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Ayurveda: Ancient Wisdom for Modern Living

We often explore ways to boost health and find wellness practices to integrate into our daily routines. One such healing philosophy is Ayurvedic medicine, used by millions in India and around the world. The term “Ayurveda” is a blend of words which mean “knowledge of a long life” or “the Science of Life“, and experts teach healthy living along with therapeutic measures that relate to physical, mental, social and spiritual harmony. Reenita Malhotra Hora is a master of the subject and is also a wonderful author here on Feelgood Style! Ayurveda is increasingly gaining popularity in the west, with ayurvedic based spa treatments, especially with the healing arts and roots lovingly intertwined with yoga exercise. Actually, very recently I was reading that “Ayurvedic Yoga” is applying Ayurveda to the practice of Yoga which emphasizes the healing aspects of Yoga. Curious about the subject? Well I am, so here is a little interview we recently did on the topic of healing with Ayurveda:

1. What are the basics of Ayurvedics diagnosis? (i.e. based upon the doshas /mind-body types)
A consultation with an Ayurvedic doctor enables him/her to determine your basic mind/body constitution or ‘dosha.’ There are three basic doshas:
  • Vata (comprised of air/space) – highly energetic, quick thinking, creative individuals who are physically lighter and fleet of foot.
  • Pitta (comprised of fire/water) – intense, passionate and highly intelligent individuals of a medium structure and athletic build.
  • Kapha (comprised of water/earth) – calm, grounded, ‘long term oriented’ individuals with a dense bone structure and more solid physique.

2. For this season what are a few simple Ayurvedic treatments for heat stoke or sunburn this summer?

Aloe Vera, Aloe Vera, Aloe vera! Eat it or drink it to quell internal inflammation and apply it on your burns for almost instant relief. Another wonderful ‘skin coolant’ is a mixture of crushed cucumber with half a teaspoon of turmeric added to it. This makes a wonderful body scrub that cools inflammation in the skin. And if you are very hot from inside then, nutritionally, go for bitter green vegetables. Kale, collard, seaweed, watercress…the more bitter, the better!

3. Since this healing art covers the mind-body-spirit connection, how do you usually treat a patient interested in healing an emotional wound for example?
Any kind of toxin, whether its origin is emotional or physical, is much easier to eliminate in a physical state. Physical toxins are always eliminated through the digestive system (through gentler or more stringent processes) When it comes to ‘mind’ or ’emotional’ toxins, initially we talk to patients to determine the nature/origin of the toxin (much like therapy) and then apply ‘physical’ treatment ie. through nutrition, herbal application, body therapy etc. to essentially ‘convert’ the emotional toxin to a physical state in order to then eliminate through digestive detoxification. For example, people are always amazed at how the treatment of depression…always leads to the accumulation of mucous during the treatment. It is not as if they ‘suddenly’ became allergic, but the mucous is one example of how emotional toxin is converted to a physical state to enabel the body to naturally release it.
4. Of all your books which one is a good starting point for beginning students?
Definitely – Ayurveda, The Natural medicine of India published by Mandala Press: This small book is essentially a quick read. it runs through the medicine explaining its basics. Inner Beauty (top image) also explains the basic concepts but is more about self care…making your own Ayurvedic skincare and detox recipes, Ayurvedic Yoga routines (to answer your question on this) etc. The video is particularly fun, much like a Martha Stewart cooking show…except it’s about Ayurveda!

Read More About Natural Healing and Yoga:

Written by Lucille Chi

Lucy Chi loves good green design, ethical fashion, environmental art and education, renewables, holistic healing and more. She has been dedicating her energies toward finding and drawing attention to all the ways in which products, companies, and industries are moving toward creating a more sustainable world on the global scale, as well as the way individuals are moving toward living sustainably, and healing at the personal level.

Sustainability studies: &
B.S. Cornell University, College of Human Ecology, Dept. of Textiles and Fiber Science.

Contact: lucillechi (at)

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