Updated: Mar 25
The snow is melting, the days are longer...nature is stirring. There is a sweetness to these early days of Spring. There is no rush. Here in the Northeast, it may even snow again. We can awaken slowly like bears coming out of hibernation.
This heavy, slow feeling can be attributed to what we call in Ayurveda, kapha dosha. Kapha dosha is dominant in the Spring and it is governed by the elements of earth and water. As the snow melts, the earth and water mix to make mud. Which may be exactly what we feel like we're moving through this time of year. Depending on our individual constitution, this can be soothing, or we may feel overly heavy, and literally stuck in the mud.
As kapha dosha accumulates in the body, swelling, congestion, weight gain, and sluggish digestion may occur. Mentally, we may also feel heavy, lethargic, or unmotivated.
Now is the perfect time to adjust your daily routines with lightening and warming practices to counter the cool, moist, heavy, and stable qualities of kapha. Changing habits can be challenging, especially if you have a lot of kapha in your constitution.
But as you make small adjustments, you may cultivate more clarity in both body and mind, helping you to see the direction that you truly want to move in.
It’s time to stoke the digestive fire and encourage the body’s natural cleansing.
Balancing Tips for Spring:
Wake with the sun.
Use a tongue scraper.
Drink warm water with lemon to start your day
Get moving! Exercise daily, preferably first thing in the morning. Get sweaty!
Eat a lighter breakfast than you did in the winter.
Do not eat when you’re not hungry. Avoid snacking.
Favor foods that are warm, light, and well spiced.
Practice dry-brushing your skin, follow with a light massage oil like almond, mustard, or safflower.
Use warming and invigorating essential oils such as lemon, bergamot, grapefruit, pine, tulsi, cinnamon, eucalyptus and peppermint.
Practice neti (nasal irrigation) Follow with oil in nostrils.
Asanas- flow sequences with rapid movement, postures that expand and open the chest such as ustrasana (camel pose), bhujangasana (cobra), and sarvangasana (bridge pose).
Pranayam (breathing practices) Clear stagnation with Breath of Fire.
Foods to Favor in the Spring:
Pungent spices, such as ginger, black pepper, cumin, cayenne pepper, lemon, and turmeric
Dry grains, such as barley, rye, corn, millet, quinoa, and buckwheat
Astringent fruits, such as apples, pears, berries, dried cherries, raisins, and prunes
Lean proteins, such as beans, lentils, and egg whites; white meat for non-vegetarians
Bitter vegetables, such as arugula, brussels sprouts, cabbage, broccoli, dandelion greens, and asparagus. All green juices.
Raw honey, in moderation
Foods to Reduce:
Sweet, heavy fruits
Sweeteners (except raw honey)
Highly processed foods