50% | Health

Fifty Percent Of Your Health Is In Your Hands

After 20 minutes of sun salutations and abhyanga and during warm/cold shower, blood flows towards extremities and surface of the body and is good for your health. Vasodilatation happens. It also stimulates saman vayu to secrete digestive juices. After a nice warm shower or bath, everyone should feel hungry, a sign of good health. If you don’t then it is a signal for you to watch your digestive system. This is a simple yet cautionary note from Ayurveda. Many times that first refreshing cup of coffee or milk tea is the culprit. Just swapping it with a long herbal tea can resolve the issue. There’s so many tricks as such in Ayurveda which will help better your health in the most efficient way.

What to make for breakfast is the harrowing question everyone deals with every morning. Most of us do not want to think about it on a daily basis. They prefer to have cereals, milk, yogurt, veggies, fruits, cold cuts, eggs, and coffee. Or some snack, a croissant or sandwich and rush to work. Many pick up the coffee on the way and drink while driving. Anyway, you feel fed! The same is about lunch and dinner.

To have a nice balanced one-dish breakfast, lunch, and dinner, you need to do 10-minute preparation on the previous night. Let’s make different groups of food articles that are consumed for breakfast. 

The Ayurvedic theory of properties of foods is based upon tastes, post-digestive (metabolism) effect, and formation of tissues including the mind. Another theory of compatible and incompatible food substances also needs to be taken into account. 

Six tastes are perceived by different parts of the tongue and also the buccal cavity. Sweet, sour, salt, pungent (hot/spicy), bitter and astringent. Each taste brings out a specific response of the digestive system and tissues. Sweet does not mean sugary. Sweet is the natural basic taste of many food items like wheat, rice, lentil, meat, fish, figs, apple, cabbage, pumpkin, and many others. Lemons, cherries, strawberries are sour, while bitter gourd, fenugreek is bitter and spinach, turnip, celery are astringent. It is needless to say that green or red chillies, black pepper are pungent (hot), and salts are salty. As compared to the substances having predominantly sweet taste others are less in number. Every substance may have one predominant taste and two or more after-tests or subtle tastes. The theory also guides that each meal : breakfast, lunch, and dinner, should contain all six tastes.

A simple yet, six taste menu for one day can be :

Breakfast – Dry fruits of 3/4 types i. e. Almonds, Figs, Cashew, Apricots Walnuts, Dates, Pistachios, Plums, Eggs, Milk or Yogurt 

Lunch – Legumes or Meat, bread, salads, and yogurt or buttermilk

Dinner – Easy to digest meat ( fish / chicken), rice or whole wheat pasta, soup.

Garnishes of cumin and pepper, aniseed, ajwain would add the astringent taste to the meal.

Fresh pasteurized milk is a complete food that is to be consumed separately daily unless those are allergic to lactose. Ayurvedic texts have described 8 different kinds of milk – cow, goat, sheep, mare, camel, etc., with nutritional properties and effects on the body. Cow milk is the best among all and praised as Rasayana in Charaksamhita which is the oldest compendium of medicine. Mixing fresh raw fruits and milk is not advised because their biological properties are incompatible. Also, milk and yogurt should not be mixed. So one can have either milk or yogurt or fruits for breakfast. Fruits or fruity vegetables like cucumber, carrot, sugarbeet, and yogurt which is a compatible mixture, can be consumed at breakfast or with lunch but not after the sunset. 

It is best to have the turmeric latte with a pinch of cardamom or saffron at bedtime.

Sense organs play the most important role in the process of digestion. That’s why the food should not only be nutritious but also be colourful and full of flavours.  The gastronomic tour beginning each day has to be tasty and pleasurable. The saying goes “you are what you eat !” It means your food not only nourishes your body but it also nourishes your soul

Despite going by the rules people fall sick but the brighter side is that, they recover well and quickly. It is less likely that they fall prey to hidden diseases like diabetes. When you are sick, first change your food to wholesome (pathya) items and boost your immunity.  This is your 50 percent to be healthy and happy. 

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