morterandpestleOne of the most beautiful things about Ayurveda is the way spices are used not only to make food more delicious, but also to heal and balance your body.  Autumn is the season dominated by Vata, otherwise known as Wind. You can easily keep your body, mind, and spirit in balance with the Vata season by including Ayurvedic spices in your cooking. Here's a recipe for a Vata spice mixture that you can carry with you when you eat out, or add to your meals at home.  You can also take 1/2 tsp. of this mixture with warm water in between meals any time you're experiencing gas and bloating.

Vata Digestive Spice Powder

Grind the following spices and combine in decreasing quantities:

Cardamom seeds, fennel seeds, cumin seeds, dry ginger powder, turmeric, sucanat, mineral salt, hing (aka asafoetida). 

Benefits of Vata Spices

Vata is cold and dry.  In autumn when it's also cold and dry, it's important to keep your body warm with good circulation.  Warming, pungent spices accomplish this by keeping your digestive fire stoked.  Ayurveda also teaches that for optimal digestion, all 6 tastes (sweet, salty, sour, pungent, bitter, and astringent) should be present in a meal. This spice mixture has all tastes except sour, so just squirt a little lemon or lime on your meal to round it out.

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