Learning about Ayurveda has changed my life. I know that’s a huge statement, but it’s true. I feel healthier, I’m much more grounded mentally and most importantly I know what to do when I feel out of balance. All of these things have become even more important to me since becoming a fulltime traveler as it’s so easy to go out of balance. Are you interested in learning more about how Ayurveda can help you? Keep reading for my beginners guide to Ayurveda for travelers.
What is Ayurveda?
Ayurveda is the Sister Science of Yoga also known as Indian Medicine or Life Science. It is an ancient science and it has stood the test of time. Unlike modern medicine Ayurveda isn;t based on constantly changing research and data. It is part science part religion and part philosophy that was developed in India by the ancient Rishis (or seers of truth).
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In Ayurveda everything is made up of the three Doshas: Vata (Space and Air), Pitta (Fire and Water) and Kapha (Earth and Water). Each person has a dominant dosha known as their Prakriti. This is what you were at birth. But our Prakriti often goes out of balance and this is known as a Vikriti. In Ayurveda, you are always trying to balance the doshas to keep the body and mind in good health.
If you want to find out your Prakriti and Vikriti I recommend signing up for Sister science a FREE online course. In module 1 you will take the tests to find these out.
What steps can you take to bring Ayurveda into your life?
When you first start to study Ayurveda it can be very overwhelming. What I found helpful was to not get carried away with the ‘rules’ ie what you can and can’t eat. Instead, focus on the following to help you get started slowly.
Everything has energy including your food. When you are thinking of eating something, think about the energy of that food and how putting it into your body is going to affect it.
For example – It’s a hot and humid day and you are feeling agitated with the heat. Eating a salad would have a cooling effect, eating a spicy curry would have a warming effect. If you are already feeling hot and agitated would it be better to eat a cooling salad or a heating curry? When you start to break everything down like these things begin to make more sense.
I always practice mindful eating now. Each time I eat I try to be present. I put away my phone, turn off the TV, I look at what I am eating and I enjoy eating it. If when I’m looking at my food I don’t feel the joy. Then I don’t eat it!
It’s also important not to eat with guilt. Remember when we eat we are putting energy into our body. If you want to eat an ice cream eat an ice cream! Enjoy it and put that happy energy into your body, if you are eating with guilt you are absorbing that energy.
This is one of my favorite things in Ayurveda! Before Ayurveda, my daily self-care was minimal, especially as a backpacker. I would roll out of bed and get a shower and that was it! Having a morning routine is important in Ayurveda and although it may seem difficult to do this living out of a backpack it’s not impossible!
Here is my morning routine:
Wake up at 5:30
Drink a glass of room temperature water
Go to the bathroom
Wash my face
Brush my teeth
Oil massage with almond oil
Read a chapter of a spiritual book
Pranayama and Meditation (30 mins)
Oil Pulling with coconut oil
Now almost all of the above can be done in a dorm room of a hostel. You can easily meditate in your bed sat up. And you can just skip the yoga if you don’t have space.
Where can I learn more?
Easy, the Yoga Veda Institute where I studied offer a FREE online course. It was what opened me up to Ayurveda and I 100% recommend it to everyone…and its FREE so you have nothing to lose!
Of if you are already convinced Ayurveda is for you then you can sign up for an Ayurveda and Nutrition Course BY DONATION! That’s right it’s a course where you can decide how much you pay. It’s one of the many things that I love about the Yoga Veda Institute!
I hope this has been informative and helped you to understand a little about Ayurveda. It’s a huge thing to understand as Ayurveda is everything! Any comments or feedback is always welcome!