Sunday, July 07, 2013

Hay Fever and Yoga

Warm Sunday afternoons would normally be the weather one craves for England, however this year's summer has been different for me so far. Some of my friends are telling me that this is a sign of having become purely "british" now as I have managed to catch what is called "hay fever". It has been more than 5 years that I have been living here, but this is the first of its kind experience for me. Constantly running nose, itchy eyes, mild forehead ache, coughing and sneezing - all this comes with being allergic to pollens. During summers when the rest of the country craves for hot weather, people suffering from hay fever crave for cold and wet weather as that reduces the pollen count in the air. Therefore, today (warm Sunday afternoon) whilst the rest of the Britian is out under the sun in the parks playing or getting sun-tanned, I am sitting in the house with windows as closed as possible (don't forget that we would normally not have fans or coolers in England) and typing this blog post. Sigh!!

Most of my work colleagues have either themselves or their spouses suffering from this annoying condition (it is not a disease and therefore not communicable). Last week, a colleague sitting beside me had to rush her husband to the hospital A&E due to him being coughing incessantly. It was then diagonsed as chest infection (caused by stored cough from hay fever which he did not manage to clean out of his body). My routine at home has been that of either cleaning or blowing my nose or sneezing. Poor nose - I have been making it suffer so much! But this way at least I am making sure that all the cough is coming out instead of getting stored inside and jamming other organs.

There are some Indian yogic remedies that can help sooth and to some extent also cure this allergy. Some of them are listed below for those who are able to do them (I should myself follow them instead of preaching, just that they need the discipline which I am currently lacking) -

Pranayam - Pranayam are some breathing yogas which strengthen lungs. They therefore help in reducing coughing and sneezing and keeping your nose clean and clear. I have learnt some of them from the Indian saint Baba Ramdev's shows on TV channel Aastha. A simple Google search will land you to those videos teaching how to do them.

Kunjal Kriya - My husband has been insisting that I perform Kunjal Kriya. In this you are supposed to drink like 2 - 2.5 litres of warm salted water in one go and then forcing yourself to vomit to bring it all out. He says that this vomit of water then brings out all impurities from the stomach and also will help me clean up my cough completely. I agree with him - I have tried it twice and it has helped me a lot. It does need a lot of strength though and I have to relax for some time after I have done this. It is not recommended to be done on a daily basis.

Jal Neti - My brother has been insisting that I perform Jal Neti. This is the yoga in which you take in water from one nostril and take it out from the other nostril. You need a tool to do which my husband can use perfectly to perform the act, however I have miserably failed to get the water out of the other nostril. It needs a lot of practice, and my attempts so far have failed. This will further help to ensure that the passage in my nose is clean and therefore any allergens would not be able to titillate my senses to cause sneezing.

Being a person who prefers natural remedies over allopathic medicines, I intend to religiously start trying the above three yogic remedies. They do not have any side effects (though I urge anybody reading this and attempting to first make sure that they have understood the process from a professional) and can cure multiple ailments.Yoga is a powerful tool which we hardly use to cure ourselves of all ailments. And not just curing physical ailments, but the discipline, patience, calmness and energy that it instills also helps in keeping our mind sound and serene.

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