Let’s take a look at some Ayurvedic dietary recommendations for fall. We also take a look at the best fall diet for all dosha types.
And so comes the change. The colors, the wind, the leaves on the ground. For some, the fall represents the most beautiful season of the year. For others, it is a prelude of the winter and all that comes with it.
It is all about perspective, it is all about what the season represents according to each one’s experience. However, there is one common denominator. Every change of season brings some sort of stress in the body.
It is an organic response, after all, with every change, there is a response in adaptability, even when that response happens in a different energetic level.
The reality is, if there is a change in the environment, we have to change with it and so does our diet. To understand how to adapt our diet to a new season, let’s go over a few points.
Let’s talk a little bit about the role of ojas!
Ojas: The Life Essence
This substance, which is the product of the body’s micro metabolism is a substance that is the immunity’s support system which aids in vitality, better sleep and of course, better overall health.
Ojas is depleted when there is a triggering stressor. A climate transition can very much be that trigger.
For doshas in the body, no change happens without a consequence. The beautiful orange leaves and the smells of pumpkin and apple pies come with a drier, colder environment.
It is the end of the summer, the long night outs, the laid back family lifestyle: kids are back in school, work has new demands and the lifestyle changes.
The Ayurvedic Fall Diet
With the new season, comes the new cravings, the colder and sometimes cozier environment is an invitation for heavier foods, more indulgence, and possibly more pounds.
How can one not fall from a healthier lifestyle when the season changes? It is well known in Ayurveda that the physical constitution that suffers more with the transition from summer to fall is the Vata dosha.
Due to the properties that resemble cold, dry, mobile and space, the similarities that the new season represents bring a heavier aggravation just because the analogy will exacerbate the same qualities.
As a result, a Vata pacifying diet is recommended. When one thinks in terms of a boost in immunity and resiliency at this time of the year, one thinks warming, comforting and nourishing.
Keep in mind though and think common sense on the intensity of the lifestyle requirements and changes.
What is early fall in New York is different from what happens in other regions such as Tennessee and South Florida for example where the changes are still present but much more subtle.
A Vata Pacifying Fall Diet For All 3 Doshas
Vatas are happier with the sweeter (madhura), saltier (lavana) and natural sour tastes (amla). When deranged, it is manifested through sensations of bloating, gas, fear and anxiety, constipation, cracking joints or pain, dry skin, and insomnia.
Also as the colder weather approaches, a person tends to take more trips to urinate leading possibly to more dryness. Dehydration also weakens digestion and that can compromise immunity.
In late fall, in more prone geographical areas, a phenomenon called cold diuresis (constriction of blood vessels to reduce blood flow to the skin to preserve heat might cause the appearance of the skin to look older and pale.
The inclusion of nourishing and oily components in food will help to counteract those actions.
Vatas also might need more water during this time. Milk, whole grains, oats, rice, quinoa, berries, barley, rye are good options. So is apricots, mangoes, squares, pumpkins, and sweet potatoes.
Rooted vegetables such as carrots, beets, yucas, and ginger are great options. As they grow underground, there is a greater absorption of nutrients from the earth.
Pittas do better and get calmer with sweet (madhura), astringent (kashaya) and bitter (tikka) tastes. The liver needs to be cleared and nourished. The fall season is a great time for that.
Following a somewhat Vata pacifying diet watching for components that might be too aggravating for Pittas should result in an optimal diet. An example is the avoidance of sour properties in the food.
As it strengthens the heart, stimulates circulation, it can aggravate Pittas with possible diarrhea and headaches while for Kaphas it can intensify moisture naturally high in this constitution or Prakriti.
However, the dryness of the season should help to counteract that.
Kaphas will be more content when pungent (Katu), astringent (kashaya) and bitter (tikka) tastes are emphasized in their diet.
During this time of the year early to late fall, Kaphas will be a lot more comfortable since the season brings an opportunity of creating more dryness and lightness to the dosha.
Again, common sense and balance. While Vatas can indulge a little more during the fall having those extra slices of pumpkin and apple pie.
Pittas and especially Kaphas should go exclusively for the all natural version of the fruits and vegetables.
The cooked versions would be a better option during the fall. Think cooked apples as an example of a side dish or snack and/or pumpkin soups instead versus the more indulgent options.
Generically speaking, associate fall with cooked meals, warmer and more nourishing foods with higher protein and oil content.
Remember, food is medicine!
Ayurvedic Tips And Remedies For Optimal Digestion
- Eat 3 meals a day.
- Avoid unsuitable food combinations (according to Ayurveda) such as dairy and fish for example.
- No fresh food such as fruits with cooked meals as it will cause over fermentation and creation of ama (metabolic waste/toxins).
- Avoid refined sugar, remember sugar causes inflammation and feeds cancer cells.
- Avoid drinking iced water as it weakens the agni (metabolism or digestive fire) and natural digestion.
- Do not cook honey.
- Eat your largest meal at lunchtime.
Enjoy the inspirational moments that fall brings and apply that creative juice to your meals. More nourishing, well cooked and warmer meals will protect your health during this season and will also warm your heart.
Please consult a qualified Ayurvedic practitioner before implementing the above-mentioned Ayurvedic fall diet guidelines.