Ayurveda and Seasonal Influences

Posted in: Ayurveda

The intricate nature of the seasons is given by the course of the earth, sun and moon, while the human vitality is determined by the resulting variations.

The two most important transitional periods are between November 22nd to December 9th and again June 8th to 24th. During these times, there is a tendency toward physio-psychological vulnerabilities and stress. To restore balance in the mind and body, it is advised to observe fasting, meditation and prayers.

Early winter started around November 15th and lasts till January 15th. This is followed by the late winter which takes us to about March 15th.

Each season brings with it a predominant taste in the atmosphere, and each taste is made up of two elements in nature.

Early winter is marked by the prevalence of the sweet taste, and in order to maintain balance it is recommended during this time that we eat salty, bitter, astringent foods; moderate sour, warm, moderate unctuous foods in moderate quantities. The tastes  to avoid are sweet, excess sour, along with excess cold, dry or raw foods, also excess foods.

In the late winter it is recommended to consume substantial quantities of food, unctuous with the tastes sour, salty, moderate sweet. To be avoided are excess sweet, pungent, bitter, dry, cold, raw foods, and meager quantity of foods.

Due to planetary movements it looks like in the Northern Hemisphere we are strongest by nature in the period of January 10th to the 24th. 

Here is a recipe for a nutritious winter salad:

Millet and Quinoa Salad (serves 2 to 4, depending if side or main dish)

1/2 c millet

1/2 c quinoa

21/1 c boiling water

1 bay leaf

4 stalks celery

1 red bell pepper

1/4 c celery water

1 tsp sunflower oil

1 tsp lime juice

1/2 tbs minced fresh rosemary 

Wash grains and combine. Add to boiling water with the bay leaf. Cover and simmer over low heat for 25 minutes. Cut celery into 1/2" pieces and boil in 1 c of water for 3 minutes; reserve water. Thinly slice bell pepper and marinate in 1/4 c celery water, oil, lime juice, and rosemary leaves for 30 min. In a large bowl, toss grains, celery, and marinated pepper mixture. Serve warm.