Kapha Season is here:)
Happy early spring, things are wonderful here in Glenora. The weather has been very temperamental; lots of rain/snow mix, but warm enough to start some spring greens, and spinach in the greenhouse. Feels so good and grounding to be working in the dirt, and to be planting the seeds for the summer to come.
The last month has been very busy, spending time and sharing energy with some wonderful workshops. The cooking class on February 27 was a huge success; our next one is March 13. It was a great group of people- and lots of fun. Planning a new menu for an April class. New yoga classes are beginning the end of March, these will be Hatha classes, suitable for all levels, see below for more information. I am still manifesting the Yoga and Meditation day, as well as a weekly meditation sit at my home. Open to any ideas you may have as well.
Although the days are getting longer and spring is in the air, it is still pretty cool and damp outside. Ayurvedically speaking spring is the season of Kapha, wet, earthy, cool and damp. Winter’s energy has settled into our bodies, causing the Kapha Dosha to accumulate (water and earth). This energy can affect us in many ways, from the onset of a cold and flu to feeling a bit sluggish in the body and the mind. After a long winter, it is time to bring some warmer, more active energy into the being.
There are many easy ways that we can get the kapha energy flowing, expanding its sweetness, while keeping its heaviness at bay.
- A great way to increase energy flow is through physical exercise; A brisk walk in the morning sun, energetic yoga asanas, like warrior, or even adding a few sun salutations to your daily yoga practice. Vigorous exercise will get the lymph moving in the body, helping to eliminate any congestion. It’s also a great way to stimulate digestion, and help to detoxify any ama that is built up in the body.
- Springtime/Kapha time, is also the perfect time of year for a dietary cleanse. A cleanse is a great way to stimulate digestion, creating a sense of lightness in the body, and affecting the being on more levels than just the physical. In Ayurveda, a cleanse is not a fast, it means eating a lighter, healthier and pure diet of easily digestible foods. Favor bitter, astringent and pungent tastes, these help to increase digestion and remove toxins. As in vata season, warm cooked foods are easier for the body to digest, especially during any cleansing. Millet and quinoa are great lighter grains, as is white basmati rice.
- Another easy way to warm up the body, and to keep digestion flowing is by drinking warm water throughout the day. Take a thermos to work and, try a warm tea, made with 1tsp fennel, ¼ tsp coriander seeds, and ¼ tsp cumin seeds, tasty and balancing to all of the doshas. If you have a sweet tooth, try cutting back your sugar intake and have a licorice tea, instead, sweet, warming, and satisfying.
Nettles are a green superfood growing somewhere close to you. Thought of as a weed by many, and shied away from because of their sting, this amazing plant is highly nutritious and very tasty. It’s so wonderful after a long cold winter, to see the little nettles poking up from the earth, bright green, and full of vitamins- a great sign that spring is here. Nettles are the highest source of iron that you can get from a plant source, and very high in Vitamin A and C. They have many minerals, and are 40 % protein, again very high for a plant. Being so nutrient dense they are great for strengthening the body, fighting disease, and giving a boost of energy. Nettles grow abundantly in many places, often on the edge of fields, and they especially like to grow next to blackberries. Be careful picking them, as they do sting, wear gloves long pants and long sleeve shirts. I usually just pinch the tops off. If the stem is getting tough, you can always remove it while cooking. Great to substitute for any green, nettles lose their sting as they cook. Rich in flavor, nice texture, and amazing taste, a wonderful springtime energy booster to any meal. Try making a fresh green juice out of them in the blender, or replace the basil with nettles in pesto. Yum:)
Stinging Nettle Soup
1 pound stinging nettles
2 teaspoons salt
1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
2 leeks, sliced thin
1/4 cup white basmati rice
4 cups vegetable broth or water
1 tbs fresh grated ginger
1 tsp cumin seeds
1/2 tsp fennel seeds
1/2 tsp turmeric
salt and pepper to taste
- Bring a large pot of water to a boil with 2 teaspoons of salt. Drop in the stinging nettles, and cook 1 to 2 minutes until they soften. This will remove most of the sting. Drain in a colander, and rinse with cold water. Trim off any tough stems, then chop coarsely.
- Heat the olive oil in a saucepan over medium-low heat, and stir in the ginger, leeks, cumin seeds, fennel seeds and turmeric Cook until the leeks have softened, about 5 minutes. Stir in the rice, broth or water, and chopped nettles. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to medium-low, cover, and simmer until the rice is tender, about 15 minutes. Puree the soup with an immersion blender, and season to taste with salt and pepper. Add more water if needed:)
Ginger Raisin Chutney
This Chutney is great for the spring time, very balancing to Kapha and Vata
1 Tbs Fresh Lime Juice
1/3 Cup Fresh Orange Juice
1/2 Cup Chopped Peeled Ginger Root
1/2 Cup Raisins
Combine ingredients in a food processor and grind to desired texture.
If raisins are dry soak for an hour before making
As the trees start to bud, and leaves start to open up to the fresh springtime sunlight, I thought it would be a wonderful time to practice tree pose. Grounding, energizing and opening. Imagine your favorite tree, and as you open your arms and your heart, visualize the strength and energy flowing through you.
Stand at the front of your mat in mountain pose. With your feet together or hip width apart take a moment to rest here, to feel your energy. Grounding down through all four corners of the feet, rolling your shoulders back so the heart opens, and letting the chin come down just slightly so that your neck is relaxed. Breathing deeply, connecting with the current moment.
When you are ready
- Shift your weight slightly onto the left foot, keeping the 4 corners of the foot in contact with the floor.
- Turn your right heel in towards the left ankle, coming onto the tips of the toes (right foot) Depending how you are feeling today, you can stay here, or move the sole of the right foot up to the inner left shin, the thigh or maybe even using your hands to place the right foot into the inner left groin, toes will be pointing to the floor.
- Find a focal point in front of you, something steady and solid.
- Bring your hands to heart center and take a few breaths here. How do you feel?
- Raise your arms overhead, shoulder width apart. Keeping your gaze steady, your energy grounding through your left foot, and your heart opening.
- Stay here for at least 5 breaths, longer if you can, eventually working up to a few minutes.
- Release on an exhale. Shake it out and then take yourself through the other side.
If you want to challenge yourself, try closing your eyes☺
Feel free to do this pose next to a wall for support.
This Month At Ananda Ayurveda
more to be added as the month goes on:)
Follow Your Bliss and Enjoy Yoga with Asrael- Thursday’s 7-8:30pm at Natasha’s Temple- beginning March 24th
A Class for all levels: from the beginner to the experienced yogi. We will flow with the breath, melt into the asanas, and open our hearts and our minds to the bliss of our being.
Drop Ins-$15 6 class series-$72
Ayurvedic Cooking Class
Sunday March 13, 11-2, The Hawthorn, Glenora
Only one spot left- look here for details:)
And as always,
Blissful Bodywork, Astrology Readings, Consultations, and Intuitive Readings
I wish you all a wonderful day ~ enjoy!