Meet Jane Eastwood. I met her for the first time couple of years ago when she came to Ayurveda Pura Academy for Shirodhara training. And ever since then Jane has completed all Ayurvedic Courses with me. And I am very proud to say that she has now her own practice and integrating Ayurveda very well into her practice and her life. Here is all about Jane
How did you come across Ayurveda?
I had been working as a clinical massage therapist and practising yoga for a number of years when, in 2014, I took a yoga teacher training foundation course with a view to enhancing my work by exploring the mind/body connection. While reading and researching on this course I became aware of Ayurveda as another of the Vedic sciences and it all started from there.
How long have you been practising this science?
Since I became aware of Ayurveda I’ve tried to incorporate various aspects into my life but I would say I’ve been committed to it as a way of life for the last three years.
What does Ayurveda mean to you?
This is not an easy question to answer. My knowledge of Ayurveda means I view the world in a different way to how I did, say, ten years ago. This comes from the understanding that the individual and their environment (physical, mental, spiritual, geographical…) are inextricably linked and that one inevitably impacts the other. On a personal level Ayurveda has shed light on my purpose, it challenges me intellectually and instills the self-discipline necessary for personal development. Last but not least, it has given me the opportunity to fulfill myself by helping others through a career that I love.
How has Ayurveda helped you?
Ayurveda has helped with many aspects of my life. It has given me the knowledge to protect and improve my overall health; I am now quite adept at recognising when things are out of balance in my body and mind and know the steps to take to address those changes. On a spiritual level, it has given me an understanding of how I can lead a better and more meaningful life.
What has been your a-ha moment in Ayurveda?
I think discovering my Kapha/Pitta Prakriti through an accurate pulse diagnosis [by Dr Deepe Apte] has to be one of the most enlightening moments. I began to understand myself better, accept and even value aspects of myself that I had spent many years trying to change or avoid. It also allowed me to understand the importance of Vikriti and the profound effect Doshic changes can have on the mind and body.
Do your family follow Ayurveda?
I have a 12 year old daughter who has been aware of Ayurveda since the age of eight so it has been very much part of her upbringing. She understands Prakriti, Vikriti and the Doshas and is interested in Jyotish (the Vedic science concerned with Astrology). I use diet and herbs with her to address any imbalances that occur and she uses yoga and sound meditation for support during stressful times.
What’s your favourite Ayurvedic recipe or ingredient?
I love the grounding and nourishing qualities of a sweet potato dahl, particularly as we’re coming into Vata season right now.
O Heat some ghee in a pan and add ¼ teaspoon each of ground coriander, ground cinnamon, ground turmeric, ground cumin, ground fenugreek seeds and ground cloves.
O After a minute or so, add a chopped onion and cook until soft.
O Add some fresh grated ginger and a little fresh red chilli to the pan and stir all the ingredients together for about a minute.
O Pour in around 200ml of coconut milk (from a can rather than a carton) and 500ml of water. You can add a star anise to the pot if you have some (optional). Bring to the boil.
O Add 100g of red lentils and a large sweet potato cut into 2cm dice. Season with salt, cover and cook for around 20 minutes until the lentils are cooked and the sweet potato is soft. I like to mash some of the sweet potato a little to spread the flavour throughout the dish. If necessary, add more water to maintain the soupy dahl consistency.
O Finally add a large handful of spinach and the juice of one lime. Cook until the spinach wilts then serve straightaway.
Please tell us more about your Ayurvedic practice.
My practice is based in Chichester, West Sussex. I run my clinic from a holistic therapy centre (Your Therapy Space, Chichester) where I offer Ayurvedic consultations and a range of authentic Ayurvedic therapies. I use the classical Ayurvedic approach of tailored diet, herbs, massage therapies, yoga and lifestyle suggestions to help clients address any illnesses or imbalances and work towards optimal health.
What are your plans in regard to Ayurveda?
Right now I’m enjoying introducing people to Ayurveda, helping them make informed decisions about how to restore or maintain good health and supporting them in that process. I’m looking into the possibility of organising some Ayurvedic retreats where people can come and experience Ayurveda for a few days to see how they can implement it into their daily lives back home. I’m a great believer in taking opportunities as they come along so who knows what might happen in the future!
What aspect of our society would you say could benefit from Ayurveda the most?
We are living in a world where we can overcome many diseases such as cancer, HIV/AIDS and influenza which have killed millions. Yet, at the same time, in the developed world we are less healthy than ever. We eat processed and fast food, exercise incorrectly, live in a 24 hour culture and have irregular routines. This results in conditions such as stress, anxiety, type 2 diabetes and obesity which are not only shortening our lives but also reducing our capacity to enjoy our lives. I see many people who have lost confidence in their ability to manage their own health. I believe that if we can spread the knowledge of Ayurveda and help people make simple changes to their lives, we could look forward to a society where people can live healthily and happily into old age.
Jane Eastwood Ayurveda
14 Cawley Road
Chichester, West Sussex
PO19 1UZ, UK