Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Ayurveda, Summer and Raw Food

I've been interested in Ayurveda for quite some time. I bought a book from the bargain table at Barnes and Nobel a few years ago, but I couldn't quite figure it out. It wasn't until I saw John Douillard speak last year that I was able to understand it. He has sort of "westernized" Ayurveda for Americans, and I recommend his book The Three Season Diet. He's also a great speaker, so if you ever get a chance to hear him speak, go for it!

After taking his quiz (which can be found here), I discovered that I am a Pitta/Vata type. Pittas tend to be pale with light coloring, have average sized body frames and have an aversion to hot weather, which are traits I do have. They can also can be competitive and have short tempers, which isn't me at all. My temperament is that of a Vata: restless, prone to anxiety and artistic. But it's the Pitta characteristics that I really take heed to, especially around this time of the year, because I really don't do well in the heat at all. I realize it makes me seem extremely uncool (figuratively and literally), but summer is my least favorite season. (There, I admitted it.) I can't think straight, I feel sluggish, I'm always drenched in sweat and I'm usually completely miserable. Autumn is my favorite season, and I always feel my best then. I don't even really mind cold winters, as long as I don't have to drive in the snow!

So in order to stay balanced this summer, I've been eating a lot more raw food, as you may have already noticed. Raw food helps me keep cool since it's not cooked, and it keeps my house cool since I don't have to turn the oven on, so it's perfect! Lately I've been having a smoothie with greens and fruit for breakfast, a salad for lunch, and then something creative from one of my cookbooks for dinner. I've also been snacking on kale chips. Lots and lots of kale chips. I have been eating some cooked food here and there, but I haven't really wanted anything cooked lately.

A raw food diet can increase your energy, improve the appearance of your skin, give you better digestion, help you lose weight and reduce your risk for chronic disease. If you're interested in learning more about raw food, I recommend the book Becoming Raw by Brenda Davis and Vesanto Melina and the film Simply Raw: Reversing Diabetes in 30 Days. This is the perfect time of year to start experimenting with raw, even if it means just eating more salad and fruit!

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1 comment:

  1. i am a P/V also and i just started doing the same thing. raw food makes me feel better. lots of smoothies and salads :) i also just bought a book on Ayurvedic Nutrition called Perfect Balance.