A spa so beautiful it's enough to make you sick

There are few more curious spectator sports than vomiting to order. But I have swallowed a litre and a half of warm, salty water — glugging seven glasses in rapid succession under the watchful gaze of my yoga teacher, Sandeep Aggrawalla. (Early in the morning and on an empty stomach and after breathing deeply.) Then I've tickled the back of my throat with my fingers. And now I'm throwing up like an elephant, puking saline water in one huge wave. "You're a natural," Sandeep enthuses.

The aim of Kunjal (as voluntary regurgitation is known) is to cleanse the stomach, oesophagus, throat, lungs and chest. It's said to wash out strong acid and excess mucous and, in yogic therapy, it plays a key role in alleviating asthma and preventing ulcers. It takes me about ten minutes, but a pro can do it daily in three. Frankly, it leaves me feeling rather shaky and offcolour.

Then it's time for Jal Neti — allegedly to alleviate sinusitis, bronchitis and negative thinking. This involves filling a doll's house teapot with another brew of warm saline solution, tilting my head, popping the spout up one nostril and pouring. The water goes up one nasal cavity and comes out of the other nostril, first in a drip, then in a steady stream. Afterwards my sinuses are born again and I feel clear-headed.

If this sounds crazy, mostly the treatments are wonderful. I'm on the new Yogic Detox programme at Ananda in the Himalayas, one of the world's loveliest destination spas. Ananda is on a palace estate near Rishikesh, India, a place of pilgrimage. The stupendous location overlooks the Ganges and is filled with music, flowers and an endlessly helpful staff.

The week-long programme includes different Hatha yogic techniques for cleansing internal organs (Shatkriya), asana (yogic postures), pranayama (breathing techniques), meditation and an Ayurvedic diet. I follow a food plan prescribed by an Ayurvedic doctor for my specific dosha, or constitution. The helpings are small and inventive. I have a detox headache on the third day but don't feel any cravings between meals.

First-rate treatments facilitate further detoxing, with Abhyanga (four-handed synchronised massage) to Choornaswedana (a dreamy massage with warmed herbal poultices). I also practise daily yoga and trek to the nearby temple.

I leave floating on a spiritual cloud, feeling calm, happy, with luminescent skin, having lost a few pounds and with my sinuses and (supposedly) chakras cleared. It seemed like an extreme programme, but it's a Yogic Detox-lite programme. There's a variant called Vastra Dhauti which, fortunately, they don't do at Ananda.

A 3m string of cloth is ingested, rolled around the stomach muscles, then pulled out again ...

Wellbeing Escapes (wellbeingescapes.co.uk) offers a seven-night Ananda Yogic Detox package from £2,400pp, including full board, flights and transfers. British Airways (ba.com) flies to Dehli from £537 return.The saline '' water goes up one nostril and out of the other. My sinuses are born again and I feel clear-headed

Above: the meditation and music pavilion at Ananda, "one of the world's loveliest destination spas", left