When it comes to keeping a balanced lifestyle in Ayurveda, one of the most important things we look at is how the functioning of the elements are being expressed within a person.
But if I am looking at an overall of what everyone can do, I would say one of the best things I recommend to pretty much all of my clients is when you wake up in the morning start your morning off with hot water.
HOT WATER FIRST THING IN THE MORNING
One of the reasons why hot water is so fantastic for the body, especially in the morning time, is because it awakens the internal digestive system. It gets the digestion to wake up and clear out the blockages in preparation for elimination.
Another great thing about having the hot water is that if you notice, some people wake up with an acidic feeling or hunger pain. So what the hot water does is that it immediately calms and relaxes the digestive system so that a person doesn’t feel inclined to have to run to food very fast. They can take their time, have the hot water and maybe sit down and meditate.
If you want to take that a little bit further, depending on your body type, the overall consensus is that people go with hot water and lemon. If your body type tends to be running more hot, I would suggest using lime. If your tendency is a bit more on the cooler side then lemon would be a good option.
So that’s pretty much a very good overall starting place for more people is just having a nice cup of hot water in the morning.
Another thing that we like to recommend in Ayurveda is something called Chyawanprash. Chyawanprash is under one of the different types of herbal remedies that are meant mainly for rejuvenation of the body. For most people in our day and age, because of the pace of their lifestyles and the amount of information they are consuming on a daily basis, their nervous systems are wrecked. In addition to their nervous systems being pretty wrecked, their capacity to be present is very seldom. If they are present, it is only for a moment and over time, with this kind of lifestyle, it slowly starts to deplete the vitality within the body. So when it starts to deplete the vitality of the body, some of the things we initially start to see is our minds start to get a bit scattered. We can lose motivation. We can have a bit of what I would call irrational fears. As we start to deplete ourselves and aggravate this element of Vata, or the air/ether element within ourselves, it takes those little things that we feel are not been a big deal when we’re in a clear state of mind and sets us off into stress with the added pressure.
Chyawanprash is a 5, 000 year old recipe that was created by a sage named Chyawan. He realized that many people in this world, even at that time, need to take some kind of herbal supplement to give them a bit more of not only a cleansing effect but also a strengthening and rejuvenating kind of effect.
Most people don’t want to take the herbs because predominantly, most herbs have a very bitter taste to them and to get people to take herbs can be very challenging.
There is a science within Ayurveda called Rasayana or a rejuvenative tonic and these are mainly coupled with a sweet taste. So the sweet taste makes it much easier for people to not only take herbs but take them as part of a regular routine. So Sage Chyawan knew that this was a challenge at that time and that it would be a challenge for many thousands of years, especially for us high maintenance people of 2016. So he formulated this ancient formula known as a Rasayana which. traditionally, is a formula that has between 35 to 50 different ingredients.
I recommend a formula from an amazing producer of these different kinds Rasayanas and Ayurvedic products and it is called Lotus Blooming Herbs. They make this amazing Chyawanprash and this one has about 35 different ingredients with a very nice sweetness to it. So if you take this every morning, about a teaspoon mixed with hot water, the combination of the two allows for the saliva to release the enzymes and really latch onto the food that’s being consumed into the body and really starts the digestive process. It’s almost like a wine tasting, you’re really allowing yourself to experience the taste and as you’re experiencing the taste your body is recognizing different tastes and those tastes release certain metabolic functions within the body.
FORMULA FOR MUSCLES
Vai: In addition to Chyawanprash, can you mention a formula or herbs that can help yogis with muscles and circulation?
Vasu: Well, most yogis have challenges with keeping their muscles pretty solid right? As a yogi what problems do you face?
Vai: Sometimes there is overworking of the muscles or the pulling of a muscle or just fatigue. Coming in to class and feeling like you’re too tired to keep up. Or having gas, you feel like there is so much gas when you do those gas expelling poses and other asanas. So I know these are issues that yogis can have in their bodies.
Vasu: Yeah, absolutely. In Ayurveda we look at the different types of tissue: muscle, fat, we have the nervous system and we look at the hydration through the blood plasma. We also look at the health of the different kinds of reproductive systems, the different types of organs.
So depending on where you’re imbalanced, we will use a specific kind of herb for that. We don’t usually use one herb for the most part, usually we use a mixture of different herbs to take on what the problem is and really attack it from many different angles. There are different formulas that are really good. There is one formula that I recommend to some of my clients if they’re having a bit of stiffness in their joints or in their tendons. I use this one and I’ve had really good success with it., it’s called Flexcel and is made by a company called Maharishi Ayurveda.
It has a range of different herbs and works really fantastic with helping to detox and increase the lubrication and flexibility in the joint. A lot of times when we are having those kind of joint pains or joint problems, it is connected to a build up we would call ama in the body. There is so much more to say about this and it can be a whole topic unto itself.
The other thing that you mentioned can be a challenge for yogis, is exhaustion or fatigue.
So, a great thing for exhaustion is sleep. Stop working so hard! You know? Overworking, this is what most people do. They take on more than they can chew and then they half-ass everything. And then what happens as they’re half-assing is that most of the time they not able to do everything that they’ve committed to. Therefore, their intention going into these projects was good and loving and in being of service, but the outcome is they end up feeling bad because they are letting people down.
So its like a double whammy on not only the nervous system and the mental system but on the physical body. So being more mindful of what you are taking on in your life is a huge thing. Being reasonable with your time.
Seeing first off, how much does it take to fill up your cup? And once you’ve understood the need or the process for filling your cup up, I always say that whatever spills out of your cup is what you can serve to others.
So it goes back to managing your lifestyle so that you’re not taking on too much or more than you can chew. When you take on few things and you haven’t spread yourself too thin you can do really high quality work. And what happens, is not only are you putting less on your plate but you are doing the things that you’ve committed to with higher quality, which increases the good feeling that you have upon completing it. You are doing your work with high quality, a lot of presence and awareness and the fact that you can give something that is high quality and feel good about it. In turn, this also rejuvenates your system. So you’re creating less fatigue, you’re creating better positive energy flowing through the body.
Then, the expression that you’re giving the world is much more balanced instead of erratic and overbooked. It feels like everyone is running around overbooked and you can see it in the way they’re driving, in the way they’re talking, you can see it in the way they’re living— from one thing to the next. Not calm or relaxed, just rushing or running about and you can see it on their faces.
So it just comes down to slowing down. Taking a deep breath, connecting with your spirit, connecting with your mission, connecting with nature, just connecting. Another part of that connection is learning how to disconnect.
Disconnection comes at a very important time which we call rest. We can put this in different ways, there are different ways of looking at this, different approaches, but one of the things that I’ve learned with Ayurveda is that one way to look at the function and the health of the body is through these four pillars and they are:
If you look at these four pillars and they are balanced and functioning, you can see very clearly higher quality of life. So if you’re having incredible sleep problems and you’re having digestive issues, you can see how that’s really challenging your entire physiology through those four pillars.
Now if you’re having pretty bad sleep problems, that can really tip over your experience because sleep is so important. Each one of those pillars is so important. Each one of those, if you really put your time into them you are investing in yourself by doing them correctly and with the proper mindset.
ABOUT VASU DUDAKIA
About Vasu Dudakia:
Trained in the ancient guru disciple tradition of India, Vasu Dudakia has developed hands-on skills in guiding others to balancing the stresses and pressures of life through the mind body and digestive wisdom of Ayurveda. He has been practicing the Mind-body practices and lifestyle of Ayurveda since 2011, has trained in Marma Therapy under Madhusudan Rai & Damian Hagglund and completed a 750-hour course on Ayurveda under the guidance of Dr. Paul Dugliss. His offerings include: Ayurvedic Lifestyle Consultations: Identifying the root cause of imbalance with prescriptions to balance, his specialty Marma treatments known as the Mother of acupuncture, acupressure and shiatsu predating the use of needles to stimulate energy flow and healing, Ayurvedic cooking classes, workshops and retreats. He commits his life to being of service, inspiring others to make better decisions that are in line with their true nature, balance. To get in touch visit Vedahh.com.
Bonus: Yogi Power Dessert
Yogi Power Dessert is a great natural and organic treat for those yogis who work hard. The Chia seeds provide protein, the Reishi Mushroom and Chi Tonic provide energy and the rest of the yummy ingredients fulfill the sweet cravings for your pleasure. This is a delicious pudding that can be served chilled and eaten before or after yoga for that healthy boost of energy and flavor. More Raw Vegan Dessert Recipes for Yogis and all.