Blue Lotus Ayurveda Newsletter

Seasonal Routine for Spring

April 2005

In spring, there is a predominance of kapha dosha in the atmosphere. The warmth of spring starts melting the accumulated snow from winter. Likewise, accumulated kapha starts liquefying and running out of the body. This is why people tend to get spring colds. At the same time, booming flowers shed their pollen, which can also aggravate kapha types or people with accumulated kapha, creating hay fever and allergies.

As usual, the following are general recommendations and people with a specific Ayurvedic regime should follow their practitioner's advice.

Daily Routine

In spring it is advisable to get up early and go out for a walk. After brushing the teeth and scraping the tongue, it is good to rub sesame or sunflower oil all over the body and take a warm shower. Yoga asanas to soothe kapha can follow, such as the sun salutation, bridge, boat, bow, locust, camel, cobra, lion, and cat poses, as well as spinal twists. Simple pranayama may follow the yoga session before meditation, which is good to practice on a regular basis, regardless of the season.

Good types of exercise for this season are hiking, walking and light weightlifting, as well as other more vigorous forms that help to burn kapha. Even though spring feels warmer as the days go by, it is not advised to start swimming until the weather gets hot, as in summer.

Naps aggravate kapha and slow digestion, so they should be avoided. As the days get longer and the activity increases, staying up later than usual is okay, but never in excess. Nighttime in spring is usually cool, so remember to stay warm and dry, and avoid sudden changes in temperature, as well as air-conditioned places.

Seasonal Diet

To prevent kapha from increasing, during this season it is best to avoid heavy, oily foods and to minimize the intake of sour, salty, and sweet tastes. One should eat more foods with bitter, pungent, and astringent tastes. Dairy products should also be avoided, with the exception of small amounts of ghee. If you follow a non-vegetarian diet, stay away from beef and other red meat, lamb, pork, duck, tuna, and seafood. Chicken, turkey, fish, and eggs are better choices.

Grains and fruits that aggravate kapha and should be avoided as much as possible are: wheat, brown and white rice (except for basmati), urud dal, bleached flour, white bread, most forms of pasta, avocados, coconut, melons, cucumbers, bananas, sweet potatoes, pumpkin, and squash. Good grains for this season are: amaranth, corn, millet, tapioca, barley, rye, oat bran, and buckwheat. Legumes such as garbanzo and pinto beans, red lentils, and split peas help decrease kapha dosha.

The best fruits are: apples, peaches, berries, cherries, red or dark grapes, apricots, and raisins. And the best vegetables for kapha are, amongst others, artichokes, carrots, asparagus, spinach, okra, leafy greens, radish, and beets.

Ginger cinnamon tea with honey is a good beverage to pacify kapha. Most sweeteners aggravate kapha, but honey and molasses in small amounts are okay. Please note that honey should never be cooked, as it becomes toxic and clogs the nadis (subtle channels). It should be added to the tea when it has cooled down a bit. Also, because there have been reports of botulism associated with honey, it is important to make sure that it is totally organic and raw. Kapha types or people with accumulated kapha should drink a cup of hot water with a teaspoon of raw honey to eliminate excessive kapha and ama (toxic food byproducts).

Large, heavy meals should be avoided. It is best to have three small, light meals and stay away from cold drinks and ice cream. Digestive Ayurvedic wines, such as asavas or draksha, can be taken to improve digestion.

Spring and Rejuvenation

Doesn't it feel like spring is the real beginning of the year, when birth and rebirth are in the atmosphere and everything in nature starts sprouting and blooming?

It is a great time to enjoy nature, start a flower or vegetable garden, as well as to cleanse and rejuvenate with Ayurvedic therapies and an individualized regime to prevent health issues as the year goes on and the seasons change.

Spring is the best time to do a week-long panchakarma to remove all the excess kapha and ama (toxic food byproducts), as well as all the stagnation from winter, and prevent health problems for the rest of the year.

As spring moves into summer, and the days get hotter, pitta starts to increase. So, pitta types or people with a pitta imbalance can avoid further aggravation in the summer by doing panchakarma in the spring as well.

Information on Panchakarma
 

Things to Do in Spring

• Eat a kapha pacifying diet
• Eat light, easily digestible meals
• Eat bitter, pungent & astringent foods
• Drink warming teas, such as ginger, cinnamon, dandelion
• Use raw honey as a sweetener
• Do daily yoga, pranayama & meditation
• Keep warm and dry
• Do daily nasya (nasal administration)
• Slowly increase your activity
• Fast one day a week

Things to Avoid in Spring

• Kapha increasing food
• Fatty, fried foods
• Heavy breakfast
• All heavy foods
• Cold or iced drinks
• Snacking between meals
• Cold drafts and air conditioning
• Exposure to dirt, dust and pollen
• Daytime naps

Yoga & Mantra for Healing

April 16, 9 a.m. - 2 p.m.
Blue Lotus Ayurveda Center - School Facility
$50/person (lunch included). Pre registration Required.

This workshop will focus on some of the subtle aspects of a yogic routine, such as yoga postures, pranayama (breathing techniques), and mantra repetition to promote overall health, clarity, and peace of mind.

More Information

Ayurvedic Herbology

May 14, 9 a.m. - 2 p.m.
Blue Lotus Ayurveda Center - School Facility
$50/person (lunch included). Pre registration required.

This workshop will focus on the Ayurvedic energetic approach to Eastern and Western herbs, as well as some of their common uses. Learn how Ayurveda views herbal properties and qualities, and explore the main methods of herbal preparation, formulation and administration of herbs from an Ayurvedic perspective.

To Register

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Contact Information

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(828) 713-4266
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