Grishma Ritu or the summer season lasts from Mid-May to Mid-July. The summer winds lead to dryness and dehydration in the body. It causes moisture to evaporate – not just from the Earth but from everywhere. The scorching heat of Grishma Ritu reflects the characteristics of Pitta. Kapha starts to melt and stays relaxed. Dryness in the weather leads to excessive Vata. And, body strength is usually poor during the summer months.
Summer Season (Grishma Ritu)
According to Ritucharya in Ayurveda, like increases like. When the environment feels dry, hot, penetrating and gloomy, your body too is bound to feel the same. All of these qualities are synonymous with Pitta. So, opt for a lifestyle that counters the same. Allow yourself to stay cool – you’ll be less prone to skin irritations, heat rashes, diarrhea, anger, impatience, dehydration, tanning, and negative thoughts during Grishma Ritu or the summer season.
Since summer season is the hottest of all, digestion takes a toll. The Sun evaporates all your nourishment. Those powerful rays start diminishing Kapha and shoot up the Vata balance. However, summer is for sweet and this strengthens the weakened Vata. So,
- Increase the intake of cooling foods that are also easy on your digestion to cater the summery needs.
- Have more fluids during summer months – coconut water, buttermilk, kokum juice, and barley water are great.
- If you’re a tea person, try chamomile, peppermint, rosemary, hibiscus, jasmine or lemongrass tea. These herbal blends are flavorful and enhance your lunar side.
- Say a big no to alcohol, caffeinated or carbonated drinks.
- Make the most of what nature has to give – relish summer fruits like watermelon, cucumber, tomatoes, berries, avocadoes, mangoes, apples, cherries, and pears.
- Veggies like zucchini, celery, leafy greens, soy products, cottage cheese, raw salads, beans, and lentils are great for summer months.
- Spices like fennel, fenugreek, coriander, and cinnamon are healing. Mint, amla, lemon balm, and garden sage are cooling herbs for the summer season.
- Besides these, yogurt, kefir, nuts, oats, mint and millet, and also satisfying superfoods.
- Just avoid anything that’s sour, pungent, salty, heavy and warm.
Typically, summers are for enjoyment – vacation, parties, a change in lifestyle and eating out. This makes Vata slow and resistant. So, the idea is to adopt practices that ease out the depleting effects of the Sun on our internal as well as the external health. Follow these simple lifestyle changes during the summer months to beat the heat:
- Apply sandalwood paste all over your body once every week.
- When going out, do not forget your sunscreen.
- Wear light comfortable cotton clothes.
- Short afternoon naps are recommended.
- Extreme exercising must be avoided to prevent building up heat.
- Don’t stay out under the sun for too long.
- Stay in cooler places.
- Try basking in the moonlight.
- Meditate to encourage positive thinking.
- Use cooling massage oils like coconut oil.
- Try aromatherapy.
- Adopt a hobby. Keep yourself busy. Make the most of this time.
- Socialize more. Plan fun trips. Go camping, on a family vacation, hike or trekking.
- When you’re done – take a deep breath, pause, relax and time out.
- Avoid exertion. Practice restorative yoga poses like Surya Namaskar, Shavasana, Bhujangasana, and Pranayama.
Note: Articles on Ayurvedum are solely for the purpose of sharing the goodness of Ayurveda and bringing awareness on natural and healthy living. Please do not substitute it for professional medical advice. Ingredients discussed can interfere with certain medications. So, before using anything to treat yourself, always consult an Ayurveda doctor or practitioner.