Women’s Well Being

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Watch video about Oprah learning TM

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“There’s something about TM.
It’s the only time I have that stillness…
It gives me this peaceful feeling.
I just love it so much.”

Ellen de Generes
Comedian

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“TM is a big thing in my life. It relaxes
me completely. It’s really useful,
especially with my schedule.”

Ali Stephens
Supermodel

ageless woman book 2

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Well Being, Personal Development, Work-Life Balance and Invincibility For All Women in Melbourne and on the Mornington Peninsula

Programs specifically for women and girls are offered worldwide and are available in Mornington through our Center. They offer every woman the knowledge and practical techniques to eliminate stress in her day, gain inner happiness, perfect health, and success in all areas of life.

Develop your full potential, be naturally calm, patient, attentive and enjoy having the energy to give to all your relationships.

How? Dissolve stress and fatigue effortlessly through meditation and the Ayurvedic secrets to health.

Change your nervous system with our unique programs.

This is the knowledge you have been looking for.

Firstly lets talk consciousness because the mind leads the body- You are as your nervous system is.

The purpose of meditation is to develop higher states of consciousness- a more integrated style of mental functioning. An integrated brain, a more connected brain where all the parts are online and connected to the whole. It’s like expanding the container of consciousness then you can access your creativity, knowledge, experience, verbal fluency, all areas of mental functioning. Its the experience of the most silent state of your mind beyond all  thought, speech and action, transcendental consciousness that will change your brain. Not the intellectual understanding, philosophy or mood of it, the experience of the transcendent will transform your thinking to clear, settled, quiet, wakefulness. Regular experience of the transcendent cultures this state of restful alertness after meditation, even during dynamic activity.

meditation classes for ladies melbourne

No focusing, no concentration no trying to make something happen or keep something going.

We teach by personal instruction, everyone learns properly and the instruction is tailored to you. Suzanne has been teaching TM for 20 years ” my joy is to see it work for every person on the first day, and hear about the results they are living out in the day after just 1-2 days of TM practice. More energy, sound sleep, tolerance, better memory and a more settled, quieter mind.”Suzanne Edwards certified TM Teacher

  TM is the easiest, most effective form of meditation. 380 peer review studies confirm anyone can do TM and it’s 2-5 times more effective than other meditation.  And because it works every time you will feel the benefits each time you meditate and continue at home, otherwise why bother?Research by National Institute of Health revealed TM has a 73% compliance rate 5 years after instruction-that’s amazing! This means you will continue to meditate at home independently, on a daily basis. The Transcendental Meditation Program is taught by women, for women and girls,  join an introductory talk, then learn TM to enjoy the totally nourishing energy of other like minded, women at our group meditations and Women’s Wellness Seminars.

Book your free Introductory Talk and find out all about TM , you can book on the homepage. TM is so easy and the benefits come right from the start see our meditation for students page for details on our children’s classes.

Join our Women’s Health Meetup group or contact the Centre to keep informed of Women’s Health Seminars, Short Courses, Ayurvedic Cooking Classes, Group Meditation and our Meditation Weekend Retreats, we even have a Tour to India in Nov 2015 to an Ayurvedic Spa for 2 weeks.

For videos and more see our YouTube channel YouTubeVideos

“You come out of TM and you just feel great, it’s like you just took a two-hour nap.”

Tyler- Art Student

Next we offer you the unique knowledge of a completely individualised healthcare system,
Maharishi Ayurveda Healthcare
: time tested, complete, natural and practical health knowledge to assist in a women’s’ health promotion during: adolescence, menstruation, fertility, conception, pregnancy, childbirth, post natal care (the “blissful babies “program), menopause transition and natural health and beauty after forty. All supported by specific massage and purification therapies(Pancha karma),MSpa Youthful skin products of the highest quality, plus a great range of products and books.

This is what’s missing from modern healthcare, the practical & complete understanding of how to nourish & care for ourselves throughout life.

We offer holistic knowledge and a world wide network of Maharishi Centres and Universities plus online courses and webinars to take you from where you are to joyfully enlightened.
In the ancient Vedic tradition of knowledge ‘Mother Divine’ refers to the universal, all nourishing qualities of nature which always promote life in the direction of peace, affluence, health and happiness. Our programs seek to enliven these qualities in the women of every country and culture and religion. Once you enter our programs like Transcendental Meditation ongoing follow up and group meditation is free for life at any Centre world wide. This connected-ness and unity of purpose is very strengthening and delightful for all women in today’s busy world and a great counter balance to the business of our many responsibilities.

Whether you are a student, mother at home, professional or retired, these programs will enliven the infinite energy, creativity and bliss within you to give you the opportunity to enjoy complete personal fulfillment.

Now women of the world have the opportunity to create harmony, prosperity and everlasting peace in their own country and in our family of nations.

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Discover, Learn, Enjoy, Explore

Our programs offer complete knowledge to re-create perfect health and develop every womens full potential.

Enjoy the articles below for more information on your area of interest: then contact the Centre for more knowledge and practical programs specific to your situation. We will be happy to answer your questions.

Development of Consciousness for real sucess in daily life.

The Transcendental Meditation Program, see learn to meditate page of this website will provide full details of this profound course and all the benefits it delivers.
We also offer Transcendental Meditation Advanced Techniques, TM-Sidhi Program, In- Residence Meditation Retreat Courses, Ladies Knowledge Days, Transcendental Meditation Teacher Training Courses, courses in various areas of Vedic Science, all run by women for women.

Education
Consciousness-Based Education for girls is offered from 6 years of age through to 12 with overseas tertiary and post-graduate level programs. These programs help develop the students’ full potential, growth of intelligence and total brain function. The specific curriculum for girls enables students to develop qualities which exert a powerful influence for progress in the family, community and the nation. Learn about Maharishi School in Melbourne on the Education page of this website.

Culture
Honouring the local cultural traditions and mother tongues passed down through the generations is an important means of ensuring the evolutionary direction for the life of the society we live in. The cultural traditions and mother tongue of each area enliven the universal natural laws common to all cultures.

Our programs and activities further enrich the distinct cultural diversity found in Victoria and the Boon Worrang district of the Mornington Peninsula while promoting progress and harmony for women and their families of all cultures.

Weight-Loss

Ayurveda approaches weight loss as a need to loose waste, not weight. By waste we refer to accumulated impurities often stored in our adipose tissues or fat stores.Called ama in Ayurvedic medicine is blocks the bodies channels preventing nutrition and waste products moving throughout the body and hormones reaching their target cells. Ama is the root cause of all disease and Ayurveda has the knowledge to remove ama and strengthen your digestion to prevent ama reduction. When digestion is string and complete your natural weight will be achieved along with increased energy, string healthy tissues and a balanced appetite.

In light of this I’ve put together a quick and fun “get ready for summer” weight balancing guide. I say weight balancing because following these tips gives health benefits, and some might be more interested in just maintaining weight & health while others might be gung-ho about shedding kilos.
To balance your weight:

Do what is easy and integrate a few more tips after about a week:

Eat fresh cooked food at every meal
Eat breakfast
Have your main meal at lunch
Exercised every day (walking counts)only to the point where you can keep breathing thru your nose
Get to sleep by 10pm
Get up early as soon as you naturally wake

Note: Eating fresh food
Ayurveda recognises that “we are what we eat”. Our bodies are constantly replacing cells, generating new muscles, and essentially renewing from the inside all the time. The building blocks it uses to do this are the foods we eat. The texts that describe Ayurveda explain that our fresh foods contain intelligence, and what we are really imbibing is natures infinite organising intelligence in every morsel.

When we have re-heated, canned and non-fresh food, some (or all) of the engergising, nourishing and healing property of the food is lost. This can lead to the body creating Ama, or toxins in our system instead of life-promoting “Ojas”. This accumulation of Ama can lead to dullness, tiredness, reduced immune functioning, and due to the combination of these can leave us feeling “down”. This is the waste we must shred to stop the weight rollercoaster and get beyond loosing the easy first few kilos of weight.
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Ayurveda recognises everyone is different, so it would be silly to give a one-size fits all guide. This winter one of our colleges shed 30kg in under six months with a bit of exercise, a couple of Ayurvedic herbal food supplement products and following ayurvedic principles for their body-type. They are now happier, fitter, healthier since getting rid of the excess weight, and the beauty of Ayurvedic knowledge is that it gives you the framework to understand the signals your body is giving you.
In a consultation I also determine which governing principles in your body type or doshas need balancing, and give you a tailored program. Ayurveda has specific weight loss recommendations for each of the three doshic bodytypes: Vata, Pitta & Kapha.-Related Weight Imbalances.

Remembering there are 3 types of weight imbalances here we will discuss Vata type.

If you are Vata-predominant, you are normally thin and wiry. But that does not mean weight gain will never be a problem for you. Sometimes Vata types are thin all their lives and then suddenly put on weight because their metabolism has changed. Vata-predominant people are susceptible to mental stress because they tend to overuse or misuse their minds. When under stress they also tend to forget to eat regularly, thus disturbing their digestion, creating ama and clogging the channels. This is often the precursor to weight gain.
For a Vata person, the most important thing is to reduce mental stress and to nourish the body with light, easily digestible food. To reduce mental stress, you can practice the Transcendental Meditation® program, which has been proven in hundreds of scientific studies to be the most effective technique for dissolving mental, emotional and physical stress. It only takes twenty minutes twice a day, but its effect in improving the quality of life is enormous.

ROUTINE IS IMPORTANT
People with a predominance of Vata dosha need a regular routine, to balance the uneven, variable nature of Vata dosha. It’s important that they go to bed early, well before ten o’clock and rise early, before 6 a.m. Avoid work that is stressful to the mind, and practice relaxing exercise such as yoga and pranayama (breathing exercises). A daily oil massage is especially important for Vata, and the Youthful Skin Massage Oil helps alleviate dry skin that is often a result of Vata imbalance.The more relaxed you are, and the more regular your routine, the better you will withstand day-to-day stress and the less likely you are to fall prey to weight imbalances.

EAT A BALANCED DIET
When Vata dosha is the underlying cause of a weight problem, it’s important to eat a balanced diet that is easy to digest but also nurturing.  Avoid foods that are too hot and spicy (such as food spiced with chillies, cayenne, and black mustard seed), and at the same time avoid foods that are ice cold, such as ice cream, iced drinks, and cold, heavy desserts. Stay away from foods that are too heavy (such as aged cheeses, meats, and heavy desserts) and also avoid foods that are too light and dry, such as crackers, cold cereals, and packaged snacks. In general, avoid leftovers; frozen, canned or packaged foods, and processed foods of all kinds.

Eat foods that are fresh, organic, and whole. For breakfast try stewed apples and pears; for dinner eat whole grains and soups made with fresh vegetables and pulses; and for the main meal at noon include organic vegetables such as zucchini and squash, grains such as quinoa, light proteins such as split mung dhal soups, and light dairy products such as lassi and panir. Cook with light, nourishing oils such as ghee and olive oil and spices such as turmeric, coriander, cumin and fennel.

HERBS THAT HEAL
Specific Maharishi Ayurveda herbal food supplements are available and are excellent for individuals experiencing Vata-induced weight imbalance. (specifically tailored to either men or women)These herbal formulas strengthen resistance to stressful situations and increase creativity, mental abilities and emotional balance. They also aid the body’s natural digestion, elimination and purification systems. The overall result of boosting the body’s natural systems is an increase in energy and vitality. Someone who has gained weight due to Vata disorders would also benefit greatly from taking Tranquilitea Tea and herbal food supplement. These natural products nurture the mind and help counteract mental strain, which Vata- predominant people are often susceptible to.   Tranquilitea Tea and herbal food supplement both contain Brahmi, a herb famous for reducing stress and anxiety.
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A pilot research study that was done at the University of California in San Diego showed that Worry Free herbal food supplement was effective in reducing the effects of day-to-day mental stress. It is highly effective in alleviating occasional stress-related difficulty in falling asleep. Other herbs used in Tranquilitea Tea include Ashwagandha and Arjuna. Ashwagandha is an adaptogenic, which means that it combats physical fatigue that converts to mental dullness. Research shows that Arjuna supports the physical and emotional heart. This ancient herb Arjuna is contained in the Blissful Joy herbal food supplements, which are helpful for managing emotional stress, which can be another cause of weight gain.
For a personal consultation and Ayurveda program tailored to you individual body type, state of balance and stage of life. contact us 

Natural Healthcare for women Maharishi Ayurveda

Prevention-oriented health care for women, free from harmful side effects. Includes:

*Seminars on women’s health and practical lifestyle
*Maharishi Ayur-Veda personal health consultations**
*Maharishi Ayur-Veda health and beauty products
*Maharishi Vedic Vibration Technology for chronic disorders (MVVT)
*Maharishi Light Therapy with Gems.

**Maharishi Ayurveda Healthcare: provides unique knowledge to assist in a womens’ health promotion during: adolescence, menstration, fertility, conception,
pregnancy, childbirth, post natal care (the “blissful babies “program),menopause transition and natural health and beauty after fourty. All supported by specific
massage and purification therapies(Pancha karma),MSpa Youthful skin products of the highest quality, plus a great range of books.

This is the knowledge missing from modern healthcare, the practical and complete understanding of how to nourish and care for ourselves throughout life.

These programs are especially run by women for all women and girls.women_stress_management_52_2144130742

Mental health, mind and memory

Loss of memory is accepted as being just part of the aging process. Having a “seniors moment” is the newly coined euphemism for forgetfulness in older people. However having a poor memory is not confined to the over sixties. Young people are finding that with everyday stress and the information overload accompanying today’s lifestyle their memories are also taking a toll.
Improved Brain Functioning

Fatigue, stress, poor diet, drug and alcohol abuse are known to impair the way our brains work. In particular the prefrontal cortex (the CEO of the brain) which manages judgement, planning and foresight, is by-passed and the more primitive parts of the brain take over. As a result we become more reactionary, more emotional and less able to see the consequences of our actions.

During Transcendental Meditation the brain becomes more orderly. The front and back of the brain become more in phase and connections between them are strengthened. The CEO is brought back “online”. As a result we become more proactive, more insightful and more able to see the big picture.

In fact with TM the whole brain becomes more coherant, more lively and “switched on”. We become more responsive, vibrant and alert. Studies have shown that regular practice of TM cultures the degree of brain coherence seen in top-level managers and high-performance athletes.women_stress_management_52_2102146479
Here are six ways to enhance your memory.

1.Learn the TM technique
2.Eat Fresh fruit and Vegetables

What we eat and drink affects our mind and brain functioning. It is a common experience that if we have a few alcoholic drinks in the middle of the day the afternoon can become a bit of a daze whereas a cup of coffee is often employed to overcome the mid afternoon slump. While cold, heavy foods such as ice cream tend to make us feel mentally sluggish, munching on an apple can make us feel more alert.

Long term, eating fresh natural foods has a definite benefit to our memory and the entire brain. Fresh fruit and vegetables filled with phytochemicals have been found to boost the ability of the memory. Research shows that the biologically active compounds found naturally in plants have a positive effect on the brain. Some particularly powerful memory aids are walnuts, cashews, sunflower seeds and almonds. Walnuts, high in polyunsaturated omega 3 fatty acids are good for the brain and have been found to improve brain development in infants. Blueberries, containing the highest level of antioxidants, are also an important ingredient in your memory boosting diet.

3. Enliven your memory with Herbs
Memory enlivening phytochemicals are even more concentrated in herbs. A research study conducted on rats found that turmeric actually protected the synapses in the rat’s brains.Research published in July 2012 showed Alzheimer’s patient’s ability to remember improved significantly when turmeric was added to their diet. Turmeric’s popularity in India may account for their very low rate of Alzheimer’s cases.

Three of the most powerful brain-boosting Ayurvedic herbs are Shankapushpi (aloeweed), Bhrami (bacopa) and Gotu Kola (Indian pennywort). Shankapushpi is considered the very best herb for overall brain and mind support. It gives mental power, bliss, enhances memory and clear thinking, soothes the mind and improves overall tolerance to mental stress.

Bhrami is very balancing to the mind. It has specific hormonal-balancing effects in women so it is particularly useful in menopause. Scientific studies have shown that it can enhance memory and learning ability, provides antioxidant support for the brain and reduces the negative effects of drugs (like the antiseizure drug Phenytoin) on mental ability. Gotu Kola is the most effective herb at enhancing memory power. It contains asiatic acid, a potent inhibitor of the amyloid formation seen in Alzheimer’s disease.

Herbs assist in improving coordination between learning, retention and long-term memory. The tendency of modern researchers and pharmaceutical companies to extract the active ingredient and put it in a pill form is inferior to eating the whole plant. Studies show that herbs, fruit and vegetables contain synergistic combinations of phytochemicals that are of great benefit to the body. A single carrot contains over 100 phytochemicals which would not be available in a pill that only contained isolated beta carotene.

4. Eat Good fats
Over the past 20 years or so, fat has gained a bad reputation. However a totally fat free diet is actually damaging to the brain. Fat is necessary for the memory to function. It is important to eat high quality fats as the brain can only use the most intelligent, nutrition rich foods. Rich in Omega 3 fatty acids and other good fats, ghee provides nourishment to the mind and memory.

Olive oil is a healthy monosaturated fat that also aids in memory functioning. Heating olive oil to high temperatures causes it to oxidate and destroys its beneficial qualities. Therefore olive oil is best added to food after it has been cooked. It is best to avoid hydronated fats that raise cholesterol levels and are found in most packaged foods. Polyunsaturated fats such as corn or safflower oil are unstable and create excessive free radicals.

5. Get a good night sleep
Replacing the late night cram with a good night sleep before exams has been found to produce better results. This is because the brain is actually working its hardest while you are asleep. It is rehearsing, rehearing new information, repairing and storing new memory files. One study showed that students who slept the night before an exam significantly outperformed the students who stayed awake half the night studying.

6. Keep mentally active but not over stimulated
As with any organ in the body if you don’t use it becomes weaker. If your mind is never stimulated the brain is not encouraged to maintain or create neuronal pathways which link the different parts of the brain. Reading a book, memorising information, learning new knowledge or just doing a crossword stimulates the brain and fosters your memory skills.Decline in memory is also due to improper use of the mind.

If your mind is always busy and is never allowed time to process what has been taken in it can become stressed and fatigued. Mental and emotional stress produces secretion of the stress hormone cortisol. Produced in the adrenal glands, cortisol increases alertness and provides quick energy to the muscles for the flight or fight response needed in dangerous situations. However when chronically secreted in response to the endless stress of daily life, cortisol can damage the hippocampus, an important structure in the brain involved with memory function. Overtime too much cortisol secretion can result impermanent memory decline. Meditation is also of great benefit to the brain as it reduces stress therefore limiting the secretion of cortisol.

Next time an exam approaches don’t stress, just eat well, stay rested, exercise regularly and enjoy the amazing ability of your mind

The author, Wendy Rosenfeldt BA DipHealth(MAVHEC), is a Maharishi Vedic Health educator. She is based in Melany Qld. and travels regularly to the Gold Coast. For further information on her seminars call 0438 507 188
For a personal consultation with a Maharishi Vedic Health Educator on the Mornington Peninsula and to receive an individualised , specific program for yourself or for questions on any aspect of Maharishi Vedic Approach to Health please contact or call the Mornington Centre on 03/ 5976 2577. A full range of herbal food supplements, specific herbal teas, massage oils, books etc. are available.

Natural Pregnancy, fertility and post natal care

An Ayurvedic perspective on the growth of new life

Some women pass through pregnancy with lustrous skin and shining eyes. While others battle morning sickness, swollen ankles and over whelming fatigue. For some pregnancy can feel like a huge strain on the physiology while others enjoy the unfolding process of the growth of their child. Whatever your experience during pregnancy you can be sure that your body is doing its best to grow a healthy child.

Modern medicine insists on regular check ups during pregnancy. However problems can only be detected once they are already well established. There is little advice on diet and daily routine to ensure a healthy pregnancy. While modern medicine tends to view pregnancy as condition that is to be navigated around certain problems, Ayurveda treats it as a celebration of the unfolding development of the soul.

If a mother-to-be begins pregnancy in poor health the following 9 months may be uncomfortable for her. However nature ensures that her body is prepared to be in the best possible state for growing a child. A woman’s physiology is designed to grow a baby from a single cell and provide all the nourishment needed until the infant is at least 6 months of age. All the so-called ‘symptoms’ of pregnancy are in fact necessary aspects of this process.

Morning sickness may appear to strike randomly however there is a reason and purpose for it. During pregnancy the body is creating the optimal environment in which to grow a living soul. If the physiology contains toxins and impurities they are eliminated and this is what is experienced as morning sickness. To avoid or reduce morning sickness, purification must begin before conception. Eliminating alcohol, caffeine and junk food and favouring fresh food is a good way to prepare yourself. Drinking warm water is also helpful to clean the physiology of impurities.

Nausea around certain smells and tastes in pregnancy is the body’s way of avoiding food of little nutritional value or food that is unnecessary for the growing child. During pregnancy the body goes into a state of hightened sensitivity and attempts to reduce any unhealthy substances. Many women find that they dislike the tastes of their previously favourite foods or give up alcohol and smoking because they no longer enjoy the effect.

Increased awareness is not merely confined to tastes in food. Women can become more sensitive to everything in their environment. While women may lament their decline in resilience, this sensitivity can be used as a guide for what is nourishing for your growing baby. One mother-to be was forced to leave a concert of her favourite rock band as her baby began kicking so intensely inside.

Just as your thoughts and feelings affect your own physiology, everything that you think, hear, see, feel and do will affect your growing child. This is not to say that if you have temporary experiences of fear or sadness that your unborn baby will suffer. However if you are feeling love towards your child and eagerly awaiting the birth, your child will thrive mentally and physically on those feelings. A woman may feel more delicate emotionally and physically during pregnancy and it is important for her to be in nurturing, caring environment.

Food cravings are subtle signals from the body’s cells telling what is needed. During pregnancy desires for certain food is coming from what the baby needs at that particular time. By denying yourself you may actually deprive the baby of specific nutrients necessary for a particular stage of growth. However this does not mean that if you have a craving for sweet food you should devour tubs of ice cream or boxes of chocolate. Instead favour fresher, healthier food such as apple crumble or rice pudding so you satisfy the desire but don’t over load the digestive system.

Eating a diet containing a variety of tastes and textures is a good way to ensure nourishment and satisfaction for both you and your growing child. A diet of warm, nourishing, well cooked, wholesome food is best during pregnancy. Milk, ghee, rice, dates, almonds and raisins are especially suitable for a pregnant woman. Spicy curries and heavy food such as pizzas, chocolate and cheese are best avoided.

Taking care of digestion is also important during the nine months and can become more challenging as the digestive system is squashed to accommodate the growing child. Eating lighter, soupier food and eating your main meal at lunchtime and less at night will allow you to feel comfortable after meals right up until the baby is due.

Desperately trying to consume the amounts of protein etc that are advised by nutrionalists during pregnancy can result in feeling heavy and bloated. While it is important to get adequate nutrition, overloading the system results in the accumulation of toxins and impurities. By following the Ayurvedic principles such as sitting to eat, not eating too fast, avoiding excessive amounts of liquid especially cold drinks and eating in a settled environment, maximum nutrition is derived from the food.

While fatigue is a common experience in pregnancy it should not just be ignored or pushed through. A lot is taking place in your physiology in the creation of a new life and extra rest is needed to cater for this. Exercise should be regular but without strain. Walking and swimming are ideal and are best done in the morning. Yoga is also beneficial and a good preparation for giving birth.

It is important to remember the uniqueness of this situation and to adapt accordingly. Trying to maintain the same level of activity and habitually eating food without recourse to cravings and desires is not conducive to the health of the mother or child.

According to the ancient Ayurvedic physician Charaka a baby is comprised of four parts: one from the mother, one from the father, one from the mother’s intake during pregnancy (food, emotions, perceptions, environment) and one from nature or consciousness. The health of the parents is of great importance both mentally and physically. Meditation is of great benefit to the expectant parents and can help to overcome feelings of fatigue.

In the Vedic tradition, as each sense develops a baby shower is given to honor it. In the third month of pregnancy the sense of sight is celebrated by beautiful things to look at. The forth month honors the sense of taste with delicious food. The sense of hearing is celebrated in the fifth month with melodious and soothing music. The shower celebrating the developing sense of smell includes delightful aromas while at the final shower clothing and gold are given to honor the sense of touch.

By adopting the Ayurvedic principles during pregnancy you can really enjoy the growth of the new life within and be best prepared for your new life as a parent.

The author, Wendy Rosenfeldt BA DipHealth(MAVHEC), is a Maharishi Vedic Health educator. She is based in Melany Qld. and travels regularly to the Gold Coast. For further information on her seminars call 0438 507 188
For a personal consultation to receive an individualised , specific program for yourself or for questions on any aspect of Maharishi Vedic Approach to Health please call or contact the Mornington Centre on 03/ 5976 2577. A full range of herbal food supplements, specific herbal teas, massage oils, books etc. are available at the Mornington Centre.

Menopause , menstration and hormonal health

Menopause is often accompanied by debilitating symptoms, hot flushes, mood swings, insomnia, weight gain, lethargy and depression. Fear of osteoporosis and perceived loss of strength are also prevalent in our culture. In our western, youth idealizing society, for many women menopause carries with it the dread of growing old, of loss of respect as they move further from the perceived ideal of superficial perfection and closer to the stereotypical doddery, little old lady. In other cultures, postmenopausal women are revered for their wisdom, intuition and life experience. In the traditional culture of India, they become the teachers of the young and the keepers of knowledge of life.

A woman’s physiology is a finely tuned instrument capable of creating, maintaining and sustaining life. Hormonal cycles maintain a delicate balance preparing for monthly ovulation, menstruation, and then, when the physiology is over child bearing years, menopause. When balanced, a women’s physiology can experience these changes without discomfort or emotional distress. Pain, moodiness, fluctuations in weight and low energy are just symptomatic of imbalance.

Modern Medicine tends to treat menopause as a disease of estrogen deficiency, offering women the magic bullet approach of Hormone Replacement Therapy. Nature is intelligent. Menopause is a natural change in the physiology and occurs for a good reason. Cessation of periods occurs to prevent childbirth at a time when the body can no longer comfortably cope with it. The loss of iron, blood and protein, associated with menstruation, is curtailed at a time when your body needs to work harder to get adequate nutrition.

The body adjusts its hormone levels accordingly and continues to produce estrogen after menopause. The combination of hormones is different but adequate to support the physiology during the transition. The body produces different types of estrogen to suit the time of life. Estradiol, the most potent, is predominant in our reproductive years. Estriol, produced mainly by the placenta, is highest during pregnancy while estrone is more abundant after menopause. Introducing high levels of estrogen upsets the physiology’s natural hormonal backup system.

Many symptoms attributed to lessoning levels of estrogen can also be found in men of a similar age. Loss of muscle tone, skin firmness, changes in complexion and figure can be better understood as signs of ageing, stress and poor lifestyle. A study of more than 1500 men and women in rural England showed little difference between the genders for midlife symptoms. The only exception was for hot flushes and vaginal dryness.

Cultural differences further highlights the effects of lifestyle on a women’s health as opposed to making estrogen decline the scapegoat. In tribal and rural India, women living low stress, simple lives pass through menopause without the myriad of symptoms experienced by western women. Physical activity and a diet of wholegrains and fresh fruit and have a balancing effect on fluctuating hormone levels. There is no word for hot flushes in the Japanese language as they are so rare due to the Japanese diet of soy and phytoestrogens, which mimics the effects of estrogen in the body. Even in our culture 20% of women do not experience hot flushes and debilitating menopausal symptoms.

How easily a woman passes through menopause is a reflection of her overall state of health. Symptoms are the body’s way of crying out for health. Suppressing them with painkillers does not solve the problem and only serves to create side effects further down the track. To experience a natural, balanced menopause it is necessary to understand and adjust the lifestyle and dietary habits, which are causing the symptoms.

Maharishi Vedic Approach to Health does this by:
Treating the physiology as a whole
Treating each woman according to her unique physiology
Enlivening the physiology’s healing intelligence

Maharishi Vedic Approach to Health (MVAH) utilizes the understanding of the dosha theory. Everything in the universe is made up of the three controlling principles in nature called doshas.

Vata dosha, expressed as space and air, is like the wind and is responsible for all movement in the universe. It is quick, light, dry, cold and changeable by nature. In the physiology, Vata governs thinking, talking, breathing, circulation and the menstrual cycle. Anything that requires movement has a predominance of Vata dosha.

Pitta is like the fire and is found in all transformation and metabolizing processes. It is hot, sharp, intense and exhibits the red, orange, yellow colours of the fire. Pitta governs the processing that takes place in the intellect and visual apparatus as well as digestion, cellular metabolism and body temperature.

Kapha, expressed as earth and water, governs all cohesion and structure in the environment. By nature Kapha is slow, heavy, sweet, stable, cold and sticky. It is responsible for all lubrication and matter in the physiology and therefore governs digestive juices, mucous and tears.

Everything we do, see, hear, feel, touch, taste or smell will increase or decrease the doshas. This effect can either create balance or imbalance depending on the unique state of our physiology.

Each of us has a different combination of doshas and therefore needs different advice to suit our unique physiology. A woman with a predominance of Kapha may need to keep up her regular exercise program as she goes through menopause while for a woman with more Vata in her nature, rest may be the key to maintaining balance. Appropriate diet differs also depending on our doshas. Spicy, sour or acidic food will aggravate Pitta dosha increasing the tendency towards hot flushes. The amount of such foods that can be tolerated again depends on your unique constitutional type. Small amounts of spice can be useful in stimulating the sluggishness of Kapha while the sour taste of lemon or yogurt can be quite soothing when Vata is out of balance.

Menopausal symptoms indicate which dosha is out of balance. It is important to note here that anyone can have any dosha out of balance due to the effects of lifestyle and diet, regardless of their nature. Excess Vata gives vaginal dryness, anxiety, mood swings, dry skin, constipation, forgetfulness and insomnia. Too much Pitta results in hot flushes, heavy bleeding, irritability, increased bowel movements and skin problems. Kapha out of balance causes excessive weight gain, fluid retention, breast swelling and lethargy. It is possible to have more than one dosha out of balance and this may change due to the season or even the time of day. Pulse diagnosis is used to determine your constitutional type and which doshas are out of balance.

Knowledge of the doshas brings simplicity to the myriad of menopausal symptoms. By pacifying the dosha that is out of balance, you are treating many of the problems at once and actually getting to the underlying core. To soothe the dry, spacey qualities of Vata, follow a regular routine, get adequate rest and have an oil massage. Vata is pacified by warm, cooked foods with sweet sour and salty tastes. To cool down Pitta’s fire take time out for relaxation and being in nature. Avoid skipping meals and favour bitter, sweet and astringent tastes. Getting up early, exercising and reducing rich creamy foods offsets the heaviness of Kapha. To balance Kapha eat whole grains and cooked vegetables with a predominance of bitter, astringent and pungent flavours.

Nature has provided a smorgasbord of medicines to balance and maintain our health that exists outside of the pharmaceutical industry. We are surrounded by an abundance naturally occurring foods, herbs and spices, yet many reach towards the synthesised bottled version. In many cases the western medical model of extracting the active ingredient from a plant has been found to both create side effects and also be less effective. Many apparently inactive ingredients have turned out to play significant health giving roles. Researchers initially dismissed Bioflavanoids, a class of molecules found in plants. They have now been found to have antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, anti-allergic, anti-ulcerogenic and hepato-proctective agents.

Phytoestrogen found in vegetables, cereals, grains and legumes, are similar in structure to human estrogen and affect hormonal balance in a woman’s body. When they are naturally occurring in food they do not create side effects. Your body is used to them as your genes have naturally evolved with them over millions of years. In food they occur in a wide variety so no hormonal signal can overwhelm your body’s delicate hormonal balance.

One study showed a 50-70% reduction in heart attack risk in postmenopausal women taking Vitamin E naturally occurring in their diet while only a 35-40% reduction was found in those taking vitamin E as a supplement. Some members of the group taking the supplement were found to have increases in strokes and bleeding. Another study showed that those with a high Vitamin intake from diet and supplements had less benefit than those with a healthy diet.

Randomly adding hormones and sythesised ingredients to the physiology can upset its natural balance and create problems worse than the one initially being treated. Hormone Replacement Therapy has been found to elevate risks of gall bladder disease and blood clots both in the legs and lungs. The risk of developing breast cancer is shown to increase by up to 40% in women on the HRT program. Taking doses of estrogen alone has been found to increase the possibility of uterine cancer. However estrogen and progestin together nearly doubles the risk of breast cancer after ten years.

Maharishi Ayurveda supports your overall health during menopause by strengthening your physiology’s own healing intelligence and balancing mechanisms. A state of relative stability is maintained in the body by homeostatic feedback loops. When the weather is hot our body perspires and our veins and arteries expand to cool us down. This balancing device allows us to maintain a body temperature of about 37 degrees regardless of the surrounding environment.

Homeostatic feedback loops and our internal hormonal production systems are better able to do their job when stress, irregularity of meals, sleep and exercise is limited. If the physiology is constantly trying to adapt to external changes it expends a lot of energy just trying to keep up. Long term irregularities in the internal biorhythms such as cycles of hormones, sleep, digestion, elimination and other cyclical functions can influence the timing of your hormonal secretions. If your body is clogged with impurities due to poor diet and lifestyle, the delivery of hormones to your body’s tissues will be obstructed even if your hormone supply is adequate.

By bringing balance to your internal cycles and clearing away wastes and impurities, your body can best absorb the decreasing estrogen available. Fatigue, weight gain, depression and hot flushes are reduced when your physiology is acting at its most efficient.

Menopause need not be a time of fear and discomfort. By taking a holistic look at your life and making some health promoting adjustments it can be a time to purify and balance your self. Doshic imbalances are just a result of inappropriate diet and lifestyle choices and can be rectified as easily as they were created. Drinking warm water that has been boiled first and getting regular gentle exercise helps to eliminating blockages in the physiology. Support your physiology’s healing mechanisms by regular routines and stress reduction. Indulge in nature’s supermarket of phytoestrogens and vitamins naturally occurring in food. Most importantly enjoy menopause as a transition to an era of greater wisdom, respect and good health.

The author, Wendy Rosenfeldt BA DipHealth(MAVHEC), is a Maharishi Vedic Health educator. She is based in Melany Qld. and travels regularly to the Gold Coast. For further information on her seminars call  0438 507 188
For a personal consultation to receive an individualised , specific program for yourself or for questions on any aspect of Maharishi Vedic Approach to Health please call or contact the Mornington Centre on 03/ 5976 2577. A full range of herbal food supplements, specific herbal teas, massage oils, books etc. are available at the Mornington Centre.

Highly recommended book for it’s specific and extensive menopause knowledge with practicle tips and herbal at home mixes ‘The Ageless Woman’ Nancy Lansdorf M.D.see left margin of this webpage.

For full details of the above programs contact:
Suzanne Edwards DipHealth(MAVHEC),Certified Teacher of TM with 22 years experience in family and women’s health
Mornington Meditation Centre, 24 Serenity Way Mornington Vic 3931
Ph 0488 76 2577 or email
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Disclaimer
The sole purpose of this information is to provide information about the tradition of Ayurveda. This information is not intended for use in the diagnosis, prevention or cure of any disease. If you have any serious, acute or chronic health concern, please consult a trained health professional who can fully assess your needs and address them effectively. If you are seeking the advice of a trained Ayurvedic expert, call our Health Educators or e-mail us for the number of a consultant in your area.

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