Now that we are in late September, the heat and humidity are reaching their final days. A noticeable shift has happened in the air. The mornings are cooler and reveal the inevitable presence of autumn.

While summer is happening externally, what is going on internally? According to Ayurvedic theory, our bodies reflect the transitions of the seasons. Indeed, we are a tiny snapshot of the universe. Whether or not you thrive in the heat, the summer still affects each and every one of us.

Summer is ruled by the passionate and sharp Pitta dosha. Composed of the elements fire and water, you may notice these elements are more prevalent during the summer. After three months of baking in the heat, we all begin to absorb some extra fire in our systems. Symptoms of accumulated heat include:

  • Irritability
  • Rashes or Hives
  • Acne
  • Headaches
  • Acid Indigestion
  • Sour Burps
  • Impatience
  • Anger

Now is the time to start cooling the body so as to not bring that extra heat into the fall. 

A great way to pacify Pitta dosha is by incorporating rose into your daily routine. The sweet scent of rose is romantic and has an affinity for the heart. Softening the heart allows for more openness and less anger and irritability. Why not give roses a try? Rose oil, rose water, and rose tea are good places to start.

Rose Essential Oil
Rose essential oil is typically very cooling. White rose oil is the most appropriate for Pitta. Yellow and red roses are both thought to be heating and more conducive to Vata types.

Rose essential oil is soothing, helps prevent negative dreams, defuses worry and agitation, and fosters sound sleep.

To use: add a drop of rose oil to a generous amount of coconut oil (which is also cooling) and gently massage the feet at night before bed. I would recommend this routine during the warmer months. However, as it starts to cool off, switch to a different base oil such as sesame, sunflower, or almond oil.

Rose Water
You can find this gem in most natural food stores in the health-and-beauty aisle. Rose water is an excellent way to cool down dry, itchy, red eyes. I often recommend that clients keep a bottle at their desk to spray their eyes every hour or so. This practices is especially helpful if one spends hours staring at a screen each day. In addition, the scent is refreshing and uplifting, perfect for work. 

Please note, it is critical to buy 100% pure rose water. Dyes or synthetic fragrances should be nowhere near the eyes.

Rose Tea
Cool yourself down internally with a refreshing cup of rose tea. Roses are considered sattvic, or pure and light. Use this tea to tame an irritated mind and open the heart. Below are instructions on how to make a cold or hot rose tea infusion.

Cold Infusion
Ingredients:

  • 1 heaping teaspoon of Dried Organic Rose Petals
  • 1 cup of Water

Instructions:

  1. Add 1 rounded teaspoon and 1 cup of cool water to a pint ball jar.
  2. Screw the lid on tight and allow to steep overnight in your refrigerator.
  3. Strain and sip at room temperature.

Hot Infusion
Ingredients:

  • 1-2 Cups of Fresh, Organic rose petals
  • 3 cups of Water

Instructions:

  1. Place rose petals in a sauce pan with 3 cups of water.
  2. Boil for 5 minutes.
  3. Strain and serve — add a splash of maple syrup to sweeten (honey is heating).

I strongly encourage you to begin integrating rose essential oil, water, or tea into your daily rhythm. Not only will you find relief from stored summer heat, but you will feel refreshed, buoyant, and you just might find some softening in the area around your heart. Enjoy!

Writer Lauren Sauer is a graduate from the Kripalu School of Ayurveda and a certified 500 hour Kripalu Ayurvedic Yoga Teacher. As an Ayurvedic Health Counselor, she is passionate about educating others to become their own health advocate, to live with the rhythms of nature and to simply slow down and breathe. She currently resides in the beautiful Berkshires as the intern with the Kripalu School of Ayurveda.

For educational purposes only. This information has not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This information is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease, or to sell any product.