Eating Seasonally With Ayurveda

Ayurveda recognizes six seasons rather than four, and each season involves general food and activity recommendations to support health and happiness and keep you in balance with the principles of spiritual nutrition.

March–April—Vasanta-ritu, spring.
Eat lightly and sleep lightly.

May–June—Grishma-ritu, summer.
Eat lightly and drink cold fluids.

July–August—Varsha-ritu, monsoon.
Reinforce the appetite and eat hot foods.

September–October—Sharad-ritu, short summer.
Eat cool, sweet, and astringent foods.

November–December—Hemanta-ritu, winter.
Eat and exercise a lot.

January–February—Shishira-ritu, cold winter.
As with Hemanta-ritu, eat and exercise, and also spend time in reflection.

Sweet: adds the elements of earth and water; nourishes, cools, and moistens; includes rice, wheat, and sugar.

Sour: adds earth and fire; warms and oils; includes acidic fruits.

Salty: adds water and fire; dissolves, softens, and stimulates; in all salts.

Bitter: adds air and ether; cools, dries, and purifies; in green vegetables and spices such as turmeric and goldenseal.

Pungent: adds air and fire; warms, dries, and stimulates; in ginger and mustard.

Astringent: adds air and earth; cools and dries; in honey, buttermilk, pomegranate, and spices such as turmeric (which is also bitter).

Tasteful Healing

Rasa/Taste: Sweet
Elements added: Earth and water
What it does for the body: Nourishes, cools, and moistens
Spiritual Foods it’s found in: Rice, wheat, sugar, and root vegetables

Rasa/Taste: Sour
Elements added: Earth and fire
What it does for the body: Warms and oils
Spiritual Foods it’s found in: Acidic fruits

Rasa/Taste: Salty
Elements Added: Water and fire
What it does for the body: Dissolves, softens, and stimulates
Spiritual Foods it’s found in: Salts

Rasa/Taste: Bitter
Elements added: Air and ether
What it does for the body: Cools, dries, and purifies
Spiritual Foods it’s found in: Green vegetables, spices such as turmeric and goldenseal

Rasa/Taste: Pungent
Elements added: Air and fire
What it does for the body: Warms, dries, and stimulates
Spiritual Foods it’s found in: Ginger, mustard, and cayenne pepper

Rasa/Taste: Astringent
Elements added: Air and earth
What it does for the body: Cools and dries
Spiritual Foods it’s found in: Honey, buttermilk, beans, pomegranate, and turmeric

Flavor: Sour
Meridians: Liver and Gallbladder
Emotions Enhanced: Anger
Emotions Reduced: Thought

Flavor: Bitter
Meridians: Heart and Small Intestine
Emotions Enhanced: Joy
Emotions Reduced: Sadness and worry

Flavor: Sweet
Meridians: Spleen and Stomach
Emotions Enhanced: Thought
Emotions Reduced: Fear and shock

Flavor: Pungent
Meridians: Lung and Large Intestine
Emotions Enhanced: Worry and sadness
Emotions Reduced: Anger

Flavor: Salty
Meridians: Kidney and Bladder
Emotions Enhanced: Fear and shock
Emotions Reduced: Joy

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