Ayurveda Wisdom: Food for Health
It is rightly affirmed in Classic 500 BC, ‘If diets are wrong, medicines are of no use and if diets are right, medicines are of no need’. Ayurveda rightly stresses the need to acknowledge the daily diet as the very necessitate to gain and maintain the natural health.
It has been long back acclaimed in our ancient text that the right kind of diet is adjuvant to not only the five bodily senses, but also is perquisite for the ripe age as it manifests in the body tissues, senses, bodily glow and Ojas or the vital energy, health, happiness as well as prosperity. Mainly Ayurveda states that the right type of food promises strength, well-being, longevity and life of the individual taking it. This is because when the food is taken in the right manner, it invigorates the Agni or the gastric fire.
On the contrary, if the food is not taken in proper manner, then whatever the nutritive benefits it may contain, the body remains unable to derive the same. Not only this, the toxicity or the Ama (indigested food) that is thus produced due to wrong food combinations or erroneous manner of taking the food, may further result into forming so many maladies and grave diseases.
7 Modes to how Food could be more Healthy & Favourable!
There seven modes of choosing the correct and compatible diet that are acclaimed as Sapta kalpanas are:
Swabhava or the Basic Nature
You need to understand the basic nature of the food that is to be consumed. There are foods like Moong dal that is light by nature and is easily digestible, whereas the Urad dal, milk and milk products are naturally heavy and therefore may take longer time to digest. Similarly different foods may bear properties like being naturally unctuous or dry; or these may be hot or cold in accordance to their natural manifestation and thus affect your digestion and overall health. Be your own guide and watch out for which kind of foods suit you more and which need to be restricted.
Samyoga or the Right Combination
There are some diet items that when taken all by themselves have a useful effect whereas when taken in combination these tend to exert an overall diverse effect. Like for instance foods like ghee and honey when taken together in same quantity becomes highly toxic. Similarly, taking milk and fish together becomes toxic and results in the formation of skin maladies.
Sanskara or the Expertise
Some positive qualities may be imbibed in food with accumulative effect of processes like use of water, fire, preserving in specific containers in complete hygienic conditions, mixing, churning with perfumed or herb decoctions, fresh juices etc. These processes add on to the basic qualities of the food products.
Maatra or the Right Quantity
There are prescribed variations for the intake of particular food-stuffs. These may be ingested in two forms:
– Either all the food items are mixed together and taken from therein; or
– They are kept separate and taken in individually in specific quantity.
Desha or the Place of Production
There are separate indications for the place from which the raw material has been extracted and also the place where the product is being consumed. This seems to go in tune with the dates of manufacturing and expiry of all that we eat. The place specification in Ayurveda relates to the environment and climate conditions in totality of the specific area.
Kaala or the Accurate Time
The correct timing for taking up the meal is also equally significant as this is directly proportional to the digestion, absorption as well as proper assimilation of diet. This may further depend on the physiological nature, seasonal impact and the state of wellness of the individual. Ayurveda counsels the right time of food intake as to when the prior meal has been fully digested and there is a feeling of natural hunger.
Upyoga or the Precise Utility
This mode counts for the appropriate and discreet rules and regulations laid down in our ancient holistic text in relation to taking of the meal. This mainly stresses on practices like maintaining proper hygiene, offering ritual mantras or prayers, eating with mental contentment and delight and taking health food that is easily digestible and is bestowed with qualities of being nutritive, unctuous, warm and light.