have the advantage of being able to jump-start the immune system, and that can help reduce the number of colds one gets. With exercise, the number and aggressiveness of certain immune cells, such as the ones called natural killer cells, increase by as much as 50% to 300.

2. Avoid exposure to direct air as this will help to reduce kapha and will also reduce the chance of being exposed to pollen and other allergen’s.

3. Massage. Oil massage and dry massage should be done regularly. Herbal bath will also help. Herbs like sandal wood which have a cooling effect also help in strengthening the body and improving the Immunity.

Ayurvedic 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.

4. Nasya
‘Nasya’ is an Ayurvedic practice that involves administering herbal oils to the nasal passage. Commonly such treatments are known to clear sinus congestion, help clear accumulated toxins from the head and neck region. In Ayurveda, nasya is one of the important self-care methods which brings about internal detoxification. It is a part of an ‘Ayurvedic Daily Routine’ by putting 3-5 drops of warm ghee or sesame seed oil into each nostril in the morning.

5. Panchakarma - The Ultimate Detox
Finally, it is generally considered beneficial to do panchakarma during pre-spring period under the guidance of a qualified professional. Panchakarma or five therapeutic treatments.

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.