you want to do is take a nap. And even your thinking isn’t as clear and sharp as you’d like.
Even though you may be careful of what you put in your body, it’s inevitable in our society that you’ll be exposed to some external pollutants. According to Ayurveda, your digestive fire has to digest EVERYTHING that you’re exposed to: all of the sights, smells, sounds, tastes, and exposures through the skin. It also has to digest all the emotions and thoughts that arise from everything that you’re exposed to. This is a tall order, and most of us experience some toxic build-up that leads to blocked channels in the body and imbalances in our health.
Physical signs that these toxins have built up include decreased energy; a heavy coating on the tongue; foul body, breath, and stool odor; indigestion and excessive flatulence; body aches; foggy thinking; and sleepiness after eating.
Certainly, whatever treatment is recommended in Ayurveda, whether it’s for purification or for treating an imbalance, one should always follow the rule of balance first. This is a principle that is made clear by Charaka, one of the great ayurvedic healers of ancient times. The principle is that the physician should never create a new imbalance in order to repair or fix an imbalance. Whatever herbs we use, whatever purification methods we employ, we should never risk disturbing the doshas (mind/body operating principles) further. Nor do we create an imbalance in the quality and quantity of the dhatus (body tissues) or the quality, quantity and flow of the malas (body wastes). It’s also essential that any detox program support the health of the shrotas, the large and small channels that provide the path for toxins to leave the body, so that embedded impurities, once loosened by the purification program, Ayurveda flush out the toxins gently without disturbing the body’s own natural functioning.
There are three different types of toxins that can impact the physiology: ama,amavisha and garvisha. Ama is the most common type of toxin, and is the waste product of incomplete digestion. Sticky, white and foul-smelling, it forms in the digestive tract when the food you eat is not digested properly. Ama is usually caused by eating foods unsuitable for your body type or the season; by eating too much or too little; by eating before the previous meal is digested; by going to sleep on a full stomach; or by eating foods that are left over, processed, old or fermented. If ama continues to be produced over a long period of time, it can leave the digestive tract, travel to a weak area elsewhere in the body and settle there. Usually it blocks the shrotas (microcirculatory channels) and disrupts the flow of nutrients to the area as well as the body’s natural waste removal systems.
Usually ama develops when agni, the digestive fire, is either weak or irregular. By enhancing agni through dietary changes or by taking ayurvedic herbal supplements, the digestive system itself can burn off simple ama and clear it from the body.
Amavisha is a more reactive form of ama that forms when ama settles in one part of the body for a long time and mixes with the subdoshas, the dhatus or the malas there. This more toxic, reactive type of ama is more dangerous than the simple ama and must be dealt with differently during detoxification.
Garvisha is the third type of toxin, and unlike the other two, garvisha comes from outside the body. Included are environmental toxins such as chemicals, preservatives, poisons, air and water pollution, genetically engineered foods, synthetics and chemicals in clothing, synthetic drugs, chemicals in household cleansers, and heavy metals such as lead, arsenic and asbestos. Garvisha also includes toxins from spoiled foods.
In detoxification the shrotas play a major role, because the toxins have to leave the body through the large and small channels of the body. So it’s very important to maintain the proper health of the shrotas during all the stages of detox.
To understand how the shrotas need to be protected during detoxification, it’s important to note that there are three kinds of abnormalities or damage that can happen to the shrotas. The first is blockage of the shrotas with simple ama. This type of toxin is easy to remove through simple purification and detoxification processes. For this person, self-detoxification works quite well, because simple ama can be dissolved through diet, herbal formulas and at-home procedures.
The second type of abnormality involves the more toxic and reactive amavisha. In this situation, the shrotas or channels themselves become hardened and dried with toxins. If your shrotas were pipes, the amavisha would be rust, not only blocking the pipes but actually corroding them as well.
The rust in this analogy is a toxic mixture of ama, amavisha and ShleshakaKapha, which is the subdosha of Kapha concerned with maintaining proper fluid balance and lubrication of the body. When these three mix together, it causes an excess of moisture, an imbalance that in turn causes Vyana Vata (the subdosha of Vata concerned with circulation), to accelerate its drying effect, causing this toxic sludge to dry onto the channel walls. The channels become dry, inflexible, and narrow. There can also be blockage at the same time. This is the ayurvedic genesis of problems such as atherosclerosis
A one-week food-based home cleanse can be summed up in the following 5 easy steps inorder to remove ama (toxins) from the body:
- Start a kitchari diet.
Kitchari is an easy-to-make and easy-to-digest complete meal, made with rice, yellow mung dal, spices, clarified butter and vegetables. For one week, eat this for all of your meals, and you will see the cleansing and simultaneously nourishing effect that it has on your body.
- Avoid snacks.
This is the best way to reset your digestion, remove toxins, and even lose weight! But you don’t need to starve yourself. If you’re hungry, have warm, cooked foods that use the same ingredients as kitchari: rice porridge, steamed or stir-fried veggies, etc. Just remember that your digestion will work best if you give it at least five to six hours between meals.
- Sip hot water and detox tea in the morning and throughout the day.
This also helps reset the digestion and cleanse toxins. Staying well hydrated is key. If needed, also drink room temperature water to ensure you get plenty of fluids. Be sure to avoid ice, cold drinks and caffeine.
- Do a daily self-massage with warm oil.
You’ll find this is a great way to treat yourself and relax. In an Ayurvedic cleanse, a self-massage serves to facilitate the removal of built-up toxins so they can be eliminated as waste. The warm oil also calms and rejuvenates the nervous system.
- Take 2 capsules of Triphalaid at bedtime feel free to incorporate them into your long-term daily routine
Triphalaid (Digestive Health)
Triphalaid is a proprietary researched formulation at Herbalage research labs, which is the combination of the classical triphala according to Ayurvedic texts and other complementing herbs to ignite the effects. It is helpful in detoxifying, cleansing and eliminating the waste from colon and thus gives you a healthy routine life.
- Improves digestion and help absorb nutrition from the food we consume.
- Help strengthen the digestive system to digest occasional heavy foods.
- Works as laxative apart from being digestive and help eliminate waste in routine.
- Being the richest of source of natural vitamin C, it helps attain good eyesight, soft, supple and thick skin at every age.
- Full of calcium and other micronutrients and performs as anti-oxidant, helps strengthen bones, reducing tri-glycerides and manage blood pressure.
- Regular consumption slower downs the ageing process.
Tripahala (Amla+Haritaki+Vibhatki) balances tri-dosha and help attain good digestive health and being enriched with vitamin C, it helps a lot.
Saunf is digestive, optimizes metabolic rate and promote liver functions.
Sanay cleanses colon and eliminate waste.
Husk being laxative promotes routine elimination and cleansing.
This herbal remedy promotes rejuvenation of the tissues while also supporting healthy bowel movements.