The chilly months of winter and those rainy days of spring are over! Most of us look forward to summer—the season of sunshine, flowers, and vacation time. Understanding we all experience summer very differently depending on our Ayurvedic constitution (mind-body type). So, if you’re a Vata type who often feels cold, summer’s warmth can bring welcome relief! But if you’re a bright, fiery Pitta—or you currently have excess Pitta in your system—all that extra sunshine might leave you craving cooler days. And if you are Kapha... your disposition might be one of enjoying the warmth as long as you have a swimming pool close by.
Regardless of which dosha might be dominant .... we must always remember we are Tri-doshic, so even if we aren't Pitta dominant, we do have to be mindful of our fiery Pitta side because other things can also ramp up your Pitta in the summer months— think travel stress, hot weather, sunny beach days, spicy food choices, and BBQs, or even overworking. When your body is overheated, the mind becomes overheated and perpetuates emotional imbalance.
Interestingly, for some of us during the summer months, we tend to get irritable, short-tempered, and we lose our patience easily. This is all due to over-heating and are symptoms of Sadhaka Pitta, which is the aspect of Pitta that governs our emotions. Sadhaka Pitta is present in both our heart and our brain. So our overall balancing practices for Pitta, can be managed through things that have opposite qualities to the heating weather.
Let's keep these 4 easy, cooling Ayurvedic strategies in mind for your most stress-free summer yet.
1. Make Time for Downtime
Slowing down is one of the best things you can do to calm an overworked Pitta. Paradoxically, the time we spend daydreaming, meditating, journaling, and simply letting go can prove productive; big ideas and exciting new directions are born out of quiet reflection and rest and rejuvenation.
Spending time in nature is essential! Research shows that it lowers cortisol and improves people’s health just to take a walk in nature in cool, shady woods is really good. Also swimming—not so much in the middle of the day, but around sunrise or an hour or so after, or in the evening. It’s really cooling and takes some of the heat out of the system.
Taking time for "Self" also soothes the soul. All work and no play can leave Pitta types feeling especially irritable. Even taking just an Ayurvedic Staycation day or two can help you rediscover your bliss.
2. Follow a Pitta-Pacifying Eating Regime
According to Ayurveda, food is medicine. To cool down an overheated system, food is your first line of defense. So if you’re feeling a buildup of heat, then you need to calm your Pitta, which will also cool your emotions."
As much as possible, try to follow the Pitta-Pacifying Food Regime, favoring sweet, bitter, and astringent (light and dry, such as pomegranate) tastes and avoiding things that are sour, salty, and pungent (spicy). Sweet, juicy fruits are particularly helpful—and abundant—during the summer, as are foods like dairy (if you tolerate it) and coconut water. Sprinkling a bit of Organic Pitta Churna Cooling Spice Mix on meals is a tasty and easy way to help restore balance.
3. Sip Cooling Beverages
It’s important to stay hydrated during summer. Carry a bottle of fresh, purified water with you whenever possible (room temperature, no ice—as it can slow your digestion). Sip room-temperature Organic Cooling Pitta Tea between meals. Don't forget, Coconut water is also very cooling and the best thing for hydration plus balancing your electrolytes.
Try fresh zucchini juice, it’s very cooling and fresh! It can take the heat out of the skin if one is feeling flushed, hot, and agitated. It cools the liver-blood system down faster than anything. Juicing one zucchini will yield about a cup of juice; drink it on an empty stomach and enjoy.
Triphala, a gentle colon cleanser, can be helpful for emotional health as well. Regular, everyday elimination through the colon is important to help keep Pitta from building up, mentally and physically.
4. Have a Cooling Evening Routine
Just as too much time in the sun can make you overheat, too much screen time at night can disrupt both Pitta and Vata dosha and lead to disturbed sleep.
As a reminder, when daylight fades, the body’s biological clock triggers the release of melatonin and we should honor the natural cycles to perpetuate deep rest. Late nights, evening computer and cell-phone use, and sleeping late all alter this natural pattern of melatonin secretion.
Try to wind down naturally—ideally before 10 p.m., when Pitta’s evening cycle kicks in. Take a gentle evening stroll and enjoy the cool air and colors of the sunset. No Power Yoga after 6 pm, another option would be a Yin Class to move you into the evening.
Spritz your face with Organic Rose Water, or dab some sandalwood and jasmine on your wrists for a cooling effect. Better yet, keep some roses from the garden by your bedside for natural aromatherapy. Right before bed, massage the soles of your feet with fractionated Coconut oil infused with lavender or patchouli to promote relaxation, deeper sleep—and a great start to your next summer day!
Ready to find out more?
Want to find out your dosha and learn how to find balance, what foods work best for you, what is your best time to workout, work and just enjoy your life to the fullest....