Ayurveda helps keep the body and mind in complete sync. The daily essential foods prescribed by Ayurvedic practitioners is not just good for keeping one’s health fine but also in keeping one’s mind sane. An optimum Ayurvedic diet can enhance your overall well being. It will not be a hyperbole to mention here that Ayurvedic diet has medicinal value. One of the most important features of an Ayurvedic diet is that gives importance to six tastes – Sweet (madhura), Sour (amla), Salty (lavana), Pungent (katu), Bitter (tikta), and Astringent (kashai). Including small portions of each of these tastes in your diet in the form of daily essential foods can help improve your health.
Before we head over to daily essential foods as prescribed by Ayurveda, it is important to understand the concept of Ayurvedic fire or agni. This pertains to the digestive fire as per Ayurveda which is essential for an optimum digestive process. Balancing your digestive agni is a key tenet in ayurveda. It is for this reason that ayurveda recommends a number of general practices for better digestion. Digestive agni can be compared to a burning log of fire. With a low flame the time taken to burn the log will be higher. With a bigger flame , the log will burn instantly. Either way there will be no balance. The metaphor here compares food to the log and fire to the digestive agni. The digestive fires in the human body should be balanced so that we can digest our meals efficiently.
Ayurveda suggests a list of foods and combinations that one should consume on a frequent if not daily basis.
Ginger and Lemon Juice
The concoction comprising ginger and lemon juice is highly recommended by Ayurveda. This mix does wonders for detoxification in the body and also helps obese people lose weight effectively without losing out on energy. The ideal time to consume this juice is before meals at least thrice a week.
Ayurveda describes Pomegranate Chutney as immensely medicinal in nature. The fruit peel, seeds, bark and leaves of the pomegranate plant have herbal properties.When chutney made from this fruit or plant is relished, different tastes like sweet , sour) and astringent evolve at different stages. It is light to digest and increases the moistness of tissues.
Fresh Fruit Juice at Normal Room Temperature
Fresh juices of most seasonal fruits, herbs or vegetables help in cleansing of the toxins, increasing the digestive power and enhancing the glow of the human skin. It is important to understand that what Ayurveda calls juice is a fresh beverage made from fresh fruit, vegetable, or herb which is consumed at room temperature.
Juicy carrots used to make soup consist of beta-carotene and healthy amounts of vitamin A. The carrot soup nourishes the blood and cools Pitta. The effect is prominent in the eyes, which feel softer and cooler after carrot soup. Carrot soup also acts as a sweetener.
Dried Figs and Raisins
Dried figs and raisins are rich sources of calcium and fibre. They enhance health, vitality and strength. The soluble fibres in both figs and raisins are useful in preventing coronary heart ailments. They also help in preventing hypertension since they are able to regulate sodium and potassium levels in the body.
Honey isn’t just a sweetener but the secret elixir of health in Ayurveda. When consumed with a raw chapati , it can prove wonders. Honey consists of glucose, fructose and sucrose. All these natural sugars provide the optimum amount of energy and heat to the human body. Oatmeal Oatmeal is highly recommended by Ayurvedic practitioners especially for people with pita dosha. Oatmeal helps to remove dead skin cells and acts as a natural remedy to acne and pimples. You can either consume oatmeal by preparing it in lukewarm water or just apply it on the skin. Oatmeal also helps control obesity.
Warm and fresh scalded cow milk is prescribed as an excellent nutrient in Ayurvedic diet. Its benefits are numerous. When digested properly, warm milk nourishes all the tissues, promotes balanced emotions, and helps to balance all the doshas. It is one of the most important foods to promote ojas.
Cilantro is an excellent source of vitamins A, K, and C, as well as copper, manganese, iron, magnesium, and calcium. The bio actives of this plant contain antimicrobial, antioxidant and detoxifying qualities. This is why Cilantro is considered as a good daily supplement as per ayurveda.
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