Beat The Burnout: How To Embrace Fall The Ayurvedic Way
As the blazing summer sun gives way to breezy fall days, it's the perfect time for an Ayurvedic reset.
In Ayurveda, Pitta represents the fire and heat of summer. Come fall, the cool, dry air and shorter days should help clear excess Pitta dosha from the body. If we enter the season with excess Pitta, though, we can combust into symptoms like irritability, inflammation, rashes, and fatigue. If we don't let go of it, we can go through fall feeling anxious, overwhelmed, and burnt out.
Use the following restorative rituals to flow from summer to fall feeling refreshed, renewed, and ready to embrace the beauty of autumn.
Calm Pitta with cooling foods
When fall begins, even if you live in a warm climate, it's beneficial to gently transition your cooking for the new season. Consider limiting Pitta-aggravating foods like spicy dishes, caffeinated drinks, and alcohol. Instead, favor cooling foods like juicy berries, peppermint, cucumber, coconut, and aloe vera.
Pitta-reducing herbs like fennel, coriander, and cardamom are excellent spices to cook with during this time, too. Prepare light, astringent foods like kitchari to cleanse the body without overburdening digestion.
As the weather cools, transition to warm, cooked cereal grains like oats, quinoa, and amaranth to boost immunity without heating up the body. Root vegetables like sweet potatoes, carrots, and beets provide grounding energy during this time.
Do gentle cleansing rituals
Here are a few simple Pitta-clearing routines and rituals I recommend for removing excess heat come fall:
- Start your day with a glass of room-temperature lemon water to stimulate digestion.
- Try oil pulling: Swish a spoonful of coconut or sesame oil to soothe your mouth.
- Dry brush your skin before showering to slough off dead cells and improve circulation.
- Give yourself a gentle massage with coconut oil and a few drops of soothing essential oils like sandalwood or lavender.
- Do yoga poses that open the hips and soothe hot emotions, like bound angle pose, moon salutations, or a gentle forward bend.
- Try alternate nostril breathing to introduce a cooling sensation in the body.
Balancing a busy Pitta requires resting without overstimulation. Allow yourself electronic-free evenings (no screens after dinner) to unwind, and fill the time with some of the rituals above instead: Diffuse soothing essential oils, or give yourself a luxurious self-massage with cooling coconut oil before bed.
This is also a wonderful season to spend time in nature without digital devices, schedule social media and news fasts on certain days of the week or month, and take relaxing Epsom salt or oat baths. All of these simple rituals will help release the excess summer heat accumulation in our tissues and prepare our bodies for the new season ahead.
A sample daily schedule
This sample schedule ties everything together to help you balance Pitta and Vata and navigate autumn with stability, inspiration, and creativity. We can set ourselves up to have a more present, joyful, centered fall and holiday season just by using Ayurveda's tool kit.
- Eat a light lunch like kitchari with seasonal veggies
- Take a short walk or do restorative yoga
- Sip on refreshing coconut water
- Have an early, light dinner with brothy soup
- Dry brush then take an Epsom salt bath
- Drink tea to relax the mind and body
- Self-massage with coconut oil
- Diffuse lavender oil
- Meditate before bedtime
According to Ayurveda, heat accumulates in the body during summer—and it needs to be released before and during fall. By cleansing excess Pitta using these simple rituals, you can help your body transition smoothly and avoid pesky seasonal burnout.
Dr. Shivani is an Ayurvedic practitioner and expert in fusing Eastern and Western practices that help our bodies achieve equilibrium. She completed her Master’s in Ayurvedic Sciences and her PhD on Turmeric.
Her passion is teaching at-home remedies to reduce inflammation naturally will help you enjoy more energy, less brain fog, less pain, and ultimately achieve vibrant health. Dr. Shivani Gupta has practiced Ayurvedic medicine for over 20 years and her approach is to show you the tools in your toolkit, so you can reach for them every time you need them. She is also the founder of Fusionary Formulas, an Ayurvedic company that helps people with inflammation and pain.