Mankind has always been searching for health and happiness; one does not exist without the other. The word 'Health' comes from the Indo-European root Kailo meaning 'Whole'. As defined by the W.H.O., health is “A state of complete physical, mental and social well-being and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity.” According to the classical texts of Ayurveda, a healthy person will be one whose physiology is integrated and balanced, and whose soul, mind and senses remain blissful.
Human beings opt various methods to keep them healthy, e.g. through diet, exercises, nutritional. supplements or different kinds of medicines. Among all these above mentioned methods, intake of balanced food followed by a proper dietary regimen, is the simplest and the best natural way of getting perfect health. By the addition of balanced diet in our routine, it is possible to enjoy not only the freedom from shackles of diseases but also we can attain positive and permanent state of well-being.
The life span can be extended well beyond what is commonly accepted as normal, and one can expect to live every day of his life in vibrant and radiant health.
The root cause of any disease is the accumulation of impurities or toxins in the body. The Ayurvedic term for this is 'ama'. Ama is the result of improper diet and incomplete digestion. Following the personalized dietary guidelines will help in preventing the accumulation of ama and will start cleaning the body of existing deposits. Some general guidelines that apply to everyone are as follows:
1. Eat a balanced diet that includes all six tastes at least once a day.
2. As much as possible, eat food that is fresh, wholesome and home-cooked. Avoid food that has unnatural additives and preservatives, and food that is stale, fermented, left over, highly processed or full of indigestible ingredients. “Nature knows the best”, so a diet of natural, freshly prepared, warm food is ideal.
3. If possible, it is best to take the largest meal at midday. This is because the sun is at its peak at noon, and our digestive 'fire' is also naturally at its peak.
4. In the evening, avoid heavy foods such as meat, cheeses and other cultured foods completely, because they are hard to digest even under the normal conditions.
5. Our digestive system works most efficiently when it is given one meal at a time and ample time to digest this meal. So the habit of continuous eating or frequent snacking in between the meals will certainly overload even the healthiest system and result in deposits of ama.
6. Eat at regular time everyday. That way, the body becomes habitual to periods of rest and activity, and gives its full power to the job at hand.
7. According to Ayurveda, cooked food is actually more nutritious than raw food because it is easier to digest and assimilate.
8. It is better to follow a more vegetarian diet. But if one is non-vegetarian then it is better to avoid red meats. Red meats are heavy and full of fats that are almost impossible to digest. A vegetarian diet is recommended because it is purer, more nutritious and more digest able. The typical vegetarian diet closely meets the commonly accepted dietary recommendations for healthy eating. Vegeterian diet is low in saturated fats and rich in fiber, complex carbohydrates,.
9. Take sufficient time to taste the food in real sense. This helps in release of various digestive enzymes which ultimately trigger our digestive system to do its job properly and completely.
10. Resist the temptation of listening music, reading news paper or watching T.V. during meals. Don't bring work, important decisions, bad moods or arguments to the dinning table.
All of these guidelines may seem like common sense, and of course, they are. But if we make them a habit in our life, they can make a big difference in our health status.