Ayurvedic practices you should follow

by Sanjeev Kapoor

Ayurveda has been around for more than 5000 years and it is a holistic practice which is said to benefit everyone. The term ‘Ayurveda’ means ‘knowledge of life’ where ayur means life and veda means knowledge. It teaches how a person can maintain health and balance by following a few simple practices. There can be various factors that might lead to certain imbalances in life, like, physical stress, emotional instability, diet and food choices, mental disturbance and complex relationships. Once you have identified and understood the factor that causes the imbalance, you can nullify and minimize it in order to create a balance.

Ayurveda consists of 3 doshas and it is believed that these principles are present in everyone and everything. They are:

 

  • Vata: It is associated with the elements of space or air. It controls the motion of the body and the mind. When the person has a healthy vata, there is a controlled movement in their body.
  • Pitta: It reflects the qualities and elements of fire and water. It controls the metabolism, digestion, intellect and emotions in the body and mind. When the person has a balanced pitta, the person is more focused, confident and has a healthy stomach.
  • Kapha: This is the energy that forms the body structure and contains the elements of earth and water. It lubricates the joints and muscles, maintains the immune system and provides the ‘glue’ that holds all the body cells together.

 

Now that you know the fundamentals of Ayurveda, let’s know some practices which you should try and incorporate in your daily lives to achieve balance:

 

Eat right, eat light

According to Ayurveda, you must know when you are full and immediately stop eating, never over eat. Lunch should be the heaviest meal in the day and dinner should always be consumed before 8 PM and should be a considerably light meal. Eating a piece of ginger and lemon before the meal will help you balance pitta and make the digestion easier. Try and follow a sattvic diet which includes seasonal fruits, vegetables, nuts, seeds, dairy products, whole grains and lentils. Healthy food habits can help you cleanse from within and stay energetic.

 

Abhyanga is very helpful 

Abhyanga is a type of oil massage recommended by Ayurveda. It is suggested to be followed on a daily basis to heal the body and mind. It also relaxes the doshas, relieves stress, calms the mind and nourishes the skin. There are different organic oils recommended for all the 3 doshas. You should perform abhyanga before you take your morning bath.

 

Ideal ways of drinking water

Ayurveda has some principles to be followed for drinking water the right way. Never drink water while you are standing as it may imbalance the fluids in the body. Always drink water which is warm or room temperature as it aids digestion and promotes weight loss. Storing water in copper vessels helps in balancing the 3doshas of the body and one should try drinking water which is stored in a copper or silver vessel. Drink water slowly, take small sips and always drink water one hour after your meal.

 

 

Spices are therapeutic

Indian spices not just add flavour to dishes but also contain healing benefits. Turmeric contains curcumin which is a natural anti-inflammatory compound, cinnamon is loaded with antibacterial and antioxidant properties, ginger can aid proper digestion. Similarly, all the good-ol’ spices we have been using from the masala dabbas in our kitchen are said to be magical with their therapeutic properties. No wonder the kaadhas made by our mothers work better than any other medicine, till date.

 

Meditate and exercise

One of the most important principles in Ayurveda says that the movement of the body has a direct relationship with the mind. Hence, when you exercise or mediate even for the shortest span possible, you will see a decrease in your stress levels and becoming more enthusiastic. It says moving the body regularly is very important. Physical exercise and meditation should be done on a daily basis. Everyone has their own definition of fitness, so people can choose whatever they enjoy doing.

 

 

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MasterChef Sanjeev Kapoor

Chef Sanjeev Kapoor is the most celebrated face of Indian cuisine. He is Chef extraordinaire, runs a successful TV Channel FoodFood, hosted Khana Khazana cookery show on television for more than 17 years, author of 150+ best selling cookbooks, restaurateur and winner of several culinary awards. He is living his dream of making Indian cuisine the number one in the world and empowering women through power of cooking to become self sufficient. His recipe portal www.sanjeevkapoor.com is a complete cookery manual with a compendium of more than 10,000 tried & tested recipes, videos, articles, tips & trivia and a wealth of information on the art and craft of cooking in both English and Hindi.