December 2010 Archives

Happy New Year from Sydney, Australia!

Image by Leorex via Flickr

Most New Year Resolutions last only six weeks. That's largely because we set the bar too high and simply don't have the time or energy to do what we optimistically resolved. Here are some Ayurvedic New year resolutions that take only a few minutes a day while potentially adding years to your life.

1. Floss every day~2 min
 Many Boomers did not grow up flossing and it can take a while to incorporate a new habit. Flossing doesn't only protect your teeth and gums. It also protects your heart, which is vulnerable to inflammation anywhere in your body, including your gums. So brush, floss and rinse with tea-tree oil.

2. Scrape your tongue each morning~1 min
Invest in a tongue scraper and scrape your tongue each morning to prevent bad breath and protect your teeth, gums and heart. Get tongue scraper here. 

3. Daily breast massage for women, weekly prostate massage for men~2 min
Your breasts need daily attention just as your teeth do. Daily breast massage may be helpful in preventing breast cancer. Massage in circles, bottom, middle, top, outer margins. For tender breasts use coconut oil, for fibrocystic concerns use castor oil. Almond oil is also good.
Men, to help prevent prostrate concerns, massage very gently using a rubber glove or finger cot, applying castor oil to your prostate.

4. A hundred Kegels for sexual and reproductive health~5 minutes
A hundred Kegels a day supports sexual and reproductive health, helping prevent prostate troubles, premature ejaculation, prolapses  and stress incontinence. Not much time to spend for great results!

5 .Ten full yogic breaths a day~5 minutes
Especially valuable for those with asthma or depression, taking ten full yogic breaths a day can help retrain us to breathe more completely. For instructions

6. Pause~30 seconds
Take a moment to pause--before you get on your bike, before you turn on the ignition, before you walk through the door, before you turn on the computer....pause, do nothing, take thirty seconds of mindfulness.

7. Pray before you eat~1 minute
Praying before eating introduces a grateful and mindful space in which food will nourish you more deeply. Use Alakananda Ma's prayer or the prayer of your choice. Ma's prayer:
May the Earth be blessed that bore this food
And may they prosper who grew it!
May the hands be blessed that cooked this meal
May all grow strong who eat it!
May the hearts and wills of humankind be moved
To feed the hungry of the world
And may all come to eat the bread of life
From Wisdom's table!

8. Count your blessings
If you're reading this, you are one of the most fortunate of people. You have both eyesight and literacy. Millions don't. And you have internet access! And contact with Ayurveda and dharma. How many more gifts and blessings does this moment afford?  Gratitude is a key to health, happiness and longevity.
Related articles

Pumpkin and Bean soup.jpg

This soup affords us the cancer-fighting carotenoids of pumpkin,the blood sugar and cholesterol-lowering benefits of fibre and amazing antioxidant flavonoids of sage. If you smoke or are exposed to cigarette smoke, eat plenty of pumpkin for the carotenoids that help prevent lung cancer.
Recipe adapted from Italian Vegetarian Cooking by Emmanuela Stucchi, Pavilion Books, London.

2 cups dried cannelini beans (original recipe calls for borlotti beans, which we couldn't source)
1 pie pumpkin (about 2 lb) seeded, peeled and cubed
4-5 red potatoes, cubed (we never peel potatoes as the iron is in the peel)
Salt and pepper to taste
1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil

3 garlic cloves, chopped
10 fresh sage leaves
1 celery stalk, sliced

Soak beans overnight, rinse and drain in morning. Cook in pressure cooker for one hour. Take off pressure, add pumpkin and potatoes and cook for a couple of hours, until very tender. Mash the potatoes a bit with a fork to thicken the soup. Add salt and pepper to taste. Meanwhile, fry the garlic, celery and sage in olive oil until they turn golden. Add to the soup and stir in well.
Sage adds agni kindling properties to this recipe.

Related articles

Here is a great winter soup, warming and grounding, it has a borscht-like colour. The combination of beta carotene and betain, along with ginger, helps ward off colds and 'flu.

Garden Beets 1.jpg

1 bunch garden beets, washed and cubed
2 carrots, sliced
3 cloves garlic, chopped
1 Tbsp olive oil
2" piece of ginger, finely chopped
6 cups boiling water or vegetable broth
1 can red kidney beans
2 Tbsp balsamic vinegar
Fresh dill, finely chopped
Salt and pepper

Heat oil in heavy bottomed pan, add garlic and ginger and cook until browned. Now add beets and carrots, cook for 5 minutes and add boiling water or stock. Cook until vegetables are fork tender. Process in blender or food processor. Now add the kidney beans, vinegar, salt and pepper and cook a few more minutes to combine flavours. Garnish with dill and if desired add a dollop of yogurt.

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This page is an archive of entries from December 2010 listed from newest to oldest.

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