Archive for the ‘Ayurveda’ Category

Workshop on Wellness

 by the WOW2011 Team

Art of Living is organizing a unique Wellness Workshop on April 17th, 2011 in New Jersey. This workshop will bring together key speakers from ancient and modern sciences. The aim of the workshop is to increase public awareness about options available in pursuit of health and wellness. We are expecting an audience of around 1200-1500 people at this event. The topics will range from our core offerings, yoga, meditation and the Know Your Child workshop to talks on Ayurveda, Vastu Sashtra, Vedic Astrology, Diabetes, nutrition, healthy eating with a plant-based diet, organic farming, Vedic Mathematics etc.

As we all know, creating a health care infrastructure and having access to it is not enough to create a healthy and happy society. This workshop tries to fill this gap by looking at health and wellness in a holistic manner. To attain a perfect state of health one has to be not only physically fit but also mentally calm, steady and emotionally fit. To attain a perfect state of health and wellness we need to create harmonious individuals, families and communities. We need to create an environment around us which promotes good health, peace and prosperity. We need to cultivate both curative and preventative measures towards optimal physical, mental and spiritual well-being. This is not an easy state to attain in today’s fast paced world. Some well-known branches of ancient science and modern technology can come to the rescue. Please visit at WOW2011 website: for more details on the event.

Many organizations and individuals are coming forward to support this event as sponsors/ partner organizations. Some of them include: prestigious NAMA (National Ayurvedic Medical Association-, North East Organic Farming Association of New Jersey (, Vegetarian and Vegan society of New Jersey etc.

There is lot of momentum building up for this event. Please share ideas/ suggestions/ contacts by writing to Also please contact the WOW2011 Team if you would like to volunteer for this exciting project. Currently, there is a huge discount available for the WOW2011 ticket. Register for the event at: Register for WOW2011. Please write to us with your suggestions and feedback.


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Eating for Enlightenment

A culinary experience for complete wellness!
by Somya Ramrakhyani

Cooking class in Denville, New Jersey

“We are what we eat!” From a 7 pound baby at birth to a 130 pound adult, our body is built on our diet. Food is a direct transmitter of energy and affects our physical, mental and emotional state. One of the most enjoyable experiences in life, food can also be a significant contributor to our wellness.

To understand how food affects our mental and physical well-being, we recently hosted Eating for Enlightenment, a two and half hour cooking class based on the principles of Ayurveda.

the food!

Ayurveda is an ancient Indian system of medicine. “Ayu” means life and “Veda” means knowledge. Knowledge of Life is Ayurveda. Ayurveda has three main focuses: healing, prevention and health care. Ayurveda categorizes food in to three categories: Satvic, Rajasic and Tamasic. Each category of food has a different effect on the body and the mind.

In the cooking class, the participants learned about the basics of Ayurveda and how to apply them to cooking in everyday life. They learned to use grains, vegetables, fruits, spices and herbs for healthy digestion and elimination of toxins. They also experienced the relationship between the food we consume and the effects on the state of mind and body.

The instructor, Divya Kanchibhotla, shared delicious and healthy vegetarian recipes and valuable tips about eating to keep mind and body healthy. In her warm and informal style, she made the class an educational, enjoyable and a very delicious experience

the instructor, Divya Kanchibhotla

A scientist by profession, Divya is a meditation and yoga instructor with the Art of Living Foundation and travels nationally teaching yoga and meditation. Her interest in Ayurveda sparks from her passion for holistic living and exploring the connection between our breath, food habits, body and mind. A self taught student of Ayurveda, she has planned menus for many residential meditation retreats with 20-40 members over the last 4 years.

Here are some experiences from recent classes held in New Jersey!

“Awesome! I loved the informality, the warmth and the tons of great information. I learnt about foods that are healing for dosha imbalances. I never used hing or curry leaves before. I would recommend more classes like this. The khichdi was incredible. I could eat it all day long.”

“I really enjoyed the workshop and the company of the people who were there. The information was very clear and concise and I had a number of questions that were answered. Would definitely recommend and further study of ayurvedic principles.”

“Wonderful! I learnt about the compatibility of the foods we eat, why the time you eat each meal and the order in which you eat it is so important. I learned more about the powerful properties of spices and herbs and the way they can neutralize or alter foods that may typically be aggravating to you dosha. Everyone’s questions were great and I feel I am leaving with information I need to pursue ayurveda further”

“I felt very welcomed and comfortable. It was a good opportunity to relax and reflect upon living my best possible life.”

I believe that this class is a must for anyone looking to take care of their and their family’s health! And learn some delicious cooking. Be a part of this enlightening workshop and surely you will have some food for thought! To host a class in your area, please contact Somya Ramrakhyani @

Here is the small piece about our classes. …


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by Revathi Raghavan

Carrot, Sprout, Pomegranate salad

Some of us celebrated Diwali (the Indian festival of lights) this past weekend. It is usually a time when family and friends greet each other and get together over delicious traditional meals, sweets and savories (forming a big part of it) and juicy conversations. It is the festive season overall with Thanksgiving and Christmas also just around the corner. Hope you have a great year and may your life be filled with happiness, peace, and good health!

Speaking of good health, it is said that “We are what we eat” or in Hindi “Jaise ann vaise mann”. That is, the state of our mind depends on the food we eat. Food is one of the four sources of energy and we are well aware of that. The quantity, quality and type of food can affect our mind and therefore outlook. If we eat too much we tend to feel heavy and sleepy or if we eat very little or at improper meal times we become cranky campers. So, the right amount and type of food is important to our health and well-being. Foods that are light, fresh, healthy, and energy-giving include fresh vegetables, fruits, nuts, milk and fresh yogurt (also known as “Sattvic” foods). Foods that are spicy, deep fried and oily are known as “Rajasic” foods and said to increase desires and restlessness. Stale, frozen foods, alcohol, and heavy meats form “Tamasic” foods that cause dullness and inertia. We will save that discussion for another day, especially since some of us have indulged in delicious goodies during the festivities and I do not want to be caught guilty of making you feel guilty!

After all the gorging, or even otherwise if you are simply longing for something light, this salad is for you – a refreshing and appetizing salad combining sweet carrots, crunchy sprouts and beautiful ruby red arils of pomegranates. The carrots are rich in Vitamin A (eat your carrots and your eyes will be good, did mom ever say that to you?) sprouts in protein and pomegranates are excellent for blood circulation and skin (ears perked up, ladies?) amongst other benefits.
Without further ado, here it is:

Ingredients for the salad

Carrots – 2-3, grated
Whole moong sprouts – half a cup
Pomegranate arils – 3 Tbsp
Black pepper crushed – 1/2 tsp
Olive oil – to drizzle
Lemon/Lime juice – 1 tbsp
Salt – to taste
Cilantro leaves, chopped – 1 Tbsp
Wash, trim ends of carrots, peel, and grate into a bowl. Toss in the sprouts (see note below on how to make sprouts) along with the pomegranate arils into the bowl with carrots.
Crush black pepper and squeeze lime/lemon over this and add salt to taste.Drizzle some Olive oil on top. (alternatively you could make a dressing of olive oil, lime juice, salt and crushed pepper) Mix lightly and garnish with chopped cilantro.
*To Indianize a bit, do a seasoning of spluttered mustard seeds and asafoetida in olive oil and add to the salad.
*You could also make a salad of just split yellow moong lentils (half a cup soaked for an hour) and carrots. Garnish with some coconut and cilantro.
*Substitute dates or raisins for pomegranate.
*Grate some ginger in for a slightly different yet delicious taste.

Enjoy this salad by itself or as an accompaniment to soup, rice/rotis or pasta.

Sprouts: They are ready and available packaged in regular grocery stores and Indian grocery stores. If you would like to make your own, follow this easy method. Place whole green moong beans or lentils in a bowl and cover with enough water and leave overnight. The next morning drain the water and place the soaked moong beans in a colander and leave in a warm spot. The next day you will see cute tiny little tails popping from the moong beans. Your sprouts are ready!

Try this salad and your stomach with thank you with all its heart for going light and easy on it. 🙂


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