Ayurvedic Tips for Spring

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Spring.  The season of Kapha.  It’s cool.  It’s wet.  It’s heavy.

We also have a tendency to be heavy, moist, and cool (think: mucus and mud) during the spring.  How do we keep ourselves healthy in the transition from winter to spring, the transition from dry, cold, and unstable to wet, cool, and stable?

#1.  Know yourself.  What are your personal weaknesses and tendencies?  Where are you most likely to go out of balance and how do you catch it before it happens?  Allergies, colds, and depression are often Kapha imbalances.

#2.  Balance the moist, heavy, and cool qualities of spring by applying opposites.
Moist with drying.
Heavy with light.
Cool with warm.

Simple spring tips:

Eat seasonally.  Spring foods are naturally light, dry, and bitter (more uplifting). Spring foods are naturally more cleansing, so choose a seasonal diet of spring greens and tender roots.  This naturally counters the build up of excess that happens during the more nourishing, heavy diet of winter.  Other spring treats include mineral rich herbs/teas, and lighter, warm foods like brothy soups.

Movement. Now is the time, if you’re not already, to get outside.  Reconnect with the sun (it’s warm and bright and cheery) and nature is bursting forth with life (more uplifting gifts from nature).  This is the time of year for more vigorous movement to sweat off the build up of winter’s excess and move out excess fluid in the body and joints.  It’s a time to reset the system for the juicy, busy outward energy of spring and summer.

Start your day with a mug of hot water.  This is warming and wakes up the digestive system which can also be a bit sluggish and slow in Kapha season.  Add ginger for an extra kick of warmth, lemon for cleansing, and honey to help clear mucus.  A happy note: be mindful, and honest, but spring and Kapha body types may be able to enjoy a mug of coffee to jump start the day.

–You may find that your skin needs less oil in the spring, so use a lighter coating of oil with your daily massage (almond, olive, and sunflower oils may be better spring options).  You may find you need less and less oil.  You may find that daily dry brushing is a lovely practice.  This is simply brushing your skin with a body brush toward the heart to slough off dead skin and wake up the blood and lymph systems.  This kicks up immunity, which can be a bit sluggish coming off of winter’s cold into spring’s heaviness.  Watch out for stagnation, accumulation, and sluggishness in your body and mind.  Keep yourself uplifted and moving!!

–Use more spices with a kick like pepper and ginger, and less salt (it’s water hoarding).  Black pepper, ginger, and pippali (long pepper) is a great formula for Kapha/spring.

–Try not to oversleep in the mornings, this is not helpful and actually induces more of the heavy, stagnating qualities of kapha.

–You may find you need extra support to get rid of winter’s excess that is weighing on you: a spring cleanse will help get rid of extra accumulation.  There are lots of options from a simple elimination of the ‘baddies’ (processed foods, sugars, white flour, etc), to a three day kitchari cleanse, a soup and broth cleanse, or maybe you could use a more intense type of cleanse.  Whereas autumn was about cleansing to rejuvenate, spring is about cleansing to reset, so this MAY (or may NOT) be a time for a deeper cleansing practice.  Please know your constitution and goals when cleansing/de-ama-ing.  If you need guidance, don’t hesitate to contact me.

Think uplifting and joyful practices for spring.  Dig yourself out of the mud and leap.  Keep your body and mind moving.  Laugh.  Sweat.  Eat well (not too much, mostly plants, especially in the spring).

Feel free to contact me with follow up questions!!

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