5 Reasons to Include Oils in Your Diet and On Your Skin

Oct 19, 2017
 

You might be wondering why Ayurveda uses oils so much and talks about oils so much. Well, I've got five tips for you on why you it's a good idea to use oils on our insides and on our outsides. 

Below are 5 Reasons to Include Oils in Your Diet and On Your Skin

1) Use oils in food because it lubricates our insides. One of the ways we prevent disease is to avoid getting very dry and brittle because then the body breaks down. Oils help prevent that breakdown as it seeps into our deepest tissues. Oils get digested and they actually turn into nourishment for all of our seven tissues (or, seven dhatus in Ayurveda). They help keep the inside of the body nice and stretchy, pliable, smooth, and unctuous. Oils bring a nice heaviness too, because we want our bodies to stay warm, and supple, and flexible. 

If you are a vata person, you will need some extra oils in your diet. In fact, oil is vata's number one food because vatas...

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5 Simple Ways to Overcome Overwhelm

Oct 11, 2017
 

*warning! When I filmed this, I was feeling overwhelmed myself, hence, the quick entry into my crazy breathing. haha!*

Transcription below
Have you ever been in a situation where you're humming along, feeling really good, taking on projects, and then all of a sudden, *WHAM!*

You're hit with this overwhelm of, "Oh my gosh. I just said yes to all these things. I have so much other stuff that I have to do. And now I'm kind of paralyzed in not knowing what to do first, or how to get out from under this. I feel so panicked that I feel like I want to move really fast, but I actually feel stricken, like I can't move at all."

I've got 5 tips that can help you overcome that feeling of overwhelm.

The fix starts with our breath and our mind because, really, we're not physically sitting underneath a pile of overwhelming stuff. Our mind is going and going and going, and telling us, "Oh my gosh. We have so much to do!" But the pile is not physically there so we...

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Oil-pulling, you ask?

Oct 09, 2017

 

Oil-pulling is getting all kinds of attention and several folks ping'ed me to find out what the dealio is. Unless the info comes from a trusted Ayurvedic source, it can be hard to know what to believe.

I'll make oil pulling simple and trusted.

There are two daily practices in Ayurveda to help nourish and purify the mouth:

1) Gandusa (filling the mouth with oil and holding it) 

2) Kavalagraha (swishing oil slowly between the teeth and gargling = oil-pulling). The ancient texts call for sesame oil, but you can also use ghee or coconut oil for high pitta types. When I searched online, all the recommendations I found call for coconut oil (from non-Ayurvedic sites)...and that worries me because it might not be the best for everyone. 

Since I was concerned about wrong messaging and also certain that sesame is the oil of choice (I like to worry and be right = vata-pitta), I emailed my dear trusted teacher to be sure:

My dear trusted teacher (I can't...

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8 Simple Ways to Get Rid of Toxins

Oct 04, 2017
 

Toxins are created by old food but not solely food. As with all things in Ayurveda, emotions, stressors, lifestyle and environment (all connected) also play a huge role in how we digest. Digestion is food, yes. But digestion also includes all information we absorb with the five senses, taste being only one of them. When doshas are imbalanced due to lifestyle, diet, negative emotions, etc., agni’s function becomes weakened or disturbed and it leaves undigested food behind.

This undigested food turns into ama (AH-muh), which is a toxic, sticky, cloudy and smelly substance that can spread from the gastrointestinal tract to other parts of the body. From there it can lodge itself into crevices causing clogs in channels, blood vessels and cell membranes. Yum!

It sounds complicated and difficult to get ama, but it’s kind of easy if we’re not paying attention. How many times have we eaten on the go, while working, during an intense conversation, or while nervous? How...

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3 Ayurvedic Secrets to Achieving Optimal Digestion

Sep 27, 2017
 

Let's kick this off first by understanding that agni is our digestive fire. A properly functioning digestive fire is super important because if our digestive fire doesn't function right (too hot, too low, too variable), it can create imbalance in our bodies and minds very easily. In fact, it is said in Ayurveda, 90% of all disease is caused by malfunctioning agni.

Allow me to tell you a story about what agni is and what it does.

Agni is a little fire that burns behind our belly button. It rises and sets with the sun. When we wake up in the morning, Agni is quite small, it's just waking up like we are (it's got its little outstretched arms and it's yawning and it is getting ready for the day). 

For breakfast, it's important to have just a little something to eat. Think about when a fire is small, like a little matchstick. Would you put a log on it? No, because the fire would go out. Would you dump a bunch water on it? No, the fire would go out. It is best to have...

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6 Simple Tips to Transition into Vata Season {Fall}

Sep 22, 2017

Photo by Alex Geerts on Unsplash

And, all of a sudden it's chilly outside! The wind changed, the lighting has changed, the air is less humid. We are entering vata season and right quick. Note: If it hasn't happened where you live just yet, stay mindful. The weather will change pretty rapidly (like the wind!) when it's time. 

How (and why) to transition properly from summer into fall.

Summer is pitta season, which is ruled by the elements fire and water. In summer we favor cooling fruits and vegetables and choose exercise that will cool us down.

Fall and early winter is vata season, which is ruled by the elements space (ether) and air. The energy of fall and winter is completely different than summer and so, our diet and lifestyle needs to adjust accordingly. The change of seasons is when we are most likely to get sick and it's important to make a nice transition from one to the other.

Transition into vata season with these 6 simple practices.

...
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The Secret to Making Ayurvedic Family Meals

Sep 12, 2017
 

QUESTION FROM YOU!

Monica B, I don't know how to make an Ayurvedic meal for my entire family when we all have different doshas. I'm so confused!

Many of you have confusion around this and I think you will be happily surprised with the answer. 

How to make Ayurvedic meals for a family?

Here's the secret that will ease your mind. You don't. You don't make meals considering everyone's unique doshas. You make one meal that includes all six tastes so that each person can build their plate differently according to their doshas.

The six tastes and a few examples of each are:
Sweet
- carbs/grains, root vegetables, meats, milk, butter, oils, sweet fruits
Sour - pickles, fermented foods, sour cheeses, sour cream, yogurt, citrus fruits
Salty - salts like himalayan, sea, black
Pungent - black pepper, ginger, garlic, onion, sriracha, wasabi, chili flakes, hing, cumin
Bitter - coffee, black tea, green leafy veggies, bitter chocolate
Astringent - chickpeas,...

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What Exactly is Ayurveda?

Sep 08, 2017
 

I created this video to answer the question, "What is Ayurveda?" to give the newbies a broad idea of what it's all about.

When I started heymonicab.com in 2008, people asked me what my new blog was about and I would say, "Um, Ayurveda...have you heard of it?" {crickets} Nobody had a clue what I was talking about. But now I say, "I teach Ayurveda! Have you heard of it?" They say, "Yes! I've heard of it...but that's about it." YAY! Progress.

This is where I come in. If ya'll are able to recognize the word 'Ayurveda' now, you're ready for more information. 

Check out the video or transcripts below. XO!

How many of you out there have seen the word Ayurveda? How many of you know how to say it? Raise your hands if you've seen the word, but you're not really sure what it means. Excellent, that's why I'm here. I've been teaching about Ayurveda since 2008 on my blog, and I thought it would be important now to come back to basics a little bit, since there is...

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Freedom In Starting Over

Sep 07, 2017

Notice anything missing? Like my entire blog!?

Learned this week: Don't be afraid to tear it down and start over. 

It's 9.5 years old and long overdue for a makeover, so I finally decided to tackle the project. YAY great fun! And so friggin' daunting. There were 565 posts and felt like such a heavy load to move, adjust, fix, and weed through.

For years now I've felt like the amount of content was holding me back and weighing me down. I didn't even want to add to it anymore. I knew there was old crap in there. I knew stuff I'd written would make me want to hide my eyes. And therefore, I was afraid to go there.

Then I randomly came upon an article from Richard Branson that said, "Sometimes you need to tear it down and start over."

*YES!! TRUTH!*

The words struck my heart like a glitter bullet and I took those 565 posts, archived 528 of them was down to 37. HOLY LIGHTNESS!! SO AMAZING!! FREE!! I can organize 37 posts!!...

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Ayurveda | Lunch Ideas for Kids

Sep 02, 2017

*NEW* Check out the full video here: Ayurveda for Kids, School Lunch Ideas.

Raise your hands, who has kids?

1, 2, 3...good! At least 3 of you do so this is good to share and even if you don't have le kiddos, you can use this for yourself!

Anyone struggle coming up with new and healthy ideas for the kids lunches?

*me raising my own hand!* OH! ME!

When my daughter started kindergarten, it was a new game making her lunches every day. Without a plan, I knew I'd be harried and absent-minded when trying to cobble together a good lunch.

So I said to myself,

"Girl! Get it together and just write it all down."

So I did! I wrote down a bunch of lunch and snack ideas on a piece of paper and stuck it to the inside of my cupboard.

Then I thought, "Hey I could make this pretty and my Ayurvedic peeps might love this too!"

A gift from me to you, please enjoy this list of lunch ideas for kids.

 

HINT: Most of these are taken from dinner the night before so these...

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