With the monsoon setting in and the weather becoming erratic, it not uncommon to catch a cold or cough. The Indian system of Ayurveda looks at all diseases as imbalance of the 3 doshas namely : Vata, Pitha and Kapha. When we understand these basic principles, it will be easy to integrate the principles of a balanced diet into our lives. Common cold and cough occur due to the imbalance of Kapha dosha. When the weather outside is cold, our digestive fire too becomes a bit dim, thereby making it difficult for the body to burn toxins. This is the time when our body become more susceptible to cold. We will need to include components in our food that will boost this digestive fire and balance kapha dosha. Pungent, Bitter or Astringent tastes can help counter the imbalance. Pepper, cumin seeds, and ginger are some spices that can be beneficial. Here are some herbal remedies for common cold.
Remedy#1 * Pour a glass of water into a vessel.
* Add some Tulasi (Holy Basil) and Omavalli (Indian Borage) leaves into the water and bring it to a boil. * Add panam kalkandu (palm jaggery) to sweeten the brew and drink this three times a day: in the morning, afternoon and at night.
* Take equal quantities of pepper powder, chukku (dry ginger powder) and thippili (Long Pepper) powder. * Dry roast each of these powders in a pan separately. * Mix the powders and store them in an air-tight container. * When symptoms of cold and cough appear, mix this powder in a tablespoon of honey and consume. * Have this mixture three times a day: in the morning, afternoon and at night.
* Pour a glass of water into a vessel. * Crush 5–6 peppercorns,add it to the water and bring to a boil. * Turn off the flame, and add panam kalkandu(palm jaggery) for taste. * Sip this brew slowly while hot. * Have this three times a day: in the morning, afternoon and in the evening.
How to grow Tulasi (Holy Basil)
Tulasi is a sacred plant that is found in almost all Indian households. Tulasi can be grown very easily in local soil or in a pot and requires little maintenance. Its leaves have a variety of medicinal uses. As per Vaastu shastra, the Tulasi plant must be planted to the north-east of the house.
Sow the Tulasi seeds in a pot filled with potting soil, or directly in the local soil. The Tulasi must be planted in a place that receives direct sunlight. The seeds must be sowed ¼ inch deep into the soil. Sprinkle with water, and ensure that the soil is always moist, but not soggy.
How to grow Omavalli (Indian Borage)
Omavalli or Karpooravalli is also a herb that can be easily grown on a pot or on the ground. It also requires very little maintenance. Propagation of Omavalli is by stem cutting.
Plant a stem cutting of the Omavalli herb in the local soil or in a pot.It must be planted in a place that receives direct sunlight. The plant requires ample amount of water. Water the plant sufficiently.
NOTE :If the local soil is infertile, work organic compost into the soil, in the ratio 1:1 (one part of organic compost to one part of soil) before planting these herbs.