Fast Tips to Fight Stress Using the Tools of Maharishi Ayurveda

"Brain cells create ideas. Stress kills brain cells. Stress is not a good idea," says a modern philosopher.

Maharishi Ayurveda experts emphasize this point. In the words of an ayurvedic expert from The Council of Maharishi Ayurveda Physicians, "Worry is like a rocking chair; it takes you back and forth, but doesn't get you anywhere,"

Here are four powerful time-tested tips from Maharishi Ayurveda to counteract stress:

1. Dont be a Time-Struggler

The human body is simply not suited to time struggle. Research strongly suggests that people who suffer from hurry sickness—the anxious feeling that there's never enough time—may be at increased risk of developing health problems such as high blood pressure and heart disease. Impatient clock-watching is also linked to hostility, resentment and sudden cardiac death.

Are you a time-struggler?

Take this simple test to find out. Just sit idle for five minutes, eyes closed. At the end of that time, analyze those five minutes. Were you restless, bored, anxious? Or calm, comfortable and relaxed? Did you open your eyes to check if five minutes were over yet? Did your shoulders and neck feel tense? Were you, in that period, able to filter out the noise of life and tune in to yourself? Your answers will give you all the clues you need.

Why this time-anxiety happens, says Maharishi Ayurveda, is because we lose connection with our innermost needs, and chase external goals such that we loose connection with the silent source within. The result: your body, mind and heart develop conflicting interests—the mind insists on going on while the body feels tired and the heart feels heavy. To reset your clock, therefore, you need to establish inner integration again. The practice of Transcendental Meditation has been shown by researchers to increase the capacity for intuitive thought -- a highly accurate inner compass, or inner ear. As the body, mind and heart become more integrated better choices and more balance ensue, as a natural balance between heart and mind is restored.

On a more physical level, stress generates deadly free radicals, and a host of other hormonal changes which wreak havoc on the brain, nervous system, heart and overall immunity. One fast answer from Maharishi Ayurveda, foods with high antioxidant content. These are foods or food supplements designed by nature to combat free radical damage. The antioxidant is Amrit Kalash is proven by modern scientific research to nourish the body and mind like no other antioxidant supplement ever has. The unique combination of rare herbs and fruits in this formulation beats back free radical damage caused by stress, improving immunity and restoring balance between mind, body and spirit.

2. Recreation is re-creation

Give yourself quiet time. The logic is simple: all life evolves, grows and is sustained through cycles of rest and activity. Rest is the basis of dynamic activity. It's there for you to see in the rhythm of the heart, and in the wheel of day and night, plant growth and all of life in fact.

Don't limit your recreation, because recreation is medicinal. Each time you come up with a brilliant idea or achieve a pivotal goal, reward yourself with something that pleases your senses and winds you down. Find creative ways to achieve your workload—eliminate unnecessary steps, avoid procrastination, prioritize, delegate. Each of these will free up some of your time and energy for more productive, creative work.

Most importantly, get good sleep. More than half of America is not sleeping well as we highlighted in our October newsletter. An uncomfortable night sets off a series of unhappy events - lowered appetite, digestion, irritation and fatigue. Performance suffers along with relationships, creativity and all of life.

Maharishi Ayurveda offers some wonderful ways to sleep better naturally: follow a regular bed-time, wind down an hour before you go to bed, do a warm oil self-massage everyday, or use a relaxing aroma oil such as Slumber Time to help you sleep.

Herbs like Indian Valerian and Muskroot are natural herbal sleep-aids with a calming influence and have been used in Ayurveda for centuries. Winter Cherry helps resistance to stress, and helps balance the mind and emotions. These and other rest-friendly herbs come together in Maharishi Ayurveda's Blissful Sleep formula, prepared in the traditional Ayurvedic way, using only the best-quality ingredients.

3. Work your body to rest your mind

It may sound contradictory, but exercising to get relaxation is effective and Ayurvedic. Simply walk, for starters. Even ten minutes everyday will show results. Walking puts you in touch with yourself, howsoever briefly.

Walk your pet, take out the trash, shovel snow, play Frisbee in the park - exercise in bite-sized chunks all day - and you will balance your physical as well as mental energies. Research indicates that the happiest, healthiest people at every age are those who exercise regularly. But - a word of caution from The Council of Maharishi Ayurveda Physicians: do not over-exercise. Ayurveda recognizes the concept of balaardh: bala means strength and ardh means half). That is, at any given time, use up to half your total individual energy, and conserve the rest.

4. Eat to live stress-free

Food can truly be your medicine. Fruits and vegetables are ace stress-fighters. Get five to nine servings of them each day, and they will offer you more than just complex carbohydrates and fiber. Rich in anti-oxidants, they beat back free-radical damage, cutting your susceptibility to stress, fatigue and disease.

The Council of Maharishi Ayurveda Physicians suggests eating foods that please your individual constitution. For example, if you are prone to ulcers and rashes, don't eat hot Chinese food. Stop eating when your body says "Enough!" Common-sense self-regulations like these will help you choose your foods wisely, leading to improved digestion and an overall feeling of well-being.

The Council also recommends using a variety of herbs and spices in everyday cooking. You'll be surprised how a pinch of turmeric or a dash of fennel can bring down tension levels and help the body assimilate nutrients better. The seemingly tiny grains of spices used in Indian cooking have big roles to play. Cumin and fennel, for instance, help build tissue and flush out toxins from the system.

The sole purpose of these articles is to provide information about the tradition of ayurveda. This information is not intended for use in the diagnosis, treatment, cure or prevention of any disease. If you have any serious acute or chronic health concern, please consult a trained health professional who can fully assess your needs and address them effectively. If you are seeking the medical advice of a trained ayurvedic expert, call or e-mail us for the number of a physician in your area. Check with your doctor before taking herbs or using essential oils when pregnant or nursing.