DIGESTION ~ THE CORNERSTONE OF HEALTH
According to ayurveda, digestion is the cornerstone of health. Even further, ayurveda has long recognized the importance of environment to one’s health and goes on to explain that what you see, hear, taste, smell, feel and think are all important for your overall well-being and health. Interestingly, it has been estimated that nearly 6 million people in the U.S. experience indigestion annually. Indigestion, heaviness in the body, retention of flatus and constipation, and/or loose bowel movements are the common signs and symptoms of indigestion [ajirna], as described in the classical texts. Below are simple considerations to help improve one’s digestion, overall health and well-being.
10 Simple Considerations For Optimal Digestion
1. Eat wholesome food.
2. Eat your meals at regular times.
3. Do not rush meals.
4. Appreciate your meals [i.e. the smell, taste, feel and appearance of the food].
5. Chew your food properly.
6. Start your meals with an appetizer like soup and end it with a sweet dish [i.e. payasam].
7. Avoid too much liquids just before and during meals.
8. Eat food with a pleasant and positive mind.
9. Consider eating while sitting in a cross-legged position [i.e. sukhasana pose].
10. Walk a few steps after finishing the meal.
*Special gratitude to Dr. A. Rangaprasad Bhat [Ayurvedic Physician]
For the insightful contributions to the above considerations.
Advice From The Experts:
I asked several highly respected individuals in the field of Ayurveda, what are some basic considerations to help improve digestion and this is what they had to say …
“Gratitude and blessings for ancestors, meal contributors and self before mindfully partaking meal.”
– Sharon Kapp, Ayurvedic Professional
“Fill half of the stomach with food, a quarter with water & leave the rest (1/4) empty so that the food can properly ‘cook’ and be digested.”
– Anupama Butani, Ayurvedic Professional
“Ajeerna [indigestion] is a disturbed agni [digestive] condition so any lifestyle behavior pattern or food/herb(including spices) that improves agni and burns ama will be therapeutic.”
– Dr. Bill Dean, Medical Doctor and Ayurvedic Professional
“Mental attitude plays big role in digestion. Eating is one of the necessities for a happy, healthy and long life. The other main thing is we should eat food according to the right combination of dosha type and spices along with the right mental attitude. Therefore, keep calm before eating.”
– Chanchal Khosla, Ayurvedic Professional
“Consider regular exercise, yoga asanas, and walking to help stoke the agni fire. Likewise, skip unhealthy snacks and take up the habit of drinking warm water – warm water helps to dispels gas.”
– Sanghee Chon Davidson, Ayurvedic Professional
“Eat with gratitude, enjoy your food. Eat with people you love. Eat clean tasty food. Eat in a clean nice atmosphere. Savor the moment.”
– Chitra Eder Turley, Ayurvedic Professional
“Silently say, “thank you” or “OM” to imbue your food with even more prana. Likewise, consider teas such as fennel tea, lemon/ginger/honey teas and/or lassis to help improve digestion. Lastly, eat in a peaceful environment.”
– Mary Bruck, Ayurvedic Professional
Educational Purpose Only. Not Medical Advice.