Ayurvedic Guidelines for Summer
It’s July already and here on the East Coast it is getting hot! Summer is like that – hot, sharp & bright! It’s what we call pitta season in Ayurveda, made up of fire and water. How do we keep from overheating not only physically but also emotionally during the summer season? How do we stay cool and NOT allow pitta to become aggravated?
I have some simple Ayurvedic tips to follow this summer to keep pitta balanced and stay cool even in the midst of a summer scorcher!
- First it goes without saying, wear clothing made of cotton or linen and make sure they are loose fitting. The best colors are white, gray, blue, purple and green.
- Eat a diet that is sweet, bitter, cool and juicy such as melons, apples, pears, cucumbers, cherries, peaches, water with lime juice, mint, and lots of salads. Avoid eating meat more than once a week; avoid sour fruits, citrus fruits, beets, carrots, ginger, garlic, onion, tomato, and cheese.
- Add some dandelions or thistle to your morning smoothies to cool the liver and skin.
- Avoid red wine and hard alcohol; drink beer instead.
- Exercise early in the morning at the coolest part of the day.
- Wear cooling jewelry made of sandalwood, jade, pearl, amethyst crystal, moonstone, and any silver jewelry.
- Practice shitali pranayama, a cooling breathing exercise (find a yoga teacher to teach you how – it’s really simple).
- Inversions are pitta provoking, so minimize inversions if you already have a lot of pitta.
- Swim in a cool body of water; avoid laying in the sun longer than 15 minutes.
- Napping is totally acceptable in the summer as it is a season of low energy.
- Rub some coconut oil on the soles of your feet before going to bed, this will help cool you down.
- The best side to sleep on is the right side, it cools pitta.
- Finally, the best time to have sex is between 9 and 10 pm, which is not yet pitta time but still cool enough.
Summer is the perfect time to enjoy nature. Take walks in the forests and gardens, check out what is growing in your own backyard, and don’t forget to take walks at night under the moonlit skies – the moon cools your blood and mind.
References: V. Lad, “Ayurvedic Home Remedies”.
Pear Love Green Smoothie
- 2 pears, chopped
- 1 cucumber, chopped
- 1 cup spinach or a handful of dandelions
- juice of 1 lime
- 1/2 cup filtered water, coconut water or coconut milk
- ice (optional)
- stevia or 1/2 tbs raw honey – to taste (optional)
Blend all ingredients in your high-powered blender and enjoy!