Fall is upon us! If you are anything like me and love the freedom that summer brings, then the fall may bring sadness, and perhaps panic. Something like: “Holy crap! It’s back to routine. Lunches and dinners and schedules! Help!!!”
As a health coach, the first thing I recommend to my students (after a deep breath, of course) is a meal planner. Take a moment on the weekend to plan what you will eat in the week. Design your week of eating, make your grocery list, and put it up in your kitchen for easy reference.
The meal planning strategy is especially helpful for those who want to eat healthy, keep off the "emergency" junk food, and avoid late dinners and expensive take-out.
The summer season brings heat. Of the 5 elements (space, air, fire, water and earth), it is the element of fire that dominates this season. For those of you who have a healthy dose of fire or Pitta in your constitution, it is a time to be careful, because your internal fire is amplified by the heat of summer. The summer is also a time of weakness in the body. So pay attention to what your body is asking for and don't push it beyond its capacity. I often give up my intense weight training for cooler options like hiking and swimming.
Think cool. Think alkaline. Think gentle.
Yes, I know... life is full! If your life is anything like mine, then the appropriate word may be
"relentless". There is work, and children, and making lunches and dinners, and deadlines, and uninvited sickness, and did I even mention sleep??
So if you feel like you need a cleanse, but the idea of a detox this spring is unfathomable, then try these 4 steps to give your body some basic support. They may sound simple, but they will go a long way in helping your body release and reset. You should be able to add them into your regular day without too much restructuring.
My family has recently gotten into granola in a big way. Its a nice, hearty breakfast for those days when we need something snappy.
From the Ayurvedic perspective it is a bit dry for some people (such as myself) whose bodies predominate in cold and dry energies, and so I eat mine in warm almond milk to make it more nourishing for my system.
I started making my own granola when I once tried to buy it, and was appalled at the price- at least for the balanced, clean kind that I wanted. Over the last year I have been playing with it a bunch, and this is where it has settled.
The wintertime is a time for indulgence: rich and decadent food, extra sleep, celebrations with drink and such like, and often a more sedentary lifestyle. The body is amazing in the fact that it will endure all that and stay as balanced as possible.
In the spring, however, as the weather warms, and the ice in the mountains starts melting into gushing streams, our body also starts to release the heaviness that has accumulated in our tissues from the winter. Impurities within the tissues melt into streams and flood into the micro channels inside us.
Today I would like to tell you about one of my most favourite Ayurveda tricks. Cleaning and examining the tongue!
Did you know that your tongue can tell you all about whats going on inside your body? Have you considered how you might best take care of this essential sense organ, and window into your internal system?
Growing up in India meant being out everyday in intense sun, eating grass-fed meat, and living the relatively relaxed life of a child. I realize now how it must have been fantastic for my Vitamin D levels as all three of those things are important contributors to our Vitamin D stocks.
Then I moved to the Pacific Northwest. I also slowly turned vegetarian.
In my last post I went into great detail about the value of synchronizing our lifestyle to nature's rhythms on a daily basis. We talked about how each section of the day is governed by a certain energy and how we can benefit from using those times/energies for specific activities. I would like to finish that idea with these two thoughts:
- what an ideal daily routine would look like (adapted to today's world, a bit)
- why Ayurveda believes routine to be one of the most effective tools in preserving health
Here is an ideal Ayurvedic daily routine:
Nourishing food, proper rest and regular exercise are commonly recognized health principles. We all agree, and do our best to abide by them. What I found unique to Ayurveda is the strong emphasis on a daily routine based on the changing energetic qualities of the day.
So in this post, I would like to explain how three overarching energetic principles in nature act on us in a daily, 24-hour cycle of work, rest and nourishment.
Most people associate massage with a masseuse or a spa. In other words, someone else massaging us. We all know how good it feels, but alas, it is that rare luxury only possible when time and budget allow. This is where Ayurveda shines brightly with a simple solution- just massage yourself! It one of the least known tools for maintaining health, and possibly one of the most effective ones.