Written by John Immel,
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Spring - Mid-February - Mid MayThe spring is a watery season of warming temperatures. Snow melts making the rivers full and muddy. Warm temperatures encourage tender young sprouts and sweet sap to run in the vasculature of maple trees. Our internal landscape reflects mother nature's. Spring is a time of cleansing and renewal. Kapha fat melts away from tissues, along with toxins, and into the blood, making the blood sweet. Blood plasma and toxins are our metaphorical maple syrup and muddy river, releasing a flood of mucus in allergy season.
Summer - Mid-May to Mid-AugustHot, humid weather destroys the appetite and aggravates Pitta-Kapha rashes, irritability, and lethargy during early summer. By mid-July the body quickly dries out aggravating Pitta-Vata rashes, constipation, insomnia, and seasonal allergies.
Autumn: Mid-August to Mid-NovemberCooling temperatures pull blood inward to the core as the body scrambles to protect itself from heat loss. The extremities lose access to blood and warmth, drying out the skin on the arms, legs and eventually the colon. The core of the body rich with blood, conversely, improves appetite just in time to nourish and insulate the skin with a fresh layer of fat.
Winter: Mid-November to Mid-FebruaryDeeply cold temperatures cause cravings for rich, fatty, heavy foods from mid November through January 1st. As temperatures bottom out, cravings switch from fatty foods to ferments, including wines, sauerkrauts, and vinegars in January.
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About the AuthorJohn Immel, the founder of Joyful Belly, teaches people how to have a healthy diet and lifestyle with Ayurveda biocharacteristics. His approach to Ayurveda is clinical, yet exudes an ease which many find enjoyable and insightful. John also directs Joyful Belly's School of Ayurveda, offering professional clinical training in Ayurveda for over 15 years.
John's interest in Ayurveda and specialization in digestive tract pathology was inspired by a complex digestive disorder acquired from years of international travel, as well as public service work in South Asia. John's commitment to the detailed study of digestive disorders reflects his zeal to get down to the roots of the problem. His hope and belief in the capacity of each & every client to improve their quality of life is nothing short of a personal passion. John's creativity in the kitchen and delight in cooking for others comes from his family oriented upbringing. In addition to his certification in Ayurveda, John holds a bachelor's degree in mathematics from Harvard University.
John enjoys sharing Ayurveda within the context of his Catholic roots, and finds Ayurveda gives him an opportunity to participate in the healing mission of the Church. Jesus expressed God's love by feeding and healing the sick. That kindness is the fundamental ministry of Ayurveda as well. Outside of work, John enjoys spending time with his wife and 6 kids, and pursuing his love of theology, philosophy, and language.
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It seems that the dates for each season must depend on where a person is located in the world. Here in the upper midwest, we tend to run about a month later than the dates given in this article. I think this is a fascinating approach to choosing what to eat, as well as for experiencing life more fully.