The fire season: 5 tips to get through the season without creating imbalances

Ayurveda, a thousand-year-old science founded in India, uses the logic of the elements of nature to deal with the imbalances causing illness and disease.

Ayurveda aims first and foremost for a better knowledge of itself and its own needs as well as prevention. The 5 elements of nature are space, air, fire, water and earth. We enter the Pitta season which is fire, and of which the sun is naturally stronger and warms us up. As a North American, our summer is very short and it is normal to want to make the most out of the long awaited rays! Excess Pitta (fire) can however cause inflammatory problems, gastric burns or reflux, diarrhea, acne, etc. On the psychological level, an excess of fire will make you irritable, impatient, and even angry.

Whichever your doshas (categories of elements most present in you), one must make sure not to accumulate an excess of Pitta. Excess Pitta will be drying for Vata types, will melt mucous for Kapha types creating congestion and other problems and will be even more devastating to the Pitta types who already have a strong fire element in them. In short, avoiding an excess of Pitta is good for all! Let’s see how to enjoy the summer without accumulating an excess of fire.

 

1. Avoid sun exposure between 10:00 am and 2:00 pm.

Dermatologists have been saying this for years, these hours of exposure to the sun are the most dangerous. These are also the hours during which you will accumulate the most fire.

2. Eat your big meal of the day at lunch time

Pitta is the dosha that needs protein the most to be satisfied. In addition, your digestive fire is at its strongest at lunch time and your food will be more easily digested and processed. Taking time to eat a good balanced meal at lunch will help pacify Pitta.

3. Eat Greenery
Aside from spinach, green leafy vegetables are excellent for the season. But do not overdo raw foods that will affect your digestive power. Rather steamed, cooked or stewed greens.

4. Hydrate yourself without freezing your digestive fire
Drink especially fresh water or juice. Coconut water is also excellent during the summer season. But watch out for the ice cubes! They kill the digestive fire. It is best to drink at room temperature or slightly cooler if the days are very hot.

5. Avoid intense exercise at noon time
It is best to exercise early in the morning before 10:00 am or exercise more moderately after supper. Running or practicing during lunch time during the summer will certainly raise your fire level.

 

WATERMELON REFRESHING BEVERAGE RECIPE 

(source: The Everyday Ayurveda Cookbook, Kate O’Donnell)

Watermelon is hydrating, refreshing and delicious. However, it does not digest well with other foods. It is therefore best to drink this refreshing drink one hour before another meal or two hours after.

Ingredients:

4 cups of watermelon, cantaloupe or honeydew melon (having removed the seeds)

4 large mint or basil leaves

1 pinch of ginger powder (optional)

Lime juice

1/4 – 1/2 cup water

Basil or mint leaves and lime wedge to decorate

Place the watermelon, basil or mint leaves, ginger powder and lime juice in a blender. Add the water. Mix at high intensity until the leaves are well crushed.

Serve in 4 glasses and garnish with basil or mint leaves and lime.

Have a good summer!

By Jessica Charron

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