Plant Based Diet


Share this :   | | | |

1163951485-14858-0

 

The Basics of Ayurveda for Big Results :::

 

Plant Based Diet

 

Why:

 

Plants are a living, prana- rich gift from the earth. Living plants are literally full of consciousness. When we eat simple, plant based foods (rather than food from a box, processed, or other wise altered) we are taking in more life-force energy to shine brighter.  We become more sattvic.

 

Non plant-based foods (the items from the middle isles in the grocery store) are harder for our body to assimilate. They are less natural, more foreign. They have been altered from their natural plant state and are no longer easy for our body to recognize, process, and make healthy tissue from. These frozen dinners, pastas, soy – protein isolate type things get stuck and muck-up our body. They create ama.

 

Eat fresh to feel fresh. Connect to the earth through the natural foods you eat.

 

How:

 

Eat simple. Eat plants.

 

This is literally the most basic approach to an Ayurvedic diet. And it packs a BANG.

 

How can you add in more plants?

  • make a smoothie, fresh juice, or have some fruit for breakfast
  • have a piece of fruit for a snack, instead of a granola bar (or whatever you usually have)
  • add an extra veggie to your plate at any or all meals
  • notice what part of the plant you are eating, and how it impacts you
  • notice where your plants came from
  • notice the plants naturally growing around you. lovingly harvest the ones you are drawn to, and enjoy

 

As you continue to upgrade, you’ll continue to feel more energy, more vibrancy, clarity and strength.

 

Some fun and easy websites to get you started with recipes and wild harvesting:

 

Kris Karr — vegan and fresh.

Detoxinista — a little more fancy and flash.

Wild Edibles — what to eat from your ecosystem for ultimate bang.

 

If you want to go deeper in this conversation, you’ll want to be a part of my 10 week Ayurveda course Soul Body Bliss. We take this conversation further, and you go further into your journey of health and feeling awesome.

 

{ Art:  Fruits – Alphonse Mucha }

Breath Body Practice


Share this :   | | | |

 

mucha_dance

 

 

The Basics of Ayurveda for Big Results ::: 

 

Breath Body Practice

 

Why:

Move your body to breathe deep. Moving and breathing deep moves out the old and wakes up each cell with prana (vital life- force energy.)

 

Moving, breathing deep, taking in fresh prana creates connectivity in your whole system. A connected body is a more intelligent body. Greater intelligence yields greater choices throughout the day.

 

Exercise, especially before eating, moves, clears and cleanses the lymphatic system, also known as rasa dhatu. A clear and healthy lymph system helps you feel clear and healthy.

 

Breathing deep and moving before breakfast feels amazing! You feel fresh, alive, open, energized and keyed up. It truly is a healthy addiction. Start this habit now, and after a regular practice you won’t want to miss it. The day you don’t move, you’ll simply feel ‘off’ and you’ll dive back in.

 

How:

 

Move your body and breathe deep!

 

Dance, do yoga, go for a walk or jog, lift weights, pranayama, do an exercise video… anything to get you moving and breathing, to take in some fresh prana, before you eat.

 

Whatever sounds good to your body, go for it. Move from your body (not your head) and keep the movement of prana happening with deep breaths. Start with 5 minutes a day, everyday, and slowly work up to 20 or 30 minutes. Make breath your first meal of the day.

 

I like to do about 5- 10 sun salutations and then go into some deeper stretching or dance for 5 minutes, depending how I feel. My main or longer exercise routine I save for later in the day, but you could just as well do your main exercise before breakfast.

 

 

If you love these tips and are ready for more Ayurveda, to dive deeper, check out my 10 week course Soul Body Bliss. 

Happy Breathing 🙂

{ Art : Dance by Alphonse Mucha }

Your Morning Routine


Share this :   | | | |

64a38ebd766f16e772497812e096f94c-1

 

The Basics of Ayurveda for Big Results ::: 

 

Your Morning Routine 

 

Why:

 

Start your day right to prime yourself optimally for the day ahead.

 

When you take an extra 5, 20, or 50 minutes to care for yourself in the morning you are priming yourself up for  an optimal day. Connect the physical body, energy body, intellect and soul for a wholly integrated and more intelligent self to step into the day, each and every day.

 

And honestly, a good morning routine is fun and feels awesome. It’s addictive.

 

How:

 

Wake up and give thanks. Feel into the precious gift of a human life on earth with gratitude.

 

Let go of all waste (pee, poop, plaque in the mouth, eye crusties, etc…) (If you don’t poop every morning without caffeine you can and need to change that!)

 

Flush your channels with hot or room temp water (add lemon for extra alkalinity).

 

Move your body and take big breaths for 5-30 minutes before you eat. Have oxygen as your first meal of the day. Draw fresh prana (vital life force energy) into each and every cell of your body to truly wake up and revitalize.

 

Sit in silence. Expand into your eternal nature.

 

Enjoy a simple, fresh breakfast.

 

If this tip is helpful for you, click here to learn more and go deeper with my Ayurveda Course.

 

{ Art :  Times of Day Series – Morning Awakening, Alphonse Mucha }

Early to Bed


Share this :   | | | |

6bf44705c6d5c83881f507fc76df31f9

 

 

 

The Basics of Ayurveda for Big Results ::: 

 

Go to sleep early. 

 

Why:

 

When it’s dark out, we’re meant to sleep. This includes winding down, chilling out, and relaxing after the sun starts to go down. Rest, relaxation, and straight up making time to kick back and enjoy life is important for our health.

 

A sweet, lovely evening of relaxing or having fun helps to build ojas – the refined nectar that holds our prana (vital life force energy). Relaxing in the evening builds a strong immunity. It helps you flow into an easy bedtime ritual and fall asleep easily. It supports your deeper rest and nourishment, to wake up with the sun and shine bright.

 

How:

 

Quit ‘burning the candle at both ends.’ Put away your work early. Don’t over-book yourself. Schedule in some chill time after dinner.

 

Start noticing when you get tired and honor that – don’t push through it.

 

Create a simple and nourishing evening ritual for yourself and get into bed a little earlier. Slowly, over time, you will get more rested and wake up earlier. But first the emphasis is on getting rested.

 

If this tip is helpful for you, click here to learn more and go deeper with my Ayurveda Course.

 

Take care.

 

{ ART : ‘Repos de Nuit’ (Night’s Rest) from the Times of Day series.  – Alphonse Mucha }

Earlier, Lighter Dinner


Share this :   | | | |

mucha-monaco-2

 

 

The Basics of Ayurveda for Big Results :::

 

Eat an early, light dinner. 

 

Why:

 

Our digestive fire is the strongest in the middle of the day. We can break down our food and create strong, healthy tissues when we have lunch as the biggest meal of the day.

 

An early, light dinner that is easy to digest is easier on the digestive system. Secondly, our metabolism kicks up from 10pm-2am. If our main fire in the gut isn’t over-loaded, the body can direct its energy on these “little fires” throughout the cells, tissues and organs. The liver especially wants to cleanse and detox at this time. The result: you prevent ama (toxins) from building up and instead you are regularly “cleaning house” every night while you sleep.

 

You will wake up more clear, light, and fresh. Little ailments like inflammation, allergies, mucous, grogginess, crabbiness, achy joints, etc will naturally start to disseminate.

 

How:

 

Start making your dinner earlier, or lighter.

 

Move dinner forward by 10 minutes a week until you’re eating your last meal before the sun goes down (ideally).

 

You can also, slowly, take out heavier or harder to digest items and add them to your lunch. Proteins, fats, heartier or ‘fancier’ meals are easier to digest when our digestion is strong.

 

Light dinners are: more vegetable based, salads, soups, one-pot meals, simple and easy.

 

Remember that a little change, slowly, consistently over time, can make a huge difference and be more likely for you to maintain.

 

If this tip is helpful for you, click here to learn more and go deeper with my Ayurveda Course.

 

{Art: Alphonse Mucha}

Dark Nights


Share this :   | | | |

La Primevere et La Plume, 1899 Alphonse Mucha Detail

 

Winter is the vata time of year. The weather is colder, windier, drier. The nights are long, the days are short.

 

Winter is time for more yin energy: quiet, inward, reflective, nourishing, calming, dark, slow, stable and tranquil.

 

The cold, dark nights are guiding us inside ~ within our homes and within ourselves.

 

This inward pull of energy draws us into our inner realms; our quiet, reflective nature. From this naturally meditative state, we are more easily able to rest in a state of being, to relax and experience more of our intuitive, emotionally sensitive and psychic energies.

 

More simply, winter is an important time to rest, nourish and repair.

 

The more we can ebb inward at this time and get the deeper sleep our body needs, the more able we are to flow outward during the brighter, longer days of summer.

 

Having an easy and relaxing evening, going to bed early, getting lots of deep rest, eating high quality oils and yin- nourishing foods all helps to repair and strengthen the nervous system during these darker days to keep you at your best in the big picture.

 

Some basic ways to take the best care of yourself from now until spring include:

  1. Have a relaxing, easy, fun and sweet evening at home. Avoid working or doing too much in the evenings, especially going out often in the winter nights.
  2. Go to bed early. Really early. Listen for when your body/mind is asking you to turn in. Turn off the tv/ computer/ i-pad and see when you really get tired. If you’re a “night owl” you can train yourself otherwise. If you’re busy and still have a lot of things to do, it’s better to get them done in the early morning than evening.
  3. Eat more healthy fats to nourish and strengthen the nervous system: nuts, seeds, healthy oils, avocado, ghee, etc are all great options.
  4. Eat seasonally: warm soups and stews, warm grains/ cereals, warming spices, herbal teas, grounding winter veggies – beets, carrots, turnips, potatoes, squashes, etc.
  5. Practice a daily ritual of massaging oil into your skin (abhyanga). Each day, either before or after you bathe or just before going to bed, massage an unrefined, organic oil into your skin. This amazing self care practice really soothes, strengthens and nourishes the skin and entire nervous system.
  6. Make time for meditation, preferably each morning around sunrise. If you already have a regular practice, inquire into how it can serve you more. If you don’t, click here to learn more about creating one.
  7. Rest in silence. Find time to be with yourself, in solitude. See what arises or doesn’t. Let what otherwise has been hidden or unseen be seen, felt, heard, healed and released. Create room for your more quiet nature to emerge and let any insights, dreams and visions come to you. Feel into your more subtle nature to experience your natural intuitive and psychic capabilities.

 

 

Make Room For Spirit


Share this :   | | | |

9bac3e8bf5f3a8865b7c05239f550a01

 

 

Naturally increasing our sacred awareness and energy with one of the most empowering and essential elements of who we are: our spirit, allows one of the most basic and fundamental parts of who we are to expand. Giving more space and energy to our boundless nature of supreme nothingness and bliss, magically, enhances all other aspects of who we are.

 

 

My three main suggestions to ‘make more room for spirit’:

 

 

1. Make the time.

  • Everyday, for five, ten, thirty minutes or more, sit in silence, meditation or a quiet reflective state. If possible, you can even meditate during the early morning hours just before sunrise, known as Brahma-Muhurtam, the most peaceful and spiritual time of day.
  • Dedicate one day a week (or month) to have extra time for your spiritual practice and cultivating more inner awareness. I love ‘super soul sacred Sundays’ and take part in satsang from 7 am – noon, then go on a lovely long walk in the hills, and have a relaxing and quiet evening at home. Maybe you connect with your sangha that day and practice what’s sacred for you.
  • Schedule a retreat. Perhaps it’s a dedicated meditation or spiritual retreat at a destination location or in your home, maybe a camping trip to a special land,  a trip you take that is set with special intentions, or even a get-away to a quiet cabin. When it’s important to you, you can make the time, even if you have to schedule it far in advance.
  • Every single moment of every single day is the perfect time to be with spirit. When you first wake up and lay in bed, while you brush your teeth, as you sip your warm morning beverage, washing up dishes, driving your car, stuck in traffic, working, conversing with others… Every moment of everyday we can presence into the awareness of what gives us life within. The more often we experience the spaciousness within, the more frequent and natural it becomes to rest in spirit, rather than the mind.

 

2. Get in Your Zone.

  • Practice what is special for you and encourages your connection to source. I love being in nature. Creating art, yantras, mantras, yoga, being present with animals, bonsai, cooking, writing poetry, dancing, staring into someones eyes, deeply listening… whatever brings you deeper into the space of your heart — do more of that.

 

3. Unplug.

The radical and seemingly bottomless source of information and connection available to us through the superb technology of computers, phones, tvs, tablets, kindles, etc is awesome. But it also easily feeds the mind. When you don’t feel connect to source while using these devices, its best to unplug and move your attention elsewhere.

  • Commit to no electronics for the last two hours you are awake at night, and the first two hours when you wake up in the morning. (or whatever is realistic for you).
  • Charge your electronic devices outside the bedroom.
  • Have an electronics-free day once a week.
  • Limit your time online or with a screen whenever you feel necessary, but especially in the presence of other people or while eating.

 

What are your suggestions for connecting more with spirit?? I’d love to hear in the comments below >>>

 

May you relish in the light of your own inner essence, and be a beacon to those searching for their own.

Love and Blessings xoxo

 

An Ideal Ayurveda Day ~ Dinacharya


Share this :   | | | |

moon and sunset

 

One of the main pillars to ultimate health in Ayurveda is your dinacharya, your daily rhythm. How you structure, move through and experience each day has a huge impact on how you feel, how you age, and how healthy you are in mind/body/spirit.

I’d like to share with you an ideal day, as a combination of different Ayurveda practices and my own personal perspective.

  • Wake up early, preferably before sunrise. As you wake up and lay in bed, take the opportunity to sense into the vastness of the world and universe. Feel into your place in this amazing cosmic and human experience. Begin to actively and intentionally participate in your inner spacial experience, free will, attitude and role. Hone your center, your attitude, your love. Avoid getting onto your cellphone, checking emails, sending texts, etc. Instead, cultivate your inner state of being. Hone your center, raise your vibration, start attracting the positive things or experiences you desire. Give thanks and share blessings.
  • Go to the bathroom, scrape your tongue, brush your teeth and wash your face.
  • Drink a cup, up to a liter or more, of filtered water. Add lemon or apple cider vinegar, and make it hot if you’d like. This flushes out all of your channels, especially your main digestive tract. If you haven’t had a bowel movement yet, this is a great practice to help you go, without using coffee or caffeine.
  • Open your body through breath. After clearing your channels, you can do a nice 10-30 minute exercise session. The main idea is to bring breath, prana – vital life force energy, into all the cells and tissues of your physical body. You open up, activate, and connect. Dancing, going for a walk, yoga postures, tai chi, aerobics, any exercise that helps you deepen your breath is awesome.
  • Sit in silence for 5, 10, 20 or 30 minutes. Connect with your heart and spirit. Let the divine center of your being harmonize your entirety.
  • Have a nourishing breakfast. I advocate a natural, plant based diet. The more fruits and vegetables the better! Sit down and eat in a quiet, settled atmosphere.
  • Enjoy your day and your work. Come back to the intentions you set in the early morning, reflect on and reestablish your inner state of being if you like.
  • Have your main meal of the day around noon. The digestive fire at the base of the stomach is the strongest at this time, which gives you the greatest capability to digest, transform and assimilate all of the nutrients from your food into strong, healthy tissues.
  • Finish working in the early evening.
  • Have an early and light dinner. This helps the food move through the digestive tract to relieve the main digestive fire so your metabolism can go deeper to work. This helps to burn, transform, move out and discard all the cellular waste in the body. It heals inflammation, helping you wake up feeling clear, light and energized rather than groggy, heavy, lethargic or bogged down.
  • Enjoy a fun, easy, relaxing and playful evening. Reading a book, spending time in nature, going for a leisurely walk, doing one of your favorite hobbies, hanging out with friends and family, or just generally chilling out and having a nice evening is key. This helps you feel happier and more satisfied in life. You feel more relaxed, content, joyful, easeful, nourished and taken care of. Taking part in your more sweet, soulful and sensuous nature helps enhance your ojas – subtle essence and glow, immunity, moon qualities. It prevents burnout, exhaustion and fatigue.
  • Prepare for bed with a nourishing, restorative and relaxing night time ritual. Bathe (if you didn’t in the morning), give yourself an oil massage, and get into bed early. Say prayers, journal, read a book, and have some quiet time. Avoid using anything with a glowing screen after the sun goes down. Even better, keep all electronics out of your bedroom, including your phone.
  • Give thanks for the day and go to sleep early. Enjoy your restoration and caring for yourself.

 

 

How to feel more rested


Share this :   | | | |

ee67aacdb6b25d6c18cf25eace985c1b

Do you ever feel like you’re not getting enough sleep? Your alarm goes off and you wish you had another 20 minutes, or an hour to lay in bed? Do you just straight up feel tired, or even exhausted?

 

According to the Center for Disease Control, “insufficient sleep is a public health epidemic.”  What?! That’s pretty huge.

 

So what’s your strategy to get rested? How are you going to start getting the sleep your body really needs to rest, heal, repair and thrive?

 

Pushing your limits, trying to fit in a few more things to accomplish, watching another episode, or just ignoring your needs and not getting into bed might be part of the reason you’re not feeling rested and energized the next day.

 

In the world of Ayurveda, what’s optimal is to align with the rhythms of nature: the cycle of energies each day and season.

 

From 6pm – 10pm the sweet, stabilizing, sensuous energies of Kapha dosha are predominant. As the sun is kissing the day goodbye and the evening turns to night, we’re best to follow suit and slowly turn down, too.

 

After a day’s work, it’s time to rest, relax, rejuvenate, and connect with the people around you. This sweet, softer nature helps to build ojas (immunity, glow) and prevent burn-out and exhaustion. It brings more satisfaction and contentment into your day, and life.

 

Aligning with the softer side in nature also helps us go harder and longer when we need to, such as the next work day.

 

After a nice evening in the garden, or hanging out with your loved ones, the next step is getting yourself into bed.

 

Just as most people wake up to an alarm and have a specific morning routine, I’ve crafted a very sweet evening ritual that helps me relax, release the day away and drift off into dreamland before it’s too late in the night.

 

So here’s my lovely ritual I want to share with you:

  • 9pm my phone chimes as a reminder to start getting ready for bed
  • take a shower
  • abyhangha (self massage with oil) to moisturize my skin and relax my nervous system
  • any other beauty treatment I might want to do that day
  • get into bed
  • close my eyes for a couple minutes to process any residual thoughts/feelings
  • read my current book I’m loving (unless I’m too sleepy)
  • turn off the lights and drift into dreamland whenever I feel tired

 

By regularly going to sleep at a more optimal bed time, the body is able to get the deep rest that it needs. For some people, it might take months or even years to restore, especially if they’ve over-used caffeine or have adrenal fatigue.

 

Eventually, the day can open up more time for you in the morning. As the sun rises, you have an opportunity to tap into the more spacious, expanding and spiritual qualities of the early morning.

 

All in the flow of the greater rhythm of the earth and sun.

 

The main trick to finding “success” in a more restorative evening practice and earlier bedtime, is to use the model laid out by BJ Fogg and have a reminder (such as an alarm) and a reward (such as time to read a book.) This facilitation of changing your behavior is what will alter your pattern to deliver new results —- deeper rest!

 

If you have any sweet tips or stories on your evening ritual and waking up refreshed, I’d love to hear! Send me an email or post in the comments below.

 

And may we all get the rest and rejuvenation we need to shine that much brighter!

 

 

Keep Your Cool. How to Stay Chill in the Heat of Summer ~


Share this :   | | | |

 

 

reduce and cleanse high pitta, stay cool and beat the summer heat

 

 

Summertime = High Pitta Time

 

Summer is in full swing! As the hot, sunny days get hotter, your pitta (fire + water) can rise within.

 

When left unchecked, or while living with with unconscious and unbalancing lifestyle practices, the intensity of summer can increase your pitta really quickly.

Symptoms of high pitta include:

 

  • sensitivity to heat, hot flashes
  • rashes, boils, hives, eczema, and burns on the skin
  • inflammation
  • hemorrhages, bleeding gums, bloodshot eyes
  • dizziness, lightheadedness, fatigue and insomnia
  • headaches or migraines
  • profuse sweating, sweaty palms, sour smell, intense body odor
  • nausea, diarrhea, or loose stools
  • hyperacidity, acid indigestion, heartburn, ulceration
  • feeling burnt out or stressed out
  • impatience, irritability or annoyance
  • anger
  • judgement, jealousy, envy, rejection
  • criticism, sharp mind and opinions
  • cynical, aloof or wanting to always be alone
  • perfectionism, overpowering, controlling or manipulative

 

All of these symptoms of high pitta can be aggravated during the summer season, especially when daily rituals and lifestyle practices are out of alignment.

 

Top Tips to balance or cleanse high pitta ➣

 

Cultivate Clear Channels

Clear channels mean spaciousness. Space is cold, and clarity allows for the cool flow of energy. Clogged channels equals heat, inflammation and irritability.

  1. Have lunch as your main meal of the day and eat an early, light dinner. This supports your body to digest and move things out, and helps your liver and organs clean house while you sleep especially from 10pm – midnight.
  2. Poop first thing in the morning (w/o caffeine) and drink 1 liter of water with lemon to flush your channels.
  3.  Make sure you don’t have any ama (undigested food, toxins or plaque) and if so, do a light cleanse or detox to clear things out to allow your body and mind to stay cool.

 

Adopt an Ayurvedic Diet

  1. Eat whole, fresh, natural, plant-based foods freshly prepared. Green smoothies and fresh green juice with cucumbers, cilantro, aloe, turmeric, bitter greens or mild greens like kale, lettuces, chard, collards, romaine and sweet fruits are especially good to help flush out the pitta.
  2. Eat what’s in season. Summer foods include: sweet, juicy fruits, sweet veggies, whole grains, leafy greens, etc. Favor the sweet, bitter and astringent tastes. Reduce or avoid pungent (spicy), salty and sour including vinegars, fermented foods (kombucha, kimchi) salsa, hot sauce, pickles, preserved or packaged food with sodium, and oily or fried food.
  3. Eliminate inflammatory foods: sugar, wheat, cow dairy, unhealthy fats, gmo’s, alcohol and caffeine.

 

Live in an Easeful Way

Living an easeful life is partially about practices, but mainly about shifting your attitude and perspective of the world or daily occurrences in your life. You have the choice to cultivate your mood, and it’s powerful! Use your freedom in a way to serve you and others best.

  1. With intention, regularly soften and relax into your day, regardless of what is arising.
  2. Create time in the evening for rest, relaxation, fun and playfulness.
  3. Practice meditation and Nadi Shodhana pranayama regularly, everyday.

   Stay Cool

When the days get hot, having a few extra tricks to reduce the heat can create more comfort or feel like a lifesaver.

  1. Use cooling essential oils such as: rose, lavender, sandalwood, peppermint, spearmint, eucalyptus. Diffuse them, make a compress out of cold water on a washcloth and add a few drops of oil, or put into a spray bottle and spritz yourself throughout the day.
  2. Befriend aloe and turmeric. Both can be used internally or externally on the skin. Aloe pulp or gel rubbed over the skin will give a soothing, cooling experience (just think of how well it relieves a sunburn).
  3. Get your feet wet. Walk over wet green grass barefoot. (This is AMAZING for reducing pitta). Dip your feet in a cold river or sink when you’re short on time ~ added bonus put your hands and wrists in too. Running the cold water over the extremities helps to lower your entire body temp. Even better, swim in a fresh lake or river.
  4. Wear light colored cotton or silk clothing. Save black, red and orange for another time.
  5. Take a break at midday and avoid any activities, especially being in the sun. Take a nap, a short siesta, or just a break for a few breaths if you can. Be certain not to exercise or overly exert yourself at this time.

 

These practices can help you feel relieved of the high heat that can accumulate in your body over time, and reduce or cleanse the excess pitta. Balancing pitta is becomes even more essential during the high heat of summer. I hope these tips help you keep your cool all summer long.

 

If you want more insight or assistance in reducing pitta or healing from any of the high pitta symptoms listed above, I’m happy to help.

For information on booking an Ayurveda Consultation, click here.