Wellness, Naturally: Balancing Kapha in Late Winter

Balancing Kapha - Art of Living Retreat Center


During the weeks before the advent of spring, kapha begins to awaken. Ayurveda teaches us that our bodies mimic what takes place in the ebb and flow of nature’s seasons. In late winter, we may find ourselves beginning to notice the qualities of kapha (earth & water) in ourselves that are abundant in the upcoming springtime.

The heavy, wet qualities of spring rain and melting snow are reflected in our bodies, and we may feel out of balance as we try to adjust to the new season. We’ve put together a few tips for making the most of this transitional time, so you can live your life feeling energized and empowered.

Understanding Kapha

This list offers a brief psychophisiological profile for the kapha dosha and energy.

Elements: Earth & water
Season: Spring
Qualities: Heavy, solid, hard, cool, inert, wet, dull, sticky, soft
Balancing qualities: Dry, light, mobile, hot, clear, subtle, spreading, sharp
Organs: Stomach, lungs, pancreas, head chest
Digestion: Slow/sluggish bowel movements
Balanced traits: Sweet, trustworthy, intelligent, loyal
Imbalanced traits: Overweight, apathetic, sedentary, depressed, greedy, attached
Tastes: Sweet, sour, salty
Balancing tastes: Bitter, astringent, pungent
Time of Day: 6-10 AM, 6-10 PM


Tips for Balancing Kapha

1. Turn off all screens one hour before bed, to allow your body to adjust. Screens mimic daylight, and therefore trick your body into wakefulness.
2. Try to be in bed by 10PM, and rise by 6AM. These particular sleeping hours are beneficial to your body’s natural circadian rhythms, and you’ll experience a much better quality sleep that will help you sustain your energy level and digestion throughout the day.
3. Avoid coughs, colds, and the flu by keeping your digestive fire (agni) stoked properly. A cup of ginger tea and lemon every day kindles this digestive fire, which burns off toxins and unhealthy types of fat.
4. Eat well, favoring warm, juicy, and well-cooked food, which is beneficial this time of year. To maintain a healthy weight, consider your climate, constitution, and personal habits when making food choices. Avoid snacking, and explore how much food you need at each meal to feel satisfied. Implement the use of spices, such as cinnamon and cardamom, to stimulate warmth and circulation at this time of year. Eat in a calm, relaxed environment.


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