Magical Mornings with Ayurveda

breakfast bowls-web

You know the saying, “Begin as you mean to go on”? As a system of holistic medicine that has endured for millennia, proving its capacity to begin well, Ayurveda has lots to say about how we begin our days. While whole courses could be taught on this priceless wisdom alone, I thought I’d share a few simple things you can do each day to bring magic to your mornings and set you on a course of beauty and ease for the day.

Ayurveda Mornings begin here:

  1. A tall glass of water. Warm is ideal. Room temperature at least. Even in summer. Warm water opens your tissues for better absorption, while cold water constricts (that’s why you put ice on a cut or inflammation). This warm drink helps rehydrate your body first thing while the very weight of the water in your belly encourages peristalsis. Add fresh squeezed lemon juice for extra sunshine and better absorption. It sounds too simple even to be suggested, but most people start their day with coffee, orange juice, a cold smoothie, or even go straight to food. Start with a tall glass of water and you will notice not only how good it tastes, but how good it feels.
  2. Abhyanga. Love your whole body by covering it head to toe in warm oil – organic sesame, coconut, or almond. Massage vigorously to rev’ up circulation after your sleep so you feel and think energized, refreshed and clear.As you do this, smile at your beauty. Start your day by connecting with the spirit behind your eyes. Acknowledge your body as home. (Here’s a quick how-to video)
  3. Sweet & Spicy Breakfast Bowls. Whether it’s cooked porridge, fresh fruit, or yogurt & muesli, begin your day with a breakfast bowl and add your favorite “sweet” spice. Cinnamon, cardamom, nutmeg are my favourites, with a dash of clove in the winter.

yogurt and seeds-web

Lately I’ve been travelling a lot, but when I am in my own kitchen this is the breakfast I enjoy.

Magic Mornings Breakfast

1 c Organic Plain Yogurt
1 T Pumpkin Seed
1 T Sunflower Seed
1 T Walnut, Pecan or Almond pieces (preferably soaked overnight)
1 t Flaxseed
1/4 c Coconut Milk
Ground Cinnamon, Cardamom to taste
1 T Nut butter, optional

Scoop the yogurt into your breakfast bowl. Sprinkle on the seeds and nuts. Pour the coconut milk around the rim, and season with a pinch or two of each spice. If you prefer your breakfast a bit sweeter, drizzle in a teaspoon of honey or maple syrup. For extra magic, stir in a spoonful of your favorite nut butter.

breakfast bowl

Why don’t I add fruit? Here are a few surprising things we don’t do in the morning.

3 Ayurveda Avoids:

  1. Mixing fruit and Yogurt. It’s a mix that can lead to bloating, gas, indigestion, or simply weakened Agni. It has to do with stomach acids, dairy proteins and the sugars in fruit making a sour mess in your belly. Non-dairy yogurt can work.
  2. Sweet, Cold & Heavy in the Morning. Breakfast is a Kapha time of day. Kapha is already sweet, cold and heavy. So breakfast should balance that. Cereals with milk and bananas are sweet, cold and heavy. Orange Juice is sweet, cold and heavy. Pastries, especially from the refrigerated section of your local coffee shop, are sweet, cold and heavy. Get it? If you heed this rule, and avoid these common breakfast choices, you will soon notice more vibrancy in each day.
  3. Turn on. I so love the bird song of the morning, even now with that crazy crow incessantly cawing for hours preceding the dawn. But when his sawing blare yields to the soft, echoing symphony of sparrows, robins and larks, plus an occasional coo from the doves, it is time to wake up, sit for a meditative moment, and tune in rather than turn on. Why would I turn on the so-called news? The tv, the radio, or the computer? What news is better than this news of the birds calling us to beauty, wakefulness and the natural song of life?

summer flowers
Banyan daily routine kitSpeaking of news, here’s some of the good variety: I was just wishing my friend Erin Douglas at Banyan Botanicals a happy birthday yesterday. When she heard about this post she offered a Daily Routine Kit to gift to a reader. In addition to a gorgeous body oil for Abhyanga, the kit also includes a tongue scraper, a Nasya oil and a jar of Triphala tablets. Please just comment below so I know you are interested and we’ll randomly pick a recipient after this holiday weekend.

Love and love always, Namaste. 

 

Yum

100 thoughts on “Magical Mornings with Ayurveda

  1. As always, beautifully written, effective and easy to understand and implement.
    A joy to read. The kit sounds awesome!
    Kevin

  2. Hi Laura, I’m new to your blog and my journey into auyurveda; I appreciate your words and thoughtfulness. That kit would be great to have! Sincerely, Tatum

    • Hi Tatum, Congratulations. It is wonderful to be part of your journey. I wish you all joy in your discoveries.

  3. I’m always unsure what to eat in the morning. Here’s what I take away from your post; no more morning news show, drink water before eating, and make careful food choices! Cheers!

    • Thanks for your top three takeaways. It’s always helpful to hear what’s helpful. Plus, puts me a bit into your daily life, which feels so good. Cheers Sally!

  4. Wow, that’s a special treat! Hi Laura! I’m not new to Ayurveda – in fact, delving into heartily this summer with some study with Claudia Welch and so excited about that! I LOVE your blog – simple, informative, interesting and I can feel the strong energy throughout your site! I would love a kit too! Thank you for your generous offer to everyone.

    • Hi Nancy – Lucky you! I love Claudia Welch. She’s an American Master. Thanks for your feedback, and Ayurvedic friendship.

  5. Thank you Laura for this great article. I have always added berries to my morning cereal, now I know why I shouldn’t. Your information is always filled love , its palpable.
    xxxxx Christine

    • Berries are okay – as long as you are adding a non-dairy milk. In fact, berries are summer’s, and pittas, great relief. Thank you, Christine! I always appreciate your comments.

  6. Thank you for the delicately worded tips to begin our day with Ayurvedic magic, Laura! I love Banyen Botanicals and have used Triphala for digestive healing and it is gentle and therapeutic at the same time. A kit would be a perfect summer bonus, thank you for the offering.

  7. Thank you for this lovely morning routine and visual of birds serenading you while enjoying your Kapha balancing breakfast. Question, please. If morning is Kapha (sweet, cold and heavy, then would it be better to eat yogurt or cook cereal with seeds and nuts?

    As a Kapha, I would thoroughly enjoy this generous gift from Banyan. Blessings

    • Thanks Sharon. Great question. It would be best to focus on light, dry and warm, so good breakfasts for Kapha are toast and honey with cinnamon, or grapefruit, or a bowl of berries, or a bowl of quinoa cooked with raisins and cinnamon/clove – and yes: seeds are good, though nuts are heavy. Is that helpful?

  8. Dear Laura, I so look forward to your posts. This was both beautifully in its style and informative as well. I was surprised to discover that fruit and yogurt do not mix. Being the good Kapha that I am, I have been mixing berries with my yogurt. Although counter-intuitive to our culture, the wisdom given here makes so much sense. Thank you.

    • Thank you Guy. Being the good Kapha that you are, you have a flock of devoted souls inspired by your very presence and every word. Light, warm and spicy is the key.

  9. Hi Laura, I sit by the bay each morning to watch the sunrise and drink my warm water, meditate and rub sesame oil into my feet. Usually a dove or two joins me in the ohm 🙂
    xoxo, cindy

  10. I feel fresher just reading these morning ideas! Taking in a big glass of water before anything else makes my mornings better. I love warm oil massage, but have been sporadic about the practice. This beautiful video on Abhyanga lifts away any uncertainty and helps to make this lovely morning self-massage accessible. Thank you Laura!

    • Yes, Alicia is so fresh, warm and inviting. She’s created a beautiful, inspiring video. Love you Sally. Thanks!

  11. Lovely breakfast. I never know what to eat as I am not hungry. The kit would help me heal. Thank you. Sincerely, Risa

  12. I have recently found out I am pregnant and it has joyfully led me to reconnect with Ayurveda. It is amazing the difference a nourishing self-care routine has made to my well-being and that of my little one:) Thank you for this recommendation as I had been consuming yogurt with fruit in the mornings and will modify! This kit would be wonderful.
    Thank you for your wisdom

  13. Thank you Laura 🙂 I will try this for breakfast tomorrow! And I would love a kit – not sure if I qualify in Canada?

  14. Nice to see a fundamental post, great reminder while i am traveling in WI… Thank Laura 🙂

  15. Thank you for that gorgeous post – covering myself from head to toe in warm oil is a delicious idea – so nourishing. That kit looks beautiful, put my name down for that too please 😊

  16. Love this post — I have been trying to incorporate lemon water into my mornings and am going to redouble my efforts to at least wait for that first cup of coffee! And I love Banyan Botanicals and would love to give this a try!

  17. Let’s hear it for bird song, Laura! Your crow reminds me of the blue jay that decided to hang out on my roof near my bedroom — talk about cawing! And thanks for the breakfast bowl idea.

    • Abbe, I hope you are always serenaded by the soothing orchestra of nature’s songs, even the talkative blue jay who must love telling you of his glories. Love to you.

  18. Thank you for the post. I enjoyed the article and the video. Seems like you have been off the grid for awhile. I was so happy to see you posting again.

  19. Hi Laura, I look forward to seeing your posts in my inbox. I have included my daily morning lemon water since we 1st started working together many years ago 🙂 Do you ever make your own dairy free yogurt? The kids and I are still dairy free. kit looks great!

    Sending love!!!

    Xoxo – Gina

    • yes i do make non-dairy yogurts, gina. do you? in my seasonal cleanses i give a recipe for almond yogurt, and here on my blog there is a recipe for a coconut yogurt. also a recipe for my friend joanie’s delicious beet kvass. most importantly, how are you? i miss seeing you and send you love.

  20. I am definitely interested. Love the photos in this post! Beautiful. I just started drinking CCF tea again. 🙂 Namaste, Laura. <3

  21. What a great summer breakfast – light, soothing and packed with protein. Yum, and thank-you for sharing it!

  22. You’re a tall glass of water!, Laura-ji This is as beautifully written as it is powerfully practical. Thank you for the wonderful information and recipe.

  23. Laura, as always, reading your posts inspire me to do better.
    I’ve sent you a message by Fb to explane this.
    Thanks for these morning tips.
    Love

  24. Thank you for another enlightening post – your suggestions, photos, and recipes are wonderful, and I enjoy trying out your ideas. Best, Amy

  25. As always, I love reading and applying the teachings in your posts, Laura. They are a true gift!

  26. thank you my beautiful Laura. Please let me know what’s next. I still follow your instructions. Miss u

  27. Thank you for this helpful post! I tend to start my days with a glass of cold water, followed by coffee and something “sweet, cold & heavy”. Time for me to make some changes, apparently! 😀 When would you recommend incorporating fruit into the day?

  28. Such a lovely post! Sounds like a beautiful way to start the day. I would really like to have a kit. Wonderful idea! Thank you Laura! Love you💗

  29. I love the daily practices! Ayurveda renews, restores and revives me daily and seasonally. Laura’s blog posts are an essential companion to the ongoing enthusiasm Ayurveda imparts in anyone’s life! Thank you for your fun giveaways! I am deep into my new book by Drs. Frawley and Kshirsagar. I Love it and it’s timely arrival in my life! Peace and Blessings to all!

  30. Enjoy the teachings and the re-learning regarding Ayurveda Principles and especially grateful for the info on the Banyan Botanicals website. Awesome and Grateful. Much Love my dear teacher!

  31. Pingback: Peaches & Cream Summer Joy | Food: A Love Story

  32. I always enjoy and appreciate your words of wisdom. Thank you for the reminder of how it is as important to be aware of what we take in through our senses of hearing and seeing as it is through taste and touch. Sounds of nature are not only nourishing, they are informative at many levels.
    Blessing.
    Adele

    • Thank you Adele. That is surely nourishing wisdom. I think of you often and hope you are enjoying a beautiful summer in Michigan.

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