By Vishakha Moghe
If there’s a science that inspires us to live the motto “Rise and Shine” in literal sense, it is undoubtedly India’s traditional system of medicine. The world received a gift thousands of years ago and the gift was in the form of Ayurveda. It is important for every individual to set up a daily regimen for himself. Such healthy and unique daily practices assure you a healthy and disease-free life. Ayurveda recommends that in order to be holistically healthy we should sync our bodies with the nature’s master cycle to regulate various other rhythms.
Vagbhata in his treatise “Ashtang Hrudaya” has stated that, everyday two cycles pass through our body, each bringing a Vata, Pitta, Kapha dominance. The cycle times are as follows:
6 A.M. to 10 A.M. – Kapha
10 A.M. to 2 P.M. – Pitta
2 P.M. to 6 P.M. – Vata
6 P.M. to 10 P.M. – Kapha
10 P.M. to 2 A.M. – Pitta
2 A.M to 6 A.M. – Vata
Based on this, we must start our morning and spend our day with an effort to maintain a balance of all the three doshas (humors). When we take the time to invest in our Ayurvedic daily routine, called Dinacharya, we are kick-starting our day in the most powerful way — balanced, ready for anything!
1. Wake Up To Beat The Sun- Utthanam
A healthy individual must wake up at least an hour before sunrise (ideally 2 hours before sunrise). It is the freshest and the purest time of the day with the air having the most “Prana Vayu”. Also, since the Vata dosha is dominant, it is easier for the body to receive the delicate messages that nature sends and to eliminate the wastes out of the body. The mind can easily stay alert and active because Vata is light, active and subtle.
2. Elimination Of Wastes – Mala-Mutra Visarjanam
To cleanse your body systems, it is important to eliminate the wastes and toxins by eliminating them at the right time. Since Vata dosha is quick, waking up in the Vata period ensures smooth and easy defecation.
3. Cleaning The Teeth & Scraping The Tongue – Danta Dhaawan & Jivha Nirlekhanam
Clean the teeth with 12 finger-long straight, crushed root of trees that have astringent, pungent and bitter tastes like Khadir, Neem, Babbul, Karanja. Spit out the juices that are secreted and then scrape your tongue with the other end of the same piece of root by flattening it by chewing. Massage the gums with herbal powders mixed with honey. This ensures clean, sparkling and cavity-free teeth and eliminates mouth odor. It also helps you sharply perceive the taste of consumed food.
4. Use of Collyrium- Anjanam
To protect the eyes by eliminating excess stickiness that is formed due to Kapha and to improve visual power, it is important to apply the preparation of collyrium called Triphalanjan or Souveeranjan in the eyes. These are available in the market or one can easily prepare fresh anjan everyday.
5. Administer Nasal Drops – Nasyam & Dhoomapanam
For nasal and entire upper body cleansing, instilling nasal drops of Anu thailam, Cow ghee or Panchendriya Vardhan thailam after a light facial massage helps in eliminating excess Kapha from the head, nose and throat. This has miraculous effects on the face, hair, shoulders and chest as well. Hence, it helps in preventing wrinkles, grey hair, hair loss and premature ageing. Nasya should be followed by inhalation of medicinal fumes by burning mixture of medicines that help to keep respiratory system disease-free.
6. Gargling – Gandoosham
Gargling the mouth with warm medicinal oils, decoctions, honey, milk or simply water ensures healthy mouth, strong teeth, gums and lips.
7. Full Body Massage- Abhyangam
None of us are unaware of the benefits of a whole body oil massage. Applying warm medicinal oils according to the body constitution and gently massaging the limbs, joints and feet ensures good blood circulation, strengthens and tightens the skin, reduces fatigue, slows down ageing. A good feet massage is equally healthy for the feet and the eyes, and further helps in treating insomnia by nourishing the senses. Avoid a body massage immediately after meals or in case of fever or body weakness.
8. Exercise- Vyayamam
Pick your preferred way of exercising. It could be Suryanamaskar, a brisk walk, a swim, yogic postures or breathing exercises. Early morning exercise eliminates laziness, stagnation and sluggishness. It boosts digestion, also digests body fat and leaves you feeling light and energetic. It fills your body with good Prana. It is not to be strenuous. In fact, exercising at one fourth to one half of your capacity is recommended. The rule is to stop when your heart beat begins to be heard rigorously and forehead begins to sweat profusely.
9. Bath- Snanam
After the body cools down a bit post-exercising, head in for a bath or a shower. This helps you to rid the body of oil and dirt. A lukewarm bath is always recommended unless one is facing Pitta disorders or it is the summer season. Snana improves digestion, longevity, energy and keeps the body clean and hygienic. It also rehydrates the skin and fends off fatigue.
All these activities followed by a light and healthy breakfast will kick start your day on a positive note. Finding time to indulge in these daily activities is essential if we are looking to boost our work output and furthermore looking for a longer and quality life.
Ayurvedafinder says, “Your perfect Ayurvedic morning routine is a doorway to a healthy and disease-free life!”
About the Author
Vishakha is an Ayurvedic practitioner, yoga counselor and a passionate traveler. She lays emphasis on living a healthy life by nourishing the body and mind with wholesome and natural food, meditation and yogic techniques. An Indian at heart, she aims at propagating the goodness of the Indian culture across the seven seas and stimulating thoughts by creating a hunger for knowledge.