We all just love that kind of day when the air and sky are clear and vibrant as a bell and you can see for miles and seemingly breathe energy directly out of the air! You can’t help but wear a delicious grin on your uplifted face, and a precious mindfulness within is so readily engaged. This newsletter is about ensuring that our head, including our brain, mind, awareness and sinuses, remains as clear and brilliant as such a gorgeous vivifying day as that.
When we lose clarity at any level, be that our brain, our mind or our sinuses, we lose connection with our world, we lose quality of life, and we gain a drab flavored filter of distorted senses and blurred sensitivity. In Yoga and Ayurveda it is said that the innate essence of our awareness is not dull, is not agitated, but is truly clear unifying brilliance itself, and so over the millennia many practices and remedies have been sculpted and proven to support such luminous clarity.
A very common way to quickly lose clarity in the ole’noggin is to experience an onslaught of sinus-centric irritants. Let me count the ways that our external world so oft steeps us in scenes of such seditious annoyances.
Though known for thousands of years in traditional systems of wellness, immunotherapy, which is boosting systemic immunocompetence, is becoming a technique of choice when supporting healthy response to irritants in the sinuses. This is why herbs like Tulsi-Holy Basil, and formulas like Immunity Formula and Tulsi Tea, especially Tulsi Cleanse Tea, can so readily support our clarity in this way. No doubt, this is one reason why the Immunity Formula deserved winning the award for being one of the best new products in the Natural Product industry last spring.
Turmeric, with its curcumins and 600 other potent molecules, is also a classic “first-reach” ally for this. For a decade I had an herb booth at a particular North Californian outdoor spring festival and my Turmeric was often sold out on the first day for this very reason!
Maintaining healthy robust immunity is very important in keeping the mind, brain and sinuses clear as so often it is organic irritants that challenge wellness. In the same way strong antioxidants like Turmeric, Tulsi-Holy Basil, Kutki, Triphala and Brahmi-Gotu Kola are also key as they can neutralize strong inorganic irritants by ensuring healthy inflammatory response while radically boosting levels of endogenous antioxidants like SOD and Glutathione.
For many people, maintaining healthy clear sinuses and ENT terrain can be a very hard task to manage, in fact only about 2 out of every 3 people enjoy clear ENT and sinus spaces, especially in the spring. In many cases people may not even realize that they are not as clear as they believe themselves to be as irritants, crud and congestion attenuate their very ability to cognize the level and extent of their waning clarity. Our very metrics to determine “normal” are themselves dulled, dimmed, and paradoxically become simultaneously both dense and vacuous. Thus, daily doses of supportive herbs are great to avoid the slippery slopes of stupefying desensitization.
In many of the same ways and for the same reasons these same herbs, especially Turmeric and Tulsi-Holy Basil, support a healthy ENT terrain. With the constituent herbs Amalaki, Neem and Turmeric, another formula that excels at this is the Skin Renew Formula. Yes, you can support healthy vibrant skin and a clear ENT with this strongly anti-stress immunomodulatory formula of three potent adaptogens.
Many people will reach for the practice of Jal Neti when it comes to maintaining healthy sinuses and ENT terrains. Traditionally, these water based sinus flushes are done with salt water or with Triphala tea. To find out more about using Triphala tea to cleanse the senses please see my blog on the topic. Remember that daily Jal Neti is optimal for a rare few, and a preferable protocol for you may be just twice or thrice per week.
Have you noticed how often Brahmi, whether that is Bacopa, Centella (Brahmi-Gotu Kola), is considered and marketed as an “energy boosting” supplement? Yes, both Bacopa and Centella (Gotu Kola) are anti-stress adaptogens, and so it is no surprise that we feel more energy from them, but you will be pleased to know that the mechanisms for this “energy boost” is not depletive, as is the case of acquiring “energy” from coffee by stimulating the adrenals into a stress response.
Rather these herbs optimize your access to your own innate energy by literally clearing blocks in the brain at the micro-capillary levels, where arterioles, venules, cells and the lymphatic system all meet. It is at this level that congestive metabolites of our diet and physiology tend to literally coalesce into obstructions to the flow of cellular food, oxygen and wastes. Herbs like Brahmi (Centella and Bacopa) and formulas like Brahmi-Gotu Kola and Memory help to remove this stagnation by expanding the channels of flow and by decreasing the size of the congestive mass.
When this happens, and it can happen within an hour of taking these herbs, one feels more energy as all the electrical (neural) and molecular (blood and lymph) flows required for healthy energy and cognition tend to surge in cascades of supportive symbiosis. Again Turmeric is an incredible ally here as so much recent western science research has confirmed. This is also one of the mechanism by which the Joy! Formula works so well.
April, with all its challenges around taxes, may be one of the most stress filled periods of the year, second only to “the holidays.” But unlike the holidays we don’t have the time off to deal with all the stress; we just have to keep on keeping on through the forest of nit picking accounting details. And so, as the daily stress mounts then a deeper mental overwhelm sets in, and we become very suitable terrain for a full spectrum of chelonian-like congestion of the mind, emotions, brain and sinuses, ironically engulfed in a heavy morass at the very time when we should be blossoming into the buoyancy of an emerging springtime.
One of the very best ways to attenuate the momentum of this overwhelm and increase our ability to rewardingly digest it is to consume our anti-stress adaptogens, especially those adaptogens which are renown cognitive function enhancers. These herbs include Tulsi-Holy Basil, Brahmi (both Bacopa and Centella), Shankhapushpi, Ashwagandha, Turmeric, and Jatamansi. An outstanding protocol for this is to, several times a day, “wash down” several capsules of the Joy! Formula with cups of Tulsi Tea, especially Tulsi Gotu Kola Tea, and keeping your breathe deep steady and luxurious.
Perhaps the most famous statement in Yoga is
chit vritti nirodha iti yoga
This can be translated as “the resolution of mental agitation is union with the deepest peace.” Note it is not the “removal” or the “destruction” of mental agitation, but the “resolution” of it, the being “OK” with it, the ensuring that your relationship to it is controlled and well meted. So this means that often a great way to minimize mental overwhelm is, in much the same that an ocean allows waves to dance upon its surface, to simply let mental agitation be what and when it is, on your surface, and to not let it have you.
Lacking clarity in the head is a great way to disturb your sleep, and disturbed unrestful sleep is a great way to make sure your head lacks clarity when you wake up the next morning. So obviously there is likely a “catch 22” or three sneaking around your life when your head is less than clear; it is just that fundamental to wellness.
Invoking restful sleep is not just about generating sedated drowsiness. Well, actually sometimes it may be nice to just simply be knocked out, but it is not sustainable as then you wake up sedated as well, not really rested. In situations like this people tend to reach for some artificial ambition, like coffee, to get them going, which of course, can be the very foundation of needing to be knocked out at night in the first place. Talk about catch-22s! So in the long run it is much better to encourage a peaceful restorative sleep.
Ashwagandha is one of the champs when it comes to supporting a deep sleep. Even its species name somnifera refers to this strong anti-stress adaptogen’s ability to invoke a fruitful sleep. This is why for thousands of years it has been central to successful sleep protocols and formulas like the Peaceful Sleep Formula and the new Tulsi Sleep Wellness Tea. Together these two are great allies to support healthy sleep.
Also, remember, if we do not move our energy enough during the day, for instance in the form of exercise, then that energy will want to move at night, and most people will find that movement to preclude a restful sleep. So though we have wonderful herbs to help us sleep, at the end of the day, literally, often it is “right lifestyle” that will give us the deepest assurance of deeply restorative sleep. So you may want to audit your life accordingly.
For many years now it has been clear that maintaining healthy response to inflammatory situations in the brain is an extremely critical factor in supporting optimal neurogeneration and the subsequent salubrious balanced behavior, inclusive of simply having a clear mind. This is indeed a major facet of the deep support of focus and memory afforded by every single one these cognitive function adaptogens I am mentioning in this article. And what is more, this benefit is as available to elders as it is to our children, the latter of whom are increasingly having trouble with maintaining healthy centeredness and mindfulness due to the diet and pharmaceuticals our society gives them.
To a large extent, congestion, or clarity, anywhere in the “head” (brain, mind, awareness or sinuses) leads to congestion or clarity, respectively, everywhere in the “head” (the brain, mind, awareness or sinuses). In other words, depending on our level of clarity, our heads can be either beauties or beasts. In many people a head that is less than clear clouds their judgment and/or sends them into overwhelm from which arises a frenzy of unfocused action of futile attempts to organize their world into some semblance of sense. When this happens whole families can get caught up in the stress.
So do yourself and your loved ones a favor and utilize those herbal allies, practices and protocols that support a clear head, and weave your resources and daily routine in a way aligned to your true nature: clear kind awareness is a most brilliant moment to share!