CCF, the Miracle Tea of Ayurveda

Oh, you’re in my blood like holy wine
You taste so bitter and so sweet
Oh, I could drink a case of you, darling
And I would still be on my feet
Oh, I would still be on my feet
– Joni Mitchell 

I know, I know, miracle is a pretty lofty word to be throwing around. But truly, this tea is kind of a life saver. A combination of three classical kitchen spices, cumin, coriander and fennel, together these seeds work to save your gut. I’ve been on the CCF wagon for the last few weeks and am delighted with the results. What inspired this new habit you ask? A phenomenal book called The Prime by Dr. Kulreet Chaudhary.

A few months back I was asked to write Ayurvedic book reviews for the website Everyday Ayurveda. The founder put out a call to contributors to ship their books to my home address and we would give them a shout out on EA. Coincidentally, Dr. Kulreet Chaudhary spotted the email and immediately shipped out her freshly published book, The Prime- Prepare and Repair your Body for Spontaneous Weight Loss.  Not only was I psyched to be getting free books in the mail, but this book actually looked legit (plus the author is stunning- just saying, she must be on to something).

An integrative neurologist and neuroscientist, Kulreet is a trail blazer in her field where she blends Ayurveda into her neurology practice. Similar to Dr. Akil Palansiamy’s tale in his book Paleovedic, Dr. Chaudhary grew up a 1st generation Indian-American. Until high school she ate a traditional Indian diet and followed a more simple existence. However, eventually she succumbed to the siren call of the western diet and lifestyle. Picking up the unsavory habits of processed food, technology and the “sleep is for the weak” mentality, her health began to take a dive. Achy joints, foggy thinking and malaise started to riddle her daily existence. The clincher was when she sought relief through migraine medication, pills she prescribes on the daily, and was shocked by the side effects of these drugs. A crisis of faith ensued. How can she, in good conscience, be giving out these drugs to her clients?

This is when Dr. Chaudhary rediscovered her roots and vitality through the indigenous medicine of her Motherland. Ayurveda allowed her to slowly regain her health. This was done through diet modification, slowing down, reintegrating meditation and healing the gut mucosa with tea, bone broth, fiber and other Ayurvedic herbs.

Inspired by her results, she started weaving Ayurveda into her neurology practice. Patients with ALS, MS, Parkinson’s and diabetic peripheral neuropathy all started seeing tangible results and relief from their haunting symptoms. In fact, her new protocol of addressing the root of disease through diet and lifestyle was so successful that her colleagues became concerned. They worried that with her effectively treating patients that she would ruin her “business”. This appalled her. Of course she wanted to cure the sick, isn’t that why one goes into medicine? So she wrote a book, to spread the love and encourage people to heal in their own home.

Thoroughly convinced by the validity of her evidence, I was eager to give this system a shot.  I, Miss Frugal, placed a rather substantial Amazon order (and yes, Chad, I know, Jet is better). The book is laid out in 4 stages. These stages are to be followed at a pace based on your current state of health, anywhere from 2-4 weeks a stage.

Stage 1 Includes:

  • Daily dry brushing, or garshana, which uses silk gloves
  • Sipping CCF tea throughout the day
  • Taking 1000 mg of Triphala each night
  • Flushing the system with extra fiber (psyllium husks and fiber) every other night

Tomorrow will wrap up my second week of stage 1. I’m moving back to New England, so I figure I will stick to stage one for a few more weeks, just to keep things simple. Anyway, I can say with authority that drinking CCF tea for these last 14 days has been a real game changer. My poop floats. Every. Single. Time. No joke. In Ayurveda, banana shaped floating poops are ideal. This means that nutrients have been properly assimilated and digested. Not to get too descriptive and vulgar, but I was usually more in the cow plop arena for my daily BM.

So what’s makes this CCF tea the miracle worker?

According to Dr. Chaudhary, the purpose of this tea is to

  • Heal the gut mucosa
  • Aid in the absorption of nutrients- Side note, most people are poor nutrient assimilators. How you absorb nutrients can be determined by the health of the nails and tongue. If the nails have vertical ridges this suggests sad assimilation. Similarly, if you notice that the edges of your tongue look bald or scalloped, this too points to low absorption.
  • Stimulates the lymphatic system- our lymph is basically like the garbage man of our body. Its job is to remove waste from the body. Unlike the venous system, the lymph does not have its own pump. The lymph needs a little cooperation from us. Lymphatic movement can be stimulated through massage, exercise and this tea!

Basically this tea helps to get things moving in and out of the body. The coriander is known to increase urine production, so be mindful of that if you are, say driving across the country or going to a Cub’s game.

This may seem like a no-brainer, but this tea should be consumed hot. The heat helps to scrub the body. Think about washing the dishes- if you use cold water is that effective? A cooler tea would actually cause a bit of blood constriction and inhibit the flow of the waste out.  What color are your toes after you submerge them in icy Lake Michigan water? Pale, right? A sign that the blood is not flowing as fluidly in this area. Cold creates constriction, heat opens up the vessels. The ultimate goal is to increase the blood circulation in the digestive system so that digestion becomes top notch and waste is sent south.

Let’s look at the merits of each of these herbs to further understand the magic of this tea.

Benefits of Cumin

  • Stimualtes agni (our digestive fire)
  • Gas
  • Indigestion
  • Eliminates ama (toxins)
  • Relives Congestion
  • Contains antioxidants and iron
  • Soothes inflamed mucous membranes
  • Improves bowel function

Cumin pacifies both Vata and Kapha dosha. However, due to its slightly heating nature, Pitta may find that in excess, cumin will increase the fire element. However, the coriander and fennel work to balance the heat, so do not panic my Pitta pals.

Benefits of Coriander

  • Improves digestion
  • Relieves gas
  • Promotes urination
  • Helps with many pitta disorders- especially those of the urinary or digestive variety
  • Increases digestion and absorption
  • Treats intestinal disorders
  • Soothes indigestion
  • Decreases spasms
  • Reduces inflammation- even shown to help with Rheumatoid arthritis

Benefits of Fennel

  • One of the best herbs for strengthen agni without aggravating pitta
  • Stops cramping
  • Increases mental alertness
  • Promotes breast milk flow
  • Helps with IBS
  • Relaxes the digestive tract
  • Alleviates gas and indigestion
  • Increase the burning of fat
  • Appetite suppressant
  • Moves lymph

Good stuff, right? No more gas, a stronger digestion, increased fat burning, less toxins…And without further ado,  the recipe

CCF (Miracle- Poop Floating) Tea

Ingredients:

  • ½ tsp Cumin Seeds
  • ½ tsp Coriander Seeds
  • ½ tsp Fennel Seeds
  • 4-5 Cups of Water

Method:

  1. Heat the water in a stainless steel pot over a high flame
  2. Add the seeds- I ordered 1 pound bags off of AmazonStarwest Botanicals and Frontier are both great companies, organic and fresh.
  3. Allow the tea to boil for 5-10 minutes, depending on the preferred strength
  4. Strain the seeds
  5. Place in an insulated thermos and sip throughout the day- try and consume by 6 pm so you don’t have to piddle in the middle of the night

If you get into the habit of making this tea daily, here are some of my sloth ideas for ease. Procure a 7 day pill organizer- scoop ½ a tsp of each seed into the compartments so you are set for a week. Genius.

My other brainstorm is combining equal parts in greater quantities into a glass jar. Perhaps ½ cup of Cumin, Coriander and Fennel, shake to fully integrate. Each morning simply add 1 ½ tsp of the premixed blend to your water.

Sip this miracle tea and truly reap the health benefits. Floating poop, increased assimilation and a general overall glow and luster. Go get em tiger!

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