My wife Jackie is an Ayurvedic Specialist and author of this week’s blog.
Spring is my busiest time of year for supporting clients through cleanses. After a long winter of eating heavy comfort foods most people want to feel the quality of lightness and clarity in their body and mind again. The cleansing procedures of Ayurveda are called Panchakarma and they were originally created for Indian royalty to extend longevity. If you are feeling blocked, experiencing fatigue or heaviness, depression, poor digestion, insomnia, allergies, arthritis, or have a thick coating on your tongue, it’s a pretty good indication you have stored toxins or ama, as Ayurveda calls it.
Panchakarma is a process of cleansing the body’s deep tissues of these toxins that can accumulate over time due to over-eating, indigestion, polluted air, water, and food laced with man-made chemicals and pesticides. These Impurities are stored in the tissues and fat cells, where they can remain forever and wreak havoc unless periodically flushed out.
Each procedure is designed to go deep within, nourish the body and coax it into releasing its waste and toxicity. Panchakarma is a process that typically begins with diet modifications 7 to 10 days prior to coming for treatments. It is important in this preparation phase that a person’s activity shifts to become more internally-focused. This means letting go of day-to-day activities and turning your awareness inward. Ayurveda teaches that deep relaxation is needed in order for the person to let go and release the stored waste.
Every person will require a different approach and different treatments depending on what their constitution is, what their imbalances are, how old they are and many other factors. The 3+ hours of pleasant, relaxing therapies each day are designed to induce a profound state of tranquility. They consist of abhyanga, (think warm, nurturing, herbal oil massage) Shirodhara, (warm oil steadily flowing over the head) and swedana (herbalized steam bath.)
Here’s a link to a video produced by The California College of Ayurveda where I was trained. Ayurveda Video
A panchakarma program can be as short as a week or as long as a month and can cost anywhere between $250 – $650 per day depending on where you choose to go and the services offered. For some, this can heavy on the wallet and so they choose to do an at-home program. This year I’ve introduced The Weekend Cleanse Kit developed by Dr. Shekhar Annambhotla, a doctor of Ayurvedic medicine from India. The kit is an instructional program that teaches how to cleanse with a step by step DVD and 16-page booklet with instructions on how to prepare for the cleanse, how to perform self-massage, administer a basti (enema). It also includes recipes, herbs, spices, salts, oils and everything to complete the cleanse. If you are interested in purchasing the Weekend Cleanse Kit you can call me at 800-265-4213 and I can also answer any specific question you may have about the cleanse or the panchakarma programs that I offer in Ojai, California.
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