Schlagwort-Archiv: food

Have a Happy Spring

By Vishakha Moghe

 

Picture Credits: Kaustubh Surve
Picture Credits: Kaustubh Surve

One of the biggest changes as winter comes to an end is the rising temperature and the increasing body heat that follows. The transition from winter to spring and spring to summer is one of the most interesting and important one.  Spring is said to be the season in which Kapha dosha dominates in our body. As the accumulated snow begins to melt with the rising heat, the accumulated Ama (undigested food) in the body also begins to slowly liquefy. The increased Kapha too that melts, clogs the ‘Srotas’ (micro circulatory channels) in the body. This leads to a lot of Ama-related diseases which are a result of diminished Jatharagni (digestive fire).

Winter is the healthiest season of the year owing to the favorable weather conditions. The cold usually keeps the Pitta dosha in control thus preventing Pitta-related disorders. The Kapha dosha begins to accumulate in the body with the increasing cold without causing too many problems. The aggravated Vata however, causes Vataja Vikara like Joint and Muscular pain, Dry Skin and Arthritis. As spring arrives, all the winter-related disorders come under control and the diseases caused by liquefying Kapha take over. The most common spring problems are allergies, rhinitis, sinusitis, indigestion, asthma, cold and cough.

Spring Allergies
Spring Allergies

Annually, millions of people fall prey to seasonal allergies or seasonal allergic rhinitis which is most common with the onset of spring. People cannot enjoy spring due to constant sneezing and sniffling. Fortunately, Ayurvedic scriptures already have a mention of the solution to all such problems. It is brilliant, how carefully this science was designed ages back bringing forth the most intricate details that hold relevance even in today’s age.

As per Ayurveda, the duration from mid March to mid May constitutes the Vasant Ritu or Spring season. The body’s natural tendency is to flush out the toxins by liquefying the Kapha. Hence, we must assist in helping the body get rid of the toxins by taking measures that can keep us healthy and happy for a long time. When spring sets in, Ayurveda advises certain lifestyle modifications that can keep the seasonal ailments in check.

 

1. Honey should become an integral part of our daily routine. It should be consumed early in the morning on an empty stomach as it helps in controlling Kapha dosha.

 

Picture Credits: www.stevenaitchinson.co.uk.
Picture Credits: www.stevenaitchinson.co.uk.

2. Kick start your mornings by performing Jalaneti with moderately warm, saline water. This clears the nasal passages and sinuses and further prevents accumulation of mucus.

3. Oil massage followed by Udvartan (dry powder massage) with Chandan, Aguru ensures protection of the skin from Kapha-related skin disorders. It also improves the immunity by strengthening the body.

4. Asava, Arishta (Ayurvedic self-generating alcoholic preparations), Sidhu, Mardvik should be consumed on a daily basis in moderate quantity. It’s best to consume them during the Kapha time which is from 6 am to 10 am. People who have a hot constitution should consume them in limits and with caution.

5. Grains that have been stored for a long period of time should be consumed. The older they get, the richer and lighter they are to digest. Intake of Jowar (Hordeum vulgare) and Barley also has been proved to improve immunity.

Picture Credits: www.curiouscuisiniere.com
Picture Credits: www.curiouscuisiniere.com

6. Moderate to heavy exercise is advisable for those with good strength. Exercise helps the body to get rid of excess Kapha dosha and it also eliminates toxins from the skin through sweat.

7. Sipping on warm water occasionally throughout the day is highly recommended as this helps the body digest excess Ama and Kapha.

8. Day sleep is strictly contraindicated as this could lead to an increased Kapha dosha, thus leading to further aggravation of Kapha.

9. Vasant ritu is the season for periodic body cleansing as the body’s natural tendency is to do so. Ayurveda recommends body cleansing during Vasant in the form of Vaman (Emesis) or induced vomiting under expert supervision to eliminate body toxins. The other procedures to be performed are Dhumapana (Herbal Smoking), Gandusha (Oil Pulling) and Nasya (Nasal oil therapy), all under an Ayurvedic practitioner’s guidance.

10. Generous use of spices like dry and fresh ginger, turmeric, garlic, onions that can help digest Ama should be made.

Picture Credits: Shutterstock
Picture Credits: Shutterstock

With some wise modifications in diet and lifestyle, everyone can dream of living a disease-free spring.

Ayurvedafinder wishes all its readers a “Happy Spring”!

 

 

About The Author

 

dsc_0440-11Vishakha 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.

Eat Your Way To A Healthy Body And A Sound Mind

 

By Vishakha Moghe

“The only species that becomes nutritionally deficient is the human species. And we do so because we’ve completely lost touch with the inner wisdom of our bodies.”

Ayurveda has this wonderful way of explaining how we as human beings are unique from every other human being on the planet. This applies to the Prakruti (body constitution), the mental makeup and the eating habits. Eating does not mean feeding your body to sustain it; eating is an art and one must master it.  How often do we carefully pick what we eat and concentrate on how our body assimilates it? Hardly ever! And that’s exactly where our problems begin.

Intelligent food is that which is full of “Prana”(life), energy and strength. It has the power to influence your consciousness and thoughts. At the same time, food brings anger, happiness and contentment depending on the way it is cooked and on the vibrations of the person who cooks it. The quality of food literally affects your mind, body and your thoughts. When you are aware of the qualities of foods you eat, you are being a conscious and a wise eater.  But with all the chaos going on in our heads, we miss out on these simple pleasures of life.

Picture Source: www.shutterstock.com
Picture Source: www.shutterstock.com

How to be a Wise Eater?

1. Love the regional food- Food is life, it is the source of energy and it is an entity that has been wisely created by nature. Foods that are whole, unadulterated and that grow in your own region have the highest nutritive value and are intelligent in nature. Traditionally, Indians used to eat a fair amount of Bajra (Pearl Millet), Jowar (Sorghum) and Ragi (Finger Millet). These foods were packed with health, antioxidants and nutrition. We need to revive our love for traditional foods which is the only way we can save our future generations from hoards of allergies, nutrition deficiencies and other health problems.

Picture Source: www.yogadelmar.com
Picture Source: www.yogadelmar.com

2. Include all six tastes in your meal- When your body craves unhealthy food, it’s because your body isn’t getting its dose of all the six tastes namely- Sweet, Sour, Salty, Pungent, Bitter and Astringent. So it’s important that we include foods that fall under each category. Also, you should always begin your meal with something sweet and then eat the other foods one-by- one in the above mentioned order.

3. Minimize restaurant eating- No matter how much a restaurant claims to use safe ingredients and healthy cooking measures, restaurant food can be far from safe and healthy. Most of the time, we are unaware of the source of the ingredients esp. when the foods are animal-based. The kind of cooking oils used, the nature of the ingredients whether they are freshly bought or have been stored in the freezer for a long time is unknown to us. It’s always a better option to eat freshly cooked home food.

4. Avoid stale foods- Foods that are cooked in the morning can be eaten at night but foods that have been cooked at night shouldn’t be eaten in the morning since they turn stale due to night’s tamasik Also, the nutrients in the food die out. Stale food increases acid secretion that in turn worsens diseases like hyperacidity, digestive disorders and other ama-related disorders.

Picture Source: www.banyanbotanicals.com
Picture Source: www.banyanbotanicals.com

5. Eat the five main Sattvik foods in their natural, organic form when possible- Milk, Ghee, Honey, Fruit, Almonds. Milk is revered in Ayurvedic philosophy as a complete food.

6. Avoid eating canned and frozen foods- Every living food is full of Prana when it’s fresh. Food that has been frozen or preserved is devoid of prana. How much prana is present in a particular food is dependent on the length of time it has been frozen. As a rule of thumb, if your food hasn’t seen sunlight in a while, it’s best to reduce your consumption of that food or eliminate it from your diet altogether.

So many of us complain about our lack of energy, increased sluggishness and exhaustion; this is where the energy actually starts to manifest. Feed your body and mind with natural, prana-rich foods that have the power to entirely change the way you think and look at your body. Not only that, start maintaining a routine and sticking to it whole-heartedly. Eating is a sacred act of filling your body with good energy and life. The love, joy and happiness you feel while cooking it will bring the energy back into your life.

So vow to start eating your way to a healthy body and a sound mind!

 

 

dsc_0440-11

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.

Optimal Digestion and Metabolism with Ayurveda

Vegetarian Indian dish
Vegetarian Indian dish

Gas and bloating? Heartburn after a heavy meal? Constipation when traveling? A few extra pounds that just won’t come off? We all know too well when our digestion and elimination is not working properly, but often, instead of reevaluating our dietary habits, we just grab the next anti-acid or laxative medication that temporarily relieves symptoms but does not get to the root cause of our troubles. Ulli Allmendinger explains how the ancient science of Ayurveda can help regain digestive and metabolic health.

According to Ayurveda, food is one of the main pillars of life. Since we all eat at least three times a day, the quality of our food affects us enormously, and is a key factor in either promoting health and wellness or bringing about imbalance and disease. Rather than focusing on macronutrients such as carbohydrates, proteins and fats, Ayurvedic nutrition emphasizes the taste and energetic quality of food and its effect on each metabolic type or dosha: Vata (ether/air), Pitta (fire/water) and Kapha (earth/water).
The doshas are bio-energies in our body that are responsible for our physiological functioning, such as Vata for movement (beating of the heart, peristalsis), Pitta for transformation (digestion, heat regulation, metabolism) and Kapha for structure and stability (muscle and fat tissue, protective mucous lining of the stomach and sinuses). We all have all three doshas but the unique ratio of them varies from person to person and is determined at conception. This is called constitution or metabolic type. Depending on your metabolic type, certain foods support and balance you or can be counterproductive, causing digestive and metabolic disturbance.
When it comes to digestive health in Ayurveda, eating according to your metabolic type is very important. Secondly, you want to keep the digestive fire strong through healthy heating routines. And lastly, it is also important to pay attention to food combining. If you follow these principles, you will optimize your digestion and your metabolism and weight.

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