I had the absolute pleasure of receiving not one, but two ancient Ayurvedic treatments from Andrea Emmerich. One was abhyanga massage and the other was shirodhara. When I left Andrea’s studio, my muscles were like jello and I was abuzz with calm, positive energy. This was yesterday and I’m anxious to tell the world about it today. Andrea is THAT skilled.
You are an Ayurvedic healthcare practitioner. Could you tell me about your training?
I received my certification as a Clinical Ayurvedic Specialist from the California College of Ayurveda in Grass Valley. After 2 years of academic studies, I did a 1-year clinical internship in practice. During this time we had to write and analyze the pathogenesis of patients and perform consultations consisting of intake, report of findings, treatment plans and follow-up visits. This was the most effective part to build a practice after finishing my studies. We documented everything and worked with an internship supervisor. This was challenging but made us very precise and detailed practitioners in our observations and hence lead to satisfying results in healing. I also completed a panchakarma training with Dr. Vasant Lad at the Ayurvedic Institute in Albuquerque, NM. Further I deepened my knowledge in pulse diagnosis taught by Dr.Lad's protege Vijaya. I continue to educate myself with workshops, literature and participating in the ayurvedic community.
What is panchakarma and why would a person need to do it?
Panchakarma is a mild, yet effective cleanse and rejuvenation program that rids the body of accumulated toxins that are stored in the deeper tissues. Even if we live a healthy lifestyle we are constantly exposed to toxins in the environment around us and from the air, water, food, cosmetics, negative thoughts and emotions. It is one of the pillars of health to seasonally detox on a cellular level to get body. mind and spirit back into homeostasis.
After I complete a panchakarma, I would most likely want to stick with some of the principles of ayurveda. Name five things every Ayurvedic kitchen must have.
Yes, when the body is back in balance it craves the things that maintain that. Balance is very dynamic and we have to take into account the seasons, our age, and physical location. Here are the things you want to always have in your kitchen: organic lemons to make a hot lemon water first thing in the morning to activate the body's detox process; fresh ginger to make ginger tea or water to sip throughout the day. It increases circulation and helps digestion; ghee (clarified butter) is best to cook with. When sauteeing spices in ghee their therapeutic properties that are lipid-soluble get released and make your food medicine. Basmati rice and mung beans are the other must-haves. Mix them with an equal portion of rice and cook a kitchari. Kitchari is often referred to as the chicken soup of India. It is a complete meal that will provide you with the needed nutrients in a perfect combination and it is very easy to digest.
How often should a person do a panchakarma?
Ideally you would do a panchakarma cleanse 2 times a year. The best times are spring and fall, after the big seasonal changes. But one time a year at least.
I loved my shirodhara and abhyanga treatments from you. Please explain it to my readers.
Shirodhara is a very powerful and rejuvenating treatment for the central nervous system. It is a stream of warm herbal oil continuously flowing over the third eye point which makes your mind and thoughts surrender and allows us to feel the deepest level of relaxation and bliss. Abhyanga is a warm herbal oil massage applying long rhythmic strokes aligning the energetic flow within the body. At the same time it mobilizes the toxins from deep within the tissues.
You may direct your questions to Andrea via email: Aemmerich@earthlink.net.
Thank you for reading.