Vata, Pitta and Kapha (vpk), are the mind-body elements of which all of us are uniquely comprised. Knowing our Prakriti, or our underlying dosha combination, allows us to understand our nature, physically and emotionally.
We are watchful and aware of imbalance as it starts, and are then able to bring ourselves back into alignment. Our state of balance or imbalance at any given time is known as Vikriti, and this is our concern at vpk®. Watchful, easy alertness to imbalance as it starts, and then bringing ourselves back into alignment, is paramount.
According to Ayurveda, every season is associated with a dosha:
- Vata—fall and winter, October to February
- Kapha—spring, March to June
- Pitta—summer, July to October
During its season, each of these doshas has a tendency to increase within our body. As the cold, dry and windy weather increases from mid-October to mid-February, Vata dosha tends to increase and create imbalance as well. Vata can create disorder not only in our body, but also in our mind.
Signs of aggravated Vata:
- feeling cold even in warm environments
- poor circulation (cold hands and feet)
- irregular digestion
- gas or bloating
- occasional constipation
- intestinal cramps
- tired and/or fatigued
- forgetful, or “spaced out”
- lack of focus
- feelings of anxiousness or worry
- dry or rough skin
- difficulty falling asleep
Even for those with less Vata in their make-up, it is important to take steps to keep Vata in balance during this time because of its tendency to increase.
If you are feeling the effects of the Vata season, these simple Ayurvedic tips will help you to find balance:
The essentials: essential aroma oils
Create a healing environment with the essences of flowers and plants that have been used in Ayurveda for thousands of years. The sense of smell is a quick-acting, powerful means of creating balance.
vpk® by Maharishi Ayurveda therapeutic aroma oils are precise blends of 100% pure essential oils — diffuse them through lockets or diffusers. For massage, try adding 2 to 10 drops per 2 oz. to the base massage oil, or add a few drops to your bathwater for a fragrant healing experience.
- Calming Vata Aroma Oil — When the weather is cold and dry and you are feeling the same, this is just the thing to help you regroup. This serene selection of essential oils includes geranium rose, sweet orange and fennel.
- Worry Free Aroma Oil — This therapeutic aroma oil blend calms Vata dosha. It includes oils of patchouli, lemon and jasmine, which help the mind and body unwind to create a calm environment, quickly.
Tip: Vata can easily be thrown out of balance by travel. To counteract this, many of our customers carry these essential oils with them while traveling and use one drop on a tissue next to their bed. This is a great way to calm Vata. (Remember to wrap your bottle in a sealed Ziploc to protect against leaking in your suitcase.)
Vata and the skin
Vata skin is generally dry, thin, cool to the touch, becomes dehydrated easily, and is vulnerable to the influence of dry, windy weather. For Vata skin to stay supple, it needs to be nourished and rehydrated.
Take however many minutes you can spare — from two to 20 — to give your skin some love with the art of abhyanga — daily Ayurvedic oil massage. It's a powerful tool that has noticeable healing qualities. This gentle massage will increase circulation, loosen toxins in the layers of the skin and muscle, and stimulate nerve endings, resulting in a sense of calm you can carry with you. Practice abhyanga before or after your morning or evening shower.
Here’s how to practice abhyanga:
- Place a small amount of oil in the palm of your hand for each point listed below. Using small amounts will help you avoid feeling too oily.
- Massage the face and outer part of the ears.
- Massage both the front and back of the neck and the upper part of the spine.
- Massage the arms, using a back-and-forth motion over the long bones and a circular motion over the joints.
- Use a circular motion to massage over the heart and a clockwise motion over the abdomen.
- Massage the legs, using the same long motion over the leg bones and a circular motion over the joints.
- Massage the feet. Use the open part of your hand to massage vigorously back-and-forth over the soles.
- Last but not least, end the massage by massaging the head, face and ears.
- If during the massage any particular part of your body feels the need for extra attention, by all means do so.
Lubricate and purify your skin with Moisturizing Herbal Massage Oil—sesame seed oil, lemongrass, ashwagandha, sensitive plant, and heart-leaf sida for dry skin. Specially formulated to have a balancing effect for Vata.
Savor a Cup of Tea
In demanding situations at work, home, or on the road, savor a sweet, soothing cup of tea to quickly restore balance.
Specifically formulated to balance Vata, the Ayurvedic herbs in Organic Calming Vata Tea (licorice, ginger, cardamom and cinnamon) will help settle your mind, relax your body and aid digestion.
Worry Free Tea is a herb-and-spice blend formulated to help stabilize the emotions, calm the mind and soothe frayed nerves. Worry Free Tea helps balance and calm your mind, emotions, brain and nerves.
Find Body-Mind Balance
Do you find yourself living in the fast track, racing to meet the demands of work and home life? During Vata season, even multi-taskers who seem to thrive on fast action may feel like life is a battleground. We can step up to the challenge of modern life by calming the nervous system and supporting mental acuity with Vata-balancing herbs.
- Organic Triphala Rose — This powerful formulation has a balancing effect on Vata as it detoxifies the colon and aids in gentle elimination. Organic Digest Tone is our vpk® flagship product that improves digestion and elimination while increasing absorption of nutrients, and is Vata, Pitta, and Kapha balancing. We recommended Organic Triphala Rose to support all herbals.
- Worry Free — This Vata-specific herbal formula is one of the most powerful and effective for balancing Apana Vata, the subdosha of Vata most easily thrown out of balance. Sail through the same situations that used to cause a meltdown by changing the automatic and immediate emotional reaction to stress.
Organic Triphala Rose and Worry Free should be in every Vata-dominant person’s toolbox!
Rest Your Body and Mind
Sleeping soundly is considered a vital tool for balance in Ayurveda, because it both refreshes the nervous system and purifies (detoxes) the entire body, nightly. However, during the season of Vata, sleeping problems may be prevalent. Vata dosha governs movement, so we may experience many thoughts when Vata is out of balance. This, along with the feeling of being unable to calm the mind, may make it difficult to have a good night’s rest during Vata season.
Maharishi Ayurveda herbal sleep aids are natural and effective:
- Blissful Sleep — Formulated for those who have trouble falling asleep, the herbs in this formula produce a calming, balancing effect. You’ll find sleep becoming deeper and more restful. And you’ll wake up recharged, vitally alive, ready to take on the challenges of the day ahead.
- Deep Rest — This formula is for those who have difficulty staying asleep, wake up in the middle of the night, or wake up after less than six hours of sleep. For uninterrupted deep and restful sleep, try Deep Rest to support the overall quality of your sleep while helping to balance your mind, body and emotions, resulting in normal, refreshing sleep.
Tip: Regulate meal times. Eat the main meal of the day at lunch time (noon to 1 p.m.). Eat a light, well-cooked dinner at least three hours before bed. Eating a lighter dinner allows our body to settle down and gain the deepest night’s sleep.
© 1999, 2021 Maharishi AyurVeda Products International, Inc. (MAPI). All Rights Reserved. MAPI does not provide medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. Products are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease. See additional information.