We are all aware of the five elements of nature – Earth, Water, Fire, Air and Sky that surround us. But do we really know that all these five elements are connected with our bodies and can influence our health as well?
A sudden drop in temperature, a sharp rise in the heat or humidity, it affects us directly. We get dehydrated if there is too much humidity in the air and we don’t take enough water during humid summers. There is a deep rooted connection that our health has with nature. It all goes to show that any tampering that we do with Mother Nature, it will affect us sooner or later.
Dr. Radhika Krishnan, BNYS (Bachelor of Naturopathy and Yogic Sciences) shares amazing details about the elements of nature that are connected with our mind, health and body.
“Our body is made up of Panchamahabhootas. Naturopathy believes that everything in this universe is made up of Panchamahabhootas meaning ‘the five great elements’ in Sanskrit,” says Dr. Radhika.
These are the tiniest elements which constitute living and non-living matters. Every matter in this universe contains these five elements in them. Depending upon their predominance they are classified as below:
The five elements of Panchamahabhootas are:
Panchamahabhootas consists of Prithvi (Earth), Jal (Water), Agni (Fire), Vayu (Air) and Akash (Sky). Different parts of our body are connected to these five elements. Our body has the capability to heal itself, but it is only possible when the body is in harmony with nature. Good health can be achieved by following Nature Cure or Nature Therapy.
- We have to be in touch with the earth to remain healthy.
- Walking bare feet on mud or wet grass keeps you in touch with Earth. Dr. Radhika mentions, that you must preferably walk on the grass or wet mud in the mornings. The temperature is usually cool at that time and the grass has dew drops settled on them which is very good. Ideal time for such walks is between 6am and 7am.
- If possible, lie on the floor or on the grass, as it helps in removing body fatigue.
- As far as treatment is concerned Earth means mud. Mud has got many minerals in them which is very useful in treating many skin diseases like psoriasis, skin allergies.
- Mud bath applied on the stomach area is good for treating acidity as it helps in cooling the area.
- Instead of soap we can use medicated mud soaps or natural soaps. Mud contains certain anti-septic properties and taking bath with mud once in a week helps in keeping the body cool during summer.
- Like Earth, Water is also important for keeping ourselves healthy. “Your body is estimated to be about 60 to 70 percent water. Blood is mostly water, and your muscles, lungs, and brain all contain a lot of water. You need water to regulate body temperature and to provide nutrients to all your organs and tissues. Water also transports oxygen to your cells, removes waste, and protects your joints and organs,” mentions Dr. Radhika.
- We should drink at least half litre of water early in the morning as soon as we wake up. Dr. Radhika states, “This helps in neutralising the excess acid produced in the stomach as there is a long gap between dinner and breakfast. It is also very helpful for people having ulcer or acidity.”
- We should drink at least 2-3 litres of water daily. Water transports nutrients and oxygen into cells, moisturizes the air in our lungs and helps our metabolism. Water also protects our vital organs, helps our organs to absorb nutrients better, regulates body temperature, detoxifies our body, protects and moisturizes our joints.
- Taking bath in the morning in cold water helps in opening of sweat pores in the skin, creating a sense of freshness and well being in us. Taking bath with cold water helps in improving the blood circulation to muscles and thus strengthens them.
- When you’re thirsty, drink water and not aerated beverages. Aerated drinks can increase the acidity in your stomach, so it is best to avoid them when you’re having meals or are thirsty.
- Avoid drinking water along with food. Water can be taken half an hour before or one hour after the meal. Drinking water along with meals can dilute the digestive acids produced in your stomach, which can delay digestion; if needed you can have a little water in between.
- Sunlight is also necessary for good health as it is the main source of Vitamin D.
- Composed of many visible and invisible rays, sunlight has its own properties and effect on the human body.
- Sunlight helps in the production of Vitamin D in our bodies. Dr. Radhika feels that, “Vitamin D is the perhaps the single most underrated nutrient in the world of nutrition. That’s probably because it is free. Vitamin D is produced in the human body when sunlight touches the skin. It prevents osteoporosis, depression, prostate cancer, breast cancer, skin irritations and even diabetes.”
- Our house, especially the bedroom should be airy and should be built in such a way to allow the morning sunlight to enter the room.
- It is ideal to practise yoga or exercise in open hall or terrace.
- Sunbath can be taken in the mornings and evenings for 20-30 mins. It should be taken before 9am and after 5pm in the evening.
- Akash is related to human body through fasting. Akash mainly refers to the digestive system in the body.
- Fasting helps in removing the toxins present in the body. According to Naturopathy toxaemia is the main cause of disease. Fasting can be done with juice, mono-diet or even with fruits.
- Fasting once a week helps in keeping a person healthy. A person needs to have a good digestive system to be healthy. Fasting gives rest to the digestive system, and improves its functions.
- Fasting can be done with water, juices or fruits. Any fruit juices or fruits can be taken depending upon the person. Fruits should be eaten during regular meal times during fasting. You can fast either once a week or once in two weeks depending on your body type. If you plan on fasting for more than a week, then it should be done only under the guidance of a Naturopathic physician.
- It is good to do fasting with lemon juice, musumbi juice, orange juice or tender coconut water. All citrus juices (musumbi. Orange lemon) are rich in vitamin C and Calcium. Juices like pomegranate, carrot and grape are rich in iron and fibre.
- Fasting improves physical and mental wellbeing and helps in cleaning the body.
- Fresh air is also an important factor for keeping ourselves healthy. This is a good reason to keep taking those weekend breaks and heading off to a beach or a hill resort if you live in a city. Fresh air is a rare commodity in big cities, so it is ideal to give your lungs a break with a weekend getaway.
- We should practise deep breathing early in the morning. Taking deep breaths in the morning helps in improving the lung functions.