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February 8, 2009

Ask Dr. Ayurveda: Dr. John Douillard. #3: Maintaining Health and Stamina During the Golden Years of Life?

Dear Dr. Ayurveda, via Dr. John Douillard:

Q. I am a physically and mentally active married senior with a wonderful wife and family who cycles daily, eats nutritiously, maintains high school graduation weight (160 lbs/5’10”), has never smoked, keeps stress in check, laughs a lot, reads a lot and generally enjoys life. [We can attest to the truth of the above—check out his video interview. ~ed.] What additional recommendations can you give me and my contemporaries that will help us continue to live happy, healthy, mentally and physically active lives until we are 100? Any specific tips or tricks for maintaining health, stamina, curiosity and zest for life are greatly appreciated.
~ Bud Sorenson, Whole Foods board member

A. The best advice I can give you, Bud? Keep doing what you’re doing, with emphasis on enjoying life! All too often, we finish our days too tired to laugh or love as fully as you are already doing.

Still, you want to extend life and make it even more enjoyable? I would ask not what more you can do, but how you can do nothing—yet accomplish everything. Ayurveda, a deep study of nature, teaches us how to fulfill our personal potential. Consider the sun: while it sits silently in the center of our solar system, it accomplishes everything. Life depends on it, planets spin around it. The bigger the eye of the hurricane, the more powerful the winds. Just so, the more stable our mind is, the more powerful we are.

It is the tendency of our mind to become busied, distracted and constantly thinking. We spend our days maximizing thoughts. This leads to rapid-fire, meaningless activity—using our cell phone while walking, eating when we’re not hungry, fidgeting, pointlessly surfing the internet or vegging out on the couch to the point of depression.

Meditative techniques that calm the mind—“doing nothing”—are the key to living our potential and enjoying our days. Make sure you practice acts of stillness in your quest for a century of bliss!

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