It's the season of colds and flus--all to often followed by chronic nasal and sinus congestion. Alandi student Katrina Debs offers some simple home remedies to help you breathe freely all winter long. To learn more about how to take care of yourself when congested, read here.
1. Turmeric honey – Mix 1 tsp turmeric with 1 tsp honey and eat twice a day.
2. Tulsi black pepper tea – Boil ¼ tsp black pepper in 1 ½ cup water for 5 minutes. Remove from the heat and add 1 tsp tulsi leaf, allowing it to steep for 10 minutes. Add 1 tsp honey and enjoy.
3. Take ½ tsp Mahasudarshan churna (powder) in hot water in the morning before breakfast. You can purchase it from Alandi’s pharmacy.
4. Ginger fenugreek CCF tea – Boil 1 tsp grated, fresh ginger with ½ tsp fenugreek seeds, ½ tsp cumin seeds, 1 tsp fennel seeds and 1 tsp coriander seeds in 4 cups of water until most of the seeds fall to the bottom of the pan (20 minutes). Strain.
5. Snort powdered herbs – Mix a tiny bit of equal parts calamus, tulsi and vidanga powders, and snort them. This loosens up stuck mucus.
7. Clove facial paste – see recipe below.
Ayurvedic Facial Paste
This wonderful facial paste helps the ‘local agni’ (metabolic action) of the sinuses to burn up the mucus, without you having to blow it out your nose. It simply dries it up! You may love this remedy so much that you add it permanently to your winter daily routine. Clove is categorized in Ayurveda as a cooling pungent.
1-2 tsp fine ground clove powder
a tiny bit of hot water, enough to make a paste
In a tiny bowl or cup, mix the clove powder with enough water to make a thin paste. Being careful not to get it in your nose or eyes, spread the paste on your sinuses--above your eyebrows and on your cheeks under your eyes. Within minutes you will begin to feel a tingling and possibly a burning sensation (this only lasts a couple of minutes). Remember that this is the herbs doing their work—don’t wash it off! Rinse the paste off when dry, carefully avoiding your mucous membranes. This is potent enough that you can leave it on the counter to dry for tomorrow and just add hot water to reinvigorate it.
*Contraindicated for those with high pitta symptoms (headache in temples, burning sensation anywhere on the body, red face, loose stool).
*This is the most basic version of this recipe, but one can make it other ways. For instance, you can add 1 part cardamom, 1 part dried ginger, and ½ part cinnamon powder to 1 part clove.
This piece was written by a student of the Alandi Ayurveda Gurukula in Boulder, Colorado. Learn more about studying ayurveda at our home school, or access your deep wellness with the support of our student practitioners in the Alandi Ayurveda Clinic.