THE AYURVEDIC WAY TO WELLNESS

THE ALTERNATIVE WORLD

Ayurvedic Diet

“When diet is wrong medicine is of no use. When diet is correct medicine is of no need.”

Aahar is the primary factor that balances  our doshas. Balanced and wholesome Aahar  nourishes the mind and the body and  provides energy in different forms.

 

What we eat has a profound effect on our mind as well as the body. It is not only important as to what we eat, but it is equally important as to how we eat.

 

Following are a few tips on diet which help in getting the best out of what we eat:

  • The diet, especially hard substances, should be properly chewed.
  • Wherever possible intake of curd or buttermilk should follow food.
  • It should neither be very hot nor absolutely cold.
  • Water should be avoided at least 15 minutes before food. The quantity of water after food should be small. Drink water often.
  • Heavy (Guru) food should be taken in a limited quantity.
  • Heavy food should not be taken at night. The proper time of night meal is two to three hours before going to bed. After night meal, it is better to go for a short walk.
  • After meals, heavy mental or physical work should be avoided. Some rest is advisable for proper digestion of food.
  • The food should be fresh, easily digestible and protein-enriched. If cooked food is kept for a long period of time, its positive qualities diminish, due to the existence of free radicles and oxidisation, and this when eaten, is harmful for our health.
  • One has to keep in mind that the acidic and alkaline contents of the foods do not exceed their upper limits. Excess of alkali is not as harmful as excessive acids in food, which might lead to acidity or other stomach related problems.
  • Avoid fried edibles.
  • Each meal must contain at least one protein-filled and one carbohydrate-filled dish. One could eat fresh vegetables, salads, fresh chutnies, pickles, papad and soup with a sprinkling of salt. Each individual should consume not more than 1/2 to 3/4 litre of oil per month.
  • Stale, tinned/ canned food and edibles that are kept in the open, cooked and uncovered or left cut and in the open are harmful in nature.

 

IMPROVE EATING HABITS

Animal-proteins such as milk and curds can be consumed with sprouted grains or vegetables, as these proteins are easily digestible.

Ayurvedic Kapha Diet

KAPHA DIET

Use this diet to help clear mucus, heaviness, sinus congestion, thick tongue coating, tirednesss, sluggishness, high cholesterol, oedema and during winter months.

General treatment

  • Please just eat what is appropriate for you. If you are intolerant of any food or simply do not like it then please avoid it.
  • Avoid yeast, salt, cheese, yoghurt, chocolate, and refined sugars and flours as these increase mucus.
  • Avoid overeating, especially at night.
  • Do not eat when you are not hungry. Do not eat between meals.
  • Do not eat cold foods
  • A primarily vegetarian diet is highly recommended.
  • Include ginger in your daily diet: take a pinch of fresh ginger root with a few drops of lemon juice before each meal.
  • Favour foods that are light, dry, and warm as these reduce mucus.
  • Reduce foods that are heavy, oily, and cold as these increase weight and mucus.
  • Favour foods that are spicy, bitter, and astringent (e.g. ginger, asparagus, tea) as these help to dry excess fluids in the body.
  • Reduce foods that are sweet, salty, and sour (e.g. cakes, crisps, vinegar) as these increase fluids in the body.

Dairy

Low-fat milk is better. Always boil milk before you drink it (making it easier to digest) and take it warm. Do not take milk with a full meal, or with sour or salty food. Add some cardamom or ginger to whole milk before boiling it to help reduce any mucus generating properties. Use goat’s milk or water milk down 50/50. A little ghee (clarified butter) is fine. Avoid eggs, cheese, yoghurt and buffalo milk.

Sweeteners

Use a little honey (2 tsp/day) as it helps to reduce mucus. Reduce all other sugar products.

Nuts

Reduce all nuts as they are too oily.

Vegetables

Increase asparagus, aubergine, beetroots, broccoli, cabbage, carrot, cauliflower, celery, garlic, ginger, green leaves, kale, onion, potato, pumpkin, radish, sprouts. Reduce okra, olives, tomatoes, cucumbers, sweet potatoes, and summer squash as these increase fluids.

Fruits

Lighter fruits, such as apples and pears, are better. Reduce sweet, heavy or sour fruits such as oranges, bananas, pineapples, figs, dates, avocados, coconuts, and melons, as these fruits increase mucus.

Beans

All beans are fine, except tofu as it is very cold.

Oils

Reduce all oils but flax, corn and sunflower is ok.

Grains

Increase barley, corn, buckwheat, quinoa and millet as these are slightly drying or warming. Avoid or do not take too much wheat, rice, or oats, as they increase heaviness and mucus.

Spices

Include all spices except for salt. Salt increases water retention and mucus whereas spices increase warmth in the body.

Ayurvedic Pitta Diet

PITTA DIET

Use this diet to help clear skin inflammations, itching, joint pain, hot flushes, acidity, ulcers, anger, irritation, infections, fever, late spring

General treatment

  • Please just eat what is appropriate for you. If you are intolerant of any food or simply do not like it then please avoid it.
  • Include Aloe Vera juice and rosewater daily
  • Avoid alcohol, coffee, tea, chocolate, cheese, yogurt, and animal products. Low quality oils are a major cause of inflammation.
  • Avoid sour, salty, and pungent foods as these aggravate inflammation.
  • Favour foods that are cool, refreshing and liquid. Fresh organic fruits and vegetables.
  • Favour foods that are sweet, bitter, or astringent as these reduce heat.
  • Reduce foods that are spicy, salty or sour as these increase heat.

Dairy

Milk, butter, and ghee are good for pacifying heat. Avoid yogurt, cheese, sour cream, and cultured buttermilk; these sour tastes aggravate inflammation.cream, powdered milks and soya milk.

Oils

Flax, hemp, borage, evening primrose, olive, sunflower, and coconut oils are best. Reduce sesame, almond, and corn oil, all of these increase heat.

Fruits

Favour sweet fruits such as grapes, limes, cherries, melons, avocado, coconut, pomegranates, mangoes, apples, berries, sweet and fully ripened oranges, pineapples, and plums. Reduce sour fruits such as grapefruits, lemons, olives, papayas and sour, not-yet-ripened oranges, pineapples, and plums as they can increase heat and acidity.

Spices

Cinnamon, coriander, dill, aniseed, cardamom, fennel, turmeric, fresh ginger and small amounts of black pepper are good, but the following spices strongly increase heat and should be taken in moderation: Asafoetida, dry ginger, cumin, fenugreek, clove, celery seed, salt, and mustard seed. Chilli peppers and cayenne should be avoided.

Beans

Avoid all beans except for tofu and mung lentils. Especially avoid peanuts as these can create inflammation.

Sweeteners

All sweeteners are good except for honey and molasses.

Grains

Wheat, basmati rice, barley and oats are anti-inflammatory. Reduce corn, rye, millet, and brown rice as they are a little heating.

Vegetables

Favour asparagus, cucumber, cooked beetroots, sweet potatoes, green leafy vegetables, pumpkins, summer squash, broccoli, cauliflower, celery, okra, lettuce, sprouted beans, peas, green beans. Avoid Solanaceae nightshade family; hot peppers, bell peppers, tomatoes, aubergines, potato (can be consumed in small portions). Also avoid Allium family; especially raw onions, garlic, radishes. Also avoid and raw beetroots, raw spinach and mustard greens as these all increase heat and acidity.

Meat and fish

Chicken, pheasant, and turkey are preferable; but beef, seafood, and egg yolk increase inflammation.

Superfoods

Chlorella, Spirulina, Wheat grass, Barley grass, Kalamath lake algae, seaweeds all help to cool the system and clear inflammation.

Ayurvedic Vata Diet

VATA DIET

Use this diet to help relieve nervous tension, cramps, pain, anxiety, insomnia, bloating, constipation, dryness.

General treatment

  • Just eat what is appropriate for you. If you are intolerant of any food or simply do not like it then avoid it. The diet is to enhance the assimilation of nutrients which will help calm the nervous system.
  • Emphasise foods that are warm, soupy and easy to digest.
  • Eat at regular times.
  • Eat to less than full.
  • Practice relaxation.
  • Avoid yeast, refined sugars, coffee, tea, tobacco, drugs, poor quality oils and extremely spicy foods as these aggravate the digestion and the nervous system.
  • Favour foods that are warm, heavy, and oily as these nourish the nervous system.
  • Reduce foods that are cold, dry, and hard as these aggravate digestion.
  • Favour foods that are sweet (e.g. wheat, milk, rice), sour (e.g. vinegar, yogurt, umeboshi plums, citrus fruit), and salty as these are all nourishing.
  • Reduce foods that are very spicy, bitter (e.g. coffee, chillies, green leafy vegetables), and astringent (e.g. apples, beans) as these aggravate digestion and disturb the nervous system.

Dairy

All dairy products nourish the nervous system. Always boil milk before you drink it, mix with cardamom seeds and drink it warm. Don’t take milk with a full meal or with fruit. Use organic milk. If allergic substitute with almond or rice milk. Avoid ice cream, powdered milks and soya milk.

Oils

All oils reduce dryness and nourish the nervous system. Emphasise Flax, hemp, sesame, ghee, olive, sunflower, evening primrose, borage and fish oils. Use these internally and externally.

Fruits

Favour sweet, sour, or heavy fruits, such as berries, bananas, avocados, grapes, cherries, lemons, limes, fresh figs, peaches, melons, plums, pineapples, mangoes, and papayas. Avoid dried fruits, uncooked apples, pears, pomegranates, cranberries as these can create wind.

Spices

Most of them, especially; asafoetida, cardamom, cumin, coriander, ginger, fennel, dill, cinnamon, salt, cloves, mustard seed, black pepper all help reduce gas and spasms in the digestive system.

Beans

Avoid all beans, except for marinated tofu and mung lentils and occasionally red lentils.

Sweeteners

All sweet flavours are good for nourishing the nervous system. Reduce refined white sugar. Avoid all sugars if bloating is present.

Grains

Rice (basmati, brown, wild), wheat, oats (cooked) and quinoa are very good for nourishing the nervous system. Reduce intake of barley, corn, millet, buckwheat and rye as these are a bit drying and can be difficult to digest creating wind. Avoid the rest

Vegetables

Asparagus, beets, cucumbers, carrots, and sweet potatoes are the best. Peas, green leafy vegetables, celery, summer squash, winter squash, and potatoes are best. Seaweeds are very beneficial. It’s best to avoid the Brassica family; brussel sprouts, broccoli, cauliflower and cabbage. Also avoid Solanaceae family; peppers, aubergines, potatoes and tomatoes. Raw vegetables, especially onions are banned as these all create wind.

Nuts

All nuts and seeds are good in moderation, especially soaked.

Meat and fish

Chicken, turkey, eggs and seafood are fine; beef should be avoided.

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