You don’t need a guru to tell you that physical and mental health share an unbreakable bond. From what you eat and the way you exercise to the fragrances you choose, taking good care of one means doing the same for the other.
Plus, whether you’re fighting an ongoing battle against low moods and waning motivation or simply feel a little out of whack, Ayurvedic science can offer solutions and tools to help you.
In this blog, we round up some of our favourite Ayurvedic mental health tips that combine tried-and-tested ancient traditions with proven modern science.
1. Heal from within using Ayurvedic herbal supplements
In an ideal world, we’d get everything we need from diet alone, but it’s not so easy in today’s pre-picked, pre-packaged era. However, thanks to the wonders of modern medicine and science, we can carefully craft supplements that tick all the right boxes in one simple step.
At Deja, we’ve even developed a supplement that is designed to give you a balanced mind using Ayurvedic super herbs. Mind Balance blends 11 natural Ayurvedic ingredients that are scientifically proven to bring balance to busy minds. These include:
Referred to as ‘nature’s Xanax’, Ashwagandha is a herb proven to increase the body’s ability to cope with stress and therefore reduce anxiety. The science is undeniable - in a clinical study, 88% of adults who suffered from chronic stress felt calmer as a result of using the supplement. It’s believed to work by blocking the pathways in the brain that lead to stress receptors, and does so without the need for any synthesised chemicals.
Sometimes called Bacopa, this ingredient has been used for centuries to help steady a restless mind. Researchers have found it to be effective in reducing symptoms in up to 85% of children with ADHD, and it’s also prescribed to patients with Alzheimer’s Disease to help improve their memory. So, if you’re lacking motivation or are stuck in a vicious procrastination cycle, (it happens to the best of us), introducing Brahmi into your routine could help ramp up your productivity levels.
This ‘Indian Gooseberry’ is positively bursting with nutrition, fibre and antioxidants. Put simply, it’s a banquet for the brain and human body. Amla helps to fight free radicals (unstable atoms that contribute to damaged and ageing cells) and has a high citric acid content that counteracts accumulations of iron - a phenomenon linked too many neurological conditions and mental health issues.
2. Practice mindfulnessWe don’t need to tell you about the benefits of regular meditation. Everyone from yoga gurus to hot-shot CEOs seem to be waxing lyrical about the positive impact it can have for your mental and physical health. But if you’re new to it, the prospect of sitting still and silent could feel a bit daunting.
At Deja, we love the Calm app for those who are new to practicing mindfulness. And, to help you out further, we’re curating our favourite wellness events and guided meditations here.
Another way to be mindful in your day-to-day life, beyond the act of meditation, is to introduce intentional practices such as journaling. It might sound like a superficial act, but there’s a whopping 83 benefits of journaling including stress reduction and boosted moods. Start by noting down thoughts that have been on your mind at the end of each day, and see where it takes you.
3. Work out which workout is best for you
All forms of exercise are good for you, but not all exercise was created equal. Just like different people need different nutrients in their diets, the type of exercise you do can hugely influence how good you feel, inside and out. Ayurvedic practitioners say that each person has a unique ‘dosha’ make-up - Vata, Pitta and Kapha - which influence our body types and personality among other things.
Understanding your dosha can help you to learn which type of workout is going to best balance your body and mind. For example, if your primary dosha is the fiery Pitta force, you’ll feel great after swimming because the calm, water-based activity can help to focus your mind. In contrast, competitive team sports might leave you feeling wound-up and agitated. Airy and changeable Vata should take up yoga to help them slow down but avoid high-intensity activity that will tire them quickly. For grounded, earth-and-water-centered Kapha, sustained exercises like jogging will invigorate, while slow-moving ones like golf will only slow you down.
Not sure what your dosha type is? Take our quiz to find out.
4. Teach yourself to form positive habits
Habits get a bad wrap. The word is often used to describe undesirable traits and behaviours, but a habit is nothing more than a learned behaviour. Plus, with the help of a little mindful magic, we can form new ones that enrich our lives almost automatically.
Mental health charity Mind says that building a routine can help us to curb stress and anxiety levels and help to protect against certain mental illnesses. What’s more, there are plenty of Ayurvedic mind tips that can help to build a daily structure and balance your inner forces for an enduring sense of happiness and harmony.
Again, this Ayurvedic treatment comes down to the doshas, which peak and trough at various times throughout the day. First thing in the morning, slow Kapha tends to dominate, making this a great time to exercise. During the middle of the day, fiery Pitta allows for the logical aspects of your brain to flourish, resulting in productivity and focus. And as the day winds down, your focus will wane as airy Vata takes over and offers a brilliant window for creative tasks and inspiration-seeking.
5. Feed your dosha
There’s no such thing as a universally ‘good diet’. Everybody needs something different to be at their best, physically and mentally. One of the most interesting lessons that Ayurveda offers is that our gut health can influence the way we feel throughout the rest of our body and mind, though. For this reason, keeping a happy, healthy gut can fast-track your route to holistic health.
Again, this approach requires you to know which dosha you are. Begin, by taking our quiz for an overview of your dominant dosha and the foods that help to balance it.
How can Deja help?
These are just five of the many ways that you can achieve a balanced mind using Ayurveda science. The key thing to remember is that one of the basic teachings of Ayurvedic medicine is to always strive for balance, and not perfection.
Us humans are in a constant state of flux and the more we can learn to shift and adapt along with these natural forces in our bodies, the calmer and more in control we’ll feel. For more information about our supplements and Ayurvedic products, drop us a message on Instagram or shop the full range here.