New You programme, week 3: rejuvenate
Welcome to week three of Pukka’s New You wellness programme, a month long plan to help your body prepare for the year ahead. In our third week we focus on the process of rejuvenation, helping us to feel our best.
We all want to feel great. Quite simply, life is more difficult when we don’t. To feel our best we need to constantly renew and replenish our health. This is the process of rejuvenation.
Following rejuvenating practices hastens recovery from disease, improves your mind and intellect, promotes longevity and delays the symptoms of old age - ‘to rejuvenate’ literally means ‘to make young again’. Some gerontologists think that we should and easily could live to be over a hundred. Wouldn’t that be amazing? But successful rejuvenation requires an understanding of how your life works as one whole and how you can sustain it. Only then can your immunity, heart, digestion, hormones, nervous system and emotions dance together in one smooth waltz.
As it is said in Ayurveda ‘Rejuvenation brings you a long life, a sharp memory, intelligence, freedom from disease, youthfulness, beauty, a sweet voice, respect and brilliance’.
One measure of our health is how effectively the immune system works. We know that the majority of health imbalances affect our immunity in one way or another, and that immunity is also compromised by living a life where we give out more than we put back. If we want to turn back the clock – in other words, rejuvenate – we need to reverse this process of decline with regular ‘top-ups’ that help us to replenish. This can be a holiday, a yoga class, a massage or nourishing time with friends and family. But the real secret to rejuvenation is in your daily routine.
Prevention is paramount to avoid the degenerative cascade that can occur when the threshold of our health is breached. The foundation of prevention is an orderly routine that balances personal hygiene, nourishment, exercise, relaxation, creativity, wealth and love. You can therefore optimise your rejuvenation on a daily basis by regulating your lifestyle, diet, herbal supplements and emotional habits.
Rejuvenating your immunity will help to create a new you, the true you. And the New Year is the perfect time to start this.
Below are some suggestions to enhance your immunity and embrace a way of life which will help you rejuvenate.
- Give yourself a tonic. Golden Preserve is an incredible tonic jam, revered as an ‘elixir of life’ in Ayurveda and has been used for at least the last two thousand years to rejuvenate the body. Its sweet and nourishing properties build the quality and quantity of the tissues, which contributes to the strength of our inherent immunity. More specifically, this unique blend of herbs is used to protect, repair and tone the lungs, heart and reproductive system. Spread this delicious jam on toast or mix it into cooking for a warming uplift.
- Put some zing in your life. One of nature’s greatest gifts, ginseng is one of the best rejuvenating herbs. It is perfect when you’re feeling tired but should only be used to complement a healthy lifestyle. It lifts energy, nourishes the heart, tonifies immunity and reduces high blood sugar and cholesterol levels.
- Do a digital detox. Neuroscientists who observed 35 people that were totally cut off from their devices during an experiment in the Moroccan desert found some fascinating and compelling reasons why we need to disconnect at times. Their research showed that over the period of the experiment the subjects experienced more efficient sleep, enhanced memory, greater creativity and deeper friendships. So choose an hour, an afternoon or a day to turn off your phone, log out of social media and power down your computer and see what happens.
- Love your skin. It’s often been said if we look young, we feel young. If you want your skin to feel rejuvenated, trying rubbing a few drops of warm coconut oil into your face to lock in moisture. Do this once a day at nighttime for a week. Always choose certified organic cosmetics for your skin. Many non-organic cosmetics contain parabens as well as other compounds which are absorbed easily by the skin, with the body having no way of ridding itself of them. Look for an organic certification body symbol (such as the Soil Association’s) to ensure that what you are buying is definitely organic.
- Get some rest. Sleep is essential to the rejuvenation process but many of us go through periods in life where not getting enough of it. To ensure a good night’s rest, avoid caffeine in the afternoon, ensure you go to bed at roughly the same time each night and turn your bedroom into a den of tranquility (ie comfortable with no television or technology to excite the mind). Valerian and ashwaghanda (found in Pukka Night Time Tea and Pukka Night Time capsules respectively) are two well-known herbs which can help you have a peaceful night.
- Give Yoga Nidra a go. Yoga Nidra is a powerful relaxation meditation technique performed in the lying position. It is one of the most beloved of all the relaxation-meditation techniques in the world today. That’s because the technique is practical and easy to do and creates the deep rest and relaxation required for rejuvenation.
- Move it. Ensure you make movement part of your daily routine, even if it's just a walk at lunchtime around the office. More strenuous aerobic exercises such as running or cycling are great for getting you fit, but pilates and yoga will have a more calming and rejuvenating effect on your body.
- Boost your winter immunity. Ward off the New Year chills by boosting your immunity with winter wellness herbs such as ginger included in trikatu (with a mix of black pepper and long pepper to help to blow away the cold). The humble elderberry is also a wonderful seasonal wellbeing gem. Take it as a syrup as soon as you feel a chill coming on.