Ten Ayurvedic tips for a healthy New Year
Ayurveda, the science of life, has been followed as much for health management as for wellness and prevention of diseases. Ayurveda’s lifestyle principles have been validated by modern medical systems. Let us begin the New Year by following Ayurvedic practices, which can bring health and happiness to the individual and society.
New Year creates an enthusiasm that helps us move away from bad habits, improves lifestyle and drive us towards a new beginning.
Here, we discuss the important steps mentioned in the Dina Charya concept of Ayurveda, which advocates a daily regimen for healthy living. Principles related to the seasons, food and personal practices, and their health and psychological benefits have been modified to suit a modern lifestyle.
Eat on time: Ayurveda recommends a schedule for dining. Skipping breakfast or untimely lunch and dinner lead to derangement of digestion and metabolism leading to obesity, hypertension and other lifestyle disorders. Hence, the first New Year resolution should be to eat on time.
Get more exercise: The importance of physical movement in open air cannot be stressed enough. Unfortunately, we do not move out for physical exercises. Exercising indoors is not as effective as in the outdoors. Clinically, it is proven that outdoor exercises are very effective in calming the mind, improving lung capacity and more importantly providing motivation to continue with the exercise routine.
Focus on your food: This simple habit improves digestion and metabolism, and prevents unwanted accumulation of toxins. Do not watch TV while eating. And, never eat on the run, especially when you are travelling to work, driving, etc.
Drink plenty of water: Ayurveda recommends the drinking of as much as three litres of water a day depending on the season. Other systems of medicine also recommend adequate intake of water to aid in the removal of toxins and to nourish the tissues.
Include proteins in your diet: Get enough protein through cereals, milk products and chicken as part of a healthy diet.
Eat a fruit a day: Add one seasonal fruit a day to reduce seasonal deficiencies and disorders. Traditional and modern nutrition experts recommend fruits instead of juice.
Apply oil before a bath: One of the most effective remedies to detoxify is to massage with oil before the bath once a week. This improves blood circulation and slows down the ageing process.
Detoxify: Ayurveda recommend regular detoxifications at the end of seasons. This process helps the body to heal after every season, to drain out the toxins and improve the body’s healing abilities.
Get 10 minutes of yoga per day: Ayurveda recommends yoga and breathing exercises as a part of healthy living. Going one step ahead, Ayurveda suggests a personalized yogic approach based on seasons, age, health condition and nature of the person.
Include antioxidants: Get adequate nutrient supplements and antioxidants daily. This will improve physical and psychological well being.
Introduce these practices gradually and you’ll find them easier to follow.
Source: Dr Gowthaman, Medical Director, Dr Gowthaman’s Ayurveda Panchakarma Center, Chennai