We all have dealt with summer heat and have hated it most of the time- skin explosions, sweat, and dehydration, summers are mostly about these problems. However, thanks to Ayurveda that practices the science of natural health and has a lot to offer. Summer is hot, bright, and sharp, the season of pitta. Thus, it is recommended to keep cool and not allow pitta dosha to become aggravated.
It is important to consume more basic foods to fight the heat in the body. Eat water-rich foods that will not only re-hydrate your body but also have antioxidants that keep you healthy. Consume onions, green vegetables and drink lots of water. Basically, you should ensure that no dryness instills it as it may heat the body causing various health problems.
Also, Read► Spring-Summer hair colour trend
Here are some Ayurvedic tips to keep cool this summer make sure you follow them to beat the heat.
1. Eat Pitta Pacifying Foods
As per Ayurveda, you must ensure eating foods that cool your body and give you relief from excessive heat. Load up on water-rich fruits like watermelon, pears, apples, plums, berries, and prunes. Pick vegetables like asparagus, broccoli, Brussels sprouts, and cucumber.
2. Avoid Foods That Heat You Up
Avoid foods that will produce heat in your body and become hazardous. Avoid sour fruits, citrus fruits, beetroots, and carrots that tend to heat your body. Limit the intake of garlic, chili, tomato, sour cream, and salted cheese to avoid hampering your system. Eat more salads, as they are cooling, especially when eaten for lunch. Try avoiding dark meats as they heat your body.
3. Eat At The Right Time
Always eat when your digestive fire is at its strongest, which is during lunch (mid-day). Missing your lunch during summers is equal to upsetting your pitta dosha, making you feel irritated and cranky.
Also, Read► Stay hydrated even while being indoors this summer
4. Bring Coconut Oil To Your Rescue
According to the book, in the morning, rub 5-6 ounces of coconut oil on your body before taking a bath as a part of your daily routine. It gives a calming, cooling, and soothing effect to the skin. You can use sunflower oil alternatively.
5. Avoid Hot Drinks Or Hot Water
Drinking hot beverages will invite an upset pitta dosha. This is why you must always choose to drink beverages at room temperature to balance them.
6. Avoid Ice Cold Drinks
Ice-cold drinks only inhibit digestion and create toxins, also known as ama in the body. Your digestive system has a digestive fire that is responsible for converting food into energy. Drinking chilled is almost like putting off the digestive fire causing various health problems.
Go on and follow these important Ayurvedic tips to keep cool to beat the heat. Happy Summers!
Read More► Summer treats to help control High Blood Pressure
As the climate turns, most of us notice changes in the texture and condition of our skin as well. A turn from dry to oily feeling, increase in skin flare-ups, and breakouts are common experiences. Seasonal changes bring with them a lot of environmental changes as well. Along with temperature shifts, humidity levels also fluctuate. The type of pollens or allergic elements in the environment also changes, so do microorganisms. All these changes do have an impact on skin, particularly for those who have sensitive skin, points out Dr. Pankaj Chaturvedi, Dermatologist from Medlinks, New Delhi.
In summer, some people tend to experience skin irritation or acne. As hot weather induces sweating, bacterial growth may also result in bad odors and rashes on sensitive areas. "Sometimes, even as temperature and humidity increase, we overlook the need to shift to lighter non-comedogenic skincare products. This in turn may further induce episodes of flare-ups or breakouts. Some people even report flare-ups in skin conditions such as eczema or psoriasis. Often, the use of heating devices in winters sucks away all moisture from the indoor air, exacerbating skin dryness and related conditions," he says.
A study published in the British Journal of Dermatology concluded that a shift of season does not just change the environmental conditions but also induces changes at the skin's cellular level. The study found that a seasonal shift unleashes a breakdown in filaggrin, a protein that helps modulate the skin's barrier function, along with changes in corneocytes, the cells that form the skin's outer layer. When the skin's barrier function is interrupted, the skin tends to become more vulnerable to irritation and damage, he adds.
Also, Read► PCOS and Its Effects on Skin and Hair
The expert says it is important therefore as weather changes, our skincare regimen also changes to address the needs of the hour. Here are a few suggestions from him:
Change your skincare routine
While, a good cleansing, toning, and moisturizing routine must be followed around the year, an important thing to do is to modify your skincare products as the weather changes occur. So, shifting to lighter non-comedogenic products is the first thing to do as we transition into the summer. If you have been using a cream-based face wash or moisturizer, now is the time to switch to water-based light formulations
Also, Read► Acute skin problems in the summer
Consider some skin procedures
If you have been considering a skin procedure, a seasonal shift is perhaps the appropriate time to undertake it. Not only will it pave the way for a dermatologist visit, but it will also help prepare your skin better against the sudden trauma of weather change.
A dermatologist will examine your skin in-depth and help you make an informed decision of which skin procedure you need. If your skin is experiencing dryness, flakiness, and signs of aging are troubling you, you may consider a hyaluronic acid-based treatment such as Profhilo. Similarly, if you are experiencing oiliness and clogged pores, exfoliating and deep cleansing procedures such as hydra dermabrasion and carbon peels may help. (Puja Gupta)
Read More► 12 Yoga Poses That Do Wonders to Your Skin Naturally
Sleep is an important part of our daily routine we spend about one-third of our lives sleeping. Quality sleep and getting enough of it at the right times is as essential to survival as food and water, says Sibasish Dey, Head, Medical Affairs, Asia and Latin America, ResMed.
Writes the sleep expert:
Globally, studies have shown that sleep along with other benefits, helps in improving our learning and problem-solving skills. Whereas sleep deficiency on the other hand alters the neuro-cognitive process, and we may experience symptoms such as irritability, poor decision making, low problem-solving skills, depression, loss of memory, among others. Thus, this world sleep awareness month, let's take a pledge to relook at our sleep schedules, maintain a healthy circadian rhythm and also increase conversations around the need for a healthy sleep hygiene as we cannot achieve optimal health without taking care of our sleep.
Also, Read► 7 Ayurvedic Herbs for Insomnia
Why are we sleep deprived?
Barriers to a good sleep cycle may include a hectic lifestyle, long erratic working hours, and sleep disorders. Also, habits such as too much screen time, lack of physical activity, consumption of caffeine before bedtime and low exposure to sunlight may disrupt our sleep cycle. Underlying, sleep disorders are also causative of poor sleep. Insomnia is a widely known disorder, but obstructive sleep apnea (OSA), which is a form of sleep disordered breathing is also a common sleep disorder. OSA is caused due to momentary stopping of breath due to muscle relaxation of neck muscles while sleeping and can lead to repeated micro-awakening during sleep -- thus disrupting sleep. Statistics have shown that around 28 million people suffer from sleep apnea in India, 80 per cent of whom are undiagnosed.
Also, Read► Better Sleep Metabolism With Ayurveda
What are the consequences of a disordered sleep cycle?
The cumulative effects of a long period of sleep loss and sleep disorders have been linked to deleterious health consequences, including an impact on our cognitive functions, cardio-metabolic diseases, obesity, impaired immunity, etc. OSA impairs glucose metabolism and promotes weight gain, which puts us at the risk of type 2 diabetes mellitus. Individuals with OSA are at a higher risk of stroke and irregular heart beats. Hence, quite often OSA management goes hand-in-hand along with cardio-vascular medications in individuals who have had a history of cardiac disease.
Few studies have also linked impaired sleep with the risk of cancer. A research at Stanford university has confirmed that sleep deprivation alters the balance of two hormones, cortisol, and melatonin. Cortisol helps in the regulation of immune system activity whereas melatonin helps to fight tumour growth and promote DNA repair, leading to cancer protective effects. Sleep disorders have also been linked road traffic accidents and major industrial accidents globally.
Also, Read► India is sleeping less
How can we sleep better?
It is important to be in sync with our body's natural sleep -- wake cycle. We must set aside 8 hours for regular sleep and try to sleep and wake up at the same time every day. Exercise, exposure to sunlight are important to get good sleep. Pre-sleep activities such taking a warm bath and meditation also helps us sleep well.
In case of symptoms such as morning headaches, excessive daytime sleepiness, snoring, breathing pauses during sleep, unexplained fatigue, it is important to seek help of a sleep specialist. With the advent of digital technologies, sleep diagnosis is easily accessible in our bedrooms. One such test is OneSleepTest, which is one of its kind, safe, accurate, simple, and comprehensive home sleep test-kit being distributed by ResMed in India. Battling sleep issues with easy remedies and treatments is the first step we can take to manage the global problem of sleep deficiency. Sleep therapies can help in bringing us closer to living life to the fullest. (Siddhi Jain )
Read More► Sleep: The most underrated antioxidant
Are you dealing with the stressful symptoms of PCOS? Be it missed periods, excessive hair growth on the face or body, weight gain, acne, and fertility issues. The pandemic made it all the more difficult to consult our doctor face-to-face to deal with these problems, but digital healthcare platforms have made it easier for women dealing with such queries to consult the right doctor.
The Covid-19 pandemic may have accelerated the shift towards digital healthcare practices in India, but its adoption among women in 2020- especially in non-metro cities- has been significant. Registering an overall growth of more than 212 per cent from the previous year, online consultations emerged as one of the preferred modes of consulting doctors by women in India, according to data from Practo.
According to Practo, more women in non-metro cities opted for online consultations in 2020- growing at an average rate of 550 per cent, compared with 400 per cent recorded among women in metro cities. This means that even as the majority (65 per cent) of the total number of online consultations done by women in 2020 were from metro cities, there has been a steady increase in the percentage of women from non-metro cities adopting telemedicine. In fact, this trend has been developing over the past three years.
PCOS, skin allergy, weight loss, thyroid, depression, hair fall, and UTI were some of the most discussed queries by women from non-metro cities last year, says the health platform.
Women with PCOS have numerous cysts in their ovaries, caused by an overproduction of hormones called androgens. Polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) is a condition that prevents the ovaries from functioning properly. PCOS is also a red flag for the inception of type 2 diabetes, explains Prabha Acharya, Homeopath, who also consults on Practo.
For few women, gaining weight can influence their hormones. If you're obese or overweight, this might help get your hormones back to normal. Losing 10 per cent of your body weight may help your menstrual cycle become more predictable. This should help you get pregnant.
Therefore, weight loss prior to conception helps improve the live birth rate in obese women with or without PCOS. In simple words, living a healthy lifestyle and following the diet, with regular exercise, no smoking, less stress, and control of diabetes and other medical conditions prescribed by your doctor should improve your fertility odds. To lose weight on a PCOS diet, re-frame your thinking to eating to live, not living to eat.
Quick tips from the doctor:
1. Drink a lot of water and keep yourself well hydrated.
2. Eat foods low on the glycemic index. Low glycemic index foods are carbohydrates that break down slowly in the body, not causing a dramatic spike and then drop in insulin levels. Eat oats, brans, whole grains, broccoli, apples, etc. Avoid foods that are sugary and starchy such as syrups, sugar, jams, scones, white bread products, etc.
3. Eat more fruits and vegetables for good fiber intake. Fiber helps promote healthy estrogen metabolism which aids in the reduction of elevated levels of androgens. E.g. whole grains, apples (with skin), green leafy vegetables, etc.
4. Eat small frequent meals in a day and avoid skipping any meal and especially the first meal of the day i.e. breakfast.
5. Include lean protein in your diet. E.g. lean chicken, fish, egg, nuts, legumes, pulses, low-fat dairy products, skimmed milk, etc.
6. Eat healthy Omega-3 fats in your diet. Sources: fatty fish, olive oil, walnuts, flax seeds, etc. And avoid foods that are high in saturated fat, such as meats, cheeses, and fried foods.
7. Get some sun rays for 10-15 mins for your Vitamin D requirement. Great food sources of vitamin D are cod liver oil, eggs, salmon, etc.
8. Exercise daily. Exercise plays a huge role by keeping weight in check, this helps regulate the hormones and increases chances of ovulation.
9. Distress yourself. Try yoga.
10. Avoid drinking aerated drinks. Avoid processed, junk food. Quit smoking and alcohol. A regular visit to the doctor for follow-up.
Follow your plan and most importantly believe in yourself, because only you have the potential to change your circumstances! (Siddhi Jain)
Read More► How Single Thought or Argument Can Turn Into Disease
When we break the word 'disease', it comes through as 'dis' and 'ease'- something that is not at ease. Anything which makes you can cause you a disease. Anything that can cause you a problem and a normal human being can see it through normal naked eyes like a physical problem, for instance, high fever that can be seen through temperature, or cancer, or diabetes are all physical problems.
In short, anything that we can see or feel through our eyes is a physical problem. In short. anything that we can see or feel through our eyes is a physical problem. And this is the reason why mental health is never considered as important as physical health because it is never seen.
Talking about how a single thought or argument takes the shape of a disease, I would like to quote it with an example. When one person says something and the other person did not like it or didn't understand, this will make the body cell unease. This time the body of the second person goes through 3 stages of F - Flight, Fight and Freeze. So, during such circumstances, either the person will fight back, or flight means escape from it or freeze. All 3 stages give a physical problem. These 3 stages are initially a mental problem but if not cured takes the form of a physical problem.
In today's time, females are facing body shaming. So, if anyone comments on the body shape or size it will affect your mental and physical health strongly. Sometimes, the person does not know how to reply or reverse the psychology.
This suppression will lead to cancer or tumor. When you are not able to express what your thoughts are or what your body is feeling then it will ruin your cells and water elements, and this can eventually be seen in physical form.
Here are some techniques to get rid of these unwanted emotions:
1. Drink Water
If your body is uncomfortable with any kind of unwanted thought then immediately drink a glass of water. This is because the moment any thought comes to your body it will be in vibrational form through your auditory nerves and carry it to the auditory brain, to the fourth layer of the brain. Drinking water will immediately cure the damaged cell of the body. And later the thought is let go from the body.
Also, Read► Know all the W’s of water
2. Communicate Your Emotions Softly
When someone is saying something unpleasant then try to communicate what you are feeling. Ensure that your tone is not rude. Try to communicate softly. Even if your tone is a little louder, then your voice and words must be clear.
3. Butterfly Tapping on the Wrist
Whenever you feel uncomfortable with a feeling, do a butterfly tapping on your wrist. It is an EFT technique. It is very effective in releasing unpleasant emotions.
4. Breathe in Breathe Out
This technique is usually done for the emotions that are evoked by thinking of any past moments. Whenever you are thinking about that uneasy thought, do the breathing process which will remove the extra toxic from your body.
Not considering mental health an important issue is because of human psychology. Until some disease is not visible people will not take it seriously. It is high time to keep a check on our mental health. This will help to keep any doctor or psychology expert at bay.
(Anju Sharma is a Psychic reformer, Sound and Energy Master, Wellness-Holistic Coach, International Speaker, and Founder of the Musical Healing Band named "Sound of Infinity")
Read More► Best 10 Ayurvedic Tips For The Sleep Disorder
Women have always been the epicenter of our family lives, and are now budding into entrepreneurs, impactful team players, and opinion leaders that shape society and walk towards a brighter future. As women grow in their roles daily and challenge the barriers with their modern-day approach, it is of utmost importance to keep our health on track and adapt to a healthier and fitter lifestyle to manage the best of both worlds.
Sheryl Salis, a Registered Dietician, and Certified Diabetes Educator share 5 healthy ingredients to include in our diet to channelize our inner Boss Lady.
Age-old Turmeric Therapy
Turmeric commonly known as Haldi has been in the sheer spotlight for all the right reasons in these recent times. It is one of the most common super-foods in Indian households that are accepted widely for its ayurvedic and medicinal properties. According to Ayurveda, turmeric balances all the 'doshas', cleanses the blood and purifies the toxins from the body.
The curcumin present in turmeric aids to boost immunity, anti-septic and anti-viral property, and anti-inflammatory. A famous rendition of turmeric is our very own haldi ka doodh which has been an age-old remedy in Indian households for years and stands relevant even today! We can swap our mid-day beverages with an enriching cup of turmeric latte and witness the results ourselves.
Boost Immunity with 100 Percent Pure Honey
Honey has been a healthier alternative in all our deserts and immunity kadhas for time immemorial. It has regained its importance in our Indian households, especially during the pandemic for immunity boosting and DIY kadhas. Identifying pure honey has become increasingly important in these tough times where we can get maximum benefits from this golden traditional superfood. We should always go for FSSAI approved honey, for 100 per cent surety lookout for the NMR approved mark i.e. Nuclear Magnetic Resonance technology which ensures unadulterated honey including no added sugar. NMR is seen as the gold-standard for testing for adulteration in honey.
Replace Sugar with Pure Honey. Honey contains natural anti-oxidants that help build immunity and support overall health. A turmeric latte in the morning or just some warm water and lemon with hints of garlic and honey is the best way to start our day and help us stay healthy and glowing throughout.
Soybean has always been a healthier alternative to our veggie-folks to maximize their protein intake. It also contains women-friendly isoflavones which are phytoestrogens. Phytoestrogens are plant-based foods that can have an estrogen-like effect on the body which helps to reduce menopause symptoms like hot flashes and night sweats. This helps us stay calm mentally, and physically avoiding any discomfort in our daily lives. Studies have shown that including 40 g of soy protein in our diet can help increase bone mineral density thereby preventing osteoporosis.
Soybean can be incorporated easily in our daily meal plan in the form of unflavoured soy milk, soy paneer/cheese (tofu), soy granules, soy atta, soy yogurt, and soy nuts which are available freely at all supermarkets and at many grocery stores. Soya should be roasted/cooked before use to destroy its anti-nutritional properties!
Amla for All
Amla, also known as the Indian Gooseberry, has always been a much-talked-about ingredient in Indian households for the wide list of benefits that it has to offer. Amla is the richest source of vitamin C and is packed with many other vitamins and minerals. Fun Fact -- One Amla packs the Vitamin C power equivalent to 2 Oranges. Other than its generous benefits on skin and hair, Amla has also shown to be effective in controlling blood glucose and blood cholesterol levels. Amla's blood purifying components help in getting clear moisturized, and radiant skin that we all crave during winters when our skin dries out and looks pale. Amla can be consumed as the fruit itself or as fresh amla juice or amla powder to get maximum benefits in our everyday diets.
Go Coco-nuts with VCNO
Coconuts are an integral part of Indian cuisine in many regions for their health and nutritional benefits. While we try to find new ways to adapt the very versatile - coconut in our modern-day diets, switching to virgin cold-pressed coco-oil is the talk of the town, these days. Virgin Coconut Oil, contains a rich amount of MCTs that help in easy digestion and boosts the immunity system. It is also a really good fix for weight management, heart health, and brain function. We can go on binging our favorite fried food or coco-deserts without feeling guilty about the calorie tracker.
While we gear up and celebrate the women of today, let's strive for healthier and more insightful choices this Women's Day by taking care of our mental and physical health first. After all, it's all that the inner boss lady demands - Good Health & Good Vibes! (Agency)
Read More► International Women's Day: Ayurvedic perspective on women’s health