Ayurvedic Daily Routine, Guru & Spirituality | Vaidya Aditya Raju #089

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Daily routine, “dinacharyā”, is one of the pillars of health in Ayurvedic medicine.
Integrating certain practices into your daily routine that are rooted in natural law supports one to smoothly flow on their path of evolution with minimal friction and maximum health.
This podcast features world renowned Ayurvedic doctor, Vaidya Ādityā Raju, who generously shares wisdom on the Ayurvedic daily routine in such an elaborate way like you have probably never heard before.
This episode was auspiciously recorded on the eve of the fullest moon of the year, known as "Guru Pūrṇimā.”
Thus, we explore the role of Guru - which literally translates to “that which removes darkness”, and the multitude of qualities of “Guru consciousness."

About our guest: Vaidya Aditya Raju

Vaidya Aditya Raju is a specialist in Panchakarma, Pulse diagnosis and Sukhamarma.
Aditya is the youngest son of J.R. Raju, the foremost disciple of the world-famous Vaidya Balraj Maharishi and head of the Raju Family. He is also sishya (disciple) and devotee of his holiness Maharishi Mahesh Yogi, under who’s guidance he trained for several decades of his life before the Maharishi dropped his body.
He is a visiting teacher in Italy, where he provides consulting and training to hundreds of doctors. He also serves as a consultant to Maharishi Ayurveda products Italy.
He is a visiting Ayurveda consultant to European and Asian Ayurveda Panchakarma centers.
With grace and a pure spirit, Aditya shares his vast and rich wisdom of Ayurveda, hoping to enlighten and assist as many souls as possible during this lifetime.

In this Episode we Discuss:

The Essentials of the Ayurvedic Daily Routine (Dinacharya)

Firstly, waking up in the brāma muhūrta
  • For more information on the brāhma muhūrta click here.
Drinking cool water first thing in the morning (after cleaning your teeth & scraping your tongue) and later hot water the rest of the day. 
  • This assists in the cleansing of the body & the removal of ama (undigested toxic material). 
  • After washing your teeth it is advised that you do some form of gargling or oil pulling (ideally use the special Gandusha Oil or plain sesame oil)
Nasya नस्य (sniffing a drop of nasya oil like our Nasika Oil up each nostril) to lubricate, cleanse and protect the upper srotas (channels). 
  • Advice: don’t do nasya before taking a shower, before having a meal, before going to bed nor when having a cold/flu. 
Abhyanga अभ्यङ्ग massage to stimulate the lymph & blood flow around the body, hydrate the skin & pull toxins out it + much more.
  • You can read more about abhyanga massage, how to do it and its many benefits here
  • After your self-abhyanga practice you can take a shower or bathe in the sea/ocean. The water invokes the essence of ganga, the goddess or supreme intelligence of water that is all-purifying. 
    • It cleanses on the external/superficial level.
Practicing some form of meditation will allow you to de-excite the mind & to establish yourself in a state of pure being. Meditation is the way for you to cleanse the internal and deeper level.  
  • At Vital Veda we recommend the Vedic Meditation practice. 
    • To find a Vedic meditation teacher near you click here & scroll down to “Vedic meditation”. 
There is no need to be strict with your Dinacharya. Start gradually. Explore & implement different practices out of joy.

Other Powerful Practices

Bringing awareness to your hands and observing the three main aspects of the mother divine (Lakshmi, Saraswati & Uma). You can chant the Karaagre Vasate Lakshmi mantra. 

कराग्रे वसते लक्ष्मीः करमध्ये सरस्वती

Karagrei Vasate Lakssmi ∽ Kara-Madhye Saraswati

करमूले तु गोविन्दः प्रभाते करदर्शनम्

Kara-Mūle Bhavet Gauri ∽ Prabhaate Kara-Darśanam

The upper hand is the seat of Lakshmi (fingers). The middle of palm is the seat of Saraswati, the base of the palm (lower pads & thumbs) is the seat of Gauri (Durga/Parvati). The first sight of the day has a special power and makes a deeper impression on the brain ~ especially during Brahmi Muhurta. So when we see our palms first while repeating the Mantra, we are enlivening all three special energies in our physiology because:

Before putting your feet on the ground you can chant the Samudra Vasane Devi mantra. 

समुद्रवसने देवि पर्वतस्तनमण्डले

Samudra-Vasane Devi Parvata-Stana-Mannddale

विष्णुपत्नि नमस्तुभ्यं पादस्पर्शं क्षमस्वम

Vissnnu-Patni Namas-Tubhyam Paada-Sparsham Kssamasva-Me

  • The meaning of this mantra is the following:
    • Line 1: (Oh Mother Earth) O Devi, You Who have the Ocean as Your Garments, and Mountains as Your Bosom.
    • Line 2: O Consort of Lord Vishnu, Salutations to You; Please Forgive my Touch of the Feet (on Earth, which is Your Holy Body).
  • This mantra or shloka beautifully describes the tolerance, compasion, patience and nurturing quality of earth and it is meant to enliven our appreciation for mother nature & all the organisms that it holds & provides for. 
Doing some asanas (yoga postures) and pranayama (breath regulation) early in the morning before the abhyanga
After your morning meditation, you can do a puja पूजा (a ceremonial worship). 
  • Firstly invoking Ganesha (the remover of obstacles) & afterward your Guru(s) and your ishta devata (your personal supreme deity) to show your appreciation & to ask for guidance. 
  • Everything that you do before the puja is a preparation for this moment. You first cleanse your body & mind, get established in being, and only then do you engage with the puja. 
    • This ideally is the first real “action” of the day. 
  • The puja allows for the enlivening of siddhis (divine-human capabilities)

Seasonal Routines

Ritucharya ऋतुचर्या translates to seasonal routine. The ritus are the Vedic seasons & the word charya means “routine”. 
  • The year is divided in 6 ritus of 2 months each:
    • शिशिर (śiśira) – Late winter
    • वसन्त (vasanta) – Spring
    • ग्रीष्म (grīṣma) – Summer
    • वर्षा (varṣā) – Rains
    • शरद् (śarad) – Autumn
    • हेमन्त (hemanta) – Early winter 
“There occur some special changes in environment and humans in every Ritu, and hence certain foods and exercises are specifically told for each Ritu, this process is known as Ritucharya”
Source – aruṇadatta commentary on aṣṭāṃga hrudaya, sūtra 3.1
For more information on the advised ritucharya for your specific physiology & the current ritu please schedule a consultation with Dylan. 
  • You can book a consultation with Dylan by clicking HERE.

Mantras

The regular and intentional practice of mantras allows for them to fully imbibe their essence within one’s physiology, to the point of one being able to recognize the beeja and mudra for said mantra(s) naturally. 
  • When the mantras have been assimilated to that degree, one can recite them & do their mudras at astounding speeds - beyond what can be perceived with the naked eye. 
    • It is a level of mantra-mastery that is often only achieved by the most dedicated brahmins.
  • This deep familiarization with mantras has epigenetic repercussions, to the point where the energetic effects of these primordial sounds on one’s nervous system ends up being passed down to one’s own progyny.

What is “Guru” गुरु?

The traditional role of the guru is to allow for the shishya (disciple) to chip away old habits,  also known as Vṛtti(s) वृत्ति, that do not contribute to the evolution of the spirit.  
  • The cleansing of our karma & samskaras becomes severely accelerated when under the guidance of a master. 
  • When these imperfections are removed by means of a specific sadhana (spiritual practice), all that is left is pure chitta (awareness). 
The meaning of jagadguru जगद्गुरु - a term composed of the words jagat which means “the entire world” and guru meaning “spiritual master” or literally “remover of darkness”. 
  • A jagadguru is a spiritual master of the whole world.
  • There are several jagadgurus recognized in history, amongst them the legendary spiritual master Adi Shankaracharya, founder of the Advaita Vedanta school of philosophy; Veda Vyasa, the master who compiled the Vedas; and even Lord Kṛṣṇa who gifted the world with a lot of wisdom, especially in the Bhagavad Gita.
How Gurus manage to engage with the world in a completely frictionless manner due to their unique level of transcendence. 
  • Being established in pure being allows for one to flow through life effortlessly, free of attachment. 

The field of guru consciousness
A guru can be anything and anyone. A guru is everything that teaches you a lesson and removes darkness from your life. 
  • Guru can be a traditional master, but it can also be a mother, a father, a friend, one’s sangha (spiritual community), an event/experience, and even elements of nature like a tree, a butterfly or a stone.
The Mother is the first guru of everyone.  

Guru-Sishya Relationships
How these relationships come to be.
The love and devotion between student & master.

The Vedas & The Idea of “Spirituality”

Spirituality in the Vedas is not merely religious practices. It is not an isolated concept or something that is practiced in isolation from other things. 
The Vedas show that spirituality permeates everything, and all things can be spiritual. In the Vedas mathematics are spiritual, science is spiritual, the medical system (Ayurveda) is spiritual, etc. 
All things are integrated with each other in the Vedas, everything is a part of the whole, hence there is a Saṃbandha संबन्ध (connection) between all things.

Vargas (Caste System)

The karma of family lineages.

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


Lower Back Discomfort, & Ayurvedic Remedies to Help Rectify Lower Back Pain

Lower Back Pain
The most troublesome area of the spine is the lumbar (lower back) region. Its problems are multifarious.
The paravertebral muscles stemming from the sacrum and iliac crest become stiff and painful. Vertebral discs become diffused, desiccated (degenerate), herniated or bulge.
The spaces within your spine become narrow (spinal stenosis), putting pressure on your spinal nerves. Nerve obstruction, sciatica where nerve pain radiates in the hips and maybe down the legs.
Torn ligaments in the spine, Spondylolisthesis, (bones slip our of place), vertebral fractures, spasms, osteoporosis… the list goes on.
Problems in the lower back can occur due to injury, improper exercise (you may not even know it), sedentary lifestyle, improper digestion, and the build-up of emotional, sexual, and menstrual tensions.
The muscles of the spine may even become unbalanced if the bodyweight is not equally divided between both legs, due to some imbalances of the lower limbs.
If one is overweight, this adds extra strain on the lumbar (lower back) region.
Back pain
Slipped disc and sciatica are caused when the cartilaginous ring of the shock-absorbing spinal discs ruptures and creates pressure on the nerves between the vertebrae. This can be excruciatingly painful.
If the discs degenerate, friction from one vertebrae moving against the other can cause further wear and degeneration of the vertebrae along with a great deal of pain.
Unfortunately, many have become accustomed to lower back discomfort, and this dull body becomes the norm and they don’t recognise this as an issue, nor act on it. They have temporarily lost the cellular memory of a free and healthy body that is their natural state.
Ayurveda luckily has a wide variety of interventions to help.
I always say to my clients who are considering or who have been recommended any type of surgery, if it’s not an emergency (most cases) try natural methods before lastly resorting to surgery.
Graphic of the Spine Anatomy Labeled
I have seen people turn around the need for spinal surgeries, particularly disc disectomies but also spinal decompression procedures, after implementing proper Ayurvedic treatment coupled with appropriate exercise, sometimes other therapies and definitely a passionate action-filled drive to heal themselves.
Most pain in the lower back can be treated without surgery. In fact, surgery often does not relieve the pain; research suggests that 20-40% of back surgeries are unsuccessful.(1) This lack of success is so common that there is a medical term for it: “Failed back surgery syndrome.”

A handful things you can do for Lumbar Freedom and prevent lower back complications:

1. Regular Yoga Asana (poses) - I highly recommend “Sūrya Namaskar“ or “Sun Salutations”. This sequence of 12 asanas works all the major muscle groups and organs, and regular proper practice of this sequence helps improve the condition of the spine and may very well ensure a lifetime free from back problems. If you already have severe back problems, ensure to work one-on-one with a qualified yoga teacher or therapist to adjust appropriately for you.
2. Move - Counter your sedentary lifestyle with getting up from your desk every 1 hour and perform the 1-minute spinal sequence by Simon Borg Olivier on Youtube. Diversify your work positions - check out @vitalveda Instagram reel on alternative work postures. O, and stop running on concrete - run barefoot on grass or sand instead.
3. Oil Massage - Daily abhyanga (full-body oil massage) will help prevent lower back problems, particularly degeneration but so many of them. If you already have deeper spine issues, use special medicated oils warmed before massaging them into the local areas of concern.
Yoga asana in the beach
Follow with heat. We also have some medicated herbal pastes (Upanaha Leham & Marma Lepam) to apply to the areas of pain and obstruction.
4. Ayurvedic Body Therapies (“Back Bastis”) - This where we really see clients establish lumbar freedom and shift imbalances. “Kati, Greeva & Pṛṣṭa Bastis” are traditional Ayurvedic body treatments where warm medicated, analgesic oil is “held” over the targeted vertebrae. The oil and the herbs penetrate deep into tissues of muscle, fat, ligaments, tendons, bone, bone marrow and nerves. Stiff and tight muscles may instantly become lubricated and softened, to help solve many of the problems mentioned.
    • For our clients outside of Sydney and around the world, we provide a special medicated oil for your local Ayurvedic therapist to use on you. This makes a big difference. Reach out to us if interested.
5. Internal Herbs - Various herbs in Ayurveda work on different problems and the root of them. They help relieve pain, inflammation, sprain & spams, nourish the disc, prevent degeneration, repair nerve damage and heal ligament injury.

Lumbar freedom (lumbaton plus)

Helps give freedom from lower back pain.
Helps restores the freedom of movement and liberate from low back pain.
This medicine is also administrated for joint pain, swelling, and sprain. It is formulated using quality natural herbs.
  • Helps relieve pain and inflammation.
  • Helps relieve sprain and muscular spasms.
  • Nourishes the disc and helps prevent degeneration.
  • Helps repair nerve damage.
  • Helps heal ligament injury.

Cervical freedom (cervilon)

Used for Fibromyalgia, Cervical Spondylosis, Upper Back Pain
Benefits:
  • Corrects the dehydration of the intervertebral disks
  • Arrests the degenerative changes of the cervical spine
  • Strengthen the para-vertebral muscles of the neck
  • Relieves myo-fascial spasm
  • Provides mild anti-inflammatory action
Cervical Freedom is effective in treating neck pain, Upper back pain, knee pain, shoulder pain, fibromyalgia, osteoarthritis, Cervical spondylosis, stiffness, tingling & numbness.
This medicine is also administrated for joint pain, swelling, and sprain. It is formulated using quality natural herbs.
  • Helps relieve pain and inflammation.
  • Helps relieve sprain and muscular spasms.
  • Nourishes the disc and helps prevent degeneration.
  • Helps repair nerve damage.
  • Helps heal ligament injury.

Sciatino (sciatilon)

Used in the treatment of Lumbar Spondylosis, Sciatica, and many other issues in the lower back.

Swarna Dhatu

Restore, Regenerate & Strengthen Tissues
Stabilises the Physiology
Restores and regenerates nerves, bones and tissues, because it nourishes and strengthens all seven layers of the dhatus (tissues) in the body.
Helps to strengthen and stabilise the whole system.
Similar to Dhatu but more powerful.
Can be used by pregnant women to provide strength for woman and foetus.
Swarna Dhatu (Golden Nourisher) by Vital Veda

Special Matra Basti

Works on apāna vāta (pelvic floor and lower back), helps release nerve obstructions, removes blockages from the musculoskeletal structure, aids with joint health, and works on the cellular level all throughout the body.
Special Matra Basti Oil by Vital Veda

Shodana Vati

A powerful detoxification agent and whole-body cleansing rasayana.
  • Best free radical scavenger and anti-oxidant that helps eliminate ama (toxins).
  • Helps in gastrointestinal disorders, trouble passing bowel motions, dry stools, constipation, tissues, piles/haemorrhoids. 
  • Immune modulator.
  • Blood purifier.
  • Helps in allergies.
  • Helps in tooth and oral problems.
Shodana Vati
  • Helps in female problems and helps clear out toxins accumulated.
  • Helps balance cholesterol and metabolism.
  • Helps in chronic cough.
  • Very helpful in eye disorders.
  • Helpful in overcoming addictions.
  • Helps clear the skin by clearing out the toxins accumulated in the tissues. Helps in eczema, psoriasis, hives and other skin conditions.

MGP Oil

Oil for sore muscles, pain, joint issues, arthritis. Can be used for Ayurvedic treatments musculo-skeletal bastis.

6. Good Diet and Digestion - Particularly associated with the large intestine and excess “air” in the gut.
7. Rest During Menstrual Period - This has a big correlation with the lower back and pelvic floor. Check out our articleAyurvedic Guide to Healthy Menstruation.”.
And there are a lot more things for you to for your specific spine and physiology.
MGP Oil (Joints & Muscles) by Vital Veda
Not only when it gets bad, but to PREVENT common ailments. Reach out for some spinal liberation - we do online consultations and treatments in our Sydney clinic.

Base of Spine, Sacrum and Dūrgā (Divine Power)

According to the Vedas, the lower tip of the spinal cord and the sacrum is the source of energy, called “Shakti”.
This source of power is also known asDūrgāin the Vedas, the aspect of consciousness with immense feminine power to remove obstacles so evolution can transform and proceed.
The sacrum is the center of glandular activities and all of the body’s energy.
The sacral bone in the vertebral column is the base and support of the entire vertebral column and nervous system.
The sacrum has eight nerves that correspond to Dūrgā’s eight arms, according to Dr Tony Nader, author of Human Physiology, Expression of Veda and the Vedic Literature.
The filum terminale is also at the tip of the spine. It is a delicate strand of about 20cm of fibrous tissue, about 20 cm in length. It gives longitudinal support to the spinal cord and represents the infinite silence of the Veda in the first maṇdala of Ṛk Veda, according to Maharishi Mahesh Yogi.
Goddess Dūrgā at the sacrum shields and protects the total infinite silence of her consort Shiva at the filum terminale.
How do you care for your lower back? Comment 👇

Iron Deficiency Anemia? – Boost Your Ferritin Levels Naturally

Red Blood Cells

- The Ayurvedic treatment for iron deficiency -

Iron is a mineral that serves several important biological functions, its main one being to carry oxygen throughout your body via your red blood cells (1). 
Iron deficiency has become the biggest mineral deficiency in the world. (3)
About 20% of women, 50% of pregnant women, and 3% of men do not have enough iron in their bodies. (2)
Adolescent girls are most vulnerable, due to increased iron demand, menstrual blood loss, infection, etc. (4)
Disorders of iron metabolism are among the most common diseases of humans and are related to a broad variety of diseases and clinical manifestations.
The solution for iron deficiency, in many cases, is to consume more foods high in iron. (2)
Iron is an essential nutrient, meaning you must get it from external sources like food and/or quality supplementation (read about effective and safe supplementation below). 
Red Blood Cells

What is Haemoglobin, Red Blood Cells and Ferritin?

Serum iron - the amount of iron in your blood.
Haemoglobin - The body transports oxygen to cells via a protein called hemoglobin, which is mostly iron.
Low iron levels mean you’re unable to deliver oxygen or energy to the cells of your body. This is called anaemia, which means “without oxygen.”
Woman yawning
Symptoms of anaemia include:
  • Tiredness / fatigue
  • Weakness
  • Dizziness
  • Low immunity
  • Headaches
  • Stomach pain
  • Pale skin (in Ayurveda, the name for anemia is “Pāṇḍu” पाण्डु  which means “pale white”)
  • Joint pain
  • Cognitive decline
  • Mood instability
  • Fast heart rate. (5, 6)
Often these symptoms occur even when iron levels are still in the “normal range” of a blood test.
This may indicate a more common issue, ferritin deficiency. 
Serum ferritin (stored iron) - a protein that stores iron and releases it into the bloodstream as the body requires. 
This is the main factor to consider when assessing your iron panel and blood analysis.
Low Ferritin Levels are associated with: (7)
Total iron-binding capacity (TIBC) - How much transferrin (a protein) is free to carry iron through your blood. If your TIBC level is high, it means more transferrin is free because you have low iron.

Blood Testing for Iron - What are the Ideal Ferritin Levels?

Average normal ferritin levels range from 12 to 300 nanograms per milliliter of blood (ng/mL) for males and 12 to 150 ng/mL for females. (8)
Remember “normal” in standard blood tests is based on the “norm” or average of an unhealthy population. 
Most experts agree ideal ferritin levels are somewhere between 30 and 60 ng/mL. (9)
Above 80-100ng/ml is dangerous (see high iron and hemochromatosis below), and below 20 is too low.

The Relationship Between Vitamin C and Iron

Vitamin C boosts the absorption of iron, so low Vitamin C levels may be a causative factor of low ferritin levels. (10,11,12)
Fruit, veggies and herbs to boost Vitamin C levels:
  • Davidson Plum (Native Australian plum)
  • Citrus fruits
  • Papaya
  • Broccoli
  • Kiwi fruit
  • Brussel sprouts
  • Mango
Anand Sidhi Yogi, an Ayurvedic herb that helps treat iron deficiency

Ways to Naturally Boost Iron & Ferritin

The Ayurvedic treatment for iron deficiency consists of a holistic approach that will ultimately ensure that you not only incorporate proper sources of iron into your diet & lifestyle, but that your body also develops an enhanced capacity to assimilate iron from these sources.

Iron Increasing Foods

Heme iron sources (animal products, easier to absorb iron), from highest to lower concentration: (1)
  • Oysters, mussels
  • Blood Cockle (iron levels range from 227.85 - 247.98 ppm) - This is very high source of iron so caution even needs to be taken. (16)
  • Goat or chicken liver
  • Sardines
  • Turkey
  • Ham
  • Fish like wild salmon
Oysters served on a plate with lemon slides
Non-heme iron sources (not as easily absorbed, but is possible to obtain sufficient iron), from highest to lower concentration:(1,13)
  • Moringa leaves (can used dried leaves or powder if fresh is not available). Do not cook for maximum iron, just sprinkle on and mix into hot dish.
  • Spinach (lightly cooked, when raw, iron is blocked by oxalates). Organic and fresh as possible is best.
  • Amaranth leaves (lightly cooked)
  • Seeds - pumpkin, sesame, squash and sunflower seeds.
  • Cooked beans and lentils (e.g. kidney beans, white beans, chickpeas, black beans)
  • Firm tofu (beware that soy is a phytoestrogen and may cause hormonal imbalance)
  • Dried figs (careful those with high blood sugar)
  • Baked potato with skin (organic. Beware, increases vata).
  • Plantain (green banana) cooked
  • Blackstrap molasses
  • Dried fruits (apricots, raisins, figs, dates, prunes etc)
  • Nuts (peanuts, pecans, walnuts, pistachios, roasted almonds, roasted cashews)
  • Warrigal greens (New Zealand spinach)
  • Broccoli
  • Pomegranate, papaya
  • Figs (fresh), kiwi fruit
Related article: Which leafy green vegetable has the highest amount of iron? (article coming soon!)

Soak Your Beans and Lentils

When you soak beans, a compound called phytic acid is released and removed from the bean or lentil.
If you do not soak the beans, this compound stays in the bean, and when ingested in the gastro-intestinal-tract, it latches onto iron and removes iron from the body.
Related article: Phytic Acid in Beans

Cooking in Iron Cookware

This is actually a significant way to increase iron in the body.
And of course, it is an ancient Ayurvedic remedy for low iron!
When you cook food in iron vessels, it reacts with the metal surface and the iron gets released in the food.
“Food prepared in iron pots increases the haemoglobin concentration of anaemic/iron deficient individuals.” (14)
Foods that have a higher moisture content absorb the most iron.
For example, one study published in the Journal of the American Dietetic Association found that the iron content in 100 grams of spaghetti sauce jumped from 0.6 mg to 5.7 mg after being cooked in a cast iron pot! (15)
That iron load is equivalent to about 200 grams of cooked spinach!
So instead of adding 200 grams of cooked spinach into your lunch-time pasta for 52% of your recommended daily iron, just cook the pasta in an iron pot! (or add the spinach to double the iron content).
Other factors that boost the iron content of foods include:(15)
  • Longer cooking time in the iron vessel
  • Frequent stirring
  • Cooking iron-rich foods in an iron vessel.
  • Use cast iron, rather than the glazed iron.
A cast Iron pan
Acidic foods may absorb more iron also, however sour or acidic foods may react with the iron to create an unpleasant metallic taste. 
Iron vessels are also commonly used in certain Ayurvedic herbal preparations.

Related article: Cooked vs. Raw Food Diet: Transcend Food Fads | Dylan Smith #025

Self-Pulse: Self-Referral Technique and Healing Mechanism to Optimise Iron in the Body

Self-pulse reading
Utilising the self-referral technique of Ayurvedic self-pulse reading can be an intimate and effective tool to gain insight into the levels and sufficiency of your own mineral levels and tissue health.
It is particularly useful to use while you experiment with various interventions like herbs, foods or cooking methods to monitor and gauge the changes in your pulse and hence, the changes in your mineral levels.
You may also share your self-research and insights with your Vaidya (Ayurvedic physician) to refine the process.
Self-pulse is a profound way to gain an insight into your mineral levels that has the potential to be far deeper and holistic than standard blood tests.

Ayurvedic Herbs that Boost Iron

When it comes to the Ayurvedic treatment for iron deficiency, herbal formulas become a key component in the holistic approach. 

Here's a list of our top Ayurvedic formulas to increase iron levels and enhance the body's natural capacity to absorb & assimilate iron from food:

Iron Mineral - The Ayurvedic Way: Loha Bhasma (Iron Ash)
Bhasma is the highly acclaimed Ayurvedic process of purifying a mineral or metal, then calcifying it into ash, then utilising it in a herbal formulation for internal use.
This is a highly advanced and extensive process which creates an end-product that is very different to the original elemental metal.
Bhasmas have the ability to penetrate certain parts of the body very well.
For example, iron molecules are too large to enter the cells, but the bhasma is reduced to nano-particle size, so it can enter the cellular level. The body actually absorbs it effectively.
The purification method (śodana saṃskāra) of minerals is given extreme importance in Ayurveda. It not only makes the mineral and metal more hygienic and safe, but enhances the potency.
One of my favourite classical Ayurvedic formulations that involve loha bhasma (iron ash) is Punarnavadi Mandura.
This herbal preparation promotes cellular re-incarnation, revitalises and restores iron and the lymph system (rasa and rakta dhatu).

Blood Toner (Ayurvedic Raktda herb formula)
Raktda is an ayurvedic supplement that helps maintain optimum hemoglobin levels naturally, boosts energy, and is effective for iron deficiency/anemia.
It enhances your bodies ability to absorb iron naturally from your diet.
This formula is safe (and effective) for pregnant woman.
A wonderful benefit of quality Ayurvedic herbs including iron bhasma is mostly they do not cause constipation or have side effects.
Rakda, an Ayurvedic herb that is very efficient to treat iron deficiency

Iron Supplementation (Nutraceuticals)

Iron supplementation is normally not the answer (long term) and will only lead to more oxidised iron in our system and further iron accumulation in the liver.
Just like iron rusts (oxidises), the same happens in your body with excess iron, which accelerates ageing and tissue degeneration.
Furthermore, iron nutraceutical supplements aren’t the easiest to digest. The liver may find it hard to metabolise and it may cause some digestive issues like constipation.
Iron Infusions:
While iron infusions can provide rapid relief when someone is very iron deficient, it usually doesn’t fix the underlying problem.
In my clinic, I see patients who have been recommended or received iron infusions when their blood markers have not been so dangerously low. 
A potential side effect of iron infusions is the strain and pressure on the kidneys. The kidneys will have to process and eliminate iron which has not undergone proper purification. At least when supplementing with tablets, the un-purified iron gets metabolised by the liver. In the case of intravenous supplementation, it is bypassing the liver and digestive process.
We need to look at why the body is not utilising iron properly
Bio-available copper and other minerals play a role. As do hormones, digestion, and absorption capacity. 
I find assessing the overall metabolism, hormones and energy function of the individual with Ayurveda more effective than a reductionist approach of getting caught up with the numbers and levels of specific minerals.
Iron supplementation can be helpful to acutely address iron depletion or deficiency, but please consider using herbal support, diet and optimising digestion to increase iron levels first.

Jyotish (Vedic Astrology)

Iron (loha) is associated with Saturn (Shani).
Wearing an iron ring on your middle finger (check with your local Jyotishi if this is right for you), using iron vessels to cook with, donating iron or using iron in other ways may enhance and pacify Saturn energy.

To learn more about the effects that Jyotish can have on your health check out "Jyotish: Celestial Organisation of Life with Vedic Astrology | Blaine Watson #041"

Sings of the Zodiac

Caution: HIGH Iron Levels

Excess iron in most cases is even more harmful than low iron and more common!
Hemochromatosis - the term for when your body absorbs too much iron from the foods you eat, can be toxic, cause free oxidative damage and even if overdosed can even be life-threatening.
Always get a blood test before starting any iron supplementation.
Hemochromatosis Treatment:
Luckily, an effective treatment for hemochromatosis is very simple and free - donate blood according to your levels. This may have to be done regularly throughout the year.
One Ayurvedic treatment which also helps plus helps work at the root level is rakta mokṣana (“blood liberation”) by blood-letting treatments like leech therapy. 
Turmeric in high amounts is also an effective chelator of iron, which can be used when iron is elevated. (9) Note, those with low iron should not reduce turmeric, it will actually help build blood when you need it, or clean the blood when you need that instead.
How do you balance your iron levels? Comment below!

EMF EXPANDED: Geo-Electric & Human Generated Radiation | Gerard Bini #085

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Awareness of Electro-Magnetic Fields (EMF) is increasing.
People are becoming more conscious about the frequencies emitted from technological devices like phones, WiFi, computers, cell-phone towers, smart meters etc.
But underneath these superficial frequencies emitted from man-made devices emits over 30 different types of harmful EMR fields in our homes and workplaces including Electromagnetic Radiation (EMR), Earth Radiation (Geopathic Stress), Bioplasmic Radiation (Human Generated) and Solar and Planetary Radiation imprints.
This episode with explores the subtle and powerful types of EMR and EMF thatḥumans are exposed to, and that you may have never even considered.  
Health Practitoner Dylan Smith interviews Gerard Bini, the foremost Australian expert in the development of Electromagnetic Radiation (EMR) harmonizing products, as they reveal these 
“hidden frequency fields” and how to mitigate them.

About our guest: Gerard Bini

Gerard Bini, founder of Orgone Effects Australia and the foremost Australian expert in the development of Electromagnetic Radiation (EMR) harmonizing products, is a well-respected and internationally renowned Intuitive Building Biologist with 21 years' experience and research into EMF beyond the normal.
Gerard has acute intuitive senses that have been honed over many years of practice.
Intuitive processes fully involves scientific protocols of multiple testing, double blind testing, surveys of experiments to track and neutralize different types of EMF fields to produce, over time, statistical data to back up the results of whatever we are testing. Not just an ‘in my own mind it works’ attitude.
Gerard Bini
It is the knowledge base of Gerard Bini, an Intuitive Building Biologist and EMF Consultant, with his advanced intuitive energy reading and dowsing skills developed over many years, that all contribute to the uniqueness and outstanding performance of all Orgone Effects® products, which are sold in over 20 countries around the world.

In this Episode we Discuss:

Measuring Solar Wind Speed

The solar wind is a stream of charged particles released from the upper atmosphere of the Sun, called the corona. This plasma mostly consists of electrons, protons and alpha particles with kinetic energy between 0.5 and 10 keV.
Gerard checks spaceweather.com not only first thing in the morning but multiple times a day. 
Very high/strong solar winds generate a geoelectric current through the ground of the earth, which is then radiated up out of the ground. 
  • Strong solar wind speeds = 500km/second and upward.
    • Generates geo-electric current throughout the ground of the earth. can be 1.5m - 15m up the ground.
  • This radiation can cause a huge amount of geopathic stress in the body 
    • Geopathic stress happens when energies emanating from the earth cause ill health in human beings. 
Certain planetary arrangements like retrogrades can also lead to severe spikes in cosmic radiation, which has an impact on our physiologies. 

Human Generated Radiation Imprints

When someone dies in a state of distress they will always leave a positively charged bioplasmic imprint. 
Yogis that die by attaining maha samadhi only leave negatively charged bioplasmic imprints. 
When you measure the energies in the crypts of ancient civilizations like native Australian tribes, you find that the energy is very harmonious and negatively charged.
On the contrary, when going to the local cemetery, the energies tend to be very positive and abrasive. 

How to Measure The Radiations Accurately

Gerard is very fond of the Biotensor tool, which allows him to measure the Bio-field of a certain area. 

He has mastered the discernment to intuitively look at a property and its surroundings and have an accurate feel of the bio-field of the land. 

Negative charges tend to be beneficial for humans and positive charges tend to be more inflammatory and act in detriment to our health.

The Effects of Radiation in The Human Physiology

The Human Generated bioplasmic imprint left by previous land owners of a property can affect someone who is moving into a new house. 
  • E.g. If a previous land owner had a chronic disease, the whole house but particularly the sleeping area will be charged with his/her bioplasmic imprint. If the new bed is placed in the same place, that imprint can affect the new owner and promote the emergence of the same disease in their own body. 
There are hebenefitial geoelectric currents called Ley Lines. 
In general terms, bodies of water such as lakes, rivers, seas & the ocean have negative charges that can be beneficial for humans. 
  • If the solar winds are too high, these charges can be knocked down and turned positive (detrimental). 
Fissure / water veins - affects the body via stress.
Creates a kinetic energy charge and a radiation field roughly about 4m wide.

How Ancient Cultures Harmonised Geo-Electric Stressors

Harmonisers of different types have been around for thousands of years. 
In Autobiography of a Yogi, Sri Yukteswar gives Yogananda an astrological bracelet made of copper silver and gold which is a very well known form of a harmoniser. 
Mantra chanting can also chant as a harmoniser because it can produce a negative or positive charge that can help cancel out other frequencies. 
Smoking ceremonies done by native indigenous tribes also act as harmonisers. 

Building Biology

Building biology is the science that investigates the health hazards in any built environment. 
Mold, technological infrastructure, geopathic stress & 5G exposure are some of the most pressing issues that most buildings face. 
Streetlights and their devastating relationship with 5G. 

EMF Blocking Technology

It’s a very amateur Industry where a lot of production is being made without having proper science to back up the products. 
Marketers are exploiting the market and putting as many products out there as possible and they are not effective. 
Gerard started producing harmonisers almost 20 years ago and has refined the technology immensely to produce state-of-the-art harmonisers. 
The Effect of Electronic Watches
They are pumping EMF straight into your bloodstream.

Being Conscious and Aware vs. Fearing EMF

It’s not a matter of falling into despair or becoming paranoid or fearful for these frequencies. That will only increase their detriment to your life. 
It is more a matter of understanding and becoming aware  so that we can take appropriate action to reduce their impact on our daily lives.

Resources

Gerard’s website - Orgone Effects Australia - HERE

Orgone Effects Australia’s Instagram (@orgoneeffectsaustralia) HERE

-

Bio-tensor - a traditional tool used by building biologists to show the charge of a field.

Related Episodes:

EMF, 5G & Building Biology | Nicole Bijlsma #019

Mould: The Hidden Stealth Fungi You Need To Know About | Dr. Jill Crista #030


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Hollywood to the Himalayas: Deeper Connections & Euphoric Love | Sadhvi Bhagawati Saraswati #082

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Sometimes, the commitment and joy associated with the path of liberation or enlightenment is so strongly rooted in Absolute Stillness that the seeker may become what is know as a “sanyasi” or renunciant.

By taking vows of renunciation, one fully and wholeheartedly commits to commune with all of creation in a loving and intimate manner.

While the path of a renunciant (sanyasi) is less common and generally less relevant than the path of a householder (gṛhasthī), there’s a lot we can learn from surrendering ego and desires, and there’s a lot we can learn from this episode's very special guest: best-selling author, Himalayan yogi, renunciant & social activist, Sadhvi Bhagawati Saraswati.

Based on the banks of the Himālayas in Rishikesh, India, but originally born in LA, California, Sadhviji renounced her life in the West at age 29 after a career at Stanford University and has now become one of the premier female authorities in the Yoga-Vedantic tradition in the world.

Her wisdom and light exude from her as she elevates us with stories and insights on how to find purpose in life & how to live in harmony with our Selves and the world that surrounds us.

About our guest: Sadhvi Baghawati Saraswati

Sadhviji is a renowned spiritual leader and motivational speaker, based in Rishikesh, India. Originally from Los Angeles, California, and a graduate of Stanford University, Sadhviji has lived on the banks of the sacred Ganga river, in the lap of the Himalayas for nearly 25 years engaged in spiritual service, wisdom teaching, sacred action, and deep spiritual practice.
At Parmarth Niketan, Rishikesh, where she lives most of the year, she gives daily spiritual discourses (satsang), teaches meditation, provides spiritual counselling and mentoring, and oversees myriad charitable and humanitarian projects and activities.
She is President of Divine Shakti Foundation, a charitable organisation bringing education and empowerment to women and children.
She is Secretary-General of Global Interfaith WASH Alliance, the first alliance of religious leaders for Water, Sanitation and Hygiene.

In this Episode we Discuss:

The Meaning of The Name: Sadhvi Bhagawati Saraswati

Sadhvi - renunciant (the female form of the word “Sadhu”)
Bhagawati - divine mother
Saraswati - the goddess of creation, wisdom & music. It is also a signature of her lineage (Shankaracharya tradition).

Doing a PhD in Stanford and Leaving to India

She was seeking something different, something that resonated with the strict vegetarian lifestyle she was living. 
Experiencing major consciousness shifts while in India and tuning into a higher calling - her true dharma

Becoming A Sanyasi (Renunciant)

What motivated her to take vows of renunciation.
Her view on materialism and the mainstream path re-enforced by capitalism.
How celibacy and renunciation impacted her life and why she continues to keep her vows.

Spirituality and The Importance of Having a Spiritual Practice

How spirituality enhances our lives and helps us feel more fulfilled and blissful. 

Ganga Devi (a.k.a. The Ganges River)

The story of Ganga explains how she was a goddess, long before she became embodied in the river that we today know as Ganges. 
She came down from heaven onto earth to bring about liberation. 

Our Relationship to Nature and Ecology

The decrepit state of affairs of the ecology in India.
Sadhviji’s ecological start-ups. 
How us as humans have a serious responsibility to maintain and take care of nature, the source of all life.

Resources

Sadhviji's Website HERE

Sadhviji's Instagram (@sadhviji) HERE


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Depression, Anxiety & Ayurvedic Mind-Harmonisation

Dylan Smith looking at the sea
Drugs for depression, anxiety, and attention problems are given out in huge numbers almost like a new panacea.
Apparently we can change our brain chemistry and balance our emotional state with drugs alone.
We aren’t being taught to first consider natural alternatives or lifestyle changes
In this approach, we are also losing sovereign composure over of our own brain chemistry.
We are now becoming dependent upon and perhaps even addicted to drugs for our sense of well-being and to maintain “balance” in our physiology throughout the circumstances of life.
This doesn’t only refer to anti-depressants, chemical sedatives, benzodiazepine (anti-anxiety), Methylphenidate (ADHD), or amphetamines alone, but we can develop an unsustainable relationship with nutraceuticals, supplements, narcotics, psychedelics, and our bi-monthly “plant-medicine ceremony.”
All the above certainly have their time and place in mental disease or imbalance, and no doubt can be extremely useful. I have seen them to be lifesaving for patients in my clinic. 
Pills
But I believe overall we need to create a greater perception for a holistic way of balancing the mind and nervous system and treating mental illness. 
Luckily, nature did not leave us without natural medicines for the mind. There are special herbs that support improvement of the mind, mental state, senses, brain and nervous system.
There are a group of herbs in Ayurveda called “Medhya Rasāyanas” that have been taken for millennia to “rejuvenate wisdom”, expand states of consciousness, promote deeper meditations, rejuvenate the mind and improve brain function.
And now, they have a new application in our modern age - to mitigate mind disturbance from screens, social media, work, relationships, collective stress, mental toxins, media etc.
One of my favorite Medhya Rasāyanas for this application is the powerful herbal formula “Bliss” by One Eleven Health.
But it is not just about supporting the body’s nervous system and mind with herbal rejuvenators, we also have to consider other such factors for balancing mental health for a radiant mind and body:
Bliss by One Eleven Health
  1. A suitable meditation practice for that individual
  2. Light cycles - what light are you exposed to in the day and after sunset?
  3. Prana (Life-force) content of food, water, and air
  4. Sun-exposure
  5. Time in nature
  6. Counseling
  7. Relationships and community
  8. Time in energetic vortexes of healing (vāstu / Vedic architecture)
  9. Electromagnetic fields
  10. Sleep
  11. Activity, work, service, role in society and community (dharma)
  12. Working with a quality health practitioner
  13. Body-work therapies and treatments
Please reach out for any support in balancing your mind and emotional state. You have the capacity to and birth-right for emotional and mental stability, we have to enliven the memory of that.
How do you promote the health of your mind and nervous system? Please comment below to inspire others.

Creating Your Own Reality & Reprogramming the Subconscious Mind | Bruce Lipton #081

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Understanding that our bodies are energy and emit energy is a foundational fact in reclaiming our state of perfect health.
Health that not only resides within the boundaries of our own clothed bags of flesh and bone, but health that is simultaneously dependent on the reality of the environment that surrounds us.
Internationally recognised leader in bridging science and spirit, stem cell biologist, bestselling author and recipient of the Goi Peace Award, Dr. Bruce Lipton has the outstanding capacity to break down the relationship between the health of our body, spiritual Self, and our surrounding environment.
Learn how to powerfully influence the reality that you experience. It is truly one of the most empowering abilities that one can pursue.
Dive deep into the journey of re-discovery and come out the other end with the tools and wisdom to take a grip on your own reality and better life for yourself and those around you.

About our guest: Bruce Lipton

Bruce H. Lipton, PhD is an internationally recognized leader in bridging science and spirit. Stem cell biologist, bestselling author of The Biology of Belief and recipient of the 2009 Goi Peace Award, he has been a guest speaker on hundreds of TV and radio shows, as well as keynote presenter for national and international conferences.
Bruce Lipton

In this Episode we Discuss:

Re-Conceiving The Concept of Self

Understanding ourselves not as humans trying to have a spiritual experience, but as spiritual beings having a human experience. 

The analogy of the screen: our bodies and minds act as T.V. Screens that display the broadcast that our souls emit. When the T.V. perishes, the broadcast certainly doesn’t die with it, these are two separate things. 

Even on the surface cellular level, there is an indistinguishable self that is expressed in the form of “Self Receptors” which act as cellular ‘antennas downloading a signal’.

  • The cells in each person’s body have a distinguishable set of different Self Receptors. 
  • There was an experiment done where it was proven that cells remain connected to their original host even after being separated from 100 miles. The cells were harvested and put into a petri dish, then taken 100 miles away from the subject. When the subject was subjected to emotional stimuli which triggered a certain response, the cells that were 100 miles away activated in their electrical activity. 
    • The cells still have the same ‘antennas’ as the cells in your body, and the ‘broadcast’ is not coming from the host body but from the soul/spirit, thus they are still receiving that signal.

The Relationship Between One’s Consciousness & Disease In The Body

“The field is the sole governing agent of matter” - Albert Einstein. 

It is not our genes that trigger or even predispose us to have certain diseases (e.g. cancer), but it is our energy field (our consciousness) and the environment that that field creates around us that leads to the disease.  

An MEG (Magnetic Encephalogram) machine allows scientists and doctors to map brain activity from outside your body, by recording the magnetic fields produced by the electrical currents in your brain (your consciousness). 

  • Since your consciousness generates the electromagnetic field, which in turn is the governing agent of matter, it is your thoughts that condition the material reality that you are experiencing. 

It is fundamental to understand that we (our mind & our spirit) are the creators of absolutely everything that becomes manifest in our lives, be it good or bad, be it health or disease.

The Conscious & Unconscious Mind

The conscious mind is the one that engages in creation & novelty, in broadening and expanding our boundaries. 
The unconscious mind is the one that engages in habitual action, the auto-pilot that allows for base-line functioning & survival. 
Studies indicate that for the average person, 95% of the day is spent engaging the world through the unconscious mind (habitual actions & conditioned thinking). 
  • For this reason it is that even though we might have good ideas while engaging in conscious thinking, they don’t end up translating to reality. 
The unconscious mind starts to be developed during the last trimester of pregnancy, even before one is born, and it is mostly (not entirely) developed during the first 7 years of life. 
  • An infant is constantly ‘downloading’ or imprinting the behaviors and thought patterns of the surrounding environment. 
  • Then it gently starts to move deeper into conscious creation.
The problem with unconscious thinking is that, on average, the thought patterns that govern that area of the mind tend to be disempowering, self-sabotaging and limiting. And 95% of your time & energy is greatly conditioned by those thought patterns!

Genetics & Epigenetics and Their Relationship With Our Health

Epigenetics is the study of changes in organisms caused by modification of gene expression rather than alteration of the genetic code itself.

Our genes don’t trigger or cause disease, it is our reality & environment which triggers the disease. 

Genes are merely a blueprint for the proteins that make up our tissues. But blueprints cannot be turned on and off, blueprints can only be read. And what reads the blueprint? The mind! Our state of consciousness alters the readout (expression) of our genetics.

A 2016 peer-reviewed study in the Nature Medicine Journal showed that 90% of cancers are environment and lifestyle related and not linked to genetics. 

The Importance of Preconception Practices

Ancient cultures demanded that before approaching the reproduction of offspring (sometimes even before marriage), the two partners cleared their consciousness & bodies of the negative characters acquired during this lifetime. 
  • The point is to make sure that the seeds (that will eventually develop into a human being that will live for many centuries) is the purest and cleanest it can possibly be. 
  • To make the blueprint for that human being the cleanest and purest to allow for the best possible epigenetic readout and so that our own samskaras (impressions caused by our past actions) don’t pass down to him/her.

How To Override The Subconscious Mind

There are three ways:
  1. Bring the mind to less excited states of consciousness, below the subconscious level, and allow for your body to process, assimilate and let go of the thought patterns that are no longer of use to you. This can surely be attained by means of meditation, and possibly by means of hypnosis or self-hypnosis. 
    • You can find a Vedic Meditation teacher near you HERE
  1. Practicing the repetition of new behaviors and/or thoughts
    • The subconscious is all about habits, and habits are only established when there has been a long-lasting repetition of a certain behavior or thought. 
    • Do or say something over and over, every day, for a long-lasting period of time, and that will surely become a part of your reality for life. 
  1. Energy psychology.
    • This is a new frontier of psychology that engages “super-learning”. 

Resources

Bruce's Website HERE

Bruce's Instagram HERE


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Health Benefit of Having a Pet Dog (and kissing it) – Microbial Diversity

House dog licking a baby's face
Not only are your* reproductive organs becoming sterile, but your whole physiology as well.
You* are becoming a hyper-sensitive organism that lacks basic resiliency to the ever-changing and developing dynamics of life, which include bacteria, viruses, pathogens, and fungi.
You eat, work, sleep, defecate, and perhaps even exercise in these sterile cubicles, while artificial blue light (screens & lights) aggravates your hormones and mental state.
The only things your bare-feet touch are socks + rubber shoes, chemical floor cleaners and carpets, toxic tap water on your shower tiles cleaned with chlorine or bleach, and your dioxin rich 100% (non-organic) cotton bed sheets.

*By You/Your I exaggeratedly refer to the average of today’s collective. While this is an extreme end of the spectrum, sadly it is the truth for too many people, particularly those living in concrete jungle over-sanitised cities. 

Our microbiome, which makes up most of the human physiology and performs all the vital biological functions, is frailer than ever before.
There are a bunch of ways to enhance microbial diversity and performance, but one way is getting a pet dog!
  • A dog goes outside, gets dirty, and licks everyone.
  • They dump the dirt everywhere in the house.
  • The kids lick the dog.
  • The kid slobbers all over the parents and siblings.
This is a terrific way to get the microbes from outside into you.
Studies overseen by Dr. Brett Finlay were able to identify which families had a dog in the house by detecting (dog) microbes in the children’s feces.
While the contrary may occur (pets bring in infections), we need to drop the “good/bad” microbe/bacteria mentality and enhance our microbial diversity and resilience.
Golden Retriever Dog

How do you enhance the health of your microbiome? Comment 👇


How to Be Vital & Healthy In The Second Half of Your Life | Dr John Douillard #074

Vital Veda Podcast Banner: Dr. John Douillard
The lifespan for today’s era according to Ayurveda should be around 120 years old.
This doesn’t mean living into old age feeling frail and in a state of cognitive decline, it means feeling vital and able to share your wisdom and joy with full cognitive function for all to enjoy.
At 65, Dr. John Douillard is an exemplar of what it means to be healthy in the second half of life.
Dr. John is a globally recognised leader in the field of natural health, Ayurveda and sports medicine and practices what he preaches.
He has personally been a significant inspiration to me (Dylan) and has taught me a lot in my years, along with thousands of other practitioners of Ayurveda.
Dr. John’s specialty is integrating ancient Ayurvedic wisdom with modern science, which he shares generously through Lifespa.com - the leading Ayurvedic health and wellness resource on the web.

About our guest: Dr. John Douillard

Dr. John Douillard, DC, CAP is a globally recognized leader in the fields of natural health, Ayurveda, and sports medicine. He is the creator of LifeSpa.com, the leading Ayurvedic health and wellness resource on the web with over 9 million views on YouTube and over 130 thousand newsletter subscribers. LifeSpa.com is evolving the way Ayurveda is understood around the world, with thousands of articles and videos joining ancient wisdom with modern science.

Dr. John is the former Director of Player Development for the New Jersey Nets NBA team, author of 7 health books including his newest Amazon bestseller Eat Wheat, a repeat guest on the Dr. Oz show, and newly released Yoga Journal video course Ayurveda 201 on Ayurvedic Psychology. 

He directs LifeSpa Ayurvedic Clinic, the 2013 Holistic Wellness Center of the Year in Boulder, CO.

Dr. John Douillard

In this Episode we Discuss:

Dr. John’s Journey of Adopting Ayurveda in the Early Days

Studying with the Raju Vaidyas
His own personal journey as a practitioner & how his relationship with Ayurveda evolved to what it is today.

Blending Ancient Wisdom With Modern Science

The fine balance between surrendering to a higher intelligence that appears to be less tangible and more unknown, while striving to intelligibly cognize the How’s and Why’s behind the ancient principles of Ayurveda. 

The Promise of The Second Half of One’s Life

“The Wisdom Years” or the Vata stage of life. It’s a time to apply the wisdom attained during one’s lifetime. 
Approaching life with a more mature and self-aware perspective. Knowing what our purpose is, what serves that purpose and what doesn’t; and acting accordingly. 
Having more time to be fully immersed and devoted to one’s own sadhana, dinacharya and ritucharya.

The True Purpose of Ayurveda

Allowing not only for the physiology to be in optimum condition, but to also achieve a still & fulfilled state of mind that empowers one to engage with life wholeheartedly.
Aligning one’s actions not only with mother nature, but with the essential nature of the Self (atma), so that the inner light that each of us hold comes to the surface for all to enjoy and thrive upon.

Ancient Techniques That Refine Our Capacity to Live Life to The Fullest

Using pranayama, mantra, asana, meditation, nasya and other techniques to cleanse & purify the mind of the different samskaras or impressions that have been imprinted on us during our life, especially our childhood.

The Often Overlooked Benefits of Nasya Therapy & Panchakarma

The Nasya technique was not only intended to heal the sinuses on a physiological level, but rather to cleanse the mind and heal it on a higher vibrational and spiritual level.  
Panchakarma cleanses the body of gross impurities and samskaras, so that it can have more clarity on the subtlest levels of perception - allowing for the letting go of patterns of deep-rooted emotional behaviour.

The Science Behind Pranayama

The relationship between oxygen assimilation and carbon dioxide levels. 
Why it is essential for us to practice intermittent hypoxia. 
To learn more about the science of breath & its therapeutic applications, listen to "Just Breath: Science of Breathing for Optimal Health | The Breathing Diabetic (Nick Heath) #072"
Recommended breathwork techniques:
  • Kumbhaka
  • Pratiloma (a.k.a. Inspiratory Muscle Training). 

Seasonally Drinking Cow's Milk

In Spring cows are having their calves, so during the spring & summer their milk should be for them. 
During the fall & winter there is a window for the dairy farmer to step in and take some of that milk to drink, make ghee, etc. 

Food Intolerances & The "Gluten Free" Concept

It is not advised to stop eating gluten. 
The hard-to-digest foods (wheat, dairy, nuts, seeds, grains, legumes, nightshades, etc.) are irritants to the intestinal lining, and one of their many benefits is that they significantly stimulate gut immunity, which in turn represents 70% of your immune response. 
If intolerant to some type of food, there’s work to be done so that you can overcome the intolerance and allow your body to properly digest said food. 
  • To stop eating certain foods is never the solution; the underlying imbalance that prevents you from eating them is still going to be there. 
  • To read more about how the Ayurvedic view on food intolerances & how to overcome them click HERE

Resources

Dr. John's Website HERE

Dr. John’s Instagram (@lifespa) HERE 


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Building Your Child’s Wellbeing

By Amelia Donnelly
Illustration of Durga Devi
Protecting the emotional safety and wellbeing of children is a fundamental concern of every parent. 
Currently, we are experiencing challenges in different ways: lockdowns, school closure, remote learning, rising mental health issues and uncertainty to name the most obvious. Navigating situations like extended lockdown can trigger a range of responses and reactions in children and prompt parents to ask questions about how to support the mental health of their children. Now, more than ever, do we need to engage in conversations that uphold and highlight solutions and strategies so we can transition as a community with greater ease, flow and confidence in the ‘how’ and ‘why’ of fostering resilient kids.  

How can parents support their children during these difficult transitions?

It is vital that parents and educators have language and tools to help not only support their own wellbeing, but nurture their child’s, too. With Google and the internet providing a plethora of information and resources to go to, parents can sometimes feel overwhelmed about where to turn and what information or guidance to follow. 
As a Vedic meditator, primary school teacher of twelve years and an author, I approach wellbeing inspired by Ayurvedic wisdom and knowledge: that what you focus your attention on, grows. 
To delve deeper into this knowledge, if ‘like increases like’, then how can we incorporate this wisdom into how we foster resilience and wellbeing in children? 
The solution? It’s quite simple: let’s bring our attention and awareness back to the present moment and anchor our daily routines in habits that nurture and nourish mind, body and soul. 
How does this connect to the ‘why?’ 
Taking the principle of ‘like increases like’, parents can begin daily conversations around: what does love look like? Feel like? Sound like? What does kindness look like? Feel like and sound like? What does respect look like? Feel like and sound like? Children are naturally intuitive and make connections between everything they see, say and do. 
Establishing values that are consistent with this Ayurvedic principle, will ensure that parents are living and role modelling values and virtues aligned to ‘increasing’ more of the same.
Parents with children outdoors
If we want to create more love, let’s focus our attention, language, emotions and thoughts on enlivening love within ourselves, our relationships and then with children.
Conscious parenting by no means ignores or devalues challenge or adversity; rather it accepts the present moment in all its fullness, and seeks to provide expression and meaning to the depth and beauty of human emotion and experience. This approach defines the ‘why’ – the pinnacle of establishing resilience is the ability to accept and acknowledge the present moment; to surrender to the Now and to gravitate towards fostering deeper connection to truth, being and purpose. 
Resilience is an ‘inside’ job. It’s how we feel. It’s how we think. It’s how we behave. It’s the choices we repeatedly make; it’s the way we communicate to each other, and it’s the values and beliefs we foster with children. 
If love is the most robust emotion, then enlivening this with children is paramount to maintaining safe, positive relationships. Children naturally absorb their parents’ approach to life; as such, they are constantly mirroring with the behavior of their parents and learning first hand by what is said and done. When stress and change take place, parents need to come back to ‘what you focus your attention on, grows.’

Establishing and maintaining daily routines for children include 3 M’s: movement, mood and meditation. 

Movement is vital for encouraging children to get outside, learn new skills, to engage in sports and activities. Fresh air, connecting to nature, exploring new places are all incredible ways to increase wellbeing.
Maintaining mood involves daily routines that work in accordance with nature’s rhythms: getting to sleep at the same time and up every morning, eating healthy, nourishing meals and being creative. Learning to express emotions in a meaningful way; singing, dancing, learning an instrument, cooking, writing, reading all help enliven and move emotions through the body.
Meditation is the corner stone of how I maintain my wellbeing and I have also shared mindfulness practices with my students. Children as young as 5, are able to learn how to breathe deep into their belly and learn how to notice the change in breathing as a response to changes in physical reactions and perceived stress. From breath awareness, mantras, chanting, belly breathing and visualisations, there are so many wonderful techniques and teachers out there who help empower children to learn how to meditate. 
Mom and daughter meditating together

The Golden Thread

In 2018, I wrote a picture story book called, The Golden Thread. Inspired by Vedic wisdom that ‘we are all one’, the golden thread is a thread of pure love that connects anyone to someone they miss or are separated from. The book is based on my own personal experience of losing my brother to a hit and run incident when I was 17.
If children are at home separated from their school, teacher and friends, they can use the golden thread as a framework to help visualise them and imagine thread of love connecting them together.
Again, this approach includes ‘like increases like’ and ‘what you focus your attention on, grows’. Ayurvedic knowledge is activated through action, intent and being; now is the time for parents to remember their nature and inspire a cascade of love in their daily routine, interaction and living.
The Golden Thread book by Amelia Donnelly

www.ameliadonnelly.com

Author of: The Golden Thread available at: www.dymocks.com.au

Content creator of: Zen Zoo Mindfulness Range available Australia wide at www.kmart.com.au