Supporting physical and emotional imbalances in the body
This year marks five years since the launch of my company Wild Nutrition; a brand that was birthed from a burning desire to bring excellent, natural supplements into a dominantly synthetic market. Yet despite this unwavering passion, over these last five years I have also held hands with exhaustion and soul-searching moments.
Like many women I speak to and work with, I have been experienced “the juggle”. As a committed therapist and business woman, adoring mother of three and wife, the juggle of caring for and nurturing others whilst finding tenderness for myself has not always been seamless.
So it was with an open and grateful heart that I embraced the opportunity to stay at the Ayurveda Sonnhof Spa in Austria to experience their Panchakarma treatment.
Panchakarma is a gentle, yet profound purification therapy to reduce the physical and emotional imbalances in the body. By restoring balance and well-being it is said to be the most powerful tool to eliminate those elements of our self that no longer serve us.
The Wisdom of Ayurveda
The ancient practice of Ayurveda teaches us that there is an intricate connection between our emotions and what is happening in our physical body and, specifically, a deep relationship between our emotions and thoughts—both conscious and unconscious—and our digestion.
The energy required for our ability to digest and absorb the nutrition from the food that we eat is also the force that enables us to “digest” our life experiences and process our emotion. Therefore if our ability to process our emotions is dampened, it can have a direct effect on our capacity to digest nourishment from our food and vice versa.
This ancient wisdom has been upheld in modern research too. A significant body of evidence has shown that the gut is the second brain (or in the opinion of some experts, the first). This is why we often “feel” our anxieties or emotions in our digestive system through butterflies, cramps or a change in bowel movement for example. Likewise, research has shown that the balance of beneficial bacteria and inflammation – a natural and important function in the body that protects us from damage – may contribute to depression and anxiety when out of balance. Probiotic supplements and natural anti-inflammatories such as Omega 3 fatty acids and Turmeric can be especially helpful on a physical level and thereby on our emotions too.Supporting the flow
The word emotion itself comes from the Latin word emovere—to be moved. Emotions move us, they are energy in motion but they are also a call to action and attention.
Many of us are afraid to feel our emotions. If we lovingly hold space and simply observe and feel the emotion, it will rise, fall, and come to a natural state of completion. We can physically and emotionally let go of what isn't needed (elimination) and keep what is nourishing (nutritional wisdom).
According to Ayurveda, when emotions are repressed or misused, they lead to pain and suffering both physically and emotionally. The digestive process of food is similar. If the fire of digestion is stalled, due to an unhealthy diet or lifestyle we experience dampened digestive ‘fire’ leading to issues such as constipation, loose stools, IBS, or other digestive complaints.
By undergoing a nutritional deep cleansing routine such as panchakarma we have the opportunity to purify both the physical and emotional body.
My experience of Panchakarma was life changing. I don’t make that statement lightly. I didn’t return a different person, I returned myself; I returned to myself - balanced, restored and reconnected with re-ignited digestive “fire”.
3 Ways to Purify Emotions and Boost Digestion
These are two recommendations that have not only supported my own wellbeing but many of my clients to:- Undergo a month long nutritional cleanse that supports elimination and nourishment.
- Meditate: Bringing your awareness inward while meditating allows you to feel any unprocessed feelings stored in the body. Staying with your feelings with total loving awareness allows emotions to rise, digest, and fall away.
This is a great recipe to make in advance or in a slow cooker if you have one. Saag daal is a traditional Indian vegetable dish, rich with aromatic flavours. In traditional medicine, fennel seeds have been used as a remedy for indigestion and deliver an anise-like flavour. Turmeric and ginger root are potent anti-inflammatories. Serve with brown rice for a filling meal.
225g moong daal (yellow split lentils)