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.


“Prajnaparadha” - Is Ignorance The Root Cause Of All Disease?

 

Is Ignorance The Root Cause Of All Disease?
Man is a trinity of body, mind, and Soul and life as a whole is designed to promote human happiness, health, and growth. That said, the question naturally arises - what is the root cause of disease? According to Ayurveda, disease is often the end result of a long process and can actually be detected and addressed at the early stage of development; hence prevention being better than a cure. More simply, disease is an imbalance. Ayurveda explains that the disease process begins with disturbances in the balance of the doshas; i.e. bodily humors.

“Health results from the natural, balanced state of the doshas.
Therefore, the wise try to keep them in their balanced state.” – Charak Samhita

 

“Ignorance Is Not Bliss.”
We email. We google. We tweet. And of course, we facebook. In this incredible age of technology, our senses have been taken over by constant sensory stimulation. According to Ayurveda, excessive indulgence in any physical or mental activity results in excess vata which may then ] create an imbalance in the release of neurotransmitters thereby overtaxing both the central nervous and endocrine systems. As a result, this can be considered the underlying cause of certain vata imbalances such as insomnia, anxiety, irregular digestion, constipation, etc.

Lifestyle Medicine: Treating The Causes Of Disease

 

Three Major Causes Of Disease

  • wrong use of the senses
  • mistake of the intellect
  • environmental, climate & age

 

1. Wrong Use Of The Senses
Thousands of years ago, the ancient wisdom of Ayurveda has explained the Sanskrit term “asatmyendriyartha samyoga” which simply implies the wrong use or misuse of the senses. For example, excessive indulgence (ati yoga), misuse (hina yoga), and perverse use (mithya yoga) of the senses are considered the major causes of disease.

The Moving Mind
The concept of vata originates from the Sanskrit word “vyv” [vaya] which implies ‘that which moves things’  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.

Stress Free Emotions
Stress Free Emotions supports natural resistance to emotional stress and fatigue. Diet, daily habits and ongoing stress are key factors that can contribute to imbalances in mind and body, leading to feelings of sadness and physical fatigue.

Worry Free
Calms the mind and emotions; supports clarity of mind and deeper sleep; natural support for everyday stress and tension.

Creating Stillness
Ayurveda describes in great detail the benefits of daily oil massage. Not only is massage comforting to the body but essential for overall health and well-being. A dry stick easily breaks but if you soak the same stick in oil it soon becomes flexible. The same happens to the human body. The influence of vata makes the body dry, brittle, and achy via the aging process. Therefore, daily oil massage helps maintain proper functions of the body and ultimately helps to reduce the effects of aging. 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.

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.

Blissful Joy
Your mind and body already know how to create inner happiness — they just need a little support. You can rejuvenate your emotions with Blissful Joy herbal supplement.

The 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 …

 

2. Mistake Of The Intellect
Ayurveda explains “prajnaparadha” as being a mistake of the intellect and is considered the root cause of all diseases. For example, one may choose to indulge in behaviors such as eating too much, consuming unhealthy food, and working too much which will naturally contribute to the root cause of disease. In essence, the root cause of disease originates by making one’s lifestyle choices only in terms of the five senses, rather than considering life as a whole - considering the body, mind, and Soul. The ancient wisdom of Ayurveda helps to reveal natural principles in order to help determine lifestyle choices that influence health and wellbeing. In other words, helping to live according to natural principles which support the innate intelligence of the body.

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

 

3. Environmental, Climate & Age
Once again, according to the science of Ayurveda, disease is considered to be an imbalanced state of the doshas and changes in the environment, climate, and age can all affect the doshas. For example, Ayurveda nicely describes the three phases of life — as being kapha, pitta, the vata stages of life.

Kapha
The first phase begins with Kapha, the “Spring Type.” We all begin in the womb, a womb of sorts, and this environment is very watery. We establish the solidity of earth known as immunity. This happens from in utero and until the onset of puberty — traditionally from birth and until 15. The word “kapha” means to grow, to create form. It is anabolic. “Mother’s milk” is the primary substance that nurtures the body and mind, establishing immunity. Kapha governs immunity.

Pitta
The next phase is Pitta, the “Summer Type.” Pitta begins with puberty, where testosterone and estrogen further transform the body and mind. Pitta means “that which transforms and digests.” The average age used to be 15, but now is much earlier and lasts until between 45-50. Testosterone is high in men and estrogen is prominent in women, and appetites and metabolism increase. Pitta is about metabolism and governs the endocrine system and digestive system. Sex drive increases. Pitta phase is about establishing and exerting oneself in the world through identity, like the sun wanting to be seen more.

Vata
The last stage is Vata, the “Fall Type.” Vata begins when the processes andropause and menopause initiate. Andropause is the decline of testosterone in men, with an increase in estrogen, and menopause is the decrease of estrogen and an increase in testosterone in women. The poles reverse here. Sex drive slows down. Appetite diminishes. Vata governs the nervous system and sleep quantity and quality changes. This is a more delicate and sensitive time. This time ends when the last breath is taken.

Environmental - ex. GMOs
More and more studies reveal more evidence that GMOs should have been banned before they were even allowed on the market.

“. . . glyphosate disrupts the ability of animals, including humans, to detoxify xenobiotics. This means that exposures to the numerous chemicals in food and the environment, such as endocrine disrupting chemicals and carcinogens, could be causing levels of damage that would not occur if the body were able to detoxify them.”

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

 

Last Point!
Finally, one of the most common cause of disease according to Ayurveda is due to “vegavarodh” which is the suppression of ‘natural urges’ such as micturition, defecation, hunger, and sleep, etc. Interestingly, both the wrong use of the senses [“asatmyendriyartha samyoga”] and the mistake of the intellect [“prajnaparadha”] creates “vegavarodh” - being the suppression of natural urges and creating obstructions to proper flow of the body.

“Life is a series of natural and spontaenous changes. Don’t resist them - that only creates sorrow. Let reality be reality. Let things flow naturally forward in whatever way they like.”

- Lao Tzu

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.


How To Reduce Stress & Improve The Sense Of Wellbeing

 

How To Reduce Stress 
There is no event in life which is intrinsically stressful. However, stress by which we mean psychological stress may not be any more “real” than any other thought within the mind. Likewise, not all stress is considered equal and not all stress need be harmful. For example, it’s only natural to feel the excitement about an upcoming event [i.e. your wedding] while at the same time feel nervous. Interestingly, this motivated yet stressful state of the mind is sometimes referred to as eustress, or “good stress” which may be beneficial for meaningful and purposeful action. However, if this state of stress or heightened state of arousal goes unchecked - we often can feel stressed out!

“Wherever a thought goes, a chemical goes with it.”
- Deepak Chopra

Tulsi - The #1 Ayurvedic Herb For Stress By David Wolfe

Tulsi
Tulsi, also known as "Holy Basil," has been used by many cultures around the world for thousands of years. Described in the Vedas as the most sacred holy plant of India, it was traditionally used in religious ceremonies, ayurvedic formulas, and called "the wonder herb".

Ojas - The Chemical Of Bliss
According to Ayurveda, ojas is referred to as the source of vitality, immunity and provides the sense of well-being. Having strong ojas helps maintain optimum health and many diet and lifestyle factors can contribute to either depleting or nourishing one’s ojas. Low ojas and low immunity result from the same cause; excess physical and psychological stress. It is well established that the brain is the center for interpreting and integrating perception and that the autonomic nervous system modulates the stress response. Modern science also recognizes that chronic stress can cause cumulative effects of neural, endocrine, and immune stress mediators which may have adverse effects on various organ systems resulting in adverse health consequences.

Blissful Joy
Blissful Joy nourishes the mind-body connection by helping to remove toxins that make you feel dull or sad, by supporting the memory of bliss in your cells, and by helping to balance hormones that govern emotions. The result is a renewed feeling of energy and happiness — and an overall sense of well-being. Situations that used to cause stress will be easier to handle. You’ll find yourself responding to life’s challenges — big and small — with a new outlook.

"Too Blessed To Be Stressed" - Bliss

Calming The Restless Mind
Research strongly suggests that people who suffer from “hurry-sickness” which is the anxious feeling of always rushing as if there’s never enough time may be more likely to develop health related problems such as high blood pressure and heart disease. According to Ayurveda, this sense of worry and stress arises because we lose connection with our true nature and innermost needs. The wisdom of Ayurveda states that once your body, mind, and heart all want the same things, a natural state of bliss and sense of wellbeing occurs spontaneously.

The Body
On the physical level, stress can generate free radicals. Free radicals are reactive, unstable, and damaging which can disrupt normal cellular activity. For example, free radicals can wreak havoc on the brain, nervous system, heart, and overall immunity. This stresses the importance and benefit of antioxidants!!

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

The 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.

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

 

Nourishing 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.

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 balancing the mind, reducing stress, and helps to enhance learning.

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 …

 

Shirodhara – The Most Popular Ayurveda Treatment
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.

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.

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.


Natural Ways To Manage Stress + Herbs To Enhance The Mind

Healthy & Natural Ways To Manage Stress
Stress is inevitable and we all respond to stress differently as there’s no “one size fits all” solution to managing stress. It’s as if stress walks in and out of our lives on a regular basis and at times - walks all over us. Fortunately, the ancient wisdom of Ayurveda identifies three important pillars of good health which are needed in order to achieve a state of wholeness and balance.

  • Diet
  • Sleep
  • Lifestyle

 

Healthy Diet
According to Ayurveda, perfect health begins with perfect digestion. Ayurveda speaks of the digestive fire ("Agni"), located in the stomach, as being the primary location where either health or disease begins. According to Ayurveda mostly all diseases start in the digestive system; this also includes the mind since the mind also digests and transforms information that we percieve.
Simple Tips For Healthy Digestion

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

Sound Sleep
Sleep is one of the fundamental mainstays in Ayurveda. It is vital to sleep the appropriate hours at specific times in order to achieve balanced health. Sufficient sleep has tremendous health benefits including relieving stress, anxiety and restoring vitality. Before bed, try a boiled cup of milk made with a touch of ginger and sugar, Organic Rose Petal Spread, or raw honey to help relax the mind and promote falling asleep easily.

Slumber Time Tea
Helps disengage the mind from the senses to fall asleep easily and wake up refreshed and alert.

Slumber Time Aroma Oil
Diffuse a little before you go to bed, this enchanting blend of six pure essential oils will relax you for hours. Includes sweet orange, marjoram, lavender and jasmine.

Lifestyle
Daily routine [“Dinacharya”] is a vital and integral part of our state of health. A routine that is followed with care and awareness with respect to our individual constitution and balance will bring many health benefits. In Ayurveda there are certain steps to starting the day, and whilst these can take up some time, they are valuable in their relation to boosting vitality.
Daily Routine to Perfect Health

What Is Stress?  

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

Shirodhara – The Most Popular Ayurveda Treatment
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.

Nourishing 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.

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.

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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 …

 

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 Ayurvedic Guide For The New Year - New Year’s Resolutions

The Ayurvedic Guide For The New Year 
With the New Year slowly nearing and with the holiday season already upon us, many of us are reevaluating some of our own personal life choices. The New Year has always provided a perfect opportunity to look back at the past and more importantly, to look forward to the coming year. According to ancient teachings of Ayurveda, every aspect of our life contributes to our overall health and well-being. In essence, Ayurveda considers good health as being a state of balance. By obtaining this unique state of balance and well-being we can resolve nearly all the common New Year’s Resolutions.

Top New Year’s Resolutions
1. Eat Healthy
2. Lose Weight
3. Stress Less
4. Improve Relationships

New Year Message From Sadhguru - Come Alive

1. Eat Healthy
How you eat is as important as what you eat. Likewise, we have all heard the saying, “you are what you eat”. Though true, it would be more accurate to say, “you are what you digest, absorb, and assimilate”. According to Ayurveda, the key to understanding health and vitality is centered around how to optimize the function our digestive fire called “Agni”.

The Digestive Fire - “Agni”
It’s interesting that most digestive disorders begin with poor food combining. According to Ayurveda, poor food combinations may disturb the normal functioning of the digestive fire [“Agni”]. Therefore, Ayurveda considers eating according to one’s unique body type [i.e. dosha], according to the season, and following basic principles to optimize the function of the digestive flame, “Agni”.

Basic Principles For Optimal 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

Herbal Supplements

Herbal di-gest supports improved digestion and balanced appetite; helps with gas, bloating, and discomfort. Similarly, Organic Digest Tone  also supports the digestive system and elimination; assists body in absorbing nutrients; high-quality antioxidant; wide range of benefits.

Ginger is an extremely effective digestive herb. Drinking ginger tea or even consuming ginger pickle before a meal is a beneficial way to help kindle digestion. Before a meal take ½ tsp of chopped ginger with a pinch of salt and a few drops of lime juice. Finally, another effective digestive herb is Trikatu. This herb is equal parts of ginger, black pepper and pippali. Taking ½ tsp of this herb with a pinch of garlic powder and a pinch of rock salt before meals aids digestion.

2. Lose Weight
According to Ayurveda, excess weight is often due to increase kapha which may cause decreased metabolism and weaken agni. Weak agni leads to the condition whereby even very small amounts of food tend to cause weight gain. What happens in this case is that weak agni allows "ama" (impurities) to be created, which accumulates in fat tissue. The Ayurvedic solution is to balance agni, increase the metabolic rate and eliminate the ama. Exercise helps to burn ama and increases circulation and metabolism. Walking briskly 30 minutes a day, or other activities such as dancing, swimming, biking, hiking or weight training, are all recommended.

Following a diet that stimulates digestion and reduces Kapha by favoring astringent, bitter and pungent tastes and reducing salty, sweet and sour foods will also help balance agni. The spices found in Organic Kapha Churna Spice Mix can help to balance Kapha and weak agni. Be Trim Tea is an herbal infusion that supports a normal, balanced appetite. The Ayurvedic herbs and spices include Gymnema Sylvestre, Fennel Seed, Cinnamon and Cardamom, which help balance fat and sugar metabolism and curb snack cravings.

Quick Tip:
One teaspoon of honey with one cup of warm water taken first thing in the morning on an empty stomach helps to scrape excess adipose tissue.

Emotional Overeating
Eating when you are not hungry, or looking for something sweet to pacify an unpleasant mood, are signs of lack of a state of balance. Ayurvedic herbals can help. Stress Free Emotions and Stress Free Mind are two Ayurvedic products that help with both emotional and physical stresses. Worry Free tablets support a calm, relaxed mind and deeper sleep. Blissful Joy tablets help uplift the emotions.

The herbs in Rejuvenation for Men and Rejuvenation for Ladies can be taken by men and women respectively. Both of these formulas contain Shilajit. According to the US National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health (NCBI), “Shilajit has been used as a rejuvenator and an adaptogen for thousands of years, in one form or another, as part of traditional systems of medicine in a number of countries. Many therapeutic properties have been ascribed to it, a number of which have been verified by modern scientific evaluation.”

3. Stress Less
The ancient science of Ayurveda explains three universal qualities; sattva [clarity], rajas [dynamism], and tamas [inertia]. Our mind is an expression of all three qualities, however, our overall tendencies often reflect the predominance of one of these three qualities. Likewise, according to ayurveda, a “sattvic” [pure] lifestyle is the best way to develop strength, clarity of the mind, good health and longevity. Sattvic qualities of the mind are considered to bring about clarity of the mind, understanding, and compassion. Sattvic foods are those foods which nourish the body and calm the mind. When both the body and mind are balanced only then can one truly appreciate joy and happiness without feeling stressed.

“Meditation is mind without agitation.”
– Narasimhan

Meditation & Yoga
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.

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

Herbal Supplements ...
1Worry Free - calms the mind and emotions; supports clarity of mind and deeper sleep; natural support for everyday stress and tension.

2. Stress Free Emotions - helps provide a natural resistance to emotional stress and fatigue; promotes emotional balance, positive feelings, and feelings of fulfillment.

3. Blissful Joy - helps to uplift the emotions; helps balance emotional ups and downs; alleviates sadness and feelings of frustration.

“Love is oily, soft, and gentle.” – Dr. Vasant Lad

Stress Management 101 
Charaka – the ancient scholar of Ayurveda states that if you really want to bring happiness and joy to a client, don’t try to discuss their problems but do an oil massage and all the problems will simply dissolve.

“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

Organic Sesame Oil - Enhance immunity and experience a sense of well-being. 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.

4. Improve Relationships
Any type of relationship, whether it is between family members,  friends, or even people we work with, it takes a lot of work to maintain and build upon. Therefore, three simple tips to help improve your relationships for the new year.

Know yourself. By becoming more aware of our own needs, wants, preferences, and limits, we risk using relationships as a source of our own validation; i.e. co-dependency. Often, as we develop greater inner awareness our outer relationships will naturally begin to flourish. Therefore, water the roots with inner awareness in order to enjoy the fruits of healthy  and meaningful relationships.

Know others. Similarly, as we develop greater inner awareness [i.e. with meditation] we will naturally and spontaneously begin to be more observant to all things around us. This subtle act of observation will likely include observing the needs, wants, preferences, and limits of others; hence appreciation.

Love One Another. Living and letting others live implies letting others live as they choose insofar as that doesn't infringe upon the rights and dignity of others around them. Likewise, love and compassion implies giving of one’s love for others wholly without conditions; unconditional.

Nourishing Body, Mind, & Soul ...
Finally, many people find that by taking Amrit Kalash on a year-round basis, they don't fall prey to colds and flu any more. The formula is the cream of ayurvedic rasayanas, the special elixirs for health and longevity. It protects the body by strengthening immunity, removing toxins and producing more ojas, the substance in the body associated with immunity and bliss.
Amrit Kalash - Traditional ayurvedic formula of 13 herbs that supports the health of mind, brain, and nerves; increases vitality and inner strength; powerful antioxidant — research shows it to be up to 1,000 times more effective than vitamins C and E

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

Happy New You!!

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.


3 Tips For Healthy Living - Finding Balance From An Ayurvedic Perspective

3 Tips For Healthy Living
The ancient science of Ayurveda has described health to be a state of perfect balance. Likewise, it’s very intuitive to acknowledge that this state of health and balance is brought about by maintaining a certain lifestyle in accordance with nature.

Cause And Effect
Although the world seems to be more unpredictable by the day - we know that disease often does not just appear from nowhere. Commonly, before any of the obvious signs and symptoms of disease appear there are often more subtle expressions of disease which are present - yet, unfortunately overlooked. In the same manner, if we were to come across a tree in the forrest we know with certainty that there was once a seed and fertile ground for that seedling to sprout and come to full bloom. So true with disease according to the teachings of Ayurveda.

3 Tips For Healthy Living 
1. Food and Diet
2. Seasonal Changes
3. Stress - Emotional Concerns


"If diet is wrong, medicine is of no use.

If diet is correct, medicine is of no need"
- Ayurvedic proverb

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

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

2. Seasonal Variation:
The teachings of Ayurveda explain that each person is a reflection of nature. Just as nature has seasonal variations of fall, winter, spring and summer - so too do we also reflect these same variations from within. More simply, as nature changes throughout the seasons - so too shall we adjust in order to stay balanced despite seasonal variations.

Below are simple examples on how to stay more balanced even despite seasonal changes. After all, we are a reflection of nature and the seasonal variations in nature also reflect within both our body and mind.

FALL:
Fall is often associated with qualities such as dry, light, cool, rough, and windy. Therefore in order to remain balanced and promote health during fall season we should consider introducing more warm, soothing, and easily digestible meals [i.e. warm soups] into one’s daily routine. This is the season to keep warm and avoid the gusty winds which can lead to increased dry qualities within. This dry and rough quality of nature may expresses itself within as constipation, dry and rough skin, and irritation to the eyes - these are just a few basic examples.

WINTER:
Winter, on the other hand, is known to be cold, damp, cloudy, and heavy. As mentioned above - according to Ayurveda, we are considered a miniature reflection of nature. Also, Ayurveda explains a concept of “like increases like” - which means the increased cold quality of winter for example will also increase the cold quality within; hence the tendency to catch a “cold” during winter. Therefore, in order to remain balanced during winter season we should consider something as simple as drinking more warming herbal teas [i.e. ginger and cinnamon tea] ... just like grandmother used to make. Yes, your grandmother was correct as she likely understood seasonal variation.

SPRING:
Interestingly, from an Ayurvedic perspective, spring is the king of all seasons because this is the season which Mother Nature seems to wake up and spring forth. The quality of spring is moist and full of energy. This is the season where snow of winter begins to melt, flowers develop a full range of color, and birds sing joyfully. Because of all this, spring is the season of allergies, “spring colds”, and hay fever. Therefore, during spring we should consider focusing on removing this excess quality of ‘moisture‘ [i.e. allergies, cold & congestion] from within. Just as we ‘spring clean’ our home during this season, it is advisable to consider spring cleaning the body with an Ayurvedic practice called “panchakarma”. Panchakarma is a purification cleansing process only to be performed under the guidance of a trained professional provider.

SUMMER:
Summer is well known for being hot, sharp, and bright and it is intuitive to balance these "fiery" qualities with something cool, soothing, and refreshing. Therefore, summer is a time to enjoy cooling herbal teas such as CCF tea [cumin, coriander, fennel] and enjoying cooling meals such as a simple salad. Likewise, you may also want to cool down with applying cool coconut oil as a daily massage.

3. Stress - Emotional Concerns:
With the world moving at an increasingly faster rate than ever before it is to no suprise that mental health is becoming more relevant in present day. It is well established in the science of Ayurveda that our health and well-being are centered around factors involving both the body and mind. It is becasue of this that Ayurveda recommends a daily routine [i.e. Dinacharya] which consists of consuming a nourishing diet, establishing positive and loving relationships, and devoting time for meditation and contemplation to help alleviate and prevent the occurence of stress.

Some Basic 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 …

“Sleep is the best meditation” - Dalai Lama
Although the above quote may not be technically correct, it does stress the importance for sound sleep.
Click Here: 8 Tips For Sound Sleep

 


The Benefits Of Meditation + Overcoming 5 Most Common Struggles of Meditation

 

The 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.

“Meditation is mind without agitation.”
- Narasimhan

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 ...

Interesting Video ~ The Scientific Power Of Meditation! 

Overcoming The 5 Most Common
Struggles With Meditation:

 

1. “I can't stop thinking.”
When people first begin to meditate, they often have the misunderstanding that one is not suppose to have any thoughts [while meditating]. Due to this false belief there is commonly a notion that one is doing something “wrong”. Unfortunately, it is this very act of judgement which can result in one meditating less.

Instead ...
Consider meditation an act of simply observing your thoughts as they arise and allowing them to flow without fully attaching and identifying to them.

2. “It’s impossible for me to sit still.”
One of the initial challenges of meditation is simply remaining still. Whether this stillness is of the body or stillness of the mind - many people find this to be a great challenge.

Instead ...
Simply consider focusing on the breath. Whether this focus on the breath is for one hour, one minute or even a few seconds - this focus on the breath will help to create a sense of being centered and will naturally create its own stillness.

3. “I fall asleep soon after I close my eyes.”
It is no surprise that many of us are overworked and sleep-deprived. Likewise, as the body begins to sense a level of relaxation - it naturally wants to further enter into a deep level of relaxation [i.e. sleep].

Instead ... 
If you do need sleep - by all means, sleep. However, as you continue a regular practice of meditation you will likely develop a greater sense of overall well-being including more profound sound sleep at night. As the quality of sleep improves at night this will provide for greater awareness during the day - which will allow you to meditate with a level of passive alertness without the tendency to falling asleep during meditation.

4. “I just don’t have time to meditate.”
Unfortunately, this may not only be the most common struggle but rather the most common ‘excuse’ not to meditate. Recently, I saw a clever post online which said, “if you have time for FB, you have time to meditate”. Taking into consideration that there are nearly 2 billion people on FB - there are 2 billion people who have time to meditate.

Instead ...
Consider setting up an alarm for the time you have carved out to meditate, or physically write it in your day planner; usually early morning or the evening. Also, instead of setting aside a large span of time to meditate - begin with just a few minutes dedicated to sitting quietly to meditate and do your level best to stick to this routine. Soon, after you begin to realize the actual benefits of meditation, the time you dedicate for meditation will increase exponentially!

5. “I don’t want to sit around and ‘do nothing’”
One of the most ‘real’ challenges in our ever increasingly fast-paced society is the concept of doing more and more and it would only seem counter-productive to ‘do nothing’.

Instead ...
Consider the act of sitting quiety and ‘doing nothing’ as a way of gaining new perspectives and insight which ultimately creates clarity of the mind. Likewise, as mentioned above, meditation has been shown to improve brain function and memory which will help to approach the ‘to-do list’ more effectively.

Parting Comment:
Make sure to bring that sense of peace and calmness from your daily meditation into your daily activies. Dr. Andrew Weil nicely explains ... “Remember the breath while walking - as with any meditation technique - should not be pursued with a grim determination to ‘get it right’. The point is to cultivate openness, relaxation and awareness, which can include awarness of your undisciplined, wandering mind.” - Dr. Andrew Weil