Sunday, 10 January 2016

Ayurveda and winter

Winter is a time for drawing in, reflecting.  Your body may tell you that you need more sleep and where practical, you should give in to this need.  Winter is also a time when your digestive fire (agni) is strong which means that you will feel hungrier and if you satisfy this hunger with nourishing foods, not junk foods or hard to digest foods, your immunity will be boosted (isn't nature wonderful, boosting our immunity in the coughs, colds and flu season).  
In Ayurvedic terms winter is kapha season and if kapha becomes unbalanced we can feel stagnant and uninspired. Pacify kapha with a diet of freshly cooked, warm and spicy foods. 

Avoid cold foods and cold drinks.  Sweet, sour and salty tastes will balance the body but also include some astringent, bitter and pungent foods.  Include vegetables such as carrots, onions, turnips, swede, spinach, kale, leeks, celeriac, and sweet potatoes.  Apples, pears are good to include. Lentils and beans except soya beans are fine for vegans and vegetarians. 

Vegetarians can also include eggs but reduce dairy which may lead to congestion.  If you eat meat, reduce red meat and eat chicken, turkey and fish, especially oily fish.  Grains that will pacify kapha include oats, barley and rice. Include plenty of warming spices such as ginger, mustard, cinnamon, pepper.  

In terms of your yoga practice an invigorating practice of Sun Salutations, flows, core work and twists and backbends is ideal to balance kapha.  

For Sun salutations and flows please see my 'Yoga Pose Gallery'-

Also, please see the yoga videos in my YouTube playlist-'Winter Wellness'-

Janet x

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