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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Does Ghee Make Me Fat?

Aug 25, 2017

QUESTION FROM YOU
Hey Monica! I KNOW that ghee is one of your first recommendations to cure constipation but I am AFRAID to eat ghee. I know it is clarified butter and that just says cholesterol and weight-gain for me. You said that you won’t gain weight from ghee, etc. Why is that since it is butter? What about cholesterol? 

GREAT question and thank you for bringing this up. Certainly you are not the only person who wants to know, "Does ghee make me fat?"

Raise your hands if it has crossed your mind that eating ghee will make you gain weight. Look around the room, see? You're not alone. Leave your hands up if you are a vata. Ah-HAH, just as I thought. See, vatas always ask the, "Will it make me fat?!" question and the irony is that vatas are the dosha least likely to gain weight no matter what they eat. Vatas need extra fat to keep their structure built, yet they are the dosha most paranoid about eating them.

Let me get to the answer of this question because I know...

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What Are Doshas?

Aug 18, 2017
 

We are governed by the five great elements, right? Right! Space, air, fire, water, and earth. Well, from those five elements are created the three doshas. I even made a handy dandy little printout for a visual aid ;) Check out the video or transcripts below.

Vata is the energy of movement.

If you think about space and air, it's very, very subtle, and it moves very quickly, right? Space is the container where things are created. Space is also, in proper Ayurveda, it is ether. It is not just nothing. It is not a space of nothing. It's a subtle gas, and with a space and a subtle gas, there are things that can be created within that space, right? Just a little tip for yourselves. If you are ever in a space where you can't get any creativity or just like, "I don't know why I'm so blocked, I don't have any creative ideas," slow everything down. Things are only created when there's space to do so. 

Space and air create Vata Dosha. Air, you can think of like the wind, and...

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4 Ayurvedic Tips for an Unreliable Schedule

Mar 01, 2017
 

I got a question from Jessica! Jessica wants to know, "Monica B., what do we do when we have a wonky schedule sometimes? And what if it's just consistently wonky?"

Jessica is home with her two year old all day and then she works in a movie theater at night. Sometimes she works at night and sometimes she doesn't. Sometimes she works until 11:00 o'clock at night and sometimes at 1:00 in the morning, depending on the schedule, depending on what's showing at the theater. So everything is a little bit wonky.

I have 4 things things that I suggested to keep her balanced amidst the wonky schedule. You can use these too, to keep yourself healthy and in optimal flow with the day.

#1 Stick to the Ayurvedic daily routine the best you can.

On the days where Jessica doesn't have to work, she should be doing what is in accordance with the Ayurvedic daily routine. One small part of the Ayurvedic daily routine is to be in bed by 10:00 p.m. and awake before sunrise....

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