Last week I went to a leading pharmacy where you can buy from medication to perfumes. I was looking for a Floradix product for a client so I went straight to the supplement aisle.
It was the first time I actually realised the amount of digestive aids, nasal sprays, minerals and vitamins, weight loss supplements, hay fever tablets, erectile dysfunction creams/drugs, herbal capsules, aromatherapy oils, hay fever and allergy relief tablets, probiotics, homeopathic formulations, tinctures, menopause supports, sleeping and low mood capsules and teas just to mention some products.
Please don't get me wrong. I'm not against variety, quite on the contrary. The fact we are offered a wide rage of options is truly amazing and I'm grateful for that. In a way It's like shopping for trousers I sometimes feel overwhelmed but if I know exactly what I need/want, the pros are undeniable.
Going back to supplements, I had the same feeling when I visited a local health shop. Have you noticed the various beneficial herbs, teas, spices, grains, oils or herbal compounds? And every day I go, there’s a new kind of miraculous product being advertised.
This kept me thinking. How do you know the product you’ve chosen is the one you'll benefit from? How do you choose a supplement and how do you assess it's working? Trial and error? If ashwagandha and ginseng offer similar benefits, which one would you opt for? Both of them or either based on the marketing? Research? Friend's recommendations?
Ayuverdic assessment relates to digestion mainly. Not everybody digests the same food (and thus supplements) in the same way. That's why two people could have had the same meal but one got bloated and the other did not.
And so, how can digestion be assessed? Here are some tips: do you pass your bowel and urine regularly, easily and without discomfort or pain? How’s your appetite? Do you really feel hungry when you have your meals or do you eat because you're supposed to? Do you feel any discomfort like bloating, heaviness, reflux, acidity, indigestion after meals? Do you feel energetic? Have you got cravings? How’s your sleep? Do you wake up fresh? And in terms of your mood, are you feeling anxious, nervous, angry or depressed?
Yes, practically everything depends on how well our digestive power (Agni) works and the benefits should show in our emotional and physical wellbeing. This is a fundamental principle in Ayurveda and Neuroscience expresses it in the gut-brain connection.
So, has the product you have selected helps you to achieve this or has it only masked the cause by relieving the symptoms?
The Mind-Body Revolution has so much to offer. The key is to listen to your body, observe yourself and find guidance if needed. If you have a doubt, ask an expert, it's unlikely to make progress in life without sorting out doubts. Then decide what to try, natural does not always mean safe and everybody is different. Practitioners (in any field) can give you the tools to discover yourself but only YOU have the power to decide and choose what’s best for you. It’s better to be a mindful mind-body revolutionary with eyes wide open.