Ancient Mayan Wisdom

Lush, green, tropical ferns display ancient Mayan wisdom for health.

Mayan abdominal massage has become popularized recently due to the work of Rosita Arvigo and her interpretation of traditional ancient Mayan healing techniques. As a practitioner of lomilomi massage and Hawaiian healing on the North Shore of Oahu, I find that the Mayan belief system holds similar wisdom. 

In her book, Rainforest Home Remedies, Rosita Arvigo, N.D., shares her wisdom about traditional Mayan healing. Towards the end of the book, she leaves the reader with 9 simple tips for health based on the lifestyle of Mayan villagers. 

Nine Tips for a Healthy Life based on Simple Mayan Wisdom

These tips are taken from Rosita Arvigo's book, Rainforest Home Remedies (193-195).

     Arvigo, Rosita, and Nadine Epstein. Rainforest Home Remedies. HarperSanFranciso, 2001.

1. Diet: It is important not to overeat. When you have a meal, eat thoughtfully and consciously. Take time to chew your food in order to aid digestion of nutrients. Eat a balanced diet that is free of harmful chemicals.

2. Water: It is important to drink plenty of water at room temperature.

3. Exercise:   Daily physical activity is vital to your health. Dr. Arvigo suggests at least 30 minutes of exercise a day.

4. Natural Remedies: Dr. Arvigo urges to try natural remedies and herbs before resorting to Western medicine. Consult a naturopathic physician on how to maintain your health naturally.

5. Massage: In Mayan culture, massage is of great importance. Dr. Arvigo advises to get full-body massages to lower stress, promote blood-flow, and enhance the immune system.

6. Let go of Emotions: Do not keep your feelings pent up inside. Talk to a friend or mental health counselor.

7. Give: It is important to give freely of yourself- both to others and to your greater community. According to Dr. Arvigo, by focusing on the needs of others your own needs are intrinsically rewarded.

8. Breathe: Our bodies require oxygen to survive. Breathe deeply with intent.

9. Play; Having fun is of the most importance in life. Contemplate what this means to you and make the time for it! Getting plenty of rest ensures that you have plenty of energy left over to play.