Ayurveda, while being closely tied to yoga, is a wellness whole-body concept that incorporates movement, diet, and spiritual connection.

For a Westerner, adding three simple lifestyle changes could have a big difference on your health and the way you feel day to day. While I have talked earlier about doshas, the state of the body at any given time and their imbalances, these tips I’m about to give are fine for all doshas so if you don’t know yours, you’re still able to do them. (If you’d like to learn what your dosha is, just contact me at romebodywork@gmail.com)

Tip 1 – When you wake up in the morning, before you do anything else at all, do a tongue scraping and teeth brush. Many people have been told to drink a glass of water first thing, but here’s why Ayurveda is a little different in that aspect. As you sleep, your body is purging a lot of waste and buildup. When you drink water first thing, you put those impurities that have gathered on the teeth, tongue and gums back into the body. By brushing, or scraping the tongue and cleaning the teeth firstly, you’re getting rid of that.

Tip 2 – Then you can have your water, but have it be room temperature or warm. Warm water or room temperature body is easier on the system, aids in better digestion, and puts the body in a state of easier hydration. Cold water, while most prefer it, can shock the system and alters digestion.

Tip 3 – At night, do an oil pull right before bed. One of the last things that you can do to help your body stay balanced and well is to swish a teaspoon of oil (coconut oil and sesame oil do well for this, but any will do) in the mouth. You need to be careful not to use too much because the oil will trap buildup and will increase saliva so that just a small amount will double in size. Swish for a few minutes and then spit it out and rest for the night. Oil pulling is good for the teeth and gums and aids in a cleaner mouth, you’ll notice in after a few days that your morning teeth, gums, and breath are better than ever.

These are just a few ways of using Ayurveda to help in your life. There is so much more to it, but these three items anyone can do. Try it and see if you’re able to notice a difference!

Namaste, Rome. I love you. You are my community, my clients, and my path.

Tina Samuels, a native of Rome, is an Ayurveda and shiatsu bodywork therapist and certified registered yoga teacher. Readers can contact her at www.romebodywork.abmp.com/

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