Is it just me or does everyone seem to be suffering hard this cold and flu season?
As the colder months come towards us at speed I have decided to share with you my top ayurvedic tips to staying on top of your health this winter.
What is Ayurveda?
Ayurveda is the ancient sister science to Yoga. Its a healthy lifestyle system that has been used for more than 5000 years. It promotes good health and prevention of illnesses through lifestyle practices such as meditation, yoga, massage, dietary changes an herbal remedies.
Ayurveda’s main pillar of health is to reduce toxins in the body. Toxins can be formed internally from incomplete processing of foods, caused by stress, overeating low digestion etc. And also absorbed externally through breathing, drinking and eating.
The Ayurveda collective name for all different types of toxins is Ama. Preventing a build up of Ama is crucial for good health and immunity.
When your digestive fire, called Agni, is low, digestion is poor. If this build up of Ama in the gut is not dealt with it can enter our circulatory system and transport around your entire body disrupting your biochemistry.
Ayurveda considers this build up of Ama to be a contributing factor to almost all diseases.
Healthy gut, healthy body and mind.
So what can we do to help?
Here is how I stay on top of my health in an easy and manageable way.
1. Eat warm foods
During the colder winter months our digestive systems are weaker. Try to avoid eating too much cold food during this season as it makes your digestive system work harder, potentially leading to stomach related issues and indigestion. Warm and easy to digest food is kinder on your body and helps you stay healthier.
2. Drink hot water
Now you will have head me talk about the positive effects of hot water if you have attended any of my courses or experiences.
It literally gives me life!
Drinking hot water throughout the day is the most effective Ama-removing approaches there is. As the hot water travels through your digestive tract it cleanses the digestive and elimination system dissolving Ama impurities.
Bonus, if you are unwell already, add ginger to your hot water and make ginger tea. It expels congestion, helps get rig of phlegm, reduces gas and bloating and supports good circulation. Throwing in a slice of lemon gives you that extra vitamin hit too.
3. Stretch and move the body
Gentle Yoga can really help you when you are feeling under the weather. And it doesn’t have to mean roll out your mat and throw yourself into a pretzel.
Some ground based stretches or sitting in a chair for upper body stretches can be enough to release the stagnant energy manifesting in the body. This can open up your chest to help your lungs fill with new fresh oxygen, relieve stiffness and stimulate the parasympathetic system.
Gentle mindful breaths are exactly what your body needs to clear congestion, enhance circulation and restore a balanced energy flow through the body.
Even if your nose is super stuffy, slowing down and taking a mindful breath can still work.
Takin in a deep, slow (so you don’t cough) breath for as long as you can (aim for 6-8 seconds) and then just as slowly and mindfully blow that breath away until all of the stale air in your lungs is released. Repeat this for 2 – 3 minutes, twice a day.
5. Salt water gargle
This is an Ayurvedic favourite and super effective.
Gargling with warm salt water loosens any mucus in the throat and cleans out bacteria and germs too.
Half a teaspoon of sea salt or Himalayan pink salt into a cup of cooled boiled water and gargle for a minimum of 30 seconds. Repeating twice a day while you are unwell and then once a day for a week after you are better.
This works best on an empty stomach and is not recommended for anyone on a sodium restricted diet.
Did you find this helpful?
Have I peaked your Ayurvedic interest?
I have a brand new signature health programme launching soon that will show you how to take your personal health to the next level with a complete and bespoke, overhaul, without the hard work!
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Love Laura x