AYURVEDA FOOD CHOICES

In general, recipes are primarily designed to provide you with the natural goodness of a healthy diet. Food choices are made from a wide selection of herbs, natural spices, and condiments commonly found in an Ayurvedic diet along with the vegetables and fruits which are readily available.

Herbs and Condiments  

Herbs and condiments are easily accessible and provide non-detrimental medicinal benefits that come as the added advantage of maintaining the natural wellbeing of an individual. Nowadays, when the world is experiencing a lot of diet and lifestyle incompatibility, food choices made with Ayurveda in mind are a good alternative for healthy dieting.   Foods for Dosha Types

Ayurveda believes that one has to have the dominance of a dosha within your system; and this dosha defines your basic constitution. You need to choose the foods in accordance to your basic dosha type — Vatta or the air, Pitta or the fire and Kapha or the phlegm dosha.   Therefore, the first step towards eating the right foods is to find out what your constitutional type or dosha is. This would be a necessary aid in choosing from a vast assortment of natural food components.

Merits of Eating Ayurveda Foods  

A lot of emphasis is made on the right food intake. Most of the ailments are believed to result from an incompatible diet or the wrong food intake and leading to an incorrect lifestyle. Most of all, the importance of food choices is high. Also, one is counseled to bring about a change in the Aahara (Daily food intake) and in the Vihara (everyday lifestyle). It has been specifically acknowledged that a dosha or body humor tends to get aggravated mainly by undertaking Aahara and Vihara of the properties similar to the respective doshas. This is because “like increases like.” Hence, the vitiated or aggravated dosha can only be nullified by taking foods which mainly oppose that particular dosha in properties.

Vatta Balancing  

In case you have more of Vatta in your system, or you are having some sort of Vatta aggravation; Vatta balancing foods are highly recommended for you.

■You need to consume more of the foods which oppose the properties of Vatta (cold, light, dry) which means that your food intake should be warm, heavy and unctuous.

■Food that is high in nutritive value and energy giving helps subside the air distorted humor.

■Some herbs like bramhi, shankhpushpi that are intellect promoting would help to keep the mind fixed and stable. Ayurveda foods would generally be of great benefit here.

■Out of the six tastes, you may choose foods which are primarily sweet, salty and sour and also the foods prepared from the other three tastes, i.e. bitter, pungent and astringent are discouraged.

■Intake of oil of til seeds (sesame seed) is also recommended to allay vatta and keep the humor in control. Use some warming oil like Sesame seed oil or Mustard oil for preparing your Vatta balancing diet.

■Stimulating and digestive herbs and condiment powders when included in everyday food, helps to keep the gastric fire upright. This is because according to Ayurveda, a Vatta person by and large has disturbed gastric fire or vishamagni.

Pitta Balancing  

When your Pitta dosha is imbalanced and aggravated, you tend to have more of fire in your system. So as to allay this humor, you need to choose Pitta balancing foods.

■As the gastric fire is vigorous in case you have increase of Pitta dosha, you need to snack more often especially on the right foods so as to avoid gastric burning and hypoglycemia. The low sugar levels due to easy combustion of food would further cause undue irritation and weakness.

■The three tastes that have been optional in balancing Pitta dosha are sweet, bitter and astringent.

■More sweets, succulent fruits, sweetened deserts and fruit juices are rather recommended for the fire types.

■If you want the Pitta dosha to be balanced, foods made with ghee (clarified butter), more so on ghee prepared with cooling and calming herbs.

■Milk and milk products are another dietary benefit for balancing Pitta dosha and thus may be incorporated in your everyday foods.

Kapha Balancing  

For balancing Kapha dosha or the phlegm body humor, your everyday diet intake should contain more food choices that go against the basic traits of Kapha.

■Make your choice of foods with more of the three rasas (tastes) that are pungent, bitter and astringent which are recommended in Ayurveda therapy to alleviate phlegm.

■Moreover, as against the basic properties of the phlegm humor, a Kapha person’s food should be somehow rough, light, potent and hot.

■Foods prepared with most of the stimulating spices and condiments are favorable.

About the Author

Dr. Sonica Krishan is an Author, Freelance Health Writer, Editor, Ayurveda Consultant at Herboveda and Holistic Healing Coach based at Chandigarh, India. She has a Bachelors in Ayurvedic Medicine and Surgery and also an Advance Diploma in Naturopathy and Yoga.  She has authored three natural home cure books: Herbal Healers, Home Remedies, and Healing Through Ayurveda. You may contact her at sonicakrishan@gmail.com or visit her website http://www.herboveda.co.in.

Note – Information presented in this article is solely for the purpose of imparting education on Ayurveda and is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or mitigate any disease. If you have a medical condition, please consult a qualified health professional.