Dinacharya, Daily Self Care


Dinacharya is the Ayurvedic daily ritual of self-care. According to Ayurveda, routine plays a significant role in health. A healthy life can best be maintained by creating daily regimen according to each constitution.  Governing all daily actions such as the time you wake up in the morning, the time you eat,  time you begin daily body purification, to the time one goes to sleep is all a part of Dinacharya.

Ayurvedic Dinacharya has been a practice used for thousands of years and has many benefits. It cleanses the body and prevent the buildup of toxins, it helps to keep the senses and mind clear, and is very nourishing. Repeating a routine every morning sets your day and gives you a feeling of stability and steadiness. It promotes a healthy organization of the energy channels and the seating of prana in the body, creating calmness in mind, limiting stress, and cuts down on decision fatigue.

The new science of Circadian Medicine is suggesting that our genes have lost their ability to hear the natural circadian cycles of nature.  In our modern high-tech world, this is becoming a more and more of a challenge, and some people are starting to have symptoms of a “nature deficit disorder.” Modern scientists are only now beginning to understand exactly how important it is for the body to stay in rhythm with nature, while Ayurveda has been rooted in the importance of a connection with nature for millennia. This current research may revolutionize modern medicine as we know it, and Ayurvedic practices can be a foundation for this research to grow.

It is the goal of this article to help you understand the meaning of Dinacharya or Ayurvedic daily routine and support you to designed and maintain a program that reconnects you to your natural rhythms. At first, it may seem overwhelming, but you can take things gradually and ease your way into the routine.

Starting the day right is the most important aspect of Dinacharya. It is said, you will have the best health if you wake up before sunrise and excrete waste shortly after.  During the hours of sleep and in the morning the body is in it’s natural purification time. Dinacharya practices work in harmony to support this rhythm. First thing in the morning Ayurveda suggest tongue scrapping, oil pulling , nasya applications and to drink a warm glass of water with a fresh squeezed lemon or lime to support this process.

Next, to provide a sense of alertness and freshness, one should then rub the body with oils and take a bath. After your shower put on comfortable clothes, exercise and practice yoga for 30 minutes to 1 hour. Light exercise is necessary each day to keep the digestives system high by creating internal heat. It’s best to exercise according to what is correct for your constitution and to be aware not to over exercise. Afterward, rest comfortably on your back with arms and legs outstretched and breath from the lower abdomen, calming the central nervous system.

Self- enhancing practice daily are considered crucial in Ayurveda. The do not have to be difficult but taking 10-20 minutes for meditation, pranayama, yoga, journaling, prayer or other activities that bring well-being to your spirit and mind supports health immensely The more time you allow for these types of practices, the greater you will benefit.

Eat regular meals daily! Irregular meals and excessive snacking can weaken the digestive fire. The natural course of the day sets our digestive system. Having scheduled eating times is essential, with lunch being the largest meal of the day between 12-2pm. When the sun is at its highest, our digestive system is also at its highest, so naturally, this is when the largest meal should be eaten, it is also the best time to eat raw foods and animal proteins.  If possible have dinner before sunset, as the digestion system is set to go to sleep as the sun sets. Breakfast should be before 9 am and something simple and easy to digest. Remember to favor warm, cooked, light meals based on the seasons and on the doshas you want to balance.

It is best to go to bed by ten o’ clock. Keep this regular bedtime as it lets the body know that it is time to wind-down and recuperate. To promote healthy sleep, drink a warm glass of warm cow’s milk or almond milk with cardamom or nutmeg shortly before bed. You can enjoy this while listening to relaxing music, stay away from stimulating conversations, music and television at least one hour before sleep. This suggested regimen follows the flow of energy within the body and its relation to the external environment. It is necessary at all times to remain aware of the flow in natural order to get the maximum benefit from your daily routine.

Check out our video 10 things to do before 10 am for Dinacharya tips!

The sole purpose of these articles is to provide information about the tradition of Ayurveda. This information is not intended for use in the diagnosis, treatment, cure or prevention of any disease.