Eating: a life-giving force or a poison
For Ayurveda, eating is the basis of health. Consuming food is not just absorbing substances, it is the intake of life-giving energy from nature that maintains the body and the spirit.
At the same time, it is important to have good digestion, which for Ayurveda followers is the digestive fire Agni.
If it is suppressed, food degradation is weak, slow, remains of food are accumulated in the digestive tract, toxins are released and spread throughout the body and damage it.
The aim is for food produces to be less processed, fresh fruits and vegetables being widely used.
In fact, the menu of Ayurveda followers is quite variated, besides numerous vegetables and fruits; it includes any meat, seafood, rice, beans, lentils, nuts, etc. In this variety, however, there are certain requirements without which the healthy effect would be lost.
With properly selected foods, in appropriate routines, time and way of eating, one can keep the diseases away from themselves. However, if this is not a habit, and these requirements are not being met regularly, this can lead to illness.
For example, if the meal is served for consumption more than 3 hours after its preparation, its vital energy is lost and it is not beneficial. So, even a dish made from products that are beneficial can turn into harmful food.
Having the meal itself should not be done while doing anything else on the side – computer, TV, reading, snacking as we are walking in a hurry on the street, and so on. One has to eat emotionally and mentally, focusing on food as a sacred act. Food and its serving – warmer, cooler, sour, spicy, etc. must be individually tailored to the type of body (Dosha) of the person. It is also important how we combine the food and the order of consumption. Combination and order of consumption is also important. Incorrect combinations may suppress the digestive fire Agni due to the different ways and times of degradation of the food. Indicative of the importance of food is also that Ayurvedic meals are invariably applied to all types of treatments.
Eating: according to the unique human code
The selection of food, its preparation and the way of consumption in Ayurveda are tailored in conformity with the Dosha of the individual. It reflects the ratio of the three energies/forces in the human body through which all processes and activities in the human body are carried out.
For every person, these forces are set at birth in a unique balance. In it, one or two of the energies predominate to a certain extent, the combinations being different.
The main types of dosha are Vata, Kapha, and Pitta. From a physiological point of view, Vata is the energy that activates the bloodstream and breathing, Pitta is the metabolism and Kapha is the power aimed at growth and respectively immunity.
For each Dosha, there are appropriate and inappropriate or harmful foods that can maintain the balance set by nature and can also disturb it. This disturbance confuses the processes in the body and the functions of organs and systems.
As the deviation from the equilibrium is greater, the more a person gets closer to a state of diseases and after a certain limit, the disease begins. Due to the great importance of nutrition in Ayurveda, from ancient times to present day, there are many Ayurveda books on both the general rules and the requirements of each of the three Doshas in detail. In general, it may be mentioned that Vata, for example, must contain many carbohydrates and proteins, limiting raw and cold foods.
For Pitta, lighter and rawer foods are recommended according to the season.
For Kapha, it is suitable to consume warm food and food with light protein; raw food should be restricted. Generally, a person should not eat if they are not hungry, because toxins are produced from the non-assimilated food. While eating, one should not talk because that’s how energy dissipates.
Food should not be swallowed hurriedly, it should be chewed for a long time and the food should be eaten calmly. If a person is in a big hurry, it is better to skip the meal.