Writer of Ayurved and Health

Ayurved and Health

Ayurved and Health

Ayurved and Health go hand in hand. Most people know that. But not many know exactly what to do so that we can remain healthy. Ayurved is not only about medicines, it’s a way of life. Now, let’s try to understand it in detail. Let’s begin at the beginning!

What is Ayurved?

Ayurveda (आयुर्वेद) = Ayushya (आयुष्य) + Veda (वेद)

Ayushya= Life, Veda=Wisdom / Knowledge.

 

Thus, “Ayurveda” which is a Sanskrit word, means the knowledge of life. Ayurveda includes various means and measures to protect and enhance ‘Ayushya’ or ‘Life’. More information about it are here.

  1. The guidelines for healthy living, which can prevent diseases.
  2. Therapeutic methods that act as curative measures.

Ayurveda ensures that there is complete harmony and balance in one’s physical, mental and emotional aspects of life.

Every individual has different and unique physical, mental, and emotional characteristics, which comprise their constitution (Prakriti). This constitution, remains the same throughout one’s life and is determined at the time of conception by a number of factors.

To understand this better, we need to know three aspects:

  1. Pancha maha bhuta (Five fundamental elements)
  2. Sapta dhatu (Seven body tissues)
  3. TriDosha

Pancha maha bhuta (Five fundamental elements):

According to Ayurveda, the entire world and our bodies are made of ‘five fundamental elements’ called Pancha-Maha-Bhutas.

  1. Prithvi [Earth]: e.g. solid structures, such as bones, flesh, skin, tissues, and hair.
  2. Jal [Water]: e.g.  saliva, urine, semen, blood, and sweat.
  3. Agni [Fire]: e.g. digestive fire. It forms hunger, thirst, and sleep.
  4. Vaayu [Wind]: e.g. nerve impulse, blood flow, muscle contraction, secretion of glands (where there’s movement).
  5. Aakash [Space/Vacuum]: e.g. empty space in and around our organs, even at our cellular level!

Sapta-Dhatu:

  • Rasa Dhatu – Metabolic Juices and Plasma (The Digestive System)
  • Rakta Dhatu – Blood (Circulatory system)
  • Mamsa Dhatu – Muscles and Tendons (Muscular System)
  • Med Dhatu – Bodily Fat
  • Majja Dhatu – Bone Marrow
  • Asthi Dhatu – Bones (Skeletal System)
  • Shukra Dhatu – Seminal Fluids (Reproductive System)

TriDoshas (The Three Doshas):

  1. Vata
  2. Pitta
  3. Kapha

Five fundamental elements blend into physical form as these three Doshas.

  • Vata Dosha: Vaayu + Aakash
  • Pitta Dosha: Agni + Jal
  • Kapha Dosha: Jal + Prithvi

In all of us, any one or two of the three Doshas are the most dominant amongst them, which determines the basic or primary constitution or Prakriti of an individual. For an individual to remain healthy, there must be a harmony in these three basic substances (Doshas). Any kind of disharmony of these Doshas will lead to diseases, not just at the physical level but also at the mental and the emotional levels. All the bodily functions happen because all the three Doshas work in conjunction with each other throughout the body.

For instance, when our food is digested, nutrients and waste are produced. When the nutrients are assimilated, they nourish the seven bodily tissues (Sapta-Dhatu) and the waste is thrown out of the body through sweat, urine, feces, nasal discharge, eye discharge, etc.

To maintain the balance of these Doshas, Ayurveda recommends a disciplined lifestyle, which is called Dincharya. Because these three Doshas have their influence on our body in every particular few hours of the day, there is a Vata, Pitta and Kapha time of the day, and Vata, Pitta and Kapha time of the night.

  • Vata time: 2:00 am – 6:00 am & 2:00 pm – 6:00 pm
  • Kapha time: 6:00 am – 10:00 am & 6:00 pm – 10:00 pm
  • Pitta time: 10:00 am – 2:00 pm & 10:00 pm – 2:00 am

According to Ayurveda guidelines, one should always get up before sunrise. The scientific reason is 2:00 am – 6:00 am time of the day is governed by Vata element, which also governs the time of transition (when the night is turning into a day!). The morning Vata time is the phase where our receptivity is at the peak. Yogis and Rishis discovered long ago that this time of day, when air and ether are prominent, is the best time of the day for yoga, pranayama, meditation, prayer, chanting and other spiritual practices. Haven’t we heard the the best problem solving ideas blossom into one’s mind via intuition when one is meditating? Yes, this is the power!

However, at the same time, Vata is the Dosha of the movement, so it is very easy to get out of balance because of its delicacy.  Exposure to screen light (mobile or laptop) or bright lights, loud noise or even some negative thoughts; all of these have the power to unbalance our Vata Dosha. Avoid them all and choose some calm soothing and a peaceful environment! Grab your mat; do some yoga, pranayama, breathing exercises and meditate! Repeating affirmations can also calm down our aggravated Vata at this time.

After 6:00 am, when Kapha is prominent, (the water and earth energy), it is a bit heavy and sluggish. That is why it is not a great idea to wake up in this time if we want to feel energetic throughout the day. If we wake up in Kapha hours, chances are we may feel a little sleepy, even if our sleep quota is over, thanks to its heavy qualities.

(Try waking up in both Vata and Kapha durations on different days and you yourself will feel the difference!)

Kapha is the best time to get our heart pumped up with some exercises and start the first meal of our day – BREAKFAST that should be light and easy to digest.

Pitta is made up of fire and water, which makes it the Dosha of heat. It is dominant in our body when the Sun is at the highest in the sky, which is 10:00 am- 2:00 pm. It affects the heat of our bodies as well as of our minds. Pitta is related to productivity. It is best to have the biggest meal of the day i.e., Lunch, at Pitta dominant hours of the day. Because digestion is a fierce process which requires heat at its optimal performance.

As the cycle continues, again comes the Vata hours of the day 2:00 pm – 6:00 pm. As it is composed of air and ether, the light and etheric qualities of this time of day enhances our creativity and expansive thinking, making it a great opportunity to engage in some creative work and problem solving or analyzing.

From 6:00 pm to 10:00 pm, when Kapha becomes dominant, it is a great idea to wind up our day in these hours. We may eat light dinner, which is easy to digest.

By the time it is 10:00 pm, it is advisable that we begin our preparations for sleep. The heavy quality of Kapha help us to have a sound sleep easily, quickly and naturally! And for that , it’s very crucial that from 8:00 pm to 10:00 pm, our activities should be soothing and calming instead of those which are full of agitation such as, distressing conversations, violence in any form of fiction like TV shows/movie or novel, which can disturb our sleep. Instead, a light conversation with our family/ loved ones, a warm bath and a warm cup of milk with turmeric are some good ideas to add to our routine at this time.

As we move in the PITTA hours of the night, which is 10:00 pm to 2:00 am, it is very important that we are already in deep sleep so that the body cleansing and cell repair work which happen in our body, do not get disturbed. These cleansings happen at not only the physical level, but also at the emotional and the mental, and these cleansings are very much supported by a deep sleep.

As Pitta governs these hours, if we are not in bed before Pitta hours, we may feel hungry due to digestive fire and our trips to refrigerator may cost us ruined health! So let us sleep and let our body cleanse. If not, you will stay awake, eat, and obviously disturb the equilibrium of our body. Because if we eat at late hours, our body is confused, whether it shall digest the food we are eating now or it should cleanse our body.

Whatever our body has digested in Pitta hours, when there is a Vata time followed by Pitta time, that is 2:00 am, Vata would deliver the goods that Pitta has digested to various body parts because Vata is responsible for circulation and the movement. If we disturb these processes, then we may find ourselves up at midnight between 2:00 am to 6:00 am and find unable to go to sleep again, and then suddenly in Kapha hours from 6:00 am to 10:00 am, we may find ourselves asleep, only to wake up with groggy head because we slept in wrong hours! Therefore, it is always better to follow the rhythm of nature.

Another important aspect in Ayurveda is MITAHAR, meaning moderation in food. Meaning, we should never eat too much or too less. Let our hunger and appetite guide us. We should eat only when we are hungry. Always eat slowly and chew properly, so that the digestive enzymes present in our saliva mix with the food, and make it easier for us to digest the food. That is why it is said, the digestion begins with our mouth!

At the same time, pleasant and happy mindset helps in generating right amount of gastric juice. Under stress, anxiety, anger or any such negative emotional situations, our body perceives it as a threat.  The first thing body does is to stop producing these juices. As digestion is a heavy process, it shuts that down, instead starts sending blood to our muscles, our heartbeat increases, and we are ready to fight with which body has perceived as a dangerous threat!

If we eat at wrong hours, or whenever we are not hungry, because of the absence of gastric juices in our stomach, the food is not digested properly, and it turns into AAMA–toxins in the body. This AAMA is the main reason for various disease in the body. That is why Ayurveda puts a lot of emphasis on digestive system. If we eat right food at right time with right techniques and with right frame of mind, it is digested, assimilated and excreted well. So healthy bowel movements are important to remove major AAMA – toxins from the body.

For good digestion, water plays a very important role. We should always start our day with a glass of warm/room temperature water, to hydrate ourselves after 6-8 hours of sleep. We should always drink water BEFORE our meal and never immediately after our meals. Because water drunk immediately after meal dilutes the gastric juices, so they cannot digest the food efficiently. These residuals result in AAMA. Drinking water and eating meals should have sufficient gap before and after our meals. Drinking water at correct time in fact enhances the process of digestion. Too less water in our body may result in constipation or hard stool, which is difficult to pass.

Ayurveda has wonderful ways to cleanse AAMA from the body. One of them is FASTING. We can fast through various ways. Water fast, where we are just on water for certain amount of hours or days. It is considered as one of the extreme fasts and should be done under the supervision of an Ayurveda practitioner only. Other types are, fruit fasting, juice/liquid fasting, a fast which involves eating particular light foods like khichadi for certain days, etc. The main purpose of fasting is to give our body a break from digestion, because our body consumes a lot of energy in digestion, and if given a break, that energy can be used in cleaning the cells of the body and some major cell repair work. That is why some major disorders have been cured by this best therapy!

Ayurveda is a wonderful science and can greatly benefit every individual when learnt under a knowledgeable VAIDYA, but it is equally dangerous and can haphazardly damage if the principles are not applied properly. Now you know why the title of this article is Ayurved and Health.

— Dr Krushika Shalin Shah

Pic of the writer Krushika Shah

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Funny faces

Funny lines

  1. A cyclist is reported to have run away from the scene after colliding with a train and derailing three coaches. The only witness was the guard who reported the incident to a local hospital.
  2. A fire broke out in a pond near Olpad yesterday evening. The fish flew into the trees, and took shelter over there. The fire-fighters have been trying their best to put out the fire in the water.
  3. A man went to a bank to deposit money. While checking, the cashier found that those were the notes stolen from the bank a day before.
  4. A student reportedly killed about six teachers and the principal of his school on being asked to participate in the annual function.
  5. A two-seater plane crashed over a graveyard in Punjab. The rescue and relief team has already dug out ten bodies, and the search continues for more.
  6. About 700 people in the audience were found dead asleep while watching a dance performance. The organiser and the performing artists are likely to be arrested.
  7. An act of kindness at a bus depot. In a jam-packed bus, a kind-hearted driver offered his own seat to an elderly passenger. There’s no news about who drove the bus.
  8. Following the signs of a strong Indian economy, the rate of exchange stands like this: 1 rupee is equal to 80 US dollars. Many Americans are looking for jobs in India. Before they get a visa, they will have to pass a test, TOHIL, Test of Hindi as an International Language.
  9. In a test match on Vankhede stadium between India and Pakistan, the opening batsmen Sachin Tendulkar and Mahendra Dhoni remaind not-out for all the five days of the game. Sachin made 790 runs, whereas Dhoni made ten centuries and scored 1016 runs. The match was declared draw, and all the players of Pakistani team are in hospital.
  10. In Choksi Bazaar area, a wife beat her husband when he asked her to make a cup of tea at midnight. The neighbours rescued the husband and admitted him to the civil hospital. The husband’s condition is improving. The wife plans to serve him bed tea in the morning.
  11. The education department organized a written test for teachers. Out of a thousand teachers, 600 failed, 300 were found copying and the rest remained absent.
  12. The government has imposed a new tax based on one’s weight. The fat club members are planning to go to the court of law and appeal against this law. The judge is reportedly a member of that club.
  13. The local Mosquito Union has declared an indefinite strike to demand immediate removal of mosquito repellents—coils and electronic ones. The authorities are likely to consider their demand sympathetically.
  14. The police report arresting a cat barking at a dog at midnight. The frightened dog is admitted to the ICCU after a massive heart attack.
  15. The students in their birthday suit: A local school authorities had to declare a holiday when the students came to school stark naked following their teachers’ instruction the previous day to come without uniform.
  16. The Surat Municiple Corporation received a complaint from one Kanu Labha of Venus Apartments, Pal saying that his neighbors release mice in his house at night. The SMC has provided him with a cat. His neighbours now release a dog and mice.
  17. Yesterday a man wasn’t allowed to board a flight at Surat airport since he was carrying a bank passbook in place of his passport.
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Learn Spoken English at Home — DIY

Learn Spoken English at Home — Free

 

Dear English language learner,

 

Do you want to study English from the comfort of your home? Do you want to get good quality and interesting self-study material to improve your English?


“Well, yes, but how?” I hear you ask.


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Watch: There are many videos teaching various aspects of English such as grammar, vocabulary and pronunciation. They will make you feel you are sitting in a classroom or learning personally from an experienced teacher. Quite a few videos cover different nuances of English. And learning them will be fun and fruitful. By the way, some videos contain explanations in Hindi or Gujarati for beginner level learners. Some videos, especially those dealing with fundamental areas of English such as tenses, modals and conditionals, are available in Gujarati, Hindi and English.

 

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Study: Sometimes when you feel a little lazy but still want to use the time positively, this is the best section for you. Here we have prepared for you some presentations. You just need to go from one slide to the other and your grey matter will get lots of food for thought; I mean, language for communication.

 

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Do please share this information with your friends, family, and colleagues. Thank you.

 

Happy Learning, Happy Sharing!

 

Best wishes,

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Encouragement matters!

At times things are not as people want them to be. They want something but give up after trying for some time. In such cases, they need a lot of encouragement. You can use expressions such as the ones given below to encourage them and boost their morale.

 

  1. Well done.
  2. Keep it up.
  3. You are a hard worker, don’t give up.
  4. You have always passed with good marks. You’ll do well this time too.
  5. You must stick to your guns / decision.
  6. Look at the bright side of things.
  7. Act responsibly.
  8. You must not be sad.
  9. Be happy.
  10. Make a fresh start daily.
  11. Have confidence in your abilities.
  12. Always do right. You will not fall into trouble.
  13. Not everyone can do as much as you have done.
  14. Keep a win-win spirit.
  15. Believe in yourself.
  16. It’s how you look at things that matters.
  17. Be positive. Be optimistic. Always.
  18. Surround yourself with people who are optimistic.
  19. Remember: change is constant.
  20. Remember to be grateful for what you have.
  21. Look forward to a bright future.
  22. Every problem comes with a solution.
  23. You can play and win easily.
  24. It’s child’s play.
  25. Nobody succeeds without failing a few times.
  26. You are capable of great things.
  27. Count your blessings.
  28. Pray hard for answers to your problems.
  29. Make the most of each day.
  30. Face your problems bravely.
  31. Seek help when needed.
  32. Be your own motivation.
  33. Make a start and don’t stop till you reach your goal.
  34. Always be confident.
  35. Go ahead; you are doing well.
  36. I am with you all the way.
  37. I assure you of my total support.
  38. Don’t stop now. Actually try harder.
  39. We are praying for you.
  40. You have our full / financial / technical support.
  41. You have our moral support.
  42. Our whole family is with you… all the way.
  43. Do please let us know how we can help.
  44. Don’t lose hope.
  45. Don’t hesitate to ask for help of any kind.
  46. You are such a brave boy/girl.
  47. Be strong mentally and physically.
  48. We won’t let you fail / suffer.
  49. Be positive. Things will fall into place in due course of time.
  50. With him / her beside you, you will definitely feel encouraged.
  51. Come on, show your guts.
  52. Come on, show your mettle.
  53. Oh, you sing so nicely. Well done.
  54. Everything is going to be okay.
  55. Let’s have a pep talk.
  56. That was so nice of you.
  57. You have done such things earlier. Why not now?
  58. I encourage you to stand up and take up the challenge.
  59. Keep your head / chin up.
  60. Just be yourself.
  61. Time is a great healer.
  62. Put yourself in my place.
  63. It’s okay to cry. It makes you stronger, actually.
  64. We learn from our mistakes.
  65. It’s a time for change.
  66. Keep on smiling / laughing / trying.
  67. Discuss things frankly. Open your heart to people you trust.
  68. Don’t suffer in silence. Speak up.
  69. Say what you like. Don’t bottle up your feelings.
  70. Rise to the challenge.
  71. Show the world that you can deal with any situation successfully.
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