It's ginger season, people!
Late fall and early winter is Vata season in Ayurveda, which means life is cold, dry, and rough (especially inside when the heat is on). Outside the morning dew freezes into snow and ice. Plants are busy storing energy in their roots where it's protected from the season's cold winds.
Our bodies need the same protection! We're all running around with hats, gloves and boots these days. Gotta keep that body warm. Ayurveda recommends we enjoy warming, dense foods and spices to create seasonal balance.
And with the holidays on our heals, now's the time to play with festive flavors - like this gingerbread latte!
You'll love the grounding + warming holiday blend of ginger, cinnamon, cloves and molasses in this delicious medicinal elixir!
Read all about the nourishing ingredients in this holiday elixir.
Ginger is a Vata staple in any Ayurvedic pantry. It's a warming rhizome that is anti-inflammatory and antibacterial. It helps digestion and nausea and can even help with joint pain (analgesic). It will help to clear congestion, and many people use it to treat colds and the flu. In Ayurveda, ginger had been called "the universal medicine." The fresh ginger in this recipe is especially good for imbalanced Vata, but if you like a hotter quality you could substitute dried ginger.
Cinnamon is effective for harmonizing the flow of circulation, in Ayurveda this theory is called vyana vayu. it's excellent for strengthening and warming your constitution. Cinnamon is also said to help the absorption of medicines.
Cloves are another flavorful heating spice that's perfect during Vata season. They're a stimulant for the lungs and disinfectant for the lymphatic system. This rajasic (stimulating) herb is heating and energizing, not mention being a powerful analgesic (this means helpful for pain relief).
Molasses gives this latte its gingerbread taste. It's a sugar source that's rich in vitamins and minerals such as manganese, magnesium, copper, selenium, iron & calcium. This dark and dense sweetener is very grounding and a fun holiday flavor.
Cordyceps, an edible and medicinal mushroom, has an extraordinary ability to increase energy and reduce fatigue - without any caffeine! Its energizing effects are due to its beta-glucans, which deliver oxygen to the body on a cellular level. This quickly increases energy and stamina. Cordyceps also significantly boosts adenosine triphosphate (ATP) levels in the body. ATP is the body's main energy supply source and is required for all cellular processes. It's popular among athletes and the elderly because it is so effective at improving peak performance and counteracting lethargy.
Collagen provides a rich source of two amino acids you can't get from any other source - glycine and proline. These two amino acids are required for the body to make collagen. 35% of collagen in the body is made up of glycine, and 25% is made up of proline. Add to that the fact that collagen makes up 25-35% of the total protein in our bodies, and you get a sense for how beneficial hydrolyzed collagen can be for our overall well-being. Some cool benefits of consunming collagen include: hair, skin, and nail health, joint strength & recovery, and improved digestion since it naturally binds to water and helps food move more easily through the digestive tract. I'm a huge fan of hydrolyzed collagen!
Herbal coffee is a roasted dandelion based tea. You can find a lot of different brands out there to try. My personal favorite is Dandy Bland powder because it's just so simple to use, and tastes a little like espresso to me. I love me some espresso! If you love coffee and can tolerate it's stimulation effects, then feel free to sub out herbal coffee with regular coffee. ☕️
Energizing Gingerbread Latte
It's mise en place time! (the French term to gather up and measure everything out as preparation)
2 cups hot water
1 tbs herbal coffee powder (I like Dandy Blend brand, no affiliation)
½ cup full-fat coconut milk
1 serving hydrolyzed collagen (I like Great Lakes brand, no affiliation)
½ tsp cordyceps powder (I like Root & Bones brand, no affiliation)
1 tbs molasses
1 tsp honey
1 tsp chunk fresh ginger
½ tsp cinnamon
¼ tsp cloves
a few drops vanilla monk fruit/stevia (optional, to taste)
1. The quick version: blend all ingredients until frothy.
2. The simmered version: heat the spices (slice up the ginger) and water in a pot on low for 10-15 minutes. Strain into a blender with remaining ingredients and blend until frothy. Enjoy this one in your favorite holiday mug!
Could it get any simpler?
Go have fun with this potion and infuse your day with a little holiday spirit.