By Radhika Iyer Talati
New Delhi– Established about 4,500 years ago, the Indian culture is among the world’s oldest cultures in the world. Several Indian scriptures describe India as ‘Sa Prathama Sanskrati Vishvavara’ or, the first and the supreme culture of the world.
Traditional Indian practices and ways of living have been found to prolong one’s life span, help sustain a healthy life, and live a disease-free happy life. These traditions that have been passed down generations, from our great grandmothers to us, have their own significance and importance. While the lives we live today is far from what life was like 50 years ago, a lot of what was needs to be preserved. Listed below are a few ancient rituals that help one lead a healthy lifestyle, and also help develop a deep meaningful relationship with nature:
* Drink water from earthen or copper pots: Microplastics that have now found their way into our bloodstream causing more harm than we could ever imagine! Drinking water from earthen pots and copper utensils boosts your immune system, facilitates digestion, strengthens joints and muscles, and helps improve blood circulation in the body.
* Walking barefoot: Fancy footwear and shoes all the time? We’d advise you otherwise. Back in the day, there was this rule wherein no one wore footwear inside the house. With changing times, diabetes, and other ailments, this is not a viable option for many. That being said, you should try walking barefoot while there’s still dew that is, the first thing after you wake up. It helps alleviate joint pain, decreases muscle tension, and even lowers stress levels. All you need is a break from your regular footwear– just once a day, and you’ll see this boost of energy almost immediately.
* Wearing Gold and Silver Jewellery: Piercing a new born child’s ears shortly after its birth is a tradition all Indians abide by. Wearing gold and silver jewellery has been known to regulate body temperature, reduce anxiety and stress, and also help ameliorate one’s mood. We recommend wearing metal jewellery and ditch plastic that does nothing but add to all that toxic waste.
* Eating with your hands: In trying to mimic the west, we have equated using cutlery to be more civil. This, however, is not the case. In ancient India, both the King and his subjects ate their food using their hands. It does not just increase the ‘Prana’ or life energy within oneself, but also satiates one’s hunger– brings forth humility and respect for the food served.
* Inculcating the habit– Eating early: Ayurveda and its theories suggest eating food as early as 8 p.m, a couple of hours before going to sleep by 10 or 11 p.m. This discipline to eat early and sleep at least 3 hours after the last meal can help one stay aloof of all gastrointestinal and digestion problems.
* Practicing ‘Shauch’ or Cleanliness: Reiterating the importance of clean living now more than ever, we should understand the relevance of taking a bath every day, keeping our shoes outside the house, and practicing sanitisation.
* Fasting: The holy month of Ramzan and the sobriety one has during the Navratras. Do you think there’s no science here? Indian traditions include fasts every once in a while. Not only do they cleanse one’s system of all the toxins, but also give the digestive system a much-needed break. Fasting can help speed up metabolism, aid in weight loss, and even improve longevity.
* Practising Yoga: There’s no underestimating the power of Yoga and meditation! 30 minutes dedicated to Yoga each day– 4 rounds of Kapalbhati and Surya Namaskar in addition to deep meditation and healthy eating. This is all you need to keep most diseases at bay and lead a healthy life.
(Radhika Iyer Talati, Entrepreneur and Founder of Beauty by Anahata, Yogini, Mountaineer and Philanthropist)