Tag Archives: Balasana

A Bridge to a Relaxation

Whenever you feel tightness in your chest, shoulders and back, practice this variation of a backbend, or bridge pose. It will help release tension in your mid- and upper back as well as stretch and strengthen your hips and legs.

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Step-1. Lie back on a mat with your heels resting on a sturdy chair. Extend your arms alongside your body, palms flat on the floor. Make sure your feet are hip-distance apart and your knees are parallel to each other.

Step-2. On an inhale, press firmly on your feet as you raise your hips toward the ceiling. Interlace your fingers and rotate your upper arms outward so your shoulders can roll under. Keep your arms and hands on the floor while imagining your shoulder blades are moving up and through your chest. This will help open and release tight spots in your upper and middle back and chest area. Hold this position and focus on slow, deep breathing. To come down, release your hands and slowly lower your hips to the floor.

Source : Los Angeles Times

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A Stretch to Open up the Hips and Thighs

This is a great stretch for loosening up the outside of your hips and thighs. It you’re not limber enough to hold your foot, you can hook a strap or a towel around it to help you reach it.
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STEP-1. Lying on your back, bend your right knee into your chest. Keep your left leg extended straight out on the floor in front of you. Straighten your right leg, holding the outer edge of your right food with your left hand or using a strap. Press the thumb of your right hand to the top of your right thigh where it meets your torso.

STEP-2. Without allowing your right hip to roll completely off the floor (as you would in a lying spinal twist), move your right leg across your body to the left side until you feel a gentle stretch running from your outer right hip down the outside of your right thigh. Continue to press the right side of your buttock toward the floor (it’s OK if it lifts a few inches). Pause for three to six full breaths. Lower your leg and repeat on the other side.

Source: Los Angeles Times

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Solanum Xanthocarpum

Botanical Name:Solanum Xanthocarpum
Family: Solanaceae
Genus: Solanum
Species: S. virginianum
Kingdom: Plantae
Order: Solanales

Synonyms: Solanum virginianum
Popular Name: Yellow-Berried Nightshade, Choti Katheri, Kantkari, Kantakari, Kateli
Common Name : Yellow-berried Nightshade
Other Names: Choti Katheri, Kantkari, Kantakari, Kateli

Parts Used: Stems, roots, flowers, fruit

Habitat: Throughout India

Description: It is a very prickly perennial herb somewhat with woody base. Stem branched much and younger ones clothed with dense, stellate and tomentose hairs. Prickles are compressed straight, glabrous and shining, often 1 to 3 cm long. Leaves ovate or elliptic, sinuate or subpinnatifid, obtuse or subacute, stellately hairy on both sides, armed on the midrib and often on the nerves with long yellow sharp prickles. Petiole is long, stellately hairy and prickly. Flowers are in cymes or some times reduced as solitary. Calyx tube is short, globose and lobes linear-lanceolate, acute, densely hairy and prickly. Corolla purple, lobes deltoid, acute, and hairy outside. Anther filament is long, glabrous and anthers open by a pore. Ovary is ovoid and glabrous. Berry yellow, green-blotched and sorrounded by enlarged calyx. Seeds are glabrous.

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Flowers are typically conical or funnel form with five petals, usually fused. The leaves are alternate, often with a hairy or clammy surface.

This plant is  used in Ayurvedic practice. Traditionally used as a carminative, diuretic, expectorant and fever reducer. It is also used to treat asthma. The powdered fruit is mixed with honey to make a cough syrup. Produces beautiful inch long fruits. Not Hardy. Zone

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Cultivation
Propagule  Various Pollination method    Planting style    Crop spacing    Row spacing    Cold frame  Planting period    Harvesting period    Frost tolerance    Heat requirement    Fertilizer  Typical Time to harvest

Special qualities
Tolerates drought  no Tolerates high humidity  no Tolerates seaside conditions  no Insect resistant  no Disease resistant  no Deer resistant  no Best uses    Symbiosis  Attracts butterflies  no Attracts hummingbirds  no Autumn foliage  no Colorful berries  no Desirable qualities    Other interest    Other interest color  Other interest period

Uses:Fruits eaten as an anthelmintic and for indigestion. Root is an expectorant, used in Ayurvedic medicine for cough, asthma and chest pain. Also used for flatulence, sore throat, and toothache. Has high concentration of solasodine, a starting material for the manufacture of cortisone and sex hormones. It cures asthma, cough, bronchspasm, sore throat, constipation, an effective expectorant and diuretic.

Bhavamisra, an ancient physician, mentions it as promoting conception in females. Given with honey, tulsi (Ocimum sanctum), datura (Datura metal), and black pepper it can be effective in cases of bronchial asthma. Stem, flowers and fruits are bitter and carminative and are prescribed for relief in burning sensation in the feet.
Leaves are applied locally to relieve pain.

Medicinal Properties :-
Action

Herb: alterative, anthelmintic, aperient, astringent, bitter, digestive, diuretic,  expectorant, stomachic

Stems, fruits, flowers-bitter, carminative

Root- diuretic, expectorant, febrifuge, anodyne

The whole herb is useful for the treatment of fevers, coughs, asthma, flatulence, dropsy, heart disease, pain the chest and gonorrhea.

The roots from this herb (in the form of decoction of confection) are frequently recommended for coughs, dysuria, stone in the bladder, dropsy, asthma, catarrhal fever, pain in the chest. It is also useful for the enlargement of the liver and spleen.

This herb is one of the dashamul roots (ten roots) in ayurveda. So, it is one of the important herbs in Indian Medicine.

Herbal medicine
Medicinal properties  carminative   expectorant   decongestant Medicinal parts  Leaves   Seeds   Root Has medicinal uses  yes Do not self-administer  yes Do no use if pregnant  no Legally restricted  no Toxicity precautions  Medicinal notes  Solanum xanthocarpum is considered by some to be an herbal remedy. It’s used as a carminative, an expectorant or a decongestant. Kantakari is only to be administered with proper professional knowledge. The leaves together with the seeds and the root are considered to be the valuable parts by the herbalist.

As per Ayurveda:
The plant is bitter, acrid, thermogenic, anthelmintic.
anti-inflammatory, anodyne, digestive, carminative, appetiser, stomach depurative, sudorific, febrifuge, expectorant, laxative, stimulant, dime, rejuvenating, emmenagogue and aphrodisiac.

It is useful in vitiated conditions of velta and kapha, helminthiasis, dental caries, inflammatio arthralgia, flatulence, colic, constipation, dyspepsia, anorexia, leprosy, .skin diseases, hypertension, rheumatoid arthritis, fever, cough, asthma. bronchitis, pharyngitis, hiccough, strangury, urolithiasis, amenorrhoea. dysmenorrhoea, lumbago, haemorrhoids, cardiac disorders, rhinopathy : epilepsy and catarrh.

The root is pungent, bitter, heating; appetiser, laxative, stomachic, anthelmintic; useful in bronchitis, asthma, fever, “vata “, and” kapha”, ozrena, strangury, lumbago, pains, piles, thirst, urinary concretions, and diseases of the heart.-

The fruit is bitter, digestible; improves the appetite;. good in diseases of the heart, pruritus, asthma, fever; anthelmintic, anaphrodisiac; causes biliousness .

The root is an aphrodisiac.

The leaves are a good application for piles.

The fruit has a bitter bad taste; laxative; good in inflammations, chronic bronchitis, asthma, biliousness, fevers, muscular pains, dysuria, stone in the bladder, sterility in women.

The seeds are anthelmintic;’ good for boils, scabies, asthma, and cough

The root is much esteemed as an expectorant, and is used in cough, asthma, catarrhal fever and pain in the chest. Kantikari is used in medicine in various forms, such as decoction, electuary, ghrita, etc.

A decoction of the root is given with the addition of long pepper and honey, in cough and catarrh, and with rock salt and assafretida in spasmodic cough.

The roots beaten up and mixed with wine are given to check vomiting. The juice of berry is also useful in sore throat.

The stems, flowers and fruit are bitter and carminative, and are prescribed in those forms of the burning of the feet , which are attended with a vesicular, watery eruption.

Fumigations with the vapour of the burning seeds of this plant are in high repute in the cure of toothache. It acts as a powerful sialogogue, and by this means probably relief is obtained.
In the Ayurvedic tradition, kantakari leaves are taken to treat gas and constipation, and are made into a gargle for throat and gum disorders. The expectorant, anticongestive seeds may be taken to relieve asthma and to clear bronchial mucus. The root is used to treat snake scorpion bites

Traditional uses
Parts used  Traditional uses  Contemporary uses  Fragrance  Fragrance parts  Fragrance intensity    Fragrance category    Dye parts  Dye color

Adverse factors
Common pests  Poisonous parts  Poisonous indications  Internal poison  no Dermatologic poison  no Livestock poison  no Mechanical injury  no Hay fever pollen    Hay fever season    Adverse qualities

Disclaimer:The information presented herein is intended for educational purposes only. Individual results may vary, and before using any supplements, it is always advisable to consult with your own health care provider.

Resources:
http://www.iloveindia.com/indian-herbs/solanum-xanthocarpum.html
http://www.motherherbs.com/solanum-xanthocarpum.html
http://www.crescentbloom.com/plants/specimen/SO/Solanum%20xanthocarpum.htm
http://www.holisticonline.com/Herbal-Med/_Herbs/h160.htm
http://www.crimson-sage.com/shop/?shop=1&itemid=84
http://www.impgc.com/plantinfo_A.php?id=76&bc=Raw%20Herbs%20»%20Plant

http://www.ayurvedakalamandiram.com/herbs.htm#kanchanara

http://www.herbnet.com/Herb%20Uses_IJK.htm

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Balancing Builds Strength & Flexibility

If you’re familiar with the classic yoga pose called “downward facing dog,” try this variation for more of a challenge. It develops flexibility in your legs while strengthening your core and upper-body muscles.

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Step 1. Begin on your hands and knees, then curl your toes under and lift your hips to straighten your knees, pushing your heels toward the floor. Shift your weight to your left leg and raise your right leg off the floor. Keep your right foot flexed, with your toes and knee pointed down.

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Step 2.  Focus on keeping your shoulders and hips facing the floor as you shift your upper-body weight to your right hand. Slowly raise your left arm off the floor while you use your core muscles to stabilize your shoulders and pelvis. Find your balance and hold for three complete breaths. Slowly lower your arm and leg, then switch sides and repeat the exercise on the other side.

Sources: Los Angeles Times

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Loosen Up Your Back, Hamstrings

This asymmetrical forward bend will stretch each side of your back and your hamstrings (backs of your thighs) separately. You may find that one leg or one side of your back is tighter than the other. Spend extra time stretching the tighter side.
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1. Kneel on a padded surface. Bring your right foot in front of you. Bend your knee slightly and rest your right heel on the floor with your toes pointing up. Hinging at the hips, bend forward and balance on your fingertips. Lengthen your spine by reaching the crown of your head away from your tailbone. Slowly straighten your right knee. Hold this position for 10 to 20 seconds and repeat on the other side or move on to the next pose.

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2. Keeping your lower body in the same position, shift your weight over your left hand. Place your left hand flat on the floor below your left shoulder. Once you feel stable, turn your upper body to the right and raise your right hand directly above your right shoulder. Focus on sliding your shoulder blades down away from your ears. Hold for 10 to 20 seconds, then turning toward the floor, bring your hand down. Repeat on other side.

Sources:Los Angeles Times

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