"Ice Is Not So Nice" - Ancient Wisdom Regarding Ice

 

"Ice Is Not So Nice" 
We add it to beverages. We use it to chill food. We apply it topically and we use it in food, like smoothies. The question is, is ice the best for our health? In traditional Chinese medicine, ice is considered a “poison” when ingested. Ayurveda says the same. Why would these age-old medical systems say something against what so many of us have found great pleasure in? I mean, we use ice in smoothies, cocktails, chilled water with our meals and other similar instances. Why would ice be looked down upon?

According to Ayurveda, ice is an astringent that causes vasoconstriction, or narrowing of the blood vessels. When we ingest ice, it enters into the cavern of the mouth, which has a direct relationship to important organs in the brain, such as the hypothalamus and pituitary gland. It also works with hormones, immunity and mood regulation being that the primary organs of the endocrine system are pituitary, thalamus, hypothalamus, thyroid and eventually adrenals. This cold substance contributes to a disregulation of these systems because the body recognizes this extreme temperature drop as a stress. The body temperature is affected, and the body has to work harder to compensate for this temperature difference.

Ice Puts Undue Stress Upon Digestion
This stress to the body and the recurrence of the incidence of ice has a cumulative effect. Ayurveda states that the quality of an individual’s health is contingent upon the strength and quality of digestion. Ayurveda categorizes digestion according to balanced, weak, sharp/high and/or variable. Balanced digestion is self-evident and implies that the body is mainly balanced in health. When there is stress, this can have various effects on digestion, dictating the health of not only the body but also the mind. If the body doesn’'t obtain the crucial nutrients it needs, we suffer.

Imagine If You Will - The Digestive Flame
Ingesting ice can negatively affect our quality of health. Imagine you have a burner with the flame on any level and you add a piece or two of ice. What happens? The fire goes out. When we ingest ice, we weaken or even douse our digestive fire. Ayurveda, along with other recent Western studies, has linked health issues such as diabetes, obesity, mucous, depression, anxiety, respiratory infections, allergies and other digestive issues to the effects of ice.

Nectar vs. Poison
In Ayurveda, it is said that the nectar of life is hot water and the poison of life is cold water. For example, cleaning pipes out is more effective with hot water versus cold. Through Ayurvedic practices, when we want to stimulate metabolism and promote weight loss through optimal digestion, we take in hot water. Cold water has the opposite effect and lowers metabolism, causing digestion to weaken and weight to increase eventually and quicker for some than others based on constitution and season.

Prajnaparadha - Crimes Against Wisdom
The other main cause of health issues, according to Ayurveda is, what is called Prajnaparadha, which translates to “"crimes against wisdom".” In other words, it’s knowing what is right for us but choosing something different. Bringing anything cold into the body can affect our naturally maintained warm inner environment, so a second thought may give us the opportunity to make a different choice. Next time you’re at the restaurant, ask for warm or hot water instead of the chilled ice water. Try smoothies without ice or at room temperature. As for cocktails, ask for less ice. Save the cold for application to a wound, fever or burn — since this is how ice works best.

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

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


Ayurveda = Achieving Health Through Balance

 

Health Through Balance 
Knowing nature to be whole and complete, good health implies restoring that natural state of completeness and wholeness. According to the science of Ayurveda, health is a natural state when there is perfect balance of your body, mind, and spirit.

“Any treatment that attends only to the symptoms is not a good therapy. The best treatment is one that balances the whole and does not create other disorders.”
- Charak Samhita

Inner Intelligence
No matter how imbalanced you may feel, there is always residing deep within an inner intelligence which seeks balance. Modern medicine describes this natural state of balance as homeostasis, the in-built tendency towards equilibrium. Ayurveda describes balance to be when the doshas [bodily humors], agni [metabolism] and when all excretions of the body are in perfect order. Likewise, when the Soul, the senses and intellect are balanced while still maintaining a sense of peace and happiness all reflect a state of good health and well-being.

Wonderful Video - An Introduction To Ayurveda - By Dr. Indu Arora

Dr. Indu Arora talks about the basics of Ayurveda, India's traditional system of medicine. A Van Howe Enterprises, LTD production. Directed by Matthew J Van Howe and Angel M Van Howe.

"We have done every possible thing that we can do - in our capacity,  in our intelligence, to find health. And all we have found was, that we have to come back. We have to come back to the basics, we have to come back to our roots, we have to come back to ourselves. That is the only way we can find the solution. " - Dr. Indu Arora

 

Balanced Doshas
In managing any imbalance, Ayurveda determines which dosha [or combination of doshas] which may be out of balance and therefore takes steps to help normalize it, according to one’s unique tendencies. This process helps to seek out the root cause of any imbalance rather than treating mere symptoms. For example, imbalanced Vata dosha can lead to various symptoms such as constipation, anxiety, nervousness, dry skin or even joint pain [amongst many other conditions]. Rather than addressing all the mentioned symptoms separately, the science of Ayurveda seeks to balance the underlying dosha, vata dosha in this example. CLICK HERE - To Learn More About Doshas

 

Balanced Digestion
Ayurveda has described 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.

“Agni converts food in the form of energy, which is responsible for all the vital functions of our body. Therefore, Ayurveda considers that Dehagni as the cause of life, complexion, strength, health, nourishment, luster, ojas, tejas [vital-yet-subtle energy] and prana [life sustaining energy]. – Charaka Chikitsa 15/4

 

Balanced State Of Mind
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. It seems that research centered around the benefits of meditation have now been rolling in steadily validating the age-old-concept, sound mind sound body.

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 …