A - Z of Hemant Ritu

Well it’s snuggle in the bed with a hot mug of cocoa season, and we are all in for it. 

At the same time we have officially stepped into the Hemant Ritu, also known as the Pre-winter season, which is one of the six seasons in the traditional Ayurvedic calendar. It is typically associated with the months of November and December.

During this period, Ayurveda believes that the body is naturally more susceptible to dryness, cold, and congestion, and it is important to support the body's natural defenses. Hence we are here with some holistic ayurvedic practices that can be a powerful way to promote balance and well-being during Hemant Ritu. 

One effective Ayurvedic practice during this time is the use of warm, nourishing foods and spices. This can include soups and stews made with warming spices such as ginger, turmeric, and cinnamon, as well as root vegetables and hearty grains. These foods can help to support the body's natural defense against the cold and dryness of winter.

Here are few recipes that you can indulge in:

1. Turmeric Milk:

This warm and nourishing beverage is made by simmering milk with turmeric, ginger, and a sweetener such as honey or maple syrup. Turmeric is a warming spice that can support the immune system and promote overall well-being.

2. Vegetable Soup with Warming Spices:

This hearty soup is made with a variety of vegetables, such as potatoes, carrots, seasoned with warming spices like ginger, cumin, and coriander. This soup is a warm and nourishing meal that can support the body during the colder winter months.

3. Kitchari/Khichdi:

This traditional Ayurvedic dish is made with a mixture of rice and lentils, and can be seasoned with a variety of warming spices such as cumin, coriander, and turmeric. Kitchari/Khichdi is a simple and nourishing meal that can be easily digested, making it a great choice for those who may be feeling sluggish during the winter.

4. Ginger Tea:

Ginger is a warming and energizing spice that can support the immune system and digestion. To make ginger tea, simply bring a pot of water to a boil, add sliced ginger, and let simmer for 10-15 minutes. Strain and sweeten with honey if desired.

In addition to dietary considerations, Ayurveda also recommends incorporating daily self-care practices such as : 

1. Oil massage or Abhyanga

Abhyanga can help to nourish and moisturize as our skin tends to become dry. Here is a general guide to performing abhyanga:

  1. - Choose an oil that is suitable for your dosha, or Ayurvedic body type. For example, sesame oil is nourishing and grounding, and is good for Vata and Kapha types. Coconut oil is cooling and lubricating, and is good for Pitta types.
  2. - Warm the oil by placing it in a bottle or jar and setting it in a bowl of hot water. The oil should be warm, but not hot, when you apply it to your skin.
  3. - Start by massaging the oil into your scalp, using circular strokes with your fingertips. Work your way down to your face, neck, and shoulders, using long, gentle strokes.
  4. - Next, move on to your arms and legs, using circular motions to massage the oil into your joints and muscles.
  5.  - Finally, rub a small amount of oil onto the soles of your feet and between your toes.
  6. - Allow the oil to soak into your skin for at least 10-15 minutes before showering or bathing.

Abhyanga is best done at night, before bed, as it can help to relax the mind and body and promote a restful sleep. It can also be done in the morning as a way to invigorate and nourish the skin and senses.

Nourish yourself with our Poshak Key Massage Oil an Ayurvedic Blend For Abhyanga

2. Warm water therapy or Swedana

Swedana is a traditional Ayurvedic treatment that involves the use of warm water to open the pores, improve circulation, and remove toxins from the body. 

Here is how you can perform Swedana at home:

  1.  - Begin by heating a pot of water until it is comfortably warm, but not hot. The water should be at a temperature that is comfortable for you to immerse your body in.
  2. - Fill a large tub or basin with the warm water, and add any herbs or essential oils that you wish to use. Some common herbs used in Swedana include ginger, fennel, and turmeric.
  3. - Sit in the tub or basin, and allow the warm water to cover your body up to your neck. If you are using a tub, you can also add a few inches of cold water to the top to create a contrast effect.
  4. - Stay in the water for 15-30 minutes, allowing the heat to penetrate your skin and muscles. You can also use a loofah or sponge to scrub your skin to help remove impurities.
  5. - When you are finished, drain the tub and rinse your body with cool water to close your pores and stimulate circulation.

It is important to listen to your body and not stay in the water for too long if you start to feel uncomfortable or overheated. Swedana is best done in the evening, as it can help to relax the mind and body and promote a restful sleep. It is also important to drink plenty of water after the treatment to help flush toxins out of your body.

Another significant aspect of Ayurvedic care during the Hemant Ritu is the use of herbal remedies to support the body's natural defense mechanisms. This can include the use of immune-boosting herbs such as ashwagandha, as well as herbs that support respiratory health, such as licorice root and Tulsi.

Indulge in the goodness of Amrutam’s Lozenge Malt an Ayurvedic medicinal recipe crafted with the goodness of Tulsi, Vasa, Mulethi, Pushkarmool and Tribhuvan Kirti Ras that helps with respiratory health.

Overall, the incorporation of holistic Ayurvedic practices can be a powerful way to support balance and well-being during the winter season. By nourishing the body with warm, nourishing foods, incorporating self-care practices, and using supportive herbs, individuals can promote their overall health and well-being during this time.

We hope that this A-Z guide to Hemant Ritu, makes this season a joyful and merry one!

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