Ayurveda Holiday Survival Guide
Dosha Tips for a Blissful Holiday
The holiday season is upon us! This week the Indian holiday, Diwali, the “Festival of lights,” is celebrated all over the world. Here in America (not forgetting our dear global Ex pats) we are ready to celebrate one of our biggest holidays – Thanksgiving. This traditional coming together of friends, family, and neighbors, is one of Dosha Guru’s favorite holidays.
Thanksgiving brings people from all walks of life to break bread together and enjoy the simple good fortunes of life that we sometimes take for granted.
Note: This tip is written for each dosha type and only contains tips for Vata, Pitta, Kapha, and Tridoshic types. To get tips for your unique balance, including dual dosha types (eg. vata & pitta), take our dosha quiz and then enter your email at the end to download your report. This will subscribe you to our weekly tips and you will receive just the right tip for your unique dosha balance.
FOR KAPHA DOSHA TYPES:
For you, dear Kapha, this is a time for you to be close to your family, which, we know, can be both uplifting and depressing.
From a social perspective, try to go lightly into the situation. If you are going to a holiday party, find a Vata as your date. You can live vicariously through them, and allow yourself to hang back a little, but still enjoy the holiday mix.
From an eating perspective, here’s how to interact with food in a way that you won’t go out of balance!
- Eat until you are two-thirds full – If there is an overabundance of food on the table, chances are that you’ll soon have an overabundance in your belly. We understand that holidays can be stressful for you, and you may reach for food to help you cope. Just breathe, and try to be aware of nearing your limit, even if that means excusing yourself from the table.
- Avoid iced foods (particularly ice cream!) – Cold drinks, especially, bring your metabolism to a grinding halt. Try drinking hot water with fresh ginger before and after your meal. It’s also a great idea for you to throw on your coat and go for a nice walk after the meal. In this way you may be able to avoid the urge to have a siesta!
- Wherever you are enjoying a holiday meal, know that it was prepared with love, even if you prepared it yourself. Holidays are a time for coming together to experience friendship and love.
FOR PITTA DOSHA TYPES:
The holidays are a time for you, dear Pitta, to be the social king or queen of the season, but they can also cause you to be a little aggrieved and aggressive, especially if your name was neglected on that very exclusive guest list!
From a social perspective, try not to be an elitist about where you go or who you spend time with when you arrive. You are an authority on discernment, but if a family member is throwing a party the same night as an exclusive holiday party, go to your family. People will think you are totally cool when you come to work the following Monday and announce that you blew off the posh party to be at your cousin’s.
From an eating perspective, here are a few reminders about how to interact with food in a way that you won’t go out of balance!
- Chew your food – Heartburn and indigestion is a constant reminder that your tummy actually lacks teeth, and digestion starts in the mouth! So chew your food. That’s all.
- Eat until you are two-thirds full – If there is an overabundance of food laid out in front of you, chances are, that if you don’t pause to think about it and be aware of your body as you eat, you will consume an overabundance.
- Easy on the booze – Alcohol, although celebratory this time of year, is highly acidic and Pitta increasing. (Who knew?) Enjoy a glass or two, but limit it at that. We love you, dear Pitta, and don’t want you to risk a flammable situation!
FOR VATA DOSHA TYPES:
For you, dear Vata, the holidays are a time to be social and light, but they may also cause you some anxiety and consternation.
From a social perspective, have a holiday game plan for all the events you are planning on attending. And if you intend on host a party, try co-hosting with a friend or family member. This way, you can split the responsibility between you, so you won’t feel so overwhelmed.
From an eating perspective, here are a few reminders about how to deal with food so that your doshas do not go out of balance!
- Don’t eat while trying to organize your party – Focusing on your meal when it’s time to eat (and you, of all people, should make time to eat) is most important for Vata. If you’re on the phone and trying to eat, not only might you miss some important details as you chow down, but you may not be getting the full benefit from your food if you’re busy taking notes. (Do we have to add that it’s not wise to eat while driving? Eyes on the road, not your bagel!)
- Always eat food that has been well cooked – A raw foods diet is NOT ideal for your Vata dosha. You may feel that having eaten too much turkey allows you to then eat salad, but salads are always Vata increasing. Reach for those mashed yams and gravy! Go ahead!
- Avoid Iced cold drinks – You may love the ice, but cold anything can seriously slow down your digestive process. *It takes the body about 5 hours to absorb iced water, compared to 45 minutes for hot water. And only have a little liquid while you eating, because it can prevent you from getting enough to eat. This does include that glass of wine you are enjoying.
FOR TRIDOSHIC TYPES:
For you, dear Tridosha, holidays can be somewhat of a mixed bag. You love all the jubilation and celebration, but you may also experience some social anxiety and/or become a little overwhelmed trying to celebrate and also maintain a schedule. You may even dip into depression if things get too overwhelming.
From a social perspective, ease into the holiday season with that high degree of grace you always have. It’s a quality that other people admire in you, and when you take recourse to it, it can really save you. If you are feeling overwhelmed by the sheer magnitude of your holiday plans, remember that it’s ok to say no. Your friends will understand if you can’t hit 500 holiday parties in a season!
From an eating perspective, here’s how to deal with food so that your doshas won’t go out of balance!
- Chew your food – Heartburn and indigestion is a reminder that your tummy lacks teeth, and that digestion starts in the mouth, so chew your food.
- Eat until you are two-thirds full – If there is an overabundance of food on the table, it’s too easy for there to be an overabundance of food in your belly. Try to remain aware of how your body is feeling at every part of the meal.
- Easy on the booze – Alcohol, although very celebratory this time of year, is highly acidic and Pitta increasing. Enjoy a glass or two, but try to limit it. Overdoing can result in a Pitta firestorm or a Kapha breakdown. Or (horrors) both.