The Yoga Institute’s Monthly Ayurveda Workshop facilitator, Eleni Triskikas, shares her tips for the perfect ayurvedic cleanse designed just for you!
Personalising your cleanse
• Decide how long your cleanse will be
• Suggested periods- Vata 7 days, Pitta 7-14 days and Kapha 14-30 days
• Pick a meal plan that you can comfortably do
• It’s ok to change from one to the other if you need more sustenance
• Take the digestive herbs before each meal and at the end of the day (ex. ginger before meals, takra between meals for absorption and Triphala at end of day)
• Make space in your life for this…..nourish your self with some self care practices such as abhyanga/oil massage, asana, get a massage, read, rest, journal, meditate, breathe deeply, spend time in nature…..
Choose from One Meal Plan
Most Cleansing Meal Plan – Kitcheree Only: To maximize your cleanse and reap the most beneﬁts, eat only kitcheree This will be incredibly healing to your digestive track and extremely detoxifying. When you eat a mono diet, your body can focus the energy that normally goes towards digestion to cleansing and healing other systems.
Always eat your largest serving of kicharee mid-day when your digestion is the strongest. For dinner, eat early and eat a small serving or sip some hot ginger or hibiscus tea. On this meal plan you can eat 4 meals per day to keep your blood sugar and energy stable.
Option 2: Kitcheree and Steamed Veggies If eating only kitcheree is uncomfortable, then add vegetables at lunch: steamed vegetables or vegetable soup in a light, nonfat vegetable broth.
Option 3: Kitcheree, Fruit and Salad and Steamed Veggies If you are needing more than kitcheree and steamed vegetables, you can add cooked fruit in the morning with cooked cereal (such as steel cut oatmeal or cream of wheat or rice) and salad at lunch with a nonfat dressing. This plan is not as detoxifying as Option 1 and 2 above. Salad is most appropriate in the warm days of summer and cooked greens in the colder seasons.
- 1TBSP sunﬂower/ olive oil or ghee
- 1⁄4-1/2 teaspoon ground cumin seed
- 1⁄4-1/2 teaspoon ground turmeric powder
- 1 teaspoon ground coriander seed
- 1⁄4-1/2 teaspoon ground fennel seed
- 2.5 cups water
- 1⁄4 cup mung dahl ( you can also substitute whole mung beans)
- 1⁄4 cup basmati rice, ( quinoa, barley, amaranth)
- 1⁄4 tsp rock salt
- In a saucepan, over a low ﬂame, heat the oil and add the cumin, fennel and turmeric until the spices marry.
- Rinse the mung dahl and add to the spices and oil until coated.
- Add the water and bring to a boil.
- Lower the heat and let the mixture simmer for about 10minutes.
- Add the grain to the mixture and continue to simmer for a further 15 minutes. You may need to add more water if the mixture thickens and the grain needs further cooking.
- Turn oﬀ the heat and add the coriander.
- You can eat this separately or steam some vegetables and add to the mixture. Good choices are Kale, leafy greens, green beans, zucchini, asparagus.
- Total cooking time is 20-25 minutes.
2. Ayurvedic Buttermilk or Takra
- ¼ cup fresh cold yogurt (make your own fresh, when possible, for great results)
- ¾ cup puriﬁed cold water (cold is important)
- ¼ tsp. cumin powder
- ¼ tsp. coriander leaf (also called cilantro)
- 1 pinch of rock salt (sea salt is an acceptable substitute)
- Place the freshly-made yogurt in the blender and blend for three to ﬁve minutes.
- Add the cold water, and blend again on low for three to ﬁve minutes.
- Collect and discard the fatty foam on top.
- Repeat blending and remove further fatty foam if yogurt still seems thick or solid white (should appear watery but cloudy in color when ﬁnished).
- Add the three spices/herbs and stir by hand brieﬂy, just enough to mix the spices evenly.
- Serve at room temperature.
The Digestive herbs:
Ginger is known as the universal medicine beneﬁting everybody and all diseases, ( if you can say all in Ayurveda) especially Vata disorders . Ginger warms and stimulates the digestive system and the secretion of digestive enzymes. Here we use it in small amounts before each meal.
1/2 tsp dry ginger OR 1 tsp fresh ginger before each meal.
You can increase etc amounts if you need to……watch for any heat in the body! and reduce the amount. Caution with hot herbs if you have any hyperacidity, ulcers or colitis.
Triphala is among the most common formulas used in Ayurvedic medicine. Its mentioned throughout the ancient literature of Ayurvedic medicine as a tonifying blood cleanser and gentle laxative, highly prized for its ability to regulate the processes of digestion and elimination. Triphala plays an essential role in the treatment of a wide variety of conditions.
It’s also removes the toxic wastes (Mala) of poor digestion that remain in the body, called Ama.
The routine use of Triphala each morning is thought to detoxify the body and restore the integrity of the entire digestive tract, with a perfect balance between its astringent (wound-healing), demulcent (soothing), digestive, and laxative properties.
Take 1/2 tsp ( 2-3 capsules) triphala powder each night mixed in a small amount of water. The goal is for you to have soft easy elimination in the morning. You may need to increase the dose, titrate slowly until you reach 1tsp and maintain
Eleni discovered YOGA as a means for reducing stress in 1995 while practicing law in Sydney, Australia. Smitten, Eleni completed the Sydney Yoga Centre’s teacher training course. In 2000, Eleni quit the legal profession to teach Yoga full time. In 2004 Eleni moved to Los Angeles and began intensive study with Robert Birnberg a senior student in the T. Krichnamacharya lineage. The major focus of her studies is the “Yoga Sutras of Pantajali” the guidebook dedicated to creating a satvic mind.
Eleni is a Clinical Ayurvedic Specialist, CAS, a Pancha Karma Specialist PKS. She runs a private ayurvedic practice and teaches “Ayurvedic Skills for Living” courses in Silverlake and Sydney. She is a faculty member of The Yoga Institute in Sydney and at California College of Ayurveda, where she teaches and mentors students. She continues to pursue her passion for herbs, studying with renowned herbalist KP Khalsa. Eleni has completed the educational component leading to qualifications as a Western Herbalist. She is presently working on the accreditation process for the American Herbalist Guild.
Eleni passionately believes food is medicine and is looking forward to sharing her passion at The Yoga Institute with a monthly Ayurveda Workshop.