Ayurvedic Medicine

As people are seeking greater health and wellness in their lives, Ayurvedic Medicine is a growing trend in health care and lifestyle. But what exactly is Ayurvedic Medicine? When people ask this question, they often get a large range of answers. Or they have had one experience with Ayurveda, such as herbs or meditation or a new diet, and they assume that alone is Ayurveda. The reason for such a span of answers is that Ayurvedic Medicine is an entire system of health care, comprised of endless knowledge of the physical body, in all its intricacy, as well as knowledge of the mental, emotional, and spiritual aspects of each one of us. With origins in India, its principles are easily applied in any area of the world, using natural means to bring the body back into its unique and balanced state. It is holistic, whole system,health care.

Within this system of natural health care, there are thousands of modalities to utilize. Common ones include herbal remedies, particular yoga practices, oil massage, and purification techniques (“detoxing” done right). Yet these and other regimes are not used generically for all. Rather, they are carefully selected for an individual’s unique constitution and imbalances. Ayurvedic medicine does not treat generalized symptoms, it treats the particular imbalances that cause the disruptive symptoms. Ayurveda has a distinct means of assessment and works with a different approach to creating health in our bodies than the traditional western approach. Ayurveda recognizes that there are multiple ways in which one symptom (such as painful periods, insomnia, irritable digestion or elimination, depression, or others) may have come about. Thus, each individual needs individualized care to gently overcome his or her health problems.

Yet Ayurveda is so much more than an answer to your health problems…  It gives the gift of maintainingyour optimal health and attaining continued growth & fulfillment in body and mind. Ayurveda is a way of life, a way to greater health and longevity. This is why bits and pieces of Ayurveda always trickle into the lives of even those who intend for just a simple and natural fix to their ailments. Los Angeles and other areas of the country are catching onto this time-tested and effective system of health care and people are realizing they can feel better than ever.

Natural Herbal Remedies

Ayurveda provides a natural means to minimizing or removing many of our current health issues, such as diabetes, infertility, rheumatoid and osteo arthritis, and even the common cold. Of course, the best health care is one which prevents illness and injury. Ayurveda shines in prevention, as it gives simple and natural lifestyle guidelines that simply feel good, while increasing your immunity, decreasing toxin build-up, and replenishing your energy. It offers means to easy and sound sleep, proper digestion and elimination, and healthy purification. If ailments arise, herbs may be used as natural medicine. A carefully selected blend of herbs is generally more effective than a single herb. Arjuna, for instance, is wonderful for the heart, but will be best assimilated when joined with another strong herb and smaller doses of digestive aids such as ginger, cardamom, licorice or fennel. It does take time to reverse major or chronic health issues, but the results yield much longer lasting effects and without uncomfortable or hazardous side effects. Of course, Ayurveda will not replace your doctor’s prescriptions, but it can reverse or minimize your need for them.

Health maintenance and prevention of illness tips are sometimes thought of as “grandma’s recipes.” Try out a few of these over the course of a week and see if they work for you. These are simple but effective for some basic complaints.

  • For trouble falling asleep: Heat one cup of organic whole milk on the stove. Pour into a mug, add a pinch each of cardamom and cinnamon (nutmeg also, if you like). Sip just before bed. Also take a warm bath with sesame or olive oil in it, just be careful not to slip!
  • For bloating after meals: Make a potent fennel tea by adding 1 tsp of freshly ground fennel seeds to 4-6 ounces of hot water. Stir and let steep for a bit before sipping at the end of your meal. You can also steep the whole seeds in boiling water.
  • For early morning awakenings (when you wake up at 3-4 AM, wide awake): If you wake up hot or sweaty, try 1/4 cup of Aloe Juice (whole leaf, from the health food store not Trader Joe’s unfortunately) just before bed. If you wake up but you don’t feel hot in the nights, try 6 ounces of licorice root and fennel seed tea. Just buy the freshly ground powders at health food store and stir into hot water.

Ayurvedic Remedies

Plants hold great power in healing. Whether using natural Eastern or contemporary Western approaches to medicine, plants are the foundation for the efficacy of medications. Herbal medicines are often overlooked as a lesser potency than many western drugs. Fortunately, this is not the truth. The key to successful healing through herbs is to have the appropriate blend of herbs for whatever imbalances have led to the health issue. Three people with high blood pressure may all have different imbalances that caused their symptom. Hence, three different herbal remedies, along with lifestyle guidelines, may be recommended for success in reducing blood pressure. The same is true for treating women’s health concerns such as painful periods, menopause symptoms, or others. If you want to reverse a health issue, try this natural and lasting approach. And if you are currently in good health, remember to keep your health with the Ayurvedic lifestyle.

Healing with Reiki

Healing with Reiki: Learning Another Path to Health and Happiness

We all want greater health and happiness, and we’re continually learning about new and old ways of achieving this. Reiki is a form of healing and energy work that has been passed down from Dr. Mikao Usui from Japan and has retained it’s purity in lineage, effectiveness in healing the body, and creating greater happiness in the life. The Ki (same as Chi or Life Force) is transferred through the hands of the Reiki practitioner and into the receiving body. The practitioner is a conduit for the healing power of Nature (Consciousness), so it is nature that heals. The practitioner must have been attuned  through proper instruction and activation for the use of Reiki. It is more than simply laying the hands on the receiver. The consciousness of the practitioner is important, as well. The greater the consciousness, the more energy can easily stream through the practitioner and into the recipient. The receiver also plays a role, in that his or her body will “pull” the Reiki they require through the vehicle of the practitioner. Reiki symbols are used to enhance the healing, with Reiki II. These symbols are sacred and are given to the practitioner through another attunement and activation.

Reiki healers are conscious souls that we simply just want to be around. They typically have a glow about them, as they access Universal Energy and the higher powers of nature on a regular basis. When we are drawn to learn more about Reiki or to have a Reiki session, we are ready for more out of life, greater health and happiness. Getting onto a Reiki table and inviting the healing is the first step. The healing process begins in the session and continues into the life. Individuals will have different experiences of healing. Some will be very aware of energy movement, opening, or releasing. Others will have less conscious awareness of this, but the healing is still taking place. The proof is not in the experience on the table (although it is a soothing and peaceful experience), but rather in the life to come.

Reiki is powerful alone, yet it can also be done in combination with other treatments. Whether done with massage, Shirodhara or Abhyanga (Ayurvedic oil treatments), Reiki will only enhance healing. Other energy work can be combined with Reiki, as well, such as chakra balancing, intuitive healing, and the use of aromatherapy to work with your subtle energy fields. Utilizing Reiki during a Raindrop Therapy session is highly effective in working with aromas and touch to influence spinal alignment (scoliosis or general aches) while purifying the nervous system of viruses and emotional baggage. And it feels amazing… Whatever you choose, all of this work feels nurturing and nourishing, while it is purifying and strengthening. The sessions themselves are loving, but the effects truly have the most influence in the life afterward.

Reiki in Los Angeles

There a many Reiki practitioners in Los Angeles and throughout the country. You can choose to work with a Reiki II practitioner from a distance, or you can choose someone close to your home, so that you have the experience of being in his or her direct energy. Take the time to talk to Reiki students or clients, or to explore practitioners online, so that you’re excited about who it is you choose to see. There is likely a practitioner who will simply feelright to you. You may need to meet in person or talk on the phone (you can call to schedule or ask questions) before you have a sense that a practitioner is the right one for you. Simply choosing Reiki, with a qualified practitioner, is a healing step and will help to enlighten your life.

When asking about the qualifications of a practitioner, the lineage should always go back to Dr. Usui. When the lineage lines up, you can be assured that the practitioner was properly attuned to Reiki, and they can effectively stream Reiki through to you.

Chakras and Reiki

Reiki can be pulled from any area of your body, or directly through your chakras. We have chakras all over our bodies, but there are 7 primary chakras along our spine. These energy centers literally create our life. Each of the 7 chakras are like data bases for certain areas of our life, each one holding energetic blue prints for our physical, mental, emotional and spiritual health. For this reason, Reiki is often focused directly into the chakras. A Reiki practitioner may scan the chakras first, assessing which ones are in balance and which ones need more life force. Then he or she can focus the Reiki into the particular chakra in need. The recipient often feels a shift, subtle or sometimes dramatic, when the Reiki has realigned some of the energy. Reiki is wonderful as a one-time treatment, or can be optimized with regular sessions. You may find there are times when you need more Reiki than others. You can also become a Reiki practitioner yourself, and pull Reiki every day, for you or others. It takes healing to a new level and life simply becomes more beautiful by the day. To your health and happiness…

Wendy Arneill, RN, Ayurveda Practitioner, Reiki II Practitioner, Intuitive Healer

Healing through the Chakras

Intuitive healing through the chakras is most nourishing, nurturing and effective with your subtle (often unconscious) needs for healing. These needs may manifest in a lack of fulfillment in an area of your life, a frustration or depression regarding an area of your life, or may be a physical manifestation…such as difficulty sleeping, eating well, conceiving, loving, receiving, or even constipation, headaches, fatigue or more. Expand your life, love your body, live your life fully. Many blessings…

Emotional health

“The heart that loves is always young.” ~ Greek Proverb

We are in the Vata time of year… We need more sleep and time to reflect inwardly, as the days get shorter and nights get longer. We are natural beings and we thrive when we allow our natural rhythms to take their proper course. Yes, life is busy. But give yourself the gift of letting go of a few unnecessary obligations this month. Vata is responsible for communication, movement, enthusiasm, adaptability, our nervous system and relates closely to digestion and symptoms of anxiety or depressed feelings. To pacify Vata in your body, especially during this Vata time of year (now until mid-winter), bring a little more peace into your life. Breathe. Sleep. Eat slowly and eat warm foods. Seek an instructor of meditation to learn the process of EASY meditation. The only way to reap the rewards is to begin with today and tomorrow, and slowly but surely allow for a little more time, a little more peace. Allowing for a little down-time now will revive and strengthen you, so your future will be full of enthusiasm and vibrant energy. It is your duty to take care of yourself, which means allowing a little space in your busy schedule for peace.

A key component to reflecting inwardly is connecting to your heart. Love is more than just for relationship; it is for the self, or for any of the world around us…the ocean, the mountains, the family, the career, the animals, the body, friends, painting, or whatever it is that makes you feel like you’re on top of the world. If you have trouble connecting to your heart or the feeling of pure contentment within, and especially if you are defensive about trying to connect to these feelings, begin by asking yourself to let down your defensive walls. Ask for help, from a healing teacher or friend, to let you connect to this blocked emotional channel. Vulnerability will set in, as will the opportunity for unbounded love and adoration of your life. Love is cultivated from within, and love is what keeps us alive. Before the nights are much longer, begin to go within, and plant a seed of love that you water daily by acknowledging your own heart’s essence. Try to FEEL your heart, front and back, and be grateful for all it is and does. If you need help, contact any trusted healer, friend, or contact First Light Ayurveda. Embrace the love you are. Let it light up your life.

Healthy Longevity

True health is only obtained when you are fulfilled with yourself and your life. This does not mean you stop seeking more, as there is always more goodness to explore. Fulfillment comes when you know you are on the right path, in the right place, doing and feeling the right things. The body has been given health and now the mind and the heart feel the same balance. Contentment, which then opens the door to so many more possibilities, continually improving your experiences. As you age, life gets only better. This is the essence of Ayurveda, healthy longevity. For inquiries to get started, contact First Light Ayurveda. Enjoy…

Photo from Flickr.

Digestive Tea

For gentle purification and improving digestion, enjoyably, try this easy recipe:

1 tsp Fennel Seed powder
1/2 tsp Coriander Seed powder
1/4 tsp Cumin Seed powder

You may buy whole seeds and grind them at home, or you may buy the spices in powder form from a health food store. Be sure to get top quality spices, it makes all the difference. Go to your health food store and buy from the bulk section, rather than getting bottles that have been on the shelf of a grocery store for who knows how long. Smell them to sense the difference in freshness and potency and you’ll be a believer.

Boil 1 quart of water on the stove and add the spice blend above into a large thermos. Sip this throughout the day. Hot and room temperature is good, cold is not. You can make a large batch of this blend using the same proportions above (1 part fennel, 1/2 part coriander, 1/4 part cumin) and store in a glass jar for easy access to make this tea regularly. Digestion will ease and you’ll enjoy your food and body more, while feeling refreshed.