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Ayurvedic Remedies for the Cold and Flu Season

Ayurvedic Remedies for the Cold and Flu Season

Ayurvedic Remedies for the Cold and Flu Season by Shanti Gowans

 

With the cold and flu season upon us, there are quite a few things in the Ayurvedic medicine toolkit that help, such as:

Tribhuvan kirti – the traditional and effective Ayurvedic formulation that provides immediate relief from coughs, body aches, colds and fevers. It is traditionally administered with honey, fresh ginger and tulsi juice. It addresses the problem at its root and fortifies the system from viruses. Buy it here.

Vasosin cough syrup –  an effective herbal expectorant helpful in treating bronchitis, bronchiectasis, emphysema, and productive coughs. Buy it here.

Shwas Kuthar (shwaskuthar) – is used in the treatment of coughs, colds, asthma, bronchitis, anorexia, indigestion. Comes in three sizes: 60 tablets, 80 tablets, 100 tablets.

Sitopaladi churna (or choorna) – is helpful in conditions such as fever related to flu, colds, chest congestion, pneumonia, tuberculosis, bronchitis, and other respiratory illnesses. Comes in 50g and 100g sizes.

Sukshma Trifala (Sookshma Triphala)-  is useful in the treatment of follicular tonsillitis, septic tonsillitis, uvulitis, stomatitis, painful caries, toothache, conjuctavitis. This herbal preparation may help control respiratory infections due to its anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties.and then to help build immunity.

Praval Pishti – is used in the Ayurvedic treatment of coughs, colds, excessive burning sensations. It is useful in decreasing nausea and dizziness associated with migraines arising from heightened Pitta and Vata doshas in the system. It is also prescribed to help alleviate the side effects (gastritis, excess burning sensations etc) of heating medicines.

Chavyanprash (or Chyawanprash or Chyavanaprasam)  – holds high significance in bolstering immunity, enhancing heart functioning, treating loss of libido, improves fertility, promotes hair growth and is helpful in various skin conditions. Chyawanprash helps with better absorption of calcium and protein synthesis, thereby strengthening bones and teeth, and improving muscle tone.

Trikatu Churna (Trikatu Choorna) – helps manage coughs and asthma. It is thermogenic, restores cellular metabolism, detoxifies deep tissues, and body composition reconditioning. Helpful in managing sinusitis and chronic rhinitis. In Ayurveda, it is suggested that Trikatu may help manage agni (digestive fire) and may help in the digestion and removal of aama (toxins) from the body. It may help in weight loss and management of obesity. Buy it here.

This information is provided for the use of Ayurvedic practitioners only. These are all currently in stock. Both face-to-face as well as teleconsultations are available. Some of these remedies are very powerful, and self medication and over dosage may prove dangerous. They should only be taken under strict medical supervision, in precise dosage for a limited period of time, as advised. Please consult with your Ayurvedic practitioner before using any Ayurvedic or herbal products, for dosage, appropriateness for your body type, contraindications with current medications, pregnancy, lactation, and children, side effects, and take good care of yourself.

We sincerely wish you the best of health and happiness. Shanti Gowans

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Ayurveda – Wellness Naturally

Ayurveda – Wellness Naturally

Ayurveda – Wellness Naturally
by Shanti Gowans

What is Ayurveda?

Ayurveda, literally the ‘science or knowledge of life’, is a 5000 year old Indian medical practice that encompasses a range of treatments, including Herbal Medicine, appropriate diet and lifestyle changes, meditation, massage and Yoga, tailored towards one’s specific unique constitution, or body type, to maintain or restore health.

This system of natural healing that originated in India, has a rich history of oral and written traditions which have been passed down for thousands of years. It is the oldest documented system of medicine in the world.

The word Ayurveda is derived from the words Ayus meaning life and longevity and Veda meaning science or knowledge. Originating in India, founded by ancient ‘seers’ or rishis, it then spread to Egypt, Greece, Rome, Tibet, China, Russia, Japan, and is the cornerstone of many other traditional systems of medicine. But more than just a system of medicine, it is a way to promote longevity and the harmonious integration of body, mind, senses and spirit. Ayurveda is the most senior, continuously practised, complete healing and health care system on the planet.

Ayurveda is wellness naturally.

Ayurvedic principles are based upon the unchanging laws of Nature. As we are part of nature, so the treatments that correct our weaknesses will be found in nature. We are all part of a greater whole. Everything in nature is reflected in each organism and is reflected in ourselves. For instance, according to Ayurveda every person contains a combination of the universe’s five building blocks, the basic elements of space, air, fire, water and earth, which in each individual functions as three biological and metabolic types, or doshas. Ayurveda uses the terms Vata (air/space), Pitta (fire) and Kapha (earth/water) to describe unique psycho-biological make-up which are the components of your body type. Illness arises by an imbalance in one or more of the doshas, which disturbs the tissues and wastes in the body, resulting in toxicity in the body and mind.

Ayurveda itself is a complete, holistic science, encompassing preventative health, health maintenance, health improvement and the treatment of disease. It not only addresses specific health concerns, but also offers explanations as to why one person responds differently to another, both physically and psychologically, in similar circumstances. It can be applied to every activity in life, and for some, becomes a complete way of life. Research has shown that individuals who practice Ayurvedic health are at decreased risk for high blood pressure, high cholesterol and all factors for heart disease, and stress. Herbal remedies within the treatment are considered to help allergies, arthritis, chronic fatigue, menstrual cramps, Parkinson’s disease and digestive disorders, including constipation and irritable bowel syndrome.

Ayurvedic principles are natural. Amongst its basic principles, Ayurveda proposes:

  • The microcosm and macrocosm reflect each other
  • Every cause has an effect…and every effect has a cause
  • For every action there is an equal and opposite reaction
  • Like increases like
  • A quality is decreased by its opposite quality.
  • There is no pain in the body without vata, no inflammation in the body without pitta and no oedema in the body without kapha.
  • Balance and health for each individual is unique – one size/treatment/medicine/regime etc. does not fit all.

By applying these and other Ayuredic principles to everyday life, Ayurveda helps you create harmony in the body, mind and spirit, thereby prolonging life and eliminating the causes of disease and dysfunction.

Ayurvedic medicines and treatments

Ayurveda is the medicine of nature and the medicine of life. The treatments of Ayurveda are found in the natural world, and most are simply diet and lifestyle. Plant-based herbs help the body get balanced and then the body heals itself. Eating foods that are most beneficial for your body type will keep you healthy. Regular regime is important.

This magnificent system of holistic medicine and living reveals knowledge about life and health after careful observation of hundreds of thousands of individuals, animals, plants, trees and nature in general, over thousands of years. Ayurvedic sages recorded in encyclopaedic writings the strategies that worked and those that didn’t for every aspect of health and way of living. Being over 5,000 years old and having stood the test of time, this science proven true from the time that the early India sages shared their wisdom and knowledge of this science to today.

Ayurveda recommends specific lifestyle routines, foods and diet, medicines and procedures based upon your unique psycho-biological make-up (your body-type, prakruti, which was determined at birth). Ayurvedic diets and treatments are body type specific.

Does Ayurveda complement conventional medicine?

Ayurveda is a safe system of medicine, with an extensive history of traditional use and depending upon the ailment, can be used as a complete alternative to conventional medicine or alongside it as a complementary or integrated medicine for good health and well-being.

The World Health Organisation recognises Ayurveda as a holistic system of healthcare. Ayurveda can be used whilst undergoing conventional medicine treatments. Ayurveda can help restore balance to your body, and may reduce the need for many conventional medicines. Your Ayurvedic practitioner and doctor can work together to maximise your treatment result. Its speciality and strength lie in its individualised approach to your unique requirements.

While orthodox medicine helps to manage the symptoms through prescribed medications, often the cause of the condition is left untreated, and the patient remains dependent upon the medication. On the contrary, Ayurvedic remedies, while managing the presenting symptom, will also aim at treating the root cause of the illness.

What can Ayurveda treat?

Ayurveda is often referred to as Ashtanga Ayurveda, because it has 8 branches.

The eight brances are:

Internal Medicine and Therapeutics, kayachikitsa.
The word ‘kaya’ represents the digestive fire in the body, agni, which is responsible for the metabolism in the body. Imbalance to ‘agni’ is the cause for many diseases. Kaya chikitsa deals with the treatment of general ailments, such as fever, diarrhea and cough, by treating your agni.

Gynaecology, Pediatrics and Treatment of Children, kaumara bhritya or baala chikitsa.
There are three aspects that must be remembered while treating children:Children cannot explain their complaintsThe dosage of medicine is different for childrenThe medicines given to children must be palatable to them.Because of these conditions, treating children is addressed in a different manner. Hence a separate study is devoted for them.

Psychology and psychosomatic diseases, graha chikitsa or bhuta vidya.
This branch of Ayurveda provides treatment for diseases of psychosomatic disorders, including insanity, and also epilepsy and diseases caused by affliction of external factors.

Treatment of disease of the organs above the clavicle, urdhvanga chikitsa, or shalakya tantra.
This branch of Ayurveda addresses the head, opthalmology, oro-dental, E,N.T., and thus includes the treatment of eyes, ears, nose, throat, mouth, teeth and head.

Surgery, shalya chikitsa.
This branch of Ayurveda deals with treatment of diseases caused by foreign bodies and diseases that need surgical therapies. It is carried out only for diseases, which cannot be cured by medicines.

Toxicology, damstra chikitsa or visha chikitsa or agada tantra.
This form of treatment specialises with the treatment of poisoning from animals, such as snakes, insects, spiders, scorpions and also of plants, metals and minerals.

Geriatrics, rejuvenation and anti-aging, jara chikitsa or rasayana chikitsa.
Treatment for rejuvenation and restoring the youthfulness of an individual, and prescribes various therapies and herbs that have to be taken to restore your youth and vitality.

Aphrodisiac therapy, vrsha chikitsa or vajikarana chikitsa.
This branch of Ayurveda deals with treatment of reproduction that helps to get good progeny and provides various medicines and therapies to improve the virility and the sexual prowess of a person to help towards this end.

Thus we can see that Ayurveda is effective in treating a wide range of health conditions relating to physical, mental and emotional states. It can be effectively employed in treatment of both acute and chronic diseases. Ayurveda treats the individual by addressing the imbalance in the vitality of a sick person. Thus Ayurveda can help people suffering with any named or unnamed (undiagnosed) illness. Most common, acute and chronic disorders respond well to Ayurveda.

 

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Trikatu

Trikatu

Trikatu
tri means three.
katu means hot and pungent.

Trikatu is a classic mixture of three Indian spices, namely Black pepper, Piper nigrum, Long pepper fruit, Piper longum and Ginger, Zingiber officinalis, in equal proportions, widely used in Ayurvedic treatments and in Indian households. These herbs work in synergy to stimulate the digestive fire, or agni, allowing for more efficient digestion in the stomach while promoting proper bile flow, healthy detoxification and fat metabolism. It falls under both medicinal and dietary herbs. It is hot in potency, stimulative in nature, good for liver, spleen and pancreas. It stimulates the stomach to produce enzymes, and hence helps in digestion. It is a rejuvenative for kapha and also beneficial for the respiratory system, supporting healthy lungs and clear breathing.

This unique herbal combination when used along with other herbs, enhances the bio-availability of active constituents of the co-herbs in the target area of disease. Trikatu is used as an ingredient in many Ayurvedic medicines, for instance in tablets such as Kanchnar Guggul, Gokshuradi Guggulu, Yograj Guggulu; in herbal jams,  herbal ghees, and other medicines, such as Dashamoolakatutraya kashayaAshwagandharishta, and so on.

Trikatu Churna

Churna is a Sanskrit term meaning powder.  The fine, powdered mix of three pungent spice is known as Trikatu Churna.

Trikatu churna is also known as trayushanaUshana means hot and pungent.  It has the following benefits:

  • Deepana – it improves digestive strength.
  • Shleshmaghna – it balances kahpa dosha.
  • Medoghna – it burns fat. Reduces cholesterol levels.
  • Kushta – useful in skin diseases.
  • Peenasa – useful in running nose, allergic rhinitis
  • Jayet Arochakam – relieves anorexia.
  • Ama – useful to relieve ama (a state of indigestion).
  • Meha – useful in diabetes
  • Gulma – useful in abdominal tumour, bloating
  • Galamaya – useful in throat infection and diseases.

Trikatu and Digestion

Digestion is one of the first body functions to suffer in the case of stress and tumultuous emotions, as well as improper self-care, eating on the run, a lack of exercise, and inappropriate or imbalanced diet. Compromised digestion is not a rare case in the modern world. In fact, according to Ayurveda, most imbalances in the body begin with boggy, sluggish, or otherwise inefficient digestion.

The stomach produces an acid called hydrochloric acid (HCL) that is responsible for breaking down many of the hard-to-digest proteins we consume such as wheat, dairy, corn, soy, certain nuts and meats. While excess stomach acid seems to be an increasingly prevalent issue these days, sometimes it is necessary to boost the production of the stomach fire (acid). Trikatu is a wonderful tool for getting the digestion back on track, can play an instrumental role in stoking the digestive fire that is so needed for optimal health. For weak digestion/absorption Trikatu can be taken before lunch. However, before you do, it is important to rule out two possible scenarios that could undermine your success:

Possible Dehydration

The stomach is lined and buffered with a bicarbonate layer of cells that is 80% water and often becomes dehydrated. To remedy this, drink 8-12 oz of water 15-30 minutes before the meal. (Do not drink this water with the meal, as this will dilute the stomach acid.)

Possible Bile Flow Issues

Bile is a buffer for the stomach acid. If the bile is not flowing adequately, then the stomach can either hold onto the acid, which is associated with occasional heartburn, or eventually turn down the production of stomach acid. If the stomach acid has been turned down because of the lack of bile, then resetting the digestive agni will not work. If you have any issues when you challenge your digestion with hard-to-digest fatty or greasy foods, then this may be a bile flow issue. And you may need to cleanse, hydrate and repair your liver before you start taking trikatu.

When your digestive furnace is weakened because of stress or other digestive imbalances, the three heating spices in Trikatu work in synergy to stimulate the digestive fire, helping your stomach increase production of hydrochloric acid (HCL), allowing for more efficient digestion in the stomach while promoting proper bile flow, healthy detoxification and fat metabolism. It primes the digestive tract to digest food, absorb nutrients and efficiently remove wastes. However, with incorrect diagnosis, the treatment of HCL acid production could irritate the stomach and intestinal wall, causing discomfort, reactive mucus production, and malabsorption.

Trikatu and the Liver:

Trikatu is experimentally proven for liver protection activity against liver damage. Its carminative and digestive effect (deepana, pachana) can be understood as it stimulates the liver to produce enzymes. Trikatu increases Pitta. Pitta = digestion capacity = digestive enzymes.  One of its ingredients, namely pippali (long pepper) is especially used in treating hepatomegaly and splenomegaly. Another, black pepper, is an excellent antiviral and antibacterial spice, and hence useful in liver infection. For these reasons, Trikatu is an ingredient in many Ayurvedic medicines targeted for liver disorders. For example:

  • Parpatakarishtam – used in anemia, chronic liver disorders, hepatomegaly
  • Sarva Jvarahara Lauha – used in hepatomegaly
  • Gudapippali – used in infectious liver conditions
  • Other such examples (including, but not limited to) are – Patoladi Churna, Navayasa churna.

Trikatu for ascites:

Ascites is the accumulation of fluid in the abdominal (peritoneal) cavity, causing abdominal swelling. The most common cause of ascites is cirrhosis of the liver. Treatment of ascites depends on its underlying cause.

Reference: Charaka Chikitsa Sthana 13th chapter.

For the patient suffering from Kapha type ascites (udara roga with kapha doshadominance), fat-free buttermilk added with Yavani, Rock salt, cumin seeds and Trikatu is administered.

In ascites due to Pitta (pittaja udara), buttermilk prepared of well formed curd along with the powder of Trikatu.

The patient is suffering from ascites with all three dosha imbalance (sannipatika udara), should take buttermilk along with Tryusana, Yavakshara and rock salt.

Trikatu for skin diseases

Intake of Trikatu together with Harad (Haritaki), Jaggery and sesame oil for 1 month cures skin diseases. (reference: Charaka Chikitsa Sthana 7/61).

For pitta issues, such as itching skin, ingest Trikatu just a minute before food, with ghee is best. If you feel any burning sensation, drink a quarter a cup of milk, after taking Trikatu with ghee. Then eat your food.

Trikatu and Respiratory Conditions

Trikatu is useful for asthma, breathing problems as well allergies from dust and pollution. Because of Trikatu’s hot nature, it balances Kapha and Vata doshas,  both of which are imbalanced in asthma. Hence, it is very useful. It is also very useful for dust allergy. But care should be taken in its usage, as it may cause gastric irritation.

Trikatu with honey, taken after a meal can be used to treat hay fever. But in some, it may cause gastric irritation.

Trikatu in Cardiac Conditions

Trikatu helps to improve metabolism, stomach and intestine enzyme levels and to reduce cholesterol levels as well. If a cardiac patient can tolerate the hotness of Trikatu, then they can surely have it.

Trikatu works to lower cholesterol. It helps to improve fat utilisation by the body, hence helping in fat burning.

Trikatu for treating Weightloss and Obesity

Trikatu can be administered along with green tea and guggulu. But the dose of trikatu churna should be very low: only 2 grams per day, either in a single or divided dose.

Trikatu can help with weightloss. Take a very small dose (quarter teaspoon) along with a teaspoon of honey, in the morning, after food, for a period of two months. But care should be taken not to go beyond this dose, or else, it may increase your appetite and may eventually cause weight gain. However, people with a sensitive stomach should exercise precaution.

For overweight people, just mix a pinch (1 gram) of turmeric powder with water, or milk if you like it, and drink. Or you can have weight loss herbal tea, such as Tulsi green tea to substitute a healthier drink instead of coffee on an empty stomach.

Dose:

The decision to take trikatu depends on your health and your needs. As we are all genetically different, with different constitutions and patterns, we respond to treatments in many different ways. Hence Standard Ayurvedic Treatments are always individually formulated. The doses of Ayurvedic medicines are not fixed. Exact dose depends on the age, strength, digestive power of the patient, the nature of the illness, the state of the viscera and humours, and the properties of individual drugs.

For children, the dose of Trikatu churna should be very minimal: just 2 pinches (one pinch is the amount that you can hold with thumb and index finger), mixed with a teaspoon of honey, in the morning after breakfast, for 7 days can be administered for recurring courg and cold. However, you should consult a doctor before giving this or any other medicine to children.

If you have a sensitive stomach, it may cause a burning sensation. Generally, do not exceed 500 mg to 3 grams in divided doses in a day, preferably after food. Trikatu Churna can be taken along with honey or water. If it is too spicy to taste as such, it can also be added to food and taken along with the food.

In the case of gastritis patients, where Trikatu needs to be administered, it is administered along with Shankha Bhasma.

Trikatu Side Effects:

Because of its hot potency, Trikatu may worsen gastritis. It may cause a burning sensation in higher doses.

Cautions

  • Exercise caution for high pitta
  • – Not to be used by pregnant women.
  • – Trikatu churna should not be taken for acidity. It could worsen it.

Available at shantiyoga.com.au or call (o7) 5531 0511

 

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Nirvana Wellbeing Retreats

Nirvana Wellbeing Retreats

The Calling of Joy

Tuesday, 27 December 2022 – Tuesday, 3 January 2023

Live, Love, Laugh and Last a Lifetime

Tuesday, 3 January 2023 – Tuesday, 10 January 2023

The Balanced Life, 8 days-7 nights, Ayurveda and Yoga Retreat. Detox available.

Nirvana Wellbeing Retreat is the home for accessible mind-body solutions curated to boost an individual’s capacity to restore physical and mental health.

The last few years have been….a lot. I know it also hasn’t been easy for many of you. With the turmoil going on all around us, many of us find our minds brimming with greater uncertainty, stress, and anxiety. Rates of chronic and acute conditions are skyrocketing.

Stress, exposure to toxins, aggressive pathogens, and other factors have formed a perfect storm of inflammatory responses that wreak havoc on the body and overall health, all the way down to the cellular level. Over time, these can lead to serious conditions, premature aging, and a decline in overall vitality.

I acknowledge the hardship of all of that, and ask you to see past it, through it, and around it. Focus on what you have, not what you had. We can’t do anything about what has happened. But we can move out of “what was” and into “what can be”. We can stand tall in our truth and focus on what we can do today and tomorrow to make our life better. Our bodies have the incredibly potent capacity for self-healing and maintaining equilibrium during times of distress and disease. We must not become the obstacle that gets in the way.

What if you could learn how to calm your nervous system and restore balance with a practice that is imbued in spirituality (and backed by medical science) and learn how to trust yourself and your body’s innate wisdom?

Here, at Nirvana Wellbeing Retreat we offer the essentials – helping you get free from debilitating pain, improve your breathing, recover from injuries and dysfunction, and increase your energy, wellbeing and happiness.

Ayurveda and Yoga Retreats

These retreats typically include daily transformative teachings based on Ayurveda, the science of life.

Learn how to cultivate a feeling of wholeness and healing. Through Ayurvedic, food, natural herbal medicines, restorative yoga, breathwork, mindfulness, Yoga nidra, discussion, art, nature and more, you will

  • Harness accessible resources for resilient well-being
  • Restore and revitalise the body with the integrating traditions of Ayurveda, yoga and art.
  • Balance and soothe the nervous system with restorative practices including yoga nidra
  • Use meditation to reflect and connect to your most authentic self and heartfelt values.
  • Return home with a rich array of self-care practices that will ground and fortify you throughout the year.

Regardless of your personal health goals, the end destination is the same for all of us: Feeling better than ever. Longer retreats have the ability to add detox as an optional extra.

I want you to know it’s never too late to start. It is never too late to build a stronger health foundation. So whether you’re just starting your health journey, or just looking for your next best step, take action NOW while it’s on your mind. This is your opportunity to empower yourself, to transform your health, to reclaim your life. Don’t let it pass you by. Let’s improve your health today.

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Mindful Abundance

Mindful Abundance

This course could change everything for you! 

“In order to be a successful Yoga teacher and Ayurvedic practitioner and help people, I had to become a business owner” Shanti Gowans

To be a Naturopath, Nutritionist, Dietician, Masseur, Therapist, Ayurvedic practitioner, Yoga Teacher, or Healer of any description, is a very different profession, especially if you are old school

You didn’t go to school or university to become a business owner. You undertook training, became certified, and secured higher qualifications because you wanted to use your knowledge to help others. You want to help others to not be in pain, and empower them with education, tools, techniques and services towards their wellbeing. Whether you’re licensed and regulated, certified or have a master’s degree, you will need to figure out how to do what you want to do in a way that works for you.

In order to be a successful Yoga teacher and Ayurvedic practitioner and help people, I had to become a business owner. More specifically, I had to figure out how to work with the universe’s resources in a way that supports my values and lifestyle, to help me help them create a meaningful life. When I started out in Australia, (this was in 1972), all I wanted, or needed, was for someone to tell me that I was on the right track. There was no Google, YouTube, online spaces, businesses or social platforms that I could turn to for help. No role models. I made a promise to myself that when I succeeded, I would pay it forward so that professionals coming up after me would not have to feel as alone and as unsure as I felt.

I’ve made good on that promise. I set up Yoga classes and schools, wrote books, taught yoga on public television, went all out for the Australian government to accredit my Yoga Teacher Training courses, and Ayurvedic Practitioner training, to start other teachers and practitioners on their road to success. Touching many lives, paying it forward and giving back is part of my business model… it always has been and will continue to be. We are truly in this together. We are all here to transform lives for a living, all on our own terms. I am proof of that. Let us help you. You can’t model what you don’t see.

Here is something really special for you. I have developed an exceptional suite of comprehensive online professional development learnings especially for busy people, and have put together my findings in an amazing, groundbreaking course called MINDFUL ABUNDANCE. Best of all, you are not locked into inconvenient webinar times. Instead, with my course, you are in control of your own learning journey. This content is presented in digestible pieces, where you can dip in and out of it, as time permits.

https://learn.healthinstitute.edu.au/courses/mindful-abundance/

With this course material, you can gain an outstanding understanding of the cosmic laws, purify your thoughts, feelings and vibrations, and be able to unlock the limitless potential of your mind. You will be able to benefit from opportunities that open up to you because the entire context of your knowledge can be highly advanced by finding information that explains how the universe works.

  • Navigate the chaos of this crazy world
  • with powerful Cosmic principles and practices
  • to break free from the matrix of illusion
  • and rewire optimistic thinking so that you can
  • create your own world of
  • abundant health, wealth, and wisdom.

Take advantage of the special price offer $995,

This would be the best ever Christmas gift you could give or receive.

Choose to pay by PayPal or Credit/Debit card. We also offer Afterpay.

Will revert to $1550 after 25 December 2022.

Shanti Gowans

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Osteoporosis and Ayurveda

Bone is a dynamic living tissue. it is constantly being broken down and rebuilt, a process known as remodelling.

Peak bone mass is reached between the ages of 25 and 35 years. After 35, bone mass is stable until, in women, it starts to drop with menopause. 6-18% of women between 25-34 years of age have ‘abnormally low’ bone density. Hip-fracture rates for white women in the US and Britain begin to rise abruptly between the ages of 40-44 much earlier than menopause begins. This drop occurs more slowly in males.

Bones become porous, or less dense, with age. As we age, the mineral-rich, internal part of bone breaks down faster than it is rebuilt. It should not be treated as disease unless you experience one or following multiple symptoms over a period of time:

  • Bone fracture
  • A gradual loss of height
  • A rounding of the shoulders
  • Gum inflammation and loosening of the teeth
  • Acute lower backache
  • Swelling of a wrist after a minor fall or injury
  • Trouble with nail, hair, teeth, gums, joints, or back
  • Nocturnal leg cramps
  • Rheumatoid arthritis
  • Restless behaviour,

The word osteoporosis simply means ‘porous bones’. Persons with osteoporosis suffer from a loss in bone mass and bone strength at a higher rate than expected with aging. Their bones become weak and brittle which makes them more prone to fracture. Any bone can be affected by osteoporosis, but the hips, wrists and spine are the most common sites.

Ayurveda and Osteoporosis

From the Ayurvedic perspective, any vata imbalance or disease pattern in the bods indicated by any one of the symptoms such as stress, anxiety, constipation, dry skin, hypertension, restlessness, insomnia, PMS or many menstrual disorders, Irritable bowel syndrome and Inability to relax and so on. Some of the behavioural patterns that can create a vata imbalance in the body are:

  • when a person is under stress or reacting to stress with anxiety
  • physical exhaustion; mental strain and overwork without giving the body a chance to relax and rejuvenate
  • addictive patterns
  • lack of sleep
  • suffering emotionally from grief, fear or shock
  • travelling (flying or long car journeys)
  • stringent diets
  • eating cold, raw or dry foods frequently
  • living in a cold, dry and windy weather.

Osteoporosis is one of the natural processes that occur with age, however, vata body type individuals or people in the vata stage of life, are likely to experience loss of bone density at a higher rate. Consequently the risk for osteoporosis will be higher in a person of vata body, old people and women after menopausal age. For women, a regular menstrual cycle is important for building and maintaining bone strength throughout a woman’s reproductive years.

Risk Factors for Osteoporosis

Certain risk factors that increase the likelihood of developing and aggravating osteoporosis include:

  • Being female. Women are four times more likely to develop osteoporosis than men. Though most women start to think about bone loss only at menopause, it often begins years before. 50%of the bone loss over their lifespan is lost before menopause even begins. The reasons could include:
    • Women’s bones are generally thinner and lighter.
    • They live longer than men.
    • They have rapid bone loss at menopause due to a sharp decline of oestrogen.
    • Natural menopause before age 40;
    • A hysterectomy which includes removal of both ovaries with no hormone replacement therapy (HRT)
    • A lack of, or irregular menstrual flow.
    • Oestrogen/ progesterone deficiency
  • Having a thin, small framed body
  • Heredity and Race – the risk increases if there is a history of osteoporosis and/or bone fractures in your family. Some races, for example Caucasians are at a higher risk than Asians and African Americans.
  • Lack of physical activity especially activities such as walking, running, tennis and other weight-bearing exercises.
  • Lack of Calcium and Vitamin D, Magnesium and other mineral deficiencies from a modern diet of processed foods.
  • Cigarette smoking and Excessive Alcohol – Heavy drinkers and smokers often have poor appetite and poor nutrition.
  • Taking certain medicines such as corticosteroids (anti-inflammatory drugs used to treat asthma, arthritis, lupus, etc.) and aluminium containing antacids such as Rolaids or Di-Gel., anti-seizure drugs and overuse of thyroid hormones.
  • Hyperthyroidism, hyperparathyroidism, and certain forms of bone cancer, anorexia nervosa, scoliosis and gastrointestinal disease.
  • Malabsorption of nutrients as a result of antibiotic use
  • High Fat, high protein diet

Traditional Treatment includes:

  • Medical management, especially if you are at a high risk of getting the disorder. Doctor may prescribe hormone replacement therapy (HRT) and/or calcium. These are recommended to prevent fractures from osteoporosis if taken during or soon after the start of menopause and then on a continual basis. HRT does not rebuild bone, but it is supposed to prevent further bone loss. New research on HRT is bringing question mark on this method.
  • Surgery, such as hip replacement, if necessary.
  • Dietary and lifestyle measures.

Natural Dietary and Lifestyle Measures

Natural approaches to osteoporosis treatment are to focus on supporting the body’s dynamic, bone rebuilding process, and not on replacing the natural and healthy decline of oestrogen during menopause. To prevent or slow osteoporosis, take these steps now:

Consume a diet high in complex carbohydrate, and relatively low in fat and protein. 

If you are non-vegetarian, limit your servings of red meat to lean cuts, no more than three times per week (Red meat is very high in phosphorous, as is soda. High phosphorous intake extracts calcium from bones). To keep calcium/phosphorous levels in balance, concentrate on eating dark green, leafy vegetables.

Calcium

Plan to get enough calcium every day. If our diets were mostly whole grains, greens, beans and vegetables, our bones would be more apt to stay healthy on relatively less calcium, as long as we also exercised and got out in the sun for vitamin D. Some high calcium foods include: Milk, yogurt and cheeses. Soft-boned fish and shellfish, such as salmon with the bones, sardines and shrimp. Vegetables such as dark green, leafy vegetables, broccoli, kale, collards. Beans and bean sprouts, as well as tofu (soy bean curd, if processed with calcium). Calcium-fortified foods such as some orange juices, apple juices and ready-to-eat cereals and breads.

Vitamin C

is involved in collagen synthesis and repair and is found in Citrus fruits.

Magnesium

It is found in organically grown vegetables, whole grains, seaweed (kelp) and meats such as turkey. Over-consumption of processed food, such as refined grains or too few dark green leafy vegetables is usually the culprit in magnesium deficiency.

Boron

The minimum dose of boron needed per day is easily met with a daily diet rich in fruit, nuts and vegetables.

Beta Carotene

Vitamin A promotes a healthy intestinal epithelium and promotes strong joints, which is important for optimal absorption of nutrients. It is found in yellow and orange vegetables e.g. pumpkin, carrots, leafy vegetables and broccoli.

Exercise

The average Australian sits for 11 hours a day. This is what happens while you’re sitting:

  • Muscles deteriorate, fat loss slows and calorie burning drops to 1 calorie per minute
  • Blood flow dips, LDL and triglycerides clog your arteries and heart attack risk jumps by 125%
  • Sugar piles up in your blood, insulin skyrockets and diabetes risk shoots up by 90%.

Your body receives the signal that it’s time to shut down, so it starts preparing you for death. If we also sleep an average of 7 hours a day, that’s 18 hours of not moving. And since most of us are working those other 6 hours (or more), most of us can’t find the time to workout, burn fat, and prevent this bodily decay.
Yet, you must follow a program of regular, weight-bearing exercise at least three or four times a week. Beneficial examples include: walking, jogging, cycling, weight training, low-impact or non-impact aerobics, and anything that places weight on the bones, twenty minutes, five times per week, or thirty minutes three times per week.

Pay attention to your posture. Keep your back straight when you sit, stand and walk.

Take measures to prevent falls and injury to your bones.

Avoid

Do not smoke and limit alcohol consumption.

Smoking makes osteoporosis worse. Smokers, together with those who consume two or more alcoholic drinks daily, are at highest risk of osteoporosis. Smoking poisons the ovaries.

Avoid cola or soda and soft, fizzy drinks

These are too high in phosphate, which directly interferes with calcium absorption.

Ayurvedic Treatment for Osteoporosis

Ayurveda focuses on balancing the doshas, especially vata dosha, and ensuring that the tissues (dhatus) are free of toxcicity (ama), to enable the body’s homeostatic mechanisms more efficiently help our metabolism adjust to a natural aging process. When the body’s natural healing ability is strengthened, and causal and root imbalances in basic bodily functions are removed, the bone rebuilding process will be positively influenced.

Ayurveda recommends:

Detoxification and balancing the doshas, especially vata dosha, using Purvakarmaand Basti treatments.

The detoxification (panchakarma) treatment consists of internal oleation, namely snehana, fomentation, or bashpa swedana, lower back oil pooling, or kati basti, and a steady, thread-like stream of oil, poured on the forehead, known as shiro dhara. This is followed by an appropriate purge to remove all the offending, vitiated doshas from the body systems, then followed by basti with herbal oil to pacify vata (vata shamak or dashmoola) for the vitiated vata dosha.

Food supplements and rejuvenators such as Shatavari (Asparagus racemosus), Ashwagandha (Withania somnifera) and Bala (Sida cordifolia), Amalaki (Emblica officinalis) should be taken in the powdered form in the dose of 2-3gm daily.

Shatavari and vidari mixed in equal parts, or just shatavari taken on regular basis (1/2 tsp twice daily)
with warm milk, help to make up for oestrogen in the metabolic cycle. These herbs are food precursors of oestrogen and progesterone.

Self massage or abhyanga, using sesame oil, for vata pacification.

Ashokarishta

Ashoka bark has silica, sodium, potassium, phosphate, magnesium, iron, and calcium among others. It is used for many uterine disorders and is a good herb during the time of menopause.

Dashamularishta

Dashmoola is used for vata pacification.

These preparations should be taken after consulting an Ayurvedic consultant.

Daily chewing a handful of sesame seeds in the morning provides at least 1200 mg of natural calcium. These seeds won’t clog arteries, as dependence upon calcium from dairy products may do. One part black or white sesame seeds, half part shatavari, with ginger and raw sugar added to taste is good for the bones.

The vata pacifying diet includes warm, heavy, moist and slightly oily food that give you strength.

Frequent small meals, mildly spiced and with only a few different types of foods per meal are recommended.

– Don’t eat when you are nervous or worried.

– If possible eat with your friends/ family.

Amalaki is a rejuvenator (rasayana) for the bones, nourishing the bones, strengthening the teeth, causing hair and nails to grow. Five gm powder in one cup of water, twice a day is used as a general tonic.

Triphala can be used on regular basis as a tridoshic tonic.

Few diet/ lifestyle aspects to complement the beneficial effect of Ayurvedic Medicines:

– Consume more of calcium-rich foods such as milk and spinach, avoiding red meat at the same time.

– Nourish yourself with whole, natural foods.

– Avoid fats such as margarine and saturated fats such as cheese. Instead use ghee, butter or unsaturated fat such as sunflower and corn oils.

– Make exercise a daily routine (after consulting your doctor) to keep yourself fit

– Limit your intake of tea or coffee to a maximum of one or two cups daily, but avoid completely if possible.

– Practise yoga and meditation for calming effects and mind control. If osteoporosis has begun to develop, yoga as exercises should be done gently, with care, to overcome a real danger of breaking a bone.

– Develop a positive approach towards menopause and life in general.

– Avoid smoking and drinking alcohol.

– Excess Vata (air) may also be reduced to proper levels by having regularity of routine, providing the body adequate rest, meditation and using vata pacifying essential oils.

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Nirvana Detox Retreats JULY WINTER DETOX 2022

Nature Based Time-Out, Yoga and Renewal Retreats

Being immersed in nature is a wonderful place to focus on healing, wellbeing, peace of mind, and personal growth.

Urban living and contemporary lifestyles are associated with reduced contact with nature. Although not causal, this coincides with increasing rates of mental illness in the world. In addition, mid-pandemic, being cooped up at home, increases the problem.

Forest exposure can be used as part of a holistic and rounded approach to wellbeing. It is one of many ecosystem services that the environment provides for us.

During a time-out and yoga retreat at Nirvana you have an opportunity to restore, rejuvenate and rebalance with gentle, healing yoga, relaxation and breathing. Enjoy scrumptious Ayurvedic vegetarian meals. Perhaps spend a quiet day of reading. You will be able to enjoy the experience that best fits your needs. Your biggest to-do at our time-out and renewal retreat will be: nothing. Ayurvedic treatments and consultations are available.

Exceptional Wellbeing Detox Retreats

One of the main processes of healing the system in Ayurveda is cleansing. The increase of water and air pollutants, food contamination, pesticides and chemicals in our environment all play their part in depleting and damaging our systems. Our liver, kidneys, colon, skin, and lungs help expel unwanted substances from the body. However, when the amount of toxic substances in our body has overwhelmed its capacity, it’s time for the body to detox.

Our eating habits, lifestyle and environmental conditions can cause toxins to accumulate in the body and result in an imbalance of the tridoshas (the body’s functional aspects). Nirvana’s body purification therapy supports the body’s natural mechanism of excreting these toxins and purifying the whole body so that it regains its natural balance of Vata, Pitta and Kapha. The 10-day detox package is based on panchakarma (purification processes in the narrow sense) and includes herbal medicines, dietary tissue cleansing that results in purgation, various oil applications (snehanakarma) and sweat treatment (swedanakarma). (Detox: Add $100/day or $500/week.)

At a Nirvana ayurvedic detox retreat you will learn about connections between you and nature, your constitution at birth (prakruti), current state of health (vikruti), the three keys to mastering health for you (doshas), and about a disturbance in the force (ama) and detect physical body ama on your tongue and how it impacts your health.

Ayurvedic Cooking Retreats

Discover secrets from the ayurvedic kitchen. Learn how to cook sumptuous plant-based meals for aspiring vegans and vegetarians.

Eating well is not about deprivation. Our physical and mental health has its foundations in the food we cook and eat.

You cannot buy, beg, borrow or steal health. It is nature’s gift to you. Everything that we eat and drink is a factor that influences our very existence, our constant, unhampered growth, health and wellbeing, energy, colour, strength, immunity and proper functioning of our sense organs. Improper diet is the cause of disturbances and illness. The contemporary (Western) way of sustaining our bodies in a state of reasonable performance is by the use of ‘force’, using medicines, drugs, even large doses of vitamins and other ‘natural’ ingredients to enforce the will of the mind over the body. The Ayurvedic way is to work with the body to ensure that the body has all it needs to perform at its peak, through correct diet and lifestyle.

The purpose is simple: to help you understand and cook food that is delicious and nourishing. You will learn how to create authentic Ayurvedic vegetarian food. From preparation of ingredients, right through to the cooking process and then to the best part – eating – you will experience it all first hand.

Nirvana Detox Retreats – WINTER DETOX
Friday, 1 July 2022 – Sunday, 10 July 2022. 10 days / 9 nights

“Exceptional Wellbeing. Integrating body, mind and spirit.”

From $3,150 (detox extra)

Nirvana Time-Out, Yoga and Renewal Retreats
Friday, 1 July 2022 – Sunday, 3 July 2022. 3 days, 2 nights

“Introduction to Ayurveda, the Art of Being and Science of Living.”

From $695

Nirvana Ayurvedic Cooking Retreats
Sunday, 3 July 2022 – Friday, 8 July 2022. 6 days, 5 nights

“Cook, Taste, Digest, Heal and cultivate an appetite for life.”

From $1,750

Nirvana Time-Out, Yoga and Renewal Retreats
Friday, 8 July 2022 – Sunday, 10 July 2022. 3 days, 2 nights

“Relax, Rejuvenate and Restore – living better longer with self-care”

From $695

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3 types of psychophysiological constitution: Doshas

3 types of psychophysiological constitution: Doshas

by Shanti Gowans

In the human body, various anatomical structures and physiological processes have common attributes, and are closely influenced by each other. Such related structures and functions are grouped into three governing principles in Ayurveda. These three psycho-physiological governing factors are called doshas. The Sanskrit names for these three governing factors or doshas are Vata, Pitta and Kapha.

VATA

The Vata principle includes the complete nervous system, some aspects of the endocrine glandular system which coordinate the metabolism and most of the sense organs. Vata structures and functions are also responsible for all the communications within the human being as well as the communication with the outer universe. Vata deals with transportation and movements within a person’s body and mind. Vata entities are responsible for the pumping action of the heart, the breathing process in the lungs, the peristaltic movement of the intestines, and all the movements of the bones and muscles.

Vata is also responsible for mental functions such as intuition, imagination, resilience, sensitivity, spontaneity, indecisiveness and emotions such as exhilaration, fear, insecurity and doubt. In lay terms, Vata represents the biological principles of air and space. Vata structures and functions usually have qualities such as dry, cold, light, quick, rough, unstable and subtle.

PITTA
Pitta includes all the digestive enzymes secreted within our gastrointestinal system, the cellular enzymes and the stimulating hormones. Pitta structures and functions are responsible for all the digestion, absorption, assimilation, heat regulation, sweating and metabolism going on in the body and the mind. It also governs skin complexion, visual perception, and the process of understanding.

Pitta dosha is responsible for mental functions such as intelligence, confidence, enterprise, organisation and emotions such as joy, excitement, courage, anger, jealousy and hatred. Pitta may be described as the biological principle of fire and water. The structures and functions of Pitta have qualities such as hot, moist, light, fluid, sour-smelling, sharp and penetrating.

KAPHA

Kapha structures and functions are responsible for the growth, stability, lubrication and storage within the body. Kapha includes the musculoskeletal frame, composition of all joints, the process of tissue building, wound healing and various accumulations. Kapha dosha is also responsible for mental functions such as memory, tranquillity, faith, forgiveness, devotion, and emotions such as love, affection, calmness, patience, sympathy, attachment, greed and lethargy. Those with predominant Kapha are more susceptible to weight gain.

Kapha is the biological principle of water and earth. The Kapha structures and functions have qualities such as heavy, cold, wet, slow, steady, soft, oily, sweet and smooth.

Of all the three governing factors, Vata is fundamentally the most important, in that it coordinates both Pitta and Kapha. Vata govern all the general physical processes. Imbalances in Vata are therefore more serious in nature. Kapha provides the material foundation and support for both Vata and Pitta.

LOCATIONS of VATA, PITTA and KAPHA

The structures and functions of Vata, Pitta and Kapha are spread throughout the body, but in general, Kapha is more predominant in the area above the heart level. Important locations of Kapha are chest, throat, head, nose, sinuses, tongue, stomach, lymph and fat tissues. Within the digestive system, the primary location of Kapha is the stomach.

Pitta is generally more predominant in the area between the heart and the umbilicus. Important locations of Pitta are the small intestine, stomach, liver, gall bladder, pancreas, sweat glands, sebaceous glands, blood and organs of vision. Within the digestive system, the primary location of Pitta is the small intestine.

Vata is generally more predominant in the areas below the umbilicus level. Important locations of Vata are the colon, thighs, hips, bones, ears, and organs of touch. Within the digestive system, the primary location of Vata is the colon.

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Ayurvedic Training 2017

Ayurvedic Training 2017

New intake for Diploma of Ayurvedic Lifestyle Consultation starts Monday 10 July 2017. (Accredited Course Code HLT 52615, CRICOS code 089840B) at the Health Institute Australia, is a 600-hour Government Accredited, Austudy and CRICOS Approved Course. This course is designed for health seekers and is the foundational study course for Ayurvedic practitioners. Tutorials and attendance will be on Monday, Wednesday and Thursday.

New intake for Advanced Diploma in Ayurveda with Dr. Shilpi Boseroy BAMS starts Monday 10 July 2017. (Accredited Course Code HLT 62615, CRICOS code 089841A) from the Health Institute Australia is an 1200-hour Government Accredited, Austudy and CRICOS Approved Course. This course is the study course for becoming an Ayurvedic practitioner. Tutorials will be on Thursday mornings 10am-1pm. Fridays 10am – 5 pm.

Learn the art of Ayurvedic Vegetarian Cooking at the Health Institute Australia, Southport campus.
Tuesdays 4-5pm. Fee $60 AAPA members 10% discount. (07) 5531 0511

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