May Newsletter 2016

Thanks to everyone for all your good wishes.

This Newsletter was written in England going through a difficult time in my life and I hope to pass on some of the things that helped me stay calm and strong.

YOGA AND MEDITATION

My yoga and meditation practice has helped me deal so much better with my Dads death.

Helping my Mam, staying calm and focused. I began every morning (after a cup of tea) with a yoga routine. Every afternoon or evening between visits to the hospital or visits from family and friends (more tea!)I would put on my Dr Swami Saraswatis yoga nidra CD that I gave to Mam and dad a couple of years ago. My Mam aand I would lie down and relax and sometimes sleep. I am glad I was there and although it was a difficult time it was lovely to see family and friends some of whom I haven't seen since I was a girl.

I woke one morning to a thick carpet of snow, put on my Dads woolly hat and slip on snow chains on my boots and lots of layers of clothes and went for my usual walk down Fairy Dell.

Walking is something my Dad and I both love and it was magical.

I am also very glad to be home....

FOOD FOR STRESSFUL TIMES

Ayurveda believes food effects the body and mind. Stress and anxiety are Vata in nature. Effected by the elements of air and space. If this doesn't make sense to you I'm sure the recommendations will.

In times of stress food should be nourishing, warm, oily. The best foods to reduce a Vata imbalance are sweet, sour and salty.

Porridge cooked with oats is a warming nutritious breakfast, add honey, banana, apples, cinnamon if you wish. Oats are used in Herbal Medicine as a gentle tonic for the nervous system.

I cooked alot of soups and vegetable stews with lots of sweet root vegetables such as carrots, turnip and beetroot. Red lentils and beans were added for iron and protein my Mam tried Dhal for the first time and really enjoyed it, although I didn't add any spices at home I would add cumin, turmeric and black pepper. The soups could be heated up quickly when we returned from the hospital and lasted a couple of days.

My Mam had been eaten a lot of tinned and frozen foods but she enjoyed getting into baking her own bread and making her lovely cakes, which were ready with a cup of tea for any visitors. I don't think my Mams cakes would qualify for a strictly Vata diet but they were sweet, nourishing with lots of butter and made with love.

Avoid alcohol, coffee and processed food.

HERBS FOR STRESSFUL TIMES

I felt calm and centred and slept well but here is a list of herbs which will help you through difficult times.

VALERIAN helps calm busy overactive minds and can be found in any health food store. It will also help with sleep.. Occasionally it can cause symtoms to worsen.

SCULLCAP is a less well known herb with similar properties.

A simple but powerful Ayurvedic Tea to help sleep and dull and calm the mind.

Warm a small cup of organic unhomogenised milk. I get mine from Coles   Pauls Brand, and add to it a teaspoon of nutmeg and honey to taste.

Longer lasting gentle tonic herbs that can be taken for many months.

OATS As simple as having porridge for breakfast.

WITHANIA A special Ayurvedic Herb that is now becoming popular in the west and can be found in most Health Food Stores. This nourishes the nervous system and brings strength and calm.

Finally I have missed you all and am looking forward to teaching again.

I am running a Retreat in August. I have found a fantastic house with huge decks looking over pittwater. More information to follow.