As the days seem to get longer and longer, and the sun stronger and stronger, it is a sure sign that we are moving into Pitta season. Made up of the primal elements fire (mainly) and water (secondarily), pitta has hot, oily, sharp, light, sour, fluid, and pungent attributes—many of the same sensory qualities that summer surrounds us with. As we enter the summer season, the other elements of earth, air and ether take a backseat to fire for many of us who have higher amounts of Pitta in our constitutions. If you or others you know are predominantly Pitta, you may notice that you tend to be a bit more fiery than usual. Signs of Pitta imbalance this can be represented in the physical body through acne, heartburn, skin irritations, diarrhea and more. Through the mind, it can be witnessed through irritability (especially after being exposed to heat), hypercritical of self or others, competitiveness, envy, and being easily angered.
What does this mean for you? Well, if you are a hot yoga loving Pitta-Yogi, then maybe during these summer months you should focus more on non-heated classes, as you have enough fire and heat in your body to warm yourself quickly than those of a Vata or Kapha nature.
Pitta governs digestion and metabolism, so the fire may flare first in the small intestine and the stomach—Pitta’s main seats in the body—with excesses of digestive acid and bile. Fresh, seasonal fruits and vegetables, especially those with a high water content, can help you to cool down. Also taking sips of aloe vera juice or lots of coconut water throughout the day. However, it’s best to avoid icy-cold drinks (especially with meals) as they will douse your digestive fire and cause digestion to slow down.
If you are Pitta, although that habanero salsa sounds like a great addition to your fish taco, it’s better to skip on the spicy food during this season too. Bitter, sweet, and astringent tastes calm Pitta, so eat more foods like apples, grapes, zucchini, lettuce, cucumbers and cilantro. Eliminate or reduce your intake of alcohol, heavy meats, and fried, oily, salty, spicy, and sour food
It’s also important for Pittas to eat three meals a day during this season, and lunch should be eaten as close to noon as possible. If you need to go out into the sun, be sure not to do it on an empty stomach. My Farmer's Market Gazpacho is a perfect Summer recipe to balance the fiery-side of Pitta.