Photo: Tobis Donbavand
It’s that time of year when the sun transitions towards the north and the vital life-energies return back to the earth. This is the time for turning inward, a time of reflection and letting go of the accumulations produced by the hot season. A time to prepare the body, senses and mind to be nourished, replenished and strengthened throughout the colder months.
During the rainy season, pitta and kapha qualities within the body accumulate. This is due to an increase in environmental heat, and rainfall resulting in high humidity. This causes our digestive and upper respiratory systems to become sluggish and congested due to hot, damp and sour qualities. These qualitative accumulations may lead to weakened digestive capacity, reduced immunity and a depletion in general strength.
Below are some supportive tips to move with the season
Balance the body
Avoid excess sour foods - Although there are many benefits to sour and fermented foods in terms of their digestive stimulating benefits as well as pre and probiotic activity; keeping these foods to a minimum during the rainy season helps to prevent excess sour, damp, humid heat that may further hinder gut function. Fermented foods are traditionally used during the colder months where food variety becomes scarce in many regions of the world and is required to be preserved. Digestive capacity also needs to be stimulated to ensure we maintain adequate core temperature. This may also help ensure beneficial gut bacteria are also preserved during winter.
Balance the senses
Gandusha - Oil pulling - This procedure involves gargling and swishing medicated substances or oils in the mouth for a certain period of time. Gandusha is used in both healthy and diseased conditions. Some benefits of gandusha include feeling of lightness in mouth, normal functioning of sense organs, strengthening teeth and gums, improving taste perception and cleansing the oral cavity thus preventing conditions such as gingivitis.
· 1 tablespoon Gandusha Oil, cured sesame oil or cold pressed coconut oil
· 1 cup water
· 1 Spittoon or somewhere for expelling oil ( not the sink, the oil will clog)
METHOD After warm shower place 1 tablespoon of medicated or cured sesame oil into the mouth. Gargle and swish oil between throat, cheeks and front of mouth. Continue swishing until oil becomes completely emulsified then discard liquid.
Balance the mind
Sheetali Pranayama - This is a yogic breathing technique which helps to cool the palate, oral cavity and throat by directing cool air towards the epithelial cells and cooling the blood flow. This is done by rolling the lateral edges of the tongue upwards on inhalation and can be practised throughout the day. This technique has also been used by yoga practitioners to increase peace of mind and tranquillity.
Coming up with Wayne:
-Autumn Cleanse workshop with Wayne on the 25th March at 1pm
-Thursday evening Yoga Nidra class with Chris lane on flute 6:15pm