Healthy Skin Begins Within
Good Digestion, The Best Beautician Money Can Buy
Sophia Loren, one of the world’s legendary beautiful women, and one with a still-radiant complexion at age 77, once said, “Beauty is how you feel inside, and it reflects in your eyes.” To put an ayurvedic spin on her statement, beauty is how you feel and function inside, and it reflects in your skin.
Beautiful skin is radiant, smooth, well-hydrated, and even-colored. It has firm elasticity with few wrinkles. What exactly is the secret of ageless beauty? Modern science and the cosmetic industry market beauty as something that can be found in a bottle or created by a surgical procedure. However, according to ayurveda, the secret of ageless beauty relates to the internal balance of one’s digestion, immunity, and state of mind.
Oh, the Elixir of Ojas!
The outer glow of clear, youthful skin is directly related to the inner fire of one’s agni. Agni is the transformational digestive force in the body. It is responsible for the digestion of food, assimilation of nutrients into the body’s tissues, the elimination of waste products, and the production of ojas. According to ayurveda, ojas is a refined biological substance that is the end-product of healthy digestion. Ojas is the master biochemical substance underlying higher states of consciousness. These higher states are strongly balancing to mind and body, and have significant benefits for health. Signs of healthy agni are signs of ojas: they include physical vitality, mental clarity, strong immunity, balanced emotions, and radiant skin.
Ojas is also an elixir for immunity, and is the vital essence that gives the skin strength and beauty. The quantity and quality of ojas depend on the health of one’s digestive and elimination systems. The skin care products on drugstore shelves pale in comparison to the protective and rejuvenating powers of balanced digestion and its byproduct, ojas. Ojas is something you can expect to be hearing more and more about as more Americans discover ayurveda.
Healthy Skin Begins Within - Respect Your Agni, Reflect Beauty
One’s skin is beautiful because it is healthy. Skin is healthy when the body’s digestive system is balanced. Balance in the digestive system relates to the food one eats and the lifestyle one chooses to live. Healthy skin begins within.
There is a computer programming term, “GIGO,” which means “garbage in, garbage out.” It applies not only to the processing ability of a computer, but the processing ability of the body and mind. The quality/integrity of the output is directly dependent on the quality/integrity of the input. Consuming junk food, leftovers, soda pop, and excess caffeine stresses digestion and can prematurely age the skin. Ayurveda states that we metabolize, or digest, our entire environment through all our senses. So, if one is feeding their mind with negative thoughts and living a lifestyle that consists of late nights, frequent happy hours, strained work, and constant multi-tasking, the digestive system becomes unbalanced. Poor diet and a high-stress lifestyle cause a build-up of ama (toxins) in the tissues. The result is poor tissue quality, especially in the skin.
Ayurvedic Approach to Beautiful Skin
When it comes to maintaining youthful, healthy skin, we can’t turn back the clock. But we can use the time we have now, and each day make choices that support healthy skin. Here are some simple and effective ways to look and feel beautiful.
- Eat right and be bright. When you ingest fresh organic foods, you invest in your skin. A diet that consists of local organic fruits and vegetables, whole grains, and energizing proteins like whole milk, soaked almonds, and split mung dhal kindles the digestive fire. Here are more tips to support agni.
- Support agni and nourish your skin with Organic Digest Tone (Triphala Plus). This powerful antioxidant is a tonic for the digestive system and an elixir for the skin. It also supports the benefits of all other herbals you take.
- Maintain your skin’s lubrication and collagen levels with Youthful Skin Toner and Youthful Skin Cream.
- Integrate yoga asanas (positions), pranayama (breathing techniques), and Transcendental Meditation®, or the meditation of your choice, into your daily routine. All of these support the skin by helping to improve digestion, increase circulation, and lower stress. The Transcendental Meditation® program has been shown in many studies to relieve stress and create balance.
For beautiful skin, there is no such thing as a magical external potion or lotion. Rather, it requires maintaining healthy digestion by eating right and managing stress. Beautiful skin begins within. If you learn to tend the home fire of agni, your life will radiate with health, well-being, and beauty well into your golden years of life.
These articles provide a great resource from The Council of Maharishi Ayurveda Physicians on the knowledge, practices, products, and applications of Maharishi Ayurveda.
The sole purpose of these newsletters 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.