Ayurvedic seasonal eating

I picked some of these apples and grapes (pictured) from my family’s home in Utah this weekend, and to me, there is nothing better and nothing more rewarding than being able to eat homegrown, organic fruits.  They just taste so much better.

I’ve spent some time studying Ayurveda over the years and one thing that has stuck with me recently in my own personal Ayurvedic studies is the importance of eating seasonal fruits and vegetables.  Not only is it more cost effective to eat seasonal produce, but seasonal eating is believed to also help boost your digestion, in addition to balancing out your doshas.

Before I go any further, for those who don’t know, Ayurveda is a sister to yoga and they share the same Vedic roots.  It is essentially an ancient, natural system of medicine that originated in India thousands of years ago.  It guides individuals on how to take care of their bodies, such as through certain beauty regimens and eating habits.  

Under Ayurvedic principles, when you eat fresh, seasonal fruit, for example, it is easier to digest and it is believed to contain more “prana” or “life force” in comparison to non-seasonal fruits.  The older the fruit is, the less “prana” it contains, which can make your digestive system work more slowly.  This same Ayurvedic principle can be applied to other seasonal foods, such as vegetables and herbs.  The fresher it is, the more “life force” it has.

Also, eating seasonally is believed to help balance out your doshas (Vata, Pitta and Kapha).  So if you have accumulated too much of one dosha in a prior season, then you can balance your body out by eating in accordance with the present season.  Pretty interesting stuff!  It’s complex, but fun to learn.  To read more about doshas and Ayurveda, check out this article.

I think for me, what has changed since studying these Ayurvedic principles, is to really take advantage of the natural produce that each season offers.  The Ayurvedic guidelines for eating change throughout the year, with each season, and in general, they can help to balance out not only our bodies, but our minds, as well.  When we are eating well, our bodies and minds work better also.  To learn more about Ayurvedic seasonal eating principles, give this article a read.