Shirodhara is one of the most effective treatments used in Ayurveda today, for the deepest of relaxation and calmness to the mind. Warm herb-infused sesame oil is gently poured in a stream over the forehead. This treatment is known for its therapeutic effects on anxiety, stress, disturbed sleep and more, by working on rebalancing the pituitary and pineal glands situated deep in the brain. It is truly blissful and perfect for vata balancing.
We are saying goodbye Pitta season and hello Vata season. We are transitioning from summer to autumn, and as we do this short ‘in between’ period is known as ‘rtu sandhi’ in Ayurveda. Our bodies respond to the atmospheric changes just as the rest of nature does and like our mind and body the seasons are influenced by the doshas.
Poop … a subject we are embarrassed to talk about despite the fact it’s a natural body habit and that many people struggle with healthy bowel movements. What’s more, so many people don’t even pay attention to what comes out the other end, but it’s your single most obvious indicator to your gut health. If you’ve visited an Ayurvedic Practitioner, you will know that we talk in detail about our elimination since it is one of the cornerstones to maintaining a healthy digestive system and overall wellness.
For me Brahmi is a perfect option for the challenging urban environment and My go to sattvic rejuvenator for the mind (medhya rasayana) since it opens the gateway to our consciousness and something I've been needing as we transition into the summer.
It’s not only what we eat, it’s how we eat that contributes strongly to keeping digestion fired up and toxins at bay. We must listen to our ‘gut’ and following the simple guidelines below we can ensure we give ourselves the best possible chance to connect the dots to our digestive and other health issues.
Ayurveda believes the nose to be the doorway to the head and is the preferred channel for treating various conditions of the eyes, ears, nose, throat, head and diseases above the chest. For example, headaches, migraines, sinusitis, dizziness, sleep disturbances, nasal polyps, frozen shoulder and many other conditions.
Diseases don’t form overnight but begin when we are not living aligned to our mind-body type (prakruti). Disease is the result of a collective of irregular diet and lifestyle habits and cumulative patterns that allows ama to form over time and thrive. What are the types of habits that lead to an increase in toxins? Read more …
We are what we eat but it’s more accurate to say that we are what we do and don’t digest. Regardless of how healthy we deem our diet to be, if our digestive system is out of whack even healthy foods can become digestive toxins. The gut is the epicentre of both good health and disease.
Tongue Scraping is a vedic ritual I grew up with from the moment I had a full set of teeth and I am so grateful for these old Indian traditions that have become so essential at a time where gut health has never been more important to our wellness. Read more about the benefits of this morning cleansing ritual.
Chyawanprash is herbal jam packed with nothing but rejuvenating goodness to get you not only through the winter but your entire life since its designed to bring longevity and youthfulness. This immune boosting elixir is considered to be a ‘lick-able’ medicine… Yes that’s right! Take that teaspoon out of the nutella jar and dip into this delicious dark chocolate colour jam that’s packed with over 40 different natural and nutritive ingredients
This is the epitome of a traditional yet simple south Indian breakfast and I absolutely love it with my twist of the added veggies to make it nice and savoury. Sure it’s traditionally eaten for breakfast but actually I often have if as a light meal for anytime of day. Of course, you can also change up the grain to quinoa, amaranth or millet you would need to have this pre-cooked.
Do you know what doesn’t add up for me? When we are physically unwell we take time to allow the body to recover, so why do we not do the same for when our stress levels increase or our mood and emotions fluctuates? Fluctuation to our mood is an inevitable part of life and we must understand our mind just like to body to know where our vulnerabilities lie.
When the sun is shining we may feel warm and happy but with shorter days, longer evenings, colder climates, many of us suffer from the winter blues or a type of depression also known as Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD) that can affect your daily life. Though you may be feeling ‘SAD’ we can turn it around with Ayurveda by embracing our ‘Seasonal Ayurvedic Dinacharya’.
Over the last 15 years my journey of Ayurveda has continued to evolve and grow. It’s both my passion and purpose and I feel truly blessed. Ever since I was a child I had been immersed in various diet and lifestyle practices and rituals that, at the time I didn’t know were rooted in Ayurvedic science. Read on for why it’s most profound system of medicine and healing in my eyes.
Vata and the autumn season is ruled by the elements of space and air bringing with it a dominance of the cold, windy and dry qualities. An increase of these qualities in the environment mean that the temperature starts to drop, leaves start to fall and the winds increase, so we need to make adjustments to stay in flow with these changes and prevent ourselves from becoming imbalanced and sick.
A very under utilised grain that really should get some limelight since it has so many health benefits when eaten as part of a balanced diet. It is one of the richest sources of protein found in a grain (lysine - an essential amino acid) as well as being gluten-free.
This dish has always been one of my quick go to snack dishes and one that you can rustle up on a lazy day when you’re running low of vegetables. It’s light is full of flavour and is another one pot wonder dish that can be enjoyed for breakfast, lunch or dinner.
A perfect all year round one pot dish winner that is nourishing yet cleansing for the digestive system. It is a nice alternative to the traditional kitchari recipe. You can vary the vegetables according to the season.
Over the counter probiotics and digestive enzymes are certainly on the rise but I’m not convinced that these are a holistic, balanced or a long term solution. Ayurvedic buttermilk known as takra is a useful refreshing yoghurt-based drink designed to restore a healthy gut microbiome. It was considered to be the divine healer for humans according to (Bhavaprakasha. Ch 6.V.7)
Ever see people with radiant skin and wonder what their secret is? We all want our skin to be free from acne, blemishes, dryness and oiliness. Sushruta Samhita, a text dating as far back as 5000 years, mentions various herbs, routines and recipes to maintain one’s ‘beauty’. Excellent! So what’s the formula?
Just as the seasons change so does our body’s internal environment. The ancient sage Charaka said that strength and lustre is enhanced in a person that understands and applies a the diet and regimen suitable for each season. And the Summer is Pitta Season, where heat and dryness rise in the body. Here are some Ayurvedic tip to keep you cool this summer.
I truly believe that we have to look backwards to move forwards. The ancient seers of Ayurveda took a totally different approach to health and nutrition, a much more personalised approach to nutrition that takes the entire person into consideration - the body/dosha type, their mental state, family history, age, season, digestive strength, immunity, energy, health issues and more can bring overall all balance.
And so it starts again – an increase in pollens and for so many of you - hay fever (seasonal allergic rhinitis), with symptoms such as runny nose, sneezing, itchy eyes and throat, nasal blockages, difficulty breathing, a heavy head, weakness and fatigue. Get ahead of the game with Ayurvedic rituals, herbs and diet to prevent Hay Fever this summer.
Our body has one of the best built in detoxification systems via our liver, lungs, colon, kidneys and skin. Our only job is to give these organs the support that they need. Spring is a natural time for the body to eliminate toxins. There are many different ways to fast and cleanse the body and since we are all unique we must find a cleansing method that suits our body type.
In the spring, physical strength and appetite reduces. A detox and cleanse can be as gentle as adjusting our diet and lifestyle for the season. A successful cleanse is one where you create long-term healthful habits not an unsupported quick and harsh 3 day cleanse. Now that you prepared what you need from the last blog, here is what you can do to gentle physical body cleanse for a 15-30 day period
Every year if you give your digestive system the much needed break from the heavy and difficult to digest foods that have features in our diets over the winter period, remove digestive toxins (ama) and stimulate our digestive fire, you'll set yourself up for optimal health. An Ayurvedic cleanse is designed to support the natural functions of our gut microbiome.
One of the most common desserts is a very simple preparation of milk and rice, better known as Indian rice pudding. It is a wonderful, nurturing dessert for the winter months but since we are still in winter mode at the moment I am still, at the same time being wholesome and vata-pacifying.
We always turn to soup when we are sick and this is because it provides easy to digest nutrients for the body to heal and replenish. Though there are thousands of delicious soup recipes and all of them hearty and nourishing, the ultimate ‘soup-er’ food in my book is a cleansing mung bean soup.
Sleep is just as necessary and nourishing for our body, mind and emotions as food and is considered as one of the three pillars of life in Ayurveda. While our body takes restful sleep, it is quietly working to detoxify, regenerate and rejuvenating each and every cell of the body. In my clinic I consult many individuals that have high stress and anxiety and worries that affect sleep and sometimes it can be chronic insomnia'. Shirodhara is a brilliant treatment for this but there are lots of things you can start with at home.