Monthly Archives: October 2013

Vata Menu

Yo! I get countless requests for vata menus. Ya’ll are like, “What should I eeeeeeeeat?” I have emailed (typing it out new on each email – definitely not the fastest) suggestions probably 100+ times. So, by popular demand, here is a very simple vata menu! You can click on it to see it more clearly and print it too – yeeehaaaw!

If you are a typical vata, having a little menu will help you decide, commit, and plan your meals (Hello, vata! I am structure! Learn to love me.). Get creative too. There are LOTS of great meals for vata. JoyfulBelly is a great resource for Ayurvedic menus per your dosha, so play around there too. In general, carb it up, keep it warm, keep it goopy, mildly spicy, not much meat.

Now, the pittas are probably thinking, “Wait! Where’s mine!? Me too, me too!” The kaphas are probably thinking, “Oh this is so lovely! Maybe there will be one for kaphas someday. In the meantime, I will wait while smiling.” Yes pittas and kaphas, I am creating yours too. Stay tuned! Meantime, who has questions about this menu? Comments? Love it? Am I missing anything? Lemme know! *high kick!* XOXO!

 vata_menu

Prakruti vs. Vikruti

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Hi Monica. So the different doshas govern the different seasons and those found to be dominant in me govern me in much the same way? But what if one finds himself to be 100% pitta. Would 100% pitta be the balance point for him? If he were hot in summer, then he would be in his natural balanced state and therefore not seek to cool…(?) I guess I am still unclear on ones place of balance. Is it at his dosha combination, to which he must seek to return whenever he strays from it, or at a place that might soothe the extremes of his dosha combination? So to what dosha belongs the trait of not registering anything unless you are convinced you got it one hundred percent… :) Thanks Monica. Ilan.

Ilan, this is such a rad question(s). Definitely worth writing, graphing, and chatting about for all to see! When I was first learning Ayurveda, dosha balance was clear as day! And then as I learned more, my brain quickly turned into a mudball of dosha confusion. Hopefully these little graphs will help. When we are born, our prakruti is our natural balance. It’s pure, it’s us. It’s an individual mixture of doshas unique to each of us. So, prakruti is our unique balance and perfect health. See this sample below. This is a vata-pitta person in equal amounts with a little bit of kapha. This is their prakruti, their born-in doshic balance. Get it? Ok…

 

Prakruti_graph…then we start living. We choose things, do things, eat things, and experiencing things which can change our make up. When we deviate from our prakruti, it’s called vikruti, which basically means imbalance. Per your question specifically, the 100% pitta person in summer will be given even MORE heat from the season…pushing that 100% pitta person OVER 100%. So they need to stay cool, to keep their 100%. Does that make sense?

Per this example, vata season may have increased this person’s vata, which also reduces their pitta and kapha. A myriad of things can increase a dosha. Maybe they ate vata increasing foods, or work too much, have a very busy schedule and are lacking sleep. We pay close attention to seasons particularly because we are influenced and driven by the nature around us, which is why we try to balance the dosha of that season We can’t control the season, but we can control our behavior so we don’t go vata, pitta or kapha crazy. Notice when one goes up, the others go down. 

Vikruti_graph

So the goal is, perfect health right? Perfect health is maintaining your unique balance throughout life! Perfect health is your prakruti – you always want to be, there. The way to maintain balance is to mind the nature that surrounds us (seasons), the food we eat, the company we keep, and the lifestyle we lead. In a nutshell, anyway :) Hope this helps??? Let me know! Also, if you guys want to draw little prakruti and vikruti charts of YOU, take a pic with your smart phone and email them to me. I’ll post them up! :) Fun, hey!? XOXO!

Perfect_Health_graph

Bit of Wisdom {51}

A thought for the weekend

If you are not getting what you have been wishing for…ask yourself if you are really ready to RECEIVE it. If you are not ready, that’s ok, the Universe will wait for you. But if you are, open your heart and mind. Be ready to receive a showering of your wishes and more. XO!

 

Ayurvedic Travel

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I travel a lot for work lately and have had a hard time balancing.  I’m a Vata-Pitta with Kapha imbalances.  I have autoimmune stuff which also means gluten free, dairy free, almond, peanut, egg free living.  I’m vegetarian by preference but eat fish once in a while when I can’t get a sufficient meal or it’s what my mom serves at Christmas. ;) Anyhow, as you probably know from travel, much of what’s good for balancing is not GF/DF/Veg.  Lately though, have had severe bloating/weight gain, cystic acne (along jawline), and constipation.  My diet is mostly vegetables, salads, fruits, nuts, seeds, dried fruits…. what’s a gal to do?!

Hi Kasi!

Thanks for your question and I’m sorry the traveling is taking it’s toll on you! In general, traveling is very vata increasing. Flying, specifically, is vata-increasing because you are high up in the air (vata is made of air and space), you are moving super fast, it’s cold up there, and the air is thin and dry. Hellooooo, all those things are vata! Not to mention, being away from home shakes our ground because it’s not home. Too much time zipping here and there will definitely show you signs of vata imbalance and possibly stress (acne) too.

My biggest tips while traveling are:

• Do full-body warm oil massages daily with long strokes on the long bones and circles around the joints. {Take a small bottle of oil with you, use the coffee pot in the hotel room to get hot water – brew nothing and let the water run through – place the oil bottle in it to warm the oil}
• Or, get oil massages from a professional while you travel! If the hotel has them or if you can find a place they recommend, this is crucial for you. It’s not a luxury, it’s a must.
• If you are open to having ghee, have 1 tsp or 1 tbsp ghee in a small glass of warm water first thing in the morning.
• Travel with prunes, soak 3-4 of them over night and eat in the morning on empty stomach, daily until you are regular. You can drink lots of warm water and tea until you poop (should be 3-4 hours later). Don’t eat anything else until you go.
• No salads or raw vegetables. They can cause constipation and are vata-aggravating. Instead choose steamed veggies when dining out and adding sauce will help keep you satisfied and nourished.
• Fresh fruits, steamed veggies, rice bowls or soups, and warm foods will be best. Almonds are a great snack. Dried fruit can be also, just eat them separately instead of in a trail mix — it’s easier on digestion.
• Drink tons of water, all day. Drink more than you think you need and no ice (vata-aggravating).
• Do a daily brisk walk for 20-30 minutes to get your digestive fire going.
• And if you are not hungry, don’t eat. Skip a meal to give your digestion a chance to catch up.

All that said, really make sure your veggies and fruits are cooked for now. Salads and raw veggies will bloat you like nobody’s business. Make sure you have warm, moist foods like veggie dishes with rice and sauce, soups, baked apples, good fats in meals and herbal teas! Eating this way will satiate you so you eat less. It will also reduce bloating because your foods are easier to digest. Try this and let me know if you start to feel better!!