Ayurvedic Self Care for Spring Szn
The saying “April showers bring May flowers” used to make me very happy as a kid because I used to think yes! flowers galore will be in full bloom in time for my birthday, as if that was Mother Nature’s very special gift just for me (such a Taurus thing to think). 13 days into April & me being me, the whole non-stop showers thing has gotten way less cute but I get it, it’s important.
Spring= Kapha Season
Despite the endless rain, one thing we know for sure is that Spring (also known as Basant in India) graced us with her presence on March 20th this year and as the cold of winter melted away, naturally the Earth became more heavy with moisture and softness. This shift can be credited to the arrival of increased Kapha in the atmosphere which lasts from March- early June. Kapha dosha is the combination of Earth and Water element, it is responsible for growth,nourishment, lubrication,stability and structure hence why we need that rain to help build structure for growth of all our plants, trees and food!
The properties of Kapha dosha are cold, wet, heavy, dull, slow,sticky, cloudy, liquid, smooth/slimy, soft/hard (like mud which can be both),dense, gross (not subtle). When Kapha dosha is in balance I like to think of it as ghee, it provides things like nourishment, love, generosity, contentment, forgiveness.
What may feel more obvious right now is the imbalanced properties or what happens when Kapha is in excess if you did not create a stable base for your immunity and body during Winter. This can show up as increased lethargy, stagnation/inertia, feeling depressed/ low, foggy mind,poor digestion, increased mucus and respiratory ailments,allergies, feeling unmotivated, attachment or greed, feeling uninspired, tendency to be sleepy after eating.
WTF do I eat then?!
Diet and lifestyle play a very big part in our well-being, understanding how we contribute to our ailments and how to counterbalance is the key to making friends with nature and our bodies. In Ayurveda we use the opposite as medicine and remember that like increases like. So if you are anything like me and you tend to indulge in treats or comfort foods when the weather is gloomy, you are increasing the Kapha in the body, mind and spirit. To help alleviate Kapha dosha it is recommended to eat foods that are bitter, astringent and pungent and increase more vigorous physical activities ( Vinayasa yoga, sun salutations,kapalabati + bhastrika pranayam,dance, jogging/running or other cardio pumping activities and of course, more sex!).
It is best to decrease and limit the intake of foods that are cold, creamy, sweet, oily or heavy as they increase Kapha production in the body. Banyan Botanicals always has these great little guides to help understand the doshic diets and get a visual reference for the types of foods to look out for when we are grocery shopping. Ayurveda always recommends eating in season for this reason because Mother Nature will naturally provide the right foods to balance the excess dosha.
Keeping it light
In my Winter Solstice workshop I had encouraged us to take deep rest and really contemplate and meditate on the seeds we wanted to plant when Spring arrives. This idea was to create intention for this season because I find we wait sooooooo long for Spring to unfold and when it finally comes our time with her is so brief and precious, just like the cherry blossoms. If you have yet to create some schemes and dreams for yourself, the upcoming New Moon this weekend is the perfect time to sit in ritual with yourself and bring forth your intentions. You can use this self care + intention setting helper which includes my top Ayurveda rituals for Spring.
Remember, Spring is the time where nature is making love, pollinating the flowers, things are becoming fluid, emerging, the birds are singing again, the sun finds its way to warm our bones and our hearts so be playful, keep it light and keep shit flowin’ + growin’.
xo Be well,