Cooked vs. Raw Food Diet: Transcend Food Fads

Transcend food fads and diets and adhere to the ultimate diet: Natures Diet.

The Dubious Flexibility of Scientific Literature

When engaging in discussions and dispelling myths of particular health trends, I truely intend to create a balanced argument on both sides. I like to present the pros and cons of both sides, the science and the ancient wisdom, then allow the reader to make an informed decision themselves that applies to their unique self.

According to the science, raw food and cooked food, are both beneficial and our ancestors enjoyed both.

Due to the dubious nature of scientific studies, a more holistic insight is required. Thus, it is wise to consider the traditional sciences that have time tested these topics for thousands of years, as in the case of Ayurveda.

Anthropology: What Did Our Ancestors Eat?

The logic that our ancestors only ate raw foods is flawed, with numerous studies suggesting we have been cooking for almost 2 million years.

Cooking with fire predates homosapians. If you trace your way back, you find the species prior, which were still in our genus, they were homo (human), "homo erectus" to name the precise genus, had fire and passed the torch onto homosapians. This was all found through fossil analysis.

Why did they use fire? the study says:

“To reduce digestive effort…[and] increase the supply of food energy.”
Cooking and the Ecology of Human Origins.

In Ayurveda, the discussion isn’t so narrow as to one is bad and one is good.

Many things are taken into account, including The Eight Factors Determining the Utility of Food:

  1. Prakriti - nature of food articles.
  2. Karana - method of processing.
  3. Samyoga - combination of food articles.
  4. Rasi - quantity.
  5. Desa - habitat of the food and where it is being eaten.
  6. Kala - Time - day or night, age of the person and stage of the disease in the individual.
  7. Upayogasamsthā - rules governing the intake of food. One should no speak, laugh, take in hurry, very slow, etc.
  8. Upayoktrn - wholesomeness of the individual who takes it. This includes "OkaSatmya" - What the individuals ancestors ate, what they were brought up eating, and what they are habituated to eat.

The Importance of Agni (Transformation)

As you see above, Processing (Karana) is one of the Eight Factors Determining the Utility of Food.

Processing or cooking foods is vital. It transforms the food. Usually for the good. Cooking in most cases can remove samskaras ("memories") of the food item and transform the qualities of it.

Example: transforming milk with fire

Take milk from stress-induced, unhappy factory farmed cows for example. When you boil the milk diluted with water, to some extent, the stress chemistry of the cows are removed from the milk.

Take it to the next level by adding some black pepper to further transform the milk as these little pungent black fiery spice balls counter the heavy, damp, mucous creating quality of milk.

There are many ways to process or cook food (detailed below). It is vital to purify the substance, enhance its absorbability for humans and nutritional effect.

“Raw foodists, it is clear, do not fare well. They thrive only in rich modern environments where they depend on eating exceptionally high quality foods.... the implication is clear. We are not like other animals. In most circumstances, we need cooked food.”
~ Harvard Professor Richard Wrangham, “Catching Fire: How Cooking Made Us Human.”

On the other hand...

Common cooking methods can be used to enhance the nutritional value of vegetables, increasing bio-accessibility of health-promoting constituents.

Cooking has the effect of softening the indigestible cellulose, allowing nutrients to be rereleased that may not be when eaten raw.

Cooked foods is not just about nutrients, they are nurturing for your intestinal wall!

Foods that Have A Higher Nutrient Value When Cooked

Artichokes

Cooking artichokes increase their antioxidant levels (steaming is best).

Studies observed the cooking effect on the artichoke antioxidant profile is probably due to matrix softening and increased extractability of compounds.

Asparagus

Cooked asparagus has more antioxidants than raw. 

This study assessed "significant and more pronounced" changes during cooking process.

Blueberries

Studies show cooked blueberries can have greater antioxidant levels than fresh.

Baking blueberries changes their polyphenol content.

Note that fruit doesn't need to be cooked since the sun cooks it!

Carrots

Cooked carrots are more nutritious than raw. Steaming or baking whole carrots preserves more of the beta-carotene, studies showed.

The human body converts beta carotene into vitamin A (retinol) - beta carotene is a precursor of vitamin A. We need vitamin A for healthy skin and mucus membranes, our immune system, and good eye health and vision.

Broccoli

Some studies suggest raw because the heat breaks down the enzyme called tyrosinase, which is a precursor for broccoli to release cancer-fights and ulcer reducing sulforaphanes (which is what elevated broccoli to its superfood status).

Over all, you can’t digest those enzymes.

On the other hand, a perhaps even more health-prompting nutrient, Indole-3-carbinol, is processed only when broccoli, cauliflower and cabbage are cooked.

Indole-3-carbinol has been shows to stop pre-cancerous prostate cells from becoming malignant. 

Spinach

Raw spinach - chew it and it tastes chalky because it contains oxalic acid - an organic substance that can interfere with the absorption of essential nutrients like calcium and iron.

A study showed it also attaches to quite a few other vital nutrients, and long-term consumption of foods high in oxalic acid can lead to nutrient deficiencies.

Tomatoes

Studies showed cooked tomatoes have higher lycopene, a potent antioxidant more powerful then vitamin C, and is particularly useful in helping the body repair damaged tissue, and preventing cancer and heart attacks.

Other studies show vitamin C decreased when being cooked. 

Reported Benefit of Raw Food: Cleansing

Yes it is true, raw roods can be cleansing since they have more fibre.

This is why people get good bowel motions - it is going straight out.
They think this is a good thing, but actually, they are not absorbing nourishment.

This can be of benefit for when the body is sick and toxic, like in the case of cancer - as the fibre can scrub the intestines.

But once you are cleansed, raw food is not sustainable.

In the beginning, when lots of raw vegetables or "green juices" are eaten, the system starts to digest the ama (toxins and blockages) because you are not getting enough nourishment, so it is like fasting. Catabolic activity happens. The problems start when the ama is finished and then the body starts to eat the dhatus (healthy  tissues).

Raw Food Will Cause Weight Loss, But You're Losing Healthy Tissues!

Definitely people will loose weight on a raw diet. Due to catabolic action where tissues are broken down, including fat tissue. However, it also depletes other tissues, like bone, bone marrow, and reproductive tissue.

In ‘Catching Fire’, Professor Richard Wrangham wrote:
“Recent studies indicate that low bone mass in the backs and hips of raw foodists was caused by their raw diet.”

There are healthier ways to loose weight: Balance agni and activate healthy tissue metabolism.

Not only will the healthy tissues become depleted, but the digestive fire becomes compromised. And it takes a lot of attentiveness from someone recovering from raw food diet damage.

Overall with cancer, the more vegetables you eat, the better. Plant based diet is key.

In the condition of inflammatory bowels, the very first recommendation is stop eating raw food. While they are cleansing, they are very rough on the intestinal wall. Cleansing is not a suitable diet in this case of sensitive gut.

Reported Benefit of Raw Food: More Energy

Again, this is true but also false. 

Raw food takes about 80% more energy to digest than cooked food. Plus it also provides the body with less energy following digestion. 

So how is it that raw food makes you feel more energetic?
Because it certainly does, in the short term at least. 

Vata Aggravating & Catabolic Effect

Raw food has the qualities of Dry, Light, Cold and Rough.
The vata dosha (bioenergy responsible for movement) also has those qualities.
Thus, according to the natural law of “like increases like,” eating raw foods increase the vata dosha.

Vata is responsible for catabolism - cell reduction.

The Raw Food Diet Has Never Been Time Tested

When a cell breaks down, it is like a star exploding – it releases a lot of energy!

So, if you’ve ever been on a raw food, smoothie or juice diet, for a short period of time you may very well have felt on top of the world!

But this feeling won’t last forever and neither should your raw food diet.

Excess catabolism occurs, where healthy tissues become depleted. Then the Ojas (immunity, vitality, essence of your tissues), also gets reduced.

This is why many of the people I see who have tried raw diets feel great in the short term, and get inflicted with fatigue down the track. You may have experienced this.

People do not stay on the raw vegan diet for long.

Even 10 years is very rare for someone to be on a raw food diet, but those who have been, even that isn’t a long period of time!

Never as a human species have we done this.

Historically the diets of humans last centuries, not 10 years! And they never dipped in and out of fads. They maintained the same diet for generations.

They adhered to the ultimate diet. Natures diet.

Reported Benefit: Reduced Risk of Disease

Not a precise point to argument since people on raw food diets tend to stop eating processed food or a regular western ‘convenience/fast food’ diet.

This processed and unnatural diet is well recognised as the main cause of some of the most common chronic diseases in Western society.

They also eat more fruits and veggies and less meat.

They also tend to be people who care about their health, so tend to make other life-style changes - like sleeping better, meditation, exercise, healthy relationships, less alcohol and smoking etc. - that turn out to benefit their health.

The Wisdom of Ayurveda

As I mentioned at the beginning of this article, I really do try to make the argument balanced. But I just couldn't do that for raw foods.

The reality is, when you acknowledge the time-tested, rich science of Ayurveda, raw food only has a small place in the human diet.

For those who want optimal health and to cure and prevent disease, should primarily cook their food.

The famous Ayurvedic sage, Caraka Samhita, has 10 rules for eating raw food. They are in order of importance, and yep you guessed it, cooking food is included. In fact, it is number one most important for food to be wholesome.

10 Rules For Taking Food:

  1. Food Should be Warm/Cooked:

Reasoning for this from thousands of years ago:

  • It is delicious.
  • After intake it provokes the factors (enzymes) in the abdomen and helps digestion;
  • It gets digested quickly;
  • Helps digestion, fluids and nutrients move downwards (vata anulomana);
  • Maintains detachment of sticky, undigestible, toxic substances (kapha).

And the other 9 rules for food intake:

2. Food Should be Unctuousness (Snigdha)
3. Food taken in Proper Quantity.
4. Intake After Digestion of Previous Meal.
5. Intake of Food Having No Contradictory Potencies (Incompatible food combinations)
6. Intake in Proper Place (Calm environment) and With All Accessories.
7. Intake, Not in Hurry.
8. Intake, Not Too Slow.
9. Intake with Concentration, Self-Confidence and with due regard to his own self.

Reference: Caraka Samhita, Vimana Sthana.

The Eight Factors Determining the Utility of Food

Let's look at more ancient wisdom.

We saw the eight qualities earlier on in this article, lets go more into the second factor, and view the ancient ways of processing substances (that are still practiced today):

Karana - Processing the Substances:

  • Karana (processing) results in the transformation.
  • Transformation of the attributes is effected by:
  • Dilution
  • Application of heat,
  • Cleansing,
  • Churning - e.g. Curd by nature aggravates oedema; when churned, even with the fat content of it remaining intact, it alleviates oedema.
  • Storing,
  • Maturing,
  • Flavouring - e.g. sweet smelling drugs like utpala (Nymphae alba/White water lily) in water. 
  • Impregnating - drugs like amalaki in juices.
  • Preservation - Ingredients of Duralabhasava are required to be kept in a jar smeared with ghee for 15 days before use (Chikitsa 15:154).
  • Container - e.g. TriphalaRasayana is to be prepared in a new iron container smeared with the paste of amalaki (Chikitsa 1:3:43)(22-II)

Vegetables That Can Be Eaten Raw (Plants in Salad Form)

There is some balance in Ayurveda after all!

Ayurveda does mention certain vegetables that can be eaten raw. However, if these vegetables are cooked, that is ideal and easier to digest.

Ardraka (Green Ginger)

Tender Radish

  • When taste is not well manifested and tender, it  alleviates vitiated dosas, is light (laghu) and stimulates digestion.
  • When overgrown, it provokes these dosas.

Tulsi (Ocimum sanctum)

Leafy greens - Ajwain, Arjaka (Ocimum gratissimum / Clove Basil / African Basil), Sigru (Moringa oleifera), Saleya (Tringonella foenum-graceum / Fenugreek) , Mrstaka (Brassica nigra / Black Mustard) - Leaves of these vegetables are cordial and palatable.

Bhustrna (Cymbopogon citratus / Lemon Grass).

Dhanyaka (Coriandrum sativum / Coriander)

Palandu (Allium cepa / Onion)

Lasuna (Allium sativum / Garlic) - Can provide its fantastic health benefits when raw.

Source: Caraka Samhita, Vimana Sthana.

Other vegetables okay to eat raw:

  • Beetroot
  • Carrot
  • Cucumber
  • Celery
  • Mint
  • and vegetables with strong pitta characteristics can be eaten raw in limited quantity. Grated is best and at lunch or as snack if agni (digestive fire) is good.

What About Fruit?

Fruit is cooked by nature, by the sun. So when it ripens that is cooked.

What About Nuts?

Nuts you can take raw, but better to cook them - either soaking them, peeling some nuts like almonds, or activating.

Some Tips on Cooking

  • Don’t damage foods with high heat and over-cooking. Lightly steaming, lightly cooking is fine and will enhance health of the intestinal skin. 
  • Unless it is soups or stews - they capture the nutrients.
  • Blanch salads and leafy greens.
  • Use pure Clay Pots since they retain the nutrients profoundly.
  • Retain the water.
  • Use some quality oil always when cooking.
  • Eating a little raw food is completely fine. Your diet should be predominately cooked food.

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Thank you from the bottom of my heart for listening, and joining me on this evolutionary journey.

References

  • "Caraka Samhita," Vimana Sthana.
  • "Catching Fire: How Cooking Made Us Human", Richard Wrangham.
  • "Are Raw Food Diets Healthy?," Nadia Marshall.

Enemas, Bastis & Colonics: Think Twice Before Sticking Anything Up Your Bum

This article to get you thinking twice about enemas and anything you consider sticking up your pelvic floor’s larger orifice, whether it’s water, oil, salt water, coffee or a herbal decoction.

Note, enemas are one of the five most powerful therapies in Ayurveda (Panchakarma), and Ayurveda has significantly extensive knowledge and experience in this medical intervention. 

A few things to be aware of:

1. Unctuousness

In Ayurveda, there are thousands of enemas, (called Bastis) made up of various formulas. Not one of them are without the unctuousness quality, (a “friendly” type “oily” quality, called snigdha in Ayurveda). 

Water irrigation colonics, decoction enemas (including Ayurvedic herbal decoctions) and coffee enemas without any oil and procured without specific preparation processes will have a scarping action (langhana) inside the gut. This can damage the internal tissues and eliminate the healthy tissue (improper catabolism).

2. Honour Your Nervous System

Enemas are not only for the gut! As a matter of fact, the primary use of enemas are for your nervous system! Your navel is home to the Enteric Nervous System (the largest nerve plexus in the body) where all your nerve plexuses end in. This is why Ayurvedic bastis are powerful to nourish, (not detox), the nervous system, emotions, the mind and help in psychiatric disorders, auto-immune disorders, severe genetic conditions and dry nervous disorders like Parkinson’s and dementia.

Most bastis are small amounts of medicated oil (20ml-60ml) to be held in and absorbed into the gut, and not eliminated. They stay there to nourish your rich gut flora and can even penetrate every cell in your body if you use a precious basti oil. Contact Vital Veda to order matra basti oil. Orders via email only.

3. Coffee Enemas

Since your enteric system is the main organism getting flooded with the intra-rectal fluid of your choice, think twice before you pour your morning cappuccino up your bum.

Coffee enemas are definitely not suited to the majority of people and can act as a dehydrating gastro-intestinal irritant. 

4. Not All Oils are Equal

Those who know Ayurveda, know it holds profound knowledge on oils.

There are many methods of preparing the oils, and there is a specific one that is ideal for bastis - which is a “soft preparation method” (“mrdu paka”) to be gentle on the gut. Other oils may have some ama (toxins) as they are not purified properly and this enters into vulnerable organs since bastis bypass the liver.

Vital Vedas precious oils

5. Holistic Treatment Approach

As with all purification procedures, consider pre treatment and post treatment. We can learn from Ayurveda’s premier cleansing therapy called Panchakarma,” in that it has a “Purva Karma” (pre-action) and a “Pasjart Karma” (post-karma) with all cleansing therapies. Also your agni (digestive fire) has to be in a precise state before doing cleansing enemas. For this you need an experienced physician.

Have you had an enema before? What is your experience? Comment below.

Vital Veda Enema (Basti) Oil

We use a precious, fine basti oil and supply the kit and instructions.
This oil is prepared by the Raju family in a complex procedure.
If you would like to try some, it is only available by contacting us.


Authentic Ayurveda, Innocence & Purity for Maximum Healing | Dr. Harsha & Dr. Pavani Raju {Podcast #024}

The Rajus Story and Family Heritage

Ayurveda Healing at its Best

The Raju family comes from a long line of distinguished vaidyas (ayurvedic physicians) going back for generations on both the mothers' and fathers' sides. They are native to Andra Pradesh and have lived in Hyderabad for more than 30 years, practicing natural healing through ayurveda.

Dr. Harsha Vardhan Raju & Dr. Pavani Raju

Specialists in panchakarma, pulse diagnosis and sukhamarma.
Visiting teachers in Italia Invincible doctors training.
Visiting Ayurveda consultant to European and Asian Ayurveda Panchakarma centers.


In This Episode We Discuss

  • The current scarcity of authentic Vaidyas (Ayurvedic physicians) that carry an unbroken lineage of knowledge for many generations.
  • The importance of purity of knowledge.
  • Knowledge unfolding from the chanting since knowledge is structured in consciousness.

Being brought up under the guru of Maharishi Mahesh Yogi

Creating an atmosphere for children to want to learn

  • The beauty and efficient way of learning knowledge with innocence. At a young age for example.
  • 7 and 5 year old Raju children feeling the pulse of patients and prescribing herbs due to their ability to sense and the intelligence of herbs.
Rajuji teaching pulse to his nephews, nieces and grandchildren.

Surrendering children to gurus and great musicians.

Taking up the challenging task of teaching Pulse Diagnosis all around the world.

Pavani, Harsha & Aditya teaching pulse diagnosis and Ayurveda to other children in Holland.

Heritage of one of the worlds greatest Vaidyas: Dr. J.R. Raju

Dr. J.R. Raju (AKA “Raju-ji”).

Expert in ayurvedic medicines, panchakarma, pulse diagnosis and sukhamarma.

World renowned pulse diagnosis physician and trainer.

Pulse Diagnosis

“If a person doesn’t know how to read their own pulse, it is like a gardener who forgets to water the roots.”
~ Maharishi Mahesh Yogi.

The nourishing technique of self-pulse referral

Learn an Introduction to the Self-Pulse Technique here

    • The vast science of Pulse Diagnosis and the various techniques.
    • The scarcity and attempt to eradicate pulse knowledge through invasions. Thus it became more secretive to preserve the knowledge.

Learning Pulse Diagnosis

  • Perseverance, practice, powerful.
  • Be patience and learn one step at a time. Don’t jump ahead.
  • Pulse knowledge lacking in schools, universities, colleges and practice. 
  • Pulse knowledge for any practitioner, regardless of their practice.
  • Pulse diagnosis is language of the heart.

Many western doctors learning Ayurveda intimately with the Raju family as well as colleagues and becoming experts in Ayurveda. 

Aim of Ayurveda:

  1. Maintain health in the healthy individuals (prevention). - Prevention is a priority.
  2. Treat those with diseases or imbalance.

Banana Purification

Therapy to promote perfect health and Subtle Therapies

Subtle treatments at the primordial level

Many western doctors learning Ayurveda intimately with the Raju family as well as colleagues and becoming experts in Ayurveda. 

Aim of Ayurveda:

  1. Maintain health in the healthy individuals (prevention). - Prevention is a priority.
  2. Treat those with diseases or imbalance.

Qualities of a Physician

  1. Daksha - Able, eligible, disciplened. 
  2. Shastras - all sastras needs to be learned. Having detailed knowledge about diseases and treatments.
  3. Drsta Karma - practical experience of treatments. Practically seeing (drsta) the action.
  4. Suchi - Cleanliness. Actually means purity - kaya (physical cleanliness), vacha (pure speech). Have to feel the patient as your child. Have to see the God in the patient.

Approaching Treatment with Innocence and Purity

You don’t say, “now I know this.” Your master or guru will say, “okay, now you can practice.”
~ Dr. Harsha Vardhan Raju

When we try to judge ourselves, ego will come in. 

This provides the practitioner to be able to effortlessly. Nature supports and moves through you. You are a person healing through nature.

The more you become simplified and humble, the greater achievements you can do.

More and more practice enables one to grasp the Siddhi (capability).

Vaidya has the siddhi (capability) of his words - whatever he says will come true. This siddhi has come due to all the chanting done.

Four Pillars of Treatment

  1. Bhishak (Vaidya)
  2. Dravya (substance/matter/herbs)
  3. Upastata (Technician/assistnat)
  4. Rogi (Patient)

Qualities of a Patient For Maximum Results

  1. Adya - Have certain wealth for required resources for treatment.
  2. Bhishagvashya - Complete surrender to the Vaidya. 
  3. Jnapakaha - Good memory - to take the medicine and follow protocol and do what the attendant says.
  4. Satvavaanapi - Have courage and positive approach. Sattva. Have hope for removing the disease. Have patience. If patience is not there, there will be stress.

The importance of not asking the Vaidya, "How long with this disease be there?"

Healthy Skepticism

Required for western medicine to not fall a victim to inappropriate medical care, but better surrender the analytical mind when being treated in Ayurveda.

The Definition of Perfect Health:

Sama Dosha (Healthy Doshas)

Sama Agni-shcha (Healthy Agni)

Sama Dhatu (Health Tissues)

Mala Kriyaha (Proper elimination of wastes)

Prasan Atma Indriya Manaha (Blissful Soul, Senses & Mind)

Swastya (heathy person) Ityabi Di-Yete (This is the thing)

~Susruta Samhita

How enjoyable treatments are when in prevention mode

Rather then thinking about a disease over and over and how to fix it.

Ayurveda: Mother of All The Medicines

The Future of Ayurveda 

Enemas, Bastis, Colon Irrigations

Considerations to beware.

Other purification procedures, including Ayurveda, Raw foods and juices, Heated honey. - Considerations to beware.

Why Dinner Should be the Lightest Meal and Low in Protein

Read the full article here


Resources

The Rajus Ayurveda - clinic in Hyderabad, India.

Sign up to the Vital Veda Newsletter to be notified when and where Raju Vaidyas are travelling around the world.

Rajus Ayurveda on Instagram


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Please leave me a comment below (I love to read every single one).


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Please seek advice from a qualified practitioner before starting any new health practice.


Our Genes Do Not Necessarily Determine Our Destiny

“DNA lives in a glass case and whatever it says it is gong to be.” - Not True.

We can actively change our gene expression by making lifestyle changes.
About 70% of the genes that code for health and longevity are under our control, based on what we choose to do with our lifestyle choices and our environment.

Environmental medicine is such a hot and emerging crucial factor for health that it will be a key quality of future hospitals - altering hospital environments with various technological implementations (that cutely mimic nature) for better healing outcomes of patients.

99% of the micro RNA in your bloodstream is not from human source. It’s from microbiome.

Microbes carry 8 million strands of DNA compared to your human cells, which carry 22,000.
Microbes make up 90% of all the cells in your body.

Guys, we are mostly bugs!

And these bugs and microbial genes are altered by our environment, lifestyle, thoughts and belief system (mind and consciousness). Not by metabolic disorders or the cancer your mother and her mother had.

So drop the fear, excuse and more importantly the belief that the diseases your parents and grandparents were woefully inflicted with, have predisposed you to that similar disease.
That you have to fear getting bowel cancer because your mother, aunty and grandmother had it. That you’re genes are the reason for your disease. This is rarely the cause.
But if you think that, you invite those diseases.

Focusing on Nuclear DNA (genes) is outdated science. Mitochondrial DNA (environment and lifestyle) is where the determination is at.

Genetics are Actionable.

Become an active participant in determining your healths future.

Tips to Increase Healthy Microbiome

Breath in Microbiome

The nasal structures have turbinates that are like filters from environmental pollutants. We can enhance this with the Ayurvedic practice of Nasya - sniffing oil up the nose. Your digestive tract starts in the nose.

Breath in microbiome. Go into new environments and breathe in. Get into as many macro ecosystem as you can.

Touch A Plant

Sit next to a plant.

Step or sit in dirt.

Self-Abhyanga Oil Massage

The same amount of species of microbes that are in the gut are also on the skin.

Apply oil to the body and giving your self a massage feeds the rich microbe species that live on your skin.

In addition, self-abhyanga has plenty of fantastic other benefits like pacify the nervous system, enhance lymph and blood flow, detoxification and protect from environmental toxins and EMF.

Download your free self-abhyanga poster here.

Drink Thin Lassi (Butter Milk)

Thin lassi is like natures pharmacy and is one of the best way to get good microbiome in your stomach.

For best results, make your own yoghurt then mix 1tsp of yoghurt with 1 cup of water to make lassi.

Check you our Lassi Recipes.

Eat Ghee

Ghee has the highest source of butyric acid which is gourmet food for the beneficial Clostridium butyricum species.

Research has attested to the fact that the beneficial microbes in the gut actually make their own butyric acid, the active ingredient in butter – and even more concentrated in ghee!

For more info. check out out article The Low Down on Ghee.

Eat food directly off the organic plant it is grown on

Don’t pluck it and wait before you cook it.

Although this is great, actually munching in the garden right off the plant is a powerful way to get intimate with microbes.

Wash your hands less

Infections are transmitted by air, not by shaking someone’s hand.

Be more friendly.

References

https://www.nih.gov/news-events/news-releases/nih-human-microbiome-project-defines-normal-bacterial-makeup-body
Dr. Zach Bush


How To Harvest Wild Honey (Step-By-Step, Photo Guide)

My Guru spotted about 8 wild honey beehives nesting in various trees throughout the gated community where the Ayurvedic clinic is.

She called in experts for the medicinal harvest and it went a little something like this…

Learn about the health benefits of Honey and Ayurvedic perspective in this article: Honey: Nectar or Poison

Step 1: Hire Professionals.

Step 2: Say a Prayer to The Tree, Then Climb Up - Carrying a bunch of dried leaves + match box.

Step 3: Smoke the Hive - Bees will flee. Men on the ground keep distance to avoid stings during the swarm.

Step 4: Yank Out The Queen Bee - Keep in cloth to later relocate back into forest.

Step 5: Send Honey Comb Down to the Ground Crew - This was done via buckets and rope.

Step 6: Strain Honey and Store well away from heat.

Notice how strong these fellas are. They climb trees!

Honey Gets Better With Age

Be sure to collect your unheated honey. Since honey gets better with age. It should be minimum 2 months old before we use it.


Empowered Birthing, Doulas, Women’s Business & The Role of Men in Birth | Nadine Richardson from She Births {Podcast #023}

About Nadine Richardson

Nadine Richardson​, mother, yoga teacher, doula, speaker, creator and founder of the world’s only scientifically verified childbirth education program, She Births® and host of ​The She Births® Show​ (Podcast & YouTube).

Over the last 20 years Nadine has become an expert in childbirth, pregnancy and prenatal yoga. She is an inspiration to all parents, female entrepreneurs and those passionate about making birth better. She knows that together we can shift the cultural meme of birth from a medicalised traumatic event​ to something so much better.

“My role is to awaken people to their birthing potential. Through our innovative education every family can create not only a more normal birth but also a beautiful birth; bonding, enriching and empowering, the perfect start for every family.”
~ Nadine Richardson

It is Nadine’s mission to take the fear out of childbirth and help couples continue the joy of pregnancy right through their labour and into early parenting. By helping women connect to, and trust their bodies while also equipping partners to not only provide effective support but become an active participant in the journey we shift the locus of control. Discovering that we have agency and our choices are critical to individual birth satisfaction shifts the way we see ourselves and our role on the planet.


In This Episode We Discuss

What is a Doula

An ancient service of women helping women through birth.

“Doula” in latin = to serve.

They play a significant role assisting women through the psychosomatic experience of birth.

The Role of an Obstetrician

"Obstetrician" in Latin means "To Observe."

They should be there to intervene if more advanced medical interventions are required. Which in Australia is 10-20% of woman at high health risk.

Midwife in latin = “Be with woman.”

Midwife does the safety and vital checks - heart beat, blood pressure etc. But unfortunately they don’t get to “be with woman” as much, as they are more doing paper work. 

0.6% birth in Australia are home births.

Why every single woman should do a doula training.

It is the primal role of woman. Assisting at births is an important rite for one’s womanhood, femininity and fulfilment.

Having a Doula present at birth is the best intervention a woman can have to reduce C-Section rates.

The Role of the Partner (Mostly Men) In Birth

Have we placed to much expectations on male partners? 

Are men actually fit for the job of assisting a birthing experience? Let alone asked to be the primary! support person in an experience they have no knowledge of, what so ever!

Traditionally, birth has always been womens business. Men should not go anywhere near that.

It is criminal to send anyone in a birthing room without good education and preparation. 

C-Sections

30% C-Section rate in most western countries.

Aus has some of the higher C-section rates in the world, at 32% in public hospital.

47% in private hospitals! - nearly 1 in 2.

Causes for increasing C-section rates:

  • Over-managing low risk people.
  • Litigations.
  • Money.
  • Schedules - “Doctor Dinner: wants to shorten his day at work and get home for dinner”
  • Culture, fear and control amongst the woman.

Why you want a vaginal delivery over C-section:

  • When a baby is born via C-section they have a significant reduction in microbiome.
  • Babies born via C-section are more likely to have life-long asthma.
  • Babies born via C-section are less likely to continue breast milk.
  • Babies born via C-section are linked to increases in austism.
  • Babies born via C-section are correlated with lower IQ.
  • The recovery and “bounce back” of a mother is significantly better with vaginal delivery than a 6 week recovery from major abdominal surgery.
  • Woman who endure C-sections and more likely to get a hysterectomy in the future.

Knowing that you can make a beautiful birth no matter what unfolds (e.g. C-section, epidurals) is really critical to less fear for everybody.

C-sections are still a monumental birthing experience and we can make it beautiful with birth education programs like She Births.

"You cannot put your faith all the time in one system. If you go into these systems without education, you will get funnelled down a conveyer belt, and that is where we get great amounts of intervention and dissatisfaction. Education is key to empowerment."
~ Nadine Richardson
"You need to be open minded and have a little element of belief that birth can be something different to the medicalised traumatic event that has been showed to you on television."
~ Nadine Richardson

The post-natal hormonal orchestra that floods the mothers brain

  • 200-400x more oxytocin than the best sex orgasm.
  • Beta endorphins flood the neo-cortex which shut down the analytical mind. These are also opiates and allows the woman to transcend in between contractions and go through this extraordinary ego dissolution. 
  • Adrenaline comes at the end of labour to deliver the baby.

The Brain-Uterus Connection

Via the Ferguson reflex - a positive feedback loop between uterus and brain.

  1. Baby’s head stretches cervix and feedbacks on pituitary.
  2. Pituitary secretes oxytocin into blood and travel down to uterine muscle via specific nerve pathways. 
  3. Oxytocin stimulates the uterus to further contract of the muscles in the wall of the uterus and pushes the baby down, the cervix stretches further. oxytocin is released from the brain back into the body and goes back to the uterus for more stimulation, , cervix stretches etc. 
Ferguson reflex

The Vagina as the Seat as Consciousness

Active Birthing and why a woman should not be lying on her back during labour.

  • Squatting, on all fours, standing, whatever is comfortable for the woman.
  • Upright and active. Gravity. Shorter labour. Nishkarma yoga - do less and achieve the most. 
  • Don’t ask a woman to lie supine - this is dangerous, damaging to the pelvic floor. They have to go up a U bend. It’s a miracle they can go out. 
  • All fours are the best.
  • Mother should be dancing, move bum.

She Births: The Better Birthing Method

  • 65% reduction of epidural rates
  • 44% reduction of c-section rates
  • 53% reduction in resuscitation of babies.
  • 32mis shorter (2nd stage) labour.

The clinical trial from the prestigious British Medical Journal of Medicine. 

“Our mission is to restore the sanctity of birth, build stronger families and hand the power of birth back to every woman.”
~ Nadine Richardson

The curriculum is based on three pillars; Knowledge, Inner Strength and Outer Support.
She Births® combines evidence-based and holistic techniques for a better and safer birth experience – including active birthing, yoga, massage, acupressure, breathing, relaxation and effective partner support.

She Births® provides a comprehensive toolkit of skills for mum and partner, empowering mums to have better births and enabling partners to provide effective support. Utilising a unique philosophy the course prepares couples for every birth scenario enabling them to create a beautiful birth experience, no matter what unfolds.

She Births® is available as a ​Weekend Course or an ​Online Program via App – making it accessible across the world.

More than 8,000 expectant parents have completed She Births® from all around the world.

The Essential Post-Natal Support Network

Beyond nannies and baby sitters. The importance of immediate family. 

Soul Mama Circles - Real support and connection amongst new mothers.

The importance for women to share their birth story at least 8-10 times in a sacred space.

Post Natal Care Regimen

Ayurveda Post Natal Care Plan

  • The important to rest after birth - simple and sacred - “40 days or rest for 40 years energy.”
  • Post natal herbs to balance vata and erratic hormones post birth.
  • The fourth trimester.

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Turkey Tail: The Most Researched Mushroom Indigenous to Every Continent Except Antartica

Turkey Tail (Trametes versicolor), is a common polypore mushroom found throughout the world, including the indigenous Australian bush where we came across it, near the east coast of New South Wales.

Immune System Booster

It is effectively empowers the immune system by significantly boosting killer T cells.

Thus, it is great to use as an adjunct therapy in cancer, not as a substitute, but in association with other treatments like radiation and chemotherapy (if you resort to this), and metabolic therapy + potent Ayurvedic herbal protocol.

It raises base immune function, and especially post-treatment when the body needs to recover.

Two polysaccharide complexes in Turkey Tail are getting a great deal of scientific attention, PSK (or "Kreskin") and PSP, for their cancer-blasting effects, making Turkey Tail the most extensively researched of all medicinal mushrooms with large scale clinical trials.

A seven-year, NIH-funded clinical study in 2011 found that Turkey Tail mycelium improves immune function when dosed daily to women with stage I–III breast cancer.

The immune response including an increase of cancer-fighting cells was dose-dependent, with no adverse effects.

A Common Conventional Treatment for Cancer in Japan

PSK is now approved in Japan to treat cancer, and is often prescribed and paid for by Japan’s national health care system for those undergoing chemotherapy. However, I recommend you take the whole herb, rather than an extract.

In addition to breast cancer, Turkey Tail has been found to hold promise for other cancers, including stomach, colorectal, lung, esophageal, nasopharyngeal, cervical, and uterine.

Helps Treat Infections

Turkey tail is also being used to treat many different infections, including aspergillus niger, Candida albicans, E. coli, HIV, Herpes, and streptococcus pneumonia, and is hepatoprotective. It may also be useful for chronic fatigue.

Turkey Tail Tea

  1. Wipe the dirt of the mushroom.
  2. Rip it up a bit to open the mushroom and it’s medicinal properties.
  3. Boil it in water on low heat for a long period of time and make a decoction.
  4. Sip and enjoy.

Here is a great video for the tea.

References:

Dr. Joespeh Mercola
Clinical Study in US


Bee Venom Therapy: Anti-Inflammatory, Immune Boosting Bee Stings

The other week a bee stung my eye lid within one minute after closing my eyes for sleep.

It was a prickly blessing that absolutely shocked the hell out of me as my tired body was excitingly ready to surrender to juicy rest. 

Jumping out of my bed wondering WTF just did WTF to me!? I was wide awake. 

And I wasn’t in the bush, I was in my familiar coastal city bedroom which I had not ever even witnessed flies buzzing inside. 

But after turning the light on and finding a dead bee on my pillow, the shock turned into relief and gratitude for a blessing of intimacy with nature with a prick of medicine.

I was excited to receive my first dose of Bee Venom Therapy (BVT), and it was my eye health that first received the fortune. 

Wide-Spread Tradition

Bee Venom Therapy has been used in folk medical systems across the globe through-out history. It involves holding a live bee against the area to be treated until a sting results.

Anti-Inflammatory

The venom includes around 40 currently identified compounds including it’s primary peptide, Mellitin, an anti-inflammatory agent that is reportedly one hundred times stronger than cortisone.

The venom also stimulates the adrenal glands to produce cortisol, contributing to the anti-inflammatory effect with the body’s innate mechanisms. 

Immune Boosting

In addition, BVT jump starts the immune system to produce a healing response through the hypothalamus, pituitary, and adrenal glands, and pricks the production of endorphins, the body’s natural pain killer.

Anti-Bacterial and Anti-Viral

The antibacterial and antiviral properties of bee venom make it a unique weapon in fighting bacterial and viral ailments of the nervous system and other bodily channels and tissues.

Nerve Tissue Balancing

Perhaps one of the most remarkable characteristics of bee venom is it’s nerve balancing micro-cocktail

It contains neurotransmitters dopamine, serotonin and norepinephrine, which along with the peptide apamin, facilitate nerve transmission (vata). 

This quality of bee venom (vyavayi and vikashi gunas) grants it free access to pervade the minute neural pathways of the spine, blood brain barrier and areas of injury to help repair nerve damage and restore mobility. 

Common Conditions Treated

Common conditions treated with Bee Venom Therapy include:

  • arthritis
  • sciatica
  • back pain
  • torn ligaments and tendons
  • chronic fatigue
  • MS
  • numbness.
  • and more...

Caution

Allergic reactions can be fatal.

Use of long-term and/or strong anti-inflammatory steroids may have compromised (suppressed) the adrenal and pituitary function to the point that bee venom therapy is contraindicated.

“The administration of steroids for a period exceeding two weeks runs the risk of suppression of the adrenal cortex....In people who take large doses of corticosteroids, the function of the adrenal glands will become suppressed. This suppression occurs because these large doses prevent the hypothalamus and pituitary glands from producing the hormones that normally stimulate adrenal function.”

Excerpt from: http://www.cop-boop.org.uk/steroid_use_&_effects.htm

The Good News

No need to be afraid of bee stings anymore! Embrace the free medicinal blessings. After my I got stung, I added my medicinally stinging Ayurvedic eye drops into my swollen eye for a couple of night and my eyes were radiating with tejas (precise acuity).

Credits:

Bee Well Therapy
Dr. Jimi Wollumbin, Uki, NSW.


Absolutely Addressing Anxiety | Jonni Pollard {Podcast #022}

About Jonni Pollard

Jonni Pollard, program founder and head teacher of 1 Giant Mind, is a world-renowned meditation teacher who has studied how to unfold human potential for over 20 years under great masters in the East and West.

His programs, including 1 Giant Mind’s Learn Meditation app, have taught more than 250,000 people how to meditate.

Jonni is at the forefront of authenticity in the meditation teacher landscape, making practical translations of ancient teachings for a modern lifestyle.


In This Episode We Discuss

Exploring the infinite possibilities and capabilities of life and taking action

  • You either do something fully or not. 
  • It is possible and I’m interested. 
  • We don’t discern if it’s difficult or easy, we just do it.
  • Learn to make the uncomfortable comfortable and expand the bounders of experience in the gross dimensions of reality so that the yoga.

Jonni has has explored a diverse range of abilities in this lifetime. 

Jonni being seduced by the notion of being a recluse.

How can I make whomever I come into contact with have the truest experience of themselves by virtue of them being in my presence

All that requires if for me to be in myself fully.

People are confronted by the potential of their power, and it is generally resisted because of an underlying sense of unworthiness.

The power of the pain and memory of the past.

People prefer to maintain a certain level of suffering, rather than the idea of diving into the fear and confronting it.

The sum total of the weight of our collective suffering is the very thing that keeps us entrenched in the extraordinary destructive dysfunction that is happening on the planet now.

And The only way we can liberate ourselves from the potential outcome of annihilation is to discover the abode of love indie of use and make it our homeland evict anything that is not able to surrender at the feet of love.

Anxiety

The charge of energy that doesn’t have a grounding. Like an electrical wire that doesn’t have a grounding. It is wild and can run anywhere and inappropriately fills lines of energy that don’t require or need to receive that charge. Misdirected energy.

Establishing yourself to your Self to the extent that the earth is established in herself. 

Forces of energy and electro-magnetic frequencies creating a distortion on our planet that invariably have an impact on us human beings.  

The Cause of Every Single Disease

Becoming diligent in self-correction of the intellect.

Turning to the condition of the body for the tendency to ignore.

We are living in extraordinary unprecedented times.

Methods to pacify anxiety:

  • Grounding - barefoot on earth, swimming in ocean and bodies of water.
  • Sun exposure.
  • Human to human contact. “Heart to heart.” - Create a circuitry of frequencies and resonate. We are such a powerful remedy for each other.
  • Self-abhyanga.
  • Get busy - work, do seva (service).

Give your attention generously wherever you feel there is a deficit.

The quality of our attention established in Being has a nourishing effect that causes a flexibility and dynamism in somebody’s personality to open up and connect.

It is moistening the dryness in the branches of our being.

How to help others who experience anxiety and nourish their existence and spirit.

Psychology or psychotherapy is a very long arduous task.
Reaching the masses vs. closer communities through your service.
The mentality of trying to be the biggest, best or most well known.
Attempting to spread knowledge and do service at a large scale at the detriment of yourself and the knowledge.

Finding the balance of sufficient rest, work and play.

Leadership

  1. Having the vision.
  2. Articulating the vision.
  3. Empowering others to allow that vision to come into fruition.
  4. Primary role: the intimate relationship with team members and identifies what is required for them to truely feel empowered.

Be gentle and tender on yourself and when you see somebody else in need of that, be generous with your tenderness. 

The importance of normalising meditation in society.


Resources

Jonni hosts the 1 Giant Mind podcast where he answers questions relating to meditation and personal development from a live audience.

Jonni is also the author of The Golden Sequence: A Manual for Reclaiming Our Humanity, on Benbella books.

Ashwandha (Stresscom)

These capsules help relieve stress, general debility, fatigue, sleep issues, anxiety, neurosis and premature old age related syndromes etc.

Ashwagandha is an effective anti-stress agent and one of the most highly acclaimed adaptogens – energising the body when it needs it during the day, and calming overactive nerves for easy and restful sleep at night. It has a herbal intelligence that increases or decreases stress hormones like cortisol depending on the body’s need at any given time.

It also aids in improving the immunity of the body and physical stamina of individuals. It provides strength, rejuvenation, stamina and libido

A Superior Form of Ashwagandha:
The main ingredient Ashwagandha (Withania Somnifera) is harvested and processed in a specific method that is pure and potent, making this a superior choice to other Ashwagandha products on the market.


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Mulberry Marvels: Tonify Blood & Energise The Soul | Uses & Benefits

If the smell and sight alone of these dark potent clusters of juice don’t activate your blood…

These blood tonic berries, known as Tūta in Ayurveda, protect the cardiovascular system and “cool down” the blood, helping in inflammatory conditions like skin diseases, burning sensation, burning urination, fever and excess pitta.

That is why nature divinely organises mulberries to fruit at the beginning of summer, to hydrate and cool us down.

Eat Fruit Alone

Although the sweet, heavy (guru) and moist quality provides stable balance for excess vata and pitta in the colon, this fruit is heavy to digest, so eat it alone.

Anthropologically, we would find a bush/tree, excitingly cheer at the sight of ripe fruits, feast on as many ripe fruits as we could, and then continue our journey. No fruit salads or mixed smoothies, just one single fruit. Hopefully in abundance.

Unripe Berries, Bark & Leaves as Medicine

The sour unripe fruit is also used in Ayurvedic medicine as a laxative, however beware because it has a heating action (usna virya) which aggravates the blood and pitta and is further harder to digest.

Stick to the dark coloured ripe berries for those harvesting the common red (Morus rubra and black (morus nigra) mulberry).

In addition, the bark and leaves of this abundant tree are prepared into decoctions or pastes to help treat diseases of the throat. 

The Medicine and Joy of Foraging

Overall, just finding a tree and harvesting mulberries is incredibly energising for the body and soul. 

Then reward yourself by eating the berries or drinking the juice and be imbued with tonic energy, especially helpful for those debilitated, fatigued, breast-feeding and exhausted post-childbirth.

How To Forage Mulberries

  1. Find a tree, (they are quite common around residential areas).
  2. Sweep and place a clean sheet on the ground below (optional).
  3. Give the tree a gentle shake so the ripe berries fall onto the ground.
  4. Collect the berries.
  5. Get creative.

Ayurvedic Properties

Rasa: Madhura, Amla (depending on ripness)
Virya: Sheeta
Doshas: PV-

Synonyms: Tuta, tula, puga, kramuka, bhahmadaru

(Ripe berries).

Source; Bhavaprakasa, ch 6. Vatadi Varga (Group of trees like vata etc.).