Ayurveda teaches us that the transition between seasons is always a strain on our health, particularly the transition we are going through now and we need to be particularly vigilant as our bodies adjust. If we pay attention we may notice that more people get sick at the transition between seasons, particularly winter to spring and summer to autumn.
For those of us with a lot of Vata in our constitution we can breathe a sigh of relief as we leave Vata season behind us. If we have not looked after ourselves during Vata season we may feel a strong effect of this now with anxiety, dizziness, restlessness and other nervous system strains. Take care to address these whilst being mindful of the season we are now in.
Damp, heavy, cold, three of the strongest qualities of Kapha. We only need to step outside to feel these. Those of us with a predominance of Kapha dosha or those with Kapha imbalance may be feeling the effects of heaviness, lethargy, congestion and a general stuck in the mud kind of feeling.
The more we begin to pay attention to the influence of the particular dosha which dominates the day, season, time of month or time of life, the more able we are to find our own unique balance.
Kapha is mother earth personified – sturdy, grounded, solid and reliable. Kapha is represented in the body as our body mass, our structure. Kapha is also water element and governs the fluids and fat of the body, hence all the mucus around at this time of year! Its seat is primarily the chest, also the throat, sinus, head, stomach and secretions of the body. Ever wonder why there are so many headaches, sinus and chest infections and tummy bugs at this time of year? Kapha is why. Because childhood is the Kapha time of life, this is the reason children seem to be forever producing mucus!
Kapha season is a time to cleanse excess mucus from the stomach, sinus passages and lymphatic system.
Invigorating massages with Ayurvedic oils to stimulate the lymphatic system and release congestion in pockets in the body are needed. We all store emotions and experiences in the body, it builds up over time and can create tension or tightness or tenderness. Those predominantly Kapha dosha are prone to storing more due to their nature. This is another reason why massage is important at this time of year.
Kapha season is a time to for cleansing and eating detoxifying foods. Instead of cleansing and detoxing in January, it is best to wait until this time of year when the body is ready for it. Pungent, bitter, astringent tastes are those that pacify Kapha. Warm freshly cooked foods that are light and also spiced. Spices such as ginger, cinnamon, cumin, black pepper, chili, turmeric are all good for pacifying Kapha. Beets, bitter greens, millet, buckwheat, ghee are all good for pacifying Kapha and minimizing the build up of mucus in the body. You may notice your body craving these types of foods and also foods that are in season right now. We also need to pay attention to our own constitution, our time of life and the time of day when we are considering our lifestyle and dietary choices.
Kapha time of day is 6-10am and 6-10pm. So it is best to rise early before the heaviness of Kapha makes rising difficult. On rising practice asana, pranayama and meditation. This does not need to take excess time and be a complex process, as little as 30 minutes simple practice regularly will bring huge benefit.
If you tend towards sinus congestion or sinus issues (this includes ears and throat too) now is the time to book in for a nasya course. Don’t wait until infections arise or you are in pain.
Just as we can see nature constantly changing, we are too. We are all constantly in a flux and a flow by our very nature. When we align ourselves with the rhythms of nature we can move and flow with it. Our bodies, our inner wisdom will guide us; we will learn to trust them. It is important to embrace the wonderful qualities of our nature while taking care to manage the not so wonderful ones.