Whether you are susceptible to colds, flu, suffer from low immunity and/or other illnesses popping allopathic pills may not the be your best bet for a long-term solution for your health, well-being and your immune system. These natural ayurvedic remedies might just be what you need.
Here are some key ancient Ayurvedic practices to boost your immunity, keep viral infections at bay and fight off monsoon-related diseases.
Burning dry neem leaves may be more effective that coils and electric repellants
Fumigate your home every evening with the smoke of dried neem leaves to keep mosquitoes at bay. All you need are a bunch of neem leaves from a local source.
Leave the stack of leaves out in the sun to fry for a few days. Once they have dried burn them in the house till all the fumes reach every corner to kill all the mosquitoes.
Oil baths can help keep skin infections at bay and your immunity up
Give yourself a hot water oil bath at least once a week. Use an equal proportion of sesame oil and neem oil in equal portions.
Use this combination on yourself to massage your body and wait for 20 minutes before taking a hot water bath. Not only will this keep skin infections at bay but also boost your immunity by increasing blood circulation across your body.
Give yourself a daily Ayurvedic self-massage
While regular massages are often done for mostly recreation and relaxation. A massage combined with aromatherapy is designed to give effects similar to abhyanga. Abhyanga is the Ayurvedic self-massage oil that you can use on yourself. The daily self-care ritual, cleanse your body from toxins, relive your mind from stress and rejuvenate your entire body, boost your immunity.
The herbal medicine in the oil enters your body through the pores of your skin and is absorbed into your bloodstream through your blood vessels. That’s why lightly heated Ayurvedic oils applied over areas in your body with joint issues, such as your knees, get absorbed and act quickly. Here’s a detailed explanation of how you can go about giving yourself an abhyanga massage.
Keep your Agni (digestive fires) strong
Your digestive fire or digestive capacity (agni) is quintessential for boosting your immune system. The well being of your immune system depends on the power of our agni to assimilate, digest and absorb nutrients in our body. Any disturbance or imbalance in our metabolism can compromise the immune system’s response to our natural resistance mechanism
Our agni is greatly affected by the by what we eat during the day. So excess junk food has quite a detrimental effect on our immune system because of the negative effect it has on our gut. It also helps to sip hot water and ginger tea through the day to help keep our gut in good shape and our immunity boosted.
Practice the ancient art Nadisuddhi Pranayama (channel cleaning breath/alternate nostril breathing)
Pranayama’s key role in the Ayurveda is to clear your body and mind, but in doing so it also pumps a fresh dose of oxygen into your system. Oxygen plays a vital role in improving the functioning of your brain and also the strengthening of your immune system.
Keep your right nostril closed with your thumb and breathe in from the left one. Then hold both your nostrils closed for a couple of seconds before you open your right nostril and keep the left one closed while breathing out from it. Repeat the process, but this time begin with your right nostril that is already open.
Dos and dont’s regarding your dietary habits are the key to keeping your immunity boosted all year round:
- Staying hydrated is a must during the monsoon to keep metabolism strong and one must drink only warm water.
- Cold water or chilled beverages are to be avoided completely.
- Warming soups with heating spices like ginger are excellent for this season.
- Salads and uncooked foods should not be consumed as they may contain germs (even when washed) and cause digestive issues.
- It is a good idea to forego curds, red meat and any foodstuff which takes a longer time to digest during the monsoon. One may have buttermilk instead of curds.
- Drink a glass of lightly warm water mixed with a pinch each of long pepper powder and rock salt to stoke the digestive fire. This will help keep your digestion functioning well.
- Do not sleep in the daytime especially after a meal as that slows down your metabolism.
- Herbal teas made with herbs like tulsi and spices are also ideal for the digestive system.
- Use plenty of hot carminative spices like ginger, garlic, turmeric, pepper, fenugreek, asafetida, cumin, etc. in your diet.
- Use some of the several Ayurvedic medicinal herbs that boost your immunity. Garlic, Echinacea, ginseng, ginger, turmeric, ginkgo biloba, olive leaf, astragalus root, amla, many of which will increase your white blood count and help your body defend itself against invaders.
- Don’t skip a daily dose of yoga and meditation. The positive effect of it on your immune system adds up to a lot over time and keeps your immunity boosted through any season.