• Abbie Marshall

Congested, lethargic, low appetite? Time to balance Kapha!


Why you need a Seasonal Routine Ayurveda works on the principle that like increases like and this also applies to the seasons. Each season brings different qualities, it may be hot, dry, cold, wet or windy and each of these qualities either aggravate or pacify the Doshas. If you have a Kapha constitution or imbalance, it is important to know that cool, wet and static weather is the most aggravating and warm, dry, mobile weather is pacifying. This generally means you will have to very strict with your Kapha pacifying foods and routine during late winter and Spring as this is the most likely time for Kapha related problems to develop or be aggravated further. Read Introducing Kapha Dosha to recap on all things Kapha. Organs and conditions aggravated by Kapha dosha When Kapha is out of balance areas that are most commonly effected are;

  • Sinus and/or chest congestion

  • Coated tongue

  • Fluid retention

  • Feelings of tiredness and heaviness

  • Weight gain

  • Low appetite and sluggish metabolism

  • Excess Mucous and or saliva

  • High cholesterol and/or blood sugar

  • Depression

  • Nausea

  • Itchiness

  • Allergies and hay fever

Note: Just because it is a Kapha aggravating season does not mean you will only get a Kapha related condition! This is determined by your UNIQUE constitution... Some doshas are actually balanced by the cooler damp weather and therefore will not need to follow the winter routine as strictly.

How to balance Kapha

  • Reduce your fat intake and avoid fast and fried foods

  • Avoid iced drinks and sweets

  • Reduce intake of water (especially if your constitution is Kapha, not required if your constitution is Vata).

  • Wake early (before dawn), sleep less, and avoid sleeping in the day

  • Get plenty of physical exercise every day

  • Perform activities that stimulate and energize the body and mind, and build physical and mental heat

  • Allow for excitement and challenge and variety in life to break away from stagnation and clinging to old ways of thinking and behaving

  • Keep warm and dry

  • Udwartanam or friction massage and dry body brushing are helpful and stimulating, especially if you are prone to cellulite.

  • Tongue scrapping

  • Dhumapana or herbal smoke inhalation which is particularly helpful with sinus congestion

  • Kapha accumulates in the body during late winter and spring. So at these times of year you feel more lethargic and heavy so aim to be more active, keep warm, and keep food warm, light and dry.

  • Pungent, bitter and astringent tastes reduce Kapha. Sweet, sour and salty tastes increase Kapha and are best kept to a minimum.

  • Kapha has the properties of cold, heavy, oily, smooth and slow. Therefore the best way to balance excess Kapha is to choose food and lifestyle activities that are warming, light, drying, rough and quick.

  • Using spices and herbs daily in cooking is a great way to promote health, here some options for pacifying Kapha; Turmeric, cloves, coriander, Black Pepper, Cumin, Nutmeg, Garlic, Cinnamon, Asafoetida, Mustard, Ginger, Black Sesame, Honey, Saffron, Dill, Fennel, Curry Leaf, Honey, Sesame Oil, Castor Oil, Mustard Oil.

  • Many grains increase Kapha (millet and quinoa are OK), all nuts increase Kapha, all oils increase Kapha except mustard oil, all dairy increases Kapha. Kapha should avoid all sweeteners except honey. Avoid condiments except mustard (no vinegar, salt, olives, chocolate or mayonnaise).

Essential oils that can help to balance Kapha; When selecting oils to support you remember that each oil or oil blend serves a different purpose and supports the body in different ways. Some oils that are helpful to balance Kapha in the body are;

  • Stimulating oils such as Cypress, Peppermint, Pine, Eucalyptus

  • Spices and herbs like Cardamom, Ginger, Fennel, Cinnamon, Nutmeg, Thyme, Black Pepper, Juniper, Rosemary, Basil, Clove

  • Citrus oils such as Lemon, Lime, Lemongrass

  • Resins such as Frankincense, Myrrh

  • Blends: Raven, DiGize, En-R-Gee, Aromaease, Clarity and R.C.

To learn more about essential oils and book your FREE Wellness Consult get in touch.

Yoga Asana Kapha is a constitution that can easily gain weight, suffer from feelings of lethargy and tiredness and a sluggish digestive system. In order to bring about balance and prevent aggravation of Kapha dosha always choose strong poses and work at a pace that is vigorous, warming and stimulating.

It is important to note that the main sites of Kapha are chest and stomach yoga exercises that open the chest and stimulate the stomach are particularly helpful. Sun Salutation (Surya Namaskar) Sun salutation is a great sequence to start the day, Kapha constitutions should work through the series at a vigorous pace and repeat up to 20 times. This will increase warmth, improve flexibility and focus the mind. After the sun salutation you may add some other poses of your choice.

Pranayama (Breathing Exercise) to balance Kapha

​Pranayama is a branch of yoga that involves controlling the breath, naturally the most beneficial pranayama for balancing Kapha are those that are warming, invigorating and stimulate digestion. Here are a few Pranayama to consider;

  • Forehead Shinning Breath (Kaphalabhati) – generates heat, adds lustre to the face, and improves digestion and weight loss.

  • Right Nostril Breathing (Pingala) – Increase energy focus and clarity as well as being warming.

  • Ujjayi (Ocean Breath) – detoxifying, removes phlegm, good for thyroid, controls snoring, enhances the capacity of the digestive and respiratory systems.

  • Bellows Breath (Bhastrika) – Invigorating, stimulates digestive system and metabolism and may assist with weight loss.

Starter Kit and ComplementaryWellness Consult

To learn how you can infuse your life with essential oils or purchase your very own 'Starter Kit' click here or contact me for your complementary Wellness Consult if you would like to discuss your options!

I look forward to working with you soon.

This information is not intended to diagnose, treat or cure. It is for informational/educational purposes only, and provides Ayurvedic insight about how you can best support your body through seasonal changes. Always consult your health care professional.

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The content on this website is not intended to diagnose or treat or cure any ailment, disease or injury. It is intended to inform, educate & empower.

Please consult with your health care professional & then make your own informed decisions.

© 2016 by Abbie Marshall.

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