Happy Summer!!! Today the season of heat, long days of bright sun, vibrant energy and transformation has officially started - so the sun is the king!!! In Ayurveda there is a law which states that 'like increases like'. When similar qualities come together, their quantitative expression increases. Pitta is directly inline with the qualities of the summer such as hot, light, mobile, sharp and oily this dosha can easily be thrown off balance. So aggravated pitta in the body or in the mind is a common condition during that season. Below are some signs of pitta imbalance to spot it in time, followed by a list of tips to passivate pitta again.
In my previous article ‘the three doshas in Ayurveda' I already gave a brief description about pitta, however here again a quick recap.
When in balance: intelligence, alertness, good digestion, good power of comprehension and contentment
When out of balance in the mind: jealousy, competitiveness, egoism, envy, easily agitated, lack of compassion
When out of balance in the body: acne, acid stomach, premature greying/ balding, skin rashes, diarrhea, achy hot eyes, skin inflammation, migraines
Pitta Balancing Tips
Chose sweet, cool, refreshing, bitter or astringent foods over pungent, salty & sour (try not to overindulge on cayenne, garlic, dry ginger, mustard seeds, caffeine, alcohol & yeast containing foods)
If you want to have your occasional alcoholic drink then chose beer or white wine
Drink lots of cool drinks such as (coconut) water, pomegranate juice, aloe vera juice. Ayurveda stresses that it shouldn’t be too cold as this distinguishes the digestive fire. So prefer room temperature drinks. If you still want your tea go for mint, chamomile, fennel, liquorice or dandelion tea
Increase sweet tastes & bitter, astringent foods such as milk, ghee & coconut oil. take time to relax,
Play, listen to music, meditate, go for walks in the nature
Try not to directly be exposed to the sun light
Try not to skip meals
Abhyanga (self massage) once a week with coconut oil
Exercise: try to exercise early in the morning & avoid mid-day exercise, when the sun is at its highest. If early morning is not an option, early evening it is!
Fruits: apples, avocados, berries, cherries, coconut, cranberries, grapes, mangoes, limes, melons, pears, pineapples, plums, pomegranates, prunes, grapes, limes, cherries, melons
Vegetables: Artichokes, asparagus, beet greens, broccoli, brussel sprouts, cabbage, cauliflower, celery, chard, collard greens, cucumbers, green beans, kale, lettuce, okra, potatoes, watercress, zucchini
Grains: barley, (basmati) rice, wheat, quinoa & oats
Spices: corinader, dill, aniseed, turmeric, basil, fresh ginger, cinnamon, fennel, cilantro & cardamon
Nuts: almonds & coconuts
Animal products: white poultry, freshwater fish, shrimp
Dairy: if you can easily digest it then use milk, butter and ghee in small amounts otherwise go for almond or rice milk
Oils: high-quality olive, sunflower, coconut oil or ghee. Try to avoid sesame, corn and almond oil
Cool down, cool down, cool down!!! Stay cool and grounded. Focus on cooling foods such as greens and cold pressed juices. Eat cool, wholesome foods and complement your diet with extra fruits and vegetables. Stack up on Aloe Vera juice and wheat grass. Both are excellent remedies to cool down your fire.