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Autumn

Apr 12, 2021 | Ayurveda, Health, Mental Health

Autumn, my favourite time of the year. It is a time of transition; there is a softer light, the temperature is changing and the air is becoming crisper; there is a whole new crop of fruits and vegetables that are available, urging us to invite warmth & nourishment in our meals.

In the ancient wisdom of Ayurveda, autumn signifies the reign of Vata, with its qualities of dryness, lightness, and unpredictability. This shift can leave us feeling menatlly & emotionally ungrounded, and manifest in physical discomforts such as dry skin and constipation, particularly if we have a vata dominant constitution.

However, Ayurveda offers a roadmap to navigate this season with grace and vitality. By incorporating some simple lifestyle adjustments that naturally reflect the opposite qualities of vata, we may better manage our mental & physical health at this time of year and ensure we are prepared for winter.

Food: Now is the time of year to reduce raw, cold food and turn toward more cooked, nourishing, and grounding foods. Add spices such as ginger, cardamom and cinnamon to your food as well as tea. These are naturally warming to the system and support circulation and digestion.

Lifestyle: One of the best ways to soothe vata is to incorporate consistent daily routines. Going to bed and waking up, exercising, and eating at the same time each day will help balance vata’s irregular energy.

Self-massage (abhyanga) with warm oil will lubricate the skin, keeping it moist and soft, is wonderful for stiff joints, and also has a very calming effect on the nervous system.

Movement: Regular and moderate exercise at this time of year will assist in calming vata.

A slow, deliberate āsana practice that focuses on grounding and stability is very benefical for soothing vata. Adding in some conscious breathing and meditation after your movement will compund the grounding effect of your practice.

Taking leisurely walks in natural surroundings can have a profoundly calming effect. The rhythmic movement of walking combined with the grounding energy of nature helps to center the mind and body, reducing feelings of anxiety and restlessness.

Although it does mean that summer has come to an end, autumn brings its own unique gifts and opportunities for growth. It can be a soothing balm after the intensity of summer. It encourages us to slow down, reflect, and find beauty in the subtle transformations of nature.

Embracing the rhythm of the seasons allows us to reconnect with ourselves and the world around us, fostering a sense of gratitude and harmony amidst life’s ever-changing landscape.

Enjoy!

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