Even if your constitution is predominantly vata, pitta, or kapha, we can all experience the impact nervousness and anxiety play on our bodies and mind. Typically considered a sign of vata imbalance, anxiety and nervousness can get the best of us sometimes.
When the gunas (qualities) of vata such as cold, light, and dry, are elevated and lodge into our nervous system, they can deplete the myelin sheath. The myelin sheath is the exterior, protective portion that surrounds the axons of neurons in our central and peripheral nervous systems. The myelin sheath is comprised of proteins and lipids which make a fatty layer. When this protective layer is depleted due to high vata, the flow of electrical signals in our bodies can be compromised.
Signs of vata in our nervous system include constipation, indecision, fear, dry skin, worry, and anxiety. When the myelin sheath is depleted, our physical bodies can respond in unfavorable ways that can be debilitating to our daily lives. Majja dhatu is the tissue layer that is made up of our nervous tissue and bone marrow.
While we are continuing to navigate the world pandemic and other stressors in our lives, we can look to Ayurveda for tools to calm our nerves and handle any situation with ease and groundedness.
Check out Beverly’s video on Vata Dosha for more information on vata dosha.
Keep calm and carry on!
Winter is the time for hibernating.
No matter your prakruti, or unique constitution, we all can feel the effects of the winter season. With shorter days and less access to the sun, winter embodies kapha qualities; cold, heavy, slow, liquid. It is important to consider how we are managing our daily routine to balance the influence these qualities may have on our health. As we are in the thick of the holiday season, let’s add some light to our winter days!
I like to bake this simple veggie recipe on cold days:
Set oven to 425 degrees. Rinse and cut: 2 white potatoes, 2 sweet potatoes, 2 broccoli heads, 3 peeled red beets, 3 carrots, large handful of brussel sprouts halved, 8 cloves of unpeeled garlic, drizzle olive oil, sprinkle with salt and pepper, rosemary, and thyme. Bake for 1 hour, stirring vegetables every 15 minutes until evenly roasted.
Wishing you all an amazing holiday season and happy new year!
3-Day fall cleanse
Allowing your body to simply reset can be a great way to prepare for winter hibernation and make space for deep nourishment. Consider a simple, 3-day cleanse this fall to remove toxins from the body and strengthen your agni, or digestive system.
According to Ayurveda, the most important aspect of where health originates is the state of our agni (digestive fire). If we have a strong digestive system, we can process, absorb, and assimilate our foods. Unprocessed foods can lead to disease as the accumulation of doshas circulate throughout the body and lodge into weak spots, or kavya-gunas, of our organs and tissues. Having a strong agni can also relate to our mental and emotional being. If we are not absorbing or processing our thoughts and feelings, these energies can also lodge in our bodies and create disease.
Cleansing is the ideal way to buck up our immune system to stay well during the winter months.
Here are 3 simple, yet profound tips for a 3-day cleanse:
1. Kitchari. A mixture of basmati rice, mung bean and spices, offers supportive proteins and easy-to-digest food so that our bodies can focus on detoxifying. Try eating kitchari for two meals a day during a 3-day cleanse. You can add doshic appropriate veggies to get mineral and nutrients.
2. Take it easy! One of the best ways to allow your body to adjust to the changing seasons and detox during this short cleanse is to keep physical activities and physical strain to a minimum. Add simple yoga postures and breathing exercises to your daily routine. Give it 15 minutes of stretching and breathing with at least 5-10 minutes of meditation. Relax and rejuvenate! We are not only cleansing our bodies, but our minds. Journaling or emotional expression, like moving your body through dance, can be a great way to move unprocessed thoughts and emotions out of the body.
3. Triphala. Triphala is an amazing, gentle blend of three dried fruits that help the body remove toxins, including scraping the colon so that minerals can be absorbed better. This allows the body to absorb nutrients from our foods to remain healthy, and happy. One teaspoon a day on an empty stomach can help eliminate and help restore regular bowl movements. Vata doshas are better at soaking the herbs for at least a few hours before drinking.
Happy cleansing! And remember, keep it simple. The more we can keep our detoxing and cleanses simple, the more our bodies can rest and rejuvenate. Be well!
Thursday is ruled by Jupiter.
Jupiter, or Guru, is expansive, generous, and joyful in nature. Guru is considered the most benefic planet. Jupiter is Guru because he is the spiritual teacher who advocates for good will in the world. He bestows bounty, good luck, and shows generosity wherever he is placed in your chart. He represents creativity, philosophy, and intelligence; a well-placed, healthy Jupiter will show capabilities of obtaining higher education and intelligence. Jupiter indicates that which makes us genuinely happy and where we find fulfillment in life.
Sagittarius and Pisces are ruled by Jupiter.
A weak or debilitated Jupiter can make someone too optimistic and unable to logically make wise decisions. A lack of caution can create vulnerability to be deceived by others. A weak Jupiter can allow for someone to overspend or extend their resources. There may be some bad luck or issues with authorities. The expansive part of Jupiter can bring in too many #highereducation #teacher material goods into someone’s life and place too much emphasis on objects. A person can get lost in materialism.
A person with a strong Jupiter will be fun loving, joyous, and jolly!
“When Jupiter is with us, all life, all the universe is with us, for he is that cosmic and Devine beneficence” – David Frawley
My teacher, Dr. Lad and I.
Dr. Lad taught me nearly everything I know about Ayurveda and many things about life. As one of his personal herbalist, I learned a deeper side of Ayurvedic medicine, something you can not learn in books. I learned the language of herbal intelligence, a clearer perspective on herbal alchemy, and the power of intentional prayer.
Every Tuesday, my most important duty working in Dr. Lad's herb room was to bathe Ganesha. A heavy and ancient statue, Ganesha flew on Dr. Lad's lap from India to Albuquerque, NM. I would sing mantras under my breath to the love of human kind and care of all beings.
Everyday I feel a sense of honor to have learned and worked alongside Dr. Lad and many other amazing humans. Through Dr. Lad, The Speaker drops profound wisdom.
Mullein on the Banyan Botanicals' farm. This incredible herb grows so easily and strong in many places. Related to spinach, mullein is used for respiratory problems including asthma, cough, and bronchitis. As it soothes irritation in the throat and clears congestion, mullein flowers are also used to treat ear infections when infused with garlic in oil.
I love this herb for respiratory issues as it is a pretty gentle and loving plant. The compounds in mullein move phlegm out of the body while also soothing and tonifying the mucus membranes of the respiratory system.
The leaves are the part of the plant used; the seeds should not be consumed as they are toxic. Not to be used when pregnant.
For any herbal and Ayurvedic support, contact me at email@example.com.
Happy Beautiful Venus Day!
Feminine in spirit, Venus represents refinement, art, poetry, music, dance, pleasure. Those ruled by Venus or have a strong Venus in their chart tend to enjoy the refined qualities of life and have good taste.
Venus rules Taurus and Libra zodiac signs.
When underdeveloped or immature in a chart, Venus can create vanity and superficiality. She loves appearance and is attracted to pleasure, putting everything else at cost. Depending on her placement, she can force intense self-indulgence that turns destructive. Her feminine power can be deceiving and controlling. She loves the be desired, but never owned.
A refined or mature Venus in a birth chart will create love and devotion for truth. She beautifies the world around her, inspiring others toward purity and enjoyment. She is powerful; the romantic that can help us attain communication with the Divine. Where our Venus is placed in our chart indicates affection and harmony in our lives. The power of the Ocean is the power of Venus.
"Venus is joyful in spirit, possesses a beautiful body, is splendorous and has lovely eyes; she is the inspirer of poets, is watery and airy in constitution (kapha and vata), and has curly hair"
Blackberries from our farm!
While all berries are packed full of antioxidants, fruit in general is not to be combined with other foods. Fruit and berries are quickly digested and this can create fermentation in the gut when mixed with foods that take longer to digest.
Food combination is an important component in Ayurveda and many times we find that the source of stomach issues, including gas and indigestion, come from poor food combination. All food, herbs, and spices have their own taste (rasa), heating or cooling energy (virya), and post-digestive effect (vipaka). When conflicting foods are mixed, they can create toxins in our bodies and make it challenging to processes the food we consume.
Here are some general guidelines for proper food combination:
1. Never mix fruit with other foods, especially yogurt! Yogurt is already fermented and when combined with fruit, as most fruits have a sour quality, this creates a habitat for bad bacteria and fermentation. This combination also dampens our agni, or digestive fire. With a diminished agni, we can not have proper digestion and assimilation.
2. Stay away from combining meat and cheeses. Dairy mixed with meat is extremely tamasic, or heavy, and can create clogged arteries, high cholesterol, and stagnation in the body. Both of these food items should be eaten separately, as their specific qualities, especially when combined, are taxing on the body and lead to digestive issues.
3. While there can be a time a place for many food items, especially depending on your doshic constitution, season, and state of agni, raw foods are generally troublesome for the body. Raw foods can be difficult for our bodies to break up and absorb. Consider soaking nuts and cooking veggies to make sure you belly is happy, healthy, and supported!
We harvested Tulsi on the Banyan Botanicals Farm!
Tulsi, also known as holy basil, is an incredible herbal ally. Not only does this sattvic plant support our respiratory system to promote clear and easy breathing, it enhances our spiritual awareness and clears the mind. The energetics of Tulsi are heating, pungent, heating making it a strong candidate for protecting from fever.
While Tulsi is generally contraindicated during summer months or with high pitta, this plant was calming and relaxing to harvest.
Ujjayi, breath of victory.
How does it get anymore amazing than that? This throat clearing, muscle challenging, silly pranayama packs full a lot of benefits.
Targeting the thyroid gland, Ujjayi is a breathing technique that is not for the faint of heart. Sounding similar to a conch shell, this exercise is excellent for promoting confidence while also nourishing the nervous system. It does take a few times to get the hang of! Check out Beverly's guidance on the Breath of Victory.
*Ujjayi is contraindicated for high blood pressure and major thyroid issues.