- Get good sleep! I have been going to bed by 9pm every night without fail over the last couple of weeks. Some nights I have even fallen asleep as early as 8pm. The time change throws us for a loop, so I have been sticking to routine to help me through this transition. Try a short floor practice with slow deep breathing to calm the nervous system if you cannot sleep. A hot bath followed by the application of body oil is also very soothing and supports sleep.
- Drink water all day long. If you are a vata or kapha type, consider sipping on hot water throughout the day (this may feel too heating for pittas). While I never drink cold water, sipping hot water is a new habit for me and it's helping me to take in more water every day. It flushes the digestive system and helps to cleanse naturally.
- Eat probiotic foods every day. I have been adding yogurt to warm cereals in the morning to replenish my gut with good bacteria. Most of our immunity lives in the gut, so gut health is essential. You can try other forms like sourkraut, miso soup, and kimchi.
- Exercise daily. Moving the body reduces stress and boosts immunity, especially when done outside in nature.
- Meditate. Meditation calms and clears the mind, reduces stress and boosts immunity. I meditate every morning at the same time for 20 minutes. Make a commitment and find a method.
- Take herbs every day. Chyavanprash is an Ayurvedic daily vitamin that boosts your system. Take a couple teaspoons full each day. You can also sip herbal teas appropriate to your constitution.
- Eat fresh foods that are in season. Foods that are in season and grown in close proximity to where you live contain natural microbes that supply the gut with good bacteria. Eating foods rich in prana that are whole and fresh support good digestion and optimal absorption. I know it's challenging to shop at the moment; now might be a time to plan for the future by prepping for a garden: begin by planning your veggie plot, buying seeds online, germinating them in your window.
About Nikki Estrada
Nikki Estrada has been in the yoga scene for more than twenty years. She leads workshops, teacher training and immersions nationwide. Nikki began her formal training in India, focusing on Ashtanga, a very physically challenging style of yoga. She is currently a senior yoga teacher and educator in the San Francisco Bay Area. Nikki's Vinyasa-based classes are a synthesis of her years of yogic and Ayurveda study and personal experience, with an emphasis on spirituality, intelligent alignment, meditation, and living life more joyfully. Her videos can be found on www.yogainternational.com. More information about Nikki can be found at www.nikkiestradayoga.com. She resides in northern California with her husband and two daughters. Use code NikkiGift for a free month of online yoga.