Online services only during current COVID-19 lockdown.

AYURVEDIC SELF CARE

AYURVEDA HAS A VERY RICH TRADITION OF SIMPLE REMEDIES AND RITUALS FOR DAILY SELF-CARE. OVER TIME, WE WILL SHARE SOME OF THESE ON THIS PAGE.

TURMERIC

AYURVEDIC SELF CARE: TURMERIC

Ayurveda has known for thousands of years the benefits of turmeric, and today modern science also is able to confirm these qualities. One of these is that turmeric is a natural hemostatic (1) - it has the ability to act as a coagulant and help stop bleeding. It also has the ability to hasten the healing process by acting on various stages of natural wound healing (2). This is an absolute boon for home use when it comes to minor cuts and abrasions and for me is a go to remedy whenever these situations arise. For small cuts, at home, we clean and disinfect the wound and then pack in turmeric powder to the area and then use a band aid over this. The effect is that the bleeding stops much quicker and the wound heals much faster. Do be mindful when using turmeric though as it will stain your clothes – and will for a short period leave your skin a little yellow.

(1)  Keihanian F, Saeidinia A, Bagheri RK, Johnston TP, Sahebkar A. Curcumin, hemostasis, thrombosis, and coagulation. J Cell Physiol. 2018 Jun;233(6):4497-4511. doi: 10.1002/jcp.26249. Epub 2017 Dec 26. PMID: 29052850.

(2)  Akbik, Dania & Ghadiri, Mali & Chrzanowski, Wojciech & Rohanizadeh, Ramin. (2014). Curcumin as a Wound Healing Agent. Life Sciences. 116. 10.1016/j.lfs.2014.08.016.

Please note: This post is for educational purposes only, and does not in any way replace medical advice or care.

NIGHTLY FOOT MASSAGE

AYURVEDIC SELF-CARE: NIGHTLY FOOT MASSAGE

Offering relief from the day, and invoking relaxation, rejuvenation, balance and grounding, as well as helping to promote a sound night of sleep is the Ayurvedic evening ritual of massaging one's feet. 

A simple way to do this is through the following:

  • Wash or wipe your feet with a washcloth or take a shower.
  • Place a towel under your feet.
  • Warm a little oil (cold pressed black sesame oil is best, but sunflower or almond oil is also fine) through placing some oil in a jar in a water bath.
  • With a little oil, begin to massage your ankles in circular motions completely around each ankle.
  • Take a little more oil and massage the top of the feet, moving back and forth from the toes to the ankle with longer strokes and pressing into the crevices between the bones.
  • Massage the sole of the foot and the heel. Use circular strokes on the joints of the ball of the foot.
  • Pinch and massage each toe from the base to the tip.
  • Roll the ankle in both directions.
  • Repeat the process on the other foot.
  • At the end, make sure to put wipe off excess oil and put socks on before getting up.

Please note: This post is for educational purposes only, and does not in any way replace medical advice or care.

A SPICED EVENING DRINK TO AID SLEEPING

AYURVEDIC SELF-CARE: WARM MILK AND NUTMEG DRINK

According to Ayurveda, nutmeg is a heating spice that has sedative properties, which aids in balancing the nervous system, and also acts as a digestive stimulant, helping to improve digestion. Research also indicates that nutmeg with these sedative properties, also can aid in a better night’s sleep (1).

Warm milk, according to Ayurveda, is one of the ultimate nourishing foods, promoting healthy tissues, a balanced nervous system, and overall health for body and mind. Modern research - although this research to date is limited - has shown that tryptophan in milk (and other protein containing foods) (2) plays a significant role in production of the neurotransmitter serotonin, which helps to boost moods, promote relaxation and works as a precursor in the production of melatonin - the sleep hormone.

This drink is best taken an hour before going to bed and 2-3 hours after your evening meal.

INGREDIENTS

  • 1 cup of full cream milk – preferably organic or biodynamic (Non-dairy milk can also be used)
  • Pinch of nutmeg powder
  • Pinch of cinnamon (optional)
  • Jaggery or raw honey to taste


DIRECTIONS:

Add the milk, and nutmeg and cinnamon to a saucepan and bring this to the boil on a med-low heat.
Allow it to simmer for 2-3 minutes on low flame.
Pour into a mug and allow to cool a little. Then add in the honey** or jaggery. 

** According to Ayurveda, when honey is heated or cooked, it changes its properties to make it more toxic to the body.

(1)  Sherry, C.J., Burnett, R.E. Enhancement of ethanol-induced sleep by whole oil of nutmeg. Experientia 34, 492–493 (1978). https://doi.org/10.1007/BF0193...

(2)  Friedman M. Analysis, Nutrition, and Health Benefits of Tryptophan. Int J Tryptophan Res. 2018 Sep 26;11:1178646918802282. doi: 10.1177/1178646918802282. PMID: 30275700; PMCID: PMC6158605.

Please note: This post is for educational purposes only, and does not in any way replace dietary, and/or medical advice or care.

MAKING GHEE

AYURVEDIC SELF CARE: MAKING GHEE

Ghee, or clarified butter is prepared by heating butter to remove water content and then filtering out the precipitated milk solids.

Traditionally, Ayurveda considered ghee to be the healthiest source of edible fats, and has been used in cooking (as well as for other medicinal purposes) for centuries. Whilst modern scientific research on the benefits of ghee (specifically) is currently in its infancy, ghee does have one of the highest ‘smoke points’ (1) of any of the oils, which does make it a viable option - when used in moderation - in cooking.

The ‘smoke point’ of an oil refers to the temperature where the fats start to break down and form unhealthy compounds (a.k.a., free radicals).

In our household, ghee has replaced other sources of cooking oils and we make our own ghee instead of buying it. Here, we show the method of how to make ghee yourself at home.

(1)  Kumar, Anil & Naik, Satya. (2018). Ghee: Its Properties, Importance and Health Benefits.

INGREDIENTS

-       250g of organic unsalted butter (I prefer butter from an organic store rather than the supermarket as I find I get a better quality ghee from this).

METHOD:

-       Note: Do not leave the kitchen whilst you are doing this as you need to carefully watch for the different stages so you know when the ghee is ready. Also, do not use a spoon to stir the ghee when making (important).

-       I have broken the process up as this makes it easier for people when they are first learning about what changes occur in the saucepan and what to look out for.

-       One 250g block of butter takes about 5-7 minutes or so to complete the process.

Stage 1

-       Take 250g of organic unsalted butter and place it in a saucepan.

-       Heat this on low to medium flame until it fully melts.

-       Turn the heat down to a very low boil.

-       At this stage the butter will be opaque and may begin to have a white froth on top, and will look like melted foam. You will also hear lots of gurgling/bubbly sounds.

Stage 2

-       The froth lessens but you will still see it on top. The butter looks to be a little less opaque. Larger bubbles begin to rise to the surface from the base of the pan.

Stage 3

-       A light top layer of froth is visible, with the bubbles rising from the bottom of the pan becoming noticeably smaller. Here, the separation starts to occur from the solids (lactose) from the fats (ghee) and if you look carefully you will see this happening.

Stage 4

-       The ghee starts to become clear. You will start to see the dregs of lactose solids forming at the base of the saucepan (tip the pan a little to see this). There may also be a slight layer of foam still at the top.

Stage 5

-       The bubbles become really small and look shiny to the eye. There will be a shift in the smell of the ghee – and you will now smell something that is like buttered popcorn. When this occurs, your ghee is ready. Take the ghee off the heat.

-       If you have really brown dregs at the base of the saucepan and the ghee is darkish in colour, and/or there is a nutty smell to the ghee, then you have overcooked it.

Stage 6

-       Let the ghee cool a little in the pan for 5-10 minutes or so. Then strain it through a cheesecloth into a clean and fully dry jar.

Ghee can be kept on the kitchen shelf and does not need refrigeration per se. Always use a clean, dry spoon when ladling out ghee from the jar, otherwise you will create an environment that will allow bacteria to grow and spoil the ghee.

If you want your ghee to have a real golden colour to it, add in some turmeric powder when making the ghee.

Please note: This post is for educational purposes only, and does not in any way replace dietary and/or medical advice or care.

 

This product has been added to your cart

CHECKOUT