Ayurveda holds basil in high regard, stating that it opens the heart and mind, offering the energy of deep devotional love. Also stock up your pantry with these ancient wonders:
--When in doubt, add ginger. Ginger is used in Ayurveda to treat gas, heartburn, nausea, indigestion, and even mild food poisoning. Used fresh, it is tri-doshic, meaning that it can help balance the imbalance of anyone.
--Turmeric is my all-time favorite spice "medicine." One of Ayurveda’s universal remedies, it is great for kapha issues such as excess mucous or heaviness in the body. It also has a special prabdha (superpower) in relation to its ability to promote good digestion.
--Coriander is believed to balance pitta (“fire”), remedy inflammation, and improve digestion.
--Rose is one of the best "spices" for working with intense emotions and hormonal mood swings. It goes well in milk.
--Cumin ("digester" in Sanskrit) is a mainstay of the Ayurvedic kitchen.
--The ancients used cardamom to clean their teeth and sweeten the breath.
Katie Silcox is the author of "Healthy, Happy, Sexy - Ayurveda Wisdom for Modern Women." She's a vinyasa yoga teacher, Ayurvedic practitioner, contributor to Yoga Journal, and a senior teacher within the Sri-Vidya ParaYoga lineage under Yogarupa Rod Stryker.