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How to Feel Your Best in Spring with Ayurveda

October 8th, 2015 | no comments


Spring has sprung here in Australia, and the roller coaster ride has begun. One day hot and glorious, the next day cold and rainy. One week we’re jumping out of bed at the crack of dawn nailing our new fitness routines and the next a snotty flue or allergies have hit.

It’s a time of change, and change can be tumultuous, but if we pay a little extra attention to Nature and her ways we can learn to navigate seasonal changes with more grace and ease.

According to Ayurveda, Spring is heavy with moisture and our body’s are also heavy from Winter — that means that Spring time can lead to Kapha imbalances — too much earth and water element.

Ayurveda is really practical, and works to find balance based on a simple principle: like increases like, and opposites balance. 

So at this time of year we need to actively bring in the opposite of water and earth element to stay balanced — that means more lightness, heating and drying with foods, activities and attitudes.

Nature naturally provides us with foods like leafy greens and sprouts that are light, the warmer days inspire us to come out of the winter cave and connect with others and the earlier sunrises make it easier to wake up and move your body to burn up accumulated toxicity from Winter.

Spring is a time to change and bring in the new! If we stay stuck in Winter eating and lifestyle patterns we’re likely to find ourselves suffering from allergies, colds and excess weight that keeps us from fully embracing this time of year. So below you’ll find a number of tips to keep you balanced and happy as you transition through Spring.

Typical Imbalances in Spring: 

Too much moisture, mucus, excess heaviness from Winter (Kapha Dosha)

What to do to Balance? 

Bring in more lightness, dryness, heat and stimulation through diet and lifestyle.

Ideal Actions in Spring: 

Burn up excess heaviness, toxicity, and accumulated wastes from Winter and support new growth.


A Healthy Spring Diet

Shift to Lighter Eating

This tends to be a natural tendency in Spring, we start to crave lighter foods and meals and move away from the root veggie and warming heavy food that are good for us in Winter. Eating lighter will help your metabolism work through natural accumulation of weight and toxicity that come in Winter. Notice if your eating out of habit from Winter, or if it’s really what your body wants.

Eat Fresh Greens, Veggies & Fruit

You may find yourself craving fruit, fresh vegetables, and salads galore. This is your body’s way of telling you that it’s time for some spring-cleaning. You can’t really go wrong with eating fresh veggies as they’re alkalising, purifying and nitrifying, but because this season tends toward too much moisture we want to reduce (not avoid) heavy or watery veggies like avocado, cucumber, olives, sweet potato, squash or zucchini.  Eat raw and cooked, easy to digest foods. Raw can sometimes be too hard to digest so mix it up.

Eat Pungent, Bitter and Astringent Tastes 

Support your body’s natural desire to purify and renew by favouring the pungent, bitter, and astringent tastes. These tastes stimulate digestive heat, cut through mucus and open the channels of elimination so critical for purification.

  • Pungent means spicy like onion, chilli, garlic and spices.
  • Bitter can be found in many greens as well as turmeric and sprouts.
  • Astringent foods are drying like lentils, most raw veggies and grapefruit.

Drink Room Temp, Warm or Hot Beverages

Cold drinks put out our digestive fire and slow it down, we want to keep it stimulated to process the Winter waste and mucus. Try starting the day with warm water and lemon. This also gets the bowels moving to supports vital elimination.

Avoid/Reduce Dairy

Dairy is naturally very mucus building and heavy, the exact qualities that we’re trying to avoid in Spring so as to dodge the seasonal sinus and congestion bullet. Dairy is also slow to digest so requires more work from your system that could be directed toward cleansing tissues. Rice milk and almond milk are good substitutes. If you do have cow’s milk, boil it first, take it warm, and consider adding a pinch of turmeric or ginger to make it more digestible (and less congesting).

In General Focus On Eating…

Lunches and dinners of and light, cooked grains, steamed vegetables, and legumes with lots of bitter greens, cabbage family vegetables (cabbage, broccoli, cauliflower, etc.), and spicy foods like chilies. Freshwater fish, tofu, and eggs are good proteins for Spring. You can enhance your meals with the pungent flavour of onions, garlic, ginger, black pepper, chili pepper, small amounts cayenne pepper, and a variety of herbs and spices.

At the same time, gradually reduce your intake of heavy, oily, chilled, processed or fried foods. Try to curtail any tendency to overeat or snack between meals, and place less emphasis on the sweet, sour, and salty tastes.

A Healthy Spring Lifestyle

Set Intentions 

Spring is about renewal and we can capitalise on this energy by setting some intentions – but it’s also about feeling lighter, playful and trying new things, so don’t be too strict with yourself.

Socialise and Connect 

Winter is a time to introvert and hibernate, Spring is a time to come out of the cave and connect. Winter can be a time of emotional or creative steeping, and now we want to stimulate that introspection into action in the world. Connect more and share with friends and loved ones to support and nurture this transition. Play! Have Fun! Explore!

Get Up Earlier

This is a perfect time of year to start getting up earlier along with the sun and dedicate yourself to more invigorating mornings to burn through the built up Kapha heaviness of Winter and prevent the onset of season illness by stimulation immunity.


Try Something New

It’s always good to have routines, but spring can be a great opportunity to change some routines — be playful, try something new, let your wild side out, adventure and be expressive!

Wear Colourful Clothes 

Dress in bright, warming colors like reds, yellows, and oranges in the early spring, while the weather remains cool and wet. As the weather heats up, gradually shift toward cooling blues, greens, purples, and whites.

Stimulating Spring Morning Routine 

  • Tongue scrape first thing
  • Drink warm lemon water
  • Move! Yoga, running, swimming, walking, dancing, yogi cha cha
  • Dry brush or self oil massage to stimulate lymph and immunity
  • Pranayama like kapalabati (breath of fire) or Bastrika (billows breath)
  • Body scanning meditation focused on lightness

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