Sleep is one of the three pillars that support our edifice of health; the other two being diet and lifestyle. Managing your waking and sleep time routine as per the tenets of ayurveda can help you balance your doshas.
Rituals before bed time
Ayurveda explains that there are seven types of sleep:
- Natural sleep
- Sleep due to illness
- Sleep due to imbalance of the mental faculties
- Sleep due to imbalance in physical body
- Sleep due to aggravation of kapha dosha
- Sleep due to imbalance in tamas state.
Of these, natural sleep is regarded as paramount, which habitually arises from exhaustion of the physical and mental arena.
Drinking a glass of warmed and sweetened milk [preferably buffalo milk] with a pinch of balancing herbs like cardamom, turmeric, saffron or dry ginger powder helps you sleep sound.
Have a fixed routine before bedtime, like listening to soft music or reading. This signals the body to get ready for sleep. Activities like reading and meditation promote tranquility and peace of mind, a great aid for restful sleep.
Limit your intake of oily, spicy and heavy-to-digest meals before going to bed as this interferes in the natural pattern of sleep.
Massage your scalp and the soles of your feet, with a little oil [preferably sesame oil] just before you sleep.
Spend some time with your kids or family members, before going to bed.
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