Marye O’Brien, of Maiaveda, is a partner of Daylesford Macedon Tourism and inspires us with her extraordinary passion and commitment to wellbeing and rejuvenation.

We asked her to give us her insights into how we can be at our very best during these difficult times, and what we can do to ensure that our minds and bodies are best placed to ward off illness. Here are her thoughts…

In reflecting on the events of the past weeks, I am reminded of everyday health practices that I used growing up in a large family. We lived a modest life, living within our means. Both my parents were born during WW2, and my grandparents were born soon after WW1 and lived through the Depression.

  • We ate simple, fresh home-cooked food,
  • We had a veggie garden, and Dad made wine from his very own grapes,
  • We had chickens, a duck, a turtle, guinea pigs, a cat and dogs,
  • We protected our animals, fed them and took care of them as we would our children,
  • We prayed morning and night and dressed up for Sunday mass,
  • We helped each other and our neighbours. We laughed. We enjoyed our simple life, and
  • Every Sunday after dinner, Dad would play his piano accordion, and we would sing along.

Those were some fundamentals of life, that we should revisit. Achieving balance in all aspects of consciousness creates happiness, beauty and peace, and supports health and wellbeing.
It is at the core of Ayurveda and the essence of life.

Immunity is our entire lifestyle

In light of the current situation and this specific virus, I would encourage you to follow some of the preventative measures below:


  • Drink warm water but avoid excess water accumulation in the body as this virus thrives on moisture. Minimise high water content fruits, such as melons,
  • Avoid or decrease your intake of animal protein and eggs. Instead, increase your complex carbohydrates intake, such as taro root, arrowroot, sweet potatoes,
  • Increase your intake of vegetables such as cooked lentils, mung beans and dark leafy greens. This will make your body more alkaline, which is ideal for immunity, and
  • Eat warm, cooked foods – nothing cold nor directly from the fridge. Eat dry snacks and dry fruits


  • Take a natural calcium supplement or one tablespoon per day of sesame seed powder as a natural calcium source. This keeps the lower part of the lungs clean and dry from excess mucus,
  • Take natural Vitamin D and C, and incorporate vegetarian foods that contain K2-7, including ghee and fresh green chillies. This will help keep your lungs clear,
  • Take 25mg of zinc to ward off viral infections,
  • Keep your nasal passages very clean. While all salts are antibacterial, rock salt (which are mined from rocks is devoid of any chemical components and environmental pollutants), does not hold moisture like other salts, like sea salt. It is therefore ideal to use rock salt with a Neti Pot to decrease mucus, congestion and moisture,
  • Put a couple of drops of eucalyptus oil on a handkerchief or tissue and routinely inhale the scent. It helps to keep the lungs clean and open while reducing congestion and mucus in the lungs,
  • Gargle once per day: 1/4 cup of warm water, 1/4 tsp rock salt, 1/8 tsp baking soda, a pinch of turmeric. This will make your throat more alkaline, increasing resistance to infection. For any persistent irritation, pain or inflammation, increase to three times per day,
  • Drink tea with ginger, holy basil (Tulsi), fresh turmeric and honey,
  • Give yourself a gentle massage with warm sesame oil, incorporating some essential oils according to your dosha (For Vata: lemon, neroli and sweet orange; for Pitta: rose and sandalwood; for Kapha: sage and lavender),
  • Sleep more, especially during this time. For optimal healing and rejuvenation, most people need 7-8 hours of good, sound sleep. This allows the body to regenerate, therefore enhancing your innate immunity, Perform simple, breathing exercises such as alternate-nostril or breath retention (kumbhaka) breathing. Ten minutes of this practice each morning and night is ideal, Perform sun salutations with the Om Surya Namaha mantra. Invoking the energy of the sun within yourself will enhance the body’s ability to fight bacteria and viruses, Burn incense and herbs in the house to clean and purify the air, Meditate as much as possible. Inhale and say, “I’m healthy”, exhale and repeat “I’m happy”, Get to know yourself. Experience your higher consciousness, Be vigilant handwashing with soap, Connect with Mother Nature and look up, and focus on gratitude – note things for which you are grateful.

Extra support

You may have other specific questions regarding your situation, and I will provide additional online/phone wellness support if you would like to discuss any diet and lifestyle recommendations further from the context of this confinement period, I am here for you; we are all in this together.

I am currently checking in regularly over the phone or via Face Time/WhatsApp, with a number of clients wanting support with:

  • pregnancy
  • emotional eating
  • managing anxiety and/or insomnia
  • relationship and life guidance counsel
  • spiritual awakening and connection
  • learning to meditate
  • developing a self-care practise regime
  • distant sound/energy healings
Maiaveda 17 of 70 uai
Marye O’Brien, Maiaveda

We have set up a private Community Facebook Page “Chat and Chai Wellness Lounge” as a way we can stay connected; it is a safe, non-judgement educational forum to help each other build resilience.

About the author

Maiaveda 17 of 70
Marye O’Brien, Maiaveda
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Marye is a qualified Ayurvedic health practitioner and Vedic counsellor. She is also a Certified Yoga Teacher who believes the the ancient insights of traditional mind/ body medicine along with modern medical research can delivery a happy, healthy and vibrant life. Marye herself delivers this wisdom in a practical way through healing touch, sound therapies, movement and medicinal foods.