What guides your life and energizes your soul is the Sun.
The Sun not only sustains our lives and gives us vitality, but it also represents our spirituality and our ability to see clearly beyond the material plane.
From an Ayurvedic perspective, the Sun is Agni and the season we feel it’s potency the most is during the summer months called Pitta Season.
Below are some tips on how to enjoy and receive the blessings from the Sun without aggravating Pitta Dosha during the hot summer months.
- Enjoy the outdoors early in the morning, before the intensity of the Sun sets in. I recommend to wake up around 5 am. (before sunrise) while the temperature outside is cool.
- Morning routines should include scraping tongue, and brushing teeth with astringent flavored toothpaste or tooth powder will help to pacify pitta. Next, swish some coconut oil for a minute or two in your mouth to keep gums healthy
- Exercise should be light, and yoga asanas should be Pitta pacifying (avoid inversions if you have excess pitta). Pranayama such as Shitali Pranayama is both cooling and calming for Pitta dosha.
- In the summer, take a shower after your yoga and pranayama practice to cool the body down; remember to do a self oil massage (abhyanga) with a cooling, pitta pacifying oil.
- Wear light colored clothing (white, gray, pale blue, light green) made preferably from cotton or linen.
- Eat pitta pacifying food – these are foods that contain mostly bitter, astringent, sweet tastes such as greens and fruit. Red meat produces a lot of heat in the body, so its best to avoid it in the summer.
- Use ghee in your food and when cooking, its excellent at pacifying pitta and good for digestion.
- This is the time of year I give the green light to juices and smoothies – just make sure you follow good food combining protocols when you’re making them and that you don’t drink them too cold.
- Continue to eat your meals on time and make sure dinner is before sunset.
- Use cooling spices such as coriander, cardamom, fennel, dill, mint neem, rose, turmeric, and vanilla in your cooking.
- Amalaki is a wonderful antioxidant and anti-inflammatory herb and helps to reduce pitta. In the evening, you can take ½ tsp of amalaki mixed in some water ½ -1 hour after dinner to eliminate excess pitta from the body.
- Use cooling essential oils such as peppermint, sandalwood, rose, jasmine, and floral scents.
- Listen to ocean sounds at night to help you get a better night’s sleep; and sleep on your right side so that your lunar breath cycle will be activated, keeping your body cooler.
And here’s a cooling tonic to keep you refreshed as you enjoy the Sunshine
Grapefruit Lemon Balm Tonic (makes approximately 8 servings)
- 3 cups water
- 2 tsp coriander seeds
- one 6-inch lemongrass stalk, sliced thin
- 3 tbsp dried lemon balm
- juice of 4 grapefruits
In a small saucepan over medium-high heat, combine the water, coriander and lemongrass. Bring to a boil, cover and immediately turn the heat down to low. Simmer for about 10 minutes. Turn off the heat and stir in the lemon balm. Let the herbs steep for about 10 minutes and then strain the infusion through a fine-mesh sieve into a 1-quart mason jar, discarding the solids.
Squeeze the grapefruit juice in the infusion. If you’re not serving the drink immediately, seal the jar tightly and put in the fridge. It will keep fresh in the fridge for up to 3 days.
Serve slightly cold and enjoy.