Winter Health TIPS from AYURVEDA

 It’s the time of the year when people get sick…whether it’s a common cold, the flu, or Covid.

We all know that strong immunity is necessary to fight any foreign body or disease. The best way to protect yourself and your loved ones from catching viruses in the "season of viruses" is to bolster and maintain a robust immune system.

Tips from Ayurveda

  1. EAT HEALTHY - Foods like cheese, yogurt, and sauerkraut support gut microbial immunity and keep you healthy. In addition, food items like black pepper, coriander seeds, garlic, ginger, oranges, broccoli, sprouts, lemons, and strawberries can help keep your immunity up. In Ayurveda, good digestion or strong digestive fire is vital in fighting disease.

    Avoid cold, sweet, and fried - Drinking or eating cold foods reduces the digestive fire, which is not great for your overall health. Heavy and fried foods are difficult to digest, so avoid them. Enjoy sweet root vegetables, broths, and soups.

  2.  HYDRATE - Staying hydrated is KEY to washing toxins out of the body. Drink 2-4 cups of warm water (I like a squeeze of lemon) first thing in the morning to flush the body and promote a bowel movement. Then, sip warm or hot water throughout the day (every 15 min.) to keep the mouth and throat moist and flushing toxins.


    • Chyawanprash - According to Ayurveda experts, eating a tablespoon of chyawanprash daily enhances immunity, and it may help prevent the spread of the virus. It tastes great, and kids love it! Coronavirus primarily affects the lungs and the respiratory system.

    Click HERE for my favorite from Banyan.

    • Tulsi (holy basil) - Basil is a traditional Indian herb with excellent medicinal and therapeutic benefits. Basil contains strong expectorant and antitussive properties, which work from the root to remove phlegm and irritants and suppress the cough, thereby treating chronic respiratory problems. Tulsi water also contains several anti-allergic and anti-inflammatory properties that can handle colds and related infections. Click HERE for my favorite tablets from Banyan.

    • Tumeric (fresh or powder)- boosts the immune system and supports digestion. I add it fresh to smoothies and sprinkle the powder on roasted veggies, salads, and soups. The more, the merrier.

    (Banyan Botanicals is my favorite one-stop shop for most of my Ayurvedic needs. I love that they offer a seasonal "Respiratory Immune Support Bundle," the best herbs and natural ingredients to support your immune system - and those you love. Click HERE to check it out) 

    2. SLEEP - is the best medicine ever. When our body is in restNOT digest mode, it can do what it's designed to do: "clean house." Eating an early and/or lighter dinner is best so that our body can detoxify, regenerate, and rebuild when we are asleep (Btwn. the hours of 10 pm - 2 am. ideally). 

    One of the most harmful things we can do to our bodies is not getting enough quality sleep. Another critical process when you sleep is that your body produces essential immuno-proteins called cytokines, which act as infection-fighting antibodies necessary to keep the body healthy - you need be sleeping for this to happen.

    3. SELF-MASSAGE, called abhyanga in Ayurveda, calms the nervous system, reduces stress, and supports immunity. A base oil like cold-pressed, organic sesame oil is perfect for most bodies this time of year. Click HERE for my favorite oil from Banyan.

    Adding essential oils is a bonus. I recommend essential oils such as frankincense, lavender, clary sage, ylang-ylang, bergamot, jasmine, and basil to calm the nervous system and manage stress.

    Take warm baths in the evening - Epsom salts and warming essential oils like ginger, cardamom, eucalyptus, rosemary, cinnamon, cedar, pine, basil, and juniper is another lovely way to calm down the nervous system, relax and melt away the tension of the day, and CNN.

    4. MEDITATION doesn't just help calm the mind and center your chakras, but it also minimizes several risk factors associated with an impaired immune system, i.e. reduced blood pressure, better function, and strengthened immunity. Regular mindful meditation practices can help the mind send the right messages to the body and act accordingly. It also helps fight oxidative stress, which again takes a damper on your immune system

    5. PRANYAMA — Deep conscious breathing through the nostrils increases levels of Nitric Oxide in the body. This is a crucial factor in the destruction of viruses and parasitic organisms. Therefore, also teaching kids to breathe in through the nose and out through the nose protects against viruses.

    6. YOGA- Inverted yoga poses increase lymph circulation and drains germs from your body. For example, when your head is below your heart - uttanasana (standing forward bend) or sarvangasana (shoulderstand), the lymph moves into the respiratory organs, where germs often enter the body. When you return to an upright position, gravity drains the lymph and sends it through your lymph nodes for cleansing.

    7. NASYA is a therapeutic treatment for the nose, throat, sinuses, and head and can be done by simply putting two to three drops of sesame oil in each nostril and sniffing it in. This will lubricate the nasal passage and throat and strengthen the inner mucus membrane to keep away foreign bodies. If you don’t have a dropper, use, a Q-tip soaked in oil and swab the nose lining generously.
    Click HERE for my favorite Nasya Oil from Banyon. 

    8. WASH HANDS - According to the World Health Organization (WHO), the most effective way to protect yourself against coronavirus is by frequently cleaning your hands with alcohol-based hand rub or washing them with soap and water.

    9. DETOXIFY/ CLEANSE - One of the best ways to support your body in doing what it naturally does is to clear out the toxins that keep it from doing its job. When the body is exhausted, poorly nourished, stressed out, stagnant, and digesting food all day long, it cannot operate optimally. Simple as that!

    Over the holidays, allow at least one day/ week to be primarily liquids - soups, juices, and smoothies. Give your digestion time to rest. Spacing your meals, a.k.a intermittent fasting, is a beautiful way to give the body time and space between meals to tend to it’s deeper job of cleansing, healing, and building your immunity.

    One last thing…

    All these daily habits and awareness of what to help and support you are KEY to safeguarding yourself and your family against ALL viruses. However, it’s also essential to look at what is NOT supporting us that may need addressing.

    For example:

    • Not managing stress daily ie, lack of exercise, quiet time, meditation, enjoying nature.

    • Eating processed, fast foods, refined alcohol, sugar, and nutritiously “dead foods.”

    • Burning the candle on both ends- getting less than 7-8 hours of sleep for adults and 8-10 for teens and kids.

    • Not practicing proper hygiene.

    • Eating late and heavy at night (close the kitchen at least 2-3 hours before bedtime).

    Tea Recipes to Boost Immunity

    3- Ingredient Ayurvedic Tea
    Ginger Cinnamon Ayurvedic Tea

    Fennel Licorice Ayurvedic Tea
    Ayurvedic Immunity Tea
    Ginger Tumeric Immune Boosting Te

    Stay well!