Winter is perceived by many as a season of dismal cold and gloom and is the season of excess Kapha accumulation according to Ayurveda. This is reflected in our tendency to hibernate during this period. The slow and sluggish winter mornings offer temptation to stay in bed longer, however the more time we spend in the ease and cosiness of our beds, the more we become a target to lethargy, depression and diminished digestion.
Ayurvedic principals focus on managing Kapha during winter by adapting naturally to appropriate food and lifestyle activities counteracting lethargic and depressive phase. Ayurveda advocates that winter is not a weakening season but actually the best season to improve your immunity.
Don't skip meals. Eat warm well balanced portions of cooked food. Include plenty of soups made with Mung bean, Adzuki beans, Pumpkin, Carrot, Ginger and Chicken. Cook with spices - they're not only great flavour enhancers, they can also help you stay healthy and beautiful.
Use energising herbs and spices like Ginger, Mustard, Cumin seeds, Cardamom, Black pepper, Basil, Turmeric and sesame seeds to boost the digestive fire.
Choose healthier alternatives to sweeteners such as Honey and .
Eat pure, fresh foods and stay away from processed foods that contain additives and chemical preservatives.
Drink warm liquids throughout the day. Warming herbal teas containing Ginger, Liquorice, Cardamom, Peppermint or Basil are ideal. Apart from the physical warming properties, this will ensure that we are able to digest and eliminate our food properly and also help prevent catching a cold and cough that all too common during the winter months. Warm water first thing in the morning helps activate the digestive system and chase away the morning chill.
Dairy, Cheese, Red meat, Shell fish, Mushrooms alcohol.
Late dinners, deep fried food, cold food and beverages.
Cold weather draw heat from where it is most needed - the vital organs. Getting blood out to the periphery of the body can be a slower process resulting in cold hands and feet. Exercises with repetitious movement will assist in blood circulation and can be easily done sitting in your office chair. Taking a step further, regular vigorous cardio based exercise, such as swimming and yoga will help keep the body's metabolism steady and active.
Self massage using Sesame or Almond oil before the bath will keep body warm and energised. Use soap free cleansers on the skin to protect skin and also use coconut butter as a natural moisturiser.
Give your skin lipid support from within by including soaked and blanched almonds, soaked walnuts and ghee (clarified butter) in your diet.
Choose natural fibres such as wool or silk for protection. Natural fabrics allow the skin to breathe better. If your skin tends to chafe with wool, try thick cotton. Always dress in layers so you can add or remove layers for comfort. Bundling up too much can cause moisture loss through sweat.
Sounds such an obvious thing, but really make sure you're dressed for the weather.
Padaghata: a unique Ayurvedic pressure by foot massage done by experienced therapists using their feet. This helps to reduce lethargy, aches and pains and stiffness.
Udvartana: herbal powder massage helps to kick start body’s metabolism and improves circulation and leaves you feel invigorated.
Hot Stone Massage: brings warmth in to the muscle tissue by enhancing circulation.