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Kapha Season Essentials: Exercise, Diet & Wellness Tips for Thriving This Winter Season
As we enter the winter season, the weather gets colder, the days get shorter, and it can feel more difficult than ever to maintain an active lifestyle. However, that means it’s more important than ever to engage in beauty and wellness practices that improve our health and spirits. In Ayurvedic tradition, winter is the season of kapha, making it vital to pacify the kapha and to maintain a healthy doshic balance. Given Ayurveda’s emphasis on the interconnectivity of mind, body, spirit and external environment, ith the onset of colder weather and darker days often induces feelings of lethargy or stagnation. During kapha season, it’s especially important to keep the body warm, nourished and hydrated, and to engage in practices that promote inner tranquility and calm.
Here are a few simple wellness tips for staying warm and healthy this winter—the Ayurvedic way.
Try Out Some Cold Weather-Friendly Exercise
The chilliness of winter mornings can make it harder for our bodies to maintain circulation and warmth. Practicing a few yoga stretches every morning can help boost circulation, energy and tranquility. Plus, the health and wellness benefits of yoga are numerous: research has shown that yoga increases bodily strength and flexibility, improves cardiovascular function, reduces stress and anxiety, and overall increases one’s quality of life, making it a practice all should adopt year-round!
If you’re new to yoga, you can start off with simple poses like locust pose and boat pose and build strength from there. We also have a guide to the most effective types of yoga practice for each dosha.
Spend Time With Your Loved Ones!
Some internal and emotional signs of kapha imbalance include feeling depression, loneliness and general stagnation. While maintaining physical warmth and being well-rested are vital to balancing our body temperature and keeping the kapha in check, our emotional warmth is just as important. Ayurveda recommends spending lots of time with your loved ones during this season—surround yourself with those whose warmth and care helps you stay grounded. Especially during the holiday season, giving small, meaningful and thoughtful gifts to the ones you love can help increase feelings of togetherness. (For those who are still looking for the perfect gift, we’ve curated a list of holiday specials sure to please any beauty and wellness lover in your life!)
Stay Healthy with Natural Ayurvedic Ingredients
Now more than ever, it’s vital to keep the body warm during kapha season to fight off illness and imbalance. Drinking herbal teas with ginger, cinnamon or clove is a great way to start. We also recommend cultivating a diet full of steamed vegetables, warm soups and foods rich in antioxidants. Here is a list of Ayurvedic superfoods one can enjoy during the kapha season.
We’ve also posted several recipes designed to promote warmth, energy and vitality during the kapha season, including a quinoa, walnut & date cereal for breakfast and a warming vegetable ragout for lunch or dinner.
Especially at the end of an extremely challenging, isolating year—and especially given the continuing, urgent necessity of looking carefully after our health and the health of those around us—it’s more important now than ever to maintain our physical and mental wellbeing. Adopting a few simple practices, like taking a few moments each day to practice deep breathing or making sure to prioritize spending time with loved ones, can make all the difference in helping us thrive this winter.
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