Ayurveda and Constitution-friendly diet
Our constitution determines significantly how our food is absorbed and metabolized in our body. The Ayurvedic diet achieves health by the selection of food according to the body constitution and its preparation using specific herbs and spices. Spices stimulate the digestive organs and have a positive effect on the whole metabolism. Usually when our body is in a Dosha imbalance, we feel attracted to food which is unsuitable for it. Therefore Ayurveda advises to correct the imbalance at the earliest through six Rasas (flavours) which are present in selected spices and other foods.
In Ayurveda food is divided into six different Rasas (flavours): sweet, bitter, salty, sour, pungent (hot) and astringent. Each constitution type has differentiated dietary recommendations and preferred Rasas. The Rasas are directly related to the five elements and act in a specific manner on the three Doshas. Thus, for example, the Pitta Dosha is increased by pungent and sour and reduced by bitter and astringent. All six Rasas should be included in a balanced and nutritious meal. Thus, all areas of the body are nourished optimally and holistically.
In Ayurveda, the quality of food and its impact are considered and used in terms of digestion and its effect on the body. A harmonious diet with each meal wins new life energy for body and mind. Poor digestion creates Mala (residues) and Ama (toxins) that accumulate in the body. Their symptoms include fatigue, flatulence and bloating, and they continue to show that the digestive process is incomplete and Agni (digestive fire) was too weak. Thus the metabolism is impaired and the body loses its balance. Ayurveda offers, besides fasting and medical approaches, the use of adequate herb and spice blends to improve the digestion thus eliminating the problems. Ayurveda combines nutrition with spices as an essential part of a holistic diet and for balancing the Doshas.
Vata types are prone to digestive disorders. They shall therefore take cooked and easily digestible, warm food.
Preferred flavours: salty, sour and sweet.
Pitta types have a strong digestive fire. They can take warm and cold dishes of moderate consistency.
Preferred flavours: sweet, bitter and astringent.
Kapha types tend to have sluggish, slow digestion. They should eat more fresh fruits and vegetables, light meals and warm food. They can as well enjoy good spicy food.
Preferred flavours: pungent, bitter and astringent.
Mixed constitution (vata-pitta, pitta-kapha, vata-kapha) and Tridosha constitution (Vata – Pitta – Kapha) types shall follow the recommendations for all their Doshas.
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