Women's Health In Ayurveda
Ayurveda teaches that to maintain health we must live in alignment with the cycles in nature. There are universal practices for men and women; and additional practices reserved for women.
The ayurvedic practices for women help to strengthen her intuition, protect emotional equilibrium, enhance fertility, and maintain hormonal balance. In general the ayurvedic practices for women are broken into 4-primary categories.
The Solar Practices - Daily Ayurvedic Lifestyle
The word ‘dinacharya’ — ‘dina’ means day and ‘acharya’ means to follow, refers to the daily practices outlined in ayurvedic lifestyle. Dinacharya is following the path of the day. The path of the day is ruled by the sun. The human being is a small model of the universe. What exists within nature can be observed within each person. The suns strength peaks in the sky midday, and also peaks within each person at that same time.
Practices that align the human biorhythm with the sun’s cycle include: rising with the sun, eating the largest meal midday when the sun is strongest, eating the smallest meal for dinner when the sun is strongest. These practices strengthen circadian rhythm function and align our rhythms with the earth’s cycle.
For women and men, the solar practices: strengthen circadian rhythm function, enhance equanimity, strengthen digestion and immunity, balance food craving, and cleanse the physical body.
Begin by favoring your largest meal midday during the lunch period.
The Lunar Practices - Monthly Ayurvedic Lifestyle
The lunar practices align a women’s energetic cycle with the moon. Through the course of a month, it is natural for a woman to wax and wane. Conversely, it would be unnatural for a woman to remain on a constant equilibrium emotionally, intuitively or physically. To honor and enhance her natural genetic makeup, she can align with the moon cycle. In so doing, she will align her menses with the moon cycle, strengthen her intuition and enhance her fertility. Specific practices, that are easy to do, will align her menses with the moon cycle so that she is menstruating with the new moon and ovulating with the full moon.
Begin by practicing a method of introspection with the new moon and celebration during the full moon.
The Sacred Window - Postpartum Ayurvedic Lifestyle
For 42-days after a woman gives birth she is in what is considered the ‘sacred window.’ The sacred window is a time of heightened vulnerability when a woman is naturally predisposed to achieve higher states of consciousness and enlightenment, but she is also more vulnerable to disease and imbalance. There are important practices she must observe (diet, herbs, massage with specific oils) that will help to enhance spiritual development and minimize imbalance.
Begin by choosing an easy to digest diet of cooked foods and nourishing soups.
When a woman reaches menopause, the energy that was once directed from the moon to the ovum redirects itself to the woman’s mind. At this time, nature is most supporting her to achieve enlightenment. There are specific practices that can help to minimize uncomfortable menopause symptoms such as specific diet, herbs, and meditation.
Begin by developing intuition and self-mastery through meditation, yoga or Qi Gong.