In the age of modern medicines, where one would run to take a pill to cure even minor health ailments, it is good to stop and think if our grandmothers would have done the same thing. Perhaps not. But those days were different, people were naturally healthier and had a stronger immunity. Maybe they did something differently?
Ayurvedic herb infused water is a common ancient practice that has been used for years by naturopaths to heal ailing bodies. Due to the easy availability of herbs and spices, you can easily make these healing waters at home. The idea to prepare healing water by infusing ayurvedic herbs and spices is to extract important oils of the plant which have several healing properties. Water is a powerful therapeutic tool in Ayurveda and soaking particular herbs or spices can enhance its healing power. Here are seven varieties of healing waters with different health benefits as suggested by Shilpa Arora, Macrobiotic Nutritionist, and Health Practitioner.
1. Fenugreek (Methi) Water
Slightly bitter and yellow-colored fenugreek or methi seed is a storehouse of medicinal properties and can cure many health problems. Loaded with antioxidants and anti-inflammatory properties, soaked fenugreek seeds in water overnight imparts its pale yellow hue. According to Shilpa, “Methi water is beneficial for the prevention of water retention in the body. It also prevents bloating.” The amino acid compounds present in fenugreek seeds help in promoting insulin secretion in the pancreas. This process helps in controlling blood sugar levels for people with diabetes.
2. Herbal Wood Glass (Vijaysar) Water
Also known as Indian Kino or Malabar Kino, Vijaysar is the most famous for controlling diabetes. It is widely used in Ayurveda to cure various conditions like obesity, diarrhea, and eczema. It has compounds like Epicatechin, Marsupsin, and Pterosupin which help in reducing blood glucose in people with diabetes. It also regenerates beta cells of the pancreas to produce insulin naturally. Soak Vijaysar in water overnight and drink the brownish medicated water early in the morning to get the best results.
3. Tulsi Water
Apart from being considered holy, Ayurveda respects the Holy Basil or Tulsi for its medicinal properties. The leaves, when soaked in water, do wonders for the skin and heal many health problems. Tulsi has antibiotic, anti-fungal and antibacterial properties that help prevent fever and cold and also keep your skin and hair healthy. Tulsi water acts as an excellent diuretic and also detoxifies the kidneys. It helps reduce uric acid levels in the blood and cleanse the kidneys.
4. Pathimugam (Indian red wood) Water
Pathimugam or Indian red wood soaked in water is a favorite thirst quencher in Kerala. The bark of the tree is used to attain medicinal benefits. Kerala Ayurvedic Water is a hot drinking water, slightly pinkish. This herbal water can cure anti-thirst, used as a blood purifier, anti- diabetic, improvement of complexion and several other properties. It can also cure kidney disorders, skin diseases, cholesterol. All you need to do is to boil the water with Indian red wood for 2-3 minutes, strain the water and consume it with your meals or any time of the day.
5. Cinnamon Water
Cinnamon or “Dalchini” is popular spice in the Indian kitchen. True to its name, it tastes sweet and has a very prominent aroma. It is a favorite spice made from the inner bark of the tree called Cinnamomum. It is loaded with antioxidants and protects the body from oxidative damage caused by free radicals. Its anti-inflammatory properties help protect the body from infections and tissue damage. Cinnamon water is responsible for reducing blood sugar levels by slowing down the breakdown of carbohydrates in the digestive tract after a meal. The antimicrobial properties present in cinnamon may also prevent tooth decay and bad breath.
6. Coriander Seed Water
Cilantro or “Dhania” is widely used to add flavor to various dishes. Coriander seeds contain plant derived chemical compounds that are high in antioxidants and health promoting properties. According to Shilpa Arora, coriander seed water helps in curing water retention and acidity due to its cooling properties. Drinking coriander seed water also helps in curing mouth ulcers due to the presence of citronellol which acts as an antiseptic. Soak the seeds in warm water for 10 minutes, strain it and drink it up.
7. Triphala Water
Triphala is known for curing acute constipation due to its laxative properties. Commonly available in powdered form, Triphala is mixed in water and consumed to regulate your bowel movements and cure constipation. Triphala is a powdered mix of three fruits: Amalaki, Bibhitaki, and Haritaki. These three fruits are dried, powdered and mixed to make one great condiment called Triphala. It acts as a detoxifier and makes your skin glow naturally. The presence of antioxidants helps in boosting immunity against cold, flu and other diseases. You can add Triphala powder to warm water and consume it regularly.
These healing waters must be consumed according to the needs of your body. Therefore it is advisable for the patients with diabetes or other ailments to refer to your doctor before kick starting a new routine.