I’d been hearing about that “stomach bug” for years and was thankful that our family hadn’t experienced it. Then last weekend, whilst I’ll spare you the gory details, my 3 year old contracted the bug from something she had eaten, picked up or caught… I remembered Justine had a simple pureed apple and spices recipe that she used for her family. Not only did it settle Sureya’s tummy bug, but it was so delicious, we’ve been adding it to our morning porridge ever since. This inspired me to ask both our Ayurvedic specialists- Daphne Ravey and Justine Rintoul, to help us with a few cures for common ailments.
Herbal tea for colds and flu
Dry roast 1 teaspoon of coriander seeds to release the flavour (approx 2min). Add 3 slices of ginger and 500mils of water; bring to the boil for 10min then strain and drink.
Viral stomach bugs
Peel two apples and then stew them until soft, add a teaspoon of ghee (or butter) a pinch of cardamom and a pinch of nutmeg. This works a treat!
A glass of coconut water will rehydrate you!
Eat some coriander leaves, as they are a natural antihistamine. Try my coriander chutney recipe here.
1 tsp of dandelion root (you find this in a health food shop)
1 teaspoon of fennel seeds
5-6 slices of ginger
3 cups of boiling water
steep for 5 min
click here to check out my post on 2 yoga poses for cleansing the liver.
Daphne chose to deal with insomnia and feeling run down.
According to Ayurveda, insomnia and other sleep related problems are associated with an aggravated Vata dosha. Vata is the air principle associated with movement, activity and fast moving thoughts. When Vata is aggravated, the nervous system suffers and we go into fight or flight stress response and can easily become chronically stressed and sleepless. This can lead to a whole array of health problems, both physical and psychological. It is no wonder that in our stressful, over stimulated lives so many people suffer from sleep disorders. In order to reduce Vata, it is important to slow down and reduce stress. Creating healthy sleep routines is crucial for this, including a screen free couple of hours before sleep. Dim the lights, burn relaxing essential oils such as lavender and sweet orange and have a warm bath or shower before sleep. Rubbing warm sesame oil on the feet and tummy using gentle clockwise circular strokes is also effective. Do some deep slow yogic breath and listen to a yoga nidra (deep yogic relaxation). You can play this track as you go to sleep in bed. You could try my Meditations for Inner Peace CD for this, available at Prana Space. If there are stressful issues going on in your life it may be helpful to seek the help of a counsellor, see an Ayurvedic practitioner for more specific herbal remedies and to have a regular Ayurvedic massage to soothe the nervous system and release stress from the body.
Evening sleep easy hot milk:
1 cup organic milk
1-2 cardamom pods opened and emptied into the milk
1 pinch nutmeg
Heat in saucepan until warm to hot.
Add honey to sweeten
Drink before bed time.
Feeling run down
It is easy to feel run down in our busy, stress-filled lives. During this time of year it is particularly common to be fighting off colds and flu as the predominant doshas are Vata (air) and Kapha (earth & Water)- both very cold in nature. In autumn and winter time eat warming foods such as root vegetables, soups and baked veges. Add heating spices such as ginger, black pepper and turmeric to increase immunity and stamina. Turmeric is a natural blood cleanser and immune tonic and due to its mild taste can be added to your cooking in every meal. Dress warmly and be sure to get enough exercise as well as rest. If your digestive fire is strong the body will naturally become healthy and you will feel energised and motivated. So avoid the temptations of the quick sugar fix which only causes your digestive fire to cool down even further and makes you feel even more sluggish. Cardamom is a special herb with rejuvenating properties, so I have added it to the tonic below.
Winter tonic tea:
4 cardamom pods opened and emptied into saucepan
2-4 black peppercorns (depending on personal tolerance)
1 cinnamon stick
3-4 slices fresh ginger
500ml filtered water
Heat all the ingredients to nearly boiling in covered saucepan for 20-30 min. Strain, add honey and organic milk to taste. Drink 2 cups every day.
You can make enough to last for 2-3 days and reheat on stove as needed.
Special thanks to Justine- http://triveda.com.au/
And Daphne is a holistic psychotherapist and Ayurvedic practitioner. She is also a yoga and meditation teacher with over 16 years experience. Daphne works in private practice and runs workshops on yoga, women’s health, fertility and spiritual growth. For more information please go to www.shaktibliss.com.au