When the weather becomes colder and windy (Autumn), it sets the scene for an increase in respiratory discomfort. Coughs, colds, bronchitis, asthma and in the extreme pneumonia become more prevalent. Other more chronic conditions such as chronic obstructive pulmonary disease and emphysema may become aggravated. This can increase the demand on the national health care services, especially with the elderly.
The Winter solstice on 22nd December is nearly here signalling the start of Winter. Over the next 3-4 weeks nature guides us to be aware of Ritu Sandhi - the cleansing gap between two seasons. Autumn seems to have flown by! With this change of season comes a special opportunity to move with the rhythms of nature in order to enjoy a healthy and happy winter season ahead. Here’s what you can do.
There is a story in the Ayurvedic tradition that thousands of years ago a great gathering of leading Ayurveda experts or Vaidyas met together to decide which single health strategy was the most widely effective. Panchakarma treatment came out on top, as it seemed to be useful for pretty much any health conditions. Panchakarma is often translated as rejuvenation therapy and its [...]
Out of the thousands or herbs and herbal preparations in Ayurvedic pharmacopeia there are some that have gained fame and popularity. Let’s have a look at six of Ayurveda’s most popular herbals. Triphala Rose The world’s biggest selling Ayurvedic herbal is Triphala. Triphala is known as a bowel tonic and its supports digestion and regular bowel movements. Three fruits are combined in Triphala to create [...]
In the environment, major changes occur when winter turns into spring. As the forces of nature change externally, those same forces present within your body are now ready and willing to help you both purify and renew. Cycling through the year and through your life The cycle of the year represents the cycle of life: January through to May is the Kapha [...]
Transcript of video by Dr Donn Brennan: The earliest signs of ageing are described quite beautifully in Sharngadhara, one of the old texts of Ayurveda. I'll read you the quote. It says, “With each passing decade, the body loses, one by one, childhood, growth, lustre and complexion, intelligence, skin health, strength of sight, virility, valour, discrimination, the use of the organs of action, the use of the [...]
Blissful sleep for better health with Ayurveda (video + transcript) GalleryAnxiety, Brain, Consciousness, Detox, Digestion, Dr Donn Brennan videos, Drinks, Emotions, Fatigue, Food, Heart, Kapha, Meditation, Mind, Obesity, Pitta, Sleep, Stress, Vata, Weightloss
In truth, we need more sleep than we think we need. All the research is pointing to a minimum of eight hours sleep that people actually need for the work that the brain needs to do overnight to be accomplished. Less sleep leaves us less capable, even if we don’t know it. Even an hour’s lack of sleep [each night] over a 10-day period leaves us as incompetent and incapable cognitively, as if we had missed a whole night’s sleep for one night. The only difference is we don’t recognise it. We don’t know it.
Dr Charlotte Bech Charlotte Bech graduated as a medical doctor from the University of Copenhagen. After becoming a teacher of Transcendental Meditation (TM) in 1983, she trained in Maharishi AyurVeda in 1986. Charlotte is currently running a private clinic in Copenhagen Denmark, integrating modern medicine and Maharishi AyurVeda. She has taught TM to more than 1000 people, has given more than 30,000 Ayurvedic consultations and has created and [...]
I first learned about internal cleansing when, as a teenager, I developed an interest in self-development. I picked up a book called Hatha Yoga, in which the author described how in North India, people noticed the strange cleansing habits of a certain species of migrating bird.After travelling thousands of miles, the exhausted and bedraggled birds would land near lakes and rivers and, after taking in water, would insert [...]
Why do we often crave the sweet taste? What effect does sugar have on our body and on our Doshas? Why is fructose such a baddie? What are the most natural ways to satisfy our desire for sweet things? Dr Donn Brennan gives an Ayurvedic perspective on sugar and other sweet foods. Peter Brown: There is a lot of sugar in the foods we eat. Can [...]
There are so many detox treatments on the market these days that a question can arise: “How is Panchakarma detoxification treatment different from all these other treatments that promise to remove my toxins”. Below is a transcript of the above video in which Ayurveda practitioner, Dr Donn Brennan, explains how the expert use of specific oils is central to the effectiveness of Panchakarma in cleansing the [...]
The concept of the three Doshas – Vata, Pitta and Kapha – is most people’s route into understanding Ayurveda. It’s easy to grasp how Vata Dosha can be responsible for all movement, Pitta for all transformations and Kapha for all structure in our body and the world around us. But there is a deeper level of this understanding though and the three Doshas have their root or master [...]
From the Ayurvedic viewpoint, interesting things happen within your body as winter gives way to spring and then spring give way to summer. As spring progresses, the cold, slow, heavy and sticky qualities of Kapha Dosha, that build up during late winter, gradually melt away and this often results in the chest colds and runny noses common in March, April and May. Springtime supports the body’s natural elimination [...]
It’s freezing outside. You shiver and get goose-pimples. The pores and blood vessels in your skin shrink and contract to preserve the body’s heat within its core. Your body changes and adapts during cold weather and Agni (digestive fire) increases to give you a stronger appetite. The extra food you are able to take in, helps you generate more heat.
I run courses on Maharishi AyurVeda, food and cooking and one frequently asked question is, “What’s the best oil to cook with?”. I respond that my favourite cooking oils are ghee, coconut oil and olive oil*, in that order. There is no controversy surrounding olive oil – after all, haven’t there been lots of TV ads implying that perpetual youth and vitality are almost guaranteed through consuming it? [...]
January heralds the start of the Kapha season, and its cold, dull, damp and heavy weather tends to increase Kapha within the body. We often think of winter as a time for Kapha-associated diseases, such as colds and flu, yet Ayurveda maintains that winter is not weakening but strengthening, and the best season to improve your immunity. Bala is the term Ayurveda uses for immunity and general strength, whether [...]
In the UK, and most of Europe, January signals the start of the Kapha season; the time of year that increases the cold, wet and heavy Kapha qualities in our body. To stay healthy during late winter and spring, balance the influence of Kapha by adjusting your diet. The colour, aroma and taste of this Kapha-reducing meal is warming. Chickpeas are very nutritious but can take time to [...]
Ayurveda considers Ojas to be the finest material substance in your body – as much in the realm of consciousness as it is in the realm of matter. Maharishi Mahesh Yogi, the founder of Transcendental Meditation and Maharishi AyurVeda, said that Ojas is a ‘lamp at the door’ – the junction point between consciousness and matter – lighting both inside and outside. Because of its role as a link [...]
Ginger Apple Crisp A tasty and easily digested desert. The recipe requires a 5 inch x 9 inch x 3 inch deep tray. If your own tray is either larger or smaller, proportionally adjust the quantity of each ingredient. 3 medium sized apples, peeled, seeded and chopped Fresh juice of 1 lemon or lime 1 tbsp of finely grated ginger 1 [...]
There are so many edible delights on offer over Christmas that it is hard not to over-indulge and accumulate Ama, the toxic waste-product of incomplete digestion. Festive meals and an abundance of tempting sweets can lead you to over-eat and snack at irregular times, and promote the build-up of Ama. If this process is left unchecked, your body can becomes clogged [...]
“Maharishi AyurVeda would like us to express our innate source which is infinite vitality and energy” – Dr Donn BrennanHow much energy and vitality you have in your body and mind is closely linked to the strength of your immune system. When vitality is weak, immunity is correspondingly low. When energy levels are strong and free-flowing, illness has little chance of taking hold.The [...]
Triphala is a highly revered formula in Ayurveda and is available from Maharishi AyurVeda as Triphala Rose. Triphala means ‘three fruits’ – Amalaki, Bibhitaki and Haritaki. When combined as Triphala their complimentary and synergistic effect forms a very powerful Rasayana. Rasayana is the Ayurvedic terms for any herbal combination that enlivens the inner intelligence of mind and body from a fundamental level, promoting [...]
The Ayurvedic theory of immunity is called Beej-bhumi, which literally translates as “seed and land”. The body is seen as the fertile land in which infections or harmful “bugs” can grow. If our body is out of balance, and full of Ama – the toxic by-products that result from incomplete digestion – viruses and harmful bacteria will find fertile soil for [...]
“Balanced weight is the automatic by-product of enjoying the state of good health that is our natural birthright.” This is the message of Dr Donn Brennan, leading expert on Maharishi AyurVeda and founding president of the Ayurvedic Practitioners Association of Great Britain. He explains that it’s a question of attaining the balance of mind and body that comes when the innate inner [...]
Peter Brown: The biggest selling herbal within Maharishi AyurVeda, and probably within Ayurveda as a whole, is called Triphala, which means three fruits. What is the purpose of Triphala? What is it good for? Dr Donn Brennan: Triphala is, as you say, probably the most common Ayurveda herbal used in the world – considering the population of India and the global reach of Ayurveda. This herbal has so many good properties. [...]
It often seems that the more modern science learns about food, digestion and how we are affected by natural cycles, the more it confirms the understanding of the ancient science of Ayurveda. The following article, written by Dr Allana Polo and published in GreenMedInfo, highlights a recent study, which suggests that eating late may have a detrimental effect on our health. Could late night snacks [...]
We have new video series on Maharishi AyurVeda with Dr Donn Brennan. This is just the beginning and over the next few months many more videos, full of Ayurvedic health wisdom, will be put up on our site. Introductory videos In some videos Donn introduces basic concepts, such as what is Ayurveda’s approach to health, why Maharishi helped to revive this ancient science, what are the Ayurvedic body-types, how your can recognise [...]
Winter is the Kapha season when the weather is cold and wet and the Vata season of when it is cold and windy. At times the Vata moving element can dominate our physiology and at other times the stable and cohesive Kapha can get the better of us. How do we keep in balanced with all the challenges our changeable weather imposes on us? Also, how [...]