Ayurveda Life: Cleansing for Health
We are excited to bring you another post in a comprehensive series on the practice of Ayurveda. ‘Ayurveda Life’ is a weekly series of posts from some of the most influential Ayurvedic authors and organizations. We are proud to partner with Banyan Botanicals and hope that you enjoy and share these posts with your communities.
“Yoga and Ayurveda are sister sciences that developed together and repeatedly influenced each other throughout history. Yoga and Ayurveda work together to enhance their great benefits on all levels”.
“The link between yoga and Ayurveda is prana, or the life force. Yoga is the intelligence of prana seeking greater evolutionary transformations, while Ayurveda is its healing power…” ~ Dr. David Frawley
Cleansing for Health
Cleansing to achieve optimal health has become a standard of holistic health care. It is common to undergo a weekly, monthly, and even month long annual cleanse not just to rid the body of toxicity, but to also cleanse the mind and connect spiritually.
The human body is an incredibly intelligent and high functioning machine. It is perfectly designed to digest and eliminate toxins on a daily basis. In fact, every morning when you eliminate, you are cleansing the system and can do a status check on your health. Your elimination should be easy, quick, with no noxious odor, and should be the consistency of a banana. This perfect elimination is a sign of optimal digestive health.
There is neither toxic sludge nor undigested food stuck in your body. In fact, the cells of your digestive system are renewed every three to five days. You may have heavy metals and pollutants stored in your fat cells making you feel sick and creating a need to cleanse, but this is not common. A better reason to cleanse once a week, for a few days monthly, or for 28 days annually is to eliminate the most toxic substance called poor choice making and establish positive nourishing habits.
Let’s face it. You are most likely familiar with what is good and bad for you. Daily meditation, movement, and mindfulness are commonly accepted as the most powerful modalities to manage stress and stay happy. The most nourishing foods are beans, grains, vegetables, fruits, nuts, seeds, and oils. Fast, fried, and greasy is out. Humane, whole, organic and local is in.
Sadly, it’s hard to consistently make good choices and easy to get in the habit of poor choice making. It doesn’t take long before the digestive fire is diminished opening a pathway for diseases of the mind and body. Utilize cleansing as a holistic modality to reset the digestive system and to jump-start better choice making.
For health maintenance, partake in the gentle cleanse below one day a week. I recommend Mondays because the weekend is usually when we make our worst choices. If you forgo the weekly cleanse, then choose to participate in a two to three day monthly cleanse as below. Time your monthly cleanse with the end of your menstrual cycle or the full moon.
If you are experiencing any of the following, it is recommended to experience a 28-day more intensive cleanse supported by a coach.
- Inflammation, fibromyalgia, arthritis
- Fatigue, weakness, lethargy
- Lack of joy, depression, cynicism, pessimism
- Sleeplessness or Insomnia
- Weight gain or obesity
- You have been traveling
- Irregular or painful menstrual cycles
- Poor experience of menopause
- Heart disease, high cholesterol, high blood pressure
- Extreme emotions of anger, jealousy, or hate
- Post Surgery (2 – 6 weeks after with doctor’s permission)
- Life change including separation, divorce, empty nest
- Lack of meaningful work or relationship
The Gentle Cleanse for 1 – 3 days:
Wake up before the sun
Move the body for 30 minutes
Meditate for 20 minutes
Journal and contemplate or pray
Breakfast within one hour of rising:
Hot water with lemon to stoke the digestive fire
Lunch around noon:
Slice of whole grain bread with ghee
Dinner not within two hours of bedtime
Snacks are optional and please wait two hours after eating a meal
Hot ginger tea
Yogi Drink of warmed almond milk, cinnamon, nutmeg, turmeric poured into a mug with six almonds and a teaspoon of honey.
Dates stuffed with almond butter if you are eliminating white sugar and have a craving.
Carrot juice if you are eliminating alcohol and have a craving.
Drink 6 – 8 servings of water each day, but not more. Your tea counts as a serving of water.
Be in bed relaxing and reading by 10 pm
TV, Radio, News, Talking, Excessive Noise, Social Media and Tasking
Eliminate Cold Turkey:
Alcohol, processed foods, sugar, meat
Cut back on:
Silence, stillness, nature, walking, reading, yoga
- What is the one choice you make daily that is creating the most problems in your life? Write 3 action steps to make a better choice.
- What makes you smile spontaneously? What do you get lost in while doing? How can you experience this daily, weekly, or monthly?
- Write about a major success in your life and how you got there.
- Who do you love and why? How do they reflect back to you your own gorgeous qualities? Tell them.
- Write down 7 things that you believe with your whole heart.
- Talk about a synchronistic event in your life where everything magically came together.
- Write a thank you letter to Spirit and also ask for one thing that you really desire. Tell Spirit why you deserve this thing and how your life will change when you get it.
Pamela Quinn is the founder of Elemental OM, the author of “The Elemental Cleanse,” a teacher of Hatha Yoga, Kundalini Yoga, and Ayurveda. You can learn more from Pamela at www.elementalom.com or simply email questions to Pamela@elementalom.com. Connect with Pamela on Facebook