For over a decade I have heeded the advice of Dr. Pratima Raichur, an Ayurvedic healer. Her council has become invaluable to me, in terms of physical and mental health, and I am not alone in reaping these benefits. “Pratima has provided the gift of healing to thousands of men, women and children for over 40 years” (Pratima). Seasonal and simple eating, while paying close attention to one’s nature, are at the heart of her wisdom. “Recognizing that human beings are part of nature, Ayurveda describes three fundamental energies that govern our inner and outer environments: movement, transformation, and structure. Known in Sanskrit as Vata (Wind), Pitta (Fire), and Kapha (Earth), these primary forces are responsible for the characteristics of our mind and body. Each of us has a unique proportion of these three forces that shapes our nature. If Vata is dominant in our system, we tend to be thin, light, enthusiastic, energetic, and changeable. If Pitta predominates in our nature, we tend to be intense, intelligent, and goal-oriented and we have a strong appetite for life. When Kapha prevails, we tend to be easy-going, methodical, and nurturing. Although each of us has all three forces, most people have one or two elements that predominate” (Ayurveda). As happens when life’s stresses knock us about, our delicate balance can be thrown off, but thankfully there are natural remedies to once again restore your order and health.
In our household we have found this simple tea, as recommended by Pratima, can help keep you balanced. A mixture of roasted cumin, coriander and fennel seeds brings multiple health benefits, such as stoking “metabolism and the digestive fire, restoring vitality where winter sluggishness abounds. Its mild bitterness revs up the spring detoxification process and purifies the blood. CCF restores tone and tightness to swollen spring tissues. It is a soothing formula that reduces agitation and inflammation. It restores a calm clarity and spaciousness to a tense mind” (Joyful Belly). Sound like a magical elixir? Well, yes it is, and simple to make too!
Begin by roasting each of the seed types separately, as they will roast at various times. Amounts? General rule is one tablespoon of the roasted seed mixture to one cup of water. We make 4 cups at a time.
Mix 4 tablespoons of the mixed roasted seeds into 4 cups of water. After the mixture reaches a boil simmer for 10 minutes. Strain. Add honey to taste if you want a bit of sweetness. We use raw honey, mixing in a large tablespoon into the tea.
Pour your tea straight into a mug to sip during the day or into smaller containers to save in your refrigerator for another day. The mixture is wonderful warm but we drink it cold too. The important element is to enjoy the rich and complex taste while knowing you are cleansing and balancing your system.
In a world of food products that have more ingredients than you can count, or pronounce, returning to whole foods with centuries of proven health benefits is quite simply a win win.