KEEPING THE RESPIRATORY TRACT HEALTHY WITH NASAL WASH
How to keep the lungs in good shape with Spinal Breathing and nasal washing.
The Coronavirus penetrates the body mainly through the respiratory system and mouth.
The respiratory system is part of the immune system. In Daoist medicine the lungs are called, “the ministers of defense” in charge of regulating who enters the kingdom of the body and who stays out.
In the I Ching Dao practices we have several ways of empowering the respiratory system:
The first and most important is through healing the rejection of life by making the conscious decision to be here. Every family in the world has a percentage of rejection of life through a history of abortion, self-rejection, and suicide. To be here on planet earth we need to breathe, rejection of life is one of the root causes of breathing problems.
Second, we have the practice of deep breathing with the Spinal Cord Breathing.
Third we have deep breathing with the Three Cauldron Breath practice.
Fourth we have subtle breathing in the Bone Breathing practice.
Fifth and most powerful, is through the subtle breath generated through the Foundation Sequence and meditative practices.
There is a sixth way of strengthening the respiratory system through the practice of nasal wash, “Jala Neti” as done in the yogas of India.
Nasal wash or Jala Neti, has been used in yoga for its extremely powerful physical, psychological, and spiritual benefits. In the modern world Jala Neti has gained immense popularity because of its powerful health benefits on the respiratory system. It helps clear sinus congestion, prevents the accumulation of microorganisms and virus in the respiratory tract, prevents nasal infections and is useful in allergies to pollens and dust. If done daily, it gives immediate and sustained results.
Our body utilizes mucous to transport out of the body any toxins, dust, or harmful microorganisms that enters through the nose or mouth. Mucous is also used to moisten the nasal passages in very dry environments such as heated interiors in winter or electronically charged settings with lots of computers and TV screens.
Psychic tension accumulates in the mid eyebrow area when the autonomic nervous system in the hypothalamus is affected by emotional or mental factors. Nasal wash is one way of releasing some of this tension.
To do the nasal wash a special pot is used. The pot is often sold in pharmacies or yoga supplies stores.
If you are going to purchase a pot, try to find a large one rather than a small one. To loosen hard mucus or clear dust, pollens, or heavy pollution a lot of water has to pass through the nose. Try to find one in porcelain instead of plastic.
BENEFITS OF NASAL WASH WITH A JALA NETI POT
-Can help clear nasal congestion.
-Can help clear nasal mucus.
-Washes away dust, pollen, and allergens.
-Relieves dry nasal passages.
-Can help the immune system by reducing pathogens in the respiratory tract.
-Can help change the active nostril in case of infections. When an infection begins the breathing gets stuck in one nostril only instead of regularly alternating. The longer the breath is stuck the more acid the blood becomes and the faster the infection spreads. Nasal wash can induce the nostrils to open.
-Can help clear help regulate the acid-alkaline balance of the blood through restoring alternate nostril breathing.
-Can reduces the duration and frequency of colds. People who do daily nasal wash report very few incidences of colds and flu.
-Can help reprogram the body’s natural defense mechanisms against nasal infections such as hay fever, allergies, sore throats, and coughs.
-Can be beneficial for asthma and bronchitis as it reduces the tendency for mouth breathing by freeing the nostrils of mucus.
-Can improve mental clarity by opening the breath.
-Can help reduce mental tension.
-Can help reduce excess pressure in the eyes and head.
-Can help improve sensitivity of the olfactory nerves, restore the sense of smell, and improve the capacity to taste food.
-Has a cooling and soothing effect on the brain by drawing out excessive heat, and can be beneficial for headaches, migraine, depression, and general mental tension.
-Refreshes the lungs in polluted environments.
-Relaxes psychic tension in the head and eyes from long hours of computer use.
-Relaxes psychic tension in the mid eyebrow area.
-Relieves the pressure on the mid eyebrow area from sustained negative emotions.
-Has a refreshing and relaxing effect on the pineal and pituitary glands controlling the hormonal system.
-In hatha yoga and qigong improves deep breathing practices.
-As part of meditative practices contributes to open the mid eyebrow point of higher awareness.
-Can improve visualization and concentration by giving a feeling of mental lightness and clarity.
-Strengthens the Arcline controlling the aura and the immune system. The Arcline is the projection of the intention through the mid eyebrow giving integrity and strength to the aura and the immune system.
HOW TO DO NASAL WASH WITH A NETI POT
PRECAUTION: People who bleed easily out of the nose should not try the nasal wash or should try it very gently, finding the way that doesn’t causes the nose to bleed.
-Use mineral water without gas or added flavors. Avoid using tap water which, despite treatment, in its passage through the pipes, acquires small amounts of bacteria, protozoa and other microorganisms, including amoebas. Tap water can have a high proportion of microplastics. None of these should go into our nasal passages. If they do, they can remain there and eventually cause problems.
-The water is heated to a point that is comfortable to the touch. Warm water will loosen hard mucus deposits faster than room temperature or cold water. Avoid too cold water which can contract the nasal passages. Fresh water, not cold, is invigorating in very hot weather.
-Salt is added to the warm water. Use unprocessed, pure sea salt without any additives. Never use fluoridated salt, it is a known carcinogen. Avoid salt with any additives such as anti-caking magnesium chloride or iodine. The drawback with sea salt is the amount of invisible microplastics. Rock salt which comes from mines is free of microplastics but sometimes contains anti caking substances.
-The amount of salt depends on the size of the neti pot. Use a full teaspoon for every half liter of water. This will be close to the salinity of the blood.
-If too little or too much salt is used, the water will irritate the nasal passages. Too little salt generates a slight burning sensation; too much salt causes the nose to run after the wash to clear the excess salt and restore the proper balance. The right amount of salt will not irritate the nasal passages. Experiment to find the right amount for you.
-Stir the salt with a spoon until it is fully dissolved in the water, otherwise the granules will go into the nostrils and might irritate.
-Determine which nostril is the dominant one you are breathing through. Place through that nostril the spout of the neti pot.
-Lean over a sink in a low angle so the water can flow out of the other nostril into the sink. The inclining of the torso is done from the hips, not just the head. If the body is not inclined enough, the water will run into the throat and can make you cough.
-Place well the spout of the neti pot in one nostril so that the water does not leak through the sides of the nose. The water has to come out the opposite nostril.
-Tilt your head to the side the water needs to come out of the nose, this prevents water getting into your mouth.
-Do not inhale or exhale when the water begins to run.
-The mouth is kept open at all times when the water is running.
-Let the water run around 10 seconds out of one nostril, stop and GENTLY blow the water out and then switch to the other nostril and do the same. Alternate this way until all the water is finished.
-The blowing of the water is without using force. DO NOT BLOCK one nostril to blow forcefully out of the other, this will put pressure on the ear canal giving the sensation of the ears full of water, of course the water doesn’t go to the ears, but feels that way. Some videos in YouTube have the person doing just that. What you see in YouTube is not always the right way of doing things.
-A good cleansing should have enough water for 5 or more alternations. Some hard mucus needs time to soften and detach. Initially some mucus may come out during the first or second exhale, but more mucus usually comes out toward the 4th or 5th exhale.
-Consuming milk products such as cheese, cream, and milk, tends to generate nasal mucus. The same may happen with too many refined flour products.
-If one nostril is congested and blocked, the water may not flow easily out of the opposite nostril. Keep trying until it opens by BLOWING GENTLY.
-When the water is finished blow any excess out of both nostrils.
-If after doing the above steps, there is still a mucus blockage, the whole process may be repeated several times until it clears. If this still fails to clear the nose, it is recommended that you visit a doctor to ascertain if there is some structural blockage in the nose.
-It is important that no water remains in the nostrils after the wash, so gently blow the nose either into a handkerchief or the basin. Avoid blowing excessively hard.
-Drying the nose properly is a very important part of the practice. People with high blood pressure should be careful of this part. If dizziness results when draining the nose, drying should only be done standing upright.
-If your neti pot is clear color, before you empty the pot look at the remaining water for tiny colored microplastic particles. Sea salt often has microplastics due to the high level of plastic pollution in the oceans. You do not want the microplastic to run through the nostrils, so avoid using the last remaining water in the pot or switch to mineral salt extracted from mines rather than the sea.
-Rinse well the neti pot with warm water after use, especially the tip.
-After the nasal wash gargle with salt water to clear virus or bacteria in the throat. The two main places trough which virus and other microorganisms enter the body is the nose and throat, a third place is the eyes.
-After gargling with salt water, rinse the mouth with clear water to prevent the saltwater irritating the gums.
-The nasal wash and gargle should be done in the morning upon rising, after returning home from public places and in the evening before sleep or more often if living in a very dusty and polluted environment.