While it may not be official summer yet, here in southeastern United States it is pretty hot. Adjusting your lifestyle to accommodate the rhythms of the seasons, is a common practice in Ayurveda. According to Ayurveda, summer is the season of Pitta (Fire and Water( dosha, which is associated with heat, intensity, and transformation. As the Pitta increases, we often experience symptoms of heath such as rashes, burns, and change in our digestion and cravings.
One of the most important ways to balance Pitta during the summer months, is by adjusting the diet and in particular by incorporating the below herbs that help balance the fiery Pitta heat:
• Aloe Vera: Aloe vera is a cooling and hydrating herb that can help soothe and heal sunburned skin. It is also helpful for reducing inflammation and supporting digestion, which can be affected by Pitta imbalances. This is a personal favorite because it is so versatile, it can be consumed each morning during the summer months and also topically applied to keep the skin cool and build a moisture barrier.
• Coriander: Coriander is a cooling herb that can help reduce Pitta in the body. It is also known to support digestion, which can be particularly important during the summer months when the digestive system can become overheated. One of the best way to incorporate Coriander is by adding more Cilantro in your recipes!
• Mint: This cooling and refreshing herb is perhaps the most widely used during the summer months and can help reduce Pitta and cool the body during the summer months. It is also helpful for supporting digestion and reducing inflammation. Add some mint leaves to your water for a cooling and refreshing taste!
• Brahmi: Brahmi is a cooling and calming herb that can help reduce stress and anxiety, which can be exacerbated by Pitta imbalances. It is also helpful for improving cognitive function and memory.
• Turmeric: Turmeric is a powerful anti-inflammatory herb that can help reduce inflammation in the body, which can be exacerbated by Pitta imbalances. It is also helpful for supporting liver function, which is important for overall health and detoxification.
These herbs can be used in various forms, including as dietary supplements, teas, and topical preparations.