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Ayurvedic practitioner in Nevada City, California with Hillary Mendoza

The California College of Ayurveda is pleased to introduce the Ayurvedic Health Practitioner Interns 2014. Interns have completed their academic studies and work under the supervision of experienced clinical instructors. This semester's talented group of interns comes from throughout the United States, Canada and United Kingdom.

Ayurvedic Health Practitioner (AHP) interns work on supporting patients to adopt a healthy lifestyle that is in harmony with their constitution. Patients learn about their constitution as well as the nature of any imbalances. They will also receive support to adjust their diet and lifestyle accordingly and to normalize your digestion and elimination. As part of the Ayurvedic program, an intern can include ayurvedic herbs, aromatherapy, color therapy, sound and mantra, and Ayurvedic Yoga Therapy. This is is the best of preventative health care! For those who have a specific condition and are looking for clinical management through Ayurvedic Medicine, they should consider having a consultation with an Clinical Ayurvedic Specialist intern or graduate. 

Interview with Hillary from Nevada City

1)  What inspired you to study Ayurvedic Medicine?

I was inspired and deeply moved by my yoga teacher in Long Beach when she gave a talk on Ayurveda at a yoga festival. I was experiencing many health issues around that time and the way she presented Ayurveda shed so much light on what I was feeling.  It also provided me with a sense of hope and excitement. I knew then that I wanted to start working with her and learn Ayurveda.  As I worked with her, she encouraged me to deepen my studies and visit the California College of Ayurveda, which I did, and immediately enrolled.  It felt amazing to be at the school and to sit in on a class where we learned about the medicinal properties of many different herbs.   I am so excited to have made that decision and look forward to deepening my practice and understanding while helping others pursue their path to greater health and vitality.

2)    What do you think makes Ayurveda attractive to the public?

Ayurveda is a holistic, all encompassing approach to health and healing that takes the individual person and figures out what will work best for them, addressing diet, lifestyle, and herbalism to make profound changes in their quality of life. Ayurveda spans far beyond symptomatic relief and address the root causes of disease.  It addresses and connects us to all aspects of our mind, body and spirit, instead of treating them separately.  Ayurveda allows us to come back into a harmonious rhythm with ourselves and with life--this is why it is becoming more and more attractive to the public.

3)    What do you think about the future of Ayurveda in the United States?

I think there is a LOT of suffering happening right now due to the growing disconnection from our bodies, minds, and each other.  I think people are realizing and feeling very deeply that this disconnection is not the way we really thrive.  People are ready to make changes and Ayurveda offers a holistic approach to do so.  I believe that we need to learn to simplify and that Ayurveda offers the knowledge and structure to do just that. I also believe that both Ayurveda and Western Medicine are very important and need to come together in a synergistic way, so that people can heal physically, mentally, emotionally, and spiritually.  Ayurveda has the potential to lead us back to becoming a culture of healthy, happy, and WHOLE beings. 

4)    What is your favorite therapy in this traditional system of medicine from India?

My favorite therapy is Bliss Therapy which is a combination of three therapies.  The first is abhyanga (a synchronized  two person lymphatic oil massage), followed by shirodhara (warm oil poured in a consistent stream over the ajna chakra).  The treatment ends with svedana (a full body herbal steam).  Abhyanga feels so nourishing and relaxes the body, while shirodhara allows the mind to take a break and calms the nervous system.  Svedana steams the nourishing oils into your skin and brings the therapies all together so you feel incredibly revitalized and new in a matter of hours.  It is truly blissful.

5) What does your path to Ayurveda look like?

I grew up In Petaluma, a small town in Northern California. I left to go to college at Long Beach State University to study painting and fiber arts where I began to learn, expand and explore my inner world more deeply.  I also met some incredible people who introduced me to different healing arts and opened the door to my own healing journey.  While living in Long Beach, I was faced with one health challenge after another,  always dealing with something new.  I was not getting the help or relief I needed with Western medicine because my aliments felt deeper than just physical symptoms.  I needed guidance and support but I didn't know where to find them.  I began to deepen my practice with an incredible yoga teacher who inspired me and introduced me to Ayurveda, became my practitioner, and helped guide me back to greater balance.  She also inspired me to continue my studies, which led me to Nevada City.  It has been such a journey and I am constantly growing and refining as I put different pieces of Ayurveda into practice.  I am in such joy and gratitude to be practicing Ayurveda and to be helping others who are looking to dive into their own self healing by getting to know themselves through the scope of Ayurveda.

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