Here is one explanation as to why!
According to Ayurveda or Ayurvedic Medicine (the ancient medical system of India and the sister science to Yoga), Autumn is a transitional season and is governed by the Ayurvedic dosha of Vata.
If you’re wondering what the heck does that mean (?!), let me further explain.
Ayurveda is a healing system based on the principles of nature and whose approach is focused on the balance between mind, body & spirit in order to maximize your health and well-being.
According to Ayurvedic theory, all energy in our natural world ( including ourselves) is made up of a combination of 5 elements: earth, air, water, fire and space. These elements give rise to 3 energies called doshas: vata, pitta, kapha.
Although we have a balance of all three of these energies within us, one dosha is often the most influential in each person.
An imbalanced dosha is believed to interfere with the natural flow of vital energy (prana) in the body, and explains each of our individual differences and likelihood of illness.
Think of dosha as the blueprint of your unique mind-body type that describes your individual personality, tendencies, and physical nature.
- Vata governs space and air.
- Pitta governs fire and water
- Kapha governs earth and water
Vata is the “king of doshas” as it regulates movement. Without movement there is no life. It is the first dosha affected by stress. When out of balance it is easy to become overwhelmed by stress and anxiety. As long as vata is in balance you will be lively, lean, enthusiastic and creative.
Autumn is the Vata season and includes nature’s elements of cold, rough, and windy.
In the Northern Hemisphere, the seasons switch from summer’s moist and warm temperatures to the dryer coldness in the autumn and early winter.
Autumn is a time to focus on balancing and managing the Vata dosha, so we do not create an imbalance in our inherent vata nature which can lead to problems such as restlessness, dry skin, digestive issues, constipation, insomnia, headaches, joint pain, exhaustion, anxiety.
3 TIPS on Managing Vata Dosha During Autumn
It’s important to take extra care to keep warm as the temperature drops. This includes more than piling on extra layers and wool socks.
Warming the body from the inside using warm,cooked foods and spices will help you to stay in balance. It is best to ingest more cooked, warming foods at this time rather than raw, cold foods.
Think carrots, sweet potatoes, zucchini, squash, pumpkins, turnips, oats, dates, nuts (walnuts, cashews, macadamia), pumpkin seeds, good quality oils such as coconut, sesame, olive oil, and ghee.
Ghee is basically butter with the milk solids removed. It is the number one Ayurvedic choice of oils and is wonderful for sauteing veggies and using it like butter to spread on toast or adding to soups and beverages.
Use spices to help aid circulation, warmth and digestion include: cardamom, basil, mustard seed, black pepper, cinnamon, clove, ginger, cumin, salt, thyme, tarragon, cilantro, sage, oregano, fennel, and turmeric.
Favor sweet, heavy fruits such as bananas, avocados, berries, mangoes, grapefruit, melons, lemons, oranges, dates, kiwi, apricots , plums, coconut and dried fruits.
*Alcohol, black tea, coffee, soda and carbonated drinks are aggravating to vata.
Fresh Ginger Tea with Lemon & Raw Honey
- Slice up some fresh ginger root,( a good thumb size)
- Put in a pot with 2 cups of water
- Simmer for 5-10 min. Covered
- Strain the ginger, then add squeeze a ½ fresh lemon
- Stir in 1-2 tsp. raw honey
- Regular Routine
A regular lifestyle routine helps Vata to ground so you are not carried away into the “Air,” the element of vata.
Make choices that bring warmth, stability and consistency to your life. Ideally go to bed before 10 PM and eat your meals at consistent times.
Stick with light exercises that enhance flexibility rather than kicking your ass and leaving you feeling depleted and exhausted.
Beneficial activities include:
- Short hikes
- Light bicycling
- Mindfulness and Breathing
Whether you’re struggling with sensitivity, seeking stability or simply savouring Autumn’s sweetness… CLICK HERE to take online yoga with me to help you flow through Fall!
3. Moisturize your skin
Dryness is a key feature of the Vata season. As the air gets drier and colder, our skin starts demanding more moisture.
I have been making my own moisturizer for the last 20 years because I wanted something that was not going to mess with my hormones and/or health.
Beware of all the chemicals in skin care products!!
I tend towards the vata nature of dryness and could never find a cream that felt deeply nourishing or hydrating enough, not to mention free from harmful ingredients.
My Magical Moisturizing Creme absorbs into the deeper layers of my skin and keeps me hydrated and glowing all day long. I lather my face and body every morning and again at night.
Want to try some? GO HERE to purchase some moisturizing creme.
A wonderful self-care ritual you might also consider including in your routine is to massage warm oils of either sesame or almond over your whole body after showering or bathing. In Ayurveda, this self-massage technique is called
This daily practice restores the balance of doshas and enhances well-being and longevity. It is especially grounding and relaxing for Vata dosha imbalances, but all can benefit from this practice.
In fact, clinical trials studying the effects of abhyanga proved to be an effective way to decrease stress levels, improve quality of sleep, and enhance one’s overall quality of life.
Over time, self-massage becomes a regular act of self-care and self-love that you can look forward to every day.
Interested in learning more about the benefits of abhyanga massage? Go check out this great article: The Benefits of Ayurveda Self-Massage “Abhyanga.”
If you want to find out what YOUR dosha is and how to keep yourself in balance go here and take the dosha quiz.
I wish you all a very balanced, warm, and nourishing Vata Season this Autumn!
Take good care of yourselves and reach out anytime, I am here to support you 🙂
Mucho Love, xx Kristin