Dear Beautiful Soul,
I was laying low on my kitchari cleanse the weekend before last and stumbled upon a new show on health and wellness led by Dr. Sanjay Gupta. Dr. Gupta is an American doctor of Indian descent whose new TV series on CNN examines the health, longevity, and happiness of other cultures around the world.
The episode I caught explored India and it covered yoga and Ayurveda (I think you know I am devoted to both!), as well as a martial art called Kalari. It was truly fascinating, not only because these systems are thousands of years old, but they are being embraced in extremely large numbers around the world and modern science is being used to prove incredible results.
Ayurveda – the “science of life” – is a preventative form of medicine aimed at keeping the individual healthy and harmonious before diseases begin. Dr. Gupta interviews various Ayurvedic doctors who explain the doshas, and how we are all a combination of the 5 elements (earth, water, fire, air, and space). He also shows the creation of herbal formulas in large quantities in their Ayurvedic labs. It's amazing to see and these formulas come from very old Ayurvedic texts that have been used for centuries. Diet is central to maintaining health and with different spices and herbs he shows how Ayurvedic food is medicinal and healing.
One Indian town Dr. Gupta visited has a collective goal of keeping all its citizens healthy through the regular practice of yoga. The local teacher leading the movement offers free classes for all. One man got completely free of his blood pressure medication after only 7 months of regular yoga practice!
Some amazing statistics: Practicing yoga reduces your chances of a hospital visit by more than 40% in one year and can save you as much as $23,000 per year in medical costs. At one university in India, they are prescribing specific poses (which they have studied and monitored with proven results) for a variety of medical conditions. Literally, prescribing asanas (poses) to treat all kinds of serious ailments.
The show is called Chasing Life and episode 2 covers India. I highly encourage you to look it up and enjoy the amazing findings on the benefits of both yoga and Ayurveda. As someone who has known without a doubt that both of these systems have the power to help us live better lives, it's nothing short of awe-inspiring to see the scientific proof. Enjoy!
Love & Yoga,