AYURVEDIC FOOT CARE
More than 70% of all people in the United States will have painful foot problems at some time during their lifetime. Do you take care of your feet as much as you use them? An ayurvedic foot care routine can reduce your chances of belonging to the unfortunate 70%.
BASIC FOOT CARE
The best measure you can take is to wear comfortable shoes that fit properly, with extra room in the toe area. Equally important is to wash your feet daily with soap. Rinse off the soap with lukewarm water and dry your feet thoroughly, including between the toes. Always keep your nails short but donšt cut into skin on the sides of your nails. Donšt apply harsh techniques to remove corns and calluses such as trimming or shaving because they can damage your feet. Change your socks every day and when you exercise. Whenever possible, air your feet by walking barefoot outside, or in the house. These simple rules not only increase your comfort level but can prevent infections, calluses and many other ailments of the foot.
AYURVEDIC FOOT CARE
"Caring for your feet in Maharishi Ayurveda goes beyond the cosmetic purposes: it benefits the whole body and nervous system," says Vaidya Nitin Agrawal of Maharishi Ayurveda Products International. An ayurvedic foot bath and foot massage relaxes the whole physiology and provides a feeling of revitalization, increased energy, and improved circulation.
Herbal Foot Bath
For tired feet and hard skin, a foot soak can do wonders. Warm water stimulates your feet and your whole body, and softens your skin. The aromas of herbs and baths salts provide relaxation through the sense of smell.
Boil 1 quart of water. Make a small pouch of any of the following herbs: lavender, sage, rosemary. Place the pouch in a large wash bowl or bucket and pour the boiling water over it.
Let it sit for 20 minutes.
Add cold water, if necessary, to reach a comfortable temperature between 100 and 110 degrees Fahrenheit.
Soak your feet in the water for about 20 minutes. Gently rub the herbs on your feet but do not scrub.
Dry feet thoroughly with a clean towel.
Bathing salts also soften your skin. Try one of Maharishi Ayurveda Aromatherapy Bath Salts for an even more pleasant experience.
By rubbing your feet, you massage your whole body. "Massaging your feet helps detoxification, balances emotions, and improves blood and lymph circulation," says Vaidya Agrawal.
1. First wash your feet thoroughly with soap and warm water. Neem soap is especially beneficial due to its antibacterial properties. Wipe your feet dry and sit in a comfortable position so you can easily reach your feet.
2. Apply oil to one of your feet for lubrication.
3. Start by gently rubbing the base of your little (5th) toe.
4. Continue at the base of the next (4th) toe.
5. Next, apply slight pressure between the 5th and 4th toes.
6. Then, rub between the 3rd and 4th toes.
7. Next, massage, stretch and pull the big toe gently and rub each side of the nails.
8. Then massage the ball of your foot in a circular motion. Apply gentle pressure on both sides of your heels below the ankle joints, followed by circling around your ankle joint with both hands in a clockwise motion. This improves circulation and the energy level of the body.
9. Finally massage your calf muscle to release tension. Repeat the same steps on your other foot.
Treatment for Corns
Corns, like calluses, develop from an accumulation of dead skin cells, forming thick and hard areas on the tops, sides and tips of the toes. Constant pressure and friction from footwear can press these areas and cause pain. Instead of chemical corn-removing solutions, which can increase irritation, try the following simple remedy from Vaidya Agrawal.
1. Roast one garlic clove (dry or in a little ghee) until golden but not burnt.
2. While still warm, apply garlic clove on the corn and place a band-aid over it. Use one clove of garlic for each corn. Leave it on for a day.
3. Apply daily until corn falls off.
4. Massage feet with Rejuvenation Massage oil to soften skin and prevent the recurrence of corns.
Preventing Foot Odor
Smelly feet can result from perspiration, dead skin cells and bacteria. Synthetic shoes and socks increase the problem by not letting your feet breathe. The following recipe naturally deodorizes your feet.
1. Perform the herbal foot bath according to the instructions above but add 1/2 -1 teaspoon of salt to the water.
2. Mix 1 part corn starch, 3 parts M.Spa Herbalized Clay, and 3-4 drops of peppermint essential oil.
3. Make a paste by adding cold water to a small amount of the above mix. Apply paste on your feet for 20-30 minutes.
4. Wash paste off with lukewarm water and dry thoroughly.
Do this procedure every day for a month or until problem disappears, then twice a week. You can also sprinkle the powder mix in your shoes or socks during the day.
As in every area of Ayurveda, the emphasis is on prevention in foot care as well. By giving your feet a break, they will serve you better and help you stay free from discomfort.
Note: The sole purpose of this article is to impart education on Ayurveda, and is not intended to diagnose, treat, or otherwise mitigate any disease. If you have a disease, please contact your physician.
Written by: Eco Shop
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