Hello all, in this Blog Post I would like to talk about enjoying the Autumn season based on Ayurvedic principles.
According to Ayurveda, seasons are divided based on Doshas.
- Summer is a typical Pitta or fire (hot and dry) related season.
- Autumn is a typical Vata or air (dry, cold, light) related season.
- Spring is a combination of Kapha or water/earth (humid, damp, cold) and Pitta or fire (hot and dry).
- And lastly Winter is a combination of Vata or air (dry, cold, light) and Kapha or water/earth (cold, humid, damp).
Autumn is the period of the year when Vata is predominant not only in the atmosphere and environment but also in our bodies. The weather is generally light, dry, cold, windy, rough and empty. During this time of the year one will start experiencing more dryness, coldness, lightness which may translate into changes with sleep patterns, body aches and pains especially aggravation of imbalances like arthritis. This is also the season when breathing ailments like asthma may become more aggravated. One may also experience dry light stools leading to constipation.
During autumn season the main aim is to alleviate dryness, coldness and lightness from the body.
Autumn is also a junction of two seasons – summer and winter. And at a seasonal junction, Ayurveda highly recommends a cleanse of the body, mind and emotions.
Autumn is a very good time to perform a small cleansing cure at home. A one week de-tox program at home will prepare you for the winter ahead.
* Start your home de-tox by drinking an Ayurvedic based ginger and lemon tea every day till 4pm in the afternoon. I would recommend Ayurveda Pura’s Ginger and Lemon Zest Tea. Click Here to Buy
* Drink plenty of warm water throughout the day.
* Take Triphala every night before bedtime. It is a corner stone herb in Ayurveda that not only helps to balance all the Doshas but also helps to cleanse the bowels and stimulates the digestive fire. Click here to Buy.
* Prepare Kitchari (combination of rice, yellow split mung beans along with spices and herbs like turmeric, cumin, mustard etc) and have this as often as possible. This will help to nourish all the tissues and yet stimulate the digestive fire. Click Here For Recipe
* Plenty of vegetable soup during this period will help to remove that excess dryness and coldness.
* Avoid cold, dry, light and raw foods.
* Concentrate on light, warm slightly spicy and nourishing foods.
* Regular foot, face or head massages for the week will help to cleanse and nourish various sensory functions and organs.
Following the above home cleanse one could follow various guidelines for Autumn as listed below:
Herbs and Herbal Remedies:
Triphala: This is a good herbal combination for all three Doshas. It is rejuvenating and strengthening for Vata, Pitta and Kapha. This also helps to cleanse the colon and hence works towards detoxification. Click Here to Buy
Turmeric: This is a great herb during Auutmn time especially for any one suffering from joint and bone problems as it has very good anti inflammatory and blood cleansing effects. Click Here to Buy
Ashwagandha: It is a very good herb for calming the nervous system and also strengthening it. This herb also helps to enhance stability and strength during Yoga practice. Click Here to Buy
Tulsi: Also known as Holy Basil, this herb helps to strengthen and stimulate the respiratory system hence preventing any symptoms of Asthma or breathing difficulties during autumn season. Click Here to Buy
Diet and Nutrition:
- As autumn is a cold and dry season, one should avoid foods and drinks that may increase this coldness and dryness.
- One should concentrate on warm and nourishing foods.
- Avoid cold salads especially towards evening.
- One must aim at eating warm freshly cooked foods as much as possible.
- Avoid black tea and coffee towards evening as they increase Vata or restlessness in body and may lead to sleep disturbances.
- To ensure a good night’s sleep one could take Chyawanprash in warm milk every night. Chyawanprash (also called as the Ayurvedic jam, made of Indian gooseberries along with other herbs and spices) is known for its anti oxidant, immune boosting properties. Click Here to Buy
- Herbal teas which contain ginger, fennel, cinnamon etc are best for this season.
- Warm thick soups are best.
- Include Ghee or clarified butter in your diet as this is quite high in proteins and helps to nourish the nervous system. Click Here to Buy
- Fasting is generally not recommended during autumn as it has quite a dry and light effect.
Ayurvedic Massage and Bodywork Therapy:
- Autumn is the best time to receive massages.
- Vata is the Dosha that requires maximum oil therapy as it’s quite dry, light and cold.
- Every morning give yourself a quick five minute massage with warm sesame oil and then go in for a shower.
- One can also use Dosha oils for specific Dosha Body Types. These oils are usually sesame seed oil based.
- This is the best time for all kinds of Ayurvedic oil therapies like Shirodhara, Shirobhyanga, Ayurvedic Foot Massage, Abhyanga, Ayurvedic Face Massage. Click here to see Ayurveda Pura’s Seasonal Offers and treatments.
- Good yoga positions for autumn season are as follows:
- Forward bend
- Backward bend
- Half spinal twist
- Sun salutations
- Shoulder stand
- Breathing exercises like alternate nostril breathing , cleansing breath exercise and breath of fire help to warm up the body and stimulate the immune system.
- Sun Salutations are best for this season as they help to warm up the body and help to stimulate the immune system.
Daily Lifestyle and Routine:
- Ayurvedic Oil Pulling is the best daily routine for autumn season. This technique helps to get rid of any dryness from the body, nourishes the tissues and systems and stimulates the immune system.
- Upon waking up and on empty stomach, first thing in the morning, take some warmed up sesame seed oil in the mouth. Approximately 2 table spoons should suffice. Please remember the oil needs to be warm or hot, never cold. Apply the mouth wash action for 30 seconds. Then hold the oil in the mouth for next 30 seconds. Repeat this technique for approximately 2 minutes. This process helps to strengthen and nourish the mouth and teeth. It also helps to draw out all toxins from the digestive tract. After brushing your teeth, have a cup of hot Ginger and Lemon Zest Tea. Click Here to Buy
- Regular walks in the open nature help the body to absorb in the much needed oxygen and prana. A 15 minute walk every day should help.