You, Your Skin and the Monsoon

You are what you eat – and the results of your food habits are there for you to see – on your skin. Let’s pull some ingredients off the kitchen shelf and make some home remedies for your skin!

You, Your Skin and the Monsoon
- Dr. Kristine Jerome

During Monsoon we might just experience more skin problems than usual. As the largest organ of our body, the skin reflects our state of health – our past, present and future. When we are in good health our skin is vibrant and the texture is smooth and glowing, when we are in poor health our skin is dull and flat – often with colour variation. When our body is not in harmony then we are prone to skin eruptions and disorders.

When Monsoon hits, our skin often reflects the season – we feel hot, sticky and wet and then our skin responds. According to Ayurveda, this is because of heat. Skin is connected to Pitta, the energy that creates heat in the body. So at this time we have heat on the outside and heat on the inside.

We can’t control the weather, but we can help our skin at this time and, indeed, anytime by what we put into our body and also what we put onto the body. How great is that?! Let your skin reflect who you are and want to be during any season.

Internally for all skin conditions:
• Avoid all incompatible foods like dairy and fruit together or meat and dairy together including seafood. This is a big step and an important one. During Monsoon – avoid chillies, tomatoes and yoghurt from your diet – this will help to balance the hot, sticky, wet components of the climate.
• Soak twenty black raisins overnight. Blend with water in the morning and drink on an empty stomach.

Internally:
Soak the following ingredients overnight. Then blend and drink one third of the mixture three times a day until finished.
1 teaspoon of coriander powder
½ teaspoon of coriander powder
¼ teaspoon of black pepper (freshly ground)
10 black raisins
2 teaspoons of turmeric powder
3 rose petals (washed thoroughly, preferably fresh from a pesticide-free plant)
1-2 cups of water

Externally for acne or pimples:
Apply a thin layer of this paste to the area:
2 tablespoons of banana pulp (mash the banana)
¼ teaspoon of ghee
1 teaspoon of sesame seeds
2 almonds or ½ teaspoon of pine nuts
Water or milk to make a paste

Put everything in a blender and churn to a pulp. Apply to the area – make the application thick and leave on for half an hour. Rinse off with warm water. Do this daily before bed.

Make Your Own Birdfeeder

Let’s lay the table for our feathered friends

And see who flies in for lunch today!

Do It Yourself Bird Feeder   Bird feeder pic

What you need -

Empty bottle of water or soda
Enough birdseed (or bajra/kangini) to fill more than half a bottle
Craft knife
Strong wire/ribbon/twine
Old wooden spatula/spoon
Marker
Cotton balls

• Begin by deciding exactly where your spatula will go, this will be the post for your bird to stand on while it eats.
• Mark where the holes are going to be – front and back.
• Use a craft knife to make slits in the form of an x on the bottle.
• Make a small circle with the craft knife ¬above the slits. This will be where the bird will get his food.
• Insert the wooden spoon.
• Plug the hole with a cotton ball to prevent the birdseed from spilling out. Fill the bottle with birdseed.
•Tie twine, ribbon, or wire around the top of the bottle and replace the cap. This is for hanging the bottle.
• Finally, hang it from a tree and remove the cotton ball so the birds can get to the seeds!

And voila! The refreshments are laid out and now all you have to do is wait for your merry gliding guests to pay you a visit!¬¬¬

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The list of below of Common Garden Aves (scientific name for a bird!) may help you identify your lunch guests –

Small:
House Sparrow – fast disappearing from Indian cities due to pollution, habitat and food loss
Purple Sunbird – male has metallic purple body as if dipped in oil!
Tailorbird – pale mossy green upper feathers, light terracotta crown
Ashy Prinia – slate grey uppers, rose colored underbelly and red eyes
Oriental White-eye – neon green body with a white ring around their eyes
Coppersmith Barbet – metallic tuk tuk tuk call, juvenile bird lacks red feathering around eyes

Medium Sized:
Indian Myna – common sight in the city, brown & black with white under wings
Brahminy Starling – black crown, pale orange underbelly
Pied Starling – black and brown body, orange around eyes and bright yellow beak
Jungle Babbler – grey streaky body, ‘talks’ incessantly around company
Red-whiskered Bulbul – white & brown body, black crest, red around eyes & below tail
Red-vented Bulbul – white & brown body, red below tail
Laughing Dove – brownish-pink underparts, grey feathers, black tips and speckled neck
Black Drongo – glossy black body, long tail forked at end
Rose-ringed Parakeet – a parakeet with a rose ‘necklace’
Brown-headed Barbet – speckled brown head and green lower feathers
White-throated Kingfisher – brown body, blue streak, white breast
Black-rumped Flameback – white and black eye stripe
Spotted Owlet – speckled and spotted feathers, big eyes

Medium +
House Crow – you know them when you see them!
Blue Rock Pigeon – common pigeon in our cities
Collared Dove – brownish-pink underparts, grey feathers, black tips, black collar
Yellow-footed Green Pigeon – large, olive yellow feathers, grey underparts
Asian Koel – blackish green feathers, yellow ring around the eyes

Large
Black Kite – an acrobat of the sky! Large black and brown kite with large wingspan
Grey Hornbill – prominent base at the beak, yellow tipped beak
Red-wattled Lapwing – long yellow stilt like legs, red around eyes & beak, brown/black body

X Large
Indian Peafowl – the majestic peacock and peahen

Our Child Guest Editor for May-June’15 & July-August’15

Our  Child Guest Editor for Thinkling Issues – Codebreakers (May-June 2015) and Showstoppers (July-August 2015) is the fantastic Imran Alexander Batra. He has been writing for Thinkling Magazine & blog and this year he joined the team as our Guest Editor.

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Imran Batra is a soon-to-be 14 year old maniac who loves books and music. His other interests include playing football, swimming, and playing the guitar. His current favourite song is Gone, Gone, Gone by Philip Philips, and his all-time favourite book is The Ocean At The End Of The Lane by Neil Gaiman.

Read the insightful survey he conducted for July-August 2015 issue (magazine hits the stand on 1st July 2015)

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Want to wear the Thinkling guest editor’s hat?

Send us an original piece of fiction and one of non-fiction that you have written yourself, a short bio telling us what you are interested in so that we can match you to the Thinkling issue you could best contribute to editor@thinkling.in