#COO Ambassadors:

A TASTE OF AYURVEDA WITH REGINA

Favorite Quote:

"In school you learn a lesson and then are given a test. In life you are given a test and it's up to you to learn the lesson"  - Anonymous

Favorite Yoga Pose:

Chaturanga Dandasana

 

Ayurveda, the study of the science of life, is an ancient healing practice with origins come from India. A more practical, accessible way to think about Ayurveda and living according to its philosophy is to approach it as living in harmony with the rhythms of nature. Its approach to balanced health is that of treating each person according to their unique psychological, emotional and physical condition.

Ayurveda emphasizes in its teachings that focus should be on practical, everyday tools that hone our abilities to “pick up on” signals from our environment. What we are surrounded with or what we choose to surround ourselves with, continuously informs us as to what is supportive and non-supportive. I am always encouraging people to go beyond just the elements of ether, air, fire, water and earth.  There is actually so much more to this ancient science.  It truly is a way of life and is everywhere in our lives and can be applied to so much in your life beyond diet and the five elements.

 

      THE DOSHAS The Doshas: Biological Humors

 

Vata + Pitta + Kapha

Our entire planet and all that exists within it are made up of five elements: Ether, Air, Fire, Water and Earth.  These elements combined make up the Ayurvedic Doshas- vata, pitta and kapha- biological humors that are constantly out of balance. The goal of Ayurveda and yoga is to create balance and harmony within the body, mind, and senses.

 

VATA:  Space+Air (MOVINGdry, light, hard, rough, cold), Fall and Winter

PITTA: Water+Fire (SPREADING  hot, sharp, penetrating, oily), Summer

KAPHA: Water+Earth (STRENGTH  heavy, cold, wet, hard, smooth), Spring

 

 

Summer in the Northern Hemisphere is between June (beginning with the Summer Solstice) and September (Fall Equinox).  Pitta season is characterized by being hot, often very humid, sticky and sweaty.  For some, this is a welcomed relief from the cold and dark of winter.  Some body types enjoy the heat and humidity while others may be absolutely miserable.  Those with an aversion to the cold who are predominantly vata dosha often love the warmth that summer brings.  Those with a particularly strong pitta dosha tend to loathe the heat and humidity of summer. 

For those of you with high pitta who are particularly ornery with the combo of high heat, humidity, excessive sweating and maybe more prone to breaking out, I’m offering up some food tips on how to keep pitta in check during the summer months.

A key concept in Ayurveda is like increases like.  In other words, the more of something you put into your body, the more it will increase that corresponding dosha, thus brining it out of balance.  In regards to pitta dosha, one does not want to bring more heat or fire into the body when pitta season is happening or when pitta is running high in the body.  You want to cool pitta down. 

 

INVITE IN MORE COOLING FOODS AND SPICES

As a rule, during summer pitta season, favor sweet, bitter and astringent foods. Astringent isn’t a normal part of the North American diet but is excellent for keeping cool.  Try foods like kale, collards and dandelion greens.

 

 

MY TOP FAVORITE PITTA COOLING FOODS:

Coconut

My number one favorite cooling food is coconut.  I love it and can’t stop singing its praises.  If you don’t like coconut well then I feel sorry for you.  If you are allergic then no worries, there are more foods and spices that are on offer.  Coconut in all forms is excellent for cooling pitta:

  • Coconut mana (melt the mana in a pan on very low heat and mix in organic carob powder to make liquid yumminess beyond your wildest dreams)
  • Coconut oil on everything including massaged into your skin (best lotion you will ever use)
  • Sugar-free Organic Coconut yogurt, shredded coconut mixed into your chia pudding or anything else you want to add it to
  • Coconut milk added to your DECAF coffee drinks (I know you all are cutting down on coffee so I don’t have to lecture you on that 

 

Aloe

Sugar free aloe beverages are excellent for cooling the body during pitta season.  Sugar free versions might be hard to find but if you are able to.

 

Cardamom, Cumin & Fennel Seed

You can't go wrong with these spices not only to cool pitta but also can aid in digestion.  Favor dishes that call for these spices to stay cool during the summer.

 

 OTHER FOODS, SPICES & BEVERAGES TO FAVOR:

 

Quinoa                                                            bananas

Basmati Rice                                                  Mangos

Sweet Potatoes                                              Avacado

Kale                                                                papaya

Arugula                                                          pineapple

Ginger ( powder)                                           Squashes

   Turmeric                                                               Sweet Berries

Cooked carrots                                              Cooked beets

Millet                                                              Gluten Free Oats

                                     Cardamom                                        Organic, grass fed, pastured whole milk

Clove                                                               Sweet apples

Cilantro                                                          Sweet berries

Fennel                                                            Coconut Water

Organic chicken                                             Organic Turkey

Organic Ghee

 

WHAT TO AVOID:

If like increases like then it’s important to keep the spicy, sour and excessively salty foods in moderation during pitta season.  These foods will only increase pitta dosha making symptoms like anger and skin breakouts worse.

 

Hot Peppers                                                   Chili

Tomatoes                                                       Garlic (raw)

Onion (raw)                                                   Shell Fish

Eggplant                                                         Bell Peppers

Peanuts                                                          Cashews

Yogurt                                                            Hard Cheeses

Fenugreek                                                      Coffee

Alcohol                                                            Non-organic Soy

Frozen Food                                                   Microwaved food

Corn (unless it is non-GMO)                                    Canned food

 

The key is to eat seasonally.  Favor what is featured in the produce aisle at the grocery store or farmer’s market.  Eating seasonally will ensure that you are living in accordance with nature’s rhythms but will also help keep pitta dosha in check.

 

 

Find Regina at: (@Wolfmedicinemagic)