6th World Ayurveda DayAyurveda recommended seasonal habits to prevent diseases
Dr Loukrakpam Victoria Devi
2nd of November 2021 is celebrated as world Ayurveda day. The science of Ayurveda with its strong and unique fundamentals hold its domain forever amidst all scientific and medical advancements. Ayurveda is not just health rather it is a way of life.
In Ayurveda there is a concept of Ritucharya. Ritu means season and charya means following or discipline. In simple words Ritucharya means seasonal lifestyle and diet that need to be followed according to the particular seasonal requirement to maintain hormonal balance in our body to stay fit and healthy. So there is a need to bring in limelight the concept of ritucharya.
The seasons are Early-winter, winter, spring, summer, rainy and autumn season. These seasons are characterized by differences in temperature, length of daylight, air pressure, quantity of rainfall etc.
According to the season our human body also tends to have different digestive power, body strength etc. In order to avert diseases, one should follow certain diet and regime to maintain equilibrium and stay healthy. Starting with the present season, lets see the diet and regime given in Ayurveda to prevent diseases.
Early-winter season and Winter season : Mid November– mid January mid-January to mid March, during this season blow of cool breezes begins and chillness is felt. The energy and digestive power of an individual stays on highest grade. The goal of this season is to keep you warm and nourished. Diet : Now it is the time to eat sweet, sour, and salty foods as well as unctuous or oily dishes to keep that digestive fire burning strong ! The ideal diet of this season includes pumpkin, cabbage, onions, beet roots, apples, dates and dairy products. Avoid foods that are light, cold and dry. Also include ginger, haritaki (terminelia chebula, Manahi in Manipuri), piper longum in the diet.
Regime : Exercise, body massage with warm medicated oils and sunbath should be included in daily regime but avoid napping during daytime and exposure to cold wind.
Spring season : This season lasts from mid-March to mid May. The strength and digestive power of an individual remains in medium state.
Diet : This is one of the sensitive times for our body, so focus on eating easily digestible, bitter and astringent foods. The ideal food for this season includes gut healthy food like barley, pulses, mugda, old rice, wheat, coriander, cumin, turmeric etc. Honey should be specifically incorporated in the diet.
Regime : Regular exercise is a must and cleansing therapy like vamana should be done.
During this allergy season, it is important to clean the respiratory system so including nasya therapy is beneficial. Nasya therapy includes clearing out of excess mucus and therapeutic oil to keep things lubricated. Daytime napping is strictly prohibited in this season.
Summer season: This season is intensely hot and environment is prevalent with unhealthy wind and last from mid-May –mid July. The digestive power of an individual remains mild.
Diet : Sweet, light, cold, mineral rich food should be incorporated in diet. Eat lots of herbs, drink lots of fruit juices and avoid sour, pungent or hot foods. The ideal diet of this season includes fresh fruits, vegetables like asparagus, cucumber, celery, buttermilk, meat soups.
Milk with sugar should be taken at night. Foods having pungent, sour taste, alcoholic products should be avoided. Curd should be avoided.
Regime: Napping during daytime is advisable in this season as the daytime is long and night time is short. Body massage should be done and extreme exercise should be avoided.
Rainy season: The strength and digestive power is fluctuating and lasts from mid July to mid September.
Diet : Salty, sour and oily foods can be included in diet. Avoid heavy foods at first and transition slowly through the season. Meat soups, ginger, lemon, old rice, barley are suggested. One should use boiled water for drinking during this season and include curd in diet.
Regime : Cleansing therapy should be done in this season to avoid diseases. Napping during daytime should be avoided.
Autumn season : The strength and digestive power is maximum and this season lasts from mid September to mid November.
Diet : Eat hot, bitter, light, cold, astringent and sweet foods that are easy on our stomach. The ideal autumn diet includes rice, honey, green leafy vegetables, tomato, pineapples, berries, plums, ghee (clarified butter) and other dairy products. Avoid curd during this season .
Regime : Excessive exposure to sunlight, sleeping during daytime should be avoided.
By incorporating this Ayurvedic diet and regime of different seasons in their daily routine will help to maintain a healthy life and prevent diseases.
The writer is publicity secretary, ADAM (Ayurvedic Doctors Association of Manipur)