Living Ayurvedically means flowing with the seasons, as we transition into spring it's important to adjust our daily routines in line with the changing elements
In spring, as nature wakes up from its slumber during winter and the plants are exploding with new life; it’s an exciting time of the year but it’s important to honour this change of season. Ayurveda, associates spring with the kapha dosha and an increase in the water element.
Kapha is most prevalent in the rasa dhatu, aka the plasma and lymphatic system. After a winter of eating more sweet and savoury foods and probably less movement, you may see more signs of lymph congestion in spring. Such as an increase in phlegm, coughs, and colds, puffiness, sluggishness, lowered appetite, which are all signs of imbalanced kapha dosha.
One of the ways we can balance kapha in spring is by increasing the bitter taste *insert groans*. It’s almost like nature knows 😉 because now is the time to eat your spring greens! 🌱
Dandelions are particularly good for their bitterness, and here in the UK they used to be included in our diet far more.
Kapha has the qualities of heavy, oily, and slow, which is why the bitter taste in Ayurveda brings balance due to its qualities of cold, light, and dry. The bitter taste has an affinity for the liver, spleen, and pancreas, and interestingly, in Western herbalism, dandelions are known for their ability to reduce stress on the liver and support its capacity to produce bile among many other things!
Dandelion leaves are fairly easy to spot with their serrated edges, and very often will have their synonymous yellow flowers sprouting from the middle. If you're ever unsure of your ID then don't consume wild plants. Try a local foraging group or go with a friend until you're confident!
As with everything in this beautiful system, there is nuance to this and if you have a vata imbalance this information wouldn’t really apply to you because by balancing kapha you naturally increase vata. Seek help from a practitioner if you’re unsure about this.
Other ways to balance kapha in spring include:
Moving your lymph! Regular exercise has a myriad of health benefits, particularly in helping lymphatic drainage
Drink warm ginger tea🫖
No sleeping during the day, because it increases kapha
Dry brush your body before your shower twice a week to help with circulation
Drink cleavers water to support movement of lymphatic fluids
Add more pepper to your food
Eat more bitter foods (cooked leafy greens are an easy one), bonus points for picking dandelions! 🥬
Legs up the wall to help with circulation
Try a gentle Spring cleanse
Happy spring transition!