The ancient Vedic wellness science affirms that beauty is but the extension of good health. Healthy hair and skin are nothing but a reflection of a balanced body. It reiterates that everything in this living universe is interrelated and the secret to being beautiful is when one is in perfect balance with everything else in this biome.
In India, we have always followed standard practices to take care of our bodies, internally and externally. These practices are often woven together with traditions, such as the Haldi ceremony in Indian weddings. Haldi de-tans the skin, removing excess inflammation and dirt. However, our culture is rich with information on everyday practices that can boost our hair health and give us long-term luscious, long and soft hair. Radhika Iyer Talati, Founder of Raa Foundation & Anahata Organics, Yogini, and Mountaineer shares some healthy practices that can improve your hair health.
Massage your scalp with oil
We have all grown up getting ‘champis’ from our mothers and grandmothers. Oiling your hair with a gentle massage not only hydrates the scalp, it provides necessary nutrition to your hair and stimulates blood circulation. With increased blood circulation in the scalp, hair grows thicker and stronger. Before every hair wash, apply oil to your hair and leave in for at least 10 minutes.
Drink cinnamon water with lime every morning
Cinnamon is an ingredient that has amazing benefits for your gut health. Modern research is proving just how important the gut is when it comes to our overall health, terming it ‘the second brain’. Drinking hot water with cinnamon and lime in the morning helps develop more healthy and helpful bacteria in the gut, the effects of which are visible in glow skin and shiny hair. Do this consistently for at least 21 days and you will see undeniable results.
Wash your scalp once a week
We all wash our hair, but we often neglect our scalp. Not cleansing your scalp is the main reason you may develop itchiness, infections or dandruff. When you start cleansing your scalp once a week, your head will feel cooler and have significantly less grime. A dirt and pollution free scalp makes way for better quality hair. After all, it all starts with how well we maintain our roots.
Practice yoga asanas for hair health
Yoga asanas are very scientific in their approach. They stimulate certain systems in our body to increase or decrease hormonal levels in the intended areas. This makes them highly affective for solving health related issues. Some yoga asanas that boost hair health by reducing stress (which is a leading cause for hairball) and increasing blood circulation in the scalp. These asanas are:
Balasana (Child’s pose)- extremely helpful in reducing stress levels.
Vajrasana (Thunderbolt pose)- helpful in stimulating healthy gut bacteria.
Matsyasana (Fish pose)- popularly known for aiding strong and healthy hair growth.
Adho Mukha Svanasana (Downward facing pose)- sends fresh blood and oxygen supply to the scalp.
Practice these asanas at least 4 times a week.
Incorporate natural ingredients good for hair in your diet and your products
The more harsh substances we expose our hair and skin to, the more we strip away natural layers and good microorganisms. Natural ingredients are gentle and highly effective when used in the correct manner. This is reflected in how well our ancestors were able to maintain their hair. In fact, most of us have heard about the thick and luscious hair our grandparents and parents had growing up.It was a sum of the daily practices mentioned above and using pure ingredients. Organic products are nourishing and they put us in a calmer state of mind (due to the natural scents) that allow for more holistic health. Organic food changes the functioning of our bodies, making us feel lighter and more energised at the same time.
Some ingredients great for hair health are: flaxseed, kidney beans, cinnamon, methi, ghee and chia seeds.
The small habits you do everyday make you up to be the person you are. The same goes for how you look and feel. India’s ancient wisdom operates with one main ideology in mind: that everything is interconnected and being healthy inherently means being healthy as a whole (holistic health), in body, mind and spirit.