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Ayurveda for Detox

by jenny sansouci on December 22, 2012

I just watched a really cool and interesting video on GaiamTV featuring Dr. John Douillard, one of my favorite teachers from the Institute for Integrative Nutrition. He’s an expert on Ayurveda (a traditional form of alternative medicine native to India) and was one of my teachers in Costa Rica. I always learn new gems of Ayurvedic wisdom when he teaches.

The video focused on using Ayurvedic traditions to remove toxins in order to feel healthier, happier, lighter and more able to show up for our lives with energy and strength.

According to Dr. Douillard, any of these symptoms are considered conditions related to toxins in the body:

-being overweight
-having no energy, lethargic
-experiencing joints aches
-skin issues
-poor immune system
-water retention
-sinus congestion

The toxins that contribute to these conditions come from things like polluted air, toxins in the environment and processed foods. The liver, kidney and lymphatic system are constantly removing waste and toxins from our bodies. “Proper detox and understanding how nature detoxes,” Dr. Douillard says, “is critical to good health.”

The beautiful thing about Ayurveda is that it’s the study of nature. Nature provides us harvest, medicine and tools for us to properly detox in every season. In winter, we have the natural ingredients available to eat warm soups and stews because it’s cold and dry outside. In the spring, we harvest leafy greens, sprouts and berries. Nature provides these alkaline foods to detoxify the body. In the summer, we need energy foods – fresh fruits and vegetables. At the end of summer, we need to prepare for winter and detoxify the excess heat with things like apples, pears and pomegranates.

According to Dr. Douillard, if you eat with the seasons you get the natural benefits of detox. So if you focus on eating seasonal foods, you’ll begin a cycle of naturally detoxing your body from toxins all the time! That is awesome. Learn more about how to eat seasonally.

Dr. Douillard says that we have to realize that nature is trying it’s best to prevent the accumulation of toxins in our body. We have to understand how to live in harmony with the natural cycles of nature. He also tells us that there is a relationship between stress and how we detoxify. If we are under a lot of stress, the body will hold on to fat.

Along with eating seasonally, Dr. Douillard recommends adding these habits to your daily routine for natural detox:

-Start day with large glass of warm water
-Scrape your tongue (cleans out your mouth and stimulates digestive system)
-Do some yoga, breathing exercises and meditation
-Self oil massage to calm nervous system
-Have a nice, relaxing breakfast
-Don’t snack between breakfast and lunch
-Have a relaxing lunch
-Don’t snack between lunch and dinner
-Have a small dinner
-Get to bed early

Detoxing can reset your system, give you more energy, improve your digestion, help you shed unnecessary weight and make you feel clearer emotionally and mentally.

John Douillard had a lot more to say on Ayurveda for detox in the video, including instructions on how to do a 4-day Ayurvedic detox. Watch the video here on GaiamTV!

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