Thursday, November 16, 2017

How To Balance Your Digestion





If you're feeling sluggish, dull or occasionally constipated, it's likely that toxins are building up in your body. According to Maharishi Ayurveda, toxins accumulate when your digestion and elimination are out of sync. This imbalance can lead to skin breakouts, menstrual cramps, fatigue, feelings of occasional sadness and other health issues. Balancing digestion and elimination is a specialty of Maharishi Ayurveda, and many of our herbal formulas do just that. One of our most effective formulas for balancing digestion is Organic Digest Tone, which contains Triphala, a powerful Ayurvedic herbal combination of three remarkable fruits.

"Happiness for me is largely a matter of digestion." - Lin Yutang

The three fruits in Organic Digest Tone are Amla (see image), Chebulic myrobalan and Belleric myrobalan — and each by itself possesses superior rejuvenative and health-giving qualities. Because Organic Digest Tone contains three elixirs in one compound, it is considered one of the most valuable herbal preparations in the world. A fourth ingredient, Cabbage Rose, is added to aid the synergy of the other ingredients and increase their effectiveness.
How does Triphala work? A mild laxative, it purifies so gently that when used for an extended period of time, it detoxifies even the deepest tissues and organs of the body. Impressively, in addition to possessing this powerful cleansing quality, Triphala actually supports absorption of food rather than depleting the body's nutrients. There are two byproducts of digestion: ama and ojas. Ama, toxic waste, is the byproduct of improper digestion. Of course, we don't want ama. What we want is ojas: the finest product of digestion, which, according to the historical traditional texts of Ayurveda, prevents health imbalances, creates luster in the skin and rejuvenates vital energy in the entire body. Organic Digest Tone promotes ojas in the body.
Digestion, when respected, supports healthy weight, consciousness, balanced moods, beauty and bliss; when disrespected, toxins accumulate and have the potential to cause many problems. There is an amazing potential for health, balance and bliss available in balanced, strong digestion. Vaidyas (Ayurvedic experts) recommend Organic Digest Tone (Triphala Plus), as this traditional, revered herbal formulation supports all other herbal products you take.
How Organic Digest Tone Cleanses and Rejuvenates:
  • Rejuvenates the digestive tract
  • Assists the body in absorbing nutrients from food. Organic Digest Tone is antioxidant-rich.
  • Promotes healthy circulation and includes capillary-supporting flavonoids; works as a cardio tonic
  • Helps cleanse the liver of toxins and supports its efficient functioning
  • Helps body tissue to detoxify slowly, including blood, muscle and fat tissues
  • Assists with maintaining healthy levels of cholesterol
  • Constituents include vitamin C and quercetin
  • Supports respiratory health
  • Assists the body with normal elimination, acting as a mild laxative
  • Assists the body in weight balance
  • As an added benefit, it is nourishing to both the eyes and the skin
Tips for Promoting Healthy Digestion and Elimination:
  • Avoid eating leftovers and foods that contain preservatives. Your body has to work harder to eliminate these impurities from the liver and cells.
  • Avoid cold drinks, as these reduce digestive power.
  • Drink plenty of warm water to help flush toxins from the body. Consider drinking Organic Kapha Tea, which stimulates sluggish metabolism and digestion, with meals.
  • Avoid cigarette smoke, alcohol, drugs, chemicals, pollution and exposure to other toxins as much as possible.
  • Go to bed by 10 p.m. so the body can rest during its natural purification cycle from 10 p.m. to 2 a.m.
  • Eat your main meal at noon, when your digestive fire is high.
  • Engage in light, pleasant conversation while you're eating to support good digestion.
  • Don’t watch TV, read or work while you're eating. It's best to eat consciously, paying attention to the taste and texture of your food as well as how it makes you feel. Let your body be your guide, as it instinctively knows what is best for it.
  • Eat plenty of green, leafy vegetables and stick to a high-fiber diet of fresh fruits, vegetables and grains.
  • Cook with Ayurvedic herbs and flavors, including Ayurvedic Spice Mixes like VataPitta, and Kapha Churna.
  • For free Ayurvedic recipes, self-care guides, podcasts and newsletters, be sure to visit www.mapi.com.


Disclaimer
The sole purpose of these articles is to provide information about the tradition of ayurveda. This information is not intended for use in the diagnosis, treatment, cure or prevention of any disease. If you have any serious acute or chronic health concern, please consult a trained health professional who can fully assess your needs and address them effectively. If you are seeking the medical advice of a trained ayurvedic expert, call or e-mail us for the number of a physician in your area. Check with your doctor before taking herbs or using essential oils when pregnant or nursing.

Thursday, November 2, 2017

9 Tips to Live Ayurveda This Fall

Keeping with our theme of your health and Fall/Autumn, take a look at this article our very own Manas Kshirsagar wrote for Mapi.com.  


9 Tips to Live Ayurveda This Fall

As we transition into the fall season, the season of Vata, we can empower ourselves by bringing as much energy and happiness as possible into our everyday life with these simple ayurvedic tips. With a few easy changes in our routine, it may surprise you how easily we can transition from one season into the next!
Be with Nature
Take time every day for a walk in the sun. Early morning is a wonderful time. Turn off the phone and listen to the sounds of nature or the environment, wherever you are.

Eat Mindful Meals

Energy, calm, and joy — obtainable from the food that we eat. The trick, according to ayurveda, is to eat in accord with the rhythm of the seasons. As you read this, subtle changes in season have set in already. From October through February, when it is colder and dry, Vata qualities tend to dominate. To balance the effects of fall Vata, start with this resolution: "I will favor warm, cooked foods that nourish my body; have my main meal at lunch; and eat dinner at least three hours before going to sleep… before 10 p.m…” If we can keep this simple resolve, we'll be rewarded with some excellent health benefits. Here are some suggestions to help you decide on which foods to eat and what to avoid this season: Cook with olive oil or ghee, both of which balance and calm restless Vata. Drink Organic Vata Tea — thermos it, drink it and share it. Brew it in hot milk for a special Vata-balancing treat. Avoid raw foods, cold sandwiches, cold salads, and dry cereals with cold milk! Instead, try beginning the day with a warm stewed apple (get the recipe here!) or pear, and/or either oatmeal or cream of wheat cereal made with part or all milk. Eat well-cooked vegetables, rice with ghee, and mung dahl soup for lunch, made with Vata-balancing spices such as turmeric and cumin; or try our Organic Vata Churna. Snack on a chapati (flat bread made of wheat), soaked dates, or fresh non-acidic fruit with warm milk. Stay away from coffee and other caffeinated drinks, as they aggravate Vata. Try hearty soups and bread for dinner. Take a cup of warm milk with a pinch of nutmeg and some sugar or honey just before bedtime to promote sound sleep (remember to add the honey when the milk has cooled, as heated honey is considered very hard to digest and is actually toxic, according to ayurveda).

Try the Vata-Balancing Herbal Pack

Organic Calming Vata TeaWorry Free and Organic Ashwagandha. Don’t be deceived by the name… If you have any Vata-aggravated symptoms, Worry Free is one of our most powerful Vata-balancing formulas and, taken with our Organic Ashwagandha, it is a hard combination to beat!

Take a Rasayana


Try Amrit Kalash, our herbal rasayana that has been shown to defuse destructive, age-accelerating free radicals 1,000 times better than antioxidant vitamins C or E.
Add Exercise to Your Routine

Children, work, stress — we all have activities in our lives that can compel us to put exercise on the back burner. But those who have discovered how to weave a simple workout into their days are those who look and live younger. Does "working out" conjure in your mind visions of heavy weights and marathon runs? Relax. Light, non-strenuous exercise like walking or yoga asanas is a wonderful addition to our routine. Done regularly, these activities yield tremendous balancing and healing benefits and can enhance our experience during meditation.

Use Healing Aromatherapy


Beat the stress of your week by treating your senses to healing aroma oils every evening. Lavender is only one among dozens of aromas that can promote feelings of calm and cheer. Our dosha-balancing Aroma Oils are a great way to scent a room naturally and balance our body. When inhaled, the scents have a healing influence on the limbic area of the brain, which controls memory and emotions. Our oils are specifically formulated to balance the doshas… vpk. Use the scent that smells the best at the time you are ready to use the aroma. Let your body guide your decision.

Find Balance, Not Perfection

This week, go to work with the resolve that you'll seek balance in everything you do — not perfection. The quest for perfection is what stresses us out; however, the quest for balance restores us! Breathe deep — this will help you remain calm under pressure. Are you happy in what you are doing? Are you bringing joy to others? If not, what are your options? Reexamine your goals and priorities — even small ones. Share some joy with those around you. In all you do, seek to feel good about yourself and other people. Balance is the keyword in ayurvedic healing: if you work, love, eat, play, and live in moderation, you'll live long and happy. And there's no better time to remember this than on a full, busy schedule.

Give Your Skin Some Love


Self-massage, or the ayurvedic technique of abhyanga with a good-quality oil is now, more than ever, an essential. It really does need your attention — especially now that the drying Vata dosha is in the air, and deep winter just around the corner. It is no doubt easier to think about skin care on the weekend, but if you devote even 15 minutes to your skin every day, you'll feel an amazing difference in skin texture and complexion. If you already have a dry, Vata-type skin, then these 15 minutes will count even more. Our rich Youthful Skin Massage Oils for Men and Women are a luxury worth experiencing. Just 15 minutes! That's all it takes.

Heal Yourself Helping Others


Sattva, or goodness, is the highest of qualities, say ayurvedic healers. Take time to help others in need. Stay rested and nurture your heart and those around you. By helping others, done with pure intent, we heal ourselves.



*by  on 
Disclaimer
The sole purpose of these articles is to provide information about the tradition of ayurveda. This information is not intended for use in the diagnosis, treatment, cure or prevention of any disease. If you have any serious acute or chronic health concern, please consult a trained health professional who can fully assess your needs and address them effectively. If you are seeking the medical advice of a trained ayurvedic expert, call or e-mail us for the number of a physician in your area. Check with your doctor before taking herbs or using essential oils when pregnant or nursing.

Thursday, October 26, 2017

Ayurveda, Autumn, and Eating

Ayurveda teaches us to synchronize with the seasons.  We can do this in many ways beginning with aligning our sleep habits with the sun and moon to eating foods that are in season.  Within this life-style, recommendations can vary depending on your Dosha.  This is why having a consultation with our Ayurvedic Doctor, Manas S Kshirsagar,  is a great idea and arms you with invaluable information to begin your journey back to health! 

An article posted recently on Chopra.com teaches us all about eating with the seasons particularly the beautiful fall season we're entering now.  The author, Brittany Wright, even breaks this down into early fall and late fall.  It's an amazing read packed with tons of information and even a 1-day sample menu plan!  Here's an excerpt from her article. 


AUTUMN EATING
Ayurveda divides the year into three seasons based on the predominant dosha associated with each. Since the traditional autumn season is divided between two doshas—early autumn is governed by Pitta, and late autumn and winter are governed by Vata—dietary recommendations for this time of year may be confusing.  Luckily, you can eat well during this time by choosing seasonal foods. These foods tend to provide just the antidote you need to balance the transition from the Pitta months of summer to Vata-ruled winter.

Vata: The Dosha of Wind

Vata season, which begins in late fall (usually considered to be any time after late October combines the elements of air and space. The qualities that characterize this time of year are like those of Vata: cold, dry, light, and quick-moving.
Positive qualities of a Vata dosha include:
  • Creativity
  • High energy
  • Enthusiasm
  • High degree of tolerance
  • Good temper
During fall, everyone is more susceptible to a Vata imbalance—even if your predominant dosha is not Vata. Signs of excess, imbalanced Vata dosha can include:
  • Anxiety
  • Poor ability to focus or commit
  • Insomnia
  • Gas and bloating
  • Dry skin, hair, and/or nails
  • Weight loss
Since Ayurveda recognizes that “like qualities increase other like qualities,” people with primarily Vata dispositions are at greater risk of a Vata excess during the late fall and winter months. You can benefit from adding qualities of Kapha (heavy and oily) as well as Pitta (warm and moist) through the foods and beverages you consume during this season in order to maintain sattva, or a balance, within the body.

WANT TO READ MORE?  CLICK LINK TO FINISH THIS ARTICLE http://www.chopra.com/articles/autumn-eating-ayurvedic-tips-for-fall

Thursday, October 19, 2017

Yoga And Weight Loss

I can’t tell you how many advertisements and fitness programs I see marketing ‘Yoga for weight loss’.  Beginning a yoga practice with the goal or intention of wanting to lose weight is not a bad thing.  On one hand, I’m so happy that yoga finds its way into our lives through whatever door it can.  On the other hand, I can’t lie, I do get frustrated when we attempt to sell the concept of yoga by trying to hook us with how it can change our appearance.  This not only strips away the essence of yoga but dangerously encourages our tendency to focus on the physical.  My hope is that, if someone begins to practice yoga because of the enticement of losing weight, that they continue to practice because of the peace, healing, and self-acceptance the sacred practice creates.

Don’t get me wrong!  The commitment to a yoga practice can absolutely encourage weight loss and it is extremely effective when it comes to lasting weight loss.  But not because you mindlessly move in and out of poses with the attempt to become breathless and increase your heart rate.  Those who practice yoga regularly, begin to lose weight because of the internal work they are cultivating which in turn brings so many positive changes into their life and they learn to value more than just losing weight. Not sure what I mean?  Let me explain, what I believe, the 3 main reasons yoga may encourage weight loss.



AWARENESS

As you practice yoga regularly, you become more aware.  Aware of everything!  Your breath, your feelings, emotions, others around you, and most importantly…your body.  You begin, sometimes for the first time, to feel your body.  Noticing how certain people’s energy makes you feel, you notice how a food or drink makes you feel physically.  You begin to connect the dots that you hadn’t noticed before (i.e. when you drink too much caffeine you feel anxious or when you don’t get enough sleep you crave ‘not so good for you’ comfort foods).  This body awareness is huge and, in most cases, only begins to develop when you allow yourself the time to just be.  To witness.  To observe.  Yoga!

GRATITUDE

Those who practice yoga regularly develop a deep sense of gratitude.  Gratitude for their breath, for waking up in the morning, or for a simple cup of tea.  They feel gratitude in everyday things that we generally take for granted.  We don’t mean to!  We’re just so busy that we don’t create the time or space to pause and reflect allowing for grace to flow into our lives.  Yoga allows for this time and space.  When we feel gratitude for everything, it not only changes our biochemistry (from a state of stress fight/flight to a state of relaxation/peace) we begin to treat our body as the sacred temple it is.  We feel so much gratitude for all that our body does that we treat it better and in ways that cultivate health.  We eat nourishing foods, we drink plenty of water (which our body is 60-70%), and we make sure we get enough sleep.  Yoga cultivates so many sacred blessings and one that is universal is the awakening and appreciation of the body temple.  You just begin to look at and treat your body differently.



BREATH

Breath is life!  It’s that connection to our spirit.  I could write for hours on breath and breathwork but in relation to yoga and weight loss, I believe our breath cultivates health deep within.  When you practice yoga, you learn breathing techniques to cultivate everything from weight loss to better sleep but what’s most important to me is the cultivation of simply breath awareness.  You begin to become more aware of your breath…always.  You notice that as you get angry or anxious…your breath shallows and quickens.  Most people walk through life breathing in this way from chronic stress.  This type of chest breathing not only creates more stress within the body but it allows for *dis-ease to manifest in the body.  This is because when we’re not breathing fully and completely, we’re not allowing Prana (life force) to enter our body, organs, cells.  It’s as if we’re just getting by with as little Prana (Life) as possible.  When we practice yoga regularly, we become aware, we feel when we’re not breathing completely.  And it feels awful! I believe, those that practice yoga, have more Prana flowing through their body which creates a less stressed and a vibrant healthy body temple.

Yoga is sacred and a blessing.  It creates a space for miraculous things to happen.  Remember, wanting to begin a yoga practice with the goal for losing weight isn’t a ‘bad’.  My hope is that while you’re on that journey, you embrace all that yoga offers.  And remember, you are so much more than your physical body.  You are a beautiful soul who is worthy simply because you are YOU.

In Love & Gratitude,
Joy Arnold

*The word dis-ease is not being used as a medical term or diagnosis.  It simply means being out of balance and not in union.

Thursday, October 5, 2017

Fall And Your Health

A few days ago, I shared with you an article I found on Chopra center detailing how fall is a great time for cleansing and clearing.  Our Ayurvedic Doctor, Manas Kshirsagar, coincidentally sent me this article on Mapi echoing the same sentiment about fall and cleansing.  Both articles are informative and have a slightly different focus.  The article below from Mapi even lists spices, herbs, and herbal supplements that are ideal for fall.  
*Mapi Affiliate

Here's an excerpt;

As the dog days of summer wind down and a hint of crisp fall weather cools the night air, you might find yourself suddenly looking forward to going back to school or picking up the pace at work after a lazier summer.
The seasons affect us. A saying in Maharishi Ayurveda, "As is the macrocosm, so is the microcosm," captures an important principle: the outer environment affects our inner state of mind and body. When the weather is hot and humid during Pitta season (July-October), those Pitta qualities of heat build in the body as well. When the air is cool and dry in Vata season (November-February), we experience more of those qualities inside us.

Want to read the article in its entirety?  Click here Mapi Aricle

Disclaimer
The sole purpose of these articles is to provide information about the tradition of ayurveda. This information is not intended for use in the diagnosis, treatment, cure or prevention of any disease. If you have any serious acute or chronic health concern, please consult a trained health professional who can fully assess your needs and address them effectively. If you are seeking the medical advice of a trained ayurvedic expert, call or e-mail us for the number of a physician in your area. Check with your doctor before taking herbs or using essential oils when pregnant or nursing.

Wednesday, October 4, 2017

Fall. A time for cleansing and releasing.

Crisp mornings, cool breeze, and the sun setting earlier and earlier.  Fall is upon us!  I love the change of seasons from summer to fall.  It's such a beautiful time to reflect, cleanse, and release.  The other day, I stumbled upon this article on Chopra.com where author, Tris Thorp, writes about this exact concept.  It's a beautiful article filled with tips and a guided meditation at the end.  Read her article below.

Fall Meditation to Embody Openness and Self-Reflection

Ancient cultures welcomed the changing of seasons by adapting to and synchronizing themselves with nature’s cycles and rhythms. For many of us in modern day society, autumn is marked by the leaves changing color, back-to-school sales, and the arrival of fall d├ęcor in department stores. 
While you’re pulling out your favorite cozy sweaters and sipping pumpkin spice lattes, mother nature is busy pruning her limbs and preparing for what’s to come. If you slow down and look a little closer at what the fall season represents, it’s an incredibly auspicious time for doing deeper work within yourself. 

Fall Is for Self-Reflection

Autumn is symbolized by the balancing of light and dark—both in the world of nature and in your own psyche. As you transition from the longer days of summer to the shorter days of fall, you may sense that a new harmony must be created so that you can manage the way your life flows. Fall is a time for winding down and going inward for self-reflection as you prepare for the coming months. 
Shifting the conversation internally invites you to consider what practices will enable you to slow down, enter into a quiet space, and consider how you may benefit from doing some pruning of your own. As you adapt to shorter days and cooler temps, it’s the perfect time to light a fire, open your journal, and establish an effective practice for letting go of anything you no longer need.  

Fall Is for Letting Go

You may struggle with the concept of impermanence in your life and yet, the one thing you can be certain of is that change is always occurring. The more adaptable you can become to the changing of tides—or, in this case, the seasons—and the more fluent you become in the art of pruning useless thoughts, behaviors, and patterns from your life, the better prepared you are for receiving the next round of gifts life has to bestow upon you. 
To learn this art of letting go, you only need to look to nature and how she transitions through each of her seasons. There is a continuous cycle of birth, transformation, and death occurring—literally and metaphorically. One season comes to an end and another begins—sometimes gradually, sometimes abruptly. Phases of your life will come to an end before another begins. Notice what energies are asking to be brought to completion in your own life at this time. Ask yourself the following:
  •    What action do you need to take in order to honor your own cycles of beginning, middle, and end?
  •    What are you holding onto that’s no longer necessary? 
  •    What baggage are you still lugging around that’s weighing you down? 
  •    Where are you struggling against the inevitable? 
Negative thoughts, limiting beliefs, and behaviors that sabotage your career, health, and relationships need to be released the moment they are presented to you. This is your own internal guidance letting you know that this “thing” that may have had a purpose in your past is now ready to come to completion and be released. Often times you may hold onto the old in fear of the unknown, and that can be scary. However, releasing the old and letting the energy transition into something new can be a beautiful thing. 

Fall Is for Being Open to New Opportunities

Holding onto negative emotions, limiting beliefs, and sabotaging behaviors creates stress and is bad for your physical, emotional, and mental bodies. It’s harmful to your well-being, your sense of self-worth, and your ability to be the person you are meant to be in this world. You cannot expect to begin a new journey until you’ve brought your previous one to completion. If you do, you bring old, dead weight onto your new path, which is sure to cause problems down the road. 
You may be familiar with the old saying by Alexander Graham Bell, “When one door closes another door opens.” This excerpt is actually part of a longer quote, which reads “When one door closes another door opens, but we so often look so long and so regretfully upon the closed door, that we do not see the ones which open for us.” 
If you don’t take the time to mindfully (and regularly) prune your branches, the dead weight you carry forth won’t have the fortitude to birth any new seedlings in the future. In other words, there may be other things waiting to come into being that you aren’t even aware of because you’re still caught up in your old junk. This is an example of opportunities lost, and there’s nothing worse at the end of your days than having regret for not living your life with passion and purpose. 
Even worse, the effects of stress may overburden your physical, emotional, and mental bodies to the point it creates illness or disease. If you want to live a life where you feel energized, passionate, motivated, and fulfilled, this is the perfect time to stop and take inventory of what you need to dump. Use this guided visualization to assist you with pruning what’s ready to come to completion and prepare yourself for what’s to come. 
Image result for meditation

Guided Meditation for Fall

To begin, minimize your distractions by silencing your cell phone and letting others know you need some quiet time alone to meditate. 
  1. Find a comfortable seat, close your eyes, and begin to wind down by taking several slow deep breaths.
  2. Use your breath to go inward and connect with any sensations, images, feelings, or thoughts that may be present.
  3. In this space of stillness and quietude, set an intention that you are ready to let go of anything that is ready to be released.
  4. Take a few moments to consider how everything has its own cycle of beginning, middle, and end—that the energy of completion is actually a good thing. It’s required for your continued growth. 
  5. Next, bring to mind something in your life that you know has reached it’s time to be brought to completion and breathe into the knowingness that to accept impermanence is healthy for your spiritual, mental, emotional, and physical evolution. 
  6. Ask yourself what you would need to know in order to feel safe and secure in letting go of anything that no longer serves you. Listen for the answers, allowing them to come forth from your heart or intuition. Trust whatever comes up for you.
  7. Now allow yourself to see a vision of what would be possible for you when you let this go. What new possibility awaits you on your path once you let go of the old? Enhance the visual details of your vision (color, contrast, size, and brightness) to be as powerful, as positive, and as rich as possible. 
  8. Now that you have had a glimpse into what awaits you, ask your internal wisdom to tell you what action step you need to take in order to prune away any old branches in your life at this time so that you can fully step into this new vision for yourself and your life. Listen for the answers. 
  9. As you hear the messages from your heart guiding you in where and how to take action, open your eyes and take out your journal. Begin to record any insight or messages, as well as any action steps you got in your journal. 
  10. Close your eyes again, take a few deep breaths, and thank yourself for taking this time to go within and make a commitment to follow through with the action steps you need to take to clear out the old. 
You may often find that letting go of things that have run their course is easier than you may have previously imagined. And, in the case where you weren’t aware that it was time to release something that was ready to be done, it can feel like a massive weight has been lifted off you. Now, it’s up to you to keep your newly pruned path clear to receive new insight, new direction, and infinite possibilities. 
Author
Lead Educator and Vedic Educator

Wednesday, September 27, 2017

What Is Earthing Or Grounding?



(Image above shows before and after earthing-red depicts inflammation)

Grounding or earthing is the practice of coming in contact with the earth for the purpose balance.  It is vital for health and wellness (both mental and physical).  Our bodies are flooded with free radicals (positively charged ions).  In excess, this can be extremely acidic and inflammatory for our body leading to illness, anxiety, chronic pain, and dis-ease.  When we go outside, walk barefoot, garden, sit in the grass, etc., the negative ions in the earth act as a major antioxidant riding the body of excess free radicals creating balance.  Grounding has been shown to reduce systemic inflammation, reduce anxiety, reduce stress (by lowering cortisol levels), reduce chronic pain, improve sleep, increase energy, and even helps support the adrenal system (organs associated with anxiety).  The Universe has given us all the tools we need to support health and well-being.  It’s up to us to embrace them.

With Love & Gratitude,
Joy Arnold
@thespiritofjoy