3 Tools to Start the New Year

3healthytoolsnew year

Of course I want everyone to go deeper with self care, because this is what I want for myself, and our lovely vata imbalanced planet. However, people often ask me to recommend “3 easy things I can start with.”

I used to put off that question with “it’s not that simple.”
But maybe it is. Maybe a few simple tools, well incorporated, can make you feel better.
And maybe that’s the beginning of a deeper journey (hopefully).

So, finally, here it is; my recommendation for un-intimidating, un-overwhelming tools to begin with.

1. Tongue Scraper (click to find in our Herbacy)

Once you use a tongue scraper, you’ll never feel like your mouth is fully clean without one! It takes literally a few seconds during your brush-teeth-routine, and the benefits are multifold: oral hygiene, better breath, fresher feeling in your mouth, improved taste perception. Additionally, you’ll start noticing the day to day variations in your tongue, and this will make you more aware of what your body needs. The amount and color of the coating on your tongue can reveal the state of the digestive system. Check out Tongue Reading 101 for some basics. I import my favorite copper tongue scrapers. They last forever (I’ve had mine for over 5 years), don’t rust (like the stainless steel ones), and the copper is a natural anti-inflammatory. (The plastic ones don’t work well, although I’m not sure why—they just don’t feel the same or get off as much coating.)

2. Oil Pulling Oil (click to find in our Herbacy)

Banyan’s Daily Swish is a new favorite of mine. I’ve been oil pulling for about 5 years now, and have tried many different types of oil. For the most part, I would use, and recommend, whatever organic oils were in my kitchen and just choose the oil based on it’s healing properties (e.g. coconut oil on my more pitta days, sesame on my more vata days). Then, after trying an overpriced “oil pulling” oil at my local health food store, I started getting fancy by adding essential oils to my oil (fennel, spearmint, and neem were all additions that supported the functions of my mouth and glands).

Banyan took this a step further, and cooked herbs into the oil as well; of course they are herbs that are also supportive: guduchi, triphala, and fennel. Guduchi is a powerful anti-inflammatory and immune support. Triphala also supports the immune system, and that’s important considering the specialized immune functions of the mouth (which we often forget about). Fennel is a lovely support for the salivary glands, and gums. Triphala supports rejuvenation of gum tissue and detoxification of the lymph nodes in the head and neck area. All prevent accumulation, decay and infection.

The combination of the sesame and coconut oils makes this a Vata-Pitta balancing tool, which everyone needs today. We all run acidic and depleted.  The act of the oil pulling itself flushes the oral cavity glands and circulation and lymph which helps to keep tissues fresh and prevent rot.  Here is a video on the benefits of, and how to oil pull.

3. Vata-Kapha Daily Oil (click to find in our Herbacy)

This is the season of feeling dry and depleted and accumulating a few pounds from all the sugar we’ve been craving. Yup, that’s the feeling of vata and kapha accumulating in your being. (Here’s some other signs of vata imbalance and kapha imbalance.)

This oil is sumptuous and unctuous, and will feed your hungry skin. It’s edible also because there are no preservatives or binders (which every product in the health food market has to have because of FDA rules). Besides having the benefit of well-nourished skin, the herbs cooked into the oils are delivered straight to your bloodstream within 20 minutes of slathering up. Of course, we’ve chosen a blend of herbs that are rejuvenating while preventing stagnation in the body. The effects aren’t super drastic. A few months will go by and you’ll just notice that your baseline is in a better place.

You simply oil up after your shower, massaging the body from the periphery towards the heart. It’s quick, it puts you in touch with your body, and it’s a daily act of self love.

We keep these in amber glass bottles so that the oil can be easily warmed by placing the bottle in a pot of hot water (or the basin of your sink/shower). Warm oil, like warm food, is more digestible and feels amazing.

You can add essential oils of your choice to add benefits and customize your scent.

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