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Ayurveda

Nutritional and Ayurvedic Treatment for Malabsorption

Malabsorption is faulty absorption of fat, protein, sugar (natural forms) and/or vitamins. Malabsorption occurs when there is a fault in absorbing nutrients through food from the gastrointestinal tract (GI tract). There is a difficulty in both digestion and absorption of the nutrients. Malabsorption typically impacts growth, development, weight loss or other health conditions. Typically, significant loss of fat-soluble vitamins is seen in malabsorption.

What causes Malabsorption

  1. Poor diet/malnutrition
  2. Low stomach acid
  3. Excessive stomach acid/Zollinger-Ellison syndrome
  4. Deficiency in enzyme production
  5. Food allergies & intolerances – usually protein in a food
  6. Autoimmune conditions
  7. Damage to the intestine – injury, infection, inflammation
  8. Stomach flu
  9. Prolonged use for antibiotics (creates imbalance in the healthy gut flora)
  10. Certain drugs such as, laxatives, mineral oils, tetracycline, colchicine, or cholestyramine, which may lead to harm the intestinal lining.
  11. Congenital
  12. Radiation and chemotherapy
  13. Alcohol abuse
  14. Excessive smoking
  15. Intestinal Surgery
  16. Stress
  17. Insomnia
  18. Excessive exercise

Signs and Symptoms of Malabsorption

  1. Sudden and/or unintentional weight loss despite eating a balanced diet
  2. Lethargy or fatigue
  3. Lack of focus, poor memory, and lack of mental clarify
  4. Digestive challenges include, diarrhea or constipation, bulky-fatty-mucus stools (that sticks to the toilet), excessive gas, bloating, abdominal distension, nausea-vomiting and cramping in the abdominal area.
  5. Growth failure in children

Common diseases linked to Malabsorption

Lactose intolerance (lack of lactase enzyme in the body), Celiac disease, Colitis, Crohn’s disease, SIBO, Cystic Fibrosis, Chronic pancreatitis, liver disease, Whipple’s disease are often seen to be a reason for malabsorption.

There are also rare conditions such as, Schwachman-Diamond syndrome (a genetic disease affecting the pancreas and bone marrow), short bowel syndrome, and Biliary atresia (a blockage in the tubes (ducts) that carry bile from the liver to the gallbladder) that can cause malabsorption. infectious diseases, parasites and toxins in food can also cause malabsorption.

Types of Malabsorption and their Impact on Health:

Fat Malabsorption:

When fats from food is not absorbed properly it passes through the small intestine to colon causing fatty, foul smelling, mucus high stools (steatorrhea). This will lead to malabsorption of fat-soluble vitamins such as, Vitamin A, D, E and K. All symptoms of deficiencies of these vitamins will show up such as, dry skin or skin lesions, frequent infections, and growth delays in children.

Fat malabsorption can also result from a lack of bile from diseases of the gallbladder, surgical gallbladder removal, bile ducts or liver.

Protein Malabsorption:

Protein Malabsorption will cause dry hair, hair loss, edema/fluid retention, muscle wasting, muscle loss, poor strength and increase in injury risks.

Carbohydrate-Sugar Malabsorption:

Lack of enzymes such as, lactase can cause milk intolerance. Lack of healthy gut flora (probiotics) can also lead to malabsorption of carbohydrate. In people with fructose malabsorption, the cells of the intestine cannot absorb fructose normally, leading to bloating, diarrhea or constipation, flatulence, and stomach pain.

Bile Salt Malabsorption (BAM):

Bile is a liquid substance that the liver produces to aid in food (fat) digestion. The body usually releases bile at the correct amount based on the food is ingested. However, sometimes the body may produce excessive bile which then goes to the small intestine and then passing on to the colon. This results in watery bowel movements, urgency etc. which many may lead to incontinence.  

Vitamin and Mineral Malabsorption:

Fat soluble vitamin deficiency can be due to fat malabsorption. This will lead to night blindness (vitamin A deficiency), weak bones and bone pain (vitamin D deficiency), Bleeding gums and nosebleeds (vitamin K deficiency) and paleness, weakness and dizziness (vitamin deficiency anemia).

Calcium, magnesium, and iron malabsorption can be a result of low stomach acid and medication.

B12 Malabsorption:

Diphyllobothrium latum infestation and Juvenile pernicious anemia can cause B12 malabsorption. Sore, red tongue is a sign of vitamin B12 deficiency.

Protocol for Healing Malabsorption:

For individual protocol you can book me for a consultation. I can design step by step custom plan according to your age, health and life condition to repair your malabsorption.

Ayurvedic Steps to Manage Malabsorption

A protocol to heal malabsorption needs to be maintained for 6 weeks.

DIET

  1. Improve “Agni” by eating ginger tea or ginger capsules. Or add apple cider vinegar in water first thing in the morning.
  2. Meal plan to eat foods rich in fiber, vitamins-minerals, and healthy fats. Remove inflammatory foods.
  3. Do not combine incompatible foods. Check my ebook Eat Right for your Body Type.
  4. Remove liquids such as caffeine, alcohol, juices and high sugar fruits and starchy vegetables.
  5. Remove toxic foods – hydrogenated oil, pop, cookies, baked goods, fried foods, sweets, packaged foods that contain harmful preservative, artificial sweetener, color etc.
  6. Remove Dairy products to reduce mucus.
  7. Add probiotic rich foods or supplements (speak with an Herbalist or Nutritionist for the right supplement).
  8. Add good fats such as, flax oil, evening primrose oil, nuts, seeds and avocado in the diet.
  9. Add hingvastak churna in your diet. See recipe on my blog,
  10. For weakness, fatigue and/or lethargy add Triphala in the diet.
  11. For parasites or infections add Trikatu in the diet.
  12. Reduce amounts of grains and increase fiber rich carbohydrate.

LISESTYLE:

  1. Eat meals in regular hours.
  2. Have 3 main meals without any snacking.
  3. Drink herbal tea that increases absorption. Such as, cumin, fennel, chamomile and peppermint.
  4. Power walk for 15-20 minutes a day.
  5. Pranayama or breathing exercise helps to improve digestion and reduce anxiety.
  6. Drink warm water in between meals, instead of cold water.
  7. Prefer bitter, sour and pungent tasting foods avoid sweet, salt and astringent until gut repair is complete.

 

If you have been diagnosed with IBS, IBD, Celiac, SIBO or Crohn’s disease it would be recommended to seek professional help who can prepare an individualized diet chart and supplement chart for you that includes herbs and protein to reduce malabsorption.

Please share you own experience with us. Have you experienced any of the symptoms mentioned above?

Reference:

  1. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/6416733/#:~:text=Dietary%20therapy%20includes%20a%20high,and%20probably%20should%20be%20prescribed.
  2. https://www.webmd.com/digestive-disorders/what-is-bile-acid-malabsorption

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Kalmegh – Green Chirayta – King of Bitter Herb in Ayurvedic Medicine

In my journey as an Ayurvedic practitioner and then as an Herbalist, Andrographis came up many times as one of the strongest bitters. In 2019, when I was in Dhaka, Bangladesh – there was an outbreak of Dengue fever. I ensured I had Andrographis with me. In Bangladesh, Andrographis is known as Kalmegh or the Black Cloud. Local vendors also call it Green Chirata. It is widely used in Ayurveda, TCM and Thai herbal medicine.

Kalmegh – Green Chirayta – King of Bitter Herb in Ayurvedic Medicine

Since Andrographis is a very powerful herb, therefore, it is utmost important to speak with your ND or Herbalist before taking the herb, especially if you are taking any medication.

I thought I share the Ayurvedic Profile and the benefits of Andrographis in this month’s blog.

Profile of Herb

Botanical Name: Andrographis Paniculata

Ayurvedic Name: Bhunimba (Neem of the Earth)

English: The Creat

Bangla: Kalmegh (Black Cloud)

Dosha’s: PK-, V+

Taste (Rasa): Bitter

Qualities (Guna): Dry, light

Potency (Virya): Cooling

Post Digestion (Vipaka): Pungent

Tissues (Dhatu): Plasma, Blood, Muscle and Fat

Systems: Digestive and circulatory

Parts Used: Leaf and Root. Herbalists can use the whole plant to make infusion or tincture.

Preparation: tea/infusion, decoction, tincture, fresh leaf juice, dried powder in capsule or tablets.

Dosage: for adults, make tea with 2-3 grams of dried leaf or a few fresh leaves to make 15-30 ml tea. However, therapeutic dosages must be taken after discussed with a Herbalist. Dosage for capsules should be on the bottle. Fresh leaf juice 5-10 ml in enough per day.

Medicine System: Andrographis is widely used in Ayurveda and TCM (Traditional Chinese Medicine). It is also used in Thailand, Sri Lanka and Malaysian medicine.

Caution: Cannot be used during pregnancy and lactation. In excess Andrographis can cause anorexia, emesis and digestive discomfort.

Constituents: Andrographolide, diterpenoid lactone

Actions: Alterative, anti-bacterial, anticancer, anthelmintic, anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, anti-periodic, antipyretic, anti viral, bitter, cardiac tonic, cholagogue, diuretic, depurative, expectorant, febrifuge, hepatoprotective, immune-stimulant, stomachic and soporific.

Contraindication: Do not take Andrographis if you are on chemotherapy drugs, blood pressure lowering drugs, anticoagulant and antiplatelet drugs. Studies also has shown adverse effect if taken with Aminophylline/Bronchodilators, CYP450 and UGT 2B7 substrate drugs.

 

Benefits of Kalmegh or Andrographis

Immune System: A powerful immunostimulant herb that is used individually or in formulas, to protect from viral and bacterial conditions. It enhances the production of white blood cells, specifically NK cells and T helper cells. Its anti-pyretic and anti viral properties make it useful in malaria or any kind of fever. The herb has been studied for its impact on HIV and cancer. Other diseases Andrographis is used in are, mouth ulcers, herpes zoster etc.

Respiratory System: Andrographis is commonly used in traditional medicine for cold, influenza and upper respiratory infections such as flu, bronchitis. It is a common remedy for headaches cause by cold and flu, tonsil inflammation etc. Depending on the condition, Andrographis, either by itself or in combination with other herbs, can reduce duration and severity and recovery tine for cold, flu and fever. Symptoms such as, coughing, sinus congestion, runny nose, sore throat, high fever has shown to improve when given Andrographis. A compound in Andrographis called, andrographolide may help protect lungs from damage during infection. Andrographolide is known for its anti viral actions. It inhibits some aspects of viral replication and the virus’s ability to use their protein to enter human cells.

Liver & Spleen Protective: In Ayurvedic Medicine, Andrographis is used to eliminate “Ama” or “Toxins”. This King of Bitters improves liver functions, increases bile flow and used in many liver and spleen related conditions such as, fatty liver, jaundice. As a cholagogue it stimulates bile flow and relieves constipation that is due to liver/gallbladder stagnation.

Skin Health: Andrographis can purify blood and improve liver function which leads to better skin health. Andrographis has been used In Herbal Medicine or Ayurveda for treating acne, eczema, psoriasis and vitiligo.

Digestive Health: In Ayurveda the concept of “agni” is extremely important and known to be the gatekeeper of health and vitality. The “Jathara-Agni” is the controller of the digestion and assimilation of food. Andrographis impacts the Jathar Agni by stimulating appetite, relieving flatulence, bloating and by alleviating “Ama” that cause IBS or IBD. Kalmegh also is used in dysentery, ulcerative colitis etc. Andrographis can expel parasites and worms that cause digestive havoc in the body. Since Kalmegh is known to improve fat metabolism (impact Meda Dhatu) as it assists with eliminating excess weight in Kapha’s. In TCM Andrographis is used to treat “leaky gut” syndrome, which if not healed on time, may cause stress on the immune system.

Lymphatic & Urinary System: Andrographis is also known to reduce lymphatic congestion, edema and have a positive impact on the Mutra Vaha Srota (Urinary Tract System).

Reproductive Health: Depending on dosage and duration it has been studied as a male birth control herb.

Hormonal Health: As a bitter tonic, kalmegh has great influence on the pancreas and insulin. Therefore, it has a positive impact on people with diabetes.

Inflammatory Disease: Andrographis improves the anti-inflammatory response. This herb is used for ulcerative colitis and arthritis.

Bone and Joint Health: Andrographis promotes joint health by reducing swelling and pain in the joints and prevents cartilage damage. It also reduces joint stiffness, joint flexibility, and weakness.

In fold medicine, Andrographis was also used as an antidote for snake bite.

 

Andrographis combined with Melatonin:

A combined treatment with melatonin and andrographis promotes autophagy and anticancer activity in colorectal cancer. 

Although Andrographis is a wonderful herb, its best to use it as per the recommendation that comes from your ND or Herbalist. When you drink as tea or tincture, swish around your month and then swallow.

If you have had an personal experience or success story with Andrographis please share with us in the comment section.

If you have any questions with regards to Andrographis you can also write us on the comment section.

 

Reference:

  1. https://ca.iherb.com/blog/andrographis/1496
  2. Singh Khalsa, Karta Purkh and Tierra, Michael, The Way of Ayurvedic Herbs, Aug 14, 2018
  3. Dass, Vishu, Ayurvedic Herbology. Lotus Press. 2013
  4. Pole, Sebastian, Ayurvedic Medicine. Singing Dragon
  5. Elliotsone, Susan, Advanced Herbal Medicine, Course Materials.
  6. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/35089340/#:~:text=in%20colorectal%20cancer-,A%20combined%20treatment%20with%20melatonin%20and%20andrographis%20promotes%20autophagy%20and,Carcinogenesis.

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Best Ayurvedic Remedies and Practices for Hypothyroidism

Hypothyroidism:

In these days in the United States Hypothyroidism is the most common endocrine illness. About 20 millions of people are facing thyroid disorder in America.

But what exactly is hypothyroidism, and how can it be treated?

In Hypothyroidism the thyroid gland may not produce the enough hormones. This leads to fatigue, weight gain, dry skin and hair, constipation, depression and lethargy.

Hypothyroidism is most common in women after menopause or in older people who have lost their natural source of thyroid hormone. In some cases, it can be caused by an autoimmune disorder or cancerous tumors growing on the gland itself.

Main Cause of Hypothyroidism:

The exact cause of hypothyroidism isn’t known yet, but it may be caused by a genetic predisposition or other factors like stress or diet.

According to Ayurveda, Hypothyroidism can be caused by several factors like excessive heat in the body, toxic metals like lead or mercury in the body etc.

Symptoms of Hypothyroidism:

  • Ø  Exhaustion or lack of energy
  • Ø  Gaining weight or difficulty in losing weight
  • Ø  Muscle weakness or lack of coordination
  • Ø  Dry skin, brittle hair and brittle nails
  • Ø  Difficulty concentrating and remembering thing
  • Ø  Depression or anxiety

Can Hypothyroidism be cured by Ayurveda?

Yes, it is somehow possible to treat Hypothyroidism with ayurvedic medicines and practices. There are many natural remedies for hypothyroidism and they have been used in India for centuries. These remedies help to increase the functioning of the thyroid gland and improve its health condition. Some of these natural remedies are mentioned below:

Ayurvedic Remedies for Hypothyroidism:

Here are few of the best Ayurvedic Remedies for Hypothyroidism

  1. Ø  Get some vitamin D: Many Ayurvedic practitioners recommend getting some vitamin D along with your treatment for hypothyroidism. Vitamin D is considered vigorous for appropriate functioning of the thyroid gland. It can get naturally by exposing skin to sunlight on an empty stomach. But, if you are living in northern climate, it might be hard to get an adequate amount of sunlight during winter. In this case, you can take a supplement or eat fortified foods such as milk and cereal that have been fortified with vitamin D.
  2. Ø  Eat cooked greens: It’s important that you eat cooked greens on a daily basis while following an Ayurvedic treatment plan for hypothyroidism. Cooked greens contain high amounts of minerals including vitamins A and C, folate, iron and calcium which can help in correcting this disease. They also contain trace minerals like selenium, zinc and magnesium.
  3. Ø  Panchakarma: Panchakarma is one of the most popular Ayurvedic treatments for hypothyroidism because it helps cleanse your system from all toxins that affect your thyroid gland and metabolism and improve digestion by increasing its efficiency and supply more energy to working muscles. It also helps in improving blood circulation around the body so that more oxygen gets into the cells and nutrients get absorbed easily by them. This treatment is considered as one of the best alternatives to surgery if your condition doesn’t improve after trying other treatments.
  4. Ø  Apple Cider Vinegar: Apple cider vinegar is a great natural medicine for the treatment of hypothyroidism. It has anti-oxidant properties that help in fighting free radicals, which are the main cause of damage to cells and tissues in your body. It helps in reinforcement the immune system, refining digestion, and detoxifying the body. Apple cider vinegar can be taken as a supplement or can be drink with the meals.
  5. Ø  Tulsi: This is a good herb for people to use. It is also called the Holy Basil and has been used for centuries in different parts of the world especially in India. Tulsi is commonly used in Ayurvedic medicine to treat various symptoms such as hypothyroidism, low libido and high cholesterol levels. It contains a lot of antioxidants which help in improving your immune system and also helps in removing toxins from your body. This herb can be taken as supplement in capsule form or you can make Tulsi tea at home.
  6. Ø  Kanchnar Guggulu: It has the potential of antiviral, antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties which makes it really effect for Hypothyroidism. It is an amazing ayurvedic formulation that helps greatly in maintaining the secretion of thyroid hormones.
  7. Ø  Iodized Salt: Our body uses iodine to make thyroid hormones. That’s why an iodine deficiency can cause hypothyroidism. But, fortunately, deficiency is easy to prevent. Just add a dash of iodized salt to your main means and that should help you meet your requirements.

Ayurvedic Practices for Hypothyroidism:

Here are few of the best Ayurvedic Practices for Hypothyroidism:

  1. Ø  Diet and Lifestyle Changes: You need to change your diet completely for about three months so that your body gets rid of all toxins present in it. You should eat only pure foods such as fruits, vegetables, nuts and grains which help in balancing your hormones. Avoid oily food as it may lead to weight gain and other disorders like heart problems and diabetes mellitus. Avoid consuming processed foods as they contain preservatives which can slow down metabolism and make you gain weight rapidly.
  2. Ø  Cut back on sugar: Sugar is one of the main reasons behind hypothyroidism. So try to make it sure that you cut down on sugar as much as possible. Also avoid foods like white bread, pastries, cakes etc. cutting back on sugar is one of the best practices for Hypothyroidism.
  3. Ø  Yoga and Pranayama: Yoga is considered as to improve all health aspects as well as the mental health. It helps in improving blood circulation and oxygen supply which is essential for proper functioning of your brain cells (neurotransmitters). Pranayama is also very useful in improving your overall health by helping to rid you from stress and anxiety. As the stress and anxiety may the cause of Hypothyroidism so yoga helps to some extent to cure the Hypothyroidism.

Understand what is Pranayama is and How to Perform Pranayama

Written by Syeda Saira

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Ayurvedic Remedy for High Uric Acid and Gout

Uric acid is a heterocyclic emulsion of carbon, nitrogen, hydrogen and oxygen. It’s a waste product of protein metabolism produced by the body from purines, which are present in all cells of the body and in numerous foods. Uric acid is excluded by being excreted in urine when it passes through the feathers.

High uric acid known as hyperuicemia occurs when kidneys don’t exclude uric acid efficiently that beget gout. Substantially, the cause of elevated uric acid situations is diet contains too important purine similar as red meat, organ meat, seafood etc.

Gout:

Gout called gouty arthritis occurs in about 20 of people with hyperuricemia. Gout can affect joints in body, but flares first appear in large toe. Bases, ankles, knees, and elbows are also common spots of gout.

Gout attacks occur suddenly, frequently at night. The attacks peak in intensity in about 12-14 hours. Undressed attacks of gout generally subside within two weeks.

 Symptoms of gout:

Following are the main symptoms you should look out for:

  • severe pain in joints
  • common stiffness
  • difficulty moving affected joints
  • redness and swelling
  • Monstrous joints

The pain is excruciating. It can be intermittent and come and go. It can be delicate to walk without pain and putting weight on bases at times. Cases may feel heaviness when walk or stand for long ages of time.

Gout stay:

An acute gout attack will generally reach its peak 12-24 hours after onset, and also will sluggishly begin to resolve indeed without treatment. Full recovery from a gout attack takes 7-14 days.

A Rejuvenating and Anti-Aging Tonic for Gout

One of the best known Ayurvedic Tonics – known as the Elixir of Life is Chyawanprash. According to Ayurveda, Chyawanprash comes under the category of ‘Rasayana’ which aims at maintaining youthfulness, vigor, vitality of the body and keeping away aging process.

Read more about it in this article: 20 Benefits of Chyawanprash

Ayurvedic Remedy for High Uric Acid and Gout:

High uric acid can treat with natural herbs. Ayurveda treats the root cause of the problem, not just the symptoms. So it can reduce uric acid levels and also keep them from rising again. Ayurvedic herbs have no side effects because they are natural herbs.

There are a number of Ayurvedic treatments for gout similar as

  • Triphala means “three fruits.” it’s an herbal treatment that consists of three fruits, videlicet bibhitaki, amalaki, and haritaki. It’s an anti-inflammatory, so it reduces the inflammation associated with gout.
  • Giloy is a generally used herb. Juice extract from the stem of giloy is largely effective for treatment of gout as it helps to neutralize the increased uric acid level in the body.
  • Neem is used to reduce inflammation and soothe gout flare-ups. It can be made into paste and applied to the affected area by gout. Neem also comes in oil and capsule form.
  • Bitter gourd is recommended Ayurvedic treatment of gout. Still, there’s no scientific substantiation that suggests that bitter gourd can reduce uric acid level or treat gout.

Check this Bitter Gourd Stir Fry or Karela Bhaji Recipe

  • Cherries and dark berries in diet reduce the level of uric acid. Eating at least 10 cherries per day reduced the circumstance of gout flare-ups by 35.
  • Turmeric generally used as spice. In Ayurveda, turmeric is believed to have a number of benefits. Curcumin, the active component in turmeric, is an effective treatment for gout. Turmeric is fairly safe to add in curries, mists, and more. It’s frequently consumed in haldi doodh, also known as golden milk.

Get my Turmeric: The Ayurvedic Golden Gem which is a detailed e-book on turmeric’s health benefits (with over 100 studies), Ayurvedic information, usage, 70 recipes, DIY healing recipes, supplement guide, and more. A great health resource and cookbook!

  • Ginger most generally used herb in Ayurveda, gusto has a number of benefits. Ginger is an effective treatment for inflammatory conditions especially for gout. Ginger can fluently be added to diet. Check out my Ginger & Turmeric Pickle Recipe.

Keep in mind, fasting may not be suitable for people with certain health conditions such as chronic kidney disease, gout, and high uric acid.

Let me know once to start to apply these tips and what worked for you. You can also try my Kapha Detox program. I have both vegetarian and non-vegetarian versions.

Written By: Syeda Saira

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Metabolism

In every living organism in this world, there is a chemical reaction happening which is known as Metabolism. We use this term to describe every chemical reaction happening in the body’s cells that helps in breaking down food into energy. Every living thing desperately needs this energy to survive. It controls the physical phenomenon as well, which includes:

  • Helps in blood circulation
  • Proper breathing
  • Aids in controlling body temperature

Through our wonderful workings of metabolism, life is sustained in this world.

Few people have a fast metabolism, and it can make you lose weight faster than people who have a slower metabolism. For a healthy life, it is crucial to have a healthy metabolism which helps in giving the energy to fight off diseases and ensure a peaceful life.

Ayurvedic ways to improve your metabolism

In Ayurveda, we happen to see various ways that hold the power to greatly helps in improving our metabolism. Some of the best are mentioned below:

  • Start the day with a lukewarm glass of water or with a warm cup of herbal tea: This helps in removing toxins from your system and improving your digestive system.
  • Use your body temperature as a guide: this means eating hot food when you’re cold and cooling food when you’re hot such as coconut milk.
  • Don’t skip any meals: In Ayurveda, skipping even a single meal is not an option. Make sure to eat wholesome food on time, and in the right portions
  • Use spices like Cinnamon: Cinnamon is a sweet oriental herb that is great for your digestive fire and helps in revving up the metabolism. You can either consume Cinnamon through tea or while eating a meal that is high on carbohydrates.
  • Drink a glass of cumin water daily
  • Use black pepper: Pepper is said to consist of piperine that aids in improving our metabolism. You can add it to your tomato juice and drink it up which will give your body the ability to burn calories faster.
  • Sleep and Metabolism: Having a sound sleep at night does have an impact on having a fast metabolism. Sleeping for too long or having disruptions while sleeping can be a cause of weight gain. Studies show that people who sleep less than 6 hours per night have the tendency to eat more (especially carbohydrates) because they have reduced leptin levels. People who sleep less do not have the energy to exercise which will lead to weight gain. 7-8 hours of sleep is considered adequate.
  • Meditate to reduce stress and anxiety: Dedicating some time in a day to yourself even for 5 minutes can helps in reducing stress and anxiety which in turn greatly improve one’s metabolism.
  • Water and Kapha Dosha: Staying hydrated is a key to a healthy metabolism. Most of us lose 3 – 4 liters of water through urination, sweat, breathing, and bowel movement. Those who exercise also lose a lot of water as well as those who consume dry foods (chips, cookies, bread, etc.). Kapha dosha imbalances happen due to overeating, eating dry foods, high salt foods, and poor water metabolism. The body becomes more dehydrated and struggles with enzymatic activity. 1-2 liters of warm water per day is ideal for Kapha dosha. Sip water throughout the day to keep the body hydrated all day long.

Let me know once to start to apply these tips and what worked for you. You can also try my Kapha Detox program. I have both vegetarian and non-vegetarian versions.

There are also some recipes on my website that promotes healthy weight loss. Such as Mung Dal SoupAyurvedic Protein BallsMakhana recipeHomemade Curry Paste, and Almond Milk Recipe

Written By: Syeda Saira

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Since this Valentine’s Day is approaching, you may be coming up with gifts ideas, or date night ideas and maybe browsing about it. The best thing to do at the moment is to read everything written in this post, as we have written down about Herbal Aphrodisiac which greatly helps to make this valentine’s day special.

Herbal Aphrodisiac for Valentines Day

In Ayurveda, herbal aphrodisiacs have the benefits of helping the body, and mind to relax and also greatly help in arousing your senses. Herbal aphrodisiac goes way back in centuries and it has made its way into many cultures across the world all because of their potent abilities.

It is true that every one of us responds differently but it’s through trying out things that we find what we prefer.

Read: Ayurvedic Herbs and Pranayama for Respiratory Health

Let us break it down into two categories according to genders

– Female Herbs

  1. Shatavari

This spice is highly beneficial for reproductive system health for women. It helps in supporting immunity but also greatly promotes the production of breast milk.

  1. Horny Goat Weed

Horny Goat Weed is an herb that has been used for centuries around the world especially in China to treat symptoms like fatigue, pain, etc. It helps in increasing blood flow. Its leaves are used to make medicine.

  1. Vitex – Nilguri (check the Ayurvedic name)

During the menstrual cycle, herbs like vitex greatly help in establishing the normal balance of progesterone and estrogen which in turn ease breast pain.

  1. Moringa

Moringa is an herbal plant that typically grows in continents like Africa and Asia. It is best used as a remedy for health conditions like Diabetes. The best part is that it can be easily and cheaply grown. A few other names it is called by are miracle tree or the drumstick tree.

  1. Cacao

Cacao contains aphrodisiac qualities. It is bitter in taste but very beneficial. It is said that Cacao decreases the chances of cardiovascular disease.

– Male Herbs

  1. Ashwagadha

Ashwagandha is a herb best for males that is said to offer numerous health benefits which include treating stress and anxiety, improving mood, inflammation, blood sugar, and much more.

  1. Shilajit

Shilajit is usually found in the rocks of the Himalayas and is commonly used in ayurvedic medicine. It leaves a positive effect on your overall health and wellness.

  1. Gokshura

Diseases like urinary tract disorders, kidney diseases, and erectile dysfunction are treated by Gokshura. It helps in treating UTIs as well.

  1. Safed Museli

Safed Museli is a very rare herb and is usually used for obesity, erectile dysfunction (ED), and also for athletic performance.

  1. Pine Pollen

Pine Pollen is believed to have anti-aging properties that have been long used in traditional medicine and also used to treat many health conditions. Pine Pollen also boosts testosterone.

Spices for both Genders

Of course, there are spices that go for both genders. They are mentioned following below:

  1. Cinnamon

Cinnamon is best for both females and males as it’s a source of manganese, a mineral essential that helps in boosting sperm production, and it is known as a natural aphrodisiac. It is also commonly used in infertility treatment.

  1. Nutmeg

Nutmeg is another best aphrodisiac that imitates the effect of serotonin. Its sharp aroma and spicy taste of nutmeg give your body a calming effect.

  1. Saffron

Saffron is an expensive and also well-known aphrodisiac that has been used since ancient times as a natural aphrodisiac.

Read: Top 10 Brain-Boosting Ayurvedic Herbs for Memory & Nervous System

Hope you understand Herbal Aphrodisiac that I listed for both genders in detail.

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You are most likely to be infected with cold and flu unless you live in a bubble. But there is always a way. Proper care and smart choices make all the difference to protect yourself from infections even if there is a cold and flu season.

Before we dive into ayurvedic preparation, let’s first understand briefly about the cold and flu season.

What Is Cold and Flu Season?

In terms of symptoms, flu is generally worse than the common cold. According to experts, cold and flu season tend to last for about 12 weeks but it mostly depends on where you live.

Now, there are numerous ways you can treat cold and flu, but the wise thing to do is to prepare for it. What does it mean? Well, when you work towards preventing getting sick or infected, and you use the right methods for the prevention, then you’re most likely to be protected from infections like cold and flu.

Symptoms:

If you have been feeling a few of these mentioned symptoms, then it means you have probably have caught the flu or cold.

  • General tiredness or fatigue
  • Difficult breathing deeply
  • Body or muscle aches
  • Fever
  • Coughing
  • Sore throat
  • Stuffy or running nose
  • Loss of appetite
  • Headaches
  • Nausea/vomiting
  • Diarrhea

Ayurvedic Preparation for Cold and Flu Season

Prathishyay is a term for the common cold in Ayurvedic. Ayurveda strongly recommends the strengthening of the immunity to prevent diseases like flu or cold from its attack. Following are some of the best Ayurvedic Preparation for Cold and Flu Season.

  • Chew on Dry Ginger

Ginger has strong antioxidant and anti-microbial along with pain-relieving properties which helps in relieving sore throat and treating infections in the nasal passage. You can either chew dry ginger or inhale ginger-infused steam that will greatly help in reducing sinus and lung congestion.

  • Do pranayama and stretching

Doing pranayama and stretching is known to relieve chest constriction due to sneezing, or coughing. It is basically, sitting in a relaxed position with a straight back, taking a deep breath, and allowing the breath to fill your upper chest. And release the breath and along with it the tensions and the stresses.

  • Hydration is the key

One of the most common and easiest ayurvedic preparation is to remember to stay hydrated. Whether you like to drink water or lemon/honey-infused water, it’s important to be hydrated by taking your required daily intake. Most people also like sipping watermelon or cucumber juice, make sure that it is made without any preservatives and is fresh. Remember to consume homemade immune-boosting drinks and you’re good to go.

In ending notes, there are a few more ayurvedic preventions you can do such as gargle with salted water, sipping lukewarm water, eating light, and a nourishing meal. All of these not only fight off cold and flu but also build your immune system. This ayurvedic preparation will greatly help and will fight off any existing disease-spreading germs and viruses.

Kadha Recipe

In India when someone has a cold, flu, infection, sore throat or body ache their mother’s or grandmother’s make “Kadha” at home. Kadha means herbal tea – it is a medicinal tea. Although today many herbal teas are available at health food stores, I can assure you this is a great homemade herbal tea replacement where you are only using your humble kitchen healers.  I am sharing with you my favorite Kadha Recipe A Traditional Healing Tea.

I have made Kadha for myself and have seen great results for cold and body pain. It is indeed ‘health in a cup.’ When I make kadha, I sometimes add turmeric and/or reishi mushroom which is not used in the traditional recipe

Read more about it here.

Warming Energy Ball

Made with dates, sesame, fenugreek, and coconut. Add seeds as available. Such as pumpkin, sunflower, or char magaz.

Tips

  • Steam with eucalyptus oil if they get the sniffles or feet massage with warm mustard seed oil before bed. 
  • Putting 1 clove under the tongue can prevent sore throat.
  • Not to drink citrus fruit. Lime or lemon juice should be taken with warm water. 
  • Wearing socks can help with keeping the feet warm. 
  • Cinnamon tea improves circulation and keeps the warm today. 
  • In extremely cold weather add a bay leaf to the cinnamon tea.

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What is Migraine?

Migraine is a medical condition in which a person experiences an extremely severe pounding headache. It can last for hours or sometimes even days. The ponding headache typically starts from the forehead, between the temples, or around the eyes. Migraine headaches get worse with time. A person experiencing migraine is sensitive to any movement, action, bright light, or loud noises. Any such sensation makes the headache worse. A person can also experience nausea, dizziness, neck pain, vomiting, extreme fatigue, and nasal congestion during a migraine. Severe migraines can affect a person’s daily life.

Are Migraine and Headache the same?

People usually confuse migraines with headaches. They think that a severe headache is known as a migraine, but in general, headache is one of the symptoms of migraine. The symptoms of migraine are more intense as compared to headache. Migraine is a medical chronic condition, and the cause is unknown. Headaches on the other hand can be triggered due to stress, depression, or anxiety and typically goes away in few hours.

What causes and trigger Migraine?

A migraine occurs typically in three stages, these are:

Stage 1: Prodrome

This stage involves emotional changes such as depression and anxiety. At this stage, a person will be sensitive to any movement, action, bright light, or loud noises.

Stage 2: Mild to Severe Headache

At this stage, the person may experience other common symptoms like nausea, dizziness, neck pain, vomiting, tiredness, and nasal congestion

Stage 3: Migraine Hangover

At this stage, the person feels extreme fatigue and irritability which may last for another 2 days.

Ayurvedic Treatments to Treat Migraine

In Ayurveda, migraine is known as “Ardhavabhedhaka” and the vital cause of migraine is due to tridoshic condition which causes an imbalance of pitta-vata and gathers Ama toxins. Following ayurvedic treatments are used to treat migraines. Depending on the severity of migraine, we can combine the treatment methods.

 

  • Triphala Churna

Triphala churna is an organic blend of haritaki, bibhitaki, and amla. It helps to improve nasal congestion and blockage.

  • Ksheera Ghrita

Ksheera ghrita is a glass of milk and ghee which is mixed to effectively treat migraine headaches.

  • Sitopaladi Churna

Sitopaladi churna is a combination of mishri, vankshalochana pepper, cardamom, and cinnamon. By using sitopaladi churna, increases the lung’s capacity and eliminates cough. It can also be consumed with honey.

  • Dhoomapana

Dhoomapana is used to lower levels of stress, depression, and anxiety. It calms the nerves the lighten to load on the head.

  • Nasya

This is one of the highly recommended “Panchakarma Therapy” to cure migraines or continued headaches. For better results, do it early in the morning on an empty stomach an hour before having a meal. This treatment provides significant relief from migraines.

Other Treatments to Treat Migraine

  • Yoga
  • Regular Exercise
  • Relaxation Techniques

 

References:

https://familydoctor.org/condition/migraines/

https://www.summahealth.org/flourish/entries/2020/08/migraines-vs-headaches-whats-the-difference

https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/148373

https://www.netmeds.com/health-library/post/migraine-bothering-you-try-these-versatile-ayurvedic-remedies-for-instant-pain-relief

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What is Sandalwood?

Sandalwood is an evergreen tree native to India, Philippines, China, Australia, and Indonesia. In botanical terms, Sandalwood is also known as Santalnum album. It is also known as “East Indian sandalwood, santal oil, white or yellow sandalwood oil, or white Saunders oil. It belongs to the family of Santalaceae. It has small flowers which contain many short stalks. Sandalwood belongs to the class of aromatic woods, which are knowns as perfume trees. Famous aromatic wood trees are cedar, cinnamon wood, and rosewood. Sandalwood trees grow about 8 to 12 meters in height and 2.5 meters in girth.

 

Sandalwood Oil

The Sandalwood tree has leathery leaves in pairs. The roots and trees have a yellow aromatic oil, which is known as sandalwood oil. The smell of sandalwood oil is so refreshing, and it persists in the articles, such as furniture or boxes, for years. Sandalwood oil is extracted from the heartwood by the process of steam distillation. The average yield of oil is almost from 3.0% to 6.0%. The sandalwood oil smell is very famous because of its sweet, powerful, and lasting odor. The sandalwood trees grow slowly and almost take 30 years for the heartwood to become frugally beneficial in India.

 

Uses of Sandalwood

Sandalwood in any form, be it solid or in oily form, has numerous uses in our daily lives. It plays a vital role in healing many skin conditions. Some of them are:

  • Sandalwood in self-care products like fragrances, body lotions, massage products, hair care products, sunscreen, shampoo, and acne medications.
  • Sandalwood oil is used as a fragrance in incense, perfumes, cosmetics, and soaps.
  • Sandalwood in cleaning products, like in laundry detergents and all-purpose cleaners.
  • Sandalwood in pest control products.
  • Sandalwood in aromatherapy. Using sandalwood oil in aromatherapy helps to promote calmness, lower stress, and improves sleep quality.
  • Sandalwood can also be used to enhance flavors in foods.

 

Health Benefits of Sandalwood

Sandalwood has various health benefits. It can be used as an antiseptic, antispasmodic, astringent, antiphlogistic, carminative, disinfectant, diuretic, hypotensive, and memory-enhancing properties.

  • It is a great antiseptic agent and is safe to use internally and externally. It is used to treat acne, sores, boils, and pimple infections.
  • It is a strong anti-inflammatory agent. It has a very cool soothing effect and provides instant relief to the inflammation in the gastrointestinal, brain, nervous, circulatory, and excretory systems.
  • It is a great natural relaxant and has a wonderful sedative effect against spasms. It is very effective in treating cramps, aches, and colds.
  • Sandalwood oil is amazing to lower blood pressure as it contains hypotensive agents. It can be applied externally and will still help to lower hypertension.
  • Sandalwood fortifies dental health as it has astringent properties. It helps to stop bleeding gums, healing minor wounds, and cleansing of mouth.

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The Power of Microgreens - the Sattvic Food Gem in Ayurveda

What are Microgreen?

Mircrogreens, which are also known as “vegetable confetti”, are baby plants which are harvested between 10 and 14 days from seeding. They are young edible seedlings of beans, herbs, grains, and vegetables. They are sometimes confused with sprouts because they are tiny and perfect. They are easily available from shops and can be grown anywhere even at home using vegetables seeds, grains, or herbs. Microgreens are loaded with nutrients and vitamins, because of which they are also known as the powerhouse of natures multivitamins. They are also known as living foods because they are organic and very close to nature.

Microgreens

How do you grow them? (Hydroponic and in soil)

Mircogreens are an amazing source of nutrients. They are very easy and fun to grow, whether indoors or outdoors. People who are interested in kitchen gardening, grow microgreens in their kitchen window ledges. We can harvest mircogreens in 2-3 weeks. Microgreens can be grown in soil or hydroponic environment. Microgreens which are grown using in soil and hydroponic methods have high nutritional values.

Growing microgreens in soil requires soil and ample amount of sunlight. Sattvic foods, such as peas, sunflower, beets, cilantro, lentils, beans and others are grown in soil. Sattvic foods are very simple and should be grown organically using extremely rich fertile soil.

In Hydroponic method, a good sunlight is needed to grow microgreens. Instead of soil, mineral nutrient solutions in water is used to grow microgreens. This method is excellent for indoor or kitchen gardening. A few microgreens which are grown hydroponically are, lettuce, spinach, bell peppers, cucumbers, and strawberries.

Microgreens

Microgreens

How to add them to your daily diet?

As mentioned earlier, microgreens are powerhouse of natures multivitamin. Adding them into our daily diet will give us daily dose of multivitamins we need. Some of the ways you can incorporate it into your daily diet is:

  • Add microgreens into your salad.
  • Place microgreens (like lettuce) into wraps for extra crunchy flavor.
  • Add microgreens into your smoothies and juices.
  • Garnish or sprinkle into any dish you eat.
  • Add microgreens into your omelet, sandwiches, pizzas, flatbreads, or rolls.

You can easily incorporate microgreens into your daily life because they are taste enhancer and can be added into any food.

Microgreens salad

Types of seeds that can be grown for microgreens

– legumes (chickpea, mung beans, lentils), grains (Buckwheat, Amaranth & Wheat), seeds (sunflower), Brassica family (Broccoli, cabbage, Kale. Radish, Watercress, Arugula, Mustard, Kolrabi etc), Herbs (Cilantro, Basil Sorel, Dill, Anise, Mint, Oregano, Sage), Onion family (Chives, Leeks, Onions and Garlic)

My Top 12 Microgreens

Following are my top 12 microgreens:

  • Alfalfa
  • Broccoli
  • Buckwheat
  • Cabbage
  • Clover
  • Fenugreek
  • Mung
  • Mustard
  • Peas
  • Radish
  • Sunflower
  • Watercress

These microgreens contain innumerable benefits. Because they are powerhouse of natures multivitamin, it prevents many diseases and helps to manage weight. They also assist to treat mental and physical health. They have antioxidant property, which helps to remove unstable waste molecules known as free radicals from the body. Broccoli contains phenolic antioxidant and high levels of vitamin E. Lettuce contains carotenoid antioxidants and is high in vitamin A. Each microgreen contains specific antioxidant.

Microgreen
A brief description about each microgreen is given below:

  • Alfalfa

This herb is also known as Medicago Sativa. It contains saponins, estrogenic isoflavonoids (e.g., daidzein, genistein), vitamin K, and the amino acid L-canavanine. Alfalfa is highly nutritious and have high nitrogen content in it.

  • Broccoli

A branched, green vegetable which has numerous health benefits because it is highly nutritious. It contains fiber, vitamin C, vitamin K, iron, and potassium and helps to prevent cancer, improve digestion, boost immunity and lose weight.

  • Buckwheat

A type of grain, pseudo cereal, is gluten-free and contains minerals, protein, and fiber. It is a superfood and helps to improve heart condition and promote healthy weight loss. It also aids to manage diabetes.

  • Cabbage

An excellent snack because it has very few calories in it. It has layers of leaf and can be eaten raw in salad. It taste very delicious and crispy.

  • Clover

A small fragrant flower herb which has a nutty flavor. They are very easy and quick to grow.

  • Fenugreek

A clover like herb, which contains different alkaloids, flavonoids and saponins. It has powerful blend of flavors and is used in medicine and cooking. It is used as an appetite stimulant, and to treat atherosclerosis, constipation, diabetes, dyspepsia/gastritis, fevers, kidney ailments

  • Mung

Mung are rich in vitamins, minerals, protein and fiber. They have fewer calories and has numerous health benefits.

  • Mustard

Mustard is a broadleaf, cruciferous, cool-seasoned annual oilseed crop produced mostly for the condiment market.

  • Peas

Peas are not a vegetable but actually belong from the legumes food category. They are low in calories and low in fat. They are very healthy and nutritious to eat.

  • Sunflower

Easily grown in soil only, they are an amazing source of iron and calcium.

  • Watercress

Watercress contains high amount of vitamin A, vitamin K, and vitamin C. Besides this, they are an amazing source of folate, calcium, iron and vitamin E.

Reference: https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/316075#benefits

Written By: Syeda Saira

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