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Looks like you are currently in Finland but have requested a page in the United States site. Would you like to change to the United States site? Angela Hope-Murray. Ayurveda is an ancient system of prevention and treatment of illness by maintaining balance in the body, mind, and spirit according to your individual body type. Ayurveda For Dummies provides you with a comprehensive introduction to this area of complementary medicine, considering the origins and history of Ayurveda as well as practical guidance on utilizing the correct balance of nutrition and exercise, herbal remedies, yoga, and Ayurvedic massage to treat ailments and maintain a healthy, happy lifestyle.


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Ayurveda For Dummies provides you with a comprehensive introduction to this area of complementary medicine, considering the origins and history of Ayurveda as well as practical guidance on utilizing the correct balance of nutrition and exercise, herbal remedies, yoga, and Ayurvedic massage to treat ailments and maintain a healthy, happy lifestyle.

This hands-on, friendly guide helps you understand your body type and restore balance to your life using the principles of Ayurveda. Bequeathed to us by the Rishi holy men who lived in the Indus Valley more than five thousand years ago, Ayurveda is a holistic approach to disease prevention and treatment.

Recognising that each of us is unique, it aims to achieve and maintain optimal health and vitality through finding the right combination of diet, exercise, massage, yoga and herbal remedies for each body type. Written by a registered Ayurvedic practitioner, this is a thoroughly modern introduction to maintaining a happy, healthy and long life the Ayurvedic way. Convert currency. Add to Basket. Book Description John Wiley and Sons, Condition: New. New Book. Shipped from UK. Established seller since Seller Inventory FW More information about this seller Contact this seller.

Language: English. Brand new Book. Rebalance your mind, body and spirit the natural way! These channels function to produce reproductive tissues and carry menstrual blood. They initiate the ability to produce milk during pregnancy, and their function is to carry milk to the baby. Malnutrition is the condition that upsets their ability to function.

It keeps your skin smooth and oiled. The seat is found in your sebaceous glands and hair follicles, and the openings are located all over your skin. The svedavaha srota helps you sweat, which is how you regulate your body temperature, and helps you eliminate bodily wastes and water. It gets disturbed by excessive exercise, anger, grief and fear, and when you expose yourself to excessive heat. This srota is based in your colon, rectum and caecum large bowel , with the main opening located at your anus.

Ayurveda For Dummies – Angela Hope-Murray [EN] (2013, brožovaná)

This channel operates in your large intestine, where you absorb vital minerals and form faeces. This system also provides you with strength and support, and has a grounding effect. If you feel intense fear or are overly anxious, your purishavaha srota gets off-balance. The main opening is located in the urethra — the point of exit for urine. The channels are the ureter the tubes that propel urine from the kidneys to the bladder , urethra and bladder.

This srota regulates your blood pressure, fluid and electrolyte balance. Its rhythm becomes upset when you suppress the urge to urinate or eat too many foods high in oxalic acid spinach is one. If you have sex while having the urge to use the toilet, you can cause an imbalance and create upsets like cystitis. They find their seat in your heart, brain and the energy centres in your body known as chakras.

The senses perceive and react to stimuli. This also causes the marma points rather like acupuncture points on your body to react. Manovaha srotas operate throughout the body and help regulate emotions and their related systems, including the realms of discrimination, feeling, thinking, desire and communication. They become harmed by excessively loud noises, suppressed emotions and intense focus — characteristic of a vata lifestyle, which leads to anxiety, dryness and erratic digestion.

Like radio waves, these forces operate within your nerves nadis and channels known as srotas. This chapter gives you a brief outline of how Ayurveda perceives the energy in your body on a subtle level, and how the food that you eat and thoughts that you think translate into your cellular and extra-cellular make-up. This is pretty esoteric stuff, but vital for your understanding of Ayurveda. Pinpointing Three Essential Forces The end products of all the food, images, air and fluids that you take in on a daily basis ultimately end up as ojas, tejas and prana — three forces that are akin to the finest elements of your immune system.

The more you have of them, the less likely you are to get sick. I explain each in this section. It endows you with strong immunity and vigour. Without it, you would cease to live. Ayurveda identifies two types of ojas: Para ojas, which resides in your heart and maintains its activity. You also derive ojas from pure bliss or ananda — that which makes you feel happy and content wherever you find yourself. In other words, the more you connect to that pure centre of your being where peace resides, the more ojas you put in the bank.

Meditation is a great way to get there, and I explore meditation and its many benefits in Chapter 6. Although ojas is a benefit to your body, too much can lead to trouble. If it increases faster than your body can process it, ojas is converted to ama toxins and can then incite issues such as high cholesterol and increased blood sugar.

If, on the other hand, you lack ojas, you leave your immune system weakened, which of course leaves you open to all kinds of illness. You might notice that your level of ojas is low when you have dry skin or feel an unusual level of anxiety or fear. Targeting tejas Tejas is connected to the fiery principle in your body — agni — but operates on a more subtle level. Visualise tejas as the container for agni. It works in many ways like a director, keeping order within your body through processes like regulating body temperature, guiding cell function, and otherwise maintaining balance.

Tejas is the substance that enables you to digest food, emotions, ideas and thoughts. Tejas helps to create and protect your ojas, which in turn supports prana see the next section in its work to defend and maintain the respiratory function of your cells. If the force of tejas is low, then your body produces too much ojas. On the other hand, if the flame of your tejas is too high, it burns ojas and therefore leaves you open to disease.

Tejas also contributes to the cellular intelligence that maintains the sizes and shapes of your bodily components. It dictates how your hair grows and the order of your cells within your organs and other structures. This same cellular intelligence enables wounds to heal. When someone is described as enlightened, they have tejas to thank.

For those who can see auras, a halo is the manifestation of this light. Promoting prana Prana orchestrates and animates your existence. The prana shakti, or force in your body, is created by the food you eat and the air you inhale into your lungs. Prana governs all the motor and sensory nerve transmissions in your body. All cognitive functions of your mind are related to pranic waves, as is the motion of your heart, which pumps vital nutrients around your body.

Cosmic prana abounds in the universe, which is why all of creation works as one harmonious whole. Prana is made up of air and ether elements, which gives it great qualities of expansion. Refer to Chapter 2 to find out more about the building blocks of existence. You can experience this expansion in meditation when you reach a stage of stillness and experience a sense of dissolution of all boundaries. The seat of your emotional experiences is your lungs, which is where prana is garnered from the atmosphere.

Kapha emotions like greed and attachment are stored in the lower lobes, while anger and hatred connected to pitta dosha sit in the middle region. Finally, fear and sadness attributed to vata dosha are stored in the upper lobes of your lungs. No wonder that Ayurveda puts so much importance on the smooth operating of the lungs and the practice of pranayama breathing techniques. Chapter 14 tells you more about pranayama. These channels are practically untraceable by direct empirical observation, rather like the meridians in Chinese medicine.

The chakra system see the following section is located along this nadi. The left channel is more cooling and passive, while the right is warming and generally more active. You can learn to use this knowledge to help you in your daily life, by the practice of pranayama breathing exercises , which I describe in Chapter Meditation and a balanced lifestyle clear and bring harmony to this network of channels and help unblock it if needs be. Ghandhari nadi relates to your left ear and ends in your right big toe.

It also gives you the wisdom and capacity to speak. Discovering the Dhatus: Building Blocks of Your Body The dhatus are the original building blocks of all the tissues in your body. They make up your physical body, the one you touch and see. I explore your other bodies — yes, you have more! Dhatus are the basic types of cells which make up your body: lymph, blood, bone, fat, muscle, nerve and reproductive cells. Like a roman fountain, the effective production of the first dhatu leads to the creation of the next one, and so on down the line until your reproductive tissue and ojas are produced.

An example of this is your teeth, which are a by- product of bone tissue. So the health of your bones can be observed by looking at your teeth. Each dhatu has its own agni, which is the fuel that helps to generate tissue elements that make up your unique physiology. When dhatus are formed, waste products are also produced. When the srotas channels — see Chapter 2 are operating optimally, they carry these waste products away, otherwise the waste creates ama toxins; explained fully in Chapter 5 and disease in your system.

It feeds all the other tissues of the body. Rakta dhatu: Rakta refers to blood. It lubricates all your muscles, joints and ligaments, and acts as an insulator. The chakras are nodal points where your mental, physical and energy body interact the next section explains these bodies. As many as of these centres of awareness exist, but I focus on the seven main chakras, which are located along your spine. The system of the chakras is related to the mano vaha srotas, the channels which carry your mental faculties see Chapter 2. They can become perturbed by negative feelings and create mental ama or toxins.

This ama can be stored and may block the movement of energy in the chakra system. The workings of your endocrine and glandular system are intimately linked by a nerve plexus to each of your chakras, shown in Figure A plexus, also known as a chiasma, is where a network of nerves meet up with your lymphatic and blood vessels. The chakra system passes an electric current from one organ to another in order to maintain balance throughout your system.

Table shows you a breakdown of the elements of the seven chakras. Each one is numbered in order of density, so the earth element is number 1 and ether is number 5. Each chakra has a vibration which resonates with a sound; these sounds mantras are also listed. You can chant these sounds and use them to meditate on to purify a centre. The chakras also have direction of flow, so by way of example, the 1st and 2nd chakras govern the flow of the downwards energy force known as apana explained further in Chapter 7. This is where the disc is moving of meditation and yoga.

See Chapters 6 and 7 the most, and relates to the world of action. Through However, located in the centre, stillness meditation, you eventually find sat chit ananda resides but is largely ignored. Then we become knowledge, consciousness and bliss within out of balance and get sick and stressed. You yourself. Perhaps a personal example will suffice. For years I suffered with almost continuous sore throats, because I found it very difficult to really express my needs. Through yoga, meditation and psychotherapy, I found my voice, so to speak, and the throat conditions no longer trouble me.

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Placing the Pancha Koshas: The Invisible Coverings According to Ayurveda, the human form is composed of three bodies: the gross body physical , which you can touch and feel; the subtle body mental , which is connected to your nervous system; and the causal body energy , which links you to the astral world.

As well as this, your body is made up of five envelopes, or sheaths — called pancha koshas — creating layers of decreasing density, as shown in Figure According to Ayurvedic thinking, you are, in fact, spirit in matter. These sheaths sustain you in the corporeal world until the day you die. Here, circulating air in the form of prana finds its home. This is also where the vital pranas see Chapter 2 vitalise the mind and body by connecting the senses.

Chapter 3: Uncovering the Subtle Energy Systems 37 The third and fourth layers share an intimate connection. These two sheaths are closely tied to the ajna chakra in your pineal area. Ayurveda attempts to direct you towards sattwa guna, or the energy of balance, purity and truth, via meditation, yoga and dietary principles. This in turn benefits your anamaya kosha which, once vitalised by appropriate food choices, brings more sattwa harmony to the next covering, and so on until all the koshas are clear and functioning optimally.

This strategy eventually leads you to live in a state of perfect bliss. Ayurveda sees illness as a product of your lifestyle more than an invasion by an outside force, and different constitution types depend on different approaches to maintain a healthy balance. This chapter contains information essential to understanding how to put the advice in this book to work for you.

If you want to get the most out of this book, read this chapter and determine what type of constitution you have. This chapter arms you with all you need to know to get the best out of the book regardless of your diet and lifestyle choices. The sensory inputs of your mother had a great effect on you before you were born.

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Whether your mother was contented or conflicted, listened to Mozart or heavy metal — all these factors can result in an increase of agitation and aggravate vata dosha see the next section for an explanation of the doshas. Other influences are hereditary traits — both strengths and weaknesses — along with the age and fitness of your parents. More esoteric influences, such as the position of the planets at the time of birth, also influenced your constitution at the time of your birth, along with the seasonal influences and the condition of the sperm and ova at the moment of conception.

Therefore they can very easily go out of balance. Mentally, you can deal with stress well but are susceptible to depression. You have a tendency towards lymphatic problems. You can determine your constitution type in more detail by going through each table in this chapter and putting a tick next to any description you think applies to you. If you think that none of the descriptions in one row apply to you, ignore that line or ask how a friend perceives you.

If you decide that the characteristics in two of the columns pertain to you, then tick them both. Checking your physical type You can get started determining your doshic profile by looking at your physical traits. Table outlines the physical features of each doshic type. Table goes more deeply into the physiological traits of each dosha. Getting your finger on the pulse An experienced Ayurvedic practitioner can use Ayurveda describes the rhythm and course of the pulse to confirm your constitutional profile.

Try to get a sense of picture of who you are. It represents the rhythm the temperature, speed and type of movement of your life, because all your spiritual, mental of your pulse. Your index finger in this position and physical experiences are embedded is connected to vata dosha, and the movement within it.

Now lift your index finger Taking your pulse holds no mystery — all it and use your middle finger, which falls just one demands from you is practice. The best time to finger-width beneath it. This is where the pitta take your pulse is first thing in the morning on dosha resides; the movement here is like a frog an empty stomach. Now place it to the constitutional tables in this chapter. Sattwa is connected to pitta and associated with the ability to concentrate for long periods. Finally, tamas is connected to kapha and can make an individual slow and deliberate with a tendency to dislike change.

Table outlines the various psychological traits associated with the three doshas. The column with the most ticks is your primary dosha; the one with the second-most number of ticks is your secondary dosha. If one dosha stands out in your analysis, follow the instructions for your diet and lifestyle listed in the rest of the book.

If, on the other hand, you have a fairly even score of two doshas, follow the diet and lifestyle changes listed for when one of the two doshas predominates. This is also true for those of you who are fairly evenly balanced between the three, or tridoshic. In selecting the right diet, you can always find tastes which are common to both doshas; for example, a naturally sweet taste pacifies both vata and pitta. Discover a daily routine to keep you in tip-top health. So what is health? In Ayurvedic terms, health is harmony. The concept of health gets a little more interesting from here. With Ayurveda, wellness is the ever-changing movement towards actualising your full potential while keeping in mind your abilities and individual needs.

Vagbhata, a physician in the Middle Ages, said that health is a state of equi- librium of the doshas whereby: Your agni or fires are samavasta in equilibrium. The process of elimination of waste products of your body is regular. In this state, the soul uses your and healthy life. Suppress your desires body as a temple in which to realise itself and to and you wind up a fully coiled spring that help you attain four principal objectives: can suddenly release with undesirable consequences. This is the culmination of very difficult. You can have different dharmas for different stages of your life.

In other words, your body is in a state of functional equilibrium if your hunger, appetite and digestion are not impaired or faulty, and your body can easily and regularly eliminate wastes such as sweat, faeces and urine. Your mind comes into play, too, before you can be said to be fit: true health encompasses a tran- quil soul and mind, and sense organs that function efficiently. In this chapter, I explore the progress of disease and give tips to keep you healthy. Discovering Ama: Its Journey through the Body Because a large part of health is the absence of disease, understanding how and why illness happens is important.

The nature of disease is known as nidana in Sanskrit or pathology in the West. Anything that exists in a state of incomplete transformation is volatile, and ama tends to accumu- late as toxins in your system. The result is amaya, or disease caused by ama. Examples of this are joint pain when ama accumulates in the junctions between your bones, and mucous when your nose becomes blocked. In Western medical terms, ama equates to: Atheroma: Plaques of cholesterol in the arteries.

Keloid: Tissue that causes overgrowth of scar tissues. Vata dosha has the attributes of the wind and can, like the wind that you observe in nature, be increased, decreased, deviated or obstructed. Derangements like these eventually lead to mental imbalance, which promotes sensory deprivation or excess, creating fresh disease in an ever-increasing spiral. An example of this is long-term, unremitting stress, when you become agitated and unsettled. Over time, this can lead you to make poor food choices in an attempt to pacify the feelings.

This in turn can give you slow digestion, and then you start to accumulate toxins in your system. Further down the line, you gain weight and, if you continue down that path, it can lead to high choles- terol, hypertension and heart disease. One of its common and most important effects is to diminish the digestive processes and therefore the transforma- tive actions that enable your body to produce new tissue.

An Introduction to Ayurveda - The Three Doshas (Vata, Pitta, Kapha)

Eventually, ama can mix with the doshas and manifests as disease. This is when signs and symptoms arise. Answer the questions in Table about signs and symptoms so that you can determine whether you may have ama in your system.

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Fill in the short question- naire in Table to help you find out. I need a dose of caffeine to get started. I feel mentally dull, lack enthusiasm, and am easily fatigued. I often experience food as tasteless and have a very small appetite. I regularly suffer a feeling of heaviness and indigestion shortly after eating.

My stools are heavy and sink, and they can smell unpleasant. I have a lot of mucus and tend to get many colds over the year. I often feel a sense of heaviness in my body, as though it has a blockage somewhere. I tend to get constipation. I often feel the need to spit. I also encourage you to enlist the help of a qualified practitioner who can really guide you.

Tracing the Path of Disease In general, disease happens slowly. The development of disease is known in Sanskrit as samprapti, which means the birth of pain, and in Western medi- cine as pathogenesis. The strength of Ayurveda lies in the fact that it can address an illness at any stage. Each disease follows its own prescribed route because of causative factors such as inappropriate diet and seasonal indis- cretions, like eating ice-cream in the winter when you have a cold.

In the upcoming sections, I illustrate the six stages of disease. Accumulation: The start of discomfort Accumulation, or sanchaya, is when your doshas become imbalanced. One or other dosha begins to increase within its own site, creating disparities. Temporary disparities are normal, as long as the doshas return to their main homes — vata in the colon, pitta in the small intestine, and kapha in the stomach. As soon as you observe this fact, you realise that kapha dosha is on the increase in your system.

The remedy is simple: just lighten your system by drinking ginger tea and abstaining from food until your appetite is restored. However, your body may be so toxic with ama that it no longer operates correctly. In this case, you begin to crave more of the activity or the foods that caused the problem in the first place.

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Never wait to treat an imbal- ance, but start straight away to do something about it. Part III gives you all you need to know to stay in balance. Chapter 5: Ease and Disease: Health According to Ayurveda 55 Aggravation: Things not quite right During the aggravation, or prakopa, stage, the dosha begins to move in more pronounced ways: Vata dosha moves upwards into the higher part of the colon.

However, a friend invites you over in the evening and cooks a Mexican bean dish laced with Tabasco, which you wash down with tequila. You really need to take action now, because this is the point just before the aggravated dosha leaves your gastrointestinal tract, after which you may need medical assistance. Overflow: Circulation through the system The overflow or prasara stage is when the disturbed doshas start to spread around your body via the circulatory system. They settle first in places of previous weakness, like those that have experienced trauma.

Once the dosha has entered these spaces it invests the tissues with its qualities. For example, when excess kapha dosha enters your lym- phatic system, you experience swelling of the legs and ankles. Chapter 5: Ease and Disease: Health According to Ayurveda 57 Relocation: Finding a new home During the relocation or sthana samsraya stage, circulating dosha begins to merge with tissues — in an old injury or other site of weakness. Kapha moving from its home results in congestion and heaviness. Each disease sends a different signal. For example, in the relocation stage, diabetes makes itself known through increased thirst and urination.

At this stage, you really need to seek medical attention from your GP to stop things getting worse. Manifestation: Symptoms brought forth At the manifestation or vyakti stage, the disease is an entity and has a definite course. It shows signs and symptoms that make its diagnosis beyond doubt. At this stage, your disease acquires a name. During this stage, the site of an illness becomes clear. These are secondary to the initial problem; osteoporosis, for example, can cause frac- tures of the bones, because it thins bone tissue. Diet and lifestyle are the main components of how and whether disease gets a chance to wreak havoc within your body.

In Ayurvedic terms, the lifestyle choices you make balance or excite your doshas. Doshic imbalance then leaves you open to disease. Broadly classified, three major causes of doshic imbalance exist, which I explain in the next sections. This kind of situation, though, always provides early warnings for you to act upon, but if your mind is clouded by tamas inertia or over-stimulated with rajas activity — refer to Chapter 2 for more on tamas and rajas , you ignore the red lights. This is when your ego blocks common sense. Your immune system is eavesdropping on your mind. So the more clarity you have in the relationship with your own inner wisdom, the greater the chance of your mind working in harmony with your bodily functions.

The flipside is that if you ignore your inner wisdom, your body can become imbalanced in ways that lead to disease. This quality of serenity leads you to the right actions, such as avoiding smoking, drugs and over-indulgence in activities which impair your health.

Modern science seems have difficulty detecting back and white con- to support the view that your senses affect trast differences, making their world literally your health; in studies such as the work by Yale greyer. Suppressing your natural urges is another way that your inner wisdom comes into play. If, for example, you want to cry or need to urinate, but hold back on these urges, you upset the energy systems in the body.

Like anything, the effects of wear and tear over time take their toll and give rise to disorder and disease. Osteoarthritis, for example, is caused by plain old wear and tear on the joints. Time also has an important effect in terms of seasons and weather. Chapter 9 tells you more about eating according to the seasons. Sensory indiscretions Your senses help you navigate the world and can very decidedly affect how you function within it. You reach out to the world using your senses as anten- nae, and their feedback to your brain determines in large part how you oper- ate in it.

When you misuse your senses, by listening to very loud music for an extended time, for example, you upset their balance. Doing so inhibits your ability to move gracefully through the world. The end result can often be disease. On a daily basis, you may consume a diet of hoardings, magazines and televi- sion. Your nostrils are assailed by a vast array of natural, artificial and some- times overpowering smells, while your taste buds are bombarded and your ears are incessantly tuned in to the noise of traffic and other sounds.

Your senses are coping with far more than they were designed for. In the following section, I offer tips for taking care of your senses. Properly respected and taken care of, they can bring great happiness to your life. But you might be thwart- ing or harming them without even realising it. Check out the following tips to discover the factors in your sensory life that you can adjust.

You can modify most of these elements with very little effort, and may see great benefits from small changes. Look for areas where you have room for improvement, and choose a few to actively work on. Nurturing your hearing Making sure your ears are a swift conduit for sound means avoiding loud noise and caring for your ears.

Low- and high-frequency sounds can increase vata dosha and your ability to handle stress. Meditation brings many life-changing benefits, which you find out about in Chapter 6. Embrace periods of quiet as often possible. Chapter 5: Ease and Disease: Health According to Ayurveda 61 Use a couple of drops of sesame oil in your ears each day.

Turn down the car stereo after you leave the motorway. Seeing your world clearly Because so much of what people absorb comes through sight, taking good care of your eyes is a critical but easy practice. Trying to make sure the things you set your eyes on are pleasant is a further way to support your well-being. Have regular eye exams. Lack of full-spectrum light into your eyes can lead to depression and headaches.

Work in a well-lit room using full-spectrum lighting. If your eyes are strained, rest them or use palming.


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To soothe your eyes, briskly rub your palms together, then cup them over your closed eyes. Feel the heat from your hands, then open your eyes and enjoy the restful darkness of your palms. Computer vision syndrome is taking its toll on eye health. Try to look away from your screen every 20 minutes. Create beauty in your surroundings. Keep fresh flowers and plants in your home.

Get at least 20 minutes of full-spectrum light every day. Lack of natural light can lead to depression and lowered vitamin D and melatonin levels. Take good care of it by giving it attention in the following ways: Give and receive touch. Stimulating the receptors in your skin by massage induces deep relaxation.

Human touch can be one of the best stress busters. Regularly apply oil to your skin. Sesame oil is a good all-purpose oil. In general, wear natural fibres next to your skin. Your skin is a large organ of nutrition in your body, so putting unsuitable materials on it transfers them directly to your bloodstream. Avoid exposure to midday summer sunlight. Keeping your nose in order Where would you be without your ability to tell whether the yogurt had spoiled? Or your ability to breathe, for that matter? A few easy practices keep your nose functioning well: Use a neti pot regularly to cleanse your nose.

Head to Chapter 14 to find out how to use a neti pot. Put a couple of drops of oil or ghee in your nose every day. Avoid using strong-smelling perfumes and body products. Fresh scented flowers are another nice way to achieve this effect. Avoid using corrosive chemicals and detergents in your home.

Bringing general health to your sense of taste and diet How satisfied your food makes you feel depends in part on the tastes you choose; your ability to taste those flavours is therefore an important determi- nant of how food functions in your body. Ensuring that your digestive system is in a good state for making use of that food is also important. The following tips address both of these aspects of your diet: Use a tongue scraper daily. Gentle scraping stimulates your internal organs and improves your oral hygiene.

Drink enough fluid to keep your urine pale yellow. Make sure that you keep your fluids up when you exercise or when the weather is hot. Vata and pitta people need more fluid than kapha individuals. Drink only two cups of regular tea or coffee per day. Most herbal teas are naturally caffeine- free and so are okay to drink throughout the day. Eat little meat. If you do eat meat, buy organic. Meat raised in a humane way is not only far tastier, it has also had less exposure to manmade chemicals such as antibiotics.

Include as many flavours and textures in your diet as possible. Have fewer than five alcoholic beverages per week. Government guidelines state a maximum of 14 units per week for females and 21 units for males. Those units are spread across the week, so no saving it all up for the weekend! The chapters in Part III give you heaps of advice about diet. In general, consume whole grains and unrefined foods. Whenever possible, consume organic and free-range food.

Using organic oils is especially important, because oils are fat-soluble, and therefore their harmful resides are stored deep in your tissues. Match your food to the season. So encourage the opposite qualities by eating warm, cooked food. It also has a detrimental effect on valuable enzymes. Check in with yourself and see how hungry you are, and eat accordingly.

Limit frozen, tinned and processed foods. Take a day to fast or eat lightly on a regular basis. Ayurveda suggests fasting as a first line of treatment. Thoroughly chew food before swallowing. It also helps valuable enzymes in the mouth mix with your food and convert starches into sugars. Many people eat to mollify emotions such as frustration and loneliness. Doing so inhibits digestion, and so your body forms ama. Head to Part III for a wealth of information on getting the most from your diet.

To be close to the day means you are in touch with the cycles of the earth, moon and sun, as well as other planets on a more subtle level. If all that seems a bit airy-fairy to you, just observe how a full moon affects the tides and how sunspot activity affects electrical systems. An unde- niable connection exists between us and the elements of our solar system. Health maintenance forms one of the backbones of Ayurveda, which empha- sises harmonising with natural rhythms and the influence that lifestyle has on the doshas your constitution; see Chapter 2. The Ayurvedic rishis the wise ones, who I tell you about in Chapter 1 considered the daily routine to be the most important ingredient of longevity.

Many people are in need of the harmony that the daily routine helps create. For example, the number of new cancer cases now stands at 12 million per year — an increase of 20 per cent in less than a decade. This particular chapter is really important, as following the daily routine can help allay ill-health and may prevent some of the damage caused by poor diet and lifestyle.

Consultations peak five The small change in gravitational effect may to six days after a full moon. Dust mites are also more active, and tiger prawns seem to eat more during a full moon. The organs of your body create a wonderful harmony, but when you lose the connection to daily rhythms and seasonal changes, you begin to get that not-quite-right feeling.

In this chapter I offer advice designed to keep you in harmony. You may want to implement all of the directives listed, or you can simply determine which are the most suitable for your lifestyle and what feels right for you personally. To make the most of each stage of your daily routine, please refer to Chapter 4 for more information on your individual constitution.