Ayurvedic tips and tricks for fostering a calm and cool summer season
By: Chloe Chaput (Reiki Practitioner and Clinical Ayurvedic Specialist).
In Ayurveda, balance is received by attuning to the rhythms of nature. As the seasons ebb and flow, so should our daily habits, routines and dietary choices.
We are currently in the summer season, which is dominated by the fire element. Fire carries the qualities of hot, sharp, flowing and penetrating. Sounds INTENSE, right?
This season increases all of these qualities in our bodies and minds.
- Too much heat in the body results in burning indigestion, loose stools, diarrhea or alternating constipation and diarrhea, dry, irritated eyes, irritability, mood swings and ultimately- BURN OUT fatigue.
- But not to worry if you’re feeling some INTENSITY rising. Ayurvedic principles can support you to regain your ‘calm, cool and collected’ self during these heated and hectic months.
The golden rule of healing in Ayurveda is like increases like and opposites decrease. So with the fire element dominating the external environment, we will want to increase the qualities of the water and earth elements through each of our five senses. The combined qualities of earth and water elements are cool, moist and stable.
Key guidelines for you and the entire family, make time for relaxation, ground your energy, hydrate appropriately, and cool the blood and the mind.
- Make space on your busy calendar for relaxation; evening baths, herbal foot soaks, light reading, meditating, restorative yoga, and self-oil body massage are lovely ways to calm and ground your energy in the evenings to restore for the long heated day to follow.
- Naturally, you will crave more light foods and small meals as our digestive fire (or Agni) disperses throughout the body to help keep it cool. Favour foods that are Sweet, Bitter and Astringent in taste as these are most balancing to the fire element. Think bitter greens, fresh, sweet (not sour) fruits, licorice, rose, lemon balm or raspberry leaf teas.
- Drink room temperature water (never cold) infused with mint or lime to keep hydrated and cool throughout the day. Cold water disrupts the body’s digestive and other physiological processes as the body has to re-direct energy to warm the water up before cells can receive it. Adding cooling herbs and less sour citrus cools the energetics of the water while enabling the body to receive hydration immediately upon drinking!
Try this simple and delicious blood-cooling red grape elixir in the afternoons to cool your blood and mind throughout the summer season.
If you’d like to learn more, I will be doing an online free class, and please email me.
If you’re unsure which of these options would be best for you, reach out to me at firstname.lastname@example.org, and we can work together to find the best solution.
As always, I’m here to support you and your family, Don’t hesitate to reach out if you have any questions about how Ayurveda can help you.
I wish you excellent health and a great summer!
Cardamom-Ginger Grape Elixir
This elixir both cleanses and nourishes the blood. Grapes are, in Ayurveda, “King among fruits.” This fruit (the red ones) has the ability to nourish the rasa dhatu while cooling the rakta dhatu, which makes it an ideal rejuvenator for the blood. The addition of digestive spices brings a cleansing bonus to the upper digestive tract. Enjoy this juice often in hot weather, around the menstrual cycle, or to balance too much heating food from the day before. Try this instead of afternoon coffee (which will heat and dry the body’s tissues/dhatus). It also supports healthy, glowing skin!
- 2 cups red seedless grapes
- 1/2 cup water
- 1/4 tsp cardamom
- 1 tsp ground ginger
- Lime wedges for garnish
Soak the grapes in cool water for 5 minutes, then drain and rinse. Add the grapes, water, cardamom and ginger to a blender and blend on high for 1 minute, until smooth.
Strain through a metal sieve into tall glasses, using the back of a large spoon to press the juice through. Alternatively, enjoy smoothie-style without straining. Serve with a lime wedge.
(Recipe from The Everyday Ayurveda Guide to Self Care by Kate O’Donnell)