Water: The Basis Of Life, Therapeutic Bathing, Cold Water Immersion & Extreme Wellness | Professor Marc Cohen {Podcast #14}

Water: One of the Foundational Elements of the Universe and The Basis of All Life

What ways can we utilise it to optimise our individual health and the collective wellness of humans on earth and deal with the world water crisis.

About Professor Marc Cohen

Professor Marc Cohen is one of Australia’s pioneers of integrative and holistic medicine and has made significant impacts on education, research, clinical practice and policy. He is a registered medical practitioner with degrees in western medicine, physiology and psychological medicine along with PhDs in Chinese medicine and biomedical engineering.

Dr. Marc with his beloved Tulsi plants

In 2002 he became Australia’s first Professor of Complementary Medicine and Head of the Department of Complementary Medicine at RMIT University, which was by far the largest such department in the country with around 100 staff and 1000 students. He currently leads wellness research within the School of Health and Biomedical Sciences at RMIT University and serves as Program Leader for postgraduate wellness programs along with teaching undergraduate courses on Medical Diagnosis and Medical Examination.

He is a Board Member of the Global Wellness Summit, Past-President (from 2000-2007) of the Australasian Integrative Medicine Association (AIMA), a member of the RACGP-AIMA Joint Working party and sits on the Editorial Board of five international journals. Prof Cohen has previously held positions as Senior Research Fellow in the Centre for Medical and Health Sciences Education at Monash University, Expert Advisor to the TGA Complementary Medicine Evaluation Committee, Member of the NHMRC Grant Review panel on Primary Healthcare, Member of the Scientific Advisory Committee for the National Institute of Complementary Medicine and multiple ministerial appointments on various Registration and Accreditation Panels. He previously held the position as Director of the Centre for Complementary Medicine at the Monash Institute for Health Services Research.

As a medical practitioner and researcher Prof Cohen has pioneered the introduction of complementary, holistic and integrative medicine into mainstream settings. He has been involved in two landmark surveys of Australian General Practitioners and their attitudes towards, and use of, complementary medicines, which were instrumental in the development of the AMA policy on complementary medicine and the establishment of the RACGP-AIMA Joint Working Party on Integrative Medicine. He has also been involved in establishing acupuncture as a form of standard care in emergency department settings and developing hospital policy on practitioner accreditation as well as co-authoring many high level reports including a report for the World Health Organisation on quality assurance in CM education, a report for the National Asthma Council on CM in Asthma, and a report for the Victorian Department of Human Services on the risks and regulatory requirements of naturopathy and western herbal medicine, which was used to inform policy development for the regulation of natural medicine practitioners.

Prof Cohen has published more than 90 peer–reviewed articles, authored more than 20 book chapters and edited 8 books on holistic health as well as co-authoring the landmark text; “Herbs and Natural Supplements an Evidenced Based Guide”, with the first two editions being short-listed for an Australian Publishing Award in the scholarly reference section. He is also co-editor with Oxford University’s Prof Gerry Bodeker of the landmark text ‘Understanding the Global Spa Industry’ which is the first academic book documenting the global spa and wellness industry. He writes a regular monthly column for Prevention Magazine and is regularly requested to examine PhD thesis from many local and international universities and peer-review articles for numerous international scientific journals.

Prof Cohen has extensive experience in running clinical trials and other multidisciplinary projects. He has been involved in running more than 10 industry-funded randomized controlled trials as well as being CIA on two NHMRC funded trials on the use of yoga for geriatric insomnia and the use of acupuncture for analgesia in Emergency Departments. Prof Cohen is currently involved in research into various aspects of holistic health including the use of organic foods in reducing pesticide exposure, the use of yoga and meditation for insomnia and stress, and the use of various therapies and lifestyle interventions for detoxification from environmental chemicals.

Prof Cohen is one of the most active people in Australia when it comes to organising conferences on holistic and integrative medicine. He has organised more than 10 International Holistic Health Conferences and in 2003 he chaired the Organising Committee for the First World Congress on Chinese Medicine. He also organised the Complementary Medicine Symposium at the XIIIth World Congress on Clinical Pharmacology and Therapeutics as well as organising the RMIT School of Health Sciences Research Conferences from 2005-2007. He sat on the Scientific Committees for the Third International Conference on Complementary Medicine Research and National Prescribing Service Scientific Conference and currently sits on the Board of the Global Wellness Summit. In this last role he has been involved in commissioning and conducting landmark econometric research into the global wellness economy and been instrumental in the development and implementation of the free online evidence based portal wellnessevidence.com

As well as organising conferences, Prof Cohen is a sought after presenter and has been an invited speaker at more than 100 conferences including more than 40 international and 40 national conferences in Australia, Germany, the United Kingdom, India, Indonesia, Turkey, Switzerland, China, Japan, Taiwan, Thailand, Singapore, The Philippines, New Zealand, The United States and Hong Kong. Prof Cohen’s impact on the field is recognised by the media and he has received four consecutive RMIT Media Star Awards as well as the inaugural award for leadership and collaboration from the National Institute of Complementary Medicine.


In this Episode we Discuss:

An overview of water on earth:

  • Just a ping pong ball (water) in a basketball (earth).

but 97.5% of the water is ocean (saline) water.

  • Fresh Water: size of a marble in the basketball.

But most the fresh water is in the ground or in icecaps.

  • Liquid fresh water: the size of a small mustard seed in a basketball. - in lakes, streams, rivers and the water in every microorganism in earth. 

We are 99% water including the molecules in our body.

Water as the Matrix of Life and the Most Important Thing for Life on Earth

The Distribution of Water in the World

  • 1 in 7 people on earth does not have clean drinking water - a survival issue.
  • 4.2 million people (mainly children) die every year from water born illness.
  • 1 in 3 people on earth (2.4 billion people) do not have access the clean water to bathe.

The Dignity, Comfort and Spirituality of Water

Feeling good, not stinking, feeling wealthy and abundant when having access to clean water and bathing.

WELLthy - water is part of what we desire.

Bathe The World

Marc and his business partner and friend Charle Davidson’s initiative: everyone on earth deserves one 10L bucket of water a day to drink and clean with.

We have the technology and resources to provide clean bathing water to everyone on earth but we are more focused on doing thing like going to Mars.

World Bathing Day - June 22.

Global Bathe the World Event

  • June 22, 2022.
  • Marc and Charles’s initiative to get one person from every nation of the world to bathe in the biggest natural hot spring on earth.
  • This happens to be in the center of Australia.

Alternating Between Hot and Cold Bathing as Therapy.

Using the thermal properties of water to change your own physiology and mental state.

Marc as personal the scientist of Wim Hoff (known as The Ice Man).

The Cold Water Hokey Pokey: At Home Therapeutic Bathing Technique 

Benefits of Cold Showers/Bathing:

  • Vascular workout - Vassal dilating your blood vessels (we have about 100,000km of blood vessels in our body which are not normally under our voluntary control). Open blood vessels with hot water and close with cold water.
  • Taking control over your breath = mastery over your body. Psychology. Remaining comfortable in an uncomfortable situation. But for those who cannot be comfortable, it is not good.
  • Immune system boost - High adrenaline response suppresses the immune system. Psycho-neuro-immunology: the link between our mind, nervous system, immune system and our brain.
  • Invigorating 
  • Communicates with and up-regulates mitochondria.
  • Induces brown fat production (around big blood vessels, heart and lungs) fat is brown because it is so dense with mitochondria. These mitochondria produce thermal heat (thermogenesis) rather than ATP. They encourage white-fat metabolism.
  • Turns up metabolism and activates the thyroid gland.
  • Cold suppresses the mTOR pathway, a molecular signaling pathway that is responsible for either growth or repair, depending on whether it is stimulated or inhibited. To up-regulate maintenance and repair, boost longevity, and reduce your risk for cancer, you need to suppress the mTOR pathway, and the most efficient way to do this is to limit your protein intake.
  • Helps sleep.
  • Cells become more efficient - Hypoxia forces your body to clean up the house and become more efficient in how they handle oxygen. When the amount of oxygen reaching the tissues is deficient, the cells freak out, their life is on the line. So any free oxygen radicals get mopped up, any proteins that have malformed get auto-phaged, any cells that are pre-cancerous, aging, not working well, abhorrent get apoptosed (cell death). 
  • Promotes cell stem circulation to regenerate tissues - since stem cells live in hypoxic environments and 

The Risks of Cold Shock

Panic in cold water = sympathetic overload = arterial fibrillation = heart attack. This is rare and hardly seen in voluntary cold exposure (more seen when a "man goes over deck").

The Importance of Easing Gradually and Gently into Cold Water Immersion and How to Do It

  • You want to be comfortable and not shocking.
  • Do so your body is at the point just before shivering. You should not shiver.
  • You should feel pleasant. Do not push yourself.
  • Ideal temperature.

Anything below 12-14 degrees celsius is considered really cold water immersion.

How Cold Showers Trained James Bond to Remain Cool and Calm in Hectic Situations

How Water Came to Earth

How the hottest water in the solar system met the coldest water in the solar system - the topic of Marcs third children’s book.

72 Scientific Anomalies of Water

The Fourth Phase of Water: The gel phase substance beyond solid, liquid and vapour.

  • H3O2.
  • Exclusion Zone (EZ) water - it is pure water that excludes solutes like salt to create an electrical potential difference and forms this gel phase / structured water.
  • This is millions of atoms thick (a lot more than we predicted).
  • Light increases the size of the exclusion zone - infrared radiation adds energy to water, purifies it and structures it.
  • Happens at 4 degrees. This is why the arctic ice is less salty than the ocean.

Extreme Wellness Practices

Explore both edges of your comfort zone, but don't exceed it, through basic physiological processes to find your homeostatic point of balance and thus experience extreme comfort.

e.g. Hot and cold showers, Feasting and fasting, hyperventilation and hypoventilation.

Professor Marcs 5 Factors for Life:

  1. Temperature
  2. Glucose
  3. Water
  4. Carbon Dioxide
  5. Oxygen

Breathing Exercises (Pranayama)

The Importance of Coupling Hypoventilation with Hyperventilation when doing breathing exercises or the Wim Hoff method.

Alkalising the body and reducing lactic acid in the body (what causes muscles to burn) with breath.

Marcs 5 Phases of Breathing for Health

Pranayama to increase the number and sensitivity of endorphin receptors - more blissful comfort and more euphoria.

Our Sensitivity to Light Spectrums

Our Cells Emit Light - Bio-photons get emitted with cellular metabolism.

Hot Water as a Therapeutic Technique

  • Lithian, sulphur, iron, magnesium springs.
  • Immersion in water is more relaxing than immersing in air.
  • Compresses your limbs and pulls blood to your core.
  • Bathing increases the efficiency of heart pumping, while your heart is more relaxed and not creating extra waste products (e.g. producing of carbon dioxide and muscle breakdown products).
  • Detox and relaxation at the same time - Flushing lymphatics and blood.
  • Improves sleep - due to cardiovascular workout, metabolic effects and mineral effects that improve sleep.
  • Helps with pain and inflammation.

The Importance of Magnesium and Why Most People are Deficient In It

Transdermally absorbing magnesium as an effective way to get magnesium - Epson salt bath or float tanks.

Thermohaline Circulation: Interactions occurring at the Deep Depths of the Ocean which Provides us with Oxygen

  • When solutes get excluded from Exclusion Zone Water because they are so heavy and mineral dense it drops down to the bottom of oceans. You get dense salty waterfalls occurring under arctic ocean surfaces that are 500,000 times Niagra falls.
  • It can take one to two thousand years to circulate around the bottom of the earths oceans.
  • This helps to stabilise the whole global temperature.
  • That cold oxygenated salty water hits the hot springs at the bottom of the ocean.
  • You get chemistry which started life on earth and semi-organic molecules form.
  • They travel up till they hit the continental shelf and rise up to form fertiliser for phytoplankton.
  • That phytoplankton photosynthesises and supplies us with oxygen today.
  • The oxygen we breath is because of the interaction that occurred at the depths of the ocean.

What Was the Turning Point for Marc to Go Deeper into Cold Immersion

When Marc got 320 Litres of 8-degree ice water poured on his head in 5 seconds.

This huge adrenaline response made his cells vibrate and enhanced his sensory experiences for the next 2-3 hours.

Our Drinking Water

  • Chlorine as a powerful poison.
  • Moving water, not stagnant, restructures water,
  • Mount Donna Buang, Victoria - 1.5 hours from Melbourne as a source of spring water.
  • Boiling water to reduce chlorine and other toxins.

Conscious Relationship with Water

  • Consciously drinking water to change the structure of water you drink and the water in you.
  • Drinking water in gratitude.
  • Even holding water changes the structure of water, which can be seen through looking at water drops with your eye, no need for a microscope.

Tulsi (Holy Basil / Ocimum Sanctum)

  • Purifies water - Wells in India are contaminated with fluoride. Tulsi absorbs heavy metals and toxic elements from the water.
  • Purifies air - when the Taj Mahal planted thousands of Tulsi plants around the Taj Mahal when it was getting bombarded with polluted air.
  • Cognitive awareness.
  • Blood sugar, diabetes, metabolic syndrome.
  • Relaxation without depression of alcohol.
  • Mouth wash, anti-bacterial, disinfectant.
  • Travel companion - boosts the immune system.
  • Every hotel, room, aeroplane you can get sugar and caffeine drinks.
  • Replace sugar, alcohol, caffeine drinks with tulsi and you start to transform consciousness globally.
  • You can consume it all year around.
  • Every part of the plant is medicinal.
  • Even the soil is healthy - the bacteria around the roots and fungi that grow are medicinal.

Read more about Tulsi: The Queen Of Herbs, here

Building Biology: The Health of Our Homes

Water damaged buildings and moulds and the relationship with toxic illnesses.

Balancing Scientific Validation with Intuitive Feeling and Traditional Wisdom

Marcs Ventures in Life.


Resources

The Fourth Phase of Water: Dr. Gerald Pollack at TEDxGuelphU

Earth From Space - Thermohaline Circulation

Peninsula Hot Springs near Melbourne: Best Hot Springs in the World for three years in a row. They are implementing extreme wellness.

Maruia Hot Springs - Marc's hot spring business in New Zealand which holds Extreme Wellness retreats.

The World In a Drop by a Prof. Dr. Ing. Bernd-Helmut Kroeplin from Stuttgart University.

Herbs and Natural Supplements an Evidenced Based Guide: Now in the fourth edition. 1600 pages. The chapter on Tulsi is 10,000 words and contains around 300 references. 


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Travel Healthy! Reduce Aeroplane Stress

Aeroplane travel will surreptitiously “suck the life out of you.” It sucks all the moisture out of your body.
With the humidity level in the cabins of most commercial aeroplanes at just 10-20%, and some even as low as 1%!(1), this makes aeroplanes drier than the Sahara Desert! which sits at about 25% humidity.

Take a good look at yourself in the mirror after travelling, especially if you travel a lot. If you are slightly in tune with your body, you will probably realise how much aeroplane travel accelerates your ageing process.

You may be surprised to learn the many risks associated with air travel.

For example, one study shows how bacteria can stay alive and continue to be infectious for more than a week on the armrests, seat pockets, seats and bathroom doors of commercial aircrafts. The dry air is said to contribute to their extra-long life on aeroplanes. (2)

That’s not to mention the health risks associated with jet lag, dehydration, swelling and fatigue.

Altitude Shock = Dehydration & Dryness

Ever wonder why it is so easy to fall asleep in a plane? It is likely because the oxygen has been literally sucked out of your brain as the cabin is being pressurised.

When people flock to mountain towns to hike, ski or for leisure, it is very common for them to get altitude sickness. Even fit athletes who train at altitude can tell the difference when they climb to 3,000 meters. In a plane, this altitude change happens in just a couple of minutes!

Dehydration and body dryness is the most instant result of altitude shock.

If you are flying a lot and your body is repeatedly put through such drastic altitude changes, the effects become chronic. Chronic sub-clinical dehydration will first dry out the outer skin and then dry out the skin associated lymph beneath the skin. When this dries out, lymphatic flow is hampered, compromising its function of draining toxins and circulating white blood cells around the body for immunity.

The good news is, I’ve compiled some effective strategies to buffer these risks. Incorporating just a few simple tips to your air travel routine will help lessen the impact of flying and help you feel more vibrant during and after your trips.

Air Travel Survival Tools

Pre-Hydrate

For 1-2 days before you fly, make every effort to drink plenty of warm-hot water. Approximately 2-3L depending on your body weight. Fresh coconut water is also recommended if in season and local.

On the day of your flight, sip hot water every 10-15 minutes to help further hydrate and support the lymphatic system.

Lubricate

Perform Ayurvedic Self-Abhyanga (Massage) before and after trips or treat yourself to an Abhyanga if available, especially upon arrival.

This will not only counter the dryness but effectively move the lymph and circulate blood. Continue to topically apply oil as a moisturiser on the flight.
Pack a little Ghee as lip balm, or use the massage oil.

Shilajit

Used by Himalayan mountain climbers to gain energy for climbing at heights above 6,000 meters and to help oxygenate at high altitudes. The active ingredient of this ancient herb, Fulvic acid, has now been found by scientists to support oxygen and energy transport. Consider taking this herb around travel days.*

* It is best to take herbs in a therapeutic combination rather than by itself. If taking by itself, have 1 day break every 7 days. Consult an Ayurvedic practitioner for a proper formulation and prescription. 

Pitta body types take caution as Shiljait is very heating and may aggravate Pitta.

Recycled Air

The Journal of Environmental Health Research reported that air travel increases the risk of catching a cold by 100 times because of the recycled air.

While exposure is unavoidable, we can increase our immunity and decrease our susceptibility.

Air Travel Survival Tools

Nasya

My most prized aeroplane survival tool.

Nasya is an Ayurvedic technique which involves lubricating the nasal passages (responsible for immunity).

Oil to use:  Vital Veda/Raju Nasika herbalised oil formula is superior. Inferior but still effective is Anu Tailia or cold pressed sesame oil.

Method: Tilt the head back and drop 1-3 drops in each nostril every hour so. The aim is to sniff it through the entire nasal passages, and even further up to your brain.
Also pop a couple of drops in your ears to deal with cabin pressure.

Learn about Nasya more here

Immune Boosting Rasayana (Elixir)

Ananda Siddhi Yog
Highly nourishing to the body and boosts immunity, strengthens and repairs all the seven layers of the dhatus (tissues) and gives all the refined nourishment you need for rapid healing. Very good for chronic coughs (strengthens the lungs) and restores physical vitality.
This is superior to Chywanprash.
Take 1 tsp 1-2x/day. Contact Vital Veda to order.

Chywanprash
This trusted and popular Ayurvedic formula supports immunity. This is a classic remedy for supporting frequent travellers and mitigating your risk of catching a cold during a flight.
*Please buy a quality product from a trustworthy source such as Vital Veda or Maharishi Ayurveda.

Jet Lag

Imagine air-lifting a dolphin from the Tasman Sea off the coast of Sydney, Australia to the Indian Ocean by Singapore in just 8 hours. Then, after a quick layover, air-lift that same dolphin to the harbour in Hong Kong in 4 hours.

Would you expect that dolphin to ever re-establish normal migration patterns? If so, how long do you think it might take?

For humans too, this disruption of the body’s normal biological rhythms is very real.

Jet lag can cause fatigue and lead to cognitive decline, sleep issues, and even psychotic or mood disorders.

Air Travel Survival Tools

Daily Ayurvedic Massage

Since your skin has more nerve endings than any other organ, applying herbalised oil will pacify the nervous system. Every square centimetre of the body’s skin is innervated by sensory neurons. These neurones are much happier when fed with herbalised oil, rather than left dehydrated to become irritated and over-stimulated. Learn to do self-massage.

Watch the Sunrise & Sunset

Watch the sunrise and sunset to re-connect with the local circadian cycles. Natures rhythms will enter through the retina of your eyes to regulate hormones like melatonin.
Even if it means pulling yourself out of bed, it’s worth it, and beautiful.

Ashwagandha

Considered by many to be one of the most potent adaptogens, this herb supports the body’s ability to adapt to stress like that incurred by jet lag and prevent you from absorbing the crippling impact.

It is best to take herbs in a therapeutic combination rather then by it self. If taking by itself, have 1 day break every 7 days. Consult a quality Ayurvedic practitioner. I recommend the product Stresscom as a good source of ashwagandha.

Blood Clots

20 million travellers will develop blood clots, or deep vein thrombosis (DVT) a year.(3)
The risk factors seem to be a combination of sitting still for hours in a pressurised cabin, lymph congestion and dehydration.

Air Travel Survival Tools

Get Up and Move Regularly During Long Flights

  • Walk up and down the aisles more
  • Yoga Asanas - find a more spacious place to do stretches - I usually go near the bathroom, back or front of a section, near the staff stations, exit rows, rows with more leg room, empty business class areas, or my favourite, the muslim praying area.
  • Stretch your neck, rotate ankles, wrists, as much as you can while sitting.

Herbal Support

If DVT is an issue for you, it is important to consult a practitioner to tackle this problem. More complex herbs and treatment are required to dilate the channels.

Rest As Mentioned Above

Hearing Loss

Airline cabins range from 75 decibels in the front of the plane to 85 to 100 in the back. A loud nightclub, for example, roars at about 100 decibels. The Institute for Occupational Safety and Health limits safe noise levels to 88 decibels for four hours. This suggests that there is potential risk of permanent hearing damage during frequent flights that last longer than four hours.

Air Travel Survival Tools

Noise Reduction Headphones

If you are a frequent traveller, consider a set of noise reduction headphones, which reduce noise by about 40 decibels.

Nasya in the Ears

Pop a couple of Nasya oil drops in your ears before flying. Hold the head on each side for about a minute for the oil to sink down deep down into the eardrum.

Constipation

Very common due to jet lag, altitude shock and dehydration.

Swelling

Mainly caused by congested lymph.
Causative factors of lymph congestion are almost all of the idea discussed above, particularly:

  • Constipation dries out the lymph concentration on the gut wall.
  • Altitude shock affects cellular pressure, which is responsible for lymph movement.
  • Sitting still for hours may congest the lymph as their is no movement to pump the lymph and regulate the circulatory system.
  • Dehydration directly affects lymph flow.
  • Jet lag creates stress on the body, which is a major cause of lymph congestion.

Air Travel Survival Tools

Vital Veda / Raju Shodana Vati

Detoxification agent & whole-body cleansing purifier. 3-dosha blanching. Accordingly these herbal pills prepared by the Raju family will support regular bowel motions.

Triphala

Tripahla is a natural bowel toner that supports regular bowel movements. It can be used for short periods of time around travels without dependency. available at Vital Veda.

*Not necessary if you are taking “Shodana Vati.”

Sip Hot Water Frequently

Ensure you have a thermos with you to keep refilling. You’ll make best friends with the flight attendant and perhaps contribute to the revolution of drink hot water rather than cold.

Vata Tea

Since the Vata dosha gets mostly thrown out during travel, a Vata tea can assist in balancing. My favourite Vata tea is from Moksha Ayurveda.

Meditate More

Due to the harsh environment of an aeroplane, meditate as much as you like! It will buffer against jet lag, provide deep rest, and get you through the flight a lot more joyfully. Vedic Meditation is recommended.

Avoid Caffeine and Alcohol

These only dehydrate you further while in the flight.

Tongue Scraper and Herbal Toothpaste

Don’t forget these in your carry on luggage for long flights to scrape away the ama (toxins).

My on-board travel kit. Also includes a thermos and some Vata tea bags.

Don’t just Arrive Alive, Arrive and Thrive!

References
(1) Robert Haru Fisher, http://www.frommers.com/articles/4606.html
(2) http://wireeagle.auburn.edu/news/1656
(3) “The Lancet,” New Zeland, 2003.
Credits: Dr. John Doulliard, Lifespa.com

Waning The Winter Woes

Become immune to the common cold or flu - Prevent it!

But if it does hit you, do not resist it. Rather, accept it and apply some of the tactics listed in this article to actually make the flu work for you!

What Exactly Is the Flu?

The flu is not a disease that calls for panic or that needs to be “treated”.

The flu is a natural detoxification that the body’s intelligence wisely instigates to “clean the house” (the body). So do not suppress it!

Your body “vents” (clears) toxins 24hrs a day. But sometimes (particularly as the seasons become colder) it gets overwhelmed and opens up all the vents for immediate clearing. This clearing comes in many forms: perspiration, breathing, sweating, rashes, diarrhoea, colds, flus and so on.

So we must facilitate this process of “cleaning the house” by allowing and assisting the toxins to be eliminated. Unfortunately people aren’t facilitating this process enough.

Common Treatment Process of the Flu

  • People are masking the symptoms with pharmaceutical drugs that fool the body into feeling that it doesn’t have any toxins to eliminate.
  • The drugs may also clog or block these “vents” (elimination channels).
  • These toxins then will get trapped deeper into the bodily channels, causing deeper problems down the track.
  • Additionally, drugs and vaccines will further add to the toxins that are trapped in the body and increases the risk and severity of "Dis-Ease" later on. No one currently knows the long term impact of these ‘foreign’ substances that are being injected into the blood streams of many people (vaccinations).

Vent the Body to Prevent Disease

If your body is not able to “vent” toxins coming in (undigested food, environmental pollutants, stressful relationships, stressful work situations etc.) you will experience discomfort.

So in winter, if you or your children get the sniffles or a severe cold, rather then stressing, here are some simple home remedies to keep these “vents” open and working effectively:

Home Remedies for the Cold and Flu

Realise and become aware that your body is “cleaning the house” during this period and the best thing you can do is to support it during the detoxification process.

  • Avoid suppressing the symptoms with a pharmaceutical drug. Yes, you might get some symptomatic short-term relief but the effects of the toxic residues that are left behind will show up down the road and your body’s natural intelligence to function will be weakened. There are other ways to relieve the discomfort as listed below. However, after you have tried natural remedies to relieve the symptoms, if you are unbearingly suffering it is sometimes better to take the pharmaceutical drugs than suffer.
  • Rest - The most important. Avoid the cold wind outside, avoid strenuous work, late nights. Stay warm.
  • Eat lighter - Cut down on your intake of meat and animal products such as cheese and yoghurt. Dinner especially should be light (soups are best).
  • Liquid diet day - any cooked and pureed foods or soups, lassi, fresh fruit juices and herbal teas can help you overcome a virus much more easily. Avoid vegetable juices.
  • Fasting (with your body type in mind) coupled with sipping hot water all day is “the best/chief among those which cure fever.”(1)
  • Sip hot water - Plain hot water is the best to clear all body’s channels and hydrate the body. Plain is best because is works on all the body’s channels, rather then specifically targeting a certain area. Plus, plain hot water is even more hydrating than lemon water! Frequency is what matters, not quantity. Sip every 10-15 minutes. You can also make a tea with turmeric + a little black pepper or cumin + ajwain tea.
  • Avoid therapies such as massage, nasya (oil administered in nose) and exercise.

Plants and Whole-Food Remedies

These can provide instant relief and still support the body and it’s natural defence system to vent.

 

Honey & Kitchen Spice Paste

Cough and cold remedy, increases immunity, fights infections. Recipe Here.

Tulsi tea - English name “Holy Basil.” Also known as the “Queen of Herbs” in Ayurveda. Tulsi is especially effective for lungs and to decongest the respiratory system.

Salt + warm water gargle - Can do all throughout the day, especially if experiencing sore throat. Use 1/2tsp-1tsp of black salt for best effect. Can add a little turmeric to the water for stronger bacteria-fighting help.

Gargle with liquorice tea - Soothe a sore throat and reduce inflammation.

Steam inhalation - Perhaps one of the most effective remedies. Add 2 drops of Vital Veda/Raju Prandhara into a bowl of boiling water, cover head and bowl with towel and inhale steam till steam is finished. Mini Steam inhalation: 1 drop of prandhara in a cup of boiling water, inhale steam until steam is finished, then drink liquid. Can do a few times a day. Order Prandhara from Vital Veda clinic. Alternative to Prandhara: 10-15 drops of eucalyptus oil in a big bowl of boiling water and inhale.

More complex herbs for deeper seated problems. Available from the Vital Veda clinic or a good Ayurvedic practitioner.

Act early

Prevention is a key component in Ayurveda. If you notice the initial stages of a symptom - waking up with a slight sore throat, then gargle with salt water, eat the Honey & Spice Mix or better take some complex herbs.

If you are beginning to feel a bit congested in the sinuses or lungs, incorporate steam inhalation into your morning routine. Jump in early to work WITH the viruses or toxins to ensure their effective elimination.

Act even earlier

Adopt an Ayurvedic diet, lifestyle and perhaps take some herbs to maintain optimum immunity and vitality and hardly ever see the start of a disease or symptom. Especially the cold or flu.

Read my articles in the blog or book in with me for a consultation to acquire a detailed lifestyle and dietary plan to tune yourself into optimum balance and wellness.

 

References:

(1) “Astanga Samgraha (of Vagbhata)” - Chaper 13: Collection of the Best, Agryasangrahaniya Asdhyaya, translated by Author: Prof. K R Srikantha Murthy