Ayurveda teaches us to take a mindful pause in between seasons to reset and renew. It is an invitation to take stock and rid ourselves of thoughts and habits that are not serving our wellness goals. Consider it as a mini-personal mindfulness retreat, one that can be carried out in a matter of days that you can do yourself.
Five Reasons For An Ayurvedic Home Cleanse
- To remove excess energy (doshas) from the previous season – this is very important! When doshas have accumulated at the end of a season, they need an outlet. Otherwise, they can cause discomfort in mind and body. A cleanse is a way to help us find harmony with the natural forces of nature inside and outside of us.
- To flush toxins – also very important! We typically accumulate toxins as well as doshas – from our food sources, water sources, environmental pollutants, personal care products, medications, and whatnot (that’s A LOT of toxins!). A cleanse can help move some of these toxins along so they don’t hang out and cause havoc.
- To recommit to a mindful diet and lifestyle including healthy habits. Who couldn’t use this? By the end of a season, we have usually gotten loose with our routines and lost sight of our wellness goals. A cleanse can help us get back on track.
- To release old cravings. The old season brought its own comfort food and drink. As the new season arrives, it’s time to switch to a new diet that works with the incoming dosha.
- To let go of anything that is not working for you. A cleanse can help us move forward towards our next chapter.
What does an Ayurvedic cleanse entail?
Here are the hallmarks of an Ayurvedic cleanse:
- A gentle, food-based cleanse, mostly plant-based.
- Cooked foods and healthy fats (ghee) help eliminate toxins.
- Gentle, detoxifying self-care to nourish the body.
- A daily detoxifying routine for personal hygiene.
- A pre-cleanse to gradually prepare the body and mind.
- A post-cleanse period to gently end the cleanse.
- Nourishing. No deprivation.
What are the common foods of an Ayurvedic cleanse?
- mung beans (especially good at removing excess Pitta dosha through the GI tract)
- basmati rice (easy to digest) or other whole grains
- seasonal vegetables, greens (for variety)
- seasonal fruits (for snacks in between meals)
- ghee (feeds our gut microbes and helps soften the tissues of the GI tract and remove stuck toxins)
I add Golden Milk because it’s a delicious way to start the day. This includes turmeric which Ayurvedic herbal medicine uses as a way to tame the heat of Pitta, which is an interesting trait of turmeric because it is warming. It’s also great for feeding the healthy microbes in our gut.
For the Fall, another option would be an Ashwagandha Latte.
During a cleanse, one eats just these simple foods, observes a simple daily routine, and does detoxing self-care including abhyanga (self-massage), gandusha (oil pulling), and neti (nasal rinse).
There are also optional herbal teas for a more detoxifying effect.
What can’t you eat during an Ayurvedic cleanse?
Of course, this is all optional. A cleanse is not about punishment, remember? However, you might use a home cleanse as a catalyst to release some habits or foods that don’t serve you.
During a cleanse you might choose to:
- Abstain from caffeine (habitual drinkers should switch to something with a little caffeine so they don’t get withdrawal headaches, like green tea)
- Abstain from alcohol
- Abstain from any allergenic foods (to use as an elimination diet)
- Abstain from processed foods
- Abstain from dairy or meat (with the exception of ghee and milk – or find a substitute)
- Avoid eating out
Remember, there’s no right or wrong. You can create your own personal intention.
An Ayurvedic Home Cleanse Is Not Pancha Karma
To be clear, this is not Pancha Karma! Pancha Karma is a much more intense detoxification program that requires much more commitment. You should be under the care of a CAP (Certified Ayurvedic Practitioner) or AD (Ayurvedic Doctor) or Vaidya (Indian Doctor).
Download Her Well Being’s Free Ayurvedic Home Cleanse Guide
Personally, I’ve been doing this seasonal practice for years and can attest to how refreshed I feel every time I do it. My clients swear by this system of renewal as well. Try it for yourself!
I highly suggest working with an experienced Ayurvedic Health Counselor or Practitioner especially if it’s your first time.
Want to try this seasonal renewal ritual for yourself?
In my Ayurvedic Home Cleanse Guide you’ll get:
- Links to Ayurvedic cleansing foods and self-care supplies
- Ayurvedic cleansing resources
- Sample 1-3 day home cleanse
- Cleanse Planner & Journal
- Next Steps
Sign up for my free Ayurvedic Home Cleanse Guide.
Get Ayurvedic Products with Wellevate
Shop my virtual dispensary on Wellevate to get your favorite Ayurvedic products at a discount and free shipping for orders over $49. If you’re not sure which products are right for you, you can sign up for a consultation with me on my booking page.
Join Her Well Being’s Group Cleanse
You can also try a group cleanse if doing one on your own seems intimidating, especially if it’s your first time. There are lots of benefits of doing this with practitioner and peer support.
Best wishes for a mindful beginning to your next chapter.
Heather R. Burkart
Certified Ayurvedic Practitioner
Founder, Her Well Being Ayurveda & Yoga
Please be advised that the content on this website is for education and information purposes only and does not replace advice from a medical professional.
Purchases made with the above Banyan Botanicals affiliate links provide Her Well Being with a small commission provided at no additional charge to the customer. Thanks for your support!