Ayurveda tips for the summer
August 07, 2020
According to Ayurveda or traditional Indian medicine (the Sanskrit root ayur means "life" or "longevity" and veda means "science"), we are all born with a particular balance of doshas, which corresponds to our body-mind constitution and remains unchanged throughout life. The doshas, Vata, Pitta and Kapha, are derived from a combination of the five elements: Fire, Water, Earth, Space and Air.
What are the doshas in Ayurveda?
Each of us has an inherent tendency towards one or more of these principles, which determines our physical, mental and emotional tendencies and our predisposition to certain health problems. We generally have a predominance of one or two doshas in our constitution and this is determined at the time of conception.
When our doshas become unbalanced, that is when we tend to get sick, which is why we can say that Ayurvedic medicine is a holistic and integral method whose basis is clearly preventive.
And how did the seasonal changes cost us our balance?
According to Aryuveda, each season has an associated dosh that naturally tends to rise in our body due to the climatic conditions inherent to each season.
Imbalances in our dosha are due to an excess or deficiency of its components in our body.
In summer, Pitta
is the energy that tends to aggravate and people whose dosha is predominantly Pitta in their constitution are the most affected at this time.
The attributes of Pitta are what you might predict (fire) - hot, greasy, luminous, intense, sharp and odorous. That is why all of these options you want to increase during the summer months.
Tips for reducing Pitta in summer
When it comes to pacify Pitta we must focus on food, create routines of rest and activity. Being respectful of schedules helps to balance the extremely active digestive fire in Pitta.
We should try to keep fresh internally and externally. To do this:
- Preference of sweet, bitter and astringent foods. Avoid excess of spicy foods.
- Seasonal fruits: melons, watermelons, plums, lime, mangoes, ripe pineapple, sweet apricots and coconut. As it is a propitious time to drink cold beverages, juices can become a great ally.
- Vegetables: asparagus, broccoli, cucumber, green leaves, zucchini, green beans, cabbage, Brussels sprouts, celery, lamb's lettuce, beets, carrots, mushrooms, black olives, potatoes, radishes.
- Cereals: oats, barley, rice, wheat, couscous, spelt.
- Superfoods: aloe vera juice, barley grass, nutritional yeast, spirulina.
- Legumes: all except soybeans.
- Germinated seeds.
- Dairy products: Ghee (clarified butter).
- Nuts and seeds: almonds, flax, pumpkin.
- Spices: parsley, fennel, cinnamon, coriander, cardamom, turmeric, mint, cumin, fresh ginger, saffron, vanilla.
- If you suffer from inflammations of the digestive tract, we recommend that you take 2 capsules of Amalaki per day. Amalaki or Amla is a fruit that helps to decrease excess Pitta, as it acts as a cooling tonic, relieving heat, inflammation and burning throughout the body.
"When the diet is inadequate, medicine is of no use. When the diet is adequate, medicine is not necessary." Ancient Ayurvedic Proverb.
2. Yoga routines, meditation and pranayamas
Before meditation or your yoga practice incorporate breathing techniques or pranayamas that regulate body temperature. Sit in a comfortable posture that allows you to keep your spine erect, with your head, neck and trunk aligned. We recommend practicing:
Shitali Pranayama: Extend your tongue out of your mouth as far as you can, forming a U-tube with your tongue. Inhale through your mouth and at the end of the inhalation, place your tongue inside, close your mouth and exhale through your nose.
Shitkari Pranayama: Keep your teeth slightly apart, exposing them as you separate your lips. Bend your tongue against the roof of your mouth. Inhale slowly and deeply through the mouth. Exhale slowly through your nose. This is one round.
Usually 15 rounds is enough to cool your body.
In your yoga practice tend to gentle exercises, Hatha Yoga or Yin Yoga
can be very appropriate styles for this time of year, and if you are used to heavy exercise, try to do it first thing in the morning. On Conscious Television
you can find hundreds of yoga, meditation and pranayama classes tailored to different needs.
3. Other recommendations
Essential oils: sandalwood, jasmine, ylang ylang, lavender and orange blossom. You can put a few drops on your neck or in an aromatizer.
Before going to bed, refresh your feet with cold water and give yourself a brief massage on the soles with coconut oil.
Also, as this is a time when energy is depleted, if possible, allow yourself a short nap in the middle of the day.
Would you like to know what is your Dosha ? Take our test by clicking on Know your Dosha and of course, do not miss the Ayurveda Course led by our expert Jane Hernandez.