Spring, Allergens & Ayurveda

Spring, Allergens and Ayurveda

 

Spring flowers, ragweed, dust, mold or pet dander can cause your immune system to overreact to harmless natural substances. The result can too commonly be allergies. Millions each year suffer from an overactive immune response to dust and pollen in the air.

It’s not what you are breathing – it is your body’s response to it! Instead of reserving its immune response for viruses and bacteria, your body sounds a false alarm when exposed to a certain food, pet dander, or pollen — and tells the immune system to attack. Sneezing, nasal congestion and itchy, watery eyes; indigestion; swelling or skin rashes — these are some of the all-too-familiar results.

According to Ayurveda, accumulated toxins (ama) prevent your immune system from functioning normally and cause the over-reaction; the result – allergies. Ayurveda suggests a multi-faceted approach — adjustments in lifestyle and diet, and specific Ayurvedic herbal supplements.

Herbs for Spring Immunity

Ayurveda has deep regard for the intelligence of the immune system, and offers a sophisticated in-depth body of botanical knowledge and lifestyle tips, centuries old, supporting it. For example, certain Ayurvedic herbs will help support your body’s natural response to allergens by helping to eliminate existing toxins and, at the same time, promote a healthy response to harmless allergens. The herbs also work to support the healthy functioning of your liver. As your body’s natural filtration system, your liver filters toxins and chemicals from the food you eat, the water you drink and the air you breathe.

Let’s discuss the Ayurveda lifestyle approach to Allergies.

Uphold Immune Strength

Supporting the body’s immune system to quell its overreaction to allergens is exactly what  Ayurveda suggests as the long-term, effective solution to a healthy response to allergens. Diet, exercise and many lifestyle changes can play a role in helping to soothe your body’s response.

In the spring, impurities (called ama) that have built up over the less-active winter months — months where during the cold weather we tend to eat more — start to naturally be released inside the body as we become more active and the temperature rises. This causes the body to naturally start a detoxification process in the spring. The toxins released during this process can build up in the microchannels of the body (the shrotas), blocking them.

When the microchannels are blocked, nutrients are not delivered properly to the cells. Also, communication between the various systems of the body can be hindered, and the body’s immune system becomes weakened, and/or confused. Then, in the spring, as plants bloom, they fill the air with pollen (allergens) and our body mistakenly regards these natural particles as enemies and attacks them, causing the sometimes-debilitating symptoms we know as allergies. That’s the reason, in the Ayurvedic model of health, our reaction to allergens spikes in the spring.

The Spring Flood of Ama

Traditional Ayurvedic experts view the body’s overreaction to environmental allergens as a problem occurring in a particular sub-dosha of Kapha, called Shleshaka Kapha. This sub-dosha is responsible for maintaining moisture in the upper respiratory tract.

As the ama (digestive impurities) in the body is released, it can combine with Shleshaka Kapha to form a thick, sticky toxin called shleshma, which starts to fill the respiratory tract and sinus cavities. The entire respiratory system, as a result, becomes a fertile breeding ground for bacteria and health imbalances. This is the reason why allergen sensitivity can become a sinus or respiratory issue. This is also why a Kapha-reducing diet of lighter foods that are easier to digest is recommended. These kinds of foods are easier on the body and help flush ama out.

What about diet?

Researchers have found that a diet that includes regular intake of certain spices can reduce vulnerability to plant allergens. These spices contain natural chemicals that include flavonoids and phenols. For example, turmeric is rich in curcumin, a compound that is known to support a healthy inflammatory response. Turmeric can also help improve digestion and balance the flow of bile. Sage, red pepper, cumin and coriander are some other spices that are known to help with allergy response. Sautéing a combination of ground turmeric, cumin and coriander in ghee and using the mixture to season vegetables is a way of incorporating some of these Ayurvedic herbs/spices into your diet.

From the Ayurvedic perspective, it is important to follow a Kapha-Pitta pacifying diet. When allergens attack the body, the body’s immune system releases various chemicals. So it is considered essential to pacify Pitta, because Pitta regulates chemical functions in the body. Drinking Organic Pitta Tea (available at Ayurbeauty Wellness Center) or using the Organic Cooling Spice Mix (food seasoning) is a convenient way of doing this. It is also important to pacify Kapha to counteract sluggish digestion and congestion. This is especially true in the Kapha season (spring).

Understanding the need to strengthen the body’s defense systems to effectively combat allergens is important. Appeasing symptoms provides only temporary relief.

A key to Ayurveda and diet is timing and quantity. Eating a light breakfast of stewed fruit or oatmeal is ideal. A larger lunch taken around noon, when digestion is the strongest, is considered by Ayurveda to be best. A light dinner of grain and vegetables, taken at least 3 hours prior to sleep, is best for ending the day and sleeping soundly. Remember, if there is no hunger by the next meal, we have most likely overeaten at the prior meal. Listening to our body is a key in maintaining a toxin-free system.

Exercise:

Exercising on a regular basis is a way to remove toxins (ama) from the body. As our body burns sugars and fats for food during exercise, it naturally detoxifies the system. Ayurveda recommends daily exercise and considers a morning walk to be ideal. Yoga asanas (postures) are a healthy way balance the body. Ayurveda suggests some aerobic exercise in addition for cardiovascular health and for burning off ama. Tripeak Athlete https://tripeakathlete.wordpress.com/ can certainly help you burning off toxins and extra weight!!!

Meditation:

Practicing a stress-reducing meditation technique is paramount for a balanced lifestyle. A Meditation practice, provides deep rest along with the experience of transcending, pacifies all the doshas. 

Digestion:

Three key principles to long-term balance and wellness in Ayurveda are broadly summed up in three lifestyle tactics:

1) Reducing ama (toxins),

2) Balancing/strengthening digestion (agni) and

3) Significantly lowering stress.

Each of these plays a powerful role in supporting long-term, life-changing wellness, according to Ayurveda. To accomplish these three targets, Ayurveda offers you lots of enjoyable options. Each of these choices has the power, in the Ayurvedic model, to gradually, naturally support and restore Ayurvedic balance in mind and body. These lifestyle choices include changes to diet; stress reduction practices like yoga, exercise and meditation; and traditional Ayurvedic herbals.

The Ayurvedic herbals listed below are core herbal products supporting important areas of Ayurvedic wellness.

Balanced digestion is a priority in Ayurveda.

Digestion is a central, long-term, priority focus of Ayurveda. Great emphasis is placed on keeping digestion (agni) balanced. In this sense, ‘balance’ means functioning at its absolute optimum. That’s because digestion (agni) is the engine of transformation and assimilation. This transformation ‘engine’ isn’t found just in the stomach — it is found in every cell in the body. It is an extremely intelligent engine, too. It transforms and metabolizes food nutrients and food intelligence into you, and selects out that which isn’t useful to the body and mind. Depending on the strength of agni, the ‘transformation engine,’ either ama (toxins) or ojas (the beneficial biochemical of balance) will be created. Ojas is the finest and most-valued by-product of digestion in Ayurveda, supporting immunity, happiness, the feeling of connectivity (union or yoga) and emotional stability.

Digestion is the key in Ayurveda to ama removal and avoiding ama production

Triphala: available at Ayurbeauty Wellness Center is a powerful herb for the digestive system. If you are feeling sluggish, dull or occasionally constipated, chances are that toxins are building up in your body. Toxins accumulate when your digestion — and elimination — are out of balance, which can lead to skin breakouts, menstrual cramps, fatigue, feelings of sadness and many other health issues. Triphala is the every-night, overnight detox and digestion balancer, supporting assimilation, balancing agni and ojas. 

Immunity – Allergen response is all about balanced immune response

Shilajit: — available at Ayurbeauty Wellness Center is one of the oldest dietary mineral resins that has been used by ancient Ayurvedic practitioners for a healthy and strong body. Among the natural medicines Shilajit can be considered one of the most effective remedies for Immune System.  In fact, Immune System is ability of the body to resist the impact of the infection, as well as foreign organisms or substances. Sometimes, this protective ability is reduced, and then the person has to drink immune modulators – substances increasing Immune System to the normal level.

 by Maharishi Ayurveda

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