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Archive for the ‘Ayurveda’ Category

Kapha Season in Seattle WALate winter and early spring are considered Kapha Season in Ayurveda. This means that we can adjust our daily lifestyle choices to find balance in body and mind. When one quality is present (for example, cold), we create balance by adding the opposite quality (hot).

Kapha dosha is dominated by the water and earth elements. If you mix water and earth, you create mud. It makes sense that kapha energy is heavy, sticky, lubricated, steady, cold and nurturing. Just like the fertile mud gives rise to beautiful plants and flowers, kapha energy stabilizes us for growth.

6 Tips for Kapha Season

1. Exercise every day! This is especially important for people with a Kapha-dominant constitution. Walking, swimming, biking, running and yoga are all good choices. Since we remove ama (toxins) through movement and sweat, this one tip will make a huge difference.

2. Add some spice to your life. Sprinkle cardamom, wasabi, cayenne, ginger, garlic, cloves, cinnamon, pepper and mustard seed on your food to add heat and spark agni, the all-important digestive fire. Foods that are dry, warm and spicy clear congestion and keep things moving.

3. Sip warm water. Warm foods and drinks are easier to digest and help keep us regular. Consider warm water with 1/4 tsp cayenne powder, 1 tbsp lemon juice, and 1 tsp raw honey for a detoxifying tea.

4. Breath freely by using a neti-pot. Since Kapha dominates the chest and upper stomach regions of the body, it’s wet and sticky nature causes mucus to get stuck. The neti-pot helps flush out mucus and seasonal allergens.

5. Favor light fruits like apples, pears, pomegranates and apricots. Avoid heavy fruits like bananas, avocado, pineapple, orange, dates and figs.

6. Declutter! Kapha-dominate people tend to collect things. This type of material “congestion” weighs us down. Instead, spend a few minutes each day recycling papers, donating clothes or cleaning things up. It will help you feel free and light in mind and body.

Incorporate these tips to breathe freely and enjoy balance during this beautiful season.

Nicole-200x300Nicole Perriella is an Ayurvedic Health Coach and Hatha Yoga Teacher at the Glow Natural Health Center in Seattle, WA.  Through diet, lifestyle, herbs, yoga, meditation and pranayama, Nicole guides clients to correct imbalances to look and feel their best. Her writing has been featured on Seattle Seedling, Ayurveda Apothecary and Everyday Ayurveda.  Learn more at www.nicoleperriella.com.

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By Nicole Perriella, Ayurvedic Health Coach

Skin Brushing Glow Natural Health Seattle WADry body brushing is a cleansing practice that allows us to sluff off what we no longer need. This physical and symbolic daily cleansing can help you process and release experiences that feel “stuck” in your body.

The skin is the largest organ in the body and is responsible for one-fourth of the body’s detoxification each day, making it one of the most important elimination organs. Toxins can gather beneath the skin’s surface from such common influences as soaps, skin creams, deodorants and our environment.

When you dry skin brush, you stimulate the lymphatic system to cleanse itself of the toxins that collect in the lymph glands. You can use this ancient yet simple technique to improve the surface circulation of the skin, keeping the pores of the skin open, encouraging your body’s discharge of metabolic wastes, and resulting in an improved ability to combat bacteria.

Benefits

  1. Stimulates circulation
  1. Increases cell renewal
  1. Cleanses the lymphatic system
  1. Removes dead skin layers
  1. Stimulates the glands, thus helping all of the body systems to perform at peak efficiency.
  1. Reduces cellulite

How to Dry Skin Brush

Use a long handled, natural bristle brush so as not to irritate the surface of your skin. Brush before showering. Start at your ankles and use long sweeping, circular strokes and guide the brush up towards your liver (lower right side of your abdomen). Next, brush across your stomach, chest, back and buttocks. Lastly, brush your arms, always bringing the brush to “dump” toxins at the liver. Use circular strokes around the joints.

Consider this technique part of your gentle, self-care routine. Breathe deeply to make it a moving meditation. Any physical practice becomes more effective by intentionally using your mind to enhance the positive benefits. Think about any thought patterns, habits or experiences that you would like to let go. Allow them to clear out as you body brush. It’s an invigorating and gentle way to start the day. Enjoy!

Nicole Perriella is an Ayurvedic Health Coach and Hatha Yoga Teacher at the Glow Natural Health Center in Seattle, WA.  Through diet, lifestyle, herbs, yoga, meditation and pranayama, Nicole guides clients to correct imbalances to look and feel their best. Her writing has been featured on Seattle Seedling, Ayurveda Apothecary and Everyday Ayurveda.  Find her at www.nicoleperriella.com.

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I love this side dish in the cold winter months. It’s a beautiful bright orange,tasty and good for you!

1 head cauliflower, cut into florets

1-2 t Turmeric

5 cloves of garlic, peeled with the ends taken off

¼ cup almonds

3 T olive oil

1 small yellow onion (optional)

Salt to taste

Preheat oven to 425 degrees

Toss all ingredients together and place into a medium baking dish. Roast until tender 20-25 minutes. Serve hot.

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By Lindsey Lawson MS EAMP, Acupuncturist and Clinic Director

Being an avid cook I am always looking for easy, delicious and healthy ideas to pass on. Right now I am loving turmeric!! It’s got a mild taste, warming nature and anti- inflammatory properties that make it an excellent choice for healthy living. This bright orange herb is one of my favorites with garlic for a quick chicken dish or on a side of veggies. I love to make soup with the left-overs too ( of course I add more tumeric!). It feels so hearty and nourishing. I try to add it near the end of the cooking process to preserve the health promoting qualities.

Turmeric is a member of the ginger family and has been used in East Asian Medicine and Ayurveda for centuries to treat digestive and liver disorders, skin diseases and as an anti-inflammatory. The west is beginning to discover it as well, touting it’s antibiotic, anti-inflammatory, antiviral, anti-fungal, anti-oxidant, anti-cancer abilities. Combine it with black pepper to make it even more bioavailable. (1) The active ingredient Curcumin is a component of many natural anti-inflammatories and pain relievers. This compound also shows promise in treating Rheumatoid Arthritis. (2)

The raw herb is available in bulk at Glow and  we also carry Phyto-Curcumin which contains the anti-inflammatory CurcuminTumeric for pain releif derived from Turmeric.

1 Shoba G, Joy D, Joseph T, Majeed M, Rajendran R, Srinivas PS.

Influence of piperine on the pharmacokinetics of curcumin in

animals and human volunteers. Planta Med. 1998;64(4):353-356.

2 Funk JL, Frye JB, Oyarzo JN, et al. Efficacy and mechanism of action

of turmeric supplements in the treatment of experimental arthritis.

Arthritis Rheum. 2006;54(11):3452-3464.

Other resources on Turmeric:

Turmeric extracts containing Curcuminoids prevent experimental rheumatoid arthritis.

Antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties of Curcumin.

This is a comprehensive article on Turmeric from the University of Maryland

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basil2by Nicole Perriella

It’s basil season, and I can’t get enough. This fragrant and delicious herb makes any meal feel alive and fresh. This week I made a Spinach and Basil Pesto using produce from my Tiny’s Organic CSA bag. The recipe is so easy and goes with everything. First I put the pesto over quinoa pasta. The next day I put it over mayacoba beans and broiled asparagus. I’m excited to try it on pizza and other grilled veggies. The major hit of nutrients (calcium, fiber, folic acid, magnesium, lutein, vitamins A & C) explains the happy glow after eating. For a fun, fresh dose of summer, just add ingredients and blend.

Spinach and Basil Pesto
2 cups spinach leaves (more…)

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By Nicole Perriella, Ayurvedic Practitioner

In Seattle, dreams of summer strolls and fresh berries at the farmers market dance in our heads all winter long.  As the days get longer and we leave our jackets at home, we embrace the ancient secrets of Ayurveda to balance our bodies.  An Ayurvedic seasonal routine helps us achieve the peaceful mind, abundant energy and gorgeous glow that we all desire.  Instinctually, we know that we don’t want to eat the same foods, dress the same way or have the same routines every day for the entire year.  We adapt to seasonal cycles because these external forces create internal changes as well.  Summer is known as the “Pitta season” because it is dominated by the fire element.

In Ayurveda, when one quality increases, we add the opposite quality to achieve a healthy balance.  For example, when tea is too hot, we add ice (or time) to bring down the heat.  Similarly, in the warm summer months, we benefit from adding cooling spices, foods, activities and routines to our busy lives.  Cooling spices include fennel, coriander, peppermint and rose.  Cucumber, cilantro, mint, coconut water, lettuce, peas, apples, strawberries and figs are refreshing food choices for summer.  These make delicious additions to a smoothie, soup, salad or stir fry.

CAUTION!  You may notice that your Pitta is aggravated if you’re feeling angry, competitive, jealous or flustered.  You may suffer from acne breakouts or red, irritated skin.  Sour belching, heartburn, loose stools and excess sweating or thirst are other signs of Pitta imbalance.  (more…)

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