Showing posts with label health. Show all posts
Showing posts with label health. Show all posts

Not so Known Health Benefits of Mint Herb | Pudina

Mint Leaves
Mint Leaves
Mint/Pudina in Ayurveda is a herb which arouses the senses and decongests the orifices of our head. It is aromatic menthol and rich in many chemicals, vitamins and minerals. This herbaceous plant is antibacterial and antifibrile.

Mint can be used for the treatment of illness such as headache, rhinitis, cough with sore throat, colic, vomiting, etc. Mint is a good blood cleanser. It is also used as cardiac tonic in most of the pharmaceutical preparations. Mint’s antiseptic and antibacterial property makes it effective against most cases of oral infections like swollen gums, mouth ulcers and toothaches.

Surprising Health Benefits of Mint

  • Helps in treating stomachache and chest pains. Mint leaves soaked in water to make tea can ease stomach pain and as a sleeping aid. 
  • Used to whiten teeth. Boil 6 tablespoons of Mint leaves and 2 glasses of water for 15 min. Strain the water and allow it to cool. Divide this into two portions and take each portion after 3-4 hours. This is an excellent remedy for toothaches. 
  • Crushed and bruised Mint can be used for treatment of insect bites. 
  • The strong aroma of fresh Mint leaves can stimulate brain functioning which is helpful for nausea. 
  • For headaches, crushed Mint leaves are applied on forehead and temple. 
  • For treating coughs, boil 6 tablespoons of chopped Mint leaves in 2 glasses of water for 15 min. Strain the water and allow it to cool. Divide this into 3 portions and take it 3 times a day. 
  • Take some fresh Mint leaves and heat them on low flame. Pounding and applying on painful joints or muscles when it’s still warm, helps in the relief from arthritis. 
  • For a refreshing mouthwash, soak 2 tablespoons of chopped Mint leaves in 1 glass of hot water for 30 min and then strain the water. 
  • Mint is loaded with antioxidants that are excellent for abdomen. The menthol in it helps enzymes necessary for digestion. 
  • The mint extract causes a cooling effect on the hurting area, making it numb to an extent and so one can feel the pain reducing. 
  • You can also breathe in the vapors of mint extract as it calms down the nerves and gives a relaxed feeling to whole body. 
  • The anti inflammatory and anti bacterial property of Mint makes it an excellent remedy for skin with acne. The strong antioxidant in Mint leaves a natural blush on skin and also re-hydrates the skin that is dry and gloomy. 
  • Mint is very helpful in preventing skin from inflammation, patches and blackheads. It also helps in quicker removal of dry and gloomy skin. The removal of dry skin will help pores to open, allowing skin to breathe. 
  • To avoid bad breath or to kill bacteria in mouth, chew some mint leaves regularly. 
  • Mint is packed with many nutrients and so they help in improving body’s immune system. 
  • The aromatherapy from of mint extract is used to beat stress and revitalize the mind. 
  • Inhaling the fumes of mint helps in relaxing the body and soothing the mind. 
  • Mint helps in releasing small amounts of serotonin in brain that helps a person to beat stress or depression. 
  • Mint is a great remedy for expectant mothers to treat morning sickness or nausea. Eat few leaves of Mint or smelling few crushed leaves can be very helpful.
Mint is beneficial herb and we recommend you buy organic seeds and grow your plant at home.

Health Benefits of Drinking Hot Water as per Ayurveda

"The digestive fire in the intestines (jataragni) is the root of all the digestive fires in the body. As it causes the increase or decrease of the elemental and tissue digestive fires it should be treated with great care." - Ashtanga Hridaya Samhita

Ayurveda considers that health of the digestive system is at the center of optimum health. An undigested meal leaves discomfort . Ayurveda teaches you the way to enhance your digestion and digest all your experiences! Agni digests this food and the control centers in the brain are nourished by these fragrant "vapors". This nourishment releases the nervous impulses, which in turn release enzymes and hormones. This stimulates systemic metabolic activity so that the whole body-mind complex functions efficiently.

So as per Ayurveda view it's important to drink hot or lukewarm water. Cold water slows down the digestive system and thus hinder the absorption, assimilation, metabolism and digestion. As a result incompletely or undigested food that moves through the digestive system, may or may not be eliminated properly. As a result, you may feel heavy, tired and bloated. Proper elimination is essential to prevent the build-up of waste material in the intestine since such a build up creates toxins and stops foods from being merged with the body.

Hot water stimulates hunger, supports in good digestion, sooth’s throat, cleanses bladder, reduces hiccups, and soothes the increased vata and kapha. It quiets characteristics of breathlessness, fevers as well as cold and cough. It pulls out and flushes’s AMA, the metabolic toxin from a body.

So sipping hot water through out the day and after meals with the gap of 1-2 hours helps in effective digestion and can help for the elimination of toxic accumulations from the body’s nervous system. Some of the health benefits of drinking hot or lukewarm water are:
  • Enhanced Stamina and Performance
  • improves blood circulation
  • Increase perspiration
  • Cure constipation
  • Aid in weight loss
  • helps in Cleansing and purifying of body
  • works for cold and cough
  • reduces body pain
  • Develops Emotional Responses and Thoughts
According to Ayurveda if you drink warm water, you can purify your mind and body and acquire a balanced mental state. This equilibrium can help to keep your thoughts clear, that may lead to bettered overall health.

Our Belly Button is Life Itself!

Health with Belly Button
Health with Belly Button

Our belly button (NABHI ) is an amazing gift given to us by our creator. A 62 year old man had poor vision in his left eye. He could hardly see especially at night and was told by eye specialists that his eyes were in a good condition but the only problem was that the veins supplying blood to his eyes were dried up and he would never be able to see again.

According to Science, the first part created after conception takes place is the belly button. After it’s created, it joins to the mother’s placenta through the umbilical chord.

Our belly button is surely an amazing thing! According to science, after a person has passed away, the belly button is still warm for 3 hours the reason being that when a woman conceives a child, her belly button supplies nourishment to the child through the child’s belly button. And a fully grown child is formed in 270 days = 9 months.

This is the reason all our veins are connected to our belly button which makes it the focal point of our body. Belly button is life itself!

The “PECHOTI” is situated behind the belly button which has 72,000 plus veins over it. The total amount of blood vessels we have in our body are equal to twice the circumference of the earth.

Applying oil to belly button CURES dryness of eyes, poor eyesight, pancreas over or under working, cracked heels and lips, keeps face glowing, shiny hair, knee pain, shivering, lethargy, joint pains, dry skin.
  • REMEDY For dryness of eyes, poor eyesight, fungus in nails, glowing skin, shiny hair*At night before bed time, put 3 drops of pure ghee or coconut oil in your belly button and spread it 1 and half inches around your belly button.
  • For knee painAt night before bed time, put 3 drops of castor oil in your belly button and spread it 1 and half inches around your belly button.
  • For shivering and lethargy, relief from joint pain, dry skinAt night before bed time, put 3 drops of mustard oil in your belly button and spread it 1 and half inches around your belly button.


You belly button can detect which veins have dried up and pass this oil to it hence open them up.

When a baby has a stomach ache, we normally mix asafoetida (hing) and water or oil and apply around the naval. Within minutes the ache is cured. Oil works the same way.

Try it. There's no harm in trying.

You can keep a small dropper bottle with the required oil next to your bed and drop few drops onto navel and massage it before going to sleep. This will make it convenient to pour and avoid accidental spillage.

I am forwarding this valuable and very useful information received from  AYUSH MINISTRY, Govt. Of India

Ayurveda Recommends Daily Supefoods

As per Ayurveda, watching what you eat is possibly the best way to start. “Ahaar (meaning dietary habits in Ayurveda) says that food eaten should have at least one of six tastes: sweet, sour, salty, bitter, pungent and astringent. “The right foods promotes sattva (purity), detox the body, and rejuvenate it as well, leading to an overall increase in immunity, physical and mental strength, and digestion."

So for overall well-being include these super-foods listed below in your daily regime.

Ginger is anti inflammatory that stimulates appetite, and reduces intestinal pain, gas and bloating. Fresh ginger is good battle to nausea, especially pregnancy-induced vomiting. Dried ginger root works well on joint pains (mix with almond oil and rub on painful areas), as well as migraines, and helps lower cholesterol levels. So enjoy fresh ginger boiled in water as your detox drink instead of tea. Add them to food while cooking to aid good digestion.

Ashwagandha Root (Indian ginseng)
Ashwagandha is popularly used in Ayurveda for fighting stress, anxiety and fatigue. Also used to relieve painful swelling or rheumatoid arthritis -- traditionally its leaves were applied to the painful area -- Ashwangandha is also considered beneficial for increasing sperm count in men. These are available as churna and supplements which you can make part of your daily regimen. Know more about Ashwagandha

Popularly known as the Indian gooseberry, this fruit is a powerful antioxidant and rich in Vitamin C and Calcium. “It also works as a digestive tonic, cleansing the colon, and removes excess heat from the body." Amla is also known for its anti-ageing properties. Amla oil is directly applied to the hair as it fights dandruff.
You can have amla candies as digestive popups after meals, you can have it in the form of chutney, pickles or murabba. Supplements are also available in the market.

Know more on Amla
Turmeric is an all rounder, thanks to its anti-viral, anti-bacterial, and anti-fungal properties. “It is used to treat skin conditions, detoxify the liver and is excellent for diabetics as it lowers blood sugar." While it can be applied directly to treat wounds, it is very beneficial when ingested, preferably when mixed in milk with some black pepper and honey. Make it a habit to drink lukewarm milk with few drops of ghee and a tsp of turmeric in it before going to bed. Helps in relieving stress, relaxes mind, good sleep and helps in regenerating fatigued body cells.

Know more about TurmericHealth Benefits of Turmeric | Curcumin (Haldi)

Ghee is a wonderful source of healthy fat. It actually lowers cholesterol, thanks to its content of omega-3 fatty acids, and helps improve heart health." It also helps maintain healthy eyesight and skin, and trumps carbs as an excellent source of energy. 
Ghee- Indian Superfood is a Pre-biotic


Tulsi is considered to be sacred plant. “In Ayurveda, tulsi leaves, ginger and cardamom boiled in water make for a healing potion to treat sore throats, headaches and chest congestion." Tulsi juice is also effective in treating acne, as well as other skin disorders such as ring worm infections, rashes and itchiness. Regular consumption of tulsi also helps purify the blood, reduce blood sugar and build immunity.

“Brahmi or Bacopa is used to balance the three body types specified in Ayurveda: Vata, Pitta and Kapha, " adding that this herb also helps sustain brain and nervous system functions. “It is traditionally mixed with sesame oil, and used to massage away stress and soothe the nerves”. Brahmi also helps improve memory power.

Important Vitamins Every Woman Needs.

Vitamins & Minerals are essential and the nutritional needs of every person is the same in general, but women's reproductive health plays a key role in determining which vitamins and minerals are most important for her.

Women should make sure they are getting enough of these important vitamins and minerals to ensure optimal health.

Since women are about five times as likely as men to develop bone diseases such as osteoporosis, calcium is a vital mineral that no woman should ignore. Doctors often recommend a calcium supplement for women as a matter of routine, since even a healthy, balanced diet does not always prove sufficient quantities of this important mineral. Post-menopausal woman are often advised to take 1,200 milligrams of calcium per day while per-menopausal women are usually encouraged to take about 1,000 milligrams per day.

Fish oil is an excellent source of Omega-3, a fatty acid. Lowers cancer risk, lower the risk of heart disease, and help keep depression at bay. 

This vitamin is perhaps most useful for its ability to bolster the immune system, which can help fight off many conditions ranging from a common cold to cancer. Some doctors even think that it may help reduce the risk of breast cancer by up to 50 percent. It is also vital for helping the body absorb calcium, which makes the combination of vitamin D and calcium a potent weapon against many diseases, and help to keep bones strong and healthy at the same time.

Vitamin C is a powerful antioxidant which is beneficial for a range of things which include wound healing, generation of new red blood cells, immune system health, and prevention of heart disease.

B vitamins are particularly helpful for maintaining brain health and may help with many other bodily functions such as helping to maintain muscle tone and the formation of new cells.

Another powerful antioxidant, vitamin E aids in the production of blood cells and helps cellular membranes maintain their integrity. Vitamin E also may help slow the aging process and help skin stay healthy.


Natural foods like carrots or cantaloupe are good source but a number of factors can prevent a woman from getting a sufficient quantity of this essential vitamin such as poor diet or a lack of access to high-quality foods. Vitamin A boasts benefits, like improving heart health and helping skin maintain a youthful appearance.

Adequate levels of iron are also essential for the proper function of the immune system.

Although not a vitamin or mineral, probiotics have been promoted as an aid to digestion and overall health in recent years as medical science discovers the importance of the digestive system or “gut” when it comes to maintaining a healthy immune system. Taking probiotics may also help to ease conditions such as irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) and poor digestion in general.

Ghee- Indian Superfood is a Pre-biotic

We on our spree to weight loss tend to do all kinds of diet which may or may not be ideal for our body. Due to these fad diets we tend to develop gut bacteria which makes every sensory organ to start function at below optimum including our brain. So we end up saying we did everything but still our weight is stuck. What a poor deal we cut ourselves for weight loss.

When we our on diet or weight loss, the first thing that we remove from our diet is ghee without even knowing all the while that ghee, made at home, is not just good for maintaining strength & diversity of the gut bacteria and spine but also makes for a potent fat-loss aid. The SCFA in ghee is now recognized as a ‘prebiotic’, something which creates an environment conducive for the gut-friendly bacteria to prosper. That’s also what makes it a great anti-allergen.

Lets Understand What Are Prebiotics and How They Work?

  • PREBIOTICS provide a wide range of health benefits to the otherwise healthy person. Most of these have been medically proven. 
  • PREBIOTICS nourish the good bacteria that everyone already has in their gut.
  • PREBIOTICS may be helpful for several chronic digestive disorders or inflammatory bowel disease. 
For years, hardly anyone in the medical profession paid any attention to the role the colon plays in overall health. The healthy bacteria that live there strengthen the bowel wall, improve mineral absorption and aid in the regulation of hormone production, which has a range of essential benefits.

Now lets find out the difference between Prebiotics vs. Probiotics

Last but not least;For Indians, ghee is a religious matter rather than a food item. It has dominated most Indian kitchens for centuries. In Ayurveda, Ghee has a lot of recommendation in daily diet.

One tablespoon (15g) of ghee has approximately 135 calories, all of which come from fat. That small amount of ghee has 15 grams of total fat and 9 grams of saturated fat, or 45% of the recommended daily value. A tablespoon of ghee also has 45 milligrams of cholesterol, or 15% of the daily value. Ghee is free of sodium, carbohydrates, fiber, sugar and protein.

Ghee is lactose and casein free
Ghee is considered one of the best oils for baking, sautƩing and deep frying:
Ghee has a rich, sweet and deliciously nutty flavor

We should eat Ghee everyday. Healthy people should have 3 teaspoons (15g / 1 tablespoon) of desi ghee per day to get all benefits. Preferably one teaspoon of pure ghee, three times a day will do the work.

As per Ayurveda, best way to consume it is to add ghee to rotis, parathas, dal, curry etc. Avoid Indian sweets because they contain lot of sugar. Avoid cooking or frying in Ghee.

Why should you eat ghee every day?
  • Increases your resistance against seasonal allergies and common ailments:While ghee is rich in the healthy fat-soluble vitamins A, D, E, and K, it is also rich in antioxidants. It increases the body resistance for various infections and diseases by boosting the immune system. 
  • Stimulates the digestive system:
    Ghee stimulates the secretion of stomach acids to aid in digestion, while other fats and oils, can slow down the body’s digestive process and sit heavy in the stomach.
  • Reduces Cholesterol Levels:
    Ghee lowers the bad blood cholesterol level and enhances the good blood cholesterol level. 
  • Boost fertility:An optimal fertility diet should contain good quality protein sources and good fats. Pure ghee is the best form of fat. It increases quality and quantity of semen.
  • Improves skin:
    It rejuvenates the skin from inside and increases its glow. 

Happy readingšŸ˜Š

Apple Cider Vinegar Regulates Blood Sugar And Weight Loss

There are numerous health benefits offered by ACV. 
Apple Cider Vinegar is very good for Glucose Regulation and Weight Reduction.

Glucose Control:
Apple Cider Vinegar is said to control sugar levels in type 2 diabetics due to its anti-glycemic properties. There is a lessening in fasting glucose measures upto 4-6% if you consume 2 tablespoons of apple cider vinegar before a feast. Studies have shown that ladies who combined their supper with ACV had a 55% reduction in the blood glucose.

Weight Reduction:
People who consume apple cider vinegar each day have improved weight reduction. The chemicals in ACV help boost blood fixation which controls hunger or bloating.

ACV is also said to improve vitality, improve liver function and BMI.

E-cigarettes: Not a healthy alternative to smoking

Credit: TheNorlo/Wikipedia
Caveat emptor – or "buyer beware" holds true when it comes to the unknown health effects of e-cigarettes. An article in the June issue of Annals of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology, the scientific journal of the American College of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology (ACAAI), examines risks, including the ongoing dependence on nicotine and the dual use of e-cigarettes and regular cigarettes.

The article examines the idea that one of the initial "health benefits" proposed by e-cigarettes makers was that it would help those who smoke cigarettes cut back. The authors say that theory hasn't been proven, and there's no evidence to support the claims.

"Despite the apparent optimism surrounding e-cigarettes and their purported therapeutic role in smoking cessation, there just simply is not enough evidence to suggest that consumers should use e-cigarettes for this purpose." said allergist Andrew Nickels, MD, lead author, ACAAI member, Mayo Clinic Division of Allergy and Immunology.

Another cause for concern is that when people use e-cigarettes in public and still smoke regular cigarettes at home, they continue to expose children and asthma sufferers in the household to dangerous second hand smoke.

"Dual use of both e-cigarettes and regular cigarettes carries the risk of secondhand smoke exposure, causing worsening respiratory effects on children and asthma sufferers. It also promotes ongoing nicotine dependence," said Chitra Dinakar, MD, co-author, ACAAI fellow and Professor of Pediatrics, Children's Mercy Hospitals.

Because e-cigarettes are fairly new, there could be other long-term health complications that have yet to be discovered. Results of long-term exposure to such substances are unknown. Due to the lack of production oversight, most consumers don't know what's in the e-cigarettes they buy. The US Food and Drug Administration admits that the safety and efficacy of e-cigarettes hasn't been fully studied, and consumers have no way of knowing if e-cigarettes are safe for their intended use.

Organizations like ACAAI are advocating for enhanced scrutiny and regulation by the FDA. The ACAAI's position statement on e-cigarettes recognizes that nicotine delivered by any mechanism represents a drug exposure, and that vaporization instruments are a drug delivery system, both of which are within the Federal Drug Agency's scope of regulation.

Inhaling irritants such as smoke and vapors has an impact on the lungs, whether it is mild or severe. And irritants can cause asthma attacks in some individuals. These attacks are responsible for some of the 4,000 asthma-related deaths per year.

Provided by American College of Allergy, Asthma, and Immunology

Simple Tips & Home Remedies for Viral Fever

Fever is caused due to the aggravation of any one or all the doshas of the body. Fever can occur as a result of infection, because of external injury, insect bite or poisoning. It must be kept in mind that fever can also be a symptom of many conditions, like bronchitis, pleurisy, tuberculosis, jaundice, malaria, measles or influenza.

Following are the signs that indicate the presence of this ailment:
• High temperature
• Headache
• Muscle ache
• Burning eyes
• Loss of appetite
• Coated tongue
• Excessive production of saliva
• Feeling of heaviness and nausea

It is highly recommended that in Viral Fever you take ample amount of rest with easily digestible diet and lots of liquid to flush out the toxins from the body.

Simple Helpful Tips for Viral Fever
  • In viral fever it is strongly recommended to consume soup made up of raw garlic and onion. 
  • A mixture of honey, lime juice and brandy is recommended to consume four times daily. 
  • The vitamin C in the lime helps in increasing the resistance of the body and helps in reducing the illness. 
  • Lukewarm orange juice acts as an energy booster if consumed during the fever. This washes out the body toxin without any artificial treatment. alterey helps in speedy recovery of viral fever. 
  • Similarly, drinking juice made out of sweet basil leaves twice or thrice a day is beneficial. 
  • You can also boil 2 to 3 tablespoon of dry roasted fenugreek seeds, strain the water and add a drop of clarified butter to it in order to cure viral fever.
  • Khichadi is very good with spices like cumin seeds, coriander, turmeric, ginger and salt can be also be added to it. Small amounts of whole grain bread or biscuits can be taken with milk. Heavy foods that are difficult to digest like fried foods, fast foods, meat, chicken, fish, and raw foods should be completely avoided.
  • Also gargling with salt and water is helpful, as it helps cure cough and throat related problems. Try using vaporizer in this situation as it soothes both cough and cold. One can also use margosa leaves which act as a natural antiviral and prevent the spread of infection.
  • During viral fever, it's very common that the patient loses his appetite. But in this situation, it's very important to take fluid diet and food rich in vitamins and minerals. Apricot juice mixed with one   tablespoon of honey or glucose supplements the body with required minerals and vitamins. Also, you can take grapefruit juice. The extract of raisins is also valuable in case of viral fever.
  • Tulsi leaves when chewed directly or taken in water or tea works wonderfully in this case. 
  • Make sure you drink boiled water. When suffering from viral fever, always consume clean and fresh fruits and vegetables. Always consume home cooked food to prevent the problem from increasing. 
  • You can also take a spoonful of honey mixed with ginger syrup after every meal to cure viral fever.

Ten Super-foods that fight Pain and Inflammation

Here’s a list of top ten foods that help fight inflammation:
Cherries and Berries: cherry extract is ten times more effective than regular pain killers for relieving inflammation. About two tablespoons of the concentrated juice, when consumed regularly, can produce effective results. Sweet cherries, raspberries, blackberries and strawberries, all of which show similar effects.

Several other research have shown that blueberries are also excellent in relieving pain. Scientists discovered that when people consume blueberries regularly, there is an increase in the amount of compounds called heat-shock proteins. They reduce inflammation, pain and tissue damage.

Celery: Nearly 20 compounds in celery, including celery seeds contain a substance called apigenin, which is known for its anti-inflammatory action. Celery seeds can therefore be added to soups, stews or as salt substitute to recipes.

Ginger: Ginger, which has been widely used in treating inflammation and pain, helps in reducing the pain-causing prostaglandin levels in the body. Indian researchers have noticed that patients suffering from muscular pain, when given 500 to 1000 milligrams of ginger per day, experienced improvement.

Turmeric: Numerous researches have shown that turmeric is an effective anti-inflammatory herb in dealing with acute inflammation, due to its therapeutic ingredient, curcumin. This ingredient helps by suppressing pain, in a manner similar to that of drugs like COX-1 and COX-2 inhibitors.

Flax seeds / Flax oil: Freshly ground flax seeds and cold-pressed flax oil are best in fighting inflammation, due to their high Omega-3 content. However, care should be taken not to cook flax oil, as flax oil when cooked may have the opposite effect, further increasing the pain.

Raw walnuts / Walnut oil: Raw walnuts contain the same powerful Omega-3 fatty acids that fight pain and inflammation in the body.

Onions and Garlic: Onions contain plenty of quercetin, a potent antioxidant that helps fight inflammation. Garlic is also recommended during cold and illness, as it has amazing anti-inflammatory properties.
Pineapple: It is another tart fruit just like the cherries, and contain bromelain, an antioxidant that can boost immunity naturally.

Grapes: Grapes contain the antioxidant resveratrol that fights inflammation and cancer. Drinking grape juice can lower inflammation in people with stable coronary artery disease.

Broccoli: contains plenty of vitamin C and calcium, and is effective in fighting inflammation, particularly eye inflammation.

Hence, by just adopting a healthy eating pattern, you can take a proactive step in fighting inflammation, by incorporating these super-foods into your diet. Thus, with the right diet and lifestyle, you can fight pain, inflammation and associated illness. When at pain, food is no-doubt, the easiest and best medicine.

Home Remedies & Ayurvedic Herbs to cure Stretch Marks

One of the common problems that women face is that of stretch marks on the body. Stretch marks are fine lines on the skin that looks like cracks. These are ugly looking and make the skin look dull. In many cases, women have these marks on the skin from birth or else they develop it during the pregnancy phase. Thigh and the breast region are two of the major areas that can have these lines.

Now lets understand why these stretch marks occurs?
Stretch marks occur when the dermis, the middle layer of your skin, is stretched to a point where its elasticity begins to break down. Skin is made of 80% collagen and 4% elastin fibre mesh network . Elastin is the protein in the skin which gives it its flexibility and allows it to stretch. The elastin forms a fishnet-like network in the skin which allows our skin to stretch and recoil back to its original position. These elastin fibers are damaged in stretch marks, causing the 'scar' of a stretch mark. As the dermis is stretched, the outer layer of skin, the epidermis, also stretches making it translucent enough that you can see the reddish purple stretch mark forming.  As these marks heal, scar formation occurs, and you have a stretch mark. 
Excessive stretching of skin is often associated with rapid growth (e.g. puberty) or weight gain (e.g. pregnancy). Although the skin is fairly elastic, rapid stretching of the skin will leave permanent stretch marks.

Heredity also affects the presence of stretch marks to a great extent.

Home remedies are a good substitute for any problem and so it is for stretch marks. Here is a list of the perfect natural solutions to your problem.
  • In a blender, mix ½ cup olive oil, ¼ cup Aloe Vera gel, liquid from 6 Vitamin E capsules and liquid from 4 Vitamin A capsules. Store it in a container and place it in the refrigerator. Apply this mixture wherever stretch marks appear.
  • Prepare a mixture by adding seven drops of lavender oil and a few drops of chamomile oil to an ounce of carrier oil (avocado, sweet almond or jojoba oil). Use it to massage the affected area.
  • Cocoa butter is beneficial in treating stretch marks. Apply it two times a day, in the morning as well as in the evening, over the affected area. This would help remove the marks.
  • Aroma oil is beneficial in treating stretch marks problem. Apply some of this oil on the stretch marks and massage well.
  • Massaging your body with olive oil or Vitamin E may help.
  • One of the simplest, yet effective home remedies for stretch marks would be to apply lavender oil on the marks, three times a day.
  • Rub the affected area with apricot scrub. This is likely to remove the stretch marks gradually.
  • 1/2 cup virgin olive oil. 1/4 cup aloevera gel. Liquid from 6 capsules of Vitamin E.Liquid from 4 capsules of Vitamin A. Mix all the ingredients together in a blender. After that pour the mixture into a jar and store it in the fridge. Apply the oil externally all over the places where the stretch marks commonly appear (abdomen, hips, thighs and breasts). If you do this consistently every day, you may prevent stretch marks.
  • Dairy products, tomatoes and green vegetables are some of the foods that are highly recommended for those who want to clean their skin from stretch marks.
  • Fresh Aloe Vera gel if applied on the marks everyday will gradually lighten them and soon wipe them off from your skin.
  • Last but not least exercise regularly. Toning the muscles of the body regularly is definitely a good idea to clean the skin of the dull marks. More than wiping them off, exercising will help in prevention of the same. 

Advice for Stretch Marks Prevention
  • Eat seeds and nuts that are rich in mineral content, especially zinc to tone up the skin during pregnancy.
  • Make sure in your diet you are getting plenty of protein and foods rich in Vitamin C and Vitamin E, they promote good tissue growth.
  • It is very important to exercise in order to get rid of stretch marks; toning your muscles helps your skin to firm thus preventing stretch marks.
  • Avoid saturated fats in excess, because they can cause excessive stretching of the skin, and also leads to Obesity.

Ayurvedic Herbs for Stretch Marks
The herbs used in ayurvedic medicine for preventing & treating stretch marks are:
  • Neem: It reduces the stretch marks.
  • Tulasi: Holy Basil prevents scars and stretch marks caused during pregnancy. A decoction of Tulasi leaves takes care of the skin.
  • Aloe Vera: Apply Aloe Vera gel on the stretch marks or any other scars. It is effective in curing such marks.
  • Brahmi: This herb is used as one of the main ingredients in cosmetic products for healing stretch marks. It also takes care of other skin problems.
  • Manjishtha: This herb is used in Ayurveda in treating the skin problems like stretch marks and also prevents skin ulcers.
  • Amla: It has rich source of Vitamin C which is good for healthy skin. Regular intake of Amla will help to have a good skin texture.
  • Shwet Chandanam: Apply the paste this herb (White Sandalwood) on the stomach during pregnancy. Its cooling effect protects the skin from stretching.
  • Turmeric: It is very good for skin. It nourishes the skin giving it a healthy natural glow. It prevents many skin problems and reduces the inflammation of skin. Regular use of turmeric on skin can reduce stretch marks and provide a natural toning of the skin.

Facts about Weight Gain & How to Loose Weight with easy Tips

Some Reasons for Weight Gain
The reasons for sudden increase in body weight can be many. One factor to consider is age. Others could be our diet. What we eat has a profound effect on our mind as well as the body. It is not only important as to what we eat but it is equally important as to how we eat. Also the metabolic rate and psychological aspects also contribute to weight gain.

As one ages the metabolic rate decreases leading to weight gain. This type of weight gain is observed in people in their late 30s. Thyroid imbalance and decrease in thyroid levels in particular lead to sudden weight gain. Change in lifestyle, mindless consumption of junk food etc. lead to weight gain.

But we also find people who do take junk food and still look lean and mean. This is due to their higher metabolic rate.

Now what is metabolism or metabolic rate?
It is the rate at which our body will use energy, better known as burning calories. If your body can burn calories faster then there is no excessive weight gain.

BMR or basal metabolic rate is the rate at which your body burns calories at rest. A general way to calculate this is by multiplying your weight in pounds by 10. To know your true BMR, seek professional advice.

Now the more you exercise, the better gets your metabolism. And with a higher metabolism you will burn calories more efficiently. As for a person with a low metabolism rate, he/she will burn fewer calories from the same amount of food and store the calories that were not 'burned' into fats.

Some Ayurvedic Tips for Weight Loss
  • Increase the intake of horsegram, kidney beans, millet, dry broken beans etc in your diet.
  • 'Varadi' is a kashayam available in ayurvedic stores. Take 15 ml of this kashayam and mix it in 60 ml boiled and cooled water. Add honey one spoonful to this mix and take it early morning and evening in empty stomach. Lie down to your left side immediately after taking this for 15 minutes. On getting up, drink a glass of warm water. This kashayam is an excellent remedy to reduce excessive fat.
  • Avoid yoghurt or curd. Add one spoon of 'triphala' choornam in 80 ml of water and boil it. Once boiled, let it cool and then filter out the solids. Add a spoon of honey to this and take it immediately after food morning and evening.
  • Needless to say, exercise is a must. An hour after taking kashayam in the mornings, walk briskly for at least 30-45 minutes. Avoid daytime nap.
  • Horsegram is powdered to a nice consistency. Heat sour buttermilk and add 100 gm of horsegram powder to this and make a consistent paste. Apply this paste onto fat deposits on the body and massage vigorously in upward strokes. Horsegram is known to reduce body fat very effectively.Take hot water bath after half an hour. Use 'eladhi choornam' instead of soap. Add a few drops of water to this choornam and prepare a thick paste and use it for bathing purposes.
  • Avoid non-vegetarian food at all cost. Keep your colons clean and avoid constipation, take plenty of fibers. Triphala also helps prevent constipation.
Lavana Thailam for Weight Loss
One of the popular Ayurvedic preparations for weight loss is Lavana thailam. This oil is to be gently massaged in upward strokes on areas of fat deposits.  It is to be washed off after 15 minutes with warm water.

The suggested regime is three months and can extend to six months in some stubborn cases.  The oil can be used by regulars too who want to maintain their figure and prevent accumulation of fat.

Eat the right way
1. The diet, especially hard substances should be properly chewed.
2.Wherever possible intake of curd or buttermilk should follow food.
3. The food should be tasty, fresh and good in appearance.
4. It should neither be very hot nor absolutely cold.
5. Water should be avoided at least 15 minutes before food. The quantity of water after food should be small. Let it be drunk often.
6. Heavy (Guru) food should be taken in a limited quantity.
7. Heavy food should not be taken at night. The proper time of night meal is two to three hours before going to bed. After night meal, it is better to go for a short walk, of say hundred steps.
8. Heavy work or exercise should be avoided after food.
9. After meals, heavy mental or physical work should be avoided. Some rest is advisable for proper digestion of food.

With these simple tips you would be able to manage your weight in a right way.

8 superfoods for shedding weight

It's time for a new slim-down funda: Eat more to weigh less. Eating the right foods help you shed weight by increasing your calorie burn and cutting down food cravings.

1. Eggs : Dig in to eggs, yolks and all: Eggs do not harm your heart, they can help you trim inches. Women on a low-calorie diet who ate an egg with toast and jelly each morning lost twice as much weight as those who had a bagel breakfast with the same number of calories but no eggs, a study from Louisiana State University in Baton Rouge reports. Egg protein is filling, so you eat less later in the day.

2. Oats : "Oatmeal has the highest satiety ranking of any food," Grotto says. Unlike many other carbohydrates, oats—even the instant kind—digest slowly, so they have little impact on your blood sugar."

3. Lentils : Lentils are a great tummy flattener. "They're high in protein and soluble fibre, two nutrients that stabilise blood sugar levels," says Tanya Zuckerbrot, R.D., author of The F-Factor Diet (Putnam Adult). Eating them helps prevent insulin spikes that cause your body to create excess fat, especially in the abdominal area."

4. Apples : An apple a day can keep weight gain at bay, finds a study from Penn State University at University Park. People who chomped an apple before a pasta meal ate fewer calories overall than those who had a different snack. Apples are high in fibre—4 to 5 grams each—which makes them filling. Plus, the antioxidants in apples may help prevent metabolic syndrome, a condition marked by excess belly fat or an "apple shape."

5. Chillies : A great reason to spice up your meals: You'll increase your metabolism. A compound in chillies called capsaicin has a thermogenic effect, meaning it causes the body to burn extra calories for 20 minutes after you eat the chillies. Plus, you can't gulp down spicy food. Eating slowly gives your brain time to register that your stomach is full, so you won't overeat.

6. Yogurt : Dietitians often refer to plain yogurt as the perfect food. With its trifecta of carbs, protein and fat, it can stave off hunger by keeping blood sugar levels steady. In a study from the University of Tennessee, people on a low-calorie diet that included yogurt lost 61 per cent more fat overall and 81 per cent more belly fat than those on a similar plan but without yogurt.

7. Parmesan : Women who had one serving of whole milk or cheese daily were less likely to gain weight over time, a study in The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition finds. Lowfat-dairy fans didn't experience the same benefit. Whole dairy may have more conjugated linoleic acid, which might help your body burn fat.

8. Olive oil : Like avocados, olive oil has healthy fat that increases satiety, taming your appetite. But that's hardly its only slimming feature. Research shows it has anti-inflammatory properties.

How to keep heat at bay

Eating the right food is the perfect way to stay agile, lively and upbeat even during the harsh sweltering summers.

Summers have arrived and we might commonly experience our body temperatures rise, and suffre acidity, bloating & lethargy.

I fthe water intake is inadequate, body temperature can soar high and even lead to a heat stroke. It'll thus be wise to eat foods that keep body cool.

Foods that help you bring down the heat include:
Onions: Raw onions are great to cool the system. Have them as part of salad or chutney.

Mango: Raw mangoes are ideal to prevent sunstrokes and diarhoea. They are a source of VitaminC and prevent the loss of excessive salts, andiron from the body.

Spices: Spices such as poppy seeds, cardamom, sandalwood, fennel and saffron are cooling agents.

Raisins: Soaked black raisins are beneficial when had with an equal mix of cold milk and water.

Gulukand: This cooling preserve made from rose petals and sugar, fights fatigue, lethargy, muscular aches and heat related conditions.

Fuel up with fluids: Drink more than 8-10 glasses of water. You cna have cocunut water, fresh fruit juices, buttermilk, aam panna, thandai and buttermilk.

Increase intake of fruits and vegetables
Most fruits and vegetables including cucumber, water melon, jackfruit, grapes and pineapple help hydrate.

Must Follow:
Follow a vegetarian diet.
Don't eat more than 1 mango a day.
Avoid using garam masala, methi seeds, mustard seeds, red chillies in your daily cooking as this aggravate vata in the body during summers.
Cut down on caffeinated beverages as they dehydrate your body.
Avoid sour, spicy, too much oily foods.
Avoid papayas as they are known to heat up the body.

Relief from a Back Attack

According to law of physics the heavier the something is, the more often you'll have to move it.
Trying to move the suddenly immovable is the number one cause of back problems. Your twist, puish, turn, bend, lift, punch and strain in ways you never thought possible are the results of the back pain.

So if experinces the pain, there are things that can get you back from a painful attack.

Relief from a Back AttackBack pain comes in two forms, acute and chronic. Acute pain comes on suddenly and intensely. It's the kind you usually experience from doing something you shouldn;t be doing or from doing it in the wrong way. The pain can be from sprains, starins or pulls on muscles in your back. It can hurt like crazy for several days but you can be pain free without any lasting effects by following self help tips.

Get of your feet.Your back will thank you for it. The first thing you should do is get some bed rest.

Put your pain on IceThe best way to cool down an acute pain is with ice. For best results try ice massage. Put an ice pack on the site of the pain and massage the spot for 7 to 8 minutes. Do this for a day or two.

Try some Heat Relief
After the first day or two of ice switch to heat. take a soft towel and put it in basin of very warm water. Wring it well and flatten it so that there are no creases in it. Lie chest down with pillows under your hips and ankles and fold the towel across the painful part of your back. Put some plastic wraps over that, then put a heating pad turned on medium on top of the palstic. This creates moist heat and will help reduce muscle spasms.

Note: It's ok to use both methods ie heat and cold. Do n30min of ice, then 30 min of heat and keep repeating the cycle.

Stretch to smooth a spasmGently bring your knees up from bed and to your chest. Once there, pu a little pressure on your knees. Stretch, then relax. repeat. Stretching will help the muscle calm down sooner than just waiting for it to calm down on its own.

Roll out of bedWhen you roll out of bed do it carefully and slowly. You cna minimise the pain of getting out of bed by slidingto the edge of the bed. Once there keep your back rigid and then let your legs come off the bed first. That motion will act like a springboard, lifting your upper body straight up off the bed.

Car Seat ComfortDoes your back drive you crazy every time you buckle up? it could be that what you're sitting on is the seat of your problem. Adjust lumbar support and adjust the support down as low as it goes. Buy a cushion of high resiliency foam.

Relieving Pain That Lasts and LastsFor some people, back pain is a part of everyday life. For whatever reason, it just lingers on and on for what can seem like an eternity. Some suffer from recurring pain: an little movement can set in motion. This is called chronic pain.

Tips for this kind of pain would be published in my next post. Keep in touch and stay free of back pain.