Saturday, May 29, 2010

Pathanjali Pranayam - Part-3

This part highlights the mudras, their effect and different types of Pranayams with our personal experience with respect to "HOW MUCH TO DO".
We are keen to indicate how much to do for 2 reasons:
1) Gives an insight on optimising your time and still reap the benefits. Normally takes 25 to 30 min.
2) For beginners,  there would be discouraging symptoms like mild pains here and there till the body metabolism is put to positive changes and the bad actors in the body and mind are pacified.

However, if someone desires to follow few of those, the must are Bastrika, Kabalbhati, Anulom Vilom and Udgeet Pranayam. Enjoy the art of breathing. In this part we have included the first four pranayams and  the remaining will follow in Part-4.

Sit either in any of the Asanas, viz. Sukhasana, Arddha Padmasana or Sidhasana or Padmasana, whichever you find convenient. The sheet or cloth (cotton or wool etc.) on which you sit must be a non-conductor of electricity.

Types of Mudras commonly used while doing Pranayams:

The tip of the thumb touches the tip of the index finger, stimulating knowledge and ability. The index finger is symbolized by Jupiter, and the thumb represents the ego. Gyan Mudra imparts receptivity & calmness.

The first joint of the index finger is bent under the first joint of the thumb, imparting active knowledge.

Tip of middle finger (symbolized by Saturn) touches the tip of the thumb, giving patience.

Tip of the ring finger (symbolized by Uranus or the Sun) touches the tip of the thumb, giving energy, health and intuition.

Tip of little finger (Mercury) touches tip of thumb for clear and intuitive communication.

Types of Pranayams

1 Bhastrika Pranayam
Breathe in smoothly  through both nostrils as deep as possible to fill the lungs and then exhale out slowly and completely to evacuate the lungs. Breathe in and breathe out with equal force. The breadth should be filled in the lungs upto the diaphragm, and not in stomach. Do not try to over practice, stop immediately when you feel tired.
How much to do
First Six Months:  5 strokes three times      After Six Months 10 to 15 strokes three times

2 Kapalbhati Pranayam
Kapalbhati Pranayam is a wonder breathing exercise. Kapalbhati is sanjeevani (one that infuses life) on earth. Numerous patients have gained healthy and happy life by adopting it in their daily life.
Sit in a comfortable asana with normal breathing. Inhale normally and exhale forcefully (moderate force). Abdominal area also makes inward and outward movements and moderate force is applied to the Manipura, Svadhisthana and Muladhara Chakra. While forcefully exhaling,  the stomach should go inward in the same rhythm and move outwards alongwith inhale.
How much to do
First Six Months: 10 strokes three times   After Six Months  20 to 30 strokes three times

3 Bahya Pranayam
Breathe inside deeply then exhale completely to evacuate lungs as much as possible.
Now, bend you head/ neck forward and try to touch your chin to the chest (Jalandhar Bandha or Throat lock), lift upwards the muscles of diaphragm (Uddiyan Bandha or Abdominal lock). This will pull your stomach muscles inwards and also lift the muscles of the groin area.  Stay in this position for 5 to 10 counts,  then slowly return to normal position and breathe normally.
How much to do
First Six Months: 3 times   After Six Months 5 times

4 Anulom Vilom Pranayam
This does wonders in reducing your BP. Every time you come out of your boss's cabin after heated arguments, sit in your chair and do anulom vilom and release the pressure !!!
Close the right nostril with the right hand thumb. ‘Inhale’ slowly through the left nostril till the lungs are completely filled (Puraka). Then close the left nostril with the second and third finger and open the right nostril to ‘exhale’ but slowly (Rechaka). Exhale till the lungs are completely empty. The process of ‘inhale with left nostril and exhale with right’ is “one cycle”. Then ‘inhale with right nostril and exhale with left’ is the “second cycle” and so on. While doing anulom vilom,  please remember to sit straight upright and face looking straight. You may close your eyes and experience the change in your blood circulation pattern  as you do anulom vilom.
How much to do
First Six Months: 10 strokes three times   After Six Months 20 strokes three times

Courtesy:Baba Ramdev's demonstration on ZEE TV and
Reference :

"It is your birth-right to stay disease free, healthy, slim, fit, look beautiful & younger, in complete peace of mind and get back robust health." Baba Ramdev

Saturday, May 22, 2010

Pathanjali Pranayam - Part-2

I have come across the following successful cases within my very close circle of relatives and friends and I narrate to justify the effect of Pranayam and to provide an insight and motivate you all to possibly adopt in your busy or lazy life style.   It costs you only 20 to 30 minutes of your valuable time. It is worth living trouble free life instead of searching for the hospital that caters to your medical needs supported by your Health Insurance!!.

Case-1: The gentleman had very high triglyceride for over 15 years despite  regular work outs and controlling the diet. Doctor related this to his body metobolism and put him on medicine.  He  adpoted pranayam and within 3 months the level came down from 300 to 126.
Case-2: The gentleman with high BP now lives with normal BP within 15 days from the start of the pranayam and Anilom Vilom does wonders for BP. His level was 95/160 got normalised to 85/125 and bp medicine stopped.
Case-3:  A lady with thyroid problem,  her health has improved and thyroid problem brought under control with pranayam and in paerticular the Ujjai pranayam does wonders.

The Part-3 will address,  how to do and how much to do . Beginners should  note how much to do because  the bad actors in your body tends to discourage you by developing some shooting pains now and then. Hence it is preferable to start in low profile and gradually increase over a period of time to avoid such discouraging symptoms till your body metabolism is slowly put to change. Your body is the right indicator to know how much to do in the initial stage. Do not stretch or overdo.

Some rules of Pranayam

1. Select a clean and peaceful place for doing Pranayam.

2. Sit either in any of the Asanas, viz. Sukhasana, Padmasana, Arddha Padmasana or Sidhasana whichever you find convenient.

3. The sheet or cloth (cotton or wool etc.) on which you sit must be a non-conductor of electricity.

4. Breathe only through the nose, because by doing so the air which you take in, is filtered.

5. Like 'Yog', Pranayam should also be performed four or five hours after taking food. In the morning Pranayam should be done after finishing daily routine acts like cleansing mouth, emptying of bowels etc

6. Keep your mind calm and composed. However, Pranayam can also calm down the disturbed mind and keep one happy.

7. Methods of Pranayam may be varied according your own physical make up and mental attitude.

8. Do not over do or put pressure or force while doing pranayam. If you feel fatigued in the course of doing Pranayam , rest for sometime and then begin deep breathing, which will remove the fatigue.

9. Pregnant women, hungry persons, persons suffering from fever and those who are lustful having no control on their passions should not do Pranayam.
10. Do not strain yourself while doing 'Kumbhak' i.e. retaining the breathed air inside or keeping the air out after exhaling (Breathing in is called 'puraka', retaining the breathed air in is called 'Kumbhak' and exhaling the air is called 'Recak').

11. Pranayam does not mean just breathing in, keeping the breathed air in and exhaling it. It also means establishing control on the entire breathing process, and maintaining mental equilibrium, and concentration of mind.

12. Peaceful mind is very essential while doing Pranayam .

13. See that while doing Pranayam , none of your organs such as mouth, eyes, nose, etc. feels any strain. All the organs of the body should be kept in normal condition. While doing Pranayam sit in an erect posture. Keep your spine and neck straight. This is essential for reaping the full benefits.
14. You may start by watching others. But it is always preferable to take expert guidance to fine tune to achieve perfection. It is for sure that pranayam does not cause any negative effect if it is not done accurately but the benefits will be slow.

Following the above rules and practising pranayam is solely individual skill and passion and blogger does not bear any responsibility whatsoever.

Courtesy:Baba Ramdev's demonstration on ZEE TV and

"To keep the body in good health is a duty... otherwise we shall not be able to keep our mind strong and clear." ~Buddha

Sunday, May 16, 2010

100th post - A must read - For the benefit of your health

Chitchatcrossroads has reached a milestone and this is my 100th post. I would like to dedicate to my family, friends, my blog followers and  blogger friends.  I have been trying to maintain a mix of posts instead of focussing unidirectional and  received over whelming response and support from my blog readers. Thanks to all of them who have posted comments and encouraged me.

The next 3 posts will be on Pranayamams and  keen on posting these as I have seen a successful case in my family who has a good control of the Type-2 diabetes, stopped BP medicine and living a normal life with normal diet/with minimal diabetic medicines. I have come across similar success stories in Abu Dhabi among our friends who have adopted the Panthajali Pranayam. This post is by my husband who is practising Patanjali Pranayam.
Chapter-1  Benefits of "PATHANJALI PRANAYAMAM"

Different treatise advocating or dealing with the subject of Pranayama describe several methods and each of them has its own importance. However, it is not possible for most people to do all these exercises daily. Hence,  seven simple methods of Pranayamam evolved , which incorporate into themselves, almost all the peculiarities of Pranayama rendering them scientific and useful from a spiritual point of view. All these seven types of Pranayama can be done, as a routine and in a time bound programme of about 20 minutes. The person who does these exercises daily and regularly can attain following benefits.

1. All the three Doshas (Humors) - Vata , pitta and Kapha get adjusted in proper proportion and abnormalities in them are removed.
2. Digestive system improves and diseases pertaining to digestive organs are cured.

3. Diseases pertaining to lungs, heart and brain are also cured.

4. Obesity, Diabetes, Cholesterol, Constipation, Flatulence, Acidity, Respiratory troubles, Allergy, Migraine, High blood pressure, diseases pertaining to kidneys, sexual disorders of males and females etc. are also cured/controlled.

5. Resistance against diseases is stepped up. Immunity develops.

6. Hereditary diseases like diabetes and heart disease  can be avoided if started at an early age.

7. Falling of hair or  premature graying, appearance of wrinkles on face or other parts of the body at young age, diminition of eye sight, forgetfulness, etc. are relieved and process of ageing is retarded.

8. Face becomes bright, luminous and calm.

9. Energy Chakra is cleansed and enables the practitioner to awaken the Kundalini.

10. Mind becomes stable and tranquil. A sense of contentment and enthusiasm or zeal develops. Conditions like depression is relieved.

11. Performance of yogic exercises like meditation will be easy.

12. All the physical and mental disorders and abnormalities are cured and toxins eradicated from the body.

13. Freedom from negative thinking is achieved and the mind develops the habit of positive and constructive thinking.

Courtesy:Baba Ramdev's demonstration on ZEE TV and

'Inhale and God approaches you. Hold the inhalation and God remains with you.  Exhale and you approach God.  Hold the exhalation and surrender to God '- Krishnamacharya

Friday, May 7, 2010

Today's yummy snack - Jaal moodi / Masala moodi

I got introduced to Jaal Moodi way back, when I lived in Durgapur and later in Calcutta. It used to be our time pass while travelling from Durgapur to Calcutta during weekends. Burdwan station is famous for this Jaal Moodi and even today the authentic taste lingers.  Later, I lived through several cities in North India and Middle East and tried to get the same taste in the chaat shops but to my disappointment. During my last visit to Chennai,while shopping at the Spencer's Mall, came across a chaat shop in the second floor who  brought back the nostalgic taste. To acquire the perfect flavour, the tip is the dash of mustard oil. Here it goes,

Finely chopped cucumber
Finely chopped onions
Finely chopped green chillies
Black chenna (boiled)
Potato boiled and diced
Chopped Coriander
Roasted groundnuts
Diced Tomatoes
Kala Namak (Rock Salt)
Chaat Masala
Mustard Oil
Puffed Rice/Murmura/Arisi pori (Dry and Crisp)

Mix 2 cups of Puffed Rice with a tablespoonful each of Chenna, Roasted ground nuts, Potato, Tomato, Cucumber, Onion, Sev,  half teaspoon each of Kala namak, Green chillies, Coriander leaves. Add Chaat masala ,Lime juice to your taste.   Finally, a dash of mustard oil to the mix and enjoy!!!!!!!!

"Part of the secret of success in life is to eat what you like and let the food fight it out inside. ~Mark Twain"

Saturday, May 1, 2010

Is ignorance a bliss?????

Recently, one of my close friend was complaining of  severe stomach ache.  The pain was unbearable and extended for more than a week and it was not subsiding with painkillers. There were numerous suggestions and kitchen remedies pouring in and dutifully, she observed everything but in vain. I strongly suggested that she should stop self medication and visit a doctor soon. After a couple of days of me making the suggestion, when I called her, she was a bit reluctant to speak about the subject and began to give me excuses for not having visited the doctor yet. I was quite upset by her sluggishness and decided to take the first step of escorting her to the hospital myself.

She was too scared to even think she would have any problem. After the physical examination, Dr.wanted a few tests to be done. The basic tests were OK with her but when it came to ultrasound, she out-rightly refused and would not budge. After so much coaxing and advises, I took her for the scan. When the results came, they diagnosed a growth in her uterus and further investigations need to be done. I cannot describe the night when we received the result. She decided that she is having cancer and that is the end. No amount of consolation or cajoling was working with her. It was just sobbing and crying. I felt really bad for the situation but things had to be done. A Hystoscopy was conducted and we were awaiting the biopsy result. The results were to be got after a couple of days. When we called the hospital, they conveyed that the Pathologist wanted a couple more days in stain to get the exact result. This again raised the blood pressure and tension of all of us at our homes, and you can imagine the plight of my friend. She was throwing tantrums, would not eat but just keep telling what she would be missing in life, especially the marriage of her children, etc etc. (Now, she had reconciled to herself that she is having cancer and she could remember someone in her family had similar symptoms too )

Finally, when we received the result, it was a benign growth but had to be operated upon. On hearing that it was not malignant, I can still remember her sobbing of relief. There was the happy ending with the surgery and she is recovering well.

As we have the desire to get educated of various symptoms for various diseases either through hearsay or thro' the net and television, when we have a simple health problem, immediately our minds work faster and co-relates to the extremes like cancer or any such major illness. This induces so much stress and pressure to the self and the family till the results are obtained. No doubt, we should be alert of any abnormal symptoms of our body and get diagnosed at once, but this acquired knowledge proves to increase mental strain and unwanted tension. So, now I am pondering if Ignorance is bliss but at what cost????? Confused !!!!!!!!

"We live longer than our forefathers; but we suffer more from a thousand artificial anxieties and cares. They fatigued only the muscles, we exhaust the finer strength of the nerves. ~Edward George Bulwer-Lytton"
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