You cannot go to Kerala and not experience its Ayurveda and it’s a privilege when you can do so surrounded by backwaters. Imagine sitting in the spacious spa room with water and greenery soothing your mind too. When I reached Kollam I was drenched for 3 days in the unexpected rains of Trivandrum and had cold and fever. This is something that we travelers face quite often, At Kollam, we stayed at ITC’s WelcomHotel Raviz Resort & Ayurveda Spa – a beautiful resort on the Southern edge of vast Ashtamudi Lake and I took this opportunity to ask their doctor how can Ayurveda help us. Here are the tips from Dr. Vishnuraj Prakash on How Ayurveda can help travelers.
Ayurveda Tips for Travelers
Ayurveda works on the principle of three Doshas in our body and it is the imbalance of these that causes disease. Travel brings in a lot of changes in the body like a change in weather, food, water, time zone, and we need to make sure that the doshas remain balanced through these changes to stay healthy.
Jet Lag – It happens when you travel East-West or West-East i.e. when you cross time zones and body loses its circadian rhythm. It never happens when you travel North-South – no matter how long the journey is. Common symptoms include loss of appetite, disturbed sleep, headache, and constipation. Now Solution is to drink lots of water as it not only hydrates the system but according to Ayurveda balances all the three doshas that tend to get disturbed due to travel. He, in fact, said a beautiful line about water – to highlight what water means to human life.
“Jeevanam Tarpanam Hridyam Hladi Budhi Prabodhanam
Tanvavyaktha Rasam mrishtam sheetham shuchyamruthopamam”
(Ref: Ashtanga Snagraham: Suthrasthanam)
Next, he suggested having Trifala Churna – that pacifies all aggravated doshas in the body and is specifically helpful in maintaining the digestive system and hence the bowel movements.
People traveling from Hot to Cold climates increase their Kapha Dosha. So they should eat and drink only warm food. They should have a bath in warm (not hot) water, let the body cool down on its own after a bath and then wipe it before stepping out. This creates a natural shield for the body in cold climate. Add pepper to food to improve digestion.
People traveling from cold to hot climates tend to have Vata-Pitta imbalance. These people have a natural tendency to go into the sun and that aggravates the Pitta further and this can be seen in the form of symptoms like excessive thirst, sunburns, and spots on skin due to sunburn. The doctor suggested such travelers should not hit the sun as soon as the land. For some time they should move in the shade and let the body balance itself for the new environment. The body should be gradually exposed to the sun. Applying some light oil like coconut oil on the skin can help. They should drink lukewarm water and not ice cold water. Choose pepper over chilies, they are easier to digest.
- Drink warm water as much as possible.
- Always have body bath with lukewarm water and head bath with normal water.
- Take Ashwagandha Churna – that helps augment energy required while also helps relax.
- Take a warm glass of milk before retiring at night.
- For common cold – as soon as you feel a sensation of it – have tea with tulsi leaves or a bit of pepper when Tulsi is not available
I am going to try some of these on my next travels.
Recommend you to read following travel blog on Places to visit in Kerala.