The winter season in Kerala begins at the end of November and continues up to the end of February. The temperatures range from 18 degree Celsius to not more than 30 degree Celsius. The humidity is low making the climate much dry and the chances of rainfall is also very low. Despite such low temperatures Kerala is a hub to huge natural resources and is always green. Winter season ayurvedic treatment in Kerala is abundant due to the huge availability of herbs and greenery.
With the chills of winter knocking at our doorsteps, the world is enchanted by the cold climate. Although this time of the year is very beautiful in many ways, it is indeed a more conscious time for all living beings. In this cold season we try to retain all our energy and keep ourselves warm with food and clothes. There is special care to be taken for the well being of our body. In the winter the skin becomes dry, our metabolic rate is lowered, there is an increased risk of catching a cold and other diseases and also there is a need for food that shall get us through the cold of the long winter nights.
Winter is considered by many as the season of cold and flu. It is believed that the immunity of our body is at vast compromise during the run of the season of winter. Ayurvedic studies show that despite this popular belief, winter is indeed the season that can nourish our immunity systems and prepare our mind and body for the rest of the forthcoming year. We as humans cannot hibernate like animals so we need to focus more on keeping ourselves warm by means of food, shelter and clothing.
In ayurvedic terms this season is called Kapha season. When the Kapha dosha is balanced it provides us with firm synchronization between our body and mind. In ayurvedic terms, immunity is referred to as Bala, which is the combination of both physical and mental immunity. Everything from our food habits, sleeping pattern, work life and personal headspace affects the proper functioning of our Bala. It is however very much possible to maintain the consistency in the level of immunity throughout this harsh season by implementing some ayurvedic tips for the winter in Kerala.
In Ayurveda there are three levels of immunity, namely, sahaj or inherited, kalaj or seasonal and yuktikrit or established. Ayurveda prioritized the second level of immunity or kalaj during the season of winter. Here are a few ayurvedic tips to keep in mind-
Eating warm foods
During the winter season Ayurveda immunity boosting food should be a part of the diet. Milk, cheese, fruits and vegetables are the best choice to boost immunity that will help fight the cold. While cooking spices like pepper. garlic and ginger can be used in soups and curry to provide more immunity. Meats like those or chicken and turkey are excellent sources of protein and help to keep the body warm during the cold. Vegetables and meat soup are a great replacement for friend snacks during winter. They tend to provide warmth alongside increasing immunity.
These ayurvedic herbs are provided by the rich natural resources that bloom during the winter in Kerala. Tea and coffee are a common drink of choice during the winter season. Tea combined with ginger has added benefits. For staple food whole grains such as oatmeal, barley or cornmeal are a good choice to begin the day with. They can be combined with more winter fruits like raisins or nuts for added benefits. Citrus fruits are a must in the diet, for the well being of the skin and also the immunity system.
One of the most crucial of all the Ayurvedic tips for the Winter in Kerala is exercising. Ayurveda promotes exercising of both the body and the mind. It is of even more importance during the winter season to boost our resistance and proper functioning of our body. It is advised for all and any individual to practice some sort of exercise at the beginning of each day. One can choose Yoga for excellent results or can tend to general cardiovascular exercises. Kerala during the winter has lovely neighbourhoods that are surrounded by nature, perfect for a jog in the morning. Exercise is to be performed early in the morning time to the best results.
One can opt to exercise in an empty stomach or a light meal before exercising. With this simple regime of exercising, the body will improve its blood circulation and hence provide a better immunity. The metabolic rate is also maintained by exercising. The different asanas in yoga provide strength and immunity to specific parts of the body and mind. Those with particular ailments can practise the required asanas for added benefit. Some of the yoga movements that you can practice during winter are: Supta Baddha Konasana or Reclining Bound Angle Pose, Balasana or Child’s Pose, Sucirandhrasana or Eye of the Needle Pose, Anjaneyasana or Low Lunge, Prasarita Padottanasana or Wide-Legged Forward Bend, and Eka Pada Rajakapotasana or Pigeon Pose.
Keep yourself clean
Apart from being a dry season, winter is also a mucky season. Dust and dirt from the air tends to accumulate in our hair and body. The lack of moisturization can lead them to affect our skin and hair directly. Ayurvedic skin ointment and oils are a good option to keep yourself protected. Due to less sweating it seems that our body tends to keep more clean during the winter, but in reality that is not the case. So it is advisable to shower everyday with an antibacterial cleansing agent and moisturize the skin and hair after the shower.
Drinking water is one of the most important parts of self-care during the winter season. Keeping the body hydrated has numerous benefits, from better digestion to blood circulation and keeping the skin and the mind healthy. Without proper water intake, the skin will begin to crack more and food will not be digested. The excretory system will function abnormally and thus will make you sick. At least 4 to 5 litres of water intake is a must during the winter season to keep healthy. Water intake also helps in breaking down fats and their circulation throughout the body to keep us warm during the cold season. This very simple form of personal winter season ayurvedic treatment in Kerala can result to be extremely fruitful for your wellbeing.
Using ayurvedic herbs and treatments
For added immunity, using ayurvedic herbs and potions are a must during the winter. Over the course of a thousand year, several natural formulas have been utilized to create oil, ointments and edibles that will help the mind and body during the cold of winter. For instance, the use of sinatic oil can provide relief from Sinusitis, Rhinitis, Tonsillitis and other respiratory tract infections.
Triphala is an excellent choice of remedy that will help with immunity as well as digestion. With the advent of winter, certain physical deformities tend to increase. Ayurvedic treatments can be used to reduce the symptoms to provide more relief. Some such treatments are, Lepa – Involves the application of external herbal pastes on the affected region, Abhyanga – An age-old practice that involves massaging the joints with medicinal oilParisheka – Showering or sprinkling herbal/medicinal liquids/milk over the pain areas, Avagahana – Avagahana involves dipping parts or joints in medicinal liquids or milk, Upanaha – The process of placing a heated moist herbal mass on the affected area.
These ayurvedic winter tips will help you get through the winter season easily and provide more rejuvenation for the mind and body. It is better to look at this season more as a season of recovery than a season of calamity. All these tips will ensure the loveliest experiences of winter in Kerala.