I know the word Ayurveda is intimidating at first glance. But, Ayurvedic wisdom is something the entire family can understand, embrace and enjoy. By adding a few daily rituals into your usual mix you can start preventing sickness and disease today and stay healthy throughout the Fall.
Let's kick this party off by getting doing a little meet and greet with Ayurveda.
The word, Ayurveda, translates to 'the science of life'. It's a holistic science over 5,000 years old that contains a profound body of knowledge used to understand ourselves within the laws of nature.
According to Ayurveda, each individual and all of nature is made up of a certain combination of the five fundamental elements: Space, Air, Fire, Water and Earth. These elements uniquely design each one of us, creating a distinct blueprint known as our Dosha.
There are 3 main Doshas: Vata, Pitta and Kapha. You can take a simple quiz or consult an ayurvedic practitioner to unveil your Dosha.
How Ayurveda Can Help You Stay Vibrantly Healthy this Fall
As much as we love Summertime and being out with our friends, going to parties and all the other outward flowing energy activities, Fall has moved in. It brings with it the promise of rain and cooler temperatures. Its rhythms remind us that it's time to turn inside, ruminate and nourish that inner light.
When we can line up to naturally occurring rhythms, we're less likely to get sick and develop disease.
Here are 5 simple and effective practices that can help you and your family line up to Fall's rhythms:
1. Drink warm water with lemon first thing in the morning. The acidic qualities of lemon encourage regularity, which is crucial in keeping your digestive track free of toxic build-up. Ayurveda likes to keep things moving through the channels of the body. Lemons also hold vitamins and minerals that help release toxins in the digestive tract. Squeeze the juice of 1/2 a lemon into a cup of warm water.
2. Scrape your tongue. If you've never taken a peek at your tongue in the morning, check it out! Ayurveda teaches us that we can learn a lot about what's going on in our bodies by simply noticing the characteristics of our tongue. In fact, it can inform us on how we want to start our day. A body with healthy organs and a clear digestive tract will show up pretty pink. A body with clogged organs or undigested food from the night before will show up with a layer of fuzz, film, the quivers, indentations from teeth, and/ or bumps (other than your taste buds). If your tongue has any of the latter qualities you know that there are toxins lingering in your body. To clear them out you can try drinking detoxifying juice, opt into a full on cleanse, or consult an Ayurvedic practitioner for an individualized plan. But first you want to scrape off these toxins from your tongue so you don't re-ingest them into your system. Use a tongue scraper or the edge of a stainless steel spoon. You can find the tongue scrapers at most health food stores or online. Stainless steel ones are great because they don't rust. Scrape the tongue gently, working from back to front. It will usually take between seven and 14 strokes to get it clean and clear (be sure not to scrape it raw though!).
3. Treat yourself to a green smoothie for breakfast. There a many different recipes for green smoothies out there, but Ayurveda encourages a seasonal diet and ingredients that balance out the qualities already occurring in nature. Since it's fall, nature brings out the dry, rough, light, cold, subtle & mobile qualities of life. This means for optimal health we want to steer away from foods and activities that have these same qualities (the idea is that too much of a good thing leads to sickness and disease).
Here's a green smoothie recipe to balance you out in the fall: