Old Man Winter is fast approaching, which means that Jack Frost is not far behind him; this is the time to pay closer attention to your body and its needs. During the cold months, our body’s metabolism slows, our systems work at a slower pace, our immune system is working harder to prevent and ward off viruses and other germs, and the lack of vitamin D from the sun plays on our emotional body and mood. In short, we enter hibernation mode. Some may find keeping the body, mind, and spirit healthy during the winter season may be challenging at times. Fear not! There are some easy ways to maintain your health during the colder days ahead of us. Healing and maintaining a healthy chakra system is one way of establishing balance and health.
The chakras are energy centers that are found within our subtle energy field. There are seven major chakras that run from the base of the body to the top of the head. Each chakra has an associated colour. Some describe them as lotus flowers, wheels, or disks. The chakras are always active, in the way that they are constantly scanning and monitoring our surroundings and environment, both physical and emotional. They react and interact with various stimuli within your daily environment (this includes human relations). These interactions have an impact on the chakra system. The chakras can either become blocked and closed due to negative influences and experiences, or by contrast be open, balanced, and healthy when positive energy is surrounding you. The chakras can affect us on all levels: physical, mental, emotional, and esoteric. There are a number of techniques that can be used to keep chakras healthy, including Reiki, meditation techniques, and even the assortment of foods you eat. Food can be used to heal, prevent sickness, and maintain a healthy body and mind; this includes a healthy chakra system.
1st Chakra : Base Chakra or Root Chakra – Grounding
The base chakra is our connection to the earth. It is the grounding force that lets us connect to the earth and the riches that it can provide for us. In this case, the base chakra is associated with survival, family, home, and being able to provide.
Sanskrit Name: Muladhara.
Vedic Name: Svadhistana.
Physical Location: Base of spine, trunk of body.
Spiritual Lesson: Material world lessons, ie: monetary.
Physical Dysfunction: Lower back pain, sciatica, varicose veins, rectal tumors, depression, immune related disorders.
Mental and Emotional Issues: Survival, self-esteem, social order, security, family.
Information Stored inside Root Chakra: Familial beliefs, superstitions, loyalty, instincts, physical pleasure or pain, touch.
Area of Body: Spinal column, kidneys, legs, feet, rectum, immune system.
Base Chakra Foods: Root vegetables (carrots, potatoes, parsnips, radishes, beets, onions, garlic, etc.), protein-rich foods (eggs, meats, beans, tofu, soy products, peanut butter), spices (horseradish, hot paprika, chives, cayenne, pepper).
2nd Chakra: Sacral Chakra – Sexuality/Creativity
The Sacral Chakra is associated with sexuality and creativity. This chakra rules feelings, emotions, moods, fertility, appetite for food and sex.
Sanskrit Name: Swadhisthana.
Vedic Name: Svadhistana.
Color: Orange, red-orange.
Physical Location: Lower abdomen to the navel.
Purposes: Emotional connection.
Spiritual Lesson: Creativity, manifestation, honoring relationships, learning to “let go.”
Physical Dysfunctions: Lower back pain, sciatica, ob/gyn problems, pelvic pain, libido, urinary problems.
Mental and Emotional Issues: Blame, guilt, sex, power, control, creativity, morality.
Information Stored Inside Sacral Chakra: Duality, magnetism, controlling patterns, emotional feelings (joy, anger, fear).
Area of Body: Sexual organs, stomach, upper intestines, liver, gallbladder, kidney, pancreas, adrenal glands, spleen, middle spine.
Sacral Chakra Foods: Sweet fruits (melons, mangos, strawberries, passion fruit, oranges, coconut, etc.), honey, nuts (almonds, walnuts, etc.), spices (cinnamon, vanilla, carob, sweet paprika, sesame seeds, caraway seeds).
3rd Chakra: Solar Plexus- Will/Strength, Ego
The Solar Plexus is associated with our self-esteem, self-love, self-confidence, will and personal strength.
Sanskrit Name: Manipura.
Vedic Name: Manipura.
Physical Location: Solar plexus, navel.
Purposes: Mental understanding of emotional life.
Spiritual Lesson: Acceptance of your place in the life-stream, self-love.
Physical Dysfunctions: Stomach ulcers, intestinal tumors, diabetes, pancreatitis, indigestion, anorexia/bulimia, hepatitis, cirrhosis, adrenal imbalances, arthritis, colon diseases.
Mental and Emotional Issues: Self-esteem, fear of rejection, oversensitivity to criticism, self-image fears, fears of our secrets being found out, indecisiveness.
Information Stored Inside Solar Plexus Chakra: Personal power, personality, consciousness of self within the universe (sense of belonging), knowing.
Area of Body: Upper abdomen, umbilicus to rib cage, liver, gallbladder, middle spine, spleen, kidney, adrenals, small intestines, stomach.
Solar Plexus Foods: Granola and grains (pastas, breads, cereal, rice, flax seed, sunflower seeds), dairy (milk, cheeses, yogurt), spices (ginger, mints (peppermint, spearmint, etc.), melissa, chamomile, turmeric, cumin, fennel).
4th Chakra: Heart Chakra – Love
The Heart Chakra deals with and is associated with all matters of the heart. It deals with love and the ability to relate with others, respect, compassion, devotion, selflessness.
Sanskrit Name: Anahata.
Vedic Name: Anahata.
Colors: Green, pink.
Physical Location: Center of chest.
Purposes: Emotional empowerment.
Spiritual Lesson: Forgiveness, unconditional love, letting go, trust, compassion.
Physical Dysfunctions: Heart conditions, asthma, lung & breast cancers, thoracic spine, pneumonia, upper back, shoulder problems.
Mental and Emotional Issues: Love, compassion, confidence, inspiration, hope, despair, hate, envy, fear, jealousy, anger, generosity.
Information Stored Inside Heart Chakra: Connections or “heart strings” to those whom we love.
Area of Body Governed: Heart, circulatory system, blood, lungs, rib cage, diaphragm, thymus, breasts, esophagus, shoulders, arms, hands.
Heart Chakra Foods: Leafy vegetables (spinach, kale, dandelion greens, etc.), air vegetables (broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage, celery, squash, etc.), liquids (green teas), spices (basil, sage, thyme, cilantro, parsley).
5th Chakra: Throat Chakra – Speaking your Truth/Communication and Language
The throat chakra is associated with communication, the ability to speak affectively and clearly, but most importantly has to deal using your Voice to speak your Personal Truth.
Sanskrit Name: Vishudhi.
Vedic Name: Vishuddha.
Color: Sky blue.
Physical Location: Throat, neck region.
Purposes: Speaking your Truth, truthful communication.
Spiritual Lesson: confession, surrender personal will over to divine will, faith, and truthfulness over deceit.
Physical Dysfunctions: Sore throat, mouth ulcers, scoliosis, swollen glands, thyroid dysfunctions, laryngitis, voice problems, gum or tooth problems, TMJ.
Mental and Emotional Issues: Personal expression, creativity, addiction, criticism, faith, decision making (choices), will, lack of authority.
Information Stored Inside Throat Chakra: Self-knowledge, truth, attitudes, hearing, taste, smell.
Area of Body Governed: Throat, thyroid, trachea, neck vertebrae, mouth, teeth, gums, esophagus, parathyroid, hypothalamus.
Throat Chakra Foods: Liquids in general (water, fruit juices, herbal teas), tart or tangy fruits (lemons, limes, grapefruit, kiwi, oranges), other tree growing fruits (apples, pears, plums, peaches, apricots, etc.), spices (salt, lemon grass).
6th Chakra: Third Eye – Intuition
The third eye is associated with intuition. It is the “seeing eye” of subtle energies, deals with clairvoyance, psychic abilities; also it is the avenue to wisdom.
Sanskrit Name: Ajna
Vedic Name: Ajna
Physical Location: Center of the forehead, in between the eyes.
Purposes: Action of ideas, insight, mind development.
Spiritual Lesson: Understanding, reality check point, detachment, open mind.
Physical Dysfunctions: Brain tumors, strokes, blindness, deafness, seizures, learning disabilities, spinal dysfunctions, panic, and depression.
Mental and Emotional Issues: Fear of truth, discipline, judgement, evaluation, emotional intelligence, concept of reality, confusion.
Information Stored inside Sacral Chakra: Seeing clear picture (symbolic or literal), wisdom, intuition, mental facilities, intellect.
Area of Body Governed: Brain, neurological system, eyes, ears, nose, pituitary, pineal glands.
Third-Eye Foods: Dark bluish colored fruits (blueberries, red grapes, black berries, raspberries, etc.), liquids (red wines and grape juice), spices (lavender, poppy seed, mugwort).
7th Chakra: Crown Chakra – Interconnectedness with Self and Heaven
The Crown Chakra is associated with God and the Universe. It is our direct link to God Source.
Sanskrit Name: Sahasrara.
Vedic Name: Sahasrara
Color: Violet, white.
Physical Location: Top of head.
Purposes: Intuitive knowing, connection to one’s spirituality, integration of the whole.
Spiritual Lesson: Spirituality, living in the NOW.
Physical Dysfunctions: Mystical depression, diseases of the muscular system, skeletal system and the skin, chronic exhaustion not associated with physical ailments, sensitivity to light, sound, and environment.
Mental and Emotional Issues: Discovery of the divine, lack of purpose, loss of meaning or identity, trust, selflessness, humanitarianism, ability to see the bigger picture in the life stream, devotion, inspiration, values, ethics.
Information Stored Inside Crown Chakra: Duality, magnetism, controlling patterns, emotional feelings (joy, anger, fear).
Area of Body Governed: Top center of the head, midline above the ears.
Crown Chakra Foods: Since the Crown Chakra is directly correlated with God/Universe there is no food that could be used, but these techniques may be practiced instead:
Fasting/detoxing, incense and smudging herbs (sage, copal, myrrh, frankincense, and juniper).
(Note: Incense and smudging herbs are not to be eaten but are ritually inhaled through the nostrils or can be smoked through a ceremony pipe for purification purposes.)