In Ayurveda, there are 3 doshas or body types: Vata, Pitta, and Kapha. Pitta is the energy of digestion, assimilation, and transformation. Pitta is comprised of fire and water. It is hot, sharp, oily, and penetrating. In the summer, Pitta can get overheated and out of balance. There are some common Ayurvedic remedies to help pacify Pitta in the summer.
It is important not to overexert yourself during the summer, especially during 10 am to 2 pm, the times when Pitta is at its peak. Avoid being out in the hot sun doing strenuous exercise at these times. If you are out, wear a hat and use sunscreen.
High Pitta people are prone to skin conditions and irritations. Neem oil has been used as a natural sunscreen in India. Neem soap can also be beneficial for Pitta skin which gets irritated and inflamed.
Ayurveda operates on the axiom of “like increases like”. Thus, eating hot, spicy foods such as peppers, chilies, or sour foods as vinegar and alcohol, citrus fruits, and excess salt will increase Pitta. It is better for those with high Pitta to use mineral salt in their food. Eating sour foods and cheese in excessive amounts will also increase Pitta. One easy method to pacify Pitta in the summer is to use lime rather than lemon. Lime is not as sour or heating as lemon.
Another quality of Pitta is oily. Thus, consuming oily foods or fatty, fried foods will raise the amount of Pitta in your body. Substances which provide essential fatty acids (i.e. flax seed oil) do not aggravate Pitta dosha. Eating cooling, sweet, and mildly spiced foods will help in pacifying Pitta in the summer.
To the greatest extent possible it would be best to avoid very competitive activities which can over heat the body or engage in heated debates where fiery emotions such as anger, criticism, and envy can arise.
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