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Eating Rituals in Ayurveda

Eating Rituals in Ayurveda

According to Ayurveda, diets play an important role in keeping a person healthy. In Indian philosophy, the table manners are guided by balance in food for creation of ‘Ojas’. Ojas is the resultant of complete food digestion. Ojas provides energy, is positive and boosts up the immunity, endocrine, nervous and psychological systems of the body.

‘Ama’ is the opposite of Ojas. Thus, if the food is not properly digested or indigestion causes Ama. The result is toxin formation in the body and imbalance of body metabolism. Hence, eating is thought to be the most important activity that can have various positive and negative effects on the health. Some good eating habits according to Ayurveda are discussed in this article.

Ayurvedic Viewpoint on Diet

Following habits should be taken up to maintain a healthy body and mind:

  • Before you begin to eat, steady the mind and properly wash the feet and hands before the meal.
  • Start your meal with blessing.
  • Avoid eating when the mood is upset.
  • Cold water should be avoided with meals as it inhibits proper digestion and heat is required for digestion. Water at room temperature should be taken.
  • Freshly cooked food should be taken.
  • Mostly cooked foods should be followed with raw salads like cucumber, carrots and light color greens.
  • Foods which have been cooked slowly are digested easily and also retain the nutrients.
  • Milk should be avoided along with meals. It should be taken in warm state at night before bed. This is also because calcium is more easily digested when a person is lying down.
  • Above all, food should be chewed properly and enjoy the food.
  • While eating, prohibit talking or else, have a good conversation.
  • Don’t full your stomach, eat little less than you desire, as it will help in digestion.
  • Take rest after the meal, listen to relaxing music and have a good conversation.
  • After taking lunch in afternoon, is someone is relaxing, just lie down on your left side to help proper digestion.
  • Rest should not be taken after an evening meal and short walk should be taken.

The above are some of the rituals of eating beneficial for health. According to Ayurveda, including foods such as wheat, rice, mung beans, barley, asparagus, pomegranates, grapes, ginger, milk, ghee and honey are considered to be healthy. According to Ayurveda, consumption of heavy meats, yogurt, cheeses, processed foods, refined sugar, refined salt, coffee, bananas, tomatoes, black lentils and citrus fruits should be avoided.