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National Nutrition Week: Exploring The Ayurvedic Connection Between Emotions, Body Organs And Nutrition

National Nutrition Week is observed to spread awareness about good nutrition, and health. This week, let us understand the little known ayurvedic connection between food, body organs and emotions.

There is a popular saying- Jaisa Ann Waisa Mann that translates to what you eat is what becomes of your mind. This National Nutrition Week, let us understand the little known connection between food, body organs and emotions, from Dr Abhishek Kumar, senior expert in Ayurvedic treatment of lifestyle disorders at The Art of Living's Sri Sri Tattva Panchakarma centre.

Connections Between Organs And Emotions

Global spiritual teacher and humanitarian, Gurudev Sri Sri Ravi Shankar says, "A strong mind can carry a weak body, but a weak mind cannot carry even a strong body."

Brain And Emotions

The brain is one of the largest and most complex organs in the human body. It is made up of more than 100 billion nerves that communicate in trillions of connections called synapses. As per Ayurveda, Prana Vayu and Tarpak cough are located in the head region. Prana Vayu is responsible for inhalation and exhalation of breath and that's why Pranayama affects the brain. Studies have shown that Pranayama has tremendous benefits in delaying brain ageing. Emotions related to the brain are fear, happiness, love, anger, worries, calmness and gratitude, and negative emotions linked to the region are worrying, anxiety, confusion, and heaviness.

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Remedies: Meditation, breathing techniques, head massage, Shirodhara, Nasya technique, consuming nuts and seeds, Bhrami and Shankhapushpi can help improve brain function and overcome these negative emotions related to the brain. The pituitary gland is called the master gland. Shirodhara, a technique in which oil is poured on the forehead for about 30-40 minutes, brings tremendous calmness and cures insomnia. Ayurveda says the nose is the gateway to the brain. Nasya is a similar technique only here oil is poured through the nose. It helps cure psychosomatic disorders.

Heart

As per yogic science the fourth chakra i.e, Anahata chakra is connected to the heart region. The Prana Vayu and Sadhak Pitta (a type of pitta or fire element) are also located in this part. The flow of blood is also said to be connected to certain emotions. Emotions related to this area are love, care, joy, sadness, happiness, surprise, thoughtfulness. If you have negative sentiments, the heart is affected and you can get heartburns, chest pains, coronary artery disease, heart attacks, hypertension and stress.

Remedies: The best way to tackle these emotions is meditation or you can practice Anulomvilom pranayama (alternate nostril breathing). Consuming almonds, walnuts, cow milk, whole grains. Ayurvedic medicine Arjuna and Triphala work best to balance emotions in the heart region.

Liver And Gallbladder

The liver as per Ayurveda is a site for pitta and is responsible for metabolism, storage of fat, balancing your sugar, detoxifying your system. Here fire and water elements are dominant. Emotions affecting this region are anger, anxiety, frustration, bitterness, ambition and irritation. Imbalance here will cause headache, fatigue, skin issues, ingestion, weakened immune system, constipation.

Remedies: Balance pitta dosha(fire element), drink plenty of water, consume sweet fruits, leafy vegetables, ginger, fennel, coriander and black currant.

Lungs

They are part of the respiratory system and two bioenergies- Vata (air element) and Kapha (earth and water element) are present in this region. Emotions affecting the lungs are grief, sadness, depression. This can lead to cough, congestion, breathlessness, pain, low immunity.

Remedies: One can improve these emotions by doing the breathing exercise, bhastrika pranayama or bellow breathing, consuming cardamom, pepper, grapes, ginger, apricot on regular basis.

Uterus

It helps in nurturing the foetus. Suppression of emotions can cause gynaecological problems. Emotions affecting the uterus are insecurity, uncertainty, guilt or trauma. This can cause irregular menstrual cycles, cramps, PCOD, fibroids, heavy bleeding.

Remedies: The best way to get over these emotions is through yoga (butterfly pose) and meditation. Expressing your feelings, exercise, padmasadhna (a sequence of asanas) and intake of cardamom, ginger, Shatavari, Brahmi, Shankhapushpi and Shirodhara technique is beneficial.

Kidney And Bladder

These organs balance the fluid in the body. Vata and Kapha dosha is located in this region. The kidney helps in regulating and filtering minerals from the blood and remove waste. It maintains bone health and regulation of blood pressure. Emotions relating to this region Fear, weak willpower, loneliness, isolation and insecurity. These are related to frequent urination, UTI (Urinary Tract Infection), Kidney stones, lower back pain, hair loss and night sweats.

Remedies: Stay hydrated, consume garlic and onion, apple, strawberry, grapes, basil, punarnava, pomegranates and kidney beans. Avoid smoking and alcohol.

Knee Joint

It is responsible for flexion and extension and movements. Emotions affecting knee joints stubbornness, inflexibility, absence of love

Remedies: Regular exercise, balanced nutrition, flexibility in nature, consume turmeric, ashwagandha, cow ghee, drumsticks, ajwain.

Other organs and their emotional connection

Spleen: worrying and nervousness - mothers with a young child are always worried.

Hips: Fear, Sadness, Worry; Skin Anger, Stress; Lower Back Relationship problems and anxiety, insecurity; Stomach Nervousness and worries; Large intestine grief and anxiety; Small intestine Joy and happiness; Pancreases Fear, guilt, hopelessness.

Remedies to overcome the emotions: Acceptance of the situation, correcting your ahar, vihar, vichar, meditation, mantra chanting, panchakarma, exercise, have a positive approach in life, increase sattva, find a path of expression.

(The article is contributed by Ayurveda expert Kaustubh Sharma)

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