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While you are having your meals, avoid sitting in front of the television or using your phone. According to the Ayurvedic philosophy, the food that is on your plate deserves the utmost attention and respect as it keeps you nourished and alive. Being conscious of what you eat allows your body to properly digest the food you have consumed. Chewing your food well and slowly helps your food break down better, since the digestive enzymes in your saliva have time to act upon the food. This also helps your metabolism work more efficiently.
The first thing you should consume just after waking up is a glass of lukewarm water. The warm water kicks off the metabolic process and aids in weight loss and muscle tone. This is a practice that has been passed down to us from ancient times and has been gaining popularity in the West in recent years. Have a breakfast that’s filling, but not heavy. Ayurveda suggests that different constitutions, or dosha types, should consume different types of food for breakfast. Vata types are recommended breakfasts that are warm and sweet.
Abhyanga is the Ayurvedic practice of massaging yourself with warm oil. It should ideally be done about half an hour before you take a bath. It is described as a way of giving your mind, body and spirit respect and nourishment for keeping you fit and healthy. It is a form of self-care that also improves your immune system. Abhyanga is also a great way to regularly check in with your body and understand your natural rhythms. You get to know yourself while keeping track of any changes, especially for older women.
Ayurveda recommends that you should start off your skincare routine by exfoliating. Mix some gram flour (besan) with a few teaspoons of water and make a thin paste. Apply it to your face and neck and massage it softly with the fingertips of your second, third and fourth fingers. This will gently get rid of the dead cells, while the besan gives you a fresh and clean feel. After exfoliating, put some rose water in a spray bottle and spritz to keep your face plump and moist. Lock in the hydration with some jojoba oil, which is very mild and anti-inflammatory.
The Ayurvedic philosophy for mental well-being is very closely linked with the schools of yoga and meditation. According to Ayurveda, the harmony of the soul and the body is critical for self-actualisation. But don’t let these words dissuade you. Meditation can be as simple as you make it. You can even practice it at any time of day that suits you. Just take some time out of your day to breathe deeply and be in tune with your thoughts and consciousness. Meditation combined with yoga can be effective for balancing pitta dosha.
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