Nature is our guide in Ayurveda. We look at the changes in the season, the weather patterns, and the qualities of our environment and rhythms of our lives to see how we can best support ourselves physically and mentally/ emotionally to stay in good health.
Ayurveda believes our disconnect with nature causes diseases and imbalances in ourselves.
Our lives and environments are ever-changing and to keep yourself in balance it helps to look at the seasonal changes to know how to adapt.
Read all about the month of November to stay in good health!
Fall is in full swing! The leaves are changing colour and are falling from the trees. The wind is rushing through the street and temperatures have dropped significantly. The heat in our houses has come on and this creates the challenge of dryness in fall. Heavier meals are appearing on the dining table to keep us warm and grounded. Our cravings move towards heartier, warming, and heavier foods, which is perfect, because in November our appetite naturally peaks. Now is the time to fuel the body for good immunity during the wintertime.
Winter is surely on the rise and we better get ready!
Yesterday's Halloween Feast has marked the season of darkness and pumpkins.
"Heavier meals are appearing on the dining table to keep us warm and grounded."
It is very clear now that we are fully in the fall season. The last days of warm weather are behind us and we are looking ahead to the winter season. Temperatures have dropped, the wind has picked up, and leaves are falling. You can even see the first frost on the rooftops in the early morning on some days. Better dress warm and get your scarves and hats from the attic!
The shorter days and dark early nights can give a cozy feeling of cuddling on the couch, but can also be challenging in terms of mental health. Getting enough sunlight in the day can help with that. Even though it is cold, still go outside!
It is still vata season which brings challenges of dryness, low energy, and anxiety. Drinking enough warm water and a soothing and warming ginger tea can keep your skin from drying out and keeping your GI tract moist for proper elimination. Adding some extra good-quality oils can also be beneficial to your elimination.
This is THE time of year to start up the daily practice of self oil massage (abhyanga). Do this massage with sesame oil (warming oil) in the morning to stay warm during the day. Oiling up also provides a nourishing element to the nervous system and can help with feeling grounded and calm. Kapha or pitta types both have the water element in their constitution and might not need to hydrate as much, but can still benefit from a grounding oil massage, as most of us nowadays struggle with stress and anxiety and staying grounded and calm.
The holiday season is here as well plus many Covid restrictions have been lifted, this means we can enjoy the company of others again! Getting together with family and friends over dinners in your own home gives a great sense of togetherness and pulls us out of the isolation we have been in for so long.
Daylight savings ends on November 7th and the clock moves one hour back. This means we lose an hour of sleep and this has more repercussions than you might think. Other biological clocks get disrupted and we feel it. Taking it easy that week to get accustomed and getting a good dose of sunlight during the day helps to overcome this jetlag kind of feeling.
"Getting together with friends and family over dinners in your own home gives a great sense of togetherness and pulls us out of the isolation we have been in for so long."
The Three Doshas in November
Vata is in full swing which means we have to stay warm, comfortable and take it easy. Make use of the shorter days, relax in the evening, and get to bed on time to have a good amount of sleep at night. Warm meals and dressing for the weather are key for vata to curb anxiety and stay warm. The best practice for vata is that self-oil massage in the morning. This will make all the difference!
Constipation can be more of a challenge around this time of year for vata. Dryness in your home due to the heat can increase that. A humidifier might help, ample fluid intake, and extra ghee in your meals!
The season of cold hands and feet is here. Due to the cold blood vessels constrict in your arms and legs and blood gets pushed to your core, this leads to a higher appetite, but also to cold hands and feet. Important for vatas is to eat nourishing, building, and warming foods that build up a layer of fat for the winter to prevent extreme cold and weight loss.
Preventing cold hands and feet comes from the insight out, drinking warm ginger tea can help to move blood to the extremities.
Vatas really need to avoid raw and cold foods at this time of year and make sure that they cook their food and eat it warm.