Here are five Ayurvedic ways of life to aid overall wellbeing for everyone.
The ancient holistic practices of Ayurveda revolve around the person as a whole entity and maintaining the balance of that existence through the body, mind and consciousness. We are all unique and this should be celebrated as it is within an Ayurvedic lifestyle, we must tap in to our own personal homeostasis and work towards keeping our constitution consistent.
Ayurveda focusses on three functional principles, or energies, that exist within every living thing; vata – the energy of movement, pitta – the energy of digestion and metabolism, and kapha – the energy of our bodily structure. These three energies must be kept balanced in order to maintain our cellular function. So, how to incorporate simple Ayurvedic practices into our daily lives to help us achieve this? Simple, try some of the following and see if they work for you…
Keep the peace
Stress and anxiety often bog us down and block us from achieving our balanced selves, and are not easily avoided in today’s fast-paced, work orientated society and culture. Meditation is an excellent method of keeping one’s mind, body and spirit in the present. To allow ourselves to just be, to remove outside stress and live in the moment. Perhaps your method is to take a walk alone, go for a run, take bath, call a friend, practice yoga, whatever works for you to relieve that stress and re-centre yourself. Taking a ‘me’ moment aids us to disconnect from the goings on of the world around us, the hectic life that surrounds us and allows us to find our grounding once again.
Get some rest
Regulate your sleeping patterns as much as possible. Aim for eight hours uninterrupted sleep per night to achieve optimum health and balance. Ayurveda suggests that getting up early, watching the sun rise and feeling the rays on your skin can aid your state of mind, health and positivity. Perhaps take regular midday/afternoon naps to increase your sleep hours per day.
A spoon full of sugar
Well, not sugar but some unprocessed, organic honey first thing in the morning has fantastic anti-bacterial properties and helps to flush unwanted toxins from the body. Ayurveda followers will take theirs with a pinch of salt to aid a long healthy life.
Lap it up
Ayurvedic medicine, which focusses strongly on the digestive system, recommends that to keep your system flowing freely and effectively you should sip water throughout the day to stay hydrated and fully functional. Herbal teas also function to hydrate us as well as provide nutrients and vitamins that we may be lacking.
Schedule a daily walk, alone or with company – this is considered a vital routine in Ayurveda, especially after eating, to promote mental, physical, and emotional health, without putting too much pressure on the body. It calms the mind, nourishes the senses and balances each of the three energies or ‘doshas’ effectively.
Keep it real
Ensure your diet is clean and green. Food in the Ayurvedic tradition would be made fresh, from scratch, and contain plenty of herbs and spices. In our western world diet ranges from good to bad to ugly and we need to keep check on what we are ingesting as much as anything else in our life. So, the best method to incorporate Ayurvedic ways is to keep food ingredients fresh, whole, and avoid anything processed or preserved in some way. Their belief is that such foods are harmful and block nature’s instinctual intelligence that exists within its produce from reaching and nourishing us. And don’t skip breakfast!
Not only do Ayurvedic beliefs focus on the internal workings of the body, they also lean towards nourishing the body from the outside in the form of massage. Warm herbal oils massaged into the skin are believed to have exceptional healing benefits, as well as hydrating us. Another tradition is to practice Indian head massages, where oils are massaged into the scalp and hair to promote healthy hair growth and shining locks. Make sure that the oils you use are fitting with your skin type, 100% organic essential oils.
None of the above are particularly difficult for any of us to adhere to, many you may be practicing already. The point of it is that we look at our health as a whole, that if one thing goes off kilter this can have knock on effects throughout the body and mind. Keeping our body, mind and consciousness in balance is the ultimate goal and the above are just a few pointers as to how to keep that under control.
If you look deeper into the Ayurvedic traditions you will note that herbs and spices play a deep role in the fundamentals of their wellness belief system. Adding healing energy through the power of turmeric, cumin, coriander, fennel, cardamom, to our diet can aid in a plethora of health benefits; support digestion, cleanse the system, settle the stomach, reduce inflammation, and more. The bottom line is that Ayurvedics have been living well, healthy and into their later years with far less complaints than those in the west and so their ancient traditions speak for themselves!
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