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An Ayurvedic guide for Summer

Ayurveda has specified protocols for each Season, so the body, mind, and soul feel nourished. As days stretch out to be longer with ample sunshine, our bodies will experience heat. But if it grows too strong, we may notice excess Pitta-related disorders like irritability, acidity, acne, burning sensations, nausea, and skin inflammations. The qualities of Summer are hot, sharp, and penetrating. We should change our habits and diet to stay in tune with the Season. One has to keep in mind ways to balance the excess heat build-up and balance it with cooling activities and Food. Start with the following:

Stay Hydrated: The immense Summer heat tends to dry out the moisture from the soil, plants, and us. It is essential to stay hydrated and retain moisture.

Favor the following beverages

  • Coconut water

  • Barley water

  • Boiled and cooled water

  • Rosewater

  • Cows milk

  • Aloe vera juice

  • Freshly squeezed fruit juice

  • Mildly spiced buttermilk

  • Sweetened buttermilk

  • Sugar cane juice

  • Chamomile tea

  • Hibiscus tea

  • Dandelion tea

  • Camphor infused water

Eat a pitta pacifying diet - Avoid foods that can be heating and foods that are excessively salty, sour, and spicy. Instead, go for bitter greens, fresh green vegetables, astringent, and sweet tastes. Here are some recommended foods

  • Rose Jam

  • Raisins

  • Cucumber

  • Coriander

  • Soaked and peeled almonds

  • Tender coconut meat

  • Whole grains

  • Pomegranate

  • Raisins and soaked dates

  • Bittermelon

  • Panneer, cottage cheese, soft cheese

  • Fresh fruit and veggies- Cucumbers, root vegetables, squashes, cruciferous vegetables, greens, asparagus.

Avoid anything that can be aggravating pitta

  • Coffee

  • Black tea

  • Fermented drinks like kombucha

  • Fermented Food like kimchi, idli, dosa, aged cheese

  • Heavy to digest foods

  • Meat and eggs

  • Spicy curries

  • Nightshades

  • Sour drinks

  • Caffeinated beverages

  • Alcohol

  • Mustard

  • Cumin

  • Chilli and Pepper

  • Salted nuts and chips

  • Deep-Fried foods

  • Yogurt

  • Vinegar

  • Pickles

Since the Agni is compromised during hot summer days and maintains homeostasis, it is essential to enhance it with easy-to-digest foods and herbs. Include mild herbs like

  • Cilantro

  • Fennel

  • Dandelion

  • Neem

  • Amla - Indian gooseberry

  • Triphala

  • Turmeric

  • Rose

Protect yourself from heat

Do not expose yourself to excessive sunlight. Stay indoors during the peak times of sun exposure.

  • Wear lighter colors like sky blue or white

  • Wear cotton and delicate weight fabrics

  • Wear a headcover when spending outdoors during the day

  • Take a spray bottle with Rosewater and aloe vera juice and spritz it as needed

  • Sandalwood paste lepas or masks help calm and nourish the skin

  • Wear flowers in your hair and flower garlands

  • Aromatherapy with cooling fragrances like sandalwood, ylang-ylang, lotus, jasmine, rose, and other floral scents

  • Listening to soothing water sounds

Include Ghee in your diet

Ghee is a very friendly fat that can be cooling for your body but at the same time ignite that metabolic fire without causing excess flames or heat within. Ghee helps maintain homeostasis during the Summer months, and the heat in Summer dries out the moisture leading to Vata, so to ensure there is not too much drying from the heat, it's important to consume good fats like Ghee and olive oils.

Enjoy Moon bathing

  • Taking an evening stroll under the moonlight

  • Cooling activities like swimming

  • Beach activities

  • Boat rides

Avoid too much physical exercise

  • Avoid intense workout

  • Avoid excessive indulgence in intercourse

  • Choose cooling Pranayama like sheetali and Sitkari as needed

  • Choose water-based activities like swimming

Rest and restore

  • Rise early with the Sun

  • This rule is exempted for the sick and debilitated. Pregnant women are also allowed to sleep in.

  • Napping is allowed on hot Summer afternoons

  • Avoid napping right after a meal, and if you are overweight

Protect the gentle Agni

During Summer, the metabolic fire is volatile, hence protect it by taking Ghee and a lesser amount of Food. Since your Agni and appetite are low during this Season, you eat relatively more minor. To avoid overeating and eating heavily to digest foods.

Following simple guidelines like these will help you keep your cool during Summer. Contact ArogyaVeda @248-734-4633 for Ayurvedic Consultations

Images credit: Pixabay/Unsplash

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