Summer is in full swing and you’re skin knows it.Before you rush out to sample the joys of summer sun worship, make sure you are following a diet and a routine that will help keep your Pitta dosha in balance.
According to ayurveda, every individual is a unique combination of the three doshas: Vata, Pitta and Kapha. Vata is mainly air and space, Pitta fire and water and Kapha water and earth. These doshas govern the seasons of the year, with Pitta, the fire element, ruling the hot summer months. During the summer, even if you do not have a lot of Pitta in your make-up, you may find that you need to take steps to appease Pitta to stay and feel healthy and balanced. Sure, this is important for your overall health, but it’s of particular value if you are looking to have radiant skin!
Keep your skin looking beautiful all summer long with these 11 ayurvedic tips:
- Drink plenty of water.To balance Pitta, choose cooling herbs and spices such as mint, cardamom and fennel. Stay away from iced beverages because they slow down digestion and can create toxins that can lead to skin breakouts.
- Eat Pitta-balancing fruits, vegetables and herbs, which supply the skin with essential nutrients and come with free-radical fighting antioxidant properties while they help keep your skin cool. Carrots, lettuce, summer squash such as zucchini, celery, asparagus and leafy greens are good vegetable choices. Sweet juicy fruits such as pears, grapes, watermelon and mangoes offer nourishment while also cleansing the body. Try adding fresh ginger, cilantro, mint or basil to your favorite dishes for an added flavor that won’t aggravate Pitta dosha.
- Go easy on spicy or sour foods, especially if you plan to go out and enjoy the sun for the day, to keep your skin from breaking out or getting inflamed.
- Got Milk? Milk is a cooling, Pitta-pacifying beverage that also supplies nutrients to your skin and helps to keep it from drying out. Drink a cup of milk every day; combine milk with ingredients like almond meal and rose water to make a Pitta-balancing skin cleanser.
- Get plenty of rest each night. Get to bed early and awake early for a clearer complexion and sparkling eyes.
- Pitta dosha governs the heart and emotions. When you feel stressed, angry or frustrated, your skin will show it over time as furrows and small lines and breakouts. Practice calming yoga poses or meditation to stay serene and help your body and mind manage stress. Use Pitta-balancing essential oils, such as rose, sandalwood and lavender to keep your mind and heart balanced.
- Have a cleansing routine, morning and night. Use a non-soap based gentle cleanser that will deep cleanse without drying out the skin. A good cleansing mix for dry/normal skin can be made with almond meal, oatmeal, milk and rosewater. For oily skin, try oatmeal with yogurt and a little lemon and neem powder. If you use a toner, look for one without alcohol.
- Keep your skin nourished with an herbal moisturizer. Look for ayurvedic formulas that contain skin-friendly herbs such as sandalwood, turmeric, brahmi, amla and aloe vera. At least once a week, treat yourself to a fruit or vegetable mask. Cucumbers, avocados, apricots and papayas lend themselves well to these homemade masks. Puree the fruit or vegetable and blend it with some yogurt, honey, oatmeal and lemon juice (for oily skin) or rosewater (for dry skin) and apply evenly to the face. Let dry for 15 to 20 minutes and then rinse off with lukewarm water.
- Do not go out during the hottest parts of the day, (generally between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m.).If you exercise outdoors, do it early in the morning.
- Don’t forget to wear sunscreen, lip protection, sunglasses and that broad-brimmed hat when you go out during peak sunning.