“Prevention is better than cure.”
Ayurveda offers valuable information and advice on improving immunity and preventing illness.
Ayurveda, Digestion and Immunity
Ayurveda is all about keeping a harmonious balance of body, mind and soul. To keep this balance on a day to day today basis, it’s important to have a good digestive system. If digestion is not good, one can accumulate toxins in the body. Built up toxins weaken the immune system, which causes the body to become susceptible to infections.
Here are some tips to keep your digestion working effectively and efficiently:
Drink warm water
Drink warm water all day long to cleanse ama (toxins). Drinking warm or hot water keeps you hydrated and viruses won’t likely survive in warm temperature (although this doesn’t mean that it kills viruses).
Eat warm, light, fresh and nutritious food
Eat warm, light, fresh and nutritious food that can be digested well. In Ayurveda, this type of food is called satvik food. Avoid processed, cold, heavy, and fried food. Drink hot teas with turmeric, ginger, black pepper, holy basil, cardamom and honey.
Stress and Immunity
It’s important to note that there is a strong correlation between stress and immunity. When you are stressed or anxious, your body releases corticosteroids, which suppress the immune system and reduce your ability to fight off antigens. Stress also interferes with digestion, causing a build up of ama. That’s why it’s important to reduce stress and practice stress relieving techniques daily.
Other Ayurveda Tips for Illness Prevention
Use spices for prevention and healing
- Ginger: Ginger contains gingerol, which has powerful medicinal properties. It helps in healthy digestion, boosting metabolism, easing the common cold, cough, and respiratory imbalances, reducing pain, and decreasing inflammation.
- Black Pepper: Black pepper is a very common and versatile spice. It helps in digestion, is high in antioxidants, and is used in pacifying excess kapha in the body.
- Turmeric: Turmeric is a golden spice. It contains curcumin, is naturally anti-inflammatory, anti-bacterial, and an antioxidant. It should be used with black pepper and ginger for proper digestion and absorption. You can use it in the form of tea or in soups and khichari.
- Holy Basil or Tulasi: Holy Basil is called ‘natural mother herb’ in Ayurveda. It is a sacred plant in Indian tradition. It is from the basil family and has many health benefits. It is antibacterial, anti-fungal, antioxidant, anti-inflammatory and relieves cough. Tulsi teas are widely available.
- Ashwagandha: Ashwagandha is an important herb for balancing immunity, stress, anxiety, pain, and reducing inflammation.
- Rasayanas: Rasayanas are Ayurvedic formulations made from herbs and spices that improve general health and wellness.
Follow a daily regimen and sleep cycle
Follow a dinacharya (daily routine) and a regular sleep cycle, and be sure to get sufficient rest.
Wash your hands frequently
Clean up to the elbows after you come home from outside. Instead of shaking hands, put hands together for Namaste.
Get fresh air
It is good for the body, mind and spirit to be outdoors in fresh air.
Do deep breathing exercises and use neti pot for nasal cleansing
You can also practice nasya (nasal drops) to strengthen and rejuvenate the respiratory system.
Gargle with warm salt water
Gargling with warm salt water and eucalyptus or camphor oil helps to soothe a sore throat.
Sun Salutations are good yoga asanas to improve breathing and the immune system. It is important to have a strong mind. Being happy and having a strong mind helps you deal with difficult situations and stops you from becoming panicked.
May you all gain strong immunity by following Ayurvedic tips and stay well, stay healthy.
Ayurveda and Healthcare Business Consultant