Obviously, we all want to keep our respiratory and immune systems strong right now. Did you know that what you do in summer has a huge impact on your immunity in fall and winter? If you don’t take care to keep the heat of the summer from accumulating in your body, this deep heat rises and dries out the respiratory system and mucous membranes as we move into fall. This leaves you more susceptible to respiratory pathogens.
Summer is Pitta season – the season of the fire element (and some water). Pitta is hot, sharp, light, fast and intense. In Ayurveda, we balance by bringing in the opposite qualities through all of our senses. In summer favor cool, slow, soft and moist qualities.
» Here are a few diet and habit tips for keeping the heat at bay «
- FOODS TO FAVOR: Gardens are full and there’s no better time to work that plant-based diet. Sweet, bitter and astringent tastes are best during the summer. Favor cucumbers, corn, lettuce, summer squashes, zucchini, cilantro and most bitter greens. Favor apples, berries, dates, melons, avocados and coconut. Opt for barley and quinoa for grains; chickpeas and white beans for protein. Coconut milk is a super sweet and cooling summer food.
- GO GREEN: One of my very favorite summertime habits is growing tons of greens in my garden, and picking them every day for juicing, green smoothies, salads or simple cooked greens. Greens are high in chlorophyll. They cool the blood, reduce inflammation, and easily convert to quick energy.
- MOVE EARLY, REST LATER: Favor gentle to moderate morning exercise, before the heat of the day accumulates. Once it does, chill out. Limit intense physical exercise, especially after noon. Stay cool and protected during the peak sun hours.
- CONNECT WITH NATURE: Spend time outside when the day is cooler. Try moonbathing at night rather than sunbathing midday. Enjoy a plunge in nearby bodies of water as often as possible.
- SKIP THE ICE: It seems counterintuitive but cold and iced drinks strongly weaken digestion. Digestion is the root of optimal health, so skipping the cold drinks has a big impact. Favor room temperature drinks instead.
- COCONUT OIL MASSAGE: Before or after bathing, morning or evening, take some time to massage coconut oil onto your skin (including scalp and soles of your feet).
To learn more about how to support your vitality and immunity, schedule a free 30-min phone session with me. The cycles of nature are clear, once we start tuning into them. Honor them with your habits and thrive!