In these modern times, it is apparent that our lives are more like machines: with loads and loads of work, stress, and discontent. The unequaled spirit of cutthroat competition is the sole reason for physical as well as emotional stress.
Be it from studies or a job, business or relationships, everywhere and each new day we find ourselves combating with more stress. As it establishes itself within your system, stress tends to lower the body’s own resistance power, and in the long run results in the production of a number of physical and mental ailments.
As a bane, there are unexpected cases of depression, nervous breakdown, suicidal attempts, antisocial behavior, impairment of memory, physical and mental fatigue, and even premature aging.
Ayurveda Analysis of Stress
Ayurveda believes that vitiation in either of the three doshas or body humors—vatta (air), pitta (fire), and kapha (phlegm)—results into production of a disease both in bodily as well as psychic spheres.
- Vitiation in the vatta dosha or air body humor destroys one’s mental sense and gives rise to grief and infatuation.
- When the fire or pitta dosha manifests and increases inside the body, there is production of mental states of excessive fear, lust, and grief.
- Similarly, imbalance in the kapha or the phlegm body humor may cause lethargy, anxiety, and indiscrimination.
Practical Suggestions to Relieve Stress
There are a number of Ayurvedic approaches one can take to help relieve the stress felt in the body and mind.
- The daily diet intake should be regularized in means of proper timing as well as nutritional balance. Try avoiding oily, heavy, and spicy meals in your routine. Fresh juices, fibrous foods, raw green vegetables, and garden herbs provide with ample supply of antioxidants and resistance boosters. A good amount of water intake is also a must.
- A sound mind dwells in a sound body. It is therefore essential to keep the body fit and healthy in order to develop better intellect. A regular exercise schedule or walks in fresh air—especially in the early sunrise—could do wonders.
- Sound sleep for eight hours is your daily rest requirement for the proper functioning and recharging of your brainpowers.
- Make a daily work list and try to handle problems one by one, as it would be rather difficult to cope up with the accumulation.
- It is equally important to stay involved and seek for counseling whenever required.
- You need to wake up early in the morning . . . with the first morning sun rays! The juvenile ultraviolet rays emitted during dawn tend to work as mind stimulators and mood dilators.
- Yoga poses like shavasana and yoga nidra, as well as deep breathing techniques called pranayaam, are going to help you greatly, especially anulom—vilom and bhramari pranayaam.
- Take to vegan diet, which is more saatvik and therefore enhances positivity of the mind. Eat more of seasonal fruits, vegetables, sprouts. Naturopathy suggests an 80% alkaline diet in everyday meals.
- Lavender oil as aromatic drops may be used in bath and burnt in your room for relieving aroma.
- Massage the of soles of the feet with some warming oil, like sesame seed oil. Also, you need to use some cooling oil for daily massage of your scalp. Elaadi tailam or coconut oil are good.
- Sound sleep at night is rather mandatory.
- Panchkarma techniques of shirodhara and nasya are good. You can use desi ghee or almond drops for the same.
- Meditation is going to be of highest support!
- Connecting with all the five natural elements—ether, air, sun, water and earth—is needed.
- Also, keeping occupied mentally during the day in any creative activity that makes you feel happy and positive is mandatory.
Ayurveda Cures for Stress Relief
Ayurveda claims at not only increasing the powers of the brain but also at keeping the mental diseases away, along with helping to cure them desirably.
- A herb called shankhpushpi is believed to have a cooling, calming, rejuvenating, and subsiding action on the brain. One teaspoonful of its powder taken twice daily for some time increases energy and digestive powers. It is useful in insomnia, improves memory, improves weak appetite, acts as a blood purifier, and gives sound sleep.
- Bramhi is another useful brain tonic that is believed to increase the intellect and fight mental stress and strain. Powder of this herb taken along with herbs aspragus and ashwagandha aid in reducing the increased pitta or fire in the system, and thus gives a calming effect to the brain. It is also a cure for bilious headaches.
- Roots of herb jatamansi tones up the brain and stabilizes mental abilities. It is an excellent tonic as it helps to subside all the three humors. It has a specific action on the nervous system and helps cure many mental diseases like insomnia, epilepsy, hysteria, and loss of memory.
- Bhram rasayana and sarswatarishta are some of the Ayurvedic formulations that not only aid in improving mental alertness, memory, and stress threshold of an individual, but also help in keeping the degenerative diseases of the brain at a distance.
- Massage of the scalp and soles of the feet with sesame seed oil or til tailam is also suggested.
- Cow’s ghee is quite beneficial for the brain. It should be included in daily diet and can also be inhaled through the nostrils.
- Ayurveda herb of ashwagandha is recommended for relieving stress.
Dr. Sonica Krishan is Ayurveda and Natural Lifestyle Healer and Consultant based at Chandigarh, India. She has authored the natural home cure books Herbal Healers, Home Remedies, and Healing Through Ayurveda. Dr. Sonica is presently writing for national and international publications. She may be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org or visit http://www.herboveda.co.in/.