Date: June 4, 2007
According to ayurveda, the total lifespan of an individual can be defined in terms of the three doshas or ayurvedic principles: childhood is governed by Kapha dosha, youth and adulthood by Pitta and mature adulthood, the last trimester, by Vata dosha. Menopause marks the transition from the Pitta phase of life to the Vata phase of life for most women.
“During the transition, women tend to experience imbalance in both Pitta and Vata,” explains The Council of Maharishi Ayurveda Physicians. “As a result, they can exhibit the symptoms of an imbalanced Pitta - skin eruptions, depressed emotions, irritability, hot flashes and excess stomach acid, for example, as well as the signs of an imbalanced Vata - vaginal dryness, a clouded mind and thin dry skin, to name a few. To have a smooth transition, it is important to find out which of these two doshas is out of balance and correct that imbalance with a proper diet and routine, and herbal supplements as support.”
Some tips for balancing Vata:
A Vata balancing diet includes more of the sweet, sour and salty tastes, and should contain more warm, unctuous foods. Eat three regular meals every day, with the heaviest meal being lunch. Include a little Ghee in your diet and cook with Vata balancing spices. Drink lots of water through the day.
With the too-much-to-do, too-little-time syndrome ruling the lives of many women these days, going to bed at a reasonable hour each night appears a luxury. If you are one of those women who habitually stays up late to catch up on work, you might want to consider the fact that one of the simplest ways to help keep Vata dosha in balance is to try to go to bed early: definitely no later than 10 p.m. Between 6 p.m. and 10 p.m. is the Kapha dominated time of day, which means the body is settling down and the brain is calming down naturally. So if you go to sleep during that time you tend to have deeper, more restful sleep.
Introduce the pleasurable experience of abhyanga, the ayurvedic self-massage, into your daily routine. The daily warm oil massage is best done in the morning, before your bath or shower. It pacifies both Vata and Pitta doshas, helps increase resistance to day-to-day stress, enhances circulation and lubrication, and recharges you for the day ahead.
Some tips for balancing Pitta:
In general, a Pitta pacifying diet would be one that is rich in vegetables–not tomatoes and spinach, which are two very heating vegetables, but most other vegetables, whole grains, sweet juicy fruits, especially pears, plums and other non-citrus fruits. Drink plenty of water through the day.
Eat meals on time. Lunch, the main meal of the day, should ideally be eaten around mid-day, when the digestive fire is at its natural peak.
To keep Sadhaka Pitta, which governs the emotions, in balance, take an herbal formula that contains Arjuna, the ayurvedic herb famous for its positive influence on the heart. In combination with other herbs, Arjuna in this formula helps promote better mind/body/heart coordination and nourishes the heart and mind.
Internal cleansing helps flush toxins out of the body gently, helping to keep the skin clear and healthy. In conjunction with lots of water, an internal cleansing program can help prevent many Pitta related problems during the transition.
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