My 5 month old – who is exclusively breastfed – is suffering greatly with eczema. Will a pitta balancing diet help and can I safely take chyawanprash while breast feeding him?
I’m sorry to hear your baby is suffering from eczema, but how lucky to have a caring Mama like you looking for effective treatment. As your baby is metabolising further all that you have metabolised, it is sensible that you are starting with yourself in finding remedies for their eczema. There are three ways in which I would tackle eczema at home (and with the help of a practitioner):
  1. Cleansing, removing excess toxicity or ama from your system, and therefore the system of your baby
  2. Rejuvenation therapy
  3. A fresh, clean, pitta-balancing diet

Let me explain...

  1. Cleansing the system: our body doesn’t want toxicity to be there. So it finds ways of getting rid of it, one of these exit points is the skin through sweating. This toxicity - which may have shown up as a gentle imbalance within the person - can then cause local imbalances at its exit point. This can be the pathology of eczema. So we cleanse the channels, meaning that waste materials are being disposed of properly, there is no toxic build up and we are not troubled by skin conditions.
  1. Rejuvenation therapy: for replenishment after we have cleansed the system. Once the channels are clear of debris we need to renourish the body. Chyawanprash is one of Ayurveda’s favourite ways of doing this. Chyawanprash is a comprehensive nectar and jam, filled with layer upon layer of nutrients, minerals, strength and Ojas-building goodness. Ghruta or ghee is another. This is why Pior Living makes them, because they are some of the most nourishing things we can consume in very simple forms.
Aaaand, chywanaprash is great for us when we are breast feeding - I have written more about that here. For not only is it safe but it is wonderful. It replenishes the rasa dhatu that will have been a little rinsed by the baby both in utero and via breast milk.
  1. The skin is a seat of pitta dosha: meaning it is a place where pitta imbalances can show up. One of pitta’s functions is temperature regulation. And as we know, when the body heats up, it sweats to keep cool. So we want to make sure pitta is in balance….and we are not giving it too much work.

This is also relevant for summer time in the northern hemisphere, when the sun is at its height and so is pitta. Meaning it will easily be thrown off balance. So we want to maintain a pitta balancing diet at this time of year. It is therefore sensible that you have introduced a pitta-balancing diet.

How do I balance pitta dosha?

What does a pitta balancing diet look like?

  • Pitta shows up in the following tastes: salty, sour and pungent. This means that foods with these tastes will aggravate and heat pitta further.
  • The qualities of pitta (therefore those that aggravate it) are hot, light, oily, sharp, penetrating and fast.
  • The opposite to these three pitta aggravating tastes, are foods that are sweet, bitter or astringent, they will pacify and balance pitta.
  • We also need to incorporate the opposite qualities into our diet, meaning: cooling, heavier, slower foods.
  • Pitta is balanced by ghruta or ghee, coconuts, beetroot, carrots, caulifower, cilantro, avocado rice, oats, pasta, amaranth and quinoa. As well as; papaya, prunes, peaches, apricots, sweet apples, mango; overly sour fruits will aggravate pitta.
  • Pitta needs you to know what heats you up and what cools you down, because if you have a pitta constitution, you are vulnerable to over heating, and skin imbalances…

We also want to be avoiding things like coffee, alcohol, pastries, nightshades, if we are to really set about balancing pitta and cooling our system. I would advise you get in touch with an Ayurvedic practitioner to further support the points above and fast track you and your baby into balance. Feel free to get in touch with me here, I do consultations online as well as in person.

Love, Selina

By Selina Van Orden

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