Regimen for Summer

Staying Cool This Summer


Ah, along comes Summer, a season with its own personality that brings along with it heat, brightness, sharpness, intensity and transformative nature. The qualities of summer in the atmosphere are due in part to the sun’s alignment with the earth as it plays its part in evaporating the moisture from the earth. This action causes an increase in Pitta (predominantly fire element) in our environment and in our minds and bodies.

Depending on what our personal constitutions and imbalances are, Summer may be kind to us, but it may also aggravate us. We may enjoy the heat and warmth from the summer rays and feel harmonious and balanced, but we may also experience some rather unpleasant occurrences such as; excessive sweating, heart burn, acid reflux, acne, blisters among others. Highly emotional folks may also experience increased irritability, restlessness and anger. The key is to listen to our minds and bodies, and make adjustments to seasonal changes with appropriate diet and lifestyle choices so that we can feel balanced and harmonious.

Remember mother nature changes around us and within us with each season, so we have compiled the following “Summer Tips List” to help you stay cool and collected during this fiery Summer season.



Seasonal Routine for Summer

The basic attributes of summer correspond to the qualities of pitta dosha. Hence, summer aggravates pitta and the routine should naturally be a pitta-soothing one.

Morning Routine

Summer mornings are usually pleasant, so one should wake up at around 5 AM and brush the teeth with a bitter and astringent flavored toothpaste, made from herbs such as neem and mint. Brushing the teeth with bitter and astringent herbs helps to pacify pitta and freshen the mouth. After brushing, scrape the tongue with a copper or stainless steel tongue scraper. Next, take a mouthful of room temperature coconut oil and slowly swish it for a couple of minutes, before spitting it out. After rinsing the mouth, drink a glass of room temperature water. 


Bitter Herbs & Ghee

Ghee is a pitta pacifying substance that is useful in summer and bitter ghee (called tikta ghrita) is especially cooling, as it contains a number of bitter herbs, including neem. Ayurvedic literature says that taking ½ teaspoon of bitter ghee on an empty stomach on summer mornings will improve digestive functions and control pitta dosha.


Being Cool

People may show signs of low energy and tiredness, complaining of summer fatigue, which is a sign of excess pitta. Never sunbathe or have prolonged exposure to sunlight in the summer, especially if you are pitta prakruti or if you have multiple moles, as this can cause extreme pitta disorders, such as skin cancer. 

Tips For Summer

  • Eat a pitta pacifying diet
  • Drink cooling herbal teas, such as CCF Tea (see recipe below)
  • Eat cooling, easily digested meals, such as kitchari and salads.
  • Eat primarily sweet, astringent, and bitter foods
  • Go to bed by 11 PM and get up early
  • Do regular yoga, pranayama, and meditation
  • Keep cool by applying sandalwood or rose essential oil to the body
  • Wear a hat and use sunglasses when outdoors
  • Do daily oil massage with sunflower oil or coconut oil or our signature Abhyanga oil infused with rose. 
  • Apply coconut oil to the feet and scalp at bedtime
  • Consider an Ayurvedic cleanse before summer or in the fall. 

Diet, Nutrition & Beverages


  • Eat more salads and raw food than any other seasons, which is cooling to your system especially during lunch time. Raw foods are better digested at lunch time when digestive fire is at its highest. And also include plenty of liquid foods such as cool or luke warm soups and drinks. Meals should be small and light.
  • Cook with spices that are cooling such as; fennel, mint, and coriander and avoid hot and pungent spices and foods.
  • Include fruits that are sweet and juicy such as; sweet apples, berries, peaches, pears, melons, plums, well ripened papaya, and sweet grapes
  • If you are a meat eater, enjoy light-meat chicken, turkey or shrimp in moderation. Try to avoid dark meats which are heating.
  • Drinking teas that are cooling such as rose, peppermint, lemon balm, coriander, spearmint, hibiscus etc.
  • Drink fresh coconut water, watermelon juice, fresh lemonade (few drops of lime or lemon in a glass of water with a pinch of salt with ½ tea spoon of natural sweetener – preferably sucanat, maple syrup, rock sugar etc. if you have a sweet tooth)
  • Enjoy cooling yogurt drinks (lassi) – mix 1 part of yogurt with 4 parts of water and blend it with fresh cilantro/parsley, cumin fennel and add an ounce of rose water
  • Prepare warm or cool (not hot) tea with equal amount of cumin, coriander, and fennel seeds and drink throughout the day. You can also add a little fresh ginger in moderation if you feel the need to boost your digestion.
  • Drink more room-temperature and cool drinks. Please try to avoid iced drinks since according to Ayurveda it inhibits digestion and creates more toxins in the body.


Things to Avoid in Summer

  • Avoid red meat
  • Avoid other pitta-aggravating foods
  • Avoid excessive pungent, sour, and salty foods.
  • Avoid skipping meals or fasting
  • Avoid cold or iced drinks and hot drinks
  • Avoid alcohol, excess caffeine and other heating substances
  • Avoid serious discussions or arguments
  • Avoid exposure to the sun during the middle of the day
ayurveda breathwork

Meditation and Cooling Breathing Exercises


  • During this transformational Summer season, why not give meditation a try if you’re not already.
  • Do not turn it into a competition or achievement based exercise, but rather incorporating some change to “let go”
  • Meditation can help release frustration, anger and irritation
  • The following breathing exercises will help release internal heat, giving you an ideal start to a new mediation practice

How to practice cooling breath “Shitali Pranayama”

  • Sit in a comfortable position
  • Roll your tongue and curl the sides into a tube
  • If you cannot curl your tongue into a tube, then perform this cooling breathing exercise with your teeth lightly clenched together and your tongue pressed up against the teeth. Or you can place your tongue just slightly outside your mouth and between your lips.
  • Stick the end of your tongue out between your pursed lips
  • Inhale slowly through the curled tongue tube (or lightly clenched teeth), swallow and then exhale normally through the nose keeping the mouth closed.
  • You will notice that the incoming air cools your saliva, tongue and the oral mucous membranes.
  • Repeat 5-10 times


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Disclaimer: Any content on this website is not intended as medical advice nor to replace a one-on-one relationship with a qualified health care professional. 

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