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Ayurveda: 3 daily rituals to feel your best

Three Daily Rituals to Feel Your Best

Dissolve the concept of ‘perfect’ health. Always in flux, what worked for us five years ago might not be the most supportive now. Ayurveda teaches us to support ourselves while traveling or under stress or in a life transition. Every body is completely different, there is no ‘one size fits all’. That is the good news! We get to try different supportive therapies to see what helps at different times in our lives.

The core of who we are doesn’t change, but we can get stuck in patterns that cause physical, emotional, and energetic imbalances.  Dosha means imbalance. Basically, we can use our food and environment to change these imbalances and feel less lethargic, airy, or firey everyday.

Try this dosha test, maybe with a friend and think long term patterns while taking it.  Then, match your dosha up to these ideas to support your health this summer:

Vata Daily Summer Rituals:
Abhyanga (oil massage), coconut water, and meditation

• Vata imbalance has a tendency to be light, cold, and airy. If you are cold try drinking warm tea or put socks on. If you are light or feeling airy maybe eat more bread, grains, or try a short meditation.

• Enthusiastic vata is happy to cheer their friends on, but can quickly become overwhelmed and out of balance especially in digestion. Consider keeping joints and skin lubricated and improving circulation with morning abhyanga. Sesame oil is a good choice to improve grounding, but any organic oil is great. Run the bottle under hot water and begin to massage a light amount of oil from the tip of the head to the toes, paying special attention to the ears, face, elbows, fingers and toes. Rinse off in a warm shower after 15 minutes.

• Staying hydrated is especially important for this imbalance to release emotional energy and encourage liver health. Coconut water is cooling for the body and extra hydrating.

• Finally, short meditations, 5 to 10 minutes, once or twice a day keep the mood balanced and slow down that quick vata mind. Also, meditation helps to release overwhelm.

 

Pitta Daily Summer Rituals:
    Viparita Karani, aloe, and evening walks

• Pitta constitutions crave information, but an imbalance can lead to arrogance. Focused and intense pitta constitutions can burnout in the summer heat. If you are hot internally drink cooling tonics, if you notice your words or emotions are sharp try ingesting more milk products.

• Focused and friendly the efficient pitta can veer into criticism and anger when imbalanced. Restorative viparita karani (legs up the wall) cools the body. How to: Sit one hip, leg, and arm against the wall, then place a bolster against the wall behind your back. Walk hands behind you and as your back descends toward the ground your walk legs up the wall. Your backside is now on the bolster. Scoot the bolster toward your mid back, enough that your backside is close to the wall and might hang off the bolster. Then, slide a blanket under the shoulders to maintain the natural curve of the neck. Open the arms as wide as feels good. Hang out here and breath for up to 8 minutes.

 

• Aloe juice can be found in the nutrition section of the grocery.  Aloe is ultra cooling to the system, high in vitamins and amino acids, but the taste can be off-putting. Give yourself the luxury of cooling off in good taste with varieties including cranberry.

• As the sun begins to set a short walk with a friend, love, or alone allows the intensity and concentration of the mind to wander. Connection is life sustaining and being in nature softens the hard edge of an imbalanced pitta.

Kapha Daily Summer Rituals:
Sun salutations, essential oil distillation, morning tea

• Even-keeled Kapha’s capacity for compassion makes them a stable and loving friend, but lethargy and over-sentimentality can cause stagnation. If you feel dense try adding vegetables and grains to your meals, and similarly if you feel cloudy add more fruits and avoid milk.

• Beginning your day with three sets of sun salutations helps with digestion, circulation, and moving your creative juices. Classic surya namaskar is a great choice here encouraging one breath for each movement.

• Diffusing peppermint oil in the home adds cooling properties to kapha’s favorite place.

• A morning cup of gaba oolong, green tea, or a local kombucha can assist in cutting through any left over lethargy after your sun salutations. San Diego based Mad Monk Tea Company offers an incredible honey toned gaba oolong tea less acidic than coffee and simply delicious.

To your best health today!

Emily Ruth is a San Diego based yoga teacher and interested in all things Ayurveda. To find out more about her journey to become an Ayurvedic practitioner or take a class please visit discoverhealings.squarespace.com

 

 

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