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What is aroma yoga therapy and why you should try it

Health is not the absence of disease. It is our ability to flourish, to bounce back. It is the energy to chase our dreams and to contribute to the society. Health is a state of complete physical, mental and social well-being.

Going by the definition of health by World Health Organization (WHO), we would realize that most of us are unhealthy. The last global study on depression, India was among the most depressed and in the last study on happiness, India was again among the unhappiest. Now, if we were to think of women in India the situation is far worse. In the last global study by Nielsen on women and stress, Indian women were found to be the most stressed. 87% felt stressed most of the time, and 82% had no time to relax. And this was way before the Covid-19 pandemic. 78% of working women in India suffer from lifestyle diseases that can be addressed with simple mind-body interventions.

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With these insights, there came a need to devise a therapy module that would fit right into the busy schedule of the Indian woman. A method that feels wonderful, thus easily becomes a habit and brings in results physically and mentally.

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Yoga therapy offers a personalized combination of postures, movement, breathing techniques, and mindfulness practices that are proven to create required physiological and psychological changes. The downside of this safe and effective practice is the time commitment. This is where Aroma Yoga Therapy comes to the rescue. Natural essential oils have well-established therapeutic benefits and behaviour-altering benefits (Aromachology). When we combine essential oil with Yoga therapy, enhanced results are achieved in a much shorter duration of time. 

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If I could, I would spend the entire day doing various yoga practices. But most days, I barely eke out 15 to 30 minutes for my practice. In this fast-paced world, Aroma Yoga Therapy helps me relax, stay focused, sleep deep and heal. For instance, two minutes before an important meeting, I roll on a special blend of high-quality essential oils such as peppermint, grapefruit, geranium, vetiver etc and practice slow deep mindful breaths. This immediately enhances my cognitive functions and reduces cortisol (stress). As a result, I find myself calm, composed and most importantly a good listener to what is said and unsaid. I have been blending essential oils since 2010 and assisting people to become resilient to stress, stay happy and motivated and sleep deep.

I work with brands like LinkedIn, Discovery Channel, Indian Navy, Yoga Alliance, Hyatt etc and has clientele across Europe, Middle East and India and is launching into Japan later this year. The method combines yoga, essential oils and behaviour.

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Molecular medical research on aroma therapy has been steadily increasing and clinical research indicates the oils can relieve anxiety, depression and improve one’s mood (Monash University). According to a study at Coventry, mind-body interventions such as yoga and meditation can reverse molecular reactions in our DNA which cause ill-health and depression. “Soon such therapies will become mainstream”, said Dr Anil K R, neurologist trained at Mayo Clinic.

Aroma Yoga Therapy would include personalized 15-minute sequence of stretches targeting large muscles such as thigh and shoulder muscles along with a special blend of essential oils that promote sleep in the evening. Likewise, it would include a combination of quick practices (energizing breath work and movement) and essential oils blend that awakens the senses.

In the morning, essential oils blend that included copaiba, spike lavender, bergamot, bitter orange can be used to ramp up the serotonin production, a powerful mood enhancer. Once combined with a gratitude meditation you would find yourself with sufficient energy to help reclaim happiness and eventually your complete health.

This International Yoga Day, kickstart your yoga practice if you haven’t already, but include a few essential oils to make the most of it.

Nuthan Manohar — Adj Faculty IIM K (Wellbeing), a TEDx Speaker on therapeutic perfumery, Sleep Whisperer, Founder of Me Met Me and Ease Bioessence, is a pioneer in personalized therapeutic perfumery and interventions. 

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