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Ayurveda: Taking control of your health

Katherine Mahoney

Katherine Mahoney is a qualified Ayurvedic Lifestyle & Nutrition Consultant and has a special interest in the importance of the digestive fire (gut) to maintain optimum mind, body & soul balance.

Ever seen the terms ‘ayurvedic massage’, ‘ayurvedic rituals’ or ‘ayurvedic body types’ and felt unsure about what they really meant? You’re probably not alone! The principles of ayurveda are simple, but they can be tricky to follow without some guidance. But don’t worry, I’m here to help you understand the basics of ayurveda and how you can incorporate it into your daily routine.


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What is ayurveda?

Translated from Sanskrit, Ayurveda means ‘the science of life’. It’s a holistic health system that has been practiced in India for thousands of years. The lesser-known sister science of yoga, the goal of ayurveda is to create balance in the body, mind, and spirit.

But despite being an ancient system of medicine, ayurveda is more relevant to our busy modern lifestyles than ever before. The goal is to live in harmony with the natural world and create balance in our lives. This can be done by following the ayurvedic principles of diet, lifestyle, and self-care.

How does ayurveda work?

The goal of ayurveda is to create balance between mind, body and spirit. And this begins with the five natural elements: earth, water, fire, air, and ether. Ayurveda teaches us that, as individuals, we are made up of these five elements and that they represent different components of our physical and mental characteristics. Our ‘dosha’ represents a different combination of these five elements.

What are doshas?

Think of them as your energy type. How each three doshas appear and in what percentage, is what makes each of us unique.

Ayurveda believes illness is caused by an imbalance of these doshas. Being aware of your own unique dosha will help you adjust certain elements to maintain a healthy balance and preserve ultimate health. If you are currently experiencing symptoms of illness it may mean more than one of the doshas have been disturbed. The aim is to decode and live in balance with our constitution.

The Three Doshas (Vatta, Pitta and Kapha):

vatta

Vatta – Comprised of Air & Ether

Vatta controls the nervous system and all the movement in the body.
When Vatta is out of balance you may experience:
- Poor circulation
- Anxiety
- Constipation
- Bloating

pitta

Pitta – Comprised of Water & Fire

Pitta operates the stomach and all transformations of the body.
When Pitta is out of balance you may experience:
- Migraines
- Acid reflux
- Feeling hot all of the time
- Diarrhoea

kapha

Kapha – Comprised of Water & Earth

It regulates the structure and all stability in the body.
When Kapha is out of balance you may experience:
- Lethargy
- Depression
- Weight gain
- Swelling

How can I incorporate ayurveda into my daily routine?

There are many ways to incorporate ayurveda into your daily routine. One way is to follow the ayurvedic principles of diet. This means eating a balanced diet that is in harmony with the natural world. You can also follow the ayurvedic principles of lifestyle, which involves practicing yoga and meditation, or use ayurvedic products, such as essential oils and herbs.

Ayurveda and gut health

There is a term in ayurveda called ‘agni’. In Sanskrit, this means ‘fire’, i.e. the digestive fire that exists within our gut. Ayurveda believes the secret to health lies within the digestive system.

If your digestion (or fire) is not working to its full potential, then all the healthy nutritious food you’re putting into your body won’t be absorbed properly and toxins will begin to accumulate within the gut. The best place to start is to awaken the digestive fire and provide a light detoxification to remove any existing toxins.

There are a number of Ayurvedic herbs and natural remedies that can help improve your digestion and reduce common side effects of digestive problems. The Triphala booster from Mauli Rituals is a great place to start.

Mauli rituals organic triphala booster

Ayurvedic rituals & massage

As well as our diet and digestion, ayurveda teaches the benefits of different kinds of rituals that help to boost overall wellbeing. While most of the knowledge we have on digestion comes from ancient ayurvedic knowledge, the same applies for beauty and ‘self-care’ rituals. Current trends such as oil pulling, massage and tongue scraping are all rooted in ayurveda. So you may even be practicing ayurvedic elements on a daily basis without even realising it.

Ready to embrace ayurveda?

We are all hoping that the next chapter is as healthy and prosperous as possible. So it’s good to know that we are able to control so much of how we feel. In these busy, overwhelming times, perhaps the best thing is to look within ourselves, and within nature, for the answers to our health concerns. And there is no better place to begin than ayurveda.

For specialist one-on-one advice on how ayurveda can improve your health and wellbeing, contact Katherine Mahoney at hello@accha.co.uk or follow her on instagram (@katherinemahoneytherapist).

Shop the Ayurveda Collection below for a range of high-quality ayurvedic supplements and beauty products:


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