In the Ayurvedic tradition, autumn is the season to prepare your body for the coming heat loss and nutritional deficiencies that come with the cold winter months. The season calls for nourishing foods, called ojas-building foods, including root vegetables like carrots and beets, hard winter squash (pumpkins and butternut squash), ghee (clarified butter) and almonds. Coincidentally, our bodies begin to crave these foods in soups and stews – comfort foods – as the nights become longer and outdoor temperatures drop.

Now your skin seems to lose its summer “glow” as blood vessels constrict with colder temperatures (a process called vasoconstriction). Your pulse rate drops with the temperature. As weather turns cooler, your body protects itself from heat loss by reducing blood flow to the skin, leaving it dull and lusterless. This is where ojas-building foods can help – by stimulating blood flow to vital organs and tissues.

Fall is also the time to turn your attention to respiratory health, with the coming of cold and flu season. Cinnamon and dates share a few characteristics especially useful here: They are both demulcent expectorants that can soothe your throat when dry and help you eliminate thick mucus from the respiratory tract. Cinnamon and dates also share astringency, useful for toning the digestive tract.

Since dates are heavy for digestion, pureeing and mixing them with ginger makes them more readily digestible. Making a puree in your blender also helps by breaking down nutrients so they are more easily and quickly absorbed by the body.

The Ayurvedic health experts at Joyful Belly invite you to celebrate the arrival of autumn with a Date Shake with Cinnamon, a delicious and soothing tonic to stay balanced during the season of falling leaves.

Besides providing a tasty treat for any time of day, this recipe contains almonds and dates to build ojas and nourish blood plasma (called rasa in Ayurveda), giving your whole body a seasonal boost!

Cinnamon Date Shake


1/8 inch ginger
1/8 tsp cinnamon
1 cup almond milk
2 dates (dried)


Puree all ingredients in a blender. For a stronger restorative effect, add 1 tsp ghee (clarified butter) and substitute milk for almond milk.

Do you have a favorite recipe using dates or almonds? Share with us!

Source: Joyful Belly Ayurveda