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Top 10 Ayurvedic Tips for Mind and Brain Fitness

Updated: 3 days ago

We seek balance in our mind and body to feel out best mentally, physically, and spiritually. If you’re experiencing a lack of focus, bottom line—it doesn’t feel good. Vata may be imbalanced and blood sugar may play a role. Easy to implement Ayurveda tools may make a world of difference. Here’s 10 tools to try to naturally improve your focus with Ayurveda.

woman with counter of healthy food and holding cardboard brain

Explore more on the Saumya Blog, selected top Ayurveda blogs and websites to watch.

According to Harvard Medical School, " Just as you may not run as fast or jump as high as you did as a teenager, your brain's cognitive power—that is, your ability to learn, remember, and solve problems—slows down with age. You may find it harder to summon once familiar facts or divide your attention among two or more activities or sources of information. These changes affect your ability to focus, so you may find yourself getting more easily distracted than you were when you were younger."


We work our bodies out, but what can we do to keep our minds fit?


Top 10 Ayurvedic Tips for Mind and Brain Fitness


1. Meditation: Use our free Daily Guided Practices. Eleven minutes in the morning, and eleven minutes in the evening as part of your morning and evening routine.


2. Commit to a Daily Routine: Flowing with the rhythm of a daily routine helps to improve focus as it balances Vata dosha. Remember, Vata dosha governs movement and too much movement can destabilize and unground you. A daily rhythm or routine, in contrast, soothes Vata dosha and that allows you to concentrate more easily. How? It’s simple—because you’re not focused on planning and doing on the fly. There’s a fluid course set for your day and now you can flow with it.

“I feel greatly improved. Stress fell off like an old hairy coat. I’m just not anxious. Depression is way decreased. I was haunted by anxiety my whole life, and it’s just gone. The mudra, mantra...WOW. This is so cool! I have regained hope. Something wonderful is taking place. You and your knowledge come to me after a lifetime of searching and prayer. I am forever grateful.” -- Mark Hughes, Minnesota

woman waking up refreshed

2. Quality Sleep:Read Sleep Soundly: 11 Ayurvedic Tips to Help You Drift Off into Dreamland and prepare yourself up for successful restorative sleep. Combine these tips and take inspiration from our 10 Ayurvedic Evening Rituals for a Calming Night and you will feel the difference.


Let's face it, there's nothing like a good night's sleep to make everything more enjoyable and easier. Good sleep is key to good health and certainly focus and concentration.

3. Let Go of Stress: "People often downplay the impact of stress saying, 'Oh, it's just stress,' yet, it is stress that causes diseases and conditions in the body and mind. Stress is a killer. When we learn how to move from flight-fight-freeze side of our nervous system, to the rest-restore-relax mode, we have changed our lives, and physical and mental health at the deepest levels." - Veena | Saumya Ayurveda


Read on the Saumya Blog: Learn Diaphragmatic Breathing and Change Your Life. Change my breath and it changes my life? It may seem an overly dramatic claim, yet it is not. Breath is the one link between the body and mind. When we breathing diaphragmatically, we are in the relaxed side of your nervous system. Breath work, or pranayama is working directly our prana, or vital force.


When we breath diaphragmatically, we shift from fight-flight-freeze, to rest-restore-relax mode.


woman relaxing in the woods

“Saumya Ayurveda has help me to become reborn. With the help of Veena, I have become more than ADHD. My entire body responds better to stress and relaxation.

Being a molecular scientist, it was difficult to grasp the simplistic complexity of Ayurveda, but the changes I experienced with Veena allowed me, not only a general understanding of health, but sparked a lifelong journey. This is a feat, considering I had difficulty focusing and digestive issues only four short years ago.

Veena’s evaluation and treatment is so individualized that it was easy to adjust my life which spawned health. Veena is a skilled healer with a solution to fit all.” -Dr. Jessica B. Naturopath, Molecular Scientist, New York City



chart showing doshas and times of day they govern


4. Leverage the Energy of the Day: Know When To Do What

Ayurveda is the wisdom of life, ayu means life, and veda means wisdom of knowledge. According to Ayurveda, certain times of the day have a corresponding dosha. When we work in harmony with that knowledge, we increase our focus almost effortlessly—this alignment with nature saves our energy for other areas of our lives.

Times the Doshas Rule the Day

Have you ever woken up much later than usual? Did you find yourself waking up in fog and no matter how many cups of coffee you consumed, you just felt off all day? It may seem like a mystery, but Ayurveda (the knowledge of life) knows why. The doshas govern certain times of the day and night, in four-hour shifts.


Kapha is dominant from 6:00-10:00 a.m. and p.m. With its primary qualities of moist, heavy, slow (or dullish), cool, stable, oily, and smooth, when we wake up in that dominant energy in the universe, we feel it. The elements of water and earth are heaviest during these times, and it results in an experience of weightiness and even dullness. How we experience this energy depends on our doshic picture.


For example, if someone is anxious, this heavy, grounding quality, especially in evening is soothing and balancing. Or, if someone is intense and always trying to scratch off one more item on the to-do list at night, (Pitta), the naturally occurring weight of Kapha time can help balance the over-driven Pitta.


On the opposite end, if someone is Kapha and they're sleeping in until 9:00a.m. because they feel tired and lack energy, they will do better to wake up before Kapha time, to catch the lighter energy present in the universe as that opposite quality will invigorate them. Sleeping later in this case, increases the Kapha person experience of feeling tired.


Pitta is dominant from 10:00-2:00 a.m. and p.m. Have you ever stayed up late experiencing a second wind--you got those taxes done finally, cleaned out the closet, you were a focused go-getter and it all happened with such ease. Two in the morning arrives and you're spent. What just happened?


Pitta governs metabolism, transformation, doing! You didn't have a second wind; you experienced a second fire of productivity. If you have a task at work that requires your strongest concentration, tackle that during Pitta hours. It's when we're at our sharpest, clearest, and most focused.


Vata governs 2:00-6:00 a.m. and p.m. It governs all the movement of the universe inside and outside of us. Its primary qualities of cold, dry, mobile, subtle, and light. Have you noticed toward mid-afternoon it gets a little harder to focus? Our concentration is lightening up. We might feel spaced out and ready to call it a day. This is the light, mobile nature of Vata calling us to move (thanks to Vata’s mobile quality) on to something else.


Ever wake up at night around 2:00-4:00? That occurs as Vata is increasing in the atmosphere and we feel its impact. When Vata is out of balance, we are especially susceptible to such wakings. As women begin to move through the perimenopausal transition, even those who slept like a log, may find themselves suddenly waking up in the middle of the night. Why? Because they are beginning to move into the Vata stage of life and Vata dosha is a bit out balance and needing some grounding.


"During Vata time we want to start downshifting internally. We may still be at school, work, or driving around, but internally, we can recognize the shift that has occurred and that alone helps. It's a time not to do the most difficult tasks of the day, to not pile on more, but to start taking it easy. When we algin ourselves with nature in this way, we are swimming with the flow of the stream and not against it."

-Veena, Saumya Ayurveda


woman drinking lemon water

5. Do an Ayurveda Home Cleanse and Clear Our Mental and Physical Ama


One of the most effective tools in Ayurveda for boosting mental function is a guided home Ayurveda cleanse.

Over time, ama - or toxins - can accumulate in our bodies and minds. This makes seasonal cleanses a vital part of an Ayurveda lifestyle. 

Our 7-day detox programs are customized to your goals, current dosha state and life circumstances, and seasonal challenges where you live. Cleanse from the comfort of home. Click here to learn more.


Explore our articles on cleansing and detox:

 

“I was looking for a home cleansing program and Saumya Ayurveda delivered! I work full time, have a family, sports, commute, --and this cleanse was manageable! I had such a positive cleanse experience; I plan to do it again and I have it on my planner already." 

- A.B., White Bear Lake, Minnesota


woman jogging outside

6.  Get Moving!


One of the best rituals you can add to your Ayurvedic morning routine is a brief nature walk after breakfast. Getting outside has numerous health benefits, including reduced stress and depression, improved breathing, and better sleep.


Physical activity in the morning before breakfast helps with brain function and supports a healthy digestive fire, or agni.


A morning walk is perfection for all. Vata types can glide along an easy stroll. Pitta types can speed it up a touch. And Kapha types can shake energetic heaviness with a vigorous power walk.


Exercise, even light movement, makes us healthier, stronger, and more energetic. If you can’t get outside, a brief sequence of Qi Gong or Tai Chi can get your blood pumping and clear the mind.


To learn more about the benefits of walking according to Harvard University Medical School, click here. 

Walking is "...the closest thing we have to a wonder drug," in the words of Dr. Thomas Frieden, former director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention."

6 Ayurvedic Quick Tips for Brain and Mind Fitness image of carrot ginger soup.

7. Food is Medicine: We are overwhelmed and confused by information. Most people are scratching their heads or pulling out their hair. It is indeed frustrating. Ayurveda offers a clear path by customizing your food specifically to you and this means, in most cases, eating a wider variety of enjoyable foods. Through consulting with a seasoned Certified Ayurvedic Practitioner, you can learn how to turn all your food into medicine. Book your free phone consultation to explore more.


8. Movement: Yog-asana (poses, postures, "yoga")


Yog-asana refers to the physical postures of yogic practice. Morning yog-asana stimulates the digestive fire and prepares your body for a healthy breakfast. It also releases stress and tension and energizes the body and mind.


woman performing surya namaskar

Surya Namaskar (sun salutation) is the chief morning yog-asana. This series of 12 gentle poses opens you to greet and internalize the sun into your own system.


Take a peaceful nature walk after dinner to calm your mind and aid digestion. It’s a simple activity with huge benefits. Studies show regular strolls can help prevent issues like heart disease, diabetes, high blood pressure, and even depression.


These yoga poses help relieve stress, soothe nerves, and calm busy minds:

woman peforming Viparita Karani (Legs Up Wall)

  • Viparita Karani (Legs Up Wall)

A few benefits of this yog-asana:Viparita Karani may help with a range of issues including anxiety and insomnia. It’s especially supportive for good sleep, perform this pose before bed to unwind.

woman performing Makarasana (Crocodile Pose) by a lake

  • Makarasana (Crocodile Pose)

No other yoga pose makes diaphragmatic breathing quite so natural and easy. A few benefits of this yog-asana: relaxes the nervous system, reduces blood pressure, relieves stress and anxiety, releases lower back tension, improves digestion and supports lungs due to deep diaphragmatic breathing.


This pose is ideal for learning and practicing diaphragmatic breathing. Use this posture in combination with the free guided practices and shift from flight-fight-freeze, to rest-restore-relax.

woman peforming Balasana (Child’s Pose)

  • Balasana (Child’s Pose)

A few benefits of this yog-asana: relief from constipation, releases back tension, calms the nervous system and stretches the thighs and ankles.


woman performing Savasana (Corpse Pose)

  • Savasana (Corpse Pose)

A few benefits of this yog-asana: calming to the nervous system, supports digestion, enhances immunity, reduces stress, fatigue and anxiety, helps to lower blood pressure.


As you sink into these resting poses, practice diaphragmatic breathing or listen to a guided meditation.


woman practicing nadi shodhana

9. Nadi Shodhana or Alternate Nostril Breathing Pranayama (Breathwork)

Nadi shodhana is easy to learn and practice daily. It balances all three doshas (who could ask for more?), and creates a calm, focused mind. Nadi shodhana can be practiced just about anywhere. It take a few minutes to complete the practice. Click here to learn how to practice nadi shodhana.


6 Ayurvedic Quick Tips for Brain and Mind Fitness image of colorful herbs in spoons

10. Herbs: Take Your Herbs


While a proper diet is the foundation of holistic wellness, Ayurveda uses medicinal herbs to target and support specific tissues, systems, channels, and organs in the body and mind. Targeted plant nutrition can be used to address a wide range of concerns, including to improve digestion, increase mental clarity, boost immunity, and even help you catch some Zs.


At Saumya Ayurveda, we take a “less is more” approach to herbs. Rather than overwhelming you with a bunch of supplements you don’t need, we start with a gentle dose (no more than it takes – but no less, either!). As you move deeper into your Ayurvedic lifestyle, we’ll circle back regularly to ensure your herbal plan stays aligned with the seasons and your current doshic needs.



As with all herbs, the tenet of Ayurveda is that what works well for one person may be incorrect for another. Herbs are listed for informational purposes only. To know what herbs are correct for you, book a consultation.

 

“Veena is wonderful to work with, she’s a great listener and very thorough about going through all the different aspects of your life. My digestive issues have a had a complete 180 degree turn around and I feel better than I have in years.


I had gotten to the point that I thought a lot of what I was experiencing was just a normal part of the aging process—things changed over time, and I just got used to them.


It’s been great knowing that I can experience better health and increased vitality with some relatively small changes. Veena is great about understanding what I could easily accommodate in my daily routine. There was no “forcing” solutions, but rather incorporating what I could to work with my lifestyle. I have experienced amazing results!” –Kate K., Stillwater, Minnesota


These top 10 Ayurvedic Tips for Mind and Brain Fitness integrate naturally into our daily lives.

Saumya Ayurveda's 3 steps for transforming your daily life with a woman meditating by a lake


According to the Harvard Gazette, "...meditation program appears to make measurable changes in brain regions associated with memory, sense of self, empathy, and stress."


There is a saying, "The mind is more in the body, than the body is in the mind." The Saumya 3 step meditation process shifts us from fight-flight-freeze mode, to rest-restore-relax mode. Give it a try for forty days and observe the changes. The more grounded and relaxed we are, the smoother life flows.


"The breath is the connection between the mind and body, so by training the breath, we become calm, focused, and grounded, we slow down the aging process by decreasing stress. These practices are so simple and easy to have as part of our daily life. We actually feel and look younger."

- Veena, Saumya Ayurveda


1. Learn Diaphragmatic Breathing and Change Your Life. When we re-learn to breath diaphragmatically, we move from the flight-fight-freeze mode, to rest, restore, relaxation mode from where we want and need to live.


2. Daily Guided Practices: 11 minutes in the morning and in the evening, as anchors of your daily Ayurveda routine.



"Choose a couple of practices from the routines that provide you with the greatest support. Perform them while applying our two minute meditation technique and your mundane tasks, just transformed into a mellifluous meditation. This is meditation applied to daily life." - Veena, Saumya Ayurveda


6 Ayurvedic Quick Tips for Brain and Mind Fitness image antique compass and map

Discover the Saumya Ayurveda Way


We all want to be heard, understood, and cared for as whole beings, not a set of isolated symptoms. True health is more than the absence of disease, which is why Western medicine so often leaves us feeling hopeless and unseen.


Deep down, you already know what you’re searching for: a new framework for living – one that brings your entire being back into balance. With Saumya Ayurveda, you’ll receive individualized guidance to create the physically, mentally, and spiritually vibrant life you crave.


Saumya Ayurveda provides concierge, top-notch, award-winning Ayurveda care. We strive to keep it simple, so you can focus on you! Opt for virtual consultations and we'll come to you.


Our practice model is client focused, we’re not in the retail herb business. We’ll guide you where to order herbs directly online. Our top-shelf Ayurveda oils and herbalized ghees are the best in the land and we’ll ship your care package right to your doorstep.


Our effective multi-appointment consultation packages provide you with experienced Ayurveda care, enthusiastic guidance, and inspiring support.


Explore our personalized services and book your FREE discovery call today. Psst! Our clients say it best – so read and watch our client's stories.


6 Ayurvedic Quick Tips for Brain and Mind Fitness image of Veena at Saumya Ayurveda

Veena is a Certified Ayurvedic Practitioner and meditation teacher, and monk.


She is President Emeritus and teaching faculty of the Meditation Center.


Veena fell in love with the traditional medicine used in her family’s home, learning herbal remedies at her grandmother's knee.


These childhood experiences were the seeds of a lifelong passion. For over 30 years, Veena has dedicated her life to the world’s oldest healing system: Ayurveda.


She draws on this ancient wisdom to help others find their compass to a healthy life – and support those left wanting by Western medicine.


An experienced Certified Ayurvedic Practitioner, Veena’s deep, intuitive knowledge of Ayurveda empowers her clients to reclaim their fullest, most vibrant lives –mentally, physically, and spiritually. Veena individualizes treatment plans to each person, rather than offering a one-size-fits-all approach, so it fits your life and becomes woven in your lifestyle, naturally.



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