Top 3 Best Ayurvedic Practices for Fall: an interview with Ankita Singh, Ayurvedic Physician.
Shannon: I could ask you questions all day long. I'm so excited to share even a sliver of your knowledge with those interested in the practices of Ayurveda. I know it has been life-changing for me. We are about to transition out of the summer heat and into a typically cool and windy fall. What are your recommendations for this time of year so that we can feel our best?
Ankita: #1 September is the month of transition as the weather starts to get cooler we have to move from eating cold and astringent foods like salads to warm foods like soups and porridges. Include high-quality oils in your diet as the grounding quality of oils helps to balance Vata (use according to your constitution check our guidelines). Slowly move from summer cooling drinks to warm teas like ginger tea or basil tea.
Shannon: Yes, Ayurveda says if it is cold outside do not eat cold food. Which makes sense as more cooling vegetables grow easily in the summer heat and we harvest more root vegetables in the fall.
Ankita: Yes. Fall is high Vata season, meaning weather is going to be windy and cold. There is an increase of air element in the environment. The cold and dry quality of air in your environment increases Vata dosha in the body and mind that you can see this in the body as it increases in dryness on skin, hair, constipation and joint problems. In the mind, you may see an increase in anxiety or restlessness (especially if you are predominantly Vata by nature).
That’s why we gradually change our diet to warm and cooked foods to prevent Vata imbalances happening in the fall.
#2 Transition are stressful for Vata especially in fall because you are entering into a Vata predominant season. Vata is dry and light and cool and moving so we need the opposite qualities like warm, heavy, moist to balance Vata. That’s why we use lots of oils internally and externally to balance Vata in the fall season. We should also start a daily Abhyanga (self-massage) with warm sesame oil or at least once a week. And treat yourself with this Indian Oil Massage at the spa with an Ayurvedic Practitioner.
Shannon: You always recommend detox in two main transition periods, spring and fall. Can you elaborate on that?
Ankita: #3 Change of seasons is considered as a cleansing season in Ayurveda. Every season has one dosha that is predominant. For example, in summer we have lots of heat that can increase Pitta. Pitta is in the environment and in your body. When you are entering into fall it's time to detoxify the Pitta you have collected in summer. You can do a simple Ayurveda home cleanse (1 to 7 days) as suitable for your constitution and for your lifestyle. Or you can get a Panchakarma done (a personalized Ayurveda Cleanse with the supervision of Ayurveda physician).
A quick tip now: Eat lots of bitter greens but cook them and include herbs to cleanse excess Pitta from blood and liver like Triphala.
Shannon: Yes, I experienced a 10 day Panchakarma with your last year. It was incredible. I felt amazing. Not just physically, mentally and emotionally. Can you explain in a little more detail what Panchakarma is?
Ankita: Panchakarma is a type cleansing therapy that is designed to cleanse and rejuvenate the body and mind. Panchakarma is done after a initial consultation with a Ayurveda physician who can determine your dosha mind and body balances and imbalances, then the physician designs a Panchkarma therapy plan according to the client’s body and mind. Panchkarma does not only help to cleanse the toxins out of the body also helps to bring the calm and peace to mind.
Stress is one of the major factors of most chronic illnesses. One thing about stress is that you are not only holding it in your mind you are holding it in your body too. Panchakarma helps to release that stress or unwanted memories that you have been holding in your body for a long time without even knowing it. Panchakarma helps you stay healthy in both mind and body level.
Panchakarma includes different therapies (like abhyanga(massage) , shirodhara, nasya , basti, virechana ) and customizes diet plan before during and after a cleanse.
Shannon: Incredible. To say the least, this goes much deeper than a regular cleanse. And my hope is that everyone has an opportunity to experience a Panchakarma.
If you would like to learn more about getting back to your true nature and your personal doshas, please book an Ayurvedic Consultation with Ankita. Follow the link here for more information.
We also offer 3, 5, 7 and 10 Day Panchakarmas.