Lesson 2

Menopause by Design

What makes the Ayurvedic approach to menopause different?

An introduction to key concepts so you understand why the recommendations work so well.

 

Actions Steps

 

Include short decompression rituals throughout your day

Make a list of activities that help you shift out of stress and into “Rest & Digest” mode. Within this, create 3 categories:

    1. 1 minute – quick breather
    2. 10 minute – decompression ritual
    3. 1 hour or more – deep dives for depositing energy into your energy bank

Every day: Use the 1 min & 10 min practices

Every week: Do one deep dive longer practice

Examples of activities that might help you shift from action mode, to rest & digest mode:

    • rub oil on your feet or head
    • meditation
    • do a yoga stretch
    • go for a walk
    • follow a tai chi or qi gong video
    • give (and receive!) a cuddle
    • take a bath
    • work on an art project or craft
    • do alternate nostril breathing
    • lie with your legs up the wall
    • have sex
    • do yin yoga
    • exercise to the point you clear your mind from stress
    • smell an essential oil
    • do puzzle or wordgame
    • hit or shout into a pillow
    • hold a marma pressure point on the head, face, feet, hands
    • do a tapping sequence
    • do a set of 30 squats
    • put on your favorite song & have a dance party
Read about increasing Ojas

Ojas: The refined nutritive essence

Basics about Ojas

  • Ojas is the most refined nutrient essence in the body
  • It is the essence of all the body’s tissues
  • It is a fluid
  • it is responsible for health, vigor, energy in body & mind
  • It gives you your vitality, bodily strength, an immunity
  • It does not get easily vitiated – its normal physiology only gets disturbed with long exposure to factors escalating disease progression
  • So, if it is disturbed, it is a priority

Qualities of Ojas

  • oily
  • steadying
  • heavy
  • soft, cool, calm,
  • clear whitish yellow, color of ghee, luminescent (plus a little reddish)
  • moving and liquid in nature
  • gives bright lustre
  • sweet to taste
  • gives strength
  • clearing
  • relaxing

Locations

  • Primary location: the heart (8 drops). The ojas that resides in the heart controls and nourishes the mind. You must understand: in Ayurveda the heart is the seat of the mind. The heart is indispensable for healthy mental and physical functions
  • Secondary location: 2 handfuls inseparably infused throughout body

Functions of Ojas

    1. balanced muscular growth
    2. protects the heart
    3. gives immunity & resilience
    4. clarity and peace of mind, satisfaction, ease
    5. mental and physical power to carry out any task without getting defeated by the obstacles
    6. deep commanding voice and glorious skin lustre
    7. proper and utmost efficiency in the sense and action organs
    8. gives good memory
    9. fertility- it forms the most refined cells and embryo

Signs of strong Ojas

  • the functions listed above are strong
  • fertility- formation of most refined cells

Signs of decreased Ojas

  • person is easily stressed, fretting, worried
  • fearful/anxious
  • constant worry
  • highly sensitive in thoughts or sensory organs, even with pain
  • less power in muscles
  • dryness, roughness
  • bad complexion
  • low feeling or depressed
  • emaciation

Stages of depleted Ojas

  1. Ojo visramsa
    1. joint pain and loss of strength in joints
    2. fatigue
    3. increased Vata, Pitta, Kapha
    4. lack of normal physiological functioning
  2. Oja vyapath
    1. stiff & heavy feeling in body
    2. edema, specifically due to increased Vata
    3. skin discoloration
    4. increased degree of fatigue
    5. improper sensory organ function
    6. overly sleepy or excess sleep
  3. Ojo kshaya
    1. loss of consciousness
    2. loss of muscle mass
    3. confusion or delusion
    4. irrelevant excessive speaking
    5. loss of life

The quality of Ojas is affected by body’s ability to produce other healthy tissues:

  • One of the primary ways ojas is formed is from Shukra dhatu, so the quality of Shukra dhatu (semen, ovum and sexual fluids) is a big part of the quality of ojas
  • If Agni (digestion power) is strong, good quality tissues are formed, then good quality & amount of ojas can be formed
  • Rasa dhatu (fluid tissue first formed from digestion incl. lymph) nourishes the whole chain of tissue formation, so its quality will affect ojas
  • Overnouishment of fat tissue (Medas dhatu) will obstruct nutrient flow to other tissues, and finally Ojas
  • Vata –
    • Prana Vata controls respiration, carries prana & oxygen supply. If ojas is depleted, often see clear effect on respiration
    • Apana Vata manages excretion. The body’s ability to excrete plays highly into the quality of organ function & good production of ojas
  • Mamsa dhatu – muscle. Good quality muscle helps control and nourish the fat tissue. Regular exercise helps ojas. Overdoing it depletes ojas.
What to do if your Ojas is depleted

Menopause Manifesto

I stand for radical menopause relief. I believe it is every woman’s right to come into her own as she ages. To me this means:

  • cultivating her wisdom,
  • feeling great in her body,
  • knowing her strengths,
  • composting her history
  • embracing her beautiful, imperfect self
  • integrating her shadows,
  • contributing to change the world around her,
  • being sensual beyond expectations,
  • invoking change like never before,
  • feeling incredible in her physical body and confident she’s positioning herself for health in the decades to come,
  • reigniting her creative obsessions and
  • hearing a positive, rather than punishing, inner voice

I am a leader in the menopause revolution, shedding the taboos attached to menopause that increase the doubt and anxiety already activated by our physical changes