Dr Issac Mathais 30-acre healing facility on the outskirts of Bengaluru is a space where integrative medicine is practised. It has played host to visits from celebrities from all walks of life who come for various treatments: Prince Charles, Archbishop Desmond Tutu, and Rajnikanth, to name a few.
Holistic health is about looking at your body in totality, but Dr Mathai says it is also about taking into consideration the environment and community you live in. So eat local and seasonal and try and live in as clean and natural an environment as you can. If the coronavirus scare leads to better hygiene practices, all the better. Here, he takes us through easy lifestyle changes we can make and maintain.
1. Build your bodys immunity by kicking off the day with a concoction of turmeric, lime, honey, ginger (skip the honey and add cinnamon if you have diabetes). Avoid white sugar and sugary drinks; instead, use natural sweeteners like palm or coconut jaggery, pomegranate molasses and date syrup.
2. Go back to eating what your grandmother did, whether it is the variety of spices, grains, vegetables, and greens she used, or the methods of preparation. Remember, though, that we live a far less active life than she did, so eat only what your body needs. If you eat mindfully, your body will eat intuitively this practice can be cultivated over time.
3. Drink juices that contain the pulp. Pomegranate is especially good as it contains three times the amount of antioxidants compared to green tea or red wine (according to a Mayo Clinic article). Also try carrot, orange and ginger. (The combination of beetroot, orange, ginger, carrot in a 50:30:10:10 ratio was rated most acceptable on nine parameters, by a panel of judges the results of the study were published in the International Journal of Science and Research.)
4. Perform pranayama every day, preferably in the morning, and if possible in Nature. Begin with just breathing in and out mindfully, conscious of each breath. Then do the Anulom-Vilom (alternate nostril breathing) and the Bhramari (bee breath, that produces vibrations in the head). If a nostril is blocked, place the hand of the side that is blocked in the opposite armpit, and lie down on that armpit.
5. Give yourself a massage with medicated oils: Dhanwantharam thailam is soothing for the body, while Mahanarayana Thailam helps with inflammation and body pain. Ksheerabala Thailam for the head helps with headaches and migraine, and Sudha Bala Thailam again for the head calms nerves. If youre giving someone else a massage, your hand movements should be towards the heart.