Olea Olivedic

SMITA DAYA, THE AYURVEDIC CHEF

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Here are some simple tips to find balance

You can put them into practice today and enjoy peace and well being all summer long. In Ayurveda (“the science of life”), summertime is the season of pitta. Pitta is made from the elements of fire and water and found in hot and humid climates. This means the operating pitta dosha in our physiological systems (which governs heat and water in our body) has a tendency to be overactive. This intensity of heat affects our metabolism and digestion and can cause rashes and other skin problems. It can even affect our state of mind.


  • Drink cool liquids like water, mint tea, or lassies. Avoid ice cold drinks and carbonated beverages because they’ll interfere with digestion. Your digestive system converts food into energy through heat. When your digestive fires are strong, you are able to process your food and assimilate. Ice cold drinks can put your fires out and weaken your digestion.
     
  • Avoid spicy and salty foods, which can dehydrate you during this time. Stay away from alcohol, coffee, tomatoes, garlic, and onions when you can. These all have a heating effect on the body and will increase pitta. Increase sweet tastes (in natural foods and not processed) and bitter, astringent foods such as milk and ghee. Sweet, ripe fruits like avocados, cherries, plums, grapes, pineapples, peaches, and mangos are perfect. Incorporate cilantro, mint, cardamom, and fennel whenever you can. Vegetables such as asparagus, cucumbers, sweet potatoes, broccoli, green leafy vegetables, zucchini, and green beans are all good, too. Enjoy salads regularly; especially mid-day when the sun is strong and the digestive fires are high.
     
  • Avoid mid-day exercise and exposure to hot sun. The best time for exercise is the early morning. A good second choice is early evening. Go for a walk before bed—the moonlight is especially soothing and cooling for pitta dosha. Avoid competitive sports, which can aggravate pitta. Slow down and enjoy your days! Choose exercise that is more leisurely, like walking, hiking, and getting in the water to cool off. Cool showers are a great way to cool off instantly and give your skin a great glow.
     
  • Meditate, listen to music, go to your favorite outdoor spot, and just allow yourself to be. Summertime is the perfect time to enjoy the outdoors and rejuvenate. Let go of over-working and take time play and soak in all the benefits of being in nature.
     

With these tips you can let your powerful Pitta take over for the last few months of summer—be brave and bold, and unleash the magic!