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When spring arrives, all the cold and frozen water in the ground begins to melt, the snow that has fallen during the winter in the high mountains begins to flow like rivers towards the towns, results in the heat of the sun.

Spring season is followed by the winter season, in India it can be called from March, April and May, this season ends in the form of the summer season. In India, people do not fully enjoy this season because of the warm atmosphere here.

As the season changes to summer our body, face the changes from cold and frozen temperature to hot climate which increase the Kapha dosha in us.

Therefore, some typical Kapha discomforts are seen at this time of year begin to manifest, for example:

  • You have digestion problems of any kind
  • You have intense cravings for very sweet or very salty foods
  • You feel tired almost all day, even in the mornings
  • You lack energy in general
  • You feel melancholic and somewhat depressed
  • You feel a subtle and undefined malaise that prevents you from spending your days with joy
  • You have accumulated a few extra pounds
  • You feel the heaviness of body and mind
  • You have excess mucus, allergies, phlegm or congestion in general

You may have one more of all the imbalances we have mentioned. You may also have them to a greater or lesser degree because it will depend on what your birth constitution or Prakriti is and how you have looked after yourself during the year.

If you do not know which is your constitution of birth you can do a test of your Doshas. For all these reasons spring or so-called summer in India is considered the best time to do a detox or cleaning process. Since it helps to cleanse us of all the toxins accumulated during the winter so that they flow out of our body like the rivers towards the sea.

You can choose the duration of days of your fast according to your needs and the capacity of your body to support the process. You can try to fast 1 day, 3 days, 5 days or more up to 21 days, but for fasts of more than a week it is good to have the supervision of a specialist.

Health benefits of fasting

Cleansing in Ayurveda way will help you detoxify your body from the imbalances of the 3 doshas, Vata, Pitta, and Kapha and eliminate them through the digestive tract. Among its benefits, you will see some of the below changes.

  • It will help calm the nervous system.
  • Promote clarity and spiritual aspects in you
  • It will give you an improved sense of energy, vitality, and enthusiasm for life.
  • Support the maintenance of a healthy body weight
  • Promote a regular and balanced elimination of toxins
  • It will help you recover your natural balance
  • Prepare tissues for deep nutrition
  • Will rejuvenate you inside and out
Why We Eat Kitchari for Cleansing?

Sometimes we may feel a sense of heaviness or some other sign that our body may be intoxicated. The Kitchari is a traditional Ayurvedic dish that offers essential nutrients to support the digestive system in its detoxification and cleansing process, which will help us feel lighter.

It is an ideal food for those people who have the little digestive capacity and a lot of accumulation of Ama (toxins). It is hot and energizing, it helps us to recover the digestive fire ( Agni ), to balance the 3 Doshas and to improve the practice of Yoga.

It is a well-known recipe and used in purification processes during seasonal changes (especially in spring). It can also be consumed as a mono-diet. It is a sattvic meal, recommended within an Ayurvedic lifestyle It is also ideal for children and the elderly, or those who are in periods of convalescence.

It is an intermediate stage between illness and health, during which the body gradually regains vitality and health since it is easy to digest compared with other legumes. This dish is made with mung beans (moong dal), basmati rice, spices if you want you can add seasonal vegetables (according to the constitution), and ghee (or clarified butter).

Mung beans are notable for their high protein content (25 g per 100 g), fiber and carbohydrates, as well as their low-fat content. It is rich in B vitamins, including B1, B3, B6 and particularly folic acid (B9). It is also rich in minerals such as magnesium, iron, phosphorus, potassium, copper, calcium and selenium.

How to Make Kitchari?

Here is a simple Recipe of Kitchari that can be made easily at home.

Ingredients:
  • 1 cup basmati rice.
  • 1/2 cup of mung beans or split red lentils.
  • One teaspoon of  Ghee.
  • Spices according to your preference (ginger, turmeric, fennel seeds or cumin).
  • A handful of chopped cilantro leaves.
  • A little salt (optional).
Preparation:
  • Thoroughly wash beans or lentils and rice.
  • Melt the Golden Ghee in the pot and add the spices.
  • Add the rice and beans or lentils together with 6 cups of water and bring to boil.
  • After boiling, let cook over medium heat until the vegetables are cooked (approximately 25 minutes).
  • You can incorporate the vegetables you want during cooking or apart at the end.
  • When serving, add the coriander leaves over the Kitchari.
Fruit fasting for healing

Another option to the traditional Ayurvedic cleansing is to try a fast based on fruits or juices for the same duration, choosing the fruits according to your constitution or the dosha that you have more unbalanced. Some recommendations are:

  1. Vata: grapes, pineapples, plums, mangoes, papayas, oranges, kiwis, strawberries
  2. Pitta: red apple, coconut, red grapes, melon, pomegranates, pears
  3. Kapha: apples, blueberries, peaches, pear, plums
Ayurvedic herbs to remove toxins from the body

Additionally, you can accompany your fast with Ayurvedic herbs that will help you boost the detoxifying and rejuvenating effect:

1. Triphala churna

It is one of the most recognized formulas in Ayurveda to cleanse and detoxify the colon and digestive system. If you suffer from constipation, bloating, gas, bad digestion, take 2 capsules or 500 mg to one gram per of Triphala at night before going to sleep will be of great help.

2. Parsley

An Ayurveda formula designed especially for cleaning liver and kidneys. These organs are essential for the detoxification of our body and often some failure of them leads us to feel various discomforts.

So if you think something in them is not working well this is the ideal time of year to give them a little help. For a correct liver and kidney cleansing, you can take Parsley juice in the morning.

This medicinal plant can provide chlorophyll, a vegetable substance that, in additional have antiseptic properties, and offers us a large number of antioxidants to optimize renal function.

3. Brahmi

This plant helps us to calm the nervous system, it gives us clarity and peace of mind, it takes away the bulging and heaviness of the mind so typical of this season.

A fresh juice of 10-20 ml or Brahmi powder dose of 2–3 grams at night before bed you can rest better and wake up with an open mind in the mornings.

During fasts of mono diet, either with kitchari or fruit the idea is not to eat another type of food. Taking infusions of  Brahmi juice during the day will help us in cleaning and purifying through the urine.

Beside this Tulsi infusions are also perfect for this, they are digestive, anti-stress, lift the mood and balance the metabolism. If you are taking anxiolytics, you must speak with your doctor before to see if you can or not to take Brahmi.

Note: Before fasting take advise of doctor if you are extremely weak or convalescing from a disease, or you are pregnant or breastfeeding.

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In Ayurvedic philosophy, plants are the soul of the earth. According to Ayurveda, our body, we are made of the same elements as of our environment.

Our body works accordingly to the same principles as the rest of the universe works. There are several hundred plants mentioned in Ayurveda, that are used traditionally and are supposed to rebalance the doshas when necessary.

All these plants can impact on the doshas, they can be effective to power the digestive systems, in the regulation of weight, intellectual abilities, and in the prevention of degenerative diseases, joint pain or the fight against free radicals responsible for aging. Bellow here is some of the lists of plants that are most commonly uses to balance the three doshas.

I. List of ayurvedic plants to balance Doshas

Ayurveda has been in use for centuries, it is a science that involves the use of naturally occurring substances. These natural substances can be in various form of the plant, minerals, flowers, leaves, vitamins, fruits, minerals, etc. to combat diseases.

According to Ayurveda a state of well-being and satisfactory health depend on the harmonious balance of the 3 doshas. Below is the list that is effective to balance the doshas.

1. Aloe Vera (Ghritkumari)

Ayurveda gives it the name as “vitality of youth” it is because this plant is famous for improving digestion. It has the exceptional richness of its juice that provides the body with the means to react to external aggressions.

Thanks to the presence of digestive enzymes that promote the assimilation and digestion of nutrients in food. Aloe Vera balances the three doshas.

2. Indian Gooseberry(Amalaki)

A powerful antioxidant fruit, it provides the body with a significant amount of polyphenols that preserve the cells of aging. The Amalaki is helpful to smokers and alcohol consumers, as they need more polyphenols and vitamin C.

Amalaki is a fruit that has this property more than any other fruits. Amalaki is suitable for all three doshas and especially when there is an imbalance of Pitta.

3. Ginger (Adaraka)

In Ayurveda ginger is widely used, a small piece of ginger is an entire medicine in itself. There is a famous ayurvedic sutra (verse) that says that everyone should eat fresh ginger just before lunch and dinner to enhance digestion.

The Adaraka, so-called ginger is used in Ayurvedic medicine for an aphrodisiac, cardiotonic, activator digestion and stimulating blood circulation. Its qualities make it beneficial for Vata and Kapha disorders.

4. Andrographis (Kalmegh)

It is a true natural shield, the Andrographis is renowned for stimulating natural defenses and contributing to better respiratory comfort, especially anticipatory, as the cold season’s approach.

It has a drying and anti-mucous effect in case of stuffy or runny nose, its anti-bacterial and anti-inflammatory action also allows it to eradicate sore throats. Andrographis soothes Pitta and Kapha but may increase Vata.

5. Aegle marmelos (Bilva)

Bael is also known as Bilva in the Sanskrit language, this herb has its own importance as medicinal, spiritual and religious significance. The fruits and leaves are used as offerings to the Hindu Gods like Lord Shiva.

Bilva helps relieve gastric disturbances such as the frequent need for bowel movements, stomach pain, and intestinal tightness. It rebalances the 3 doshas, especially Kapha and Vata.

6. Boswellia serrata (Sallaki)

It is a famous herb of Ayurveda which is used mainly for joint pain, Boswellia soothes Pitta considerably and can also reduce Kapha. It by blocking Pitta’s fire, acts as a regulator of inflammation, thus decreasing the intensity of joint pain. In high doses, it can slightly increase Vata.

7. Bacopa monnieri (Brahmi)

The Brahmi is known to be a brain tonic that increases memory capacity. At the time when Ayurveda was transmitted orally, this plant has properties that stimulate the memorization of an impressive amount according to the verse of the written text of Ayurveda.

Indians also call this herb as “plant of wisdom” and consider it a valuable ally for practicing yoga and meditation. This herb Brahmi rebalances the three doshas, it is particularly effective in calming the excitement of the Pitta nervous system.

8. Centella Asiatica (Gotu Kola)

It stimulates intellectual alertness and improves concentration. This plant is particularly useful in times of stress or intense reflection (extra work, decisions to be made).

Indeed, its soothing action makes it possible to preserve all its faculties in the face of complicated situations, even to increase the concentration when it is necessary.

The Centella Asiatica balances the three doshas and is particularly effective in calming the excitement of the nervous system of Pitta.

9. Coleus forskohlii (Makandi)

It is also an important herb of Ayurveda, it has a property called “Forskolin” a chemical found in the roots of the plant. In ancient time this plant has been used to treat heart disorders such as high blood pressure, chest pain (angina), as well as respiratory disorders such as asthma.

It helps to prevent the fixing of fat and eliminate accumulated fat and small undesirable curves. The Coleus soothes Pitta and Kapha and Vata balance.

10. Garcinia Indica (Kokum)

Garcinia indica is Mangosteen which is commonly known as “kokum” in hindi and Vrikshamla in Ayurveda. It is fruit that looks like a small plum and have significant health benefit, it includes reducing allergic reactions, healing wounds, optimizes digestion etc.

Beside this it also helps to reduce appetite, snacking cravings, processed fat and fat storage. Garcinia balances Kapha and Vata and is particularly beneficial for Pitta.

11. Commiphora wightii (Guggul)

Guggual is another tree that has been used in Ayurvedic medicine for centuries, it recommend for treating atherosclerosis. Besides this Guggul promotes weight loss, helps to purify the body, and helps to fight against cholesterol.

It is also recommended it to eliminate “fats in the blood”, Guggul is today used to significantly reduce the level of cholesterol and triglycerides in the blood. Guggul is particularly effective in stabilizing the imbalances of Vata and Kapha without irritating Pitta.

12. Gymnema Sylvestre (Gurmar)

It activates the metabolism of glucose and decreases the craving for sugar which helps in treatment of diabetes. Thus, when chewing Gymnema Sylvestre leaves, the tongue is unable to feel the mild flavor for about an hour.

Gurmar have have anti-inflammatory properties that helps to protect your body from harmful organisms in cases of  infection or injury. Gymnema Sylvestris soothes Kapha and is neutral for Pitta and Vata.

13. Turmeric (Haridra)

The Haridra is known as Curcuma Longa or Saffron of India in Europe, is of a formidable wealth in Curcumin, its active substance. According to ayurveda it is katu and tikta in taste and cleanses and detoxifies Rasa the Digestive juice and circulatory nutrition.

Which thus enables free circulation of nutrients to every cell of the body and helps in restoring the normal body functions. The powerful antioxidant in it naturally protects the cells of the body from aging. Warming up for the three doshas, the Haridra rebalances Kapha.

14. Velvet bean (Kaunch)

Mucuna pruriens is one of the popular medicinal plant of  ayurveda. It have a natural source of L-dopa, the precursor of dopamine, a neurotransmitter essential to the balance of each. Rebalancing nervous, Mucuna or so called kaunch in hindi awakens the joy of life, reduces the effects of stress and releases the energies positively.

Beside this Mucuna seeds powder have an aphrodisiac effect which play an important role in improving the sexual stamina and strength in men.  The Mucuna balances the three doshas. In too large doses, it strengthens Kapha and Pitta. It is a precious tonic that balances Vata.

15. Azadirachta Indica (Neem)

Neem leaf is traditionally eaten for its powerful hypoglycemic effect. The uses of neem or its products have been used in India for centuries for its medicinal properties.

It is used in Ayurvedic medicine in as antifungal, anti-bacterial, anti-stress, detoxifying and for slimming. Neem can serve Kapha and Pitta people for rebalancing but can exacerbate the problems of Vata people.

16. Asparagus racemosus (Shatavari)

It is the ally of the woman at the different stages of her life. The Shatavari is used in case of premenstrual symptoms and menopause (alleviates pain, hot flashes and regulates moods).

This plant promotes lubrication and flexibility of the genital tract. Shatavari also means “one who has 100 husbands” in Sanskrit. The Shatavari helps in balancing for Pitta and Vata, if taken in excess, it can slightly increase Kapha.

17. Tamarin (Imli)

Tamarin is also known as imli in hindi, it is a herb that is used for cooking as well as for medicinal purposes. There are many used of Tamarin mentioned in ayurveda, it  have anti-inflammatory properties that can help to reduce inflammation.

Beside this it also helps people who have difficulty with bowel movement thanks to its laxative action. The juice of Tamarin rebalances the 3 doshas.

18. Tribulus (Gokharu)

Tribulus terrestris is also known as gokharu in hindi, it is a well known plant that is used in unani medicine as well as ayurveda. In ayurveda it is believed to contribute to overall physical,  such as strength building, sexual, and boost tissues, especially shukra dhatu (reproductive tissue).

Tribulus stimulates sexual abilities and desire in men and women. It also increases the production of testosterone, useful to the sportsman for his action on muscular development. It stimulates and balances the 3 doshas.

19. Holy Basil (Tulsi)

It is used in Ayurvedic medicine to cleanse the body and the mind, Tulsi is a precious plant in India, hence its name of “holy basil”. It is a plant that is often found grown in Hindu homes for its medical and spiritual benefits.

It is rich in camphor, this remarkable support of natural defenses indeed influences the freedom of the respiratory tracts (especially bronchi), the health of our organs (kidneys, heart, liver, gallbladder, stomach, intestines) and our nervous system. The Tulsi soothes the three doshas.

II. List of Spices & Garam Masala Used in Food

According to Ayurveda, diet is our best medicine and spices have three major advantages in this respect, they enhance the flavor of cooked dishes, help to balance the 3 doshas and are excellent for health.

Some spices are the basis of mixtures known as Kari, the Tandoori or Garam Masala.

1. Cardamom (Elaichi)

Cardamom reveals a haunting fragrance, both sweet and spicy. Known to stimulate digestion, it avoids bloating and can even stimulate transit. 

2. Clove (Laung)

Its full-bodied taste accompanies infusions, gingerbreads or vegetables, and its beneficial effects make it almost indispensable in spice compositions. Clove is antibacterial, anti-inflammatory and very effective in soothing stomach upset.

3. Coriander (Dhania)

The basic ingredient for Kari (Curry) blends, coriander has a refreshing flavor. Particularly appreciated for its digestive action, it would also have aphrodisiac properties.

4. Cumin (Jeera)

This Spice is strong enough in taste, the Cumin is used to raise the flavors of the dishes, as much as to open the appetite. The cumin so-called jeera if taken with hot water is helpful in strengthening our digestive as well as the circulatory system. it balances our tri-doshas, vata, pita and Kapha.

5. Turmeric (Haridra)

The orange-yellow color of Curcuma is easily identifiable, for its flavor and taste, it is quite close to that of the ginger family. In addition, this spice have antioxidant properties, turmeric has a calming effect on the digestive system and protects the stomach. 

6. Ginger (Adraka)

A King of spices, Ginger is as well known for its tangy flavor and for its warming action properties on the body. It helps in the digestion and also contributes to relax the muscles and to facilitate the breathing.

7. Muscade (Nutmeg)

This is a spice that can be accommodated in different dishes, sweet as well as salty. It helps to better digest and has antiseptic effects. It is found for example in the mixture of Kari powder.

8. Black pepper (Kali Mirch)

Black pepper is a spice that helps in cleaning the digestive system, black pepper facilitates the assimilation of nutrients by the body. It is also known to increase the effects of turmeric, which is why they are usually found in Kari (Curry).

9. Fenugreek (Methi)

Fenugreek activates metabolism, promotes digestion and helps to control blood sugar levels. It revitalizes the body by stimulating the activity of energy exchanges that take place uninterruptedly in the body.

It is also known to open the appetite while actively controlling blood sugar levels to a lesser extent cholesterol. Fenugreek or so called methi in hindi calms Vata and Kapha but may increase Pitta if taken at high doses.

III. List of Ayurvedic Herbal Mixtures 1. Trikatu

The 3 spices of Trikatu Churna are (Ginger, Black Pepper, Long Pepper) they activate the digestion and maintain to activate Agni (digestive fire) so that the food is transformed into a maximum of energy. Trikatu is particularly recommended for Kapha type people.

2. Trimada

The Trimada Churna helps in slimming, weight loss, besides this, it helps to regulate metabolism. This complex helps to reap the full benefits of ingested foods by promoting their absorption and proper transformation into energy and nutrients needed by the body. The Trimada is favorable for the three doshas.

3. Triphala

It activates and regulates intestinal transit. This is a complex of three fruits ( Amalaki, Bibhitaki, Haritaki) cleanses the intestine gently without damaging the intestinal lining.

Its action helps to lose weight through better elimination of toxins. Each of the three fruits present in the Triphala regulates the energy of one of the three doshas, eg Amalaki for Pitta, Haritaki for Vata and Bibhitaki for Kapha.

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Ayurvedic dietetics classifies foods according to their taste, energy and post-digestive action. Ayurvedic dietetics is a full-fledged component of Ayurveda, a traditional Indian medicine, just like yoga, herbal medicine, aromatherapy or Ayurvedic massage.

The term “Ayurveda” in Sanskrit means “knowledge of life or longevity”. It itself means much more than a health system, Ayurvedic medicine is a way of life in its own. It is rightly designed to better and maintain the health of all overall body and mind.

The Principle of Ayurvedic dietetics

In Ayurvedic medicine, each individual is categorized into three doshas, they must have a specific diet, adapted to his temperament, and aimed at correcting his imbalances.

The diet is determined differently according to the seasons of the year, the human being must know and understand his nutritional needs as per their ayurvedic body type.

While Western dietetics classify food by groups according to the model of the pyramid, Ayurvedic dietetics is based on the science of the six tastes. Each food and plant has a flavor (sweet, sour, salty, pungent, bitter and astringent), energy (warming or refreshing) and post-digesting action.

Ayurvedic dietetics also take into account the basic constitution of each person, its possible temporary imbalances and the state of its digestive capacity.

Why consult a dietician trained in Ayurveda?

According to Ayurvedic dietetics, the consumption of certain food products causes an imbalance of doshas (or biological humor). The three doshas (dosha vata, dosha pitta, dosha Kapha) are uniquely combined for each individual. Their imbalance causes the appearance of symptoms and diseases.

Concretely, Ayurvedic dietetics is mainly a preventive method to give the best nutrients to the body to keep it healthy. It is therefore recommended particularly in the context of chronic fatigue, decreased vitality or immune defenses.

Basic Principles Of An Ayurvedic Diet

Ayurvedic dietetics is based on its golden rules.

  • Take your main meal at lunch when the digestive capacity is at its highest level.
  • Vary your meals while avoid eating fruits with meals. It is best to consume fruits at least 30 minutes before or after the meal.
  • Do not consume leftovers beyond 24 to 36 hours after cooking. Also, avoid to consume them again with fresh products.
  • Give priority to foods that are hot or served at room temperature that favor the digestive process. Conversely, avoid cold, icy drinks, and foods coming directly from the refrigerator, as it can slow down this process of digestion.
  • Always eat positively in a quiet environment, chewing slowly to promote digestion.
  • Conversely, avoid eating under stress, anxiety or lack of appetite.
  • Wait between 3 to 6 hours, according to your constitution, before eating again. This practice will prevent overloads caused on your digestive system.
  • In Ayurvedic dietetics, it is always advisable to focuses on the type of food served on or off the plate while eating.
  • Give priority to organic foods and fresh ones, try to avoid possible residues of fertilizers or pesticides in food.
  • Remove “empty foods”, those are no longer of nutritional interest such as (white flour, refined products)
  • Reduce consumption of stimulants such as alcohol, tobacco, chocolate, coffee, tea, and soda.
  • Reduce animal protein such as red meat, high in saturated fat.
  • The Ayurvedic dietician also offers a course of supplements or preparations based on certain plants to relieve specific disorders.
Contraindications to Ayurvedic dietetics

Although ayurvedic medicine advocates a natural diet that is safe. But there are some contraindications, especially in case of allergies to foods, food supplements, plants (herbal medicine) or certain species (aromatherapy). In the case of pregnancy, seek the advice of your doctor.

Is it necessary to consult Ayurvedic dietetics?

Yes, it is necessary as Ayurvedic Dietetics are different for the individual. The two categories of professionals can provide Ayurvedic dietary consultation, either an Ayurveda practitioner or an Ayurvedic diet consultant.

If this is your first approach to Ayurvedic dietetics, it is advisable to make an appointment with an Ayurveda practitioner who will offer a consultation on a wider spectrum, to assess your entire fashion of life.

In this type of practitioner, the consultation begins with an Ayurvedic assessment to determine your natal constitution (the original combination of your doshas) and your state of imbalance.

The interview is conducted around observation, touch, and interrogation:

  • Examination of the pulse, tongue, eyes, skin, and nails.
  • Information about your lifestyle, the state of your digestion and your elimination (saddle, urine, sweat), your diet, your sleep, your mental and emotional functioning.
  • Taking into account your medical history.

At the end of the interview, the practitioner determines a diet adapted to your nutritional needs according to the dominance of your dosha (Vata for air, pitta for fire, kapha for water).

The frequency of sessions depends on the practitioner and the balance sheet. The goal is to integrate little by little the advice of the practitioner to make a smooth change in your lifestyle.

The assessment proposed by an Ayurvedic dietetic counselor is faster because it deals only with the problem of diet. The examination of the pulse, the eyes and the language is not systematic.

How to choose a dietitian?

Ayurvedic dietetics is not a recognized medical practice and taught as such in medical schools. However, most health educators in Ayurveda have additional training in dietetics or massage. As with Ayurvedic medicine in general, dietary advice does not replace medical treatment appropriate to a disease.

Some private institutes offer Ayurvedic degrees after one to four years of study. These courses are not officially recognized by the State, unlike in India there is Ayurvedic university education.

However, it is recommended to choose your practitioner in the directory of an association recognized as the association of professionals in Ayurveda.

Duration and price of an Ayurvedic dietetic session

A consultation in Ayurvedic dietetics lasts about an hour. It includes an analysis of three doshas and tips for a healthier lifestyle and a better diet. The average price is between 50 and 100 dollars, according to the region.

The best books on ayurvedic diet
  • “The Ayurvedic Diet”, Book by Reenita Malhotra a book to discover the benefits of Ayurvedic dietetics through advice and recipes.
  • “Ayurveda: The Science of Self-healing” a Practical Guide, Book by Vasant Lad, a book to discover your constitution according to Ayurvedic principles and adopt the best way of life to avoid the disease.
  • “Ayurvedic Cooking for Self-healing”, Book by Usha Lad and Vasant Lad, a book that gives information formulated using herbs and spices to help balance constitution of each person and gives treatment methods mainly through nutrition and herbal medicine.
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It is very unfortunate that foot massage is most forgotten or doesn’t care by many people as many are unaware of its benefits. A foot massage can be one of the best ways to detoxify the body. It is the best method as you did not have to cut off certain food or follow a strict diet plan.
Knowing the amazing benefits of foot massage for your health may make you want to practice this routine right from today. Research published in Nursing And Health Sciences in 2002 highlighted the good impacts of foot massage, noting that it can help to promote a healthy lifestyle for people at all ages and especially boosts relaxation, blood circulation, and people’s own healing ability.

I. Introduction – Foot Massage Before Bedtime

After a busy, long day of walking around and standing up, a relaxing foot massage is really great for us to enjoy. In addition to helping people relax, the foot massage has several therapeutic advantages for both mental and physical health.

Actually, health providers favor foot massage to increase the overall health of human beings. There are several types of research that support their advantages for human beings of all ages.

In an alternative medicine – reflexology – nice foot massage is an important component. Our feet have many nerve endings known as reflexes that connect to different organs and systems inside the body. The reflexes provide therapeutic influences as activated through massage.

To take a simple massage, we do not need to be a professional one or any help from one. We can do it ourselves, and the best time would be before our bedtime.

II. How To Give A Stress Relieving Foot Massage?

Not similar to several other parts of the body, you can give your feet a gentle massage with ease and without relying on any other.

You just need less than 30 minutes of your time to get the advantages of frequent foot massage routine. Here are some simple steps you will need to follow at home to give yourself a great foot massage:

  • Use warm water to fill in a large bowl and add two to five drops of any type of essential oils you like.
  • Soak your foot in the water within about ten to twenty minutes, and then use a soft towel to pat your feet dry.
  • After that, sit in a chair with comfort.
  • On the left knee, rest your right foot’s sole.
  • Use warm oil to apply onto the right foot. You can choose mustard, olive, or coconut oil.
  • While offering your foot a gentle massage, rub the oil around. Ensure that you will move the fingers along the bottom of the feet, back and forth.
  • While massaging the sole, concentrate on your toes. Squeeze, flex, and extend your toes to boost their flexibility.
  • Apply the same method with your rest foot.
III. Benefits Of Foot Massage Before Bedtime

In the article today, people will have the chance to learn about some of the best and most common benefits of foot massage before bedtime and how foot massage can do those favors for human beings over time.

1. Alleviate Low-Back Pain

People suffering from low-back pain need to massage their feet every day before going to bed. The massage therapy needs to be done with the thumbs pressing along the foot’s arch within about five minutes.

Low-back pain could make it hard to get a goodnight sound sleep. Once that pain is relieved thanks to foot massage, people can enjoy a pain-free and restful sleep.

Research published in the Nursing & Midwifery Research Iranian Journal in 2012 reported that foot reflexology is very useful for relieving the chronic back pain’s severity. It provides better results compared to massaging the lower back itself.

2. Fight Anxiety And Stress

Most of us might feel anxious or stressed for some times. A foot massage can aid in reducing anxiety & stress effectively. It can do more than just putting you in a relaxation mind stage.

Putting sufficient pressure to certain reflexes on your foot will promote relaxation and create a response to the nervous system. These responses might cause reduced anxiety and stress levels.

Particularly, the solar plexus reflex can help a lot in relieving stress. For locating this point, people should try squeezing the sides of the feet together. People will discover the point at this scrunched region’s center.

Published in BMC Nursing in 2012, the research found that foot massage can help to reduce anxiety, improve moods, and lower blood pressure levels in long-term staff who work with elderly suffering from dementia.

To treat everyday anxiety and stress, foot massage can serve as a useful and very simple daily remedy.

3. Promote Sound Sleep

At the end of the day, day-to-day challenge and pressure can keep your mind overly active, preventing you from having a safe and sound sleep. To encourage restful sleep and help your body unwind, it would be very helpful to have a short foot massage. Nevertheless, it is also ideal to have a full-body massage before your bedtime as well.

The entire process of massage can help to promote the free flow of energy and stimulate the reflexes along the meridians at the same time. This provides deep relaxation and can help us have sound sleep.

Research published in the Critical Care Nursing Iranian Journal in 2014 reported that foot massage can help to improve sleep quality in patients with heart disease, and it is highly suggested for increasing sleep quality in victims of ischemic heart disease.

4. Improve Blood Circulation

Circulation in our feet is usually impaired by uncomfortable and tight shoes that we wear throughout the day. In addition, the muscles in our feet hardly get any exercise, contributing to poor blood circulation.

For improving circulation to our lower extremities, one the best choices for us is to practice foot massage before bedtime.

A ten to twenty-minute foot massage before bedtime can greatly increase the blood circulation in our lower extremities. This is very crucial for people with diabetes, who are at greater risks of having peripheral neuropathy.

This issue may occur when the nerves and tissues in the extremities, like the feet and hands, do not get enough oxygen and nutrients because of poor blood circulation. This could cause burning sensations, tingling, and numbness.

Research published in the Archives of Physical Medicine & Rehabilitation in 2014 pointed out that foot massage can help to improve the vascular functions of those had not practiced daily exercises, meaning that massage has advantages for people regardless of their levels of physical activities.

Restricted blood flow could lead to kidney and heart issues, organ damage, varicose veins, and high blood pressure in the long term.

5. Prevent The Lower-Leg Edema

Lower-leg edema happens and can be triggered by an accumulation of legs’ fluids, which causes stiff, painful, and swollen legs. Poor blood circulation and pregnancy are some of the common popular trigger factors of edema.

Edema can make it painful, hard to move around, even lead to the disturbance of sleep.

While light exercises such as stretching, swimming, or walking can help a lot, practicing foot massage before bedtime would also offer fast relief from the signs and symptoms.

A 2010 study released in the International Journal of Nursing Practice shows that foot massage helps a lot in treating the edema in pregnant women.

6. Lower Blood Pressure

High blood pressure levels can lead to several severe related issues. A frequent foot massage can aid a lot in reducing our blood pressure levels, which in turn can reduce our risks of other health issues as well.

Research published in PLOS One in 2016 reported that self-administered aroma foot massage could greatly decrease the mean diastolic and systolic blood pressure. It could also reduce state anxiety levels and might tend to raise life scores’ mental health-related quality.

7. Reduce Foot And Other Chronic Pain

A proper foot massage can allow your feet to relax, soothe and stretch our muscles, as well as reduce swelling leading to pains.

Research published in the Clinical Practice’s Complementary Therapies in 2014 discovered that reflexology was very useful at relieving pain and inducing relaxation in those living with diseases such as chronic pain and whiplash injury.

Another research conducted by the Pain Management Nursing’s American Society in 2014 reported that foot massage in patients experiencing breast surgery was useful in postoperative pain control.

So we can see that there are tremendious benefits foot massage for health before bedtime to humans, reasearch are also astonishing.

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Ayurvedic or Ayurvedic medicine is one of the oldest known medical systems and has been practiced in India for more than 3,000 years or probably up to 5,000 years.

The term Ayurveda is composed of the Sanskrit terms Ayus, meaning “duration of life,” and Veda, whose meaning is “knowledge.” It is a system of traditional medicine that has also been practiced historically in Sri Lanka, and that has taken relevance in the Western world during the last decades.

There are 2 basic types of Ayurveda, the traditional and the Maharishi; the latter is based on translations of a Hindu religious guru known as Maharishi Mahesh Yogi, but in essence, both types have the same holistic approach. In India, the majority of the population uses Ayurvedic medicine exclusively or in combination with conventional western medicine treatments.

Ayurvedic Medicine has been practiced in India for more than 3,000 years or probably 5,000 years.

What is Ayurvedic Medicine?

Ayurveda medicine has a concept that promotes the health and well-being of a person through a delicate balance between mind, body, and spirit, and this is achieved through proper diet and basically a healthy lifestyle. Anything that affects one of these three produces an imbalance.

Ayurveda treatments are varied, but yoga, acupuncture, massage, Panchakarma (purification of the body with baths, essential oils, and other methods) and medicinal herbs are of vital importance.

All this keeps the individual free of disease. It is estimated that this type of medicine uses around 500-600 herbs. According to Ayurveda, each person is born with a vital force composed of the five elements, namely, Water, Air, Earth, Fire, and Space, which form in a certain proportion a unique balance together with the individual energy.

This balance of elements and energy is known as dosha. Each person has one of the 3 existing doshas with particular characteristics and is dominated by one or two of the elements. The individual constitution of people is called Prakriti.

1. Vata

This dosha controls functions related to movements, such as blood circulation and breathing. When they are in balance, Vata people are usually always on the move, they are animated and have a lot of energy and creativity, but they must rest to avoid an imbalance.

When an imbalance happens, they experience dryness in parts such as the mouth and skin, and anxiety and fear may occur. Ways to restore balance include rest, hydration and warm massages.

Dominant: Space and air. 2. Pitta

Dosha that controls metabolic processes such as digestion and body temperature. The Pitta people in balance are cheerful, high intellect, leaders and in general, a strong personality.

When they become unbalanced, they tend to feel agitated and angry; It is said that the fire begins to dominate over the water and then the skin can break, causing diseases such as heartburn and stomach ulcers.

Generally, these people are recommended to meditate, avoid stress and spend time outside at night and not the day, when the environment is cooler.

Dominant: Water and fire.

3. Kapha

It controls the growth of the body. Kapha people in balance express love, tranquility, reflection, strength, perseverance, and compassion; otherwise, they are stubborn and experience the feeling of being trapped.

To restore balance, Ayurvedic medicine recommends practicing exercise, drinking plenty of fluids, avoiding cold environments and inhaling warm aromas such as eucalyptus and cinnamon.

Dominant: Water and earth.

Practitioners of Ayurvedic medicine promote the integral well-being and treatment of diseases or ailments based on a person’s dosha, so there is no equal Ayurvedic treatment for two people.

They appreciate the patient as a small universe or a microcosm with forces that fill it: Agni, (spirit, fire), soma (love or harmony) and prana (breath, life). These interact with the four elements and flow through the chakras or energy centers.

However, even if a person is dominated by two elements, really they are all interconnected, so it is important to look for the total balance. Unlike conventional medicine, Ayurvedic medicine seeks to restore the balance of the doshas of the individual in the long term, and not find an instant cure for a bad body.

Many of the herbs used in Ayurvedic remedies are common trees in forests, such as cinchona ( Pterocarpus marsupium ) and myrobalan.

The plant is the wealth of the Indian subcontinent that has made it a highly exploited region, with species of great medical importance. For example, Indian snakeroot (Rauwolfia serpentina) is a shrub from which reserpine, a potent tranquilizer, is extracted, but overcollection has made it rare in the wild.

Ayurveda Medicine promotes the health and well-being of a person through a delicate balance between mind, body and spirit.

Important herbs in Ayurvedic Medicine
  • Gotu Kola (Centella asiatica)
  • Black pepper (Piper nigrum)
  • Sandalwood (Santalum album)
  • Cinnamon (Cinnamomum zeilanicum)
  • Shingli Mingli (Dioscorea deltoidea)
  • Cardamom (Elettaria cardamomum)
  • Lotus of India (Nelumbo nucifera)
  • Amalaki (Phyllanthus emblica)
Is Ayurveda Medicine safe?

There are lots of questions about whether ayurvedic medicine is safe? Ayurveda is practiced successfully in India for more than 3,000 years as traditional medicine and not much research has been made in the past. But these days many research is going on and found to be amazing.

Type 2 diabetes: According to the research published Gujarat Ayurved University, Jamnagar on 4-Aug-2015, in Efficacy of Ayurvedic remedies in type 2 diabetes it has been found that Ayurvedic therapies were found to be significantly effective and clinically safe as no adverse events of adverse drug reactions was reported during the treatment period.

Sodhana therapy: Another research published in Anc Sci Life. 2015 Apr-Jun on Śodhana therapy, an Ayurvedic process for detoxification and therapeutic activities in which poisonous medicinal plants are used. It has been found that as per the concept of Ayurveda, “even a strong poison can be converted to an excellent medicine if processed and administrated properly.

Dementia: A research published in Evid Based Complement Alternat Med. 2018, on the treatment of Dementia with ayurvedic medicine. It have been found that popular Ayurvedic medicinal plants such as Ashwagandha, Turmeric, Brahmi, Shankhpushpi, Guggulu and Gotu Kola, not only induce antistress and reduce brain aging but also boost memory enhancing effects. It help in regeneration of neural tissues, but also induce antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, antiamyloidogenic, nutritional, and immune-supportive effects in the human body.

Be careful with some remedies that use toxic metals or minerals, since they become harmful if they are used incorrectly or are applied by people who are not properly trained. In some countries, such as the United States, Ayurvedic products are legally regulated as dietary supplements.

If you are interested in Ayurvedic Medicine, take into account these considerations and look for more information, preferably from a doctor, before taking remedies.

Sources:

https://nccih.nih.gov/health/ayurveda/introduction.htm
http://umm.edu/health/medical/altmed/treatment/ayurveda
https://www.betterhealth.vic.gov.au/health/conditionsandtreatments/ayurveda
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ayurveda

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Getting a good massage is something really necessary for the physical mind as well as the spiritual mind. If you really want to feel good both from outside and inside there is nothing like approaching to Ayurveda.

The philosophy of Ayurveda is based on a holistic view of man, understood as a union of body and mind. The human being, during life, must be in complete harmony with the nature that surrounds him and, only then, will he be healthy.

What is Indian massage and what is it?

The Indian massage is also term as ayurvedic massage; it is a traditional massage form that originated in India. In it, essential oils are used following the guidelines of Ayurvedic medicine. In its origins, this type of massage had its ultimate purpose, the balance between the energies that flow between the body and the mind, commonly known as dosha.

According to Ayurveda principle, we are not all equal. We have different types of energies going through our body, so Ayurveda therapy focuses on finding the perfect type of massage depending on the characteristics of our body structure. Such as for example the type of skin, the sensitivity, etc.

How is Ayurveda massage carried out?

As we have already anticipated, Ayurvedic massage should be personalized according to the characteristics of the recipient to achieve maximum satisfaction. It is so that the benefits between the body and the mind are optimal. But how do we find out what kind of massage is best for each person?

The first step to discovering it would be to analyze several aspects related to skin type, metabolism, sleep or digestion among others. This analysis will be carried out by the ayurvedic doctor in charge of the session, through a short conversation with whoever will receive it.

According to Ayurveda in each of us there are three elements, which are known as the doshas:

  • Vata: ether plus air,
  • Pitta: fire plus water,
  • Kapa: water plus earth.

Thanks to this analysis, we can discover that doshas predominate in each body, or which are necessary to balance. Taking into consideration these 3 types of doshas, Vata, Pitta and Kapha, the ayurvedic doctor will use a different type of oil, pressure, and intensity.

In order to rebalance these elements and so that the prana, the vital energy, continues to purify and maintain the free channels, several Ayurvedic remedies are recommended among which we have for example the Yoga or also of courses of the massages. Ayurvedic massages are performed on the base of three main types.

3 Types of Massage
  1. Vata massage: This aims to rebalance the nervous system (Vata) through a total body massage during which tensions dissolve.
  2. Kapa massage: Consisting of an energetic and exhausting massage that balances Kapa disorders, such as adipose tissue.
  3. Pitta massage: If you have digestive problems or migraines, this massage is recommended that will lead you to deep relaxation.
How long does it take to massage?

The duration of the massage ranges between 45 – 60 minutes. It is recommended to have relaxing background music and diffusers with pleasant scents. In this way, a great evasion is achieved.

In addition to these, there are other types of Ayurvedic massages such as the Shirodhara, for example, which consists of 25 minutes of massage on the forehead and then a massage on the whole body; the Abhyangam which means to grease every part of the body; or the Shiro abhyanga that is the head massage.

4 Benefits of Indian massage

The benefits of opting from Ayurveda therapy are innumerable; it is both for the mind and the body. Below are some of the benefits of ayurvedic massage that you may want to discover. The most important ones can improve your day to day life.

1. It Reduces anxiety

The main reasons that cause anxiety are work stress along with our frantic pace of life. This anxiety can cause important imbalances in our body and mind, Ayurveda massage is a way to rebalance it.

For these cases, Ayurveda recommends, establishing fixed hours and opting a diet in which foods such as soups and stews predominate and avoiding caffeine, alcohol, etc.

The most recommended oils to achieve these purposes include sesame oil or Brahmi oil. They are the most recommended to relax the mind and combat muscle pain.

2. Improves the immune system

Our immune system plays a very important role in our lives. It affects our mood and health. In fact, problems with the digestive system are the main culprits of the weakening of our immune system.

Incorporating Ayurvedic massages into our routine can help to strengthen our immune system . Hot oils are often used for this process. These can be applied in the stomach, to alleviate digestive problems, or on the forehead, it can also help to relieve headaches and insomnia.

3. Eliminates toxins

Ayurveda massage is ideal if you are looking for the detoxification of the organism and the skin. On the one hand, the use of essential oils nourishes and detoxifies the skin, improving its appearance and texture. It can be an excellent beauty treatment.

In addition, it helps to eliminate toxins, because during the massage the lymphatic system is worked on, helping to accelerate its circulation.

4. Increase flexibility

Ayurveda massages can increase the flexibility of the body, while muscles will be much more relaxed and revitalized after each session. In addition, it can also improve the mobility of the joints

Contraindications of Ayurveda massage

As we have seen, the benefits of Ayurveda therapy are multiple and very beneficial. But it is advisable to inform yourself in advance to enjoy it in the best possible way.

If you suffer from any of the following diseases or are in any of these situations, it is very important to consult with the therapist before performing an Ayurvedic session.

  • If you have a fever.
  • If you have a contagious disease.
  • If you have thrombosis.
  • In the case of women, you are in the first months of pregnancy.
  • It is also not recommended if you suffer some type of skin injury. Since, when massaging the area, it could make it worse.

In addition, the therapist must be informed if any specific medication is being used, such as antidepressants. You have already seen, the benefits of an Ayurvedic massage far outweigh the contraindications. So, do not hesitate to put yourself in the hands of a specialist if you want to enjoy this centennial medicine, you will enjoy it!

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Kesar or Zafaran is known as Saffron in English. The threadlike part of Zafaran flower is used for many health and medicinal purposes.
Like vanilla and clove, saffron is one of the spices that many people keep in their kitchens and that they often use to flavor preparations, both sweet and salty dishes.

However, few people know the incredible properties that this spice possesses and the different uses attributed to it, beyond those that have been given to it in the culinary world, today in this article your will learned about saffron, what it is? Where it comes from, what are its benefits and properties, and many other things that you will like to know?

What and how is saffron?

Crocus Sativus is better known as saffron, it is a bulbous plant that measures between 6 and 10 cm high, and is characterized by having elongated leaves in the form of strips, about 3cm long, adorned by small hairs on the margins and a thin line, whitish and longitudinal along its surface.

This plant has beautiful violet flowers, with bright yellow or orange stigmas, which are what we know as seasoning or spice or Kesar, and also have medicinal properties.

Where did Saffron originally come from?

Now you know what and how saffron is, you’re probably asking yourself, where does it come from?

Well, this species finds its origins in the eastern Mediterranean, although some associate it with the Middle East and ancient Mesopotamia. Its arrival to Spain was propitiated by the Arabs and from there it was expanding until being known in the rest of Western Europe.

During the time of ancient Egypt, the pharaohs used to worship this spice, using it as a key ingredient to embalm the dead. On the other hand, the Persians used it to dye garments and to aromatize, while the Greeks used it to give a pleasant essence to their clothes and their salons.

As a curious fact, it is said that the cloak of King Henry VIII of England was dyed with saffron, like the mantles of many Buddhist monks.

Saffron and Its Various Properties

In case you did not know, saffron is not only spice with an incredible aroma and flavor, but also has extraordinary properties that promote our health, and also have a considerable amount of nutrients to provide the body.

To give you an idea, 100g of saffron provide 310Kcal, 65.37 g of carbohydrates, 11.43 g of protein, 3.90 g of fiber and 6 g of fat. In addition, this spice is an important source of vitamins of groups A, D, C, B1, B2, B3, B6 and B12, and minerals such as magnesium, iron, phosphorus, potassium, calcium, and zinc.

List of nutrients, minerals & vitamins in saffron
Nutrients and minerals per 100 grams
Calories or energy 310 kcal
Fat 6 g
Carbohydrates 65.37 g
Proteins 11.43 g
Iron 11.10 g
Calcium 111 g
Fiber 3.9 g
Match 252 g
Magnesium 264 g
Sodium 148 g
List of Vitamins in Saffron
Values per 100 grams
Vitamin C 80.8 mg
Vitamin B6 1,010 mg
Vitamin A, RAE 27 μg
Thiamin 0,115 mg
Riboflavin 0.267 mg
Folic acid 93 μg

Source: USDA

What is saffron used for?

Among the main properties that are attributed to this species, it can be used for the following:

  • Digestive: its bitter taste increases the salivary secretions, and its crocin content favors the production of bile, also preventing the formation of kidney stones.
  • Carminatives:  helps eliminate and prevent intestinal gas.
  • Antispasmodic:  helps to relieve cramps, contractures, and spasms.
  • Anti-inflammatory: serves to reduce inflammation, especially at the stomach level.
  • Antibacterial: this spice helps eliminate bacteria in the body, preventing possible diseases and infections.
  • Antioxidants: contains vitamin C that acts as an antioxidant, helping to fight free radicals that cause the aging of cells.
  • Analgesics: relieves pains of both head, menstrual and muscle.
  • Antidepressants: Saffron also helps by stabilizing the mood, reducing stress, anxiety, and depression.
  • Sedative: it is said that saffron helps to sleep, fighting insomnia.
Uses of Saffron Spice as Medicine

In addition to its culinary uses, saffron has served to relieve a large number of ailments in the body, this thanks to its multiple therapeutic properties.

In this way, this spice has been used in the treatment of stomach and menstrual pain, constipation, gas, abdominal inflammation, muscle pain, impotence, and insomnia, among other problems that diminish our quality of life.

Here are some effective remedies based on saffron to treat different conditions:

  • For impotence: it is recommended to boil 1L of water and add 0.5g of saffron stigmas, and drink this infusion twice a day.
  • For hair loss: mix licorice powder and a pinch of saffron in 1 glass of milk, and apply on the scalp at night.
  • For Alzheimer’s: 1 cup of water should be boiled with 1 teaspoon of ground ginger and 1 of saffron. Once I warm the infusion, drink it in the mornings.
  • For constipation: put 1g of saffron 4g of saffron, 30g of senna, 24g of ground rhubarb, 4g of cloves, for at least 6 days, and drink 5 tablespoons of liquid, 1 hour after dinner.
Other uses of saffron that you did not know

In addition the uses of saffron, this spice has other applications that you may not have known about.

  • Esoteric Uses: Believe it or not, saffron has important magical properties, so it is used as an amulet in different rituals that seek to attract love, promote sexual relations and even ward off bad energies.
  • For the clothes: This spice gives off a very particular dye that is used to dye clothes. Formerly, when couples got married, they had their clothes with saffron as a sign of union.
What benefits do we get from saffron?

There are many benefits we can receive from saffron, among them, we find the following:

  • It inhibits the proliferation of tumor cells, thanks to its crocin content.
  • It fights gingivitis and pain in the gums.
  • Improves digestion, eliminates gas and relieves constipation.
  • It can serve as a treatment for asthma.
  • Decreases menstrual pain.
  • Improves mood, fighting depression and anxiety.
  • It helps with blood circulation.
  • Reduces the risk of cardiovascular disease.
  • Help in cases of iron deficiency anemia.
  • Improves the appearance of the skin and benefits the eyesight.
Contraindications and side effects of saffron?

Although it is true that it is a very beneficial spice for health, there are some contraindications and side effects that have been linked to the saffron consumption, which must be taken into account, in order to avoid complications.

Thus, we find that saffron is contraindicated in the following cases:

  • Pregnancy, because it could stimulate the contractions of the uterus and cause abortions.
  • Metrorrhagia, because it could increase the bleeding.
  • Bipolar disorder, since it could produce excitability and worsen the symptoms in patients suffering from this disorder.
  • Medical treatment with anticoagulants, antidepressants or medications for hypertension.

It is proven that high doses of this spice can be toxic to the body, causing adverse effects, such as:

  • Mental uneasiness
  • Abortions
  • Headaches.

Dose: For this reason, it is recommended to consume no more than 1.5 g of saffron per day.

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Vata during the summer begins to accumulate. If Vata predominates in your constitution, you probably want to make sure that you do not overextend to the dryness of summer. So you have to concentrate on enjoying the heat while you relax and stay hydrated.
As a seasonal change, it is always necessary to change in daily routines. To consider the variations it is necessary that it is done in a natural way. One natural way is that we can introduce the Ayurvedic diet to maintain our body balance.

According to Ayurveda basic principle, if there is an excess of a particular substance in the body, the similar and the contrary forces serve to cure. It is mostly due to abuse in the food of the same type that causes unbalanced.

That is to say, in order to balance ourselves bodily, we must counteract the heat of the base itself, or at least, not increase it. In other words, you have to avoid too hot, spicy, acidic and salty foods to counter heat in the body.

The rise of temperatures in summer acts on our body by increasing the Pitta Dosha. People with a predominance of this dosha should be especially careful since an imbalance (by an increase) of it can lead to diarrhea, heartburn, sunburn, hot flashes, fatigue, acne and other types of skin rashes.

At the same time, the increase in temperature typical of the summer season can negatively affect our emotions. Anger and impatience increase in the summer and, according to some statistics, crimes and other violent crimes also increase.

Recommended foods for summer

As a rule, the body itself, which is wise, tends to demand the type of food that will make it feel better. In spite of this, we are going to give you four basic tips here so that you know how to take an adequate Ayurvedic diet for summer.

  • Enter a greater amount of sweet foods into your Ayurvedic diet for summer. When talking about sweet foods we are not referring to cakes and sweets. Basmati rice, bread, and ripe fruits could be good summer foods.
  • Introduce astringent and bitter foods into your diet.
  • Increase the intake of light dishes that have among their ingredients with pumpkin, courgette, cucumber, fresh asparagus, broccoli, cauliflower, salads, wheat, ghee, fresh cheese, olive or coconut oil, herbs and spices such as mint, cilantro, fennel, rosemary, turmeric or fresh ginger, cardamom, cinnamon and saffron.
  • Eat smaller portions and increase the number of times you eat a day. 5 or 6 times can be a good number as long as the ingested dishes are moderate each time.
  • Eat cold dishes like gazpacho.
Taboo foods in summer

When it comes to maintaining an adequate Ayurvedic diet for summer, we must know what foods we should eradicate from our diet or, at least, we should consume in smaller quantities. Among those foods we find the following:

  • Salty, acid and hot foods.
  • Eggplant, radishes, beet, and tomatoes.
  • Rye, corn, millet, and buckwheat.
  • Acidic and not ripe fruits.
  • Spicy spices (anise, chili, cloves or cumin).
  • Salt and vinegar.
  • Fried and fat.
  • Red meats.
  • Alcohol.
Ayurvedic drinks for summer

Another very important aspect to keep in mind that if we want to maintain an adequate Ayurvedic diet for summer it is necessary to know what we can drink and what not. The fact that is, in summer we transpire more which forces us to increase the number of liquids.

Of course, we must always keep in mind what drinks we drink and how we do it if we want to respect the principles of Ayurveda and, thus, balance our doshas and our organism.

Regarding the summer drinks of the Ayurvedic diet and beyond. It is always recommended healthy drinks, to drink water, we must know the following:

  • A refreshing drink from the fridge or with ice should not be consumed. Why? Because the excess of cold in the drink weakens the digestive fire. Although at first, you may feel freshness after that first sensation the body temperature increases.
  • Avoid drinks, like alcohol, black tea or coffee as it can aggravate Pitta, the dosha are most sensitive to the arrival of summer and the one that tends to become more unbalanced with it.
  • Consume mint and lemon infusions with a little sugar if you want to fight the heat.
  • Eat sweet lassi, lassi besides being a very refreshing drink, also serves to calm the gastrointestinal tract.
  • Consume herbal teas such as fennel, lemon balm, mint, liquorice or rose.

Many people who want to follow an Ayurvedic diet for summer wonder if fresh beer, so common in our culture and so present in our leisure time, has a place in our Ayurvedic diet for summer. The answer is yes (provided, logically, it is consumed in moderation).

Other Ayurvedic tips for summer

Ayurveda also provides another series of tips that should help us to make the summer dogmas more bearable. These tips are the following:

  • Do not expose yourself too long to sunlight.
  • Protect your head in some way (hat, hat, handkerchief …).
  • If you practice some kind of sporting activity, do it calmly and without overdoing it.
  • Do not exhaust yourself.
  • Among the most recommended physical activities for summer include swimming and walking outdoors.
  • Perform relaxation activities (yoga, meditation, breathing exercises, etc.) to reduce the tendency to excite or irritation due to heat.
  • Receive messages with coconut or sunflower oil.
  • Body massages will not only serve to refresh you but also hydrate skin.
  • Massage will also serve to highlight skin that has a tendency to suffer irritation, itching, etc.
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If there is an ideal Yoga position to relax the area of ​​the neck and prevent contractures occurring, it is the asana Matsyasana. It is also called “posture of the fish,” a position that, looks likes fish swimming.
It is a posture, that can open all the chest part, work to the mobility of our spine and help us to correct the position of the shoulders and neck thrown forward, which is common in our day to day life. The Health Benefits of Matsyasana (Fish Pose)
  • It allows stretching of the cervical and dorsal region of the spine.
  • The position of the fish, by allowing stretch, helps to combat kyphosis, it is the formation of an exaggerated curve in the upper part of the back.
  • It helps to eliminates blockages in the throat and neck area.
  • It enhances the chest facilitating a deep and yogic breathing.
  • It free lungs from all types of inhibition and acquire a greater capacity to fill with air.
  • It by acting positively on the lungs, the fish posture reliefs chronic bronchitis and asthma.
  • Strengthens the arms.
  • Stimulates the parasympathetic system, which allows relaxation.
  • Stimulates the heart chakra.
  • Stimulates and tones the pineal and pituitary glands.
  • Increases the capacity of resistance of the body.
How to do the Matsyasana posture?

To perform the posture of the fish you must follow the following steps:

  1. Lie on your back, put your legs and feet together and place your arms under your body, palms down, trying to join your elbows under you and as much as you can.
  2. Flex the elbows and push them towards the ground.The weight of your body should rest on your forearms.
  3. Elevate the chest until you acquire a position similar to that of being half-sitting.
  4. Drop the head back until the crown or top of the head reaches the ground and gently support it. When you do this, open your chest as much as you can without forgetting that the weight should fall on your elbows and forearms and never on your head.
  5. While you adopt the Matsyasana Yoga posture you should keep feet, legs and facial muscles as relaxed as possible. To achieve this, try to distribute the weight between the buttocks and the elbows and, taking advantage of the fact that the chest is wide open, try to breathe as deeply as possible.
How to get out of the fish’s posture

Once you have stayed for a time in this position and when you want to undo the position of the fish pose, you should follow the following steps:

  1. Lift your head slowly and slowly, exhale progressively, without haste and helping your hands, lower your back.
  2. Place the interlaced hands, behind the head, with the arms close to the ears.When you exhale, bring the chin to your chest and stretch and flex the neck slightly.When you inhale it, extend the neck so that your head rests on the ground.Turn your head from side to side, slowly, a couple of times.
  3. Separate legs and arms and adopt a position of absolute relaxation. Adopt such position, inhale in three times expanding your abdomen to the maximum.While your abdomen descends, exhale in three times.

The regular practice of fish posture can serve to regulate moods as well as nervous tensions and emotions. The Matsyasana therefore help us to achieve a better emotional balance and to direct more vital energy (prana) to the neck and shoulders.

Precautions while performing fish posture

However, there are some cases, in which extreme caution is required when performing the fish’s posture. People who have disorders of cervical vertebrae, for example, can adopt this position but without arching the trunk.

They will have to make a modification in the asana and, thus, they can substitute the act of supporting the head on the ground when throwing it back for supporting the back and the occiput.

Whoever has discomfort in the cervical vertebrae can also roll a blanket and place it in the area of ​​the spine, from the coccyx to the shoulder blades. By supporting the back on it, this asana can be performed more comfortably.

On the other hand, if you have discomfort in the lower back you can introduce a slight modification in the posture and perform it with crossed or flexed legs.

Pregnant women should avoid this fish posture, they can practice Matsya Kridasana, a variation of Matsyasana, it is aa flapping fish pose can serve as an excellent relaxation.

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Ayurveda believe that the 3 gunas (basic qualities of the universe) work together on a mental, physical and emotional level. Everything in this universe consists of (a combination of) these gunas, including your food.

Guna is a Sanskrit word that could be translated by something like “what binds,” it can also be defined as “String, thread, or strand,” or “quality, peculiarity, attribute, property” or “virtue, merit, excellence”. These 3 Guna qualities are present in all human beings, even though the percentages are different in each and in each case, are Sattva, Rajas and Tamas.

When we speak of Sattva, we are talking about intelligence, the main maker of balance. Rajas would be, on the other hand, the attribute related to energy, to change, to activity and turbulence.

This Guna is the maximum responsible for any type of imbalance. Finally, Tamas is the quality of substance, of darkness, of drowsiness. Tamas brings loss of perception and is in the end, to burden that prevents us from freeing ourselves from the most material.

The Three Gunas in Ayurveda Diet

The most important thing when maintaining a good state of health both physical and mental, first of all, it is necessary to promote, the Satuva Guna. For this, there is nothing like meditation and, of course good nutrition.

Both instruments, together with the practice of Yoga, will serve to calm the Guna Rajas and to eradicate the Guna Tamas. In this post, you will learn some basic several indications on the most suitable diets for each Guna.

It goes without saying that from the Tam as diet you have to flee like the Devil. What would be the point of maintaining a diet that would only serve to enhance in the most negative attributes of our nature.

1. Sattvic diet

The ideal Ayurvedic diet for good health, therefore it is fundamentally sattvic diet. Thanks to it as it would improve our mental energy, our good mood and as a rule, our balance.

The sattvic foods serve to provide lengthen life and health. This diet also serve to cleanse and purify our body, would therefore be the basis of a correct Ayurvedic diet.

The sathwic food should be natural and fresh, preferably organic food and should be taken from the most natural way, raw, boiled or steamed lightly cooked. Among the sattvic foods we can find the following:

1. The cereals will serve to provide our body with carbohydrates and amino acids that serve the body to synthesize proteins.

  • Cereals such as quinoa, oats, rice, millet, corn, etc.

2. When consuming dairy products you have to do it in moderation. An excess of dairy increases the production of mucus and hinders breathing.

3. When we talk about fruits we also talk about juices from them. The juices contribute to our body vitamins, minerals and fiber. In addition, they contain alkaline substances that serve to cleanse the blood.

  • Fruits and vegetables.

4. Sweeteners that are used in the sattvic diet should be natural sweeteners such as honey, molasses or maple syrup.

2. Rajastic diet

The rajastic diet, which pursues the union between mind, body and spirit, is especially indicated for people who perform a great physical exhaustion. Even so, it must be borne in mind that rajastic foods are bitter, sour, salty or too spicy foods.

The person endowed with a rajastic personality is a fundamentally very active and emotionally unstable person. Restless and passionate, the rajas person are a person often uncontrolled, a person who acts by impulses.

Among the rajastic foods  are garlic, onion, radish, coffee, tea and all the exciting. According to the principles of Ayurveda, rajastic foods foment anger, greed, violence, selfishness or lust. Of all the Guans, Rajas is ultimately responsible for disputes and wars.

3. Tamasic diet

The worst foods you can imagine for your health are precisely, Tamasic foods. The Tamasic diet makes the person a lazy person, devoid of motivation and tending to depression.

Giving up Tamasic foods is always a decision that should be made by anyone who decides to improve their way of life. Body, emotional and mental dullness is the main characteristic of the person who abuses Tamasic foods .

What foods are those? Meat and fish are for example. It also alcohol or the fruit that are unripe green or too ripe. Or fried food grilled or reheated many times.

And the dishes that are not at their point, that is, those that are too raw or too cooked. Tamasic foods are, for example, precooked dishes. And the canned food, the vinegar, the mushrooms, the refined foods, the Chocolate and the pasta of course.

As you see, there are many foods that we usually eat and that, if we wanted to maintain a healthy ayurvedic diet, we should eradicate from our pantry.

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