April 12, 2013 by  
Filed under Tips for Ayurveda

HOT water bath damages natural softness of skinDry skin makes an individual look dull and overall unkempt due to lack of moisture. Wrinkles are seen all over the body. Well hydrated skin gives a healthy look, person also feels confident as there is nothing to shy away. Skin is the reflection of a person’s health, balance of body, mind and soul.

According to Ayurveda, dry skin is caused due to Vata Dosha. When Vata dosha increases in the body it makes the skin dry and wrinkled.

Causes for increase of Vata dosha in the body:

  • Irregular food habits.
  • Controlling natural urges like urination, passing stools, hunger, thirst ,etc
  • Excess physical and mental exertion.
  • Insufficient sleep and varying patterns, Staying awake for longer durations at night.
  • Consumption of oily foods
  • Exposure to cold and dry climate.

 Natural tips to take care of your skin

  • Hot  water should not be used for bathing. Warm water that transfers the water temperature from cold to room temperature is sufficient for bathing and cleaning the skin.
  • Use soft towel or cotton towel to pat the skin dry. Do not rub the skin with rough cloth or towel.
  • Avoid harsh chemicals and soaps. They will remove the natural oils present in the skin and make it dry.
  • Apply and massage your skin with a moisturizer. Moisturizer will balance the upper layers of skin and make it look soft and smooth. Recommended to apply immediately after bath as the skin is slightly moist.
  • Avoid alcohol based cleaners as the skin will become dehydrated.
  • Massage your skin prior to bath with coconut oil.
  • Avoid oily and junk food. Follow a balanced diet which includes fruits, vegetables, milk, cereals and carbohydrates.
  • Practice yoga or meditation for having a pleasant mind and keep away from stress.
  • Massage your skin with herbal oil. It softens the dry skin, provides lubrication to the skin too.

People suffering with skin ailments and diabetes should be extremely careful in checking dry skin areas for any deep cracks.  Dry and cracked skin harbors microbes which cause fungal infections. Dry skin is common for those suffering with hypothyroidism, eczema,  psoriasis etc…

Methods to prevent dryness of skin:

    • Preferably drink warm water ( 7 to 9 glasses). This will decrease vata dosha problem.
    • Avoid hot water for bathing. Regular usage will damage the skin and the skin will lose all moisture .
    • Use face pack that improves skin softness. Mix honey, egg white, olive oil and rose water and leave it for 20 mins on face. The skin softness will improve.

  • Aloe vera is a good moisturizer. Few are sensitive to natural gel from the leaf , they can go for the products that are available Over the Counter (OTC) in medical stores.
  • Use pH balanced soap to avoid dryness of skin .
  • Drinking water or soft water is ideal for washing the face as the skin of face is very sensitive.
  • Protect your skin from extreme climatic changes like cold and heat.

As you grow old the skin looses its capacity to retain moisture. You can take a little effort and maintain your skin.


September 13, 2012 by  
Filed under An Introduction to Ayurveda

Ayurveda is a science of life based on Vedas, the Hindu books of knowledge and wisdom. In Sanskrit , Ayurveda means “ Knowledge of life” . Ayurveda is a healthy-lifestyle system that people in India have used for more than 5,000 years. Ayurveda is perhaps the most complete system of living, embracing not only medicine, but also philosophy, psychology, lifestyle and health.

Ayurvedic medicine is holistic, which means viewing the body and mind as a whole.

According to Ayurveda, the five elements of nature (space, air, fire, water, earth) , also known as Panchabhutas combine in the body as three components (doshas) known as Vatta, Pitta and Kapha. These doshas ( life forces) relate closely to the basic elements of nature and to specific functions of the body. A balance of these doshas is thought to be required for optimal health.

 Vatta is represented by Air and Space. It is considered the most powerful dosha because it controls very basic body processes such as cell division, the heart, breathing, muscle and joint movement ,discharge of waste and the mind . Vatta also controls anxiety, fear, pain and other functions of the nervous system.

 Pitta is represented by Fire and Water. Pitta, which is thought to control such bodily functions as digestion, hormones, metabolism, intelligence and skin color. Pitta controls the emotions of anger, hate and jealousy.

Kapha is represented by Earth and Water . The physical structure of the body, growth of the body and the immune system are governed by Kapha. Emotional responses thought to be controlled by Kapha include calmness, forgiveness, love and greed.

The doshas, which are determined at the time of conception, also is reflected in an individual’s physical makeup and personality. A person with a Vatta makeup tends to have a small, thin build. The Pitta body style is more of a medium, muscular build. The Kapha appearance is usually bigger and well-developed. Most people are considered to have a combination of doshas, with one type of dosha usually being predominant.

The natural constitution is called the prakriti. The prakriti is a person’s unique combination of physical and psychological characteristics and the way the body functions to maintain health. It is influenced by such factors as digestion and how the body deals with waste products. The prakriti is believed to be unchanged over a person’s lifetime.

The most basic idea of Ayurveda is the concept of balance. We are healthy and happy when our doshas and our gunas are properly balanced. Most disease results from an imbalance of our doshas. To heal the disease, the Ayurvedic practitioner attempts through various treatments , dietary changes and exercise to restore the balance.

According to the ayurvedic philosophy, you can also use yoga, meditation or counseling to treat disease.The balanced body then heals itself.

 How is Ayurveda used ?

People use ayurvedic practices to maintain health, reduce stress and improve flexibility, strength, and stamina. Researchers have found that yoga and meditation can be effective ways to treat diseases such as asthma, high blood pressure and arthritis.

Ayurveda stresses proper diet for maintaining good health and treating disease. Ayurvedic medicines are prescribed based on the person’s dosha type.

Researchers are studying the effects of ayurvedic herbal medicines on various long-term (chronic) illnesses.

Is it safe to use Ayurveda and follow its practices?

Ayurvedic practices such as yoga and meditation can be safe ways to promote health. If you have a long-term illness, you may be able to combine ayurveda with conventional medical treatment including counseling.

Ayurvedic herbal medicines, like conventional medicines, may cause side effects, trigger allergic reactions, or interact with other medicines or herbs you are taking. Some ayurvedic medicines may contain high levels of heavy metals.

A study in the recent times has indicated the presence of potentially harmful levels of lead and other heavy metals.

Always tell your doctor all your ailments and also the medicines you have been taking during that duration. Mention about all herbs and natural supplements. If you have already been on the course of ayurvedic medicine products, ask your doctor about screening for heavy metals.

To summarize, Ayurveda is a system that uses the body’s own defenses to restore and maintain health and happiness