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Articles

Spring Season and a Healthy You

Ayurveda is all about balance—how to know if you have it, how to achieve it and how to keep it. One of the most important things you can do to stay in balance is to keep in tune with the calendar. As the seasons slide by, our body's needs also slowly change.

To address this, Ayurveda has come up with a scheme to fine tune your diet and lifestyle practices to stay in harmony with the changes in nature. Ritucharya, the science of seasonal rhythms, is based on the weather outside the window and the effect that will have on the body's patterns of health.

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Men’s Health in Ayurveda

Ayurveda is probably the oldest continuing healing system on the planet. With a tradition going back thousands of years, Ayurveda offers a framework for understanding the body and how to best support its quest for balance. In the Ayurveda tradition of health care, mind, body and spirit are inextricably entwined.

Each of us is unique. But, as Yogi Berra (well, he was a yogi) might say, some of us are more unique than others. Men have simpler plumbing, and they don't go to the doctor as much, but they still need care and attention.

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Cleanse and Restore with Herbs

spring cleanse

At the most basic level, health maintenance is relatively simple: give the body what it needs, and don’t let it have much of what it doesn’t need—and body will run itself. Failing that, imbalances occur, and harmful substances to which you are exposed may not get eliminated quickly or efficiently enough. Cleaning out poisons that build up in the body—safely, naturally and effectively—can result in renewed strength and vitality.

The body needs to dump its waste products so as not to be drenched in its own wastes. When the body is weighed down with harmful materials, normal physiological mechanisms begin to function imperfectly or become dangerously disrupted, resulting after a time in chronic illness.

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Bodywork for Fibromyalgia, Part 1

herbs and Fibromyalgia

When Mary Shomon’s doctor touched her, she cringed in pain. “I asked my doctor to check my fibromyalgia trigger points, and sure enough, I had pain levels that went through the roof at nearly every single spot she tested,” says the suburban Washington, D.C. resident. After suffering through bouts of chronic fatigue syndrome, chronic Epstein-Barr virus, two rear-end car crashes, and whiplash, this mother of two was feeling pretty bad. And then the muscle pain started.

“I met the criteria for a diagnosis of fibromyalgia, but my doctor and physical therapist didn’t really think the official diagnosis was all that critical,” says this previously energetic professional journalist. No matter what anyone called it, conventional medicine offered almost nothing for Shomon.

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Ayurvedic Oil Therapy

Ayurvedic massage

India’s traditional healing system, ayurveda, is making a splash, or rather a splatter, in the world of American massage and bodywork. It’s a bounty of outstanding, effective, thoroughly proven techniques that help people get healthy and stay healthy.

This primordial holistic healing system is a comprehensive approach to health and lifestyle management. And massage and bodywork techniques underpin a vast storehouse of ayurvedic therapeutics. Probably more than any other global holistic healing system, ayurveda has a long history of using sophisticated, albeit low tech, massage techniques as integrated parts of a total healing system for virtually every medical condition.

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Dealing with Psoriasis Naturally

herbs for Psoriasis

Psoriasis is unfortunatly a very commone disease, yet most sufferers are not very satisfied with their medical treatment. Fortunatly, natural methods can be quite successful.

Psoriasis is persistent, unpredictable, disfiguring and irritating, and one of the most baffling of skin disorders. Characterized by dry, well-circumscribed, silvery, scaly growths and plaques of various sizes, psoriasis is a chronic and recurrent disease. In psoriasis, skin cells multiply up to 10 times faster than normal. Underlying cells reach the skin's surface and die. This sheer dead cell volume causes the characteristic raised, red patches covered with white scale.

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Children and Herbs

children and herbs

As holistic medicine moves consistently more into the mainstream, I am often asked, "Can I give my children the same herbal medicines that I take?". Parents have had good success with herbal self treatment, and they want their children to experience the advantages that natural remedies can provide. But they also want to be safe, and our children are our most precious responsibilities.

For the record, most people in the world use herbal medicines nearly exclusively for their health care needs, and this includes children. Older cultures with well established holistic healing systems have useful medicines for the range of childhood illnesses, from tummy upset to the flu.

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Eye Health with Herbs

herbs for eyes

We can’t argue about getting older, but just maybe we can keep our eyes from aging quite so fast. Eye health, like the health of any other part of the body, is very closely connected with total body wellness. Contrary to popular notions, this has been born out in several scientific studies with thousands of patients over many years.

Remember that spectacles, contact lenses, and laser surgery don’t heal the eyes and vision. It’s easy to view the eyes as machines that fail, and can then be crutched up by helpful devices. Eye diseases, particularly those assumed to be “inevitable” as we age, can be prevented in the majority of cases.

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Getting Rid of Those Pesky Hiccups!

hiccup cures

You want a sure fire hiccup remedy? Ask just about anybody. There are as many favorite treatments as there are people. Sorry to say, most don’t cut the mustard. But a few truly are outstanding. Over the years, I have accumulated more than a few.

A hiccup (named for the sound) is a sudden, brief involuntary diaphragm muscle spasm. As the diaphragm repeatedly contracts, the glottis (opening between your vocal cords) snaps shut, creating the hiccup sound. Irritation of the vagus nerve and chronic constipation can aggravate the condition.

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How Much Valerian for Anxiety & Sleep?

Valerian for insomnia

Valerian root is the most popular sedative and anti-anxiety herb in European herbal medicine. Ayurveda favors it, too. This remedy is a medium strength herb, which makes it quite suitable for self-care – its potent enough that you don’t need a high dose, but not so potent that you could accidentally take more than you needed.

Americans, though, are used to drugs for sleep and anxiety. We often expect valerian to work like a pharmaceutical sleeping pill- one little capsule will knock you flat until dawn. Valerian is very effective, and does not produce the hangover feeling common with drugs, but we often need to take a bit more than we might have thought at first.

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