Unlike other cruciferous vegetables such as mustard greens, cauliflower or collard greens that fuse well with an array of spices and sauces, I prefer my bok choy simple. Perhaps, this has to do with how my taste buds were introduced to this slightly pungent, earthy, airy, yet, watery vegetable.
After coming home with a bag of freshly harvested baby artichokes from Palo Alto Farmer’s Market last Sunday, I was reminded that some fresh produce still remains seasonal. With year-round access to our favorite fruits and vegetables, sometimes remembering whats in and out of season can be a little challenging. Strolling through the Farmer’s market was a lovely way to reconnect with nature’s seasonal gifts, the farmers, and sunshine. While remembering that produce like fava beans, cherries, peaches, fresh peas and artichokes don’t come by daily. Seasonal produce still exist!
Daffodils, tulips, and hyacinth are popping up in backyards, street beds and random corners of neighborhoods. With their sparks of color, these flowering bulbs are a reminder that spring is upon us—and so is pollen! From the lens of Ayurveda, the body’s response to the seasonal shift can be indicative of the diet and lifestyle choices made in the prior season. What we did or did not do, ate or did not eat, or drank or did not drink in the winter can play a role in how the immune system will respond in the spring. Ayurveda & Spring Ayurveda refers to spring as kapha season. Kapha translates to “stick together”. Giving us insight into the qualities of this dosha—cold, sticky, heavy, slow and wet. After a dry winter season, kapha qualities bring balance to the environment. An increase in rainfall adds moisture to the air and soil. While more sun hours transforms snow into water and warms-up the earth. Inspiring hibernating bulbs to bloom. As the season shifts from winter to spring, the body, mind, …
It’s time to fall out of autumn and leap into spring! Soon, flowers will be blossoming to express the new season. A gentle, quarterly reminder from Mother Nature to start shifting lifestyle choices and harmonize with her spring energy. Generating heat and movement internally will support balancing the cold, wet and heavy qualities she exudes in the spring. While helping to prevent common spring imbalances such as congestion, sluggishness and stiffness. A natural antidote for producing internal warmth to break-up and move stagnation within the body are heating spices. The intoxicating flavors and aromas will lure the cook. While their medicinal magic will bless the meal with the ability to heal. Generally speaking, all spices can be enjoyed year round, simply by adjusting their quantity according to the season. Ayurveda, determines the seasonal recommendations based the spices’ inherent cooling or heating energy. Spices which foster heat, are recommended in the cold season—winter into early spring. The heat warms the cold and dries the wet qualities. Lightening up congestion not just in the chest but also in the gut. Helping to balance the …
Each spring the festival of Holi is celebrated in India. It signifies the welcoming of the harvest season, as well as new beginnings in our relationships and lives. Colored powder and water are tossed through the air. Everyone wears old clothes they don’t mind getting splashed on. No one walks away untainted or without a hue of vividness on their faces. It’s a scene of laughter and joy, as friends and strangers alike gather in the start of a literally and figuratively, new season. What a beautiful way to remind us that we always can make a fresh start. Here in the West, some of us have our annual spring cleaning to help us remove the clutter accumulated in our households over the winter hibernation months. It, too, signifies a new beginning. Not only does clearing our spaces create more physical room, but it also helps us to mentally prepare and embrace positive change. Below are three steps to creating your own spring cleaning ritual:
Seasonal Love Letters: Spring professes love to Asparagus Hi Spring! Hi Asparagus! You’re looking so lovely in the market these days. With your slightly sweet and slender stalks—it’s hard to resist picking you up! Your timing couldn’t be more perfect. With your astringent taste, you help remove the excess water that has accumulated in the body from the past season. Thanks for helping to detoxify, being a great source of folic acid, and helping remove heat from the body.
This image is a mirror image taken from Ayurveda, The Science of Healing by Dr. Vasant Lad Ever wonder why one day your tongue is red and other days it has a white coating? The tongue is a wealth of knowledge. Looking at a patients tongue is common practice in Ayurveda. It can give clues on mental, emotional and physical health through its size, shape, contour, texture, surface and color. A white-coating often indicates ama or toxins (toxins) in the body related to a kapha imbalance. Suggesting an accumulation of excess mucus, heavy foods, phelgm, sugar or undigested food. Here’s 5 tips on how to prevent a white-coated tongue or help reduce the white coating:
Fennel—a tall, aromatic plant, often found growing wild along California’s highways. The brightly colored yellow flowers, bulb, stalk, fronds, and even the seeds of this medicinal plant are edible. Considered to be a digestive aid by many cultures, this plant is also associated with longevity and strength. Some would say, that in fennel’s ability to helps us digest, we are able to better absorb, assimilate and eliminate effectively. Enabling us to become stronger and live longer healthier lives.
Maybe the word “Kapha” (pronounced Kah-fah) has been floating aroundyour ether, you’ve seen posts, taken a “what’s my dosha” quiz, you have a kapha imbalance, or you’re curious and want to know more. Well, hopefully, this post will explain what kapha is, how to recognize its qualities, and why understanding this seasonal dosha help you stay healthier during kapha season. What is a Dosha? To understand kapha, we first need to know that it is 1 of the 3 doshas in Ayurveda, a time-tested medical system from India. Doshas are particular patterns of energy that are expressed through physical, mental, and emotional characteristics. Each dosha—vata, pitta, and kapha—are composed of 2 of the 5 elements, or pancha mahabhutas. Which are considered to be the building blocks of the universe. Ether, space, fire, earth, and water are the 5 elements, which when paired, produce the 3 doshas. Doshas surround us and exist in every cell of our body. Although we are composed of all 3 doshas, each of us has a primary and secondary dosha. Similarly, each dosha has a primary function, …
Kapha season is here! Time for saunas, movement, massages, warming spices, green veggies, and the celebration of Spring. Late winter to early summer is when kapha (earth+water) season dominates the air. Cold temperatures have settled in and wetness from snow or rain are on the rise (we hope so in California). As the season shifts from Vata time (cold+dry) into kapha time (cold+wet), a time to shift our diet and behaviors to live with the season and maintain a healthy balance.
Read about the health benefits of cumin, why its a great spice to counter balance heating foods, and how to incorporate it into your next meal
A carminative spice is one that relieves gas or flatulence from the body. Yes, and ironically they are some of the most aromatic spices in your pantry. The ones that entice your appetite and release a feel good emotion because they smell so good.
Read about the great health benefits of black pepper of this staple spice and how to use it in your next meal.
Read about the wonderful health benefits of this aromatic and delicious spice and how to bring it into your daily life.