Foods that are conducive to yogic practice and progress in spirituality is defined as Yogic diet. The primary purpose of doing yoga is to control the mind. The wrong practice, habits and consumption of wrong food are detrimental to the progress in yoga. Moreover, the food is one of the important factors among them. It is believed that mind and food are related to each other, so the type of food you consume have an immediate effect on the mind. Following a yogic diet is as important as yoga practice.
There is a ritual of drinking lemon water on an empty stomach in yogic diet, which eliminates the toxic diet and acids. Moreover, the lemon water is extremely alkaline, detoxifies and wakes ups all organs. You can also enhance its power by adding rock salt.
There is no mention of carbs, proteins and fats in the yogic diet. The food is divided into four categories sattvic, rajasic and tamasic. The sattvic diet is helpful for clarity of mind and physical health. The food is plant-based, light, extremely alkaline and Eco-friendly. The sattvic food contains fresh fruits, green leafy, nuts and grains. Yogis only follow the Sattvic way of eating.
The food which gives you physical and emotional strength is consumed under yogic diet. Moreover, cooked food is given less importance as its fibre, nutrients and enzymes are destroyed to quite an extent. The method of sprouting is given more importance under yogic diet plan.
The yogic diet is incomplete without ghee, coconut oil and soaked nuts or seeds. They make food appetizing, digestible and satisfying. Moreover, they also heal the mind. The good fats improve memory as well neural conductivity
The yogic diet does not include meat, fish, poultry, or eggs. You can get all the proteins, vitamins, and minerals you need without them. A yogic diet is a balanced combination of:
- Dairy products
Whole, fresh, unprocessed nutritious foods give you energy and strength. When your diet consists of nutritious and sustaining foods and you eat only what you know you can digest, then you are on your way to a healthy, happy, and holy life.
Dairy products are on the list. This is because when you practice Kundalini Yoga and Breath of Fire, it tends to eliminate mucous. Mucous keeps the breathing passages lubricated and protects the membranes. You may need to replenish the system with a certain amount of mucous, which dairy products can stimulate. If you are allergic to cow products, then try goat products, which are easier to digest.
You are what you eat. If you are free to live a quiet, contemplative life, a sattvic diet is perfect. For those who wish to maintain a meditative mind but also must live and work in the world, a diet consisting of sattvic and some rajasic foods is best. For those who practice demanding disciplines, like Kundalini Yoga or marital arts, rajasic foods are necessary, along with sattvic foods. For all these lifestyles, tamasic food is best avoided.
- Graceful, peaceful, disciplined, intuitive, sensitive.
- Most fruit and vegetables, sun foods, and ground foods.
- Active, positive, demanding.
- Stimulating herbs and spices, many earth foods.
- Impulsive, dull, angry, confused.
- Meat, fish, poultry, eggs, alcohol, intoxicating drugs. Vata, Pitta, and Kapha Doshas
Ayurveda, the ancient holistic health sister science to yoga, recognizes that health is a state of balance between the body, mind, and consciousness. In ancient times, food was considered medicine. The principles of healthy eating were well-known and the healing properties of foods and herbs were used to correct imbalances. One of the most important aspects of the system of Ayurveda is the tridoshas, or forces that generate and maintain physical and mental health:
Vata (air): sustains the body and originates every kind of physical movement in the body. It controls the mind and senses and causes elimination of wastes.
Pitta (bile): responsible for digestion, heat, the digestive fire, and the formation of blood.
Kapha (phlegm): nourishes and lubricates the body, maintains sexual potency, and lends mental balance to the individual.