Ayurvedic Rejuvenation for Health & Happiness
Who doesn’t like the idea of a fresh start? It’s an opportunity to clear out accumulated junk from the past, release stagnation, and rebuild a healthy foundation. This is exactly the idea behind Ayurvedic rejuvenation.
In Ayurveda, the most traditional way rejuvenation is done is after a cleanse. This makes sense, as Ayurvedic cleansing facilitates the removal of accumulated toxins and wastes, leaving behind a cleaner slate. Then, the cleansed tissues are given rejuvenation treatments in order to nourish and rebuild them in a healthy and robust way.
Doing a cleanse is always a blessing, and it can be especially helpful at the transition of seasons as well as during transitions in life. But even without a cleanse, it's important to make sure our bodies and minds are receiving the nourishment, rest, and replenishment they need on a more frequent basis.
Careful attention to rejuvenation plays an incredibly important role in preventing imbalance, as well as promoting wellness, vitality, and strength.
The Benefits of Ayurvedic Rejuvenation
According to traditional Ayurvedic texts, the benefits of rejuvenation therapy are many. The following list is just a sampling of ways that rejuvenation supports the body, mind, and spirit.1
- Promotes longevity
- Increases memory and intelligence
- Supports balanced health
- Maintains youthfulness
- Supports luster and a clear complexion
- Promotes strong and healthy sense organs
- Enhances vitality and radiance
Rejuvenating foods and lifestyle practices are said to work through a variety of mechanisms. These include supporting healthy immune function, promoting proper function of the blood and lymph, helping the body adapt to stress, promoting healthy natural aging, enhancing antioxidant action within the body, and supporting a healthy nervous system.2
How to Practice Rejuvenation in Your Daily Life
Rejuvenation can be found through various methods, including food, lifestyle practices, and herbs. Each of these can be incorporated on a daily basis to optimize and nourish one’s health and obtain the life-promoting benefits of rejuvenation.
In terms of rejuvenating foods, favor those foods and spices that have high antioxidant capacities and are known to kindle the digestive fire, build ojas (the essential vitality of the body), and support immunity.
Some foods known to build ojas specifically include ghee (clarified butter), dates, almonds, figs, organic milk, mung beans, sweet whole grains, and nutritive vegetables like greens and yams.
Spices that kindle the digestive fire and boost the immune system, including turmeric, ginger, fennel, saffron, cumin, and cardamom, also assist in the rejuvenation process.
The quality of our food, as well as the way we habitually eat, is just as important as what we eat.
As much as possible, choose fresh and seasonal foods, as these contain the highest levels of prana (life-giving energy). Choose organic foods whenever possible, as this will help you avoid toxins that have become all too common in our society.
Rejuvenating Lifestyle Habits
Activities that support rejuvenation can be added to your daily routine one by one, in a way that feels most practical for you.
First and foremost, healthy, adequate sleep is of utmost importance to allow the tissues to repair and renew. To promote quality sleep, maintain a consistent daily bedtime and waking time, massage the soles of your feet with warm oil before going to bed, and enjoy a warm, grounding Ashwagandha Latte before bedtime.
When you wake in the morning, a self-massage with warm oil can be nourishing and energizing, adding to the body’s ability to age gracefully. For a rejuvenating oil, consider Ashwagandha Bala Oil or Vata Massage Oil.
Grounding yoga and pranayama also help to rejuvenate the body, mind, and spirit. Consider poses such as twists, legs-up-the-wall, and gentle sun salutations. Rejuvenating breathing practices can include Nadi Shodhana (Alternate Nostril Breath), Bhramari (Humming Bee Breath), and Ujjayi (Breath of Victory).
I also recommend adopting a meditation practice or other reflective activity like journaling or walking in nature. This provides the space to step out of the dramas that are playing out in daily life and reconnect with our divine nature.
Finally, Ayurveda offers many nourishing herbs which greatly enhance the process of rejuvenation. These are two of Ayurveda's most common rejuvenating formulas:
Chyavanprash: Made in a base of Ayurvedic superfruit amalaki, Chyavanprash is a traditional jam that is packed full of antioxidants and vitamin C. Bringing together many Ayurvedic rejuvenative herbs—ashwagandha, shatavari, guduchi, punarnava, pippali, and more—it is said to have been created by an ancient sage to promote energy, vitality, youthfulness, and longevity.
This nourishing mixture is an excellent support for the immune system, especially for those dealing with a stressful lifestyle, as well as children and elders. Enjoying 1 to 2 teaspoons daily can bring replenishment and balance to the immune system, metabolism, respiratory system, nervous system, and musculoskeletal system.
Triphala: A combination of three powerful Ayurvedic herbs, triphala is most well-known for its ability to support regular elimination, which is key in rejuvenation as this regularity removes wastes and toxins. But its uses and benefits reach far beyond that.
Triphala's antioxidant and detoxifying effects nourish the body, allow the cells to naturally replenish themselves, and support a healthy immune and cardiovascular system. 3 To use triphala in a rejuvenative way, take ½ teaspoon of triphala powder combined with ½ teaspoon of ghee and ½ teaspoon of honey every morning.
By combining nourishing foods with restorative activities and replenishing herbs, you can rejuvenate your body and mind on a daily basis, bringing a fresh start to each new day.