In Ayurveda, there are six seasons instead of four: spring, early summer, late summer, fall, early winter, and late winter. The later summer season is called varsha ritu or “rainy season.” August and September mark this transition from summer to fall, from heat to coolness, from spring vegetables to late summer harvest. Seasons change and so should we. We should change our eating habits and our activities to be in tune with each season—especially when it comes to the foods we eat and the activities we enjoy.
Eating According to Season
Food has an essential role in keeping you healthy. For that reason it is very important that you adjust your eating in accordance with the seasons. In late summer, digestion slows down. Agni is low. As the weather starts to cool, eat more rice and barley—foods that are easy to digest. Salty and sour intake should also be increased during this time. Try a delicious juice of pomegranate mixed with honey and lime for a pitta-reducing treat.
Late Summer and the Doshas
During late summer, all doshas can go out of balance, especially vata and pitta. For that reason, Ayurveda recommends seasonal purification practices like Panchakarma, especially for this time of year. Pitta needs to be cooled down after the long hot summer. Vatas need to stay grounded and hydrated. Herbal teas like Tulsi (Holy Basil) make an ideal late summer drink, especially for vatas. You can spice up your Tulsi with cardamom, ginger or coriander seeds.
Regardless of your dosha, here are tips to help you with that transition from late summer to the early fall season:
5 Ayurvedic Tips For Late Summer
- Eat foods that are easily digestible, warm, and light. Barley, rice, and wheat are recommended. Tender coconut is a good pacifier for increased vata and pitta conditions.
- Cut back on leafy greens, uncooked vegetables, and salads. Increase sweet, sour, and salty foods.
- Drink room temperature water (instead of ice water) to keep Agni in balance; avoid ice cream.
- Consider taking an Ayurvedic liver formula daily—it will help support the cleansing of old pitta from the blood and liver.
- Take Triphala each night before bed to cleanse pitta gently from the small intestines.
If you can incorporate the above tips into in your daily routine, you’ll can enjoy a healthier fall season ahead. As the leaves begin to turn from green to gold and red, adjust your diet and activities accordingly. Be in tune in with nature and the seasons…the Ayurvedic way.