Home Remedies for Winter Ailments

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The Art of Ancient Healing by Mita Mistry

Over eating is very common during the cold dreary winter months when many of us reach out for rich, scrumptious warming food to comfort and lift our spirits. This is ok. For some of us though, our relationship with food is always like this. Overeating is most often the result of emotional factors such as sadness, anxiety, frustration and low self-esteem to name a few.

A very effective way to keep emotions balanced is to practice deep breathing and meditation. By focusing our mind, we can gain control over our emotions and feel nourished and contentment from within rather than seeking short term satisfaction from high calorie foods and lets face it that chocolate binging session was great but was it worth the guilt?

When you feel a binge session coming on, try sipping herbal tea such as peppermint or ginger or chewing liquorice. Both are ayurvedic remedies for curbing appetite.

Sadly, it is also the time of year when pathogens strike leaving many of us suffering from the dreaded sore throat. One of the oldest, simplest remedies is to gargle hot salty water. Ayurveda recommends the addition of ½ teaspoon of Turmeric to hot salty water. Gargle morning and evening. Turmeric is an anti-inflammatory and is thought to stimulate the body’s natural production of cortisone from the adrenal glands, which will generally help the body to self-heal. Turmeric milk is also very effective before bedtime, boil a cup of milk add ½ teaspoon of turmeric.

Another simple remedy is sipping ginger tea with cinnamon and honey; this can be drunk up to three times a day. With the exception of turmeric milk, try and avoid foods that aggravate sore throats such as most dairy products especially cheese and yoghurt.

Avoid cold foods such as ice cream or bananas and try to eat warmer spicier foods as these help to disperse pathogens from our lungs, helping to boost immunity.

Joint pains can also be aggravated during the winter season, especially among the elderly. Cold and damp can slow down the flow of energy causing blockages and pain. There are some simple things we can all do to help.

Firstly, increase the intake of foods that are easy to digest. Vegetables such as carrots and cucumber for example have diuretic properties helping our body to eliminate waste products, preventing blockages from toxin build up. Sipping a concoction of warm water with 1 teaspoon of honey and 2 teaspoons of lemon juice first thing in the morning and before bedtime can also help to keep energy moving around joints reduce toxic build up.

You can also try applying a homemade ayurvedic ointment to painful inflamed areas. Mix 1 teaspoon of honey and 1 teaspoon of cinnamon powder to two teaspoons of water. Apply a thick layer to the affected area and leave to dry. This remedy can be used for as long as required.

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