Seasonal regimen (Rutucharya)

Seasonal regimen is fine tuning the daily regimen to be in sync with climatic and seasonal variations in Nature and further based on individual body type.

According to Ayurved, the human body is a miniature representation of nature and thus have common basic elements. Therefore, any change in the season, affects the human physiology considerably. To create harmony between the nature and the human physiology, one has to create a diet plan and daily regimen to synchronize with the season’s changes.

As the seasons change, so must our daily routine. This practice is known as a ‘Rutucharya’. ‘Rutu’ means ‘season’ and ‘charya’ means ‘routine’. Rutucharya is a seasonal regimen of diet and lifestyle that helps maintain health and well-being.


In my earlier writings I have mentioned the ‘Dosha’s… ‘Vata’, ‘Kapha’, & ‘Pitta’. Each of these mind-body types is predominant in specific seasons. Changes in the season cycle are potential causes of Dosha imbalance. We cannot control these changes but we can certainly maintain balance by adapting our life style accordingly. The seasonal directives for each are guides to keep them balanced.


Rutucharya: The Seasonal Cycle


Kapha is aggravated in the late winter and spring. Pitta is aggravated in the summer

Vata is aggravated in the fall and early winter


*These seasonal cycles & specifications are mostly according to the Indian seasons.


It is not really the calendar but the Nature that tells us when and which Dosha will be predominant. Therefore we should not indulge in foods or activities, that are likely to aggravate the respective Doshas.

On the other hand we should undergo Vamana or herb induced emesis in vasant rutu , Virechana or herb induced purgation in sharad rutu and Basti in varsha rutu to eliminate aggravation of Kapha, Pitta and Vata and try to prevent seasonal diseases.



In India, the whole year is divided into six (6) seasons.


In the US, there is a vast difference in the weather pattern in different states. So everyone has to follow the season and accordingly ‘Rutucharya’ should be followed.


Let’s see the six patterns of ‘Rutucharya’…






Spring (Vasant Rutu): Kapha Predominance:


  • The nature of the season is hot and oily, so aggravation kapha occurs
  • Massage and body therapies be done with dry herbal powders such as Haritaki or Ginger or heating oil such as Mustard.
  • Spring is an ideal time for Vamana.
  • Avoid sleeping during the day time, heavy foods, cold foods, excess sweets, sour fruits and oils
  • Eat dry, light food
  • Use bitter, pungent and astringent tastes
  • Exercise is a must
  • Herbs to benefit Kapha include Pippali, Maricha (BlackPepper), Haritaki, Guggul, Ginger and Punarnava.


Kapha Balancing Tea:



  • 4cups water
  • 1 tea spoon slightly crushed cinnamon
  • ½ tea spoon turmeric powder
  • 1 tea spoon grated Ginger
  • 2 cloves


  • Heat water in a pot.
  • Add cinnamon, turmeric powder and cloves.
  • Boil for 3 minutes.
  • Add grated ginger and boil for 2 more minutes.
  • Strain and serve hot.


Summer(Greeshma Rutu): Pitta predominance:


  • Summer represents the hot, bright, sharp qualities of Pitta, so our diet and lifestyle should be align to balance this energy.
  • Eat light, oily, sweet foods with lots of fluids
  • Fruit juices, milk, ghee, grapes, coconut water are good
  • Exercise with restraint
  • Day time nap is recommended as days are longer and nights are shorter
  • Avoid excess salt, sour and spicy foods
  • Bathing with cold water and application of sandal powder is good
  • The diet should be cool, heavy and bland to counter Pitta’s hot, light and sharp qualities. Add more fruit and vegetables to the diet
  • Emphasize sweet, astringent and bitter tastes, which palliate Pitta.
  • Avoid alcohol.
  • Drinks such as Lassi (yogurt drink), lime juice and coconut water should be emphasized.
  • Massage in the morning with coconut oil.


Pitta Balancing Tea:


  • 4 cups water
  • 8 to 10 mint leaves
  • 1-table spoon partially crushed coriander seeds
  • 1 table spoon cumin seeds
  • 2 cardamom pods


  • Heat water in a pot.
  • Add slightly crushed mint leaves, coriander, cumin seeds and cardamom.
  • Boil for 3 minutes. Let it cool. Strain and serve cool


Now, I am sure that your spring and summer woes are addressed and by the time you adapt yourself to these ancient advice, the rainy season will be upon all of us here in India at least…and so will my next blog!

Happy health to you all.








The journey of every human is from darkness towards light. Darkness prepares us for the light that we seek. So it is the ‘Ratricharya’ that prepares us for a smooth transition into the dawn. Ayurved classifies day and night, having 12 hours each which remain divided between 6 am and 6 pm. The day and night are further divided into three parts and the domination by ‘Kapha’, ‘Pitta’ and Vata’ is also duly acknowledged by Ayurved.

‘Ratricharya simply refers to the set of activities considered ideal & recommended by Ayurveda, for the night time.

Ratricharya consists of the following important activities

Sandhya ” in the evening, when the sun has just set, is a time one needs to be mindful of the changes taking place in the environment.

Our ancients observed a tradition of offering prayers, lighting lamps, ringing bells as is done in temples at this time of the day also. That’s because the heavier or negative energies are at their peak at this time, therefore connecting oneself with the divine at this specific time has been emphasised upon to ward off the negative energies.

The ‘Ratricharya’, as Ayurveda propagates include, dinner, sex and sleep.


Dinner is an important event in Ratricharya. A well planed dinner ensures sound sleep and a feeling of freshness upon waking up in the morning. One should remember while planning dinner that after sunset the digestive powers are on the wane. One should therefore avoid over burdening the digestive system. Basic hygiene like washing hands, feet, face and mouth should be given top priority.

One should observe the following:

  • Dinner is recommended at sunset, in Ayurved. Ideal time is between 6 to 8 pm. In the present context of life style it’s not possible for everybody. However, an attempt to have dinner as early as possible is always welcome for the body.
  • Dinner should always be light consisting of only easily digestible foods and consumed while the food is warm.
  • Excessively oily, spicy foods, heavy foods, non vegetarian foods should be avoided for dinner.
  • Avoid raw vegetables and pulses.
  • There should be a sufficient gap of one & a half to two hours between dinner and sleep.
  • Make it a point to have some warm water along with food.
  • Avoid consuming curds at night.


Post dinner activities:

  • Betel leaves are beneficial for helping digestion. As such it is recommended that to chew at least one betel leaf
  • A light walk after dinner is also beneficial.

‘Ratricharya’ also recommends consumption of Triphala (three myrobalans- Terminalia chebula, Terminalia belerica and Embelica officinalis) Along with honey and ghee at bed time. It is very beneficial for the eyes as it improves vision and increases the visual acuity.

(It is recommended that this be done under the recommendation and observation of your Ayurvedic practitioner.)



At night,Tama Guna’ is predominant, which makes the body and sense organs heavy and weak. When the sense organs are tired and the mind is in a state of with drawl, we feel sleepy.  Healthy sleep is considered that is sound and that occurs naturally.

Sleep provides our body with sufficient rest and relaxation. A good sleep always ensures sound mind and body and restores natural equilibrium to the functioning of doshas, dhatus, and various systems in the body. However, sleep in excess or its deprivation, are both harmful to the body.

Though the amount of sleep necessary for every individual may vary, but there could be some consensus on the average amount of sleep necessary. For an adult on an average 6-7hrs of sleep should be sufficient. It is more in case of children, older people and people suffering from illnesses.

While deciding the exact amount of sleep one has to consider factors such as the body type of the individual, nature of work the individual indulges in, type of place of residence, type of food consumed and the season.

People who keep awake till late hours, are observed to have developed digestive problems like acidity, indigestion, constipation, insomnia, etc. It’s because keeping awake at nights disturbs and aggravates the ‘Vata Dosha’.

Many students study till late hours in the night. The ideal time for studies is early in the morning as it is the time when the energies are conducive for mental development and aids memory retention. Infants and younger children need more sleep so they should be put to bed early.



Some important tips for sleep:

  • One should always sleep early. Despite especially the present urban life style, one should go to bed at least by 10:30 pm.
  • Normally it is recommended to fix a regular time for sleep.
  • One should never sleep with a heavy abdomen.
  • One should ensure that the bedding is comfortable and sufficiently large
  • Use of electronic gadgets on the bed is strictly avoidable.

One should try to fix definite timings for taking meals, going to sleep, and other relevant acts (‘Kriya’). This is termed as’kriya kaal’.  Any deviation from this kriya kaal causes imbalance in the body resulting in diseases.

Day sleep should be avoided. Exception unless the following conditions apply:


  • Individuals who work the night shift, or after physical exertion.
  • Physical injury or psychological problems.
  • Sleep period during day time should be ½ of the night sleep.



  • All living beings have an instinct for sex. Sex at the right time and in correct frequency improves quality of life and longevity. Frequent sex depletes ‘Ojas’ and/or the immune system and therefore should be avoided.
  • Sexual desire may vary with age, constitution, body condition and even with variations in the seasons.
  • Having sex is very natural and is essential for mental and physical health. To suppress the urge or desire causes ‘Vata’ aggravation, and many other psychological symptoms.




  • In winter, sex can be performed quite frequently.
  • In the spring and fall it should be reduced to maximum twice a week and in the summer to twice a month.
  • The minimum age is puberty.


This concludes the overview of ‘Achaar’ but should you need any clarifications in connection with the subjects discussed here, please feel free to contact me for an appointment. You may inbox me here.