The summer of 2016 has been the hottest ever all over the planet, so it comes as no suprise that many of us experienced fever or inflammations of all kinds. Ayurveda recipes provide amazing solutions with herbal anti-inflammatories. They are extremely simple to use and just as economical. Yes, you guessed well: turmeric and mint.
About turmeric as an Ayurvedic recipe
Turmeric is one of the oldest plants on the planet and it has been used in cooking and as medicine for just as long. Turmeric contains qualities that balance the three doshas because of its dry, pungent and bitter tastes. It supports detoxificationof the liver; promotes a healthy response to allergens and a healthy immune response; assists digestion; helps purify the blood; and promotes health of the lungs, the joints, blood circulation and the nervous system.
Unfortunately, we are starting to see articles on the Internet that discredits it or curcumin, the very components that are anti-inflammatory AND anti-oxidant. I asked Dr. Shamna Prajith*, my ayurvedic doctor in India, about it. She said: “Turmeric is processed in boiling hot water then dried and powdered before being marketed. The best way to use tumeric powder is to include it in your cooking as it has a detoxifying action. It even detoxifies toxins from vegetables that are treated with chemicals (meaning non-organic veggies).”
The first course of action in case of inflammation, regardless of the form it takes, is to eat a paste of turmeric with honey. Also avoid tomatoes, spinach, citrus as well as other heating and acidic foods or drinks, eg. ginger tea.
3 tbsp of turmeric
2 tbsp honey
Mix well until you have a uniform paste.
Eat 1 generous teaspoon of it three or four times a day until fever or inflammation is gone. There is no age restriction.
Recipe for fever:
Recently, a close friend took to her bed with high fever. Her body’s natural response of sweating did not kick in, so her temperature increased dangerously. Dr. Shamna’s provided two simple recipes.
Two recipes for fever
Recently, a close friend took to her bed because of fever. Because her body’s perspiration reflex did not kick in to cool off her body, the fever kept increasing dangerously. Dr. Shamna recommended the following two recipes.
1. Cooling paste recipe
Pulverize a bunch of fresh mint with a bit of water in your blender.
Squeeze the juice out.
Mix 1 tbsp of the mint juice in 2 tbsp of turmeric powder.
Blend well and add mince juice if needed to get a thin sauce texture.
Apply on the forehead and directly under the ankles.
Let it dry.
Once dry, remove with water that is cool or at room temperature. DO NOT USE HOT WATER, that would bring the temperature back up.
2. Tea to induce sweating
2-3 pinches dry ginger powder
10-12 fresh tulsi leaves or 1 tsp dry
8- 10 fresh mint leaves
2-3 cloves of garlic
1 glass of water reducing it to half a glass
Add honey or jaggery.
Works fast and efficiently. Drink 1 cup every 2-3 hours.
Massage oil recipe for a slipped disk
Shortly after my friend recovered, I got up from the lunch table when my back locked. A familiar and unwelcomed sign that a lumbar disk had slipped again. I was unable to sit or walk for several days. Given an unsucessful research to find a chiropractor who does home visits and unable to drive anywhere, options were needed. With Dr. Shamna’s advice for ice packs, plenty of rest, liniment, and no stretching plus treatments from friends (fascia therapy, full body massage and energy treatments), I can now sit and walk for brief periods of time. The recipe for the “massage oil” below provided tremendous relief.
Basic recipe (I ate 1 tsp of it before the oil was added)
Add oil from a yarrow maceration to obtain a silky sauce consistency.
Massage the whole body.
Make sure that you use old sheets on the massage table. They will be stained colourfully but permanently.
Repeat massages at 2 or 3 day intervals for a week.
Don’t prepare more than one batch at a time as by next day as the oil separates and the mix hardens beyond use.
This oil not only gradually decreases inflammation but also eases pain and nervous tension.
Recipes for hot temper
– do yoga sheetali breath for 3 minutes or deep diaphragm breathing
– drink plenty of lavender-chamomile tea, aloe vera gel and coconut water
– eat coconut and fresh cucumbers
– meditate daily
– self-massage daily with coconut oil.
Simply apply it gently for 3 to 11 minutes.
Rinse off with an old face cloth and warm water. Use an oil for your dosha and a cotton ball to remove any remaing yellow pigment from your skin.
Recipe for Golden milk
Simply add 1 tsp of the basic recipe and melt it in a cup of warm milk (animal or vegetal). Do not allow the milk to boil
Add 1 tsp of ghee.
Golden milk taken a half hour before milk promotes restful sleep and acts as a tonic. It can be drunk when apetite is low with the addition of a bit of fresh ginger or pepper, but avoid in case of inflammation.
Red lentil dahl recipe
This article would be inclomplete without at least one recipe to delight your palate. So here is a delicious main course dish.
* Remove in case of inflammation
1 cup red lentils
6 cups water or vegetable broth
1/2 cup coconut milk
4 tsp olive oil, ghee, or both
*1 – 2 tomatoes (ripe)
Curry leaves, fresh or dry (optional)
3/4 cup finely chopped leeks and zucchini or celery
*1 inch piece fresh grated ginger
2 dashes hing (asafoetida)
1/2 tsp coriander seeds
1 tsp cumin seeds
5 cardamon pods
1/2 tsp turmeric powder (more in case of inflammation)
1/2 tsp chili powder
1/2 lime juice
Handful chopped fresh cilantro
*Black pepper to taste
Sea salt to taste
1 stick of lemongrass (optional)
Gently sauté the spices in oil. Add powders last to avoid burning.
Add vegetables and blanch them, then add the liquids.
Bring to a boil, then simmer for 5-6 minutes. Stir it with the stick of lemongrass.
Pour in a bowl. Decorate with fresh cilantro
Serve with basmati rice and vegetables. Gives 6 to 7 portions.
*Dr. Shamna Prajith holds a 5-year Bachelors’ degree in Ayurveda from the Parassinikkadavu Ayurveda Medical College, Kannur, Kerala, India. She offers medical consultations on Skype to international patients.
After posting this blog article, Dr Shamna wrote the following on the Face to Grace Facebook page:
Shamna Prajith “Good work..
Turmeric is really wonderful herb
Another easy but effective use is in cut n wound healing..
When you get a cut or wound on your body just apply some turmeric powder locally wound heals in 2 days, no infection no inflammation…
It’s antidiabetic.. 1-2 teaspoon turmeric powder + 4 amla (goose berry) juice early morning in empty stomach regularly. Gradually u can say goodbye to insulin pills….
Then comes it’s antiallergic properties… Very effective in allergic respiratory conditions like allergic rhinitis, common cold, cough etc.. can also inhale smoke of turneric- a good expectorant. This smoke also cures ear infections.
Turmeric also is anti cancerous… Very useful in present scenario where we r much exposed to many carcinogens…
Most lovely thing for us ladies in connection with turmeric is u can always put it in your beauty kit.. its application on skin improves complexion, reduces aging by collagen deposit, cures urticaria n itchings….
for Indians it’s a ceremony applying turmeric whole over your body n bath day before marriage etc
But if u r a skin sensitive person apply with milk of rose water to reduce its hot property….”