Part I -“Heal-arious as can be“
We all love adventures in our own ways and every time you put yourself out there, you learn something and you will dirty your hands, get hurt, break a limb and lose an eye (okay may be not that drastic). A cell is a world in itself and it can divide and multiply. The whole process replaces old cells and this causes physical healing in our bodies. All the elements are natural healers and our body is meant to heal when the elements are well balanced. Small things you can incorporate daily to achieve this:
- Greenery: Our eyes are the only part of the body that never grow in size from birth to death. It is almost telling us “To look at the world the same way as when we didn’t understand anything.” That’s when we had most amount of common sense. Being in the centre of the spectrum, green is the colour of balance, which strikes the eye in such a way as to require no adjustments. Therefore, seeing green colour helps your eyes quickly recover from strain. Forest bathing (shinrin-yoku) is a thing in Japan, where people connect with the natural forest atmosphere and this nature therapy is a cornerstone of preventive healthcare. Just being and immersing ourselves in nature can cure us and keep us healthy.
- Physical movement: Why didn’t I say exercising? For healing just getting your body moving is enough. You can dance, jump about or walk or just do some cleaning. Physical activity is essential because our bodies were meant to move and not be stationary and glued to our chairs and couches. If you move enough everyday and don’t have a sedentary lifestyle you would recover (if you fell sick, or had a health issue) sooner than some one who is a couch potato. Mental health improves by just getting yourself some exercise.
- Laughing: There are plenty of live comedy shows, comedy movies, hilarious reads and Netflix comedy series. Endorphins are released in our bodies, everytime we laugh, increasing our body’s production of antibodies and T-cells that fight off disease and boost our immune system. A strong immune system is essential to healing. Funnier people definitely have it easier in life. So make sure you get some laughter in everyday, it’s the most fun way to heal.
- Good bacteria: Gut health is not a new topic and there is more awareness today about good bacteria that they make up ninety percent of our body. We can incorporate fermented food in our diets and avoid antibiotics which destroy good along with bad bacteria. Fermented foods like sauerkraut, kimchi, pickles, ACV, Coconut vinegar, Beetroot Kvaas, Kombucha and Rice-cake(Idli) batter is what I’ve tried. Gut health also improves with exposure to different bacteria, from pets like dogs, travelling to different countries and farming and playing in the mud. So pick up that spade and start gardening in your backyard.
- Animals: How does cuddling your dog feel? It’s a boon that we have so many animals, still not extinct and we can co-exist and benefit each other. Yes, gut health does improve with having pets at home but this link will surprise you how some animals can even heal you. This link has so many interesting facts: https://www.goodnet.org/articles/5-animals-incredible-healing-powers-list. We have a symbiotic relationship with so many animals. Humans can really connect with other species, we hardly see a goat and cow hugging each other but humans can do that with so many of the domestic species. A research reveals that those who rear cats and dogs have healthy hearts as compared to their counterparts. If you don’t have pets make sure you meet your neighbour’s once in a while.
- Early morning Sunlight: As the famous health adage goes: everything in moderation. And sunlight is NO exception. In moderate amounts, exposing our skin to sunlight on a regular basis—especially a daily basis—can have numerous and immense benefits on some surprising facets to our health. The Vitamin D bit everyone is already aware, but sunlight can helps cure seasonal depression, improve the immune system. The human eye contains photosensitive cells in its retina, with connections directly to the pituitary gland in the brain. Stimulation of these important cells comes from sunlight, in particular, the blue unseen spectrum. Taking a peek outside at the dawn’s first sunlight is a habit worth implementing.
- Doing something new: Learning a new language or a new skill, even doing a new activity helps the brain cells produce new neural pathways and electrical connections. This helps the white matter remain dense and healthy, increasing the ability to do learn faster and heal fast. Its important we stimulate our brain with new experiences every week if not everyday. Monotony can reduce the brains capacity and in the long run lead to dementia. Prevention is better than cure and we can do our bit in maintaining the health.
- Sleeping well: Sleeping repairs your body like nothing else. Resting is different, you’re conscious and awake when resting. Sleep stops most of the functions in your body and only the involuntary systems are functioning. Your brain also gets rid of 60 percent more toxins when you get the proper amount of sleep. Wounds heal faster when we sleep. I sometimes try to sleep off a flu and it works. So get at least 7-8 hours of sleep. Good night.
When I was in school I fell on the field, in the corridor, on the paved ground, stoned areas, in the class and even tripped over nothing. The skirt and pinafore didn’t help with the knees either. My knees and elbows always had scratches and wounds. The school nurse even asked me once while applying tincture “Why did you fall again?” in her loud angry voice. They all healed though; every one of them. The scar would stay for a bit but eventually new skin cells replaced the old ones and now no one can tell I was a reckless child.
Just like a wound every other part of our body, made up of living cells, are meant to heal. The body heals on its own and how?
I would love to share a few healing tips that I’ve incorporated in my life. Skip the ones you feel are ‘extra’ for you, but try them all.
- Resting: This is most under-rated in the hustle hustle outlook of people today. Sadhguru on resting, “If your relaxation is not of good quality, your work will not be of good quality.” I had a back injury a while back and my physiotherapist recommended complete rest. It was 80 percent better within a day’s time. The best way to get off a cold and flu is ample amount of rest. Without popping a pill and just giving your body the rest it needs is what I see so many people sort to these days.
- Fasting: Fasting is the resting of your digestive system. It is really like a system reboot in the body and it helps the in improving stomach health, healing other parts of the body and even keeps you alert. There’s intermittent fasting, Dry fasting, seasonal fasting and other types. Thanks to my mother I’ve been intermittent fasting all my life. I read about this concept only recently, and it works like magic. I recommend you go through what Luke Coutinho has to share about fasting, he explains it the best and he’s a certified nutritionist.
- Breathing: Did you take a deep breath after reading that? I’ve caught my breathing taking casual pauses like its waiting for me to notice. I have heard a few people have cured hormonal imbalances by just following Yogic breathing techniques; Pranayama. I haven’t tried this in a disciplined way, but everytime I’ve done Anulom Vilom it has made me feel alert. Fresh air is essential to life and holding a good posture almost makes it natural to take deep breaths. Correcting posture can correct the breathing to be involuntarily smooth. To be a little extra: You could try the balloon technique in the following link: https://www.sonima.com/fitness/email-apnea/ .
- Meditating: I am more acquainted with this now, and written vastly about meditating in my previous articles. Meditating can heal your mind, body and emotional state magically. It takes discipline and consistency to reach there but its definitely something each human being was born to do. We have evolved to depend on different sources of energy outside; electricity, internet, wifi; but the real source of energy is life and when we meditate we focus on that. We are inbuilt with this “soul energy”, we just have to focus and tap into it.
- Salt: Yes, Epsom salt baths is trendy if you haven’t tried it yet and the new thing is to buy Himalayan pink salt Lamps! I have been using hot salt potli’s to recover sore muscles and muscle cramps. (heat the salt in a pan, put it in a handkerchief and tie a knot so it doesn’t spill, ready!) This heals the fastest! “The cure for anything is salt water: sweat, tears or the sea.”— Isak Dinesen. Learn about Salt healing from this article :http://www.asianage.com/health-fitness/healing-power-salt-101
- Copper: Copper bottles have been fashionable for a while now without the science behind it getting famous. Just like our other trends. Copper has anti-microbial properties and it helps in the absorption of iron. As per our Ancient Indian Ayurveda it is an element that helps in balancing our doshas. Again cautious use of this element can restore hormonal health and other imbalances can be corrected.
- Tisané: Herbal teas were used as a medicine in so older civilizations. People thought it is witchcraft, but they were just our garden herbs. ‘Tisané over Chai‘ has a few herbal tea infusions you can read on the website. ‘More Tisané’ will be published very soon keep an eye out. Herbs are mother nature’s potpourri which we have at our disposal.
TO BE Contd…
(Serves- 5 cups)
Cook Time: 30 min
5 glasses water
4 big tomatoes chopped into 8 pieces
15 cloves garlic grounded finely
Handful coriander stems grounded fairly
2-teaspoon pepper ground it finely
2-teaspoon jeera ground finely
(*Heat the pepper and jeera together in a deep pan for about 4 min, then ground it together in a mortar piston)
1-cup imli water (imli dipped in hot water)
Half-teaspoon turmeric powder
6-7 cloves garlic ground fairly
4 long dry red chili
10-15 curry leaves
1 spoon rai
2-teaspoon oil (I used coconut oil)
Boil the water, add the cut tomatoes. Once its completely boiled reduce the water into a deep saucer, and smash the tomatoes with a smasher. Add the water back and add garlic, coriander, pepper, jeera, imli water and turmeric powder.
Let it boil.
Heat the oil in the deep saucer, add rai once its hot enough. Once the rai pops add dry chili, curry leaves and garlic. Sauté for about 2 min till flavor is strong.
Final step add the tomato water in the chownk. Add Part A to Part B then stir for about 15 min till it’s a bit thicker. Then add 2 teaspoon Salt or as per requirement and stir.
Strain the whole concoction and serve with a coriander leaf floating on top! Lol