Ayurveda, the science of life, is a more a way of life than a way to treat people. Prevention is far better to curing a disease according to Ayurveda. I will share with you some tips that will help you lead a healthier and better life.
1. Have a daily routine.
Ayurveda suggests us to have a daily routine and stick to it. Sleeping and waking times are very crucial in Ayurveda. For example: the liver cleansesitself during the night (12 am to be exact), during this time the person should be fully asleep, this is why Ayurveda recommends the sleeping time to be around 10 PM. Waking up should be around 6 AM. Eating at regular times should be also adopted, this way the body and the Agni (Digestive fire) are working properly, and food will be digested right.
2. Eat hot food!
Don’t make your diet solely raw. Eating small salad as a side dish is ok; however, the food itself should be warm, seasoned with spices to aid digestion. Drinking large amounts of liquids during meals will only dilute the digestive acids which will result in poor digestion and assimilation. Drinking sips of warm ginger water will be ok. A tip from Bhavaprakash: few slices of fresh ginger, sprinkled with rock salt and few drops of lemon chewed before food, will aid in digestion and will help in prevention of gas formation.
3. Eat when you are hungry!
When we feel hunger we know the previous meal has been digested; now Agni is ready to digest the next. When eating when there is no hunger, it will lead to Kapha disorders, gaining weight, poor assimilation and indigestion.
4. Drink when you are thirsty.
Don’t drink 3 litres per day or whatever rumors tell you. Our body knows exactly when it needs liquid and will cause you the thirst feeling. When drinking more than needed, Kapha problems will occur, kidney problems etc.
5. Never suppress your body’s natural urges.
Yes, we are in a civilized and cultural community and we can’t just burp, right? Wrong! When suppressing bodily urges (cough, burp, flatus etc.), it will result in a disturbance of Vata, when Vata is disturbed it will lead to problems such as gas not leaving the body, breathing problems, bloating etc. Find a proper way to do this.
6. Walk during the day. Practice Yoga.
A bit of exercise is very important for the body. Besides the fact the brain releases endorphins and serotonin during exercise to make us feel good, the whole body benefits from exercise. Agni is maintained in its optimal state when practising Yoga or any other sport. Even walking a bit everyday will be beneficial. Going off the bus two stations before your destination, and walking to it, is a nice routine to follow. Remember: practise until one gets sweaty, that is the stopping limit for one’s body.
7. Drink room temperature water upon waking up.
Drinking room temperature water (a bit cold is also ok), will help having a bowel movement as it stimulates Apana Vata. During sleep we fast for as long as we are sleeping, returning liquid to the body is very important.
8. An advice from Vimalananda (Dr. Robert Svoboda’s Mentor).
Keep your body moving, keep your bowels moving, keep your breath moving. By keeping this rule one will lead a long healthy life. I have already mentioned the benefits of exercise, avoiding constipation (regular bowel movements), and of course breathing well, deep and fully.
9. Practice meditation at least 20 minutes a day.
Practising meditation daily for 20 minutes will help one cope with the daily life activities and crises. Meditation has been proven to help one with resistance to stress and to provide better understanding and to make complexities simpler.
10. Look at the bright side of life!
Life isn’t that bad when you look at it, life has lots of surprises, some don’t make us so happy; however learning from each incident will be the right thing to do. Look at the beautiful things you have, rather than seeing the negative sides.
May you all lead a healthy and fruitful life!