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0 In Ayurveda/ Balance Restore Rejuvenate/ Life

3 Ways to Jump-start a Digital Detox

(Apologies for the weird formatting!  WordPress is not my friend today.  haha!)

Happy Fall!  Up here in the Pacific Northwest, the leaves are starting to change, the air is a lot crisper, and I’ve brought my sweaters out.  It’s glorious. 

The change in seasons has inspired a change in focus for my Ayurveda work and I’m excited to share the details with you!

You can read all about the changes on my FB page, but here it is in a nutshell:

As a busy corporate warrior myself, I find Ayurveda absolutely essential to maintaining balance and making wise choices about where to focus my fire power.
I am finding myself more and more drawn to working with powerhouse professionals who know they are capable of achieving more but need a little boost (and practical go-to skills) to quiet the noise, get focused, and learn how to triage in the workplace without spending all their social capitol (or putting their health at risk).

One of the best ways to jump start this work is with a Digital Detox.  

It’s time to take a stand and make your tech work for YOU instead of the other way around.

Here are 3 things you can do right now to free up brain space:

              1.  Turn off push notifications for all non-essential apps on your smartphone.  

              2.  Schedule at least one 15 min. break in your calendar.  (Mark the event as ‘private’ if you are concerned about push back.)  And then TAKE THOSE BREAKS.  Use them to meditate, breath, etc. 

             3.  Put your phone on silent when you know you’re not on-call.  Vibrate mode is still disruptive (not just to you but also your loved ones!) so I encourage my clients to put their phone on silent when not on-call.  You’ll be amazed at the brain space this frees up!

Keep an eye on your inbox for more tips, relevant articles, and challenges soon.  

(Spoiler Alert: I’m prepping a 5-Day Digital Detox Challenge for launch in the next few months!!)

I challenge you to reject the glorification of burnout.  If you’re ready for a new paradigm, get in touch with me asap.  www.katiemeyer.com/schedule

To your success,

0 In Ayurveda

Elderberries: Not Just for Insulting Invading Hordes

First off, who gets the reference in the title?  And if you get it, can you NOT think of Monty Python when someone mentions Elderberries?!  I know I can’t.  For those not in the know, please see this classic clip from Monty Python & The Holy Grail below:

Ok, now that that’s out of the way, let’s talk about Elderberries for real.  And how they can be a great tool in your anti-cold arsenal.

I can hear you saying it now though: ‘Katie, aren’t Elderberries from Northern Europe?  How can they possibly be Ayurvedic?”

That’s an excellent point/question and first, you’re correct.  Elderberries originate from Northern Europe but that doesn’t mean that they don’t have Ayurvedic properties.  In fact, EVERYTHING has Ayurvedic properties so we can view anything and everything from the lens of Ayurveda.  Remember, Ayurveda is simply a practice of bringing your doshic imbalances back into balance (to keep you healthy) so whatever works, right?

So, what’s so great about Elderberries?  In short, they’re cute little berries that pack quite a punch.  Quick summary:

Elderberries are high in antioxidants, specifically, polyphenols, carotenoids and flavonoids.  These all helps protect our cells from damage (self-imposed or environmental).  They’re also high in vitamins A, C and E.   All good things for fighting off colds and keeping you healthy.

Ayurvedically, they balance all three doshas.  (hint: this is good!)  More Ayurvedic nerdery here (courtesy of Blue Lotus Ayurveda):

“Effect on Dosha: VPK=
Taste: berry-sweet, sour, bitter/flower-slightly bitter, pungent
Energy: berry-neutral to cooling/ flower-cooling
Post Digestive Effect: berries-sweet/flowers-pungent

Tissues/Dhatus: plasma, blood, muscle, fat
Systems/Srotas: respiratory, immune, digestive, circulatory, urinary
Properties: antioxidant, immune tonic, astringent, expectorant, diaphoretic, digestive, carminative, relaxant.
Indications: coughs, colds, sore throat, tonsillitis, congestion, respiratory infections, asthma, fever, flu, gas, allergies, abdominal discomfort, inflammation, high cholesterol, poor eyesight.
Preparations: infusion, tincture, syrup, winter cordials, medicated wine, food preparation.

Precautions: None for flowers. According to the Botanical Safety Handbook* the unripe and raw fruit contains sambunigrin, which may cause nausea, vomiting or severe diarrhea. Avoid elderberries that are red in color. The fruit is commonly cooked to avoid digestive upset and possible toxicity or the fresh fruit. Sambucus nigra is the variety most commonly used in herbal medicine and is considered to be relatively safe, especially when cooked.”

So good, right?  And if you’d like to make your own Elderberry Syrup, check out the recipe below:

Homemade Elderberry Syrup (InstantPot)

(they say the spices are optional but if you to maximize Ayurvedic goodness, don’t leave them out!)

And, as always, I would never recommend forgoing flu shots or ignoring your doctor’s advice for what’s best for you and your family.  This recipe is a great supplement to all the other evidence-based measures you’re already deploying! <3

0 In Ayurveda/ Life

Happy Summer! Now, chill out.

Happy Summer to you and yours!   At least, I think it’s summer here in the Norther hemisphere?  Where I live, it’s been cold enough to merit fuzzy socks and flannel pajamas at night but I keep hoping that we get some warm weather here soon.  Although, who am I kidding?  As a predominantly Pitta person, I live for brisk chill days…the heat makes me crazy!

If you’re like me and need some relief from hot summer months, I’ve got some good information and recommendations for you here!   Grab yourself a cool drink and settle in…

Q: What is Pitta and why does it get (h)angry in the summer time?

A: Pitta is one of the three doshas (basic constitutions) and is made up of fire and water.  It’s responsible for transformation.  Think of it as the spark that lights the fire.  The catalyst.  It’s also responsible for digestion and the seat of Pitta is in the stomach.  

So, why do Pitta-predominant folks tend to (kinda) dread summer?  Well, we don’t need any help in the fire department.  We’re spicy enough on our own! 🙂  So, in order to have a cool, calm, chill summer, we need to keep our Pitta fire in check.  Give it something to gnaw on so it doesn’t take over in the form of acid reflux, angry outbursts (emotionally), skin rashes, etc.  

My personal recommendations:

  • If you’ve wanted to try a raw food diet (or incorporate more raw foods into your existing diet), summer is the perfect time to do that.  Just be careful.  Sometimes, raw food can cause indigestion because you’re not pre-digesting the food by cooking it.  But if you’ve got strong Pitta and great local produce, go raw!  So much easier to do in the summer than in the winter.
  • Switch up your moisturizer and just use coconut oil.  Coconut oil is great for summer months and Pitta-predominant folks because it’s lighter than the traditional moisturizers used in Ayurveda (like sesame or jojoba oil).  Add some lavender essential oil for a delightful pre-sleepy time moisturizer or a citrus essential oil for morning pep.
  • Nadi Shodhana:  Ok, I’m cheating here.  This breathing exercise is good any time of year but if you find yourself being more impatient in the summer heat, your Pitta likely needs some help chilling out.  Nadi Shodhana will do that right quick!  Learn how HERE.

Other resources:

What to Pack for a Balanced Vacation

Pitta Pacifying Diet 

The Best Pranayama for Your Dosha

Happy Summer! <3