Ayurveda Recommends Monsoon Detox – Detoxify the Ayurveda Way
Whereas the rainy season is well -awaited and ever cherished and yet at the same time this humid season brings with itself a number of health dilemmas like stomach infections, skin rashes and allergies, lethargy and malaise, respiratory afflictions and viral fever. Thus, it is better to detox appropriately in the monsoons.
Why detoxification is necessary?
Detoxification is essentially a conscientious cleansing of the body that aids in releasing the accumulated toxins over a period of time. Ayurveda recommends detoxifying and overhauling the body systems so as to counterbalance and reduce the accumulated toxicity from the body. The elimination channels of the body viz. lungs, kidneys, intestines and the skin, work more efficiently to get rid of the wastes.
What Ayurveda suggests
Three basic humors viz. air, fire and phlegm or the tridoshas Vatta, pitta and kapha are believed to be the part and parcel of our basic natural existence. It is believed strongly in Ayurveda therapeutic science that so as to enjoy the fruit of wellbeing, all the three doshas need to be in balanced state inside the human body. It is also understood that an ailment crops up due to the disparity (aggravation or decline) in the normal functioning of the doshas.
The process of timely detoxification of the body is requisite so as to maintain the natural balance of the three doshas.
The Need of Detoxification in Rainy Season
During the rainy season there is a considerable loss of energy levels and also decrease in the digestive powers. This accounts for the feeling of low and frailty and increased incidence of gastric upsets and skin afflictions during this period of the year. Also during the rains, all the three doshas or body humors i.e. the vatta, pitta and kapha (air, fire and phlegm) get distorted, more particularly the air body humor.
This alone reasons for eighty types of ailments like joint pains, body stiffness, malaise, gastric upsets, nervous anxiety et all. Therefore, it becomes rather mandatory to be able to curb and annihilate the aggravation caused by Vatta which would definitely lead to imbalance in the body in due course of time.
Panchkarma procedures for detoxification
This has been long conceptualized in our ancient healing text that the five processes of Panchkarma are highly beneficial as for the aim of complete detoxification of the body. The five various techniques that are incorporated in this thorough cleansing process are Vamana (to induce vomiting), Virechana (to cause purgation), Shirovirechana (Nasal errhines), Asthapana Vasti (Medicine enema) and Anuvasan Vasti (Oil enemas). These five actions or Panchkarmas virtually aid in systematic detoxification of the body by the virtue of assuaging the vitiated doshas and bring back the balance in the body.
What to Avoid
Whereas the body is undergoing natural detoxification, it is also recommended that there is constraint on activities like taking up tough exercise schedules and going out in the sun, as these would enhance the sweat production in your body causing the skin channels to obstruct. Sleeping in the daytime and drinking river water or sattu mixed in water is also prohibited.
Diet Regime for Detoxification
As there is natural aggravation of air in the body systems which needs to be pacified and brought back into balance, specific diet regime would be supportive. The main rationale behind this is to invigorate the distorted and frail gastric fire as well as detoxify the body. For this purpose, having more of sour, salty and oily foods is suggested. Intake of old jaun (barley), wheat, old rice, oats and vegetable soups with a tadka (seasoning) of cumin, pepper and asafoetida in ghee is recommended. . You may take plenty of garlic and ginger in your food preparations. Not only this, some herbs which are natural anti-oxidants like ginger, cinnamon and holy basil may be boiled in morning tea or taken in the form of decoction. These herbs can also be pounded and can be taken mixed with some honey. Honey is another boon during this seasonal cleansing. You may take it daily mixed in a glassful of boiled and self-cooled water or simply have a spoonful as it is.
The everyday diet intake needs to be more of freshly cooked and easily digestible foods that help in decreasing the aggravated air humor and also keep the digestive power up. It is suggested that dry and rough food items tend to aggravate the vatta and need to be generally avoided. Also, during the detoxification practice during rains, it water and liquids intake need to be increased. This would assist in flushing out toxins from the body and also aids to cope up with the excessive sweat produced in this season and to stay clear of dehydration.
Lifestyle Activities help detox
Scrubbing of the skin agreeably after daily bath is recommended during rains to help release embedded toxins via the pores of the skin. Also, this would evade accumulation of infection causing germs and microorganisms.
As rainy season regimen, the ancient classics recommend application of pastes prepared by rubbing sandalwood on mortar would keep your skin soft and supple as well as fragrant. This also helps to keep away bad odour due to increased sweat during the moist climate.
Ayurveda recommends scrubbing of the skin by the use of body massage paste prepared by mixing powders of turmeric and besan in water or raw milk once or twice a week. This would effectively stimulate the skin channels and detoxify the body.
During the rainy season, there is generally increased sweat which tends to block the toxins within the body channels. This could hamper the detoxification process. For this purpose, proper hygiene has to maintained. A regular change of underclothes is a must. It is advisable to wear clean and comfortable cotton clothes. Synthetic clothes are a strict no-no for this humid season particularly while undergoing the process of detoxification.
What Naturopathy suggests
Natural sciences believe in the usage of the five basic elements viz. ether, air, fire, water and earth. Therefore, activities like going in for complete fasting for about three days followed by fasting on seasonal fruits and vegetables along with lots of liquids like lime juice, lemon water, coconut water tends to curb acidic formation inside the body and has a cleansing effect wherein detoxifying the body. Other cleansing processes include undertaking full body scrubbing massage, enemas, mud packs on the abdomen and alternate hot and cold water sitz bath. Green charged water is another wonderful detox remedy.
The bowels need to be cleared thoroughly and any signs and symptoms of acute ailments like headache or loose motions, that might emerge need not to be suppressed.
Yoga Recommendation for Detox
Yoga techniques which include Vasti, Kunjal, Dyoti, Sutra Neti and Jala Neti, Nauli and Trataka are some of the kriyas or techniques that would aid in methodical cleansing and detoxification. Simple asanas or yoga poses like Yogamudra asana, Bhujang asana, Utan padasana, Vajra asana, Shava asana and Yoganidra may be practiced. Also, deep breathing procedures of Pranayaam especially Kapalbhati and anulom-Vilom Pranayaam would be a sure aid in systematic detoxification of the body.
It is mandatory that all yoga practices be undertaken under the guidance of a yoga expert.
Copyright Dr Sonica Krishan @ 2011
Published article: http://completewellbeing.com/article/wash-it-off/