Please don't get me wrong. It's imperative that we all exercise and eat right – that's common sense. These ayurvedic tips on weight loss, however, may not be common knowledge and can help take the excess weight off.
Here are some easy and practical tips that are not only good your overall health, but also for your waistline:
A UC San Francisco study found that “mindful eating” (where women simply paid attention to their food when they ate) as well as meditation for 30 minutes a day resulted in a decrease of more than a pound of belly fat as well as a significant decrease in their cortisol levels (stess hormone).
Meditation may seem challenging to some, but if you think about it as simply paying attention to where you are right now and breathing – that can be meditation. Meditation is NOT closing your eyes and trying to stop thoughts – that would drive anyone crazy! It's simple, just breathe and be right here – right now.
2. Deep and Full Breaths
A recent study conducted by Ruben Meerman and Andrew Brown of the University of New South Wales, shows that breathing is the NUMBER ONE mechanism for weight-loss. "Keeping the weight off simply requires that you put less back-in by eating than you've exhaled by breathing," said Brown.
- Kapalbhati is a breathing exercise. You simply sit up straight and push the air out through your mouth, making the shhh sound. At the same time as you exhale, also snap the belly muscles in and forcing out the air. Do this 30 times in a row.
3. Clean Your Tongue
"Why," do you ask, "does this work?" Well, if you think about it, our crackhead-like taste buds are on our tongue fiending for more salt, more sugar and more flavor. If our tongues are covered with a white chalky coating, it makes it VERY difficult to taste foods. This can lead to going heavy on the salt shaker and added sweeteners. Tongue scraping has been used for centuries in India to not only improve oral hygiene, but it's also thought of to have many other health benefits as well.
Place a tongue scraper (found in any health food store) or a spoon on your tongue as far back as comfortable and scrape toward the tip. Rinse then repeat until that yuckiness on your tongue is gone.
The National Institute of Health did a study concluding that abdominal massage reduces constipation and increases bowel movements. The studies on the benefits of massage are endless and one perk that is proven time and time again is weight loss. It improves blood circulation, lymphatic drainage, skin health and promotes major detox.
Ayurveda has a solution for anyone who can't get to a day spa – self-massage!
Warm a organic body oil and rub it everywhere from crown to toe nail.
Use more oil and start back at the top of the head for a scalp massage and make your way down, spending quality time on each area.
Ayurvedic massage is not all soft and tickly – it's vigorous strokes that gets things movin'!
Massage your belly in a clockwise motion to enhance digestion and elimination.
Ayurveda typically uses Sesame or Coconut oil on the body. This not a once a month thing – it's more like a daily routine.
5. Sweat it Out!
Your skin is the largest organ of detoxification. Heat causes the pores to enlarge and allows impurities to be released from the body through the sweat glands. Sweating also increases circulation and helps to lose excess water weight.
- After Massaging yourself with oil, jump into a steamy bath with salts and sweat.
Or use a sauna or steam room, but make sure you are replenishing with tons of H2O.
6. Make Lunch your Biggest Meal.
Ayurveda says that ones 'agni' (digestive fire) is burning strongest at around noon – lunchtime! Make your breakfast and dinner smaller meals with the largest meal for lunch, so it's more easily digested.
7. Rest up
An in-depth sleep study at Case Western Reserve University, followed 68,183 women for over 15 years. The results showed the women who slept for 5 hours or less per night were about a third more likely to gain weight of 30 pounds or more compared to those who got at least 7 hours per night.
Make your room as dark as possible at night, even a tiny light on your alarm clock can have effects on your sleep.
Take a warm salt bath with relaxing essential oils.
Keep computer, cellphone, television and all electronic stimulation to a minimum preferable 3 hours before bedtime.
Wake up early (at sunrise) and go to bed at around 9-10pm.
8. Get Giggly!
The Mayo Clinic said that laughing releases endorphins, increases blood flow and eases tension. If you haven't heard of the "Laughter Yoga" movement – you're missing out. Classes include laughing constantly until it actually becomes funny. People leave feeling happier, lighter and with their tummy muscles aching (fat burn!).
9. Drink Ginger Tea
Lots and lots of it. Ice cold water is thought to stagnate the digestive system, so if not ginger tea, then at least warm or hot water to rev up that digestive fire. Begin your day with a cup of ginger tea to kickstart your digestive juices and burn off calories.
These tips in combination with a good exercise routine and whole organic foods is really the key. Cheers to a healthier (and slimmer) you!