Seasonal Nourishment | Vata Season
Photography by Liz Smithers of Laka Living
In our recent post, The Art of Slowing Down, we reflected on autumn as a time of transition known in Ayurveda as vata season, which is characteristic of dry, rough, windy, erratic, cool, subtle, and clear. Ayurveda considers a seasonal routine an important cornerstone of health, year around. Balancing the nature of your local climate with lifestyle choices that offset the potential for seasonally-induced imbalances is one of the simplest ways that you can protect your well-being.
When speaking of balance, diet is a fundamental way to soothe characteristics of vata, focusing on deep nourishment through food that promotes a sense of warmth and grounding to combat the coolness and dryness of the season. Think substantive, oily, nourishing foods that are high in protein and fat, and brought to life with warming, stimulating spices and the nourishing addition of ghee. Most importantly, eat what's in season, and serve it warm.
In general, you’ll want to reduce your consumption of raw vegetables, cold and frozen foods, as too many cooling foods can aggravate the internal reproductive organs and offset digestion and proper elimination. Consider switching your cold morning smoothies to wholesome breakfasts of cooked grains and eggs or plant-based proteins and for lunch and dinner, include steamed vegetables, hearty grains, organic meat, bone broths, soups, and stews that are deeply grounding and moisturizing.
We've pulled together a quick recipe guide that includes vata foods and flavors to favor (plus our favorite Boketto pantry staples to pair them with), but as always, listen to your body's unique needs in order to nourish yourself accordingly.
Roasted Squash Salad with Sesame Crisps and Creamy Miso Dressing, a simple transitional salad featuring a variety of textures and flavors that helps to brighten even the coolest days. Garnish with Sun Potion White Mulberries for immune support, iron and Vitamin C.
Savory Slow Cooker Oatmeal with Crispy Bacon, a delicious spin on a dish traditionally thought to be best enjoyed sweet. A comforting bowl of slow cooked oatmeal is combined with butternut squash, garlic, herbs, parmesan cheese (optional), and topped with crispy bacon and avocado. Slather with a little Ancient Organics Ghee and a sprinkle of Himalayan Pink Salt.
Pumpkin Coconut Curry Chicken, like a warm hug in a bowl. Throw in some kale, broccolini, and chickpeas to pack in lots of nutrients, fiber and extra protein. This dish can also easily be made vegan by swapping out the chicken for more veggies, and we suggest giving this curry the special treatment by adding any of our Dr. Cowan's vegetable powders for added nutrients.
Sheet Pan Maple Dijon Salmon with Brussels Sprouts and Sweet Potatoes, a simple, minimal and flavorful meal that hardly takes any time to prep and can be enjoyed to please one or a full crowd. Add a touch of Shaman Shack Sea Clear for umami flavor and probiotic cleansing power.
Three Mushroom & Thyme Chickpea Pancake, which is more of a frittata-style pancake featuring a chickpea batter and a trifecta of mushrooms (shiitake, maitake, enoki). Fold any of Moon Juice's mushroom adaptogens (chaga, reishi, cordyceps) into the batter for a super shroom boost.
Sweet Potato Skillet Hash, a hearty staple that works just as well for dinner as it does breakfast. Onions are caramelized in lots of cumin, coriander, chili flakes and sea salt and then combined with diced sweet potatoes, cilantro and whatever else makes sense to you. Combine Anima Mundi's Plant Collagen with equal parts olive oil and tahini for a collagen-spiked skillet hash drizzle.
Pumpkin Miso Broth with Soba, for when you're craving something luscious and soothing. Steamed pumpkin is blended with ginger and miso for a creamy broth that can be topped off with your choice of crisp onion, sesame seeds, sautéed shiitake mushrooms and seaweed. For an extra luxurious broth base, infuse with Anima Mundi's Coconut Cream Powder.
Simple Avocado Salad, a wholesome little elegance and the perfect balance of flavors and textures. The dressing is made with blood orange juice for bright flavor and color and the paprika and chili lend a bit of spice to balance out the creamy avocado. This salad is great on its own or with mixed greens and local sourdough. Fleck with Moon Juice Schisandra Berry or give it the Laka Living Super Shroom Butter treatment for added fats and immune support.
Blog content curated by Women's Health Specialist Allison Walton exclusively for Boketto Wellness.