Category Archives: Channels

Pitta Seasonal Bloom 2016

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Pitta season is in full swing — it’s SUMMER time! Summer means sun, summer rain, sweat, swimming pools, popsicles, watermelon, bare feet, vacation, sun hats, sunglasses, sunscreen, and…go find shade! There is so much to look forward to and I’m excited to share my Pitta Seasonal Bloom download with you!

Why is seasonal balance important in Ayurveda? Remember our Ayurvedic foundation, “like increases like.” Which means when the elements/doshas are dominant in us AND in nature, they can overflow and create imbalance in us. When we are imbalanced we start to feel like crud and if we feel like crud for too long, eventually we will notice physical ailments in our bodies or minds. SO! The goal in Ayurveda is to avoid feeling like crud and live optimally by staying in harmony with nature instead of working against it.

Pitta seasonal bloom has loads of diet & lifestyle tips for your mind, body and spirit. Here’s to a happy and healthy summer! *clink!*

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6 Ayurvedic Tips to Balance the Time Change

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Oh man, our clocks changed! Just as we got used to the glow of the sun waking us, it’s pitch black again when the alarm goes off. The reward is a longer day, which, “Hooray for daylight!” but the time change can still throw us off. Time change in Ayurveda affects vata because, well, we’ve made a fast change. *Poof* just like that, we gained an “extra hour.” It can take some of us weeks to adjust but hopefully the tips below will help you slide back nicely into nature’s rhythm quickly.

6 Ayurvedic tips to balance the time change

1. Wake up before sunrise. Ha! Easy enough to do now, ’cause you kind of have no choice. My point is, just because it’s dark at 6:00 a.m., don’t go hittin’ the snooze until the sun comes up. We already know waking up during vata time (before sunrise) gives us a daily boost because as we rise in the energy of movement. So keep doing that! Yes it’s dark, but you’ll have more energy than if you pull the covers over your head until sunrise. Not only is sunrise kapha time and therefore slow time, but you’ll be late for work (pssst, ’cause work still starts at the same time).

2. Cook at home, with fresh ingredients. As always in Ayurveda we strive to put the best foods in our bodies, always. During the time change, it’s especially important. Best is to make sure foods are made at home with fresh ingredients including plenty of fruits and veg. Not too much dairy!

food ideas!
• Instead of Chinese take out, make fried rice at home, use extra veggies and less soy sauce (salt).
• Instead of delivery pizza, pick up some pre-made pizza dough (Trader Joe’s has it), brush some olive oil onto the crust (bonus if you want to infuse the oil with garlic) or a little sauce. Add a wee, thin layer of cheese. Then load up the crust with all your favorite vegetables like kale, zucchini, peppers, whatever you love.
• Do I even need to tell you a nice batch of kitchari will help set you straight?
• Instead of sit-down Mexican, grab all the supplies including beans, meat (if you choose), avocado (yes please!), peppers, corn tortillas (bonus if you make them yourself), rice, fresh cilantro and all the fixin’s. You will have far less salt and sugar in what you make at home. I advise skipping the taco seasoning and make your own mix with cumin, chili powder, and other spices.Or, a little salt & pepper is all you might need. Choose the fresh-made salsa in the produce isle instead of the room-temp stuff in the chip isle. Below is a pic of my dinner last night: homemade spanish rice, homemade tortillas, avocado, bell peppers, cilantro and hot sauce. mm!

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3. Limit salts & processed sugars. Tons of excess salts and sugars lurk in foods especially from chain-restaurants, pre-packaged foods or frozen foods. Eating those foods at any time can make it extremely challenging to wake up in the morning (cue the, “I’ve feel like I’ve been hit with a baseball bat” wake-up). Salt holds water and creates heat so it’s great for vata-types in winter, but no bueno for kapha season. So again, keep foods as veggied and fruitied and grainy-ed as you can! Fresh fresh!

4. Oil Massage! “Yeah yeah, Monica B. You and your oil massages.” Dude, but since time change is a vata change and we calm vata directly through the skin, now is a perfect time not to slack on oil massages. Plus your skin will feel like a baby! Trust me.

5. Water. Drink plenty of it — not too cold and no ice (vata-imbalancing). You might be drawn to choosing extra coffee or stimulants to keep your peeky eyes awake since you got up early, but try not to have any more (if any) than you normally would. Choose extra water since water flows…it will help you go with the flow

6. Normal bed time. It’s only been one day since the time change, so you might still look at the clock at 10:00 p.m. and think, “Pah, it’s really only 9:00…I can stay up for another hour.” No, it’s really 10:00 p.m. ;) So get your lil’ booty to sleep on time so you can wake up in the dark easier (hehe).

7. So Hum. As you prepare for sleep, lay in your right side and do “so hum” mantra and meditation for a minimum of 10 minutes. If you fall asleep before you’re done with the 10 minutes, bonus!

If you adhere to these things for 3-5 days in a row, you won’t even notice the time change, I promise.
Hint: You can use these same tips for air travel!
Double Hint: You can do these things daily and change your entire life! <—10% off with code 6ZE83B8R thru 3-31-16.

XOXO!

Time and Space for Breathing

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On the 8th day of Ayurveda my spirit gave to me…

TIME AND SPACE FOR BREATHING

In the midst of holiday busy-ness, party-ness, giving-ness, cooking-ness, mailing-ness, spending-ness, decorating-ness, traffic-ness, etc., many of us feel overwhelmed and exhausted before the holiday celebrations even get here!

One of the fastest ways to calm, ground, and nourish ourselves is by (wait for it…) breathing. Yep, that’s it. Our two lovely little nostrils are the fastest passageways to the mind, so breathing slowly tells our mind, “It’s all good. We got this.” And the mind relays that message to the rest of the body so we can fully relax. Let’s make some time to breathe today.

Today, please find 5-10 minutes (use a timer if you want) to sit down in a chair, feet flat on the floor, back straight, eyes closed, palms facing upward on your lap. Just breathe slowly through the nose (mouth closed) until the timer goes off.

Let me know how you feel afterwards :) xo!

And let’s take it back down…

I might be over-spending
6 E-gads I’m overeating
5 Oops, too many cocktails!
4 Wisdom for right choices

3 Staying in the present
2 A path for evolving
1 Permission for my authenticity

The 12 Days of Ayurveda

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Ayurveda encompasses mind, body and spirit, right? Yep! We probably spend the most of our time trying to nurture, improve, or heal our body as we focus on, “What should I eat?” and “What is the best exercise for me?” Our mind usually comes in second place like, “How can I relieve stress?” or, “I should probably meditate sometimes…” But how often do we focus on truly living through the spirit? Not as often. And spirit is important. Spirit is our pure essence, our infinite being, our light. It is the answer to, “Who am I?” I am spirit (so hum).

So in thinking about the holiday season (since we are totally in the throes now), I noticed a thread of commonality weaving through us. During this time of year more-so than any other, we actually talk about spirit! The word “spirit” is used all the time as we feel “spirited” and “get in the spirit.” We have a “spirit of believing” and the “spirit of giving.” We are even prone to drinking too many “spirits“! With the flip of a switch during the holiday season, our spirit begins to soar through kindness, love, celebration, compassion and generosity as all of these awesome positive emotions become the focus. Whether we are religious or not religious, spirit transcends as we want to join in the spirit with everyone else — because it feels awesome. Our spirit tells us so.

Now, don’t get me wrong, the holidays can bring physical and emotional challenges that affect our spirit too. The holidays can add a laundry list of extra things to do, might include stressful travel schedules, and bring out a rollercoaster of emotions. Gah! And then you shake your fist and say, “Arg, the Holidays!” So, it’s not all roses and we know that. But if we asked our spirits, I think they would love to believe in magic that brings us all closer.

In light (yes, pun!) of Hanukkah starting and Christmas around the corner, I would love to honor our spirits during the holidays this year with a little somethin’ special.

Tomorrow will start The 12 days of Ayurveda. And it goes a little somethin like this, “On the first day of Ayurveda my spirit gave to me…” Whee! So for 12 days there will be a little something special for you to use in your life and, especially during the holidays.

Now, if you want, you can sing to the tune of “The 12 days of Christmas.” It works (and yes, I sang them all out loud. If you are good maybe I’ll do a video). Or, you don’t have to. This is spirit, people! No rules and anything goes as long as it’s full purity of heart. LOVE YOU! I hope you have fun with this! *blowing kisses*

10% off my book, In Your Elements, thru 12/13 (Sunday)! Use the code: MC8RC2WV

 

Grouch-o-rama?

GROUCH-o-RAMA!! Why for? Are you unnecessarily grouchy or tired? Ask yourself if you had too many “spirits” this weekend. Too many spirits can quickly dampen our own spirit. If that’s the case, drink lots of extra water, have lots of fresh fruit and veggies (no meat!), do some pranayam (alternate nostril breathing, or long and deep ‘so hum‘) and write a gratitude list to set your energy on higher ground. XO!

(yes I’m still writing my book)

Ayurvedic Cleanse

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Heyo! I’ve been getting a string of questions from several of you around a common theme: An Ayurvedic Cleanse.

Let me ask, do you know why a cleanse is important? {have a think}

It’s important because we use our bodies every single day and without taking time to clean it and nourish it, it will start to break down in places. It’s kind of like a car. If we don’t give our cars oil changes, tune-ups, and repair small problems as they come up, the damages later would be very costly (and much worse). Same with our bods! We breathe things, see things, smell things, our skin absorbs things, we eat things, we get emotionally affected by things…and over time all those “things” stick on us and clog our bods and minds. As a daily habit, sleeping is good to restore the body and so is eating the right foods. But even with those two things in place, we still need to take time to cleanse at least once a year and/or as the seasons change because our body is in constant use!

The biggest reason for cleansing is to get rid of any ama that has built up over time AND to rebuild our agni (digestive fire) to a powerful state. Remember, mal-functiong agni is reponsible for 90% of all disease! That’s a mighty statement and GOSH is it true! Ama is – sticky, thick, white goo – a blockage which hinders our bodies, minds, and emotional well being. It’s basically a collection of old food-stuffs (old emotional-stuffs too!). We want to make sure our energy is running smooth and clear from head to toe so we can be our very best and brightest selves.

Time to clean it out. Alright, let’s do this. Below are instructions for a light kitchari cleanse and then a deeper kitchari cleanse with herbs, detox tea, and warm oils for massage.

Cleanse 1) A kitchari cleanse. This simple kitchari cleanse can be done any time you need it! Simply commit to 3-7 days of eating a monodiet of kitchari. How do you know if you “need” it? Are you feeling any ickiness in your mind, body, guts, joints, mood, etc.,? Eat some kichari for a few days and you should start to feel better. Any anger, irritability, anxiety, worry, sadness, should start to lighten and dissipate. Any feelings of heaviness, bloating, indigestion, or constipation will go away. Any cloudiness of mind, confusion, uncertainty, or indecisiveness will start to gain clarity. Hooray!

How to do it?
• Make a nice batch of kitchari <—recipe! If you want one-stop shopping, you can buy the Ayurvedic Cleanse Kit from Banyan Botanicals
• Sip ginger tea in the morning. If you are hungry, have some kichari. If not, sip ginger tea and/or hot water (can add lemon) until you feel hungry.
• Have kitchari for breakfast, lunch and dinner.
• If your tongue is pink, add ghee to the top (vatas and pittas can have a nice amount of ghee, kaphas have less). If your tongue is not pink (yet, it will be soon), wait to add extra ghee until your tongue is pink.
• You can sip herbal (caffeine free) teas during the day and have as much water as you like
• If you are very hungry between meals, have a piece of fruit (banana, peeled apple or pear, berries) and some tea
• Be sure to fill up during meals and have as much kitchari as you like.
• Do this for 3-7 days. You can journal how you feel along the way!

After the cleanse (just as important as the cleanse itself!)
It is important to slowly rebuild agni to be good and strong. So don’t say, “Yay! My cleanse is over! I’m going out for steak and wine and chocolate cake!” No no no, don’t do that ;) If you eat normally right after the cleanse, agni won’t be strong enough and you will start building up ama right away. I suggest to have liquid soup with veggies the next day. Next day have soup with rice or noodles. Next day have rice and veggies. Next day you can start eating normally. See that? A little step-by-step process to eating normal again. HINT: Do this with ANY cleanse, even if it’s not this one. It’s really important!!

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Cleanse 2) The deeper cleanse is not quite panchakarma (more on that soon, too much for this post), but it’s about as good as you can get by doing it from home. For this one the Deluxe Ayurvedic Cleanse Kit has everything you need. You can even download their little booklet on Ayurvedic Cleansing too. Or, you can compile your own items for the cleanse. This cleanse includes detox tea, herbs, and daily head to toe self massage with sesame oil.
• Follow the same instructions as above (they also have instructions) but you’ll be including massage, herbs, and the tea

When you are doing cleanses (even just a short one for 3 days), remember to RELAX. Make time and space for it. This is a cleanse for the mind and spirit and emotions just as it is for the body. If you cannot take off a day or two from work, be sure to unplug, unwind, and spend some time relaxing. Walks are good. Yoga is good. Intense exercise is not good. No tv or computer, books instead. Nice music, candles, warm socks, incense, sunsets, windows open…are all good things. NOURISH.

Yeah? What questions can I answer for you about cleansing? HAPPY AYURVEDIC SPRING CLEANING! XOXO!

Aggravated by Obstruction

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question_masthead

Hi Monica! What I’ve learned is that I have a Vata imbalance, but not only do I have ‘obstructed’ or ‘blocked’ Vata; I also have aggravated Vata. From what I understand, it seems like obstructed Vata and aggravated Vata are two completely different things. Obstructed Vata can cause all kinds of ama build-up, as well as blocked Pitta and Kapha too, right? And then aggravated Vata means that the air/space elements are just totally out of control and running wild. My question, then, is… how the heck do I go about treating these two different Vata problems? According to Dr. Lad & David Frawley (in ‘The Yoga of Herbs’), obstructed Vata can be remedied by using pungent herbs/spices, stimulant herbs, carminatives and laxative/purgative herbs. But then I’m thinking, should someone with aggravated Vata be increasing their usage of stimulant herbs? It seems like that would be contraindicated. My main concern is really the obstructed Vata, though, so I’d greatly appreciate any tips that you might have for this!

Most super awesome question, Dominique! Thank you!
You are correct. Ayurveda can get extremely complex and full of layers. For the purposes of not blowing yours or other readers’ minds, I’ll keep it simple. Vata needs to flow in the proper direction at the proper speed or the person will end up with vata aggravation. One causes the other, they are not separate vata problems. Vata can move too fast (over flow) or it can be obstructed, or it can take an entirely different route all together (gone rogue)! Anything different than optimal vata flow, will create vata aggravation. I’ll toss in that when the issue of flow occurs, vata aggravation can happen to anyone, even if they are not primarily vata constitution. {leaving space here for you to digest that tid bit} Pitta and kapha cannot move without vata (energy of movement), so vata is involved in everything.

Per your question, you are correct in addressing the obstructed vata first, because that is the root cause. We need to remove the obstacle and/or correct the proper flow of vata first, then use rasayanas (rejuvenatives) to build the body back in a healthy way. The reason for the stimulant herbs is because they will remove the blockage. Stimulating herbs/spices are heating and vata is cold (kapha is too). So if you have a cold, dry wad of vata (or kapha) blockage, pungent spices and heat will clear it. Make sense? Some therapies in Ayurveda that can do that are a kitchari cleanse, ayurvedic oil massage (oils with vata-balancing herbs), steam room, warm vata-balancing teas and consistent yoga practice.

In a nutshell, how to clear the obstruction
Clear the blockage with stimulating herbs
• If needed, add Ayurvedic therapies* like herbal oil massage, basti (oil enema), kitchari cleanse, steam, teas
• Build the body back with a vata-balancing diet and a rasayana (like chyavanprash)
• Now that the obstruction is gone, the vata aggravation should lift so you can hum along in vata harmony :)

*Please work with a reputable Ayurvedic practitioner for guidance!

 

Why I Got Sick.

Hi. I was in Boston last week. Boston. You know, that place where they declared a health emergency because of the flu outbreak. I was there for a work conference and everything was held in our hotel. I wasn’t sure if I should breathe on my coworkers (since most were not from Boston either) or if I should get outside and breathe. And then I remembered germs don’t really exist in Ayurveda, so what was I worried about? I was an Ayurvedic champ! Invincible. Totally gonna skirt this flu – watch me! Then on Friday, I got sick. It’s not terrible by any means but my throat burns, my nose is running, and my skin hurts when water touches it. And my knuckles ache.

I don’t know if it really is the flu or not, but what I do know is why I got sick. If any of the below sounds familiar and you have these as frequent habits, you will want to adjust your schedule immediately. The following habits deplete our best friend, ojas. Ojas is our life vitality, immunity, and strength in fighting off disease.

Why I got sick:

Two long flights. Air travel very vata increasing which dries us up, makes us cold and shrivels warm, gooey ojas. People get sick on flight not just from germs but because our immunity goes way down on the flights and we can easily catch what people are sneezing. Gross.
A packed schedule. Days went from 8am-10pm, nonstop. Well, there were pauses, but I didn’t want to miss out on anything so I just kept going and talking.
Limited fruits and veggies, and too many muffins, croissants, rolls, and potatoes. Not enough vitamins, digestive spices, or healthy fats in the food.
Coffee, daily because I wasn’t sleeping. Coffee is very dehydrating and gives a false sense of energy.
Wine, nightly. If there’s a way to instantly deplete ojas, combine wine + flying + packed schedule + not sleeping. Hello, sick.
Insomnia, only getting about 5 hours of sleep each night. I was so amped when I hit the pillow! Insomnia was a result of high vata from travel, busy activities, and dehydration.

Some of you might be thinking, “You wuss, MonicaB! You can’t even handle 4 days of a busy conference!?” To that I will say, “No, no I can’t. Not me. I have high vata to begin with and this sh*t wears me out.” Because I know myself, I could see that I was in trouble with this schedule. So, now I encourage you to do the same. Does your schedule include any one (or more) of these on the list? If so, do you get sick often? It’s a fun puzzle once you understand what influences (besides germs) can make you sick and so many of it is within our control.

Next up is part 2 and I’ll tell you how I made it through the sickness. :)

Ayurveda is not magical

Hey guys! Often when people think of Ayurveda, they associate it with the image below. Seemingly magical remedies that really don’t make logical sense.

The girl has Shirodhara treatment - indian oil massage.

Am I right? It might seem mysterious, exotic, pretty unattainable, maybe luxurious or elitist, and even a little weird. Like gross, who would put their head under warm oil while it drips all over their HAIR! Eu! And then how do you get it all out?! ;)

Well, shirodhara (SHEE-ro-DAR-uh) is the name of the therapy where the oil flows onto the forehead from one side to the other, almost in an oval pattern. Unlike all the photos you see, there is actually a person (or should be) moving the oil stream from side to side. Anyway, my point is that while this therapy is truly awesome (if you could feel it’s awesomeness, you would BEG for oil to be dripped all over your hair), it’s a teeny weeny part of Ayurveda! Shirodhara is not accessible to most people, it can be expensive for treatments, and it’s not something you can do daily.

I have good news. Ayurveda is so much more than shirodhara, herbs and other “magical” remedies. 90% of all imbalance can be corrected with diet and lifestyle. Do you know what a magical remedy is? Eating really good food that comes fresh from the earth, not from a lab or a GMOed seed. Another magical remedy is getting enough sleep each night and turning off computers early enough so we can unwind. Sleep does magic for the mind to help it rest as the body restores itself. One of the best magical remedies is getting daily exercise (yes daily, discipline!) even if it’s a 20 minute daily walk. Drinking enough water to keep the body supple and flowing is also another magical remedy. It keeps the mind clear and focused, channels flow easily, and our bodies stay buoyant instead of shriveled. My favorite magical remedy is breathing. It’s so magical and easy that we forget it’s even there ;)

Friends, when you think of Ayurveda and talk about it to your comrades and loved ones, remember that Ayurveda is simple. Ayurveda is life. Ayurveda is nutrients, rest, movement, hydration, and taking in enough oxygen. If you don’t have these things, then don’t bother with the fancy shirodhara therapy, the spas, the herbs, or the massages. Start simple. Start with what you already have within your power. And if you aren’t doing those simple things yet, then start practicing :) That is where you will find your results and where you will live your best life. And once you get the hang of that then run, do not walk, to your nearest Ayurvedic spa for an indulgent shirodhara session :) xoxo!! You can DO it!!!

If you want to practice the real deal (it’s accessible, simple and fun!), you might want to check out my book IN YOUR ELEMENTS. It’s a workbook! And I talk like you! Ain’t no mystery or magic, it’s chock full of real life, easy ways to keep you feeling awesome every day.

Thank You, Headache

My sweet coworker told me today she woke up with a terrible headache. My gut response was, “Well, did you eat any junky foods lately?” She said she did. She also said she didn’t drink enough water yesterday. Well, that’ll do it! I told her to eat some nice fruits and veggies and to start drinking lots of water. I also joked that she’s getting to be oldie moldy (she’s like, 26) and her body can’t take the junkie foods any more ;)

In all seriousness, I told her to thank her headache because it’s a sign that the body is not happy. “Thank you, headache, for the signal. As I look back on the past day or so, I now realize I didn’t fill my body with good stuff! I will listen to you now and next time will make better choices. Thanks for the wisdom to keep myself healthy!” And that my friends, is how we learn Ayurvedically.

Rather than just wishing the headache away, learn from it. Yes, take an ibuprofen if you want but take the time to look backwards and change your habits going forward. In our modern-ness, we are so concerned on quick-fixing the pain (or the heartburn, or the constipation, or the common cold, the list goes on) that we completely MISS the opportunity to improve our lives!! These minor pains in the tukus are not really minor at all. Well, they might start out that way, but these are signals that the body is not functioning properly! Let me say that again, “…that the body is not functioning properly!” That’s kind of a big deal. Our bodies are smart and give us information all the time. We have to be a good partner to receive and honor it’s requests.

(I could stop this post here, but I’m on my soap box so I’ll continue. Plus I want to –*clunk* *clunk* *clunk*– get this into your head and the heads of those you love.)

It’s no longer okay to say, “I’ll have to pack my Pepcid because I’m going to have spaghetti with meatballs, red wine, and garlic bread for dinner at the restaurant and I know I’ll get heartburn.” Dude that is soooo old school, soooo pre-2012. We know now that need to STOP eating those foods in the first place! Taking some medicines once in a while isn’t terrible, but many people take them so they can unknowingly carry on undisturbed, with habits that do not serve them. Gah! No more! Our bodies and lives are more important than that!! Next time you feel ill or imbalanced look behind you. What did you eat? How did you sleep? Did you drink enough water? Did you eat according to your constitution? What season is it? Questions like these will bring introspection and let your wisdom shine through (jumping off the box).

When has your wisdom shone through for you–like, when did you have an “aha” moment about a habit that was no longer serving you? How did you feel after you made the right choice? I’m curious! Ok I’ll go first: Eating meat makes me moody, judgmental, impatient and angry. A vegetarian fare keeps my mind clear and happy. Your turn!

Wrong Food Combinations

Graphic for Wrong Food CombinationsAs you’ve been learning about Ayurveda, you know how we stress the importance of digestion. Instead of, “You are what you eat” Ayurveda says, “You are what you digest.” That little saying really reminds us that the focus is not only in what we eat, but how we eat it, at what time, and which foods are best for us based on our individual make-up.

Food provides the basic building blocks for our entire physical and mental bodies. That’s it! Just food. You know that you feel better or worse depending on the quality of foods you’ve been eating. And because we are no dummies, we know that fresh veggies and fruits are better nourishment for us than a Cadbury Egg or bag of Doritos. We know that. It’s pretty much elementary nutrition and something we’ve known since we were kids. (I’m not here to take away your fun: Once a year, a Cabury Egg is not going to imbalance you. In moderation, sweeties are to be enjoyed and savored. But if you eat a dozen…yeah, that’s not good.)

So! Whatever we put in our mouths is proper nourishment…or not. And! We usually know the difference between the two.

But here’s something you probably don’t know. In Ayurveda, there are certain food combinations that should be avoided. While an annual Cadbury Egg won’t hurt you, the consistent practice of incompatible foods probably will imbalance your digestion (gas, bloating, heartburn, diarrhea, constipation, etc.,) whether instantly or over time. So many people complain of digestion issues—it’s probably the number one complaint from my clients! I’m giving you the information not to be a huge downer, but to give you proper tools to help your tum-tum feel better and to healthify you!!

Wrong Food Combinations:
Dairy & Fruit. Fruit sours and curdles the milk in our stomachs. (my 9 month-old has been coming home after daycare spitting up because they are giving her banana or mango as a snack and then immediately milk. No bueno!)
Dairy & Fish. No cheese on that Filet O’Fish! (*wink* I know you’re not eatin’ Filet O’Fishes) Salmon with lemon, salt and pepper, little rice, little veggies is a good choice. Mm!
Dairy & Meat. Too heavy, murky, and way hard on digestion! Have meat with veggies
Eggs & Milk.
Milk should basically be consumed by itself.
You could have it as a snack in between meals or in place of a dinner if you’re not very hungry. You can have it with non yeasty grains, like cereal. No banana or strawberries on the cereal.
Fruit and fruit juice should be consumed by itself. Again, think of it as a snack.
No yogurt unless you turn it into a lassi. Mango lassi is not Ayurvedic!

As we approach warmer weather, we might be tempted by “smoothie” concoctions of fruit and milk/yogurt and maybe even of frozen yogurt shops with fruits. Unfortunately these don’t go together. And yes, that means Pinkberry. I’m sorry. Have caramel sauce instead. :p

If you look at the list, it’s not all that complicated and it’s already pretty intuitive. I mean, drinking milk with fish just sounds nast. If you really think about berries and milk or pineapple and milk, those combos seem a little strange too, right? For us Americans, the biggest challenge will be not to combine fruit and diary because that combo is everywhere! But if you remain conscious of that and just remember that fruits are eaten alone, I think you will find it simple. What do you think? Does this sound impossible living the way we do now? Or, have you noticed certain combinations irritate your tummy – if so, what are they? Would love your thoughts! xoxo!

Beep Beep! Carmageddon.

Last weekend (July 16th & 17th) in Los Angeles there were severe warnings about “carmageddon.” Basically they were closing down a stretch of the 405 freeway for the weekend to do some construction work on the bridge as part of a project to widen the freeway. The media warned about it for several weeks and told everyone to stay home because 500,000 cars were going to be rerouted to different freeways and side streets over 2 days. In LA, that’s crazy!!


It’s no surprise that when a major street or thorough fare closes completely or goes down to one lane, it messes up the surrounding streets as well. Well, the same happens in our bodies (dun dun dun)! We have thousands of vertical channels that go from head to toe throughout our entire body. Ayurveda calls them srotas (there are 14 – think of these as big channels, like a freeway) or nadis (there are 72,000 – think of them as side streets). This is why Ayurveda uses massage and acupressure – because it opens and clears channels! This is exactly how acupuncture works too. Puncturing or pressing on certain areas of the body help these channels respond and release any clog they are holding. It also helps to reroute any channels that have gone wonky and are flowing into the wrong places.

It makes sense then when we have some sort of ailment, pain, or imbalance that we have to look at the root cause of where the pain is coming from. Just because there is a clog (imbalance) on street A, doesn’t mean we treat street A. If street B is closed, causing traffic to overflow onto street A, we have to fix street B first. Seeking out the root cause is why Ayurveda is so effective in healing. Western medicine looks at street A and tries to fix that first, which is why often times people end up on several medications because one medication causes a side effect. An example of a side effect would be if we divert traffic from street A (cause that’s where the clog is)  to street C, to solve our street A problem. BUT!! The clog on street B is still there and now there is also a clog on street C. So we might divert traffic from street C to street D which also causes back up there. As you can see, it can go on and on.

Looking at this from the other side, if we were to open up the lanes on street B, this would allow ALL the streets to remain open and traffic to run smoothly. Same with our bods!!

My friendlies, this is why when talking to your Ayurvedic Practitioner really look deep and give all the information about your diet, lifestyle, past traumas, etc., We have to find out where the clog is. With that we can begin to use our therapies to open and unclog channels so that our bods begin to flow in true harmony. It’s a new way of thinking, isn’t it? And, isn’t always the best news (like when margaritas give you heartburn in summer), but it is the only thing that fixes the true problem. Only then do we have the empowerment to learn what shakes us and what keeps us humming along. Once we get the hang of it, we will choose the humming route over and over :) I promise!!

(turns out that everybody stayed home so there was no traffic, no carmageddon :)