Posts by mark

Having a Healthy Winter & Early Spring – Part 3

Posted by on Jan 7, 2018 in Uncategorized | 0 comments

Diet   Winter dietary habits come quite naturally. Winter is actually the season when the digestive fire is the strongest. The body requires more fuel to stay warm and healthy in the winter months. When it is cold our body constricts the skin pores and superficial connective tissue to prevent heat loss. This directs heat away from the peripheral tissues and into the body’s core, igniting the digestive capacity. We crave a more substantial and nutritive diet at this time of year.   In General   Aim to spark the digestive and metabolic system! Have the largest meal at lunch, smaller at dinner. Allow three hours digestion before bed. Eat foods that balance dominant dosha or pacify the dosha that has become aggravated.   Favour – warm, cooked, slightly oily, well-spiced – light, dry, warm – pungent, bitter, astringent tastes – all spices are good, invigorating warming spices are best   Decrease – sweet, sour, salty tastes – salt as it retains water   Avoid – cold damp foods, excessively sweet foods, overly heavy foods and frozen food – too much wheat, pasta, bread, dairy – eating before bed – napping after meals – leads to ama (toxicity) due to suppressing the digestive fire – cold/ iced beverages   Drink hot water/ tea several times a day to remove toxins from body. Don’t take excessive liquid with meals as it impairs digestion by dampening agni. Doing a one day liquid fast on juice or soup is very beneficial for kapha.   Foods   Favour lighter fruits – apples, pears, pomegranate, cranberries, apricot. Decrease heavier ones – banana, avocado, pineapple, orange, peach, coconut, melon, dates, figs.   Lots of vegetables – generally all are good but limit sweet and juicy ones like sweet potatoes, tomatoes, zucchini. Favour hearty and heating veg – radish, cooked spinach, onions, carrots and other root vegetables.   All spices are good especially the pungent ones – pepper, cayenne, mustard seed and ginger garlic, chilli’s but limit salt.   Grains – barley, corn, millet, buckwheat, rye. Decrease oats, rice and wheat.   Legumes are generally good for kapha, well cooked, and well spiced and with ghee to not aggravate vata. Avoid soy as it is cooling. And if you eat them, eggs (especially poached or hard boiled) and meats like chicken, turkey, rabbit and venison are good to have in winter more than the other seasons due to the increased agni.   Decrease dairy although you can use small amounts of ghee.   Avoid most sweeteners. Honey is good. Others increase kapha and lead to blocked sinuses, allergies, colds and lethargy. Take tablespoon or raw honey every day (do not cook with honey as it forms toxins).   Decrease all nuts and seeds, favour pumpkin and sunflower seeds. Decrease red meat – white chicken, turkey, eggs and seafood. Have small amounts of fat and oils – extra virgin olive oil, ghee, corn, sunflower, mustard and safflower.   When the slimy, mucous quality is high, avoid mucus accumulating foods such as cheese, ice cream.   Drinks   Favour room temperature or warm beverages. A great tea to have is made by boiling for 5 mins half a teaspoon ginger, half a teaspoon cinnamon, pinch of cardamon and of clove. Have during or after meals. This counters the cold quality, increasing heat, improves circulation and eliminates mucus from the system, stimulates digestion and sharpen dull taste buds. Others herbs to use in tea are cumin, fennel. In place of medicated ayurvedic wines that stimulate the digestion down to a cellular level, sipping some red or dry white wine...

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Having a Healthy Winter & Early Spring – Part 2

Posted by on Jan 7, 2018 in Uncategorized | 0 comments

Daily Regime   Wake early This might be harder for kapha individuals as they like to sleep in but waking early is very important to keep the heavy qualities of kapha at bay, replacing them with more sharp, alert qualities.   Scraping tongue and brushing teeth Scraping the tongue in the morning awakens the digestive reflex, stimulates agni, and improves circulation of the visceral organs. Cinnamon, clove, and haritaki toothpaste is very beneficial for kapha, it also protects teeth from sensitivity to the cold.   Oil pulling Removes toxins, nourishes teeth and gums, strengthening the teeth and preventing receding gums, freshens the breath and soothes and stimulates the sense organs and mind. It has profound and systemic influence on body; circulatory system, skeletal system and nervous system. After having brushed the teeth, take approximately a tablespoon of organic, cold-pressed sesame oil in the mouth and swill it around/ hold it for a few minutes. Then spit it out and massage the gums.   Warm cup of water Helps stimulate a good bowel movement and cleanses the digestive tract.   Dry Skin Brushing Dry skin brushing removes dead skin layers and leaves the skin supple and glowing. It works closely with the lymphatic system if done in the correct way, stimulates circulation and helps decrease kapha by it’s dry, rough nature. It is best done in the morning before a shower. Then in the shower you can be sure to wash off any left-over dead skin cells. Use a dry brush, natural silk glove or soft sponge. It takes 5-10 mins. Brush the entire body always towards the heart working backwards from the heart. Perform long strokes on the limbs and circular strokes on the stomach and joints, with softer pressure on thinner skin eg under arms, and more pressure on thicker skin eg sole of feet. You can then take a hot/cold shower for the full home-spa experience!   Abyhanga Abyhanga revitalises the tissues, cleans the body, protects us from old age and is one of the best remedies for pacifying vata. It moves excess doshas back into the digestive tract so that they can leave the body, enhances tissue growth and promotes strength, relaxation and sound sleep. It aids in healthy joints and ligaments, and in nourishing the nerves. Have a towel or mat for this purpose. In a heated room warm up some organic, cold-pressed sesame oil and apply to the whole body. One can start feet up or head down. Rub in the oil so that it goes beyond the superficial fascia and aim to leave on for 20 minutes. In that time one can massage themselves, practice some yoga, meditate etc. After, wash off in a warm shower. Snigdha – the quality of oiliness, unctuosity is seen as one of the qualities of love in sanskrit. One would usually practice abyhanga or dry skin-brushing. Or if you want to go the whole way, dry-skin brush first, then abyhanga, then shower. Then amazing.   Neti Cleansing the nasal passage helps enormously rid the body of mucus build up and sinus congestion in the, nose, ears, and whole head. For this we use a neti pot. They can be found online with simple instructions.   Nasya Placing a few drops of nasya oil or sesame oil in each nostril and massaging the inner walls of the nose helps clear the mind, awakens the senses, helps with good vision, protects and nourishes the beginning of the respiratory tract and increases our sense of smell. Nasya oil is made with herbs that are particularly good for clearing sinus congestion...

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Ayurveda1

Posted by on Feb 6, 2015 in Featured, Thumbnail | 0 comments

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