How To Follow An Ayurvedic Diet For Weight Loss

Ayurveda originated in India and is made from combining two words, ayur which means life and veda which means science. Therefore Ayurveda stands for the science of life. Ayurvedic Diet emphasises on the nutritional information of whole foods and eliminates unprocessed food from our diet. It tries to incorporate healthy food for men and women in our everyday consumption. MH and Dr Rohini Singh, owner of Nutrikaya, answer some basic questions regarding the diet.

1. What Is Ayurvedic Diet?

Dr Singh breaks it down for us, “An Ayurvedic diet is an eating plan that provides guidelines for when you eat, what you eat and how you eat to boost your health, prevent or manage disease and maintain wellness. If you follow an Ayurvedic diet, you can keep all your doshas, chakras...everything in a balanced state.”

2. How Is It Different From A Regular Diet?

Dr Singh tells us, “Yes of course, Ayurvedic diet is different from a regular diet as it focuses on prakriti (body type) of each person, as every person is different from the other. One food type might suit one person but not the other.”

She adds, “In Ayurveda, the three doshas are vata, pitta and kapha. The doshas correspond to different body types, tendencies, personality traits and nutritional needs. Each dosha is made up of five basic elements — ether (the upper regions of space), air, fire, water and earth — and each person has a unique combination of the three doshas that determines his or her physical and psychological characteristics. The goal of Ayurvedic practices, including following an appropriate Ayurvedic diet, is to prevent imbalances in the doshas. Imbalances can be due to any combination of an unhealthy lifestyle, nutrient deficiencies, too much or too little physical activity, chronic stress, seasonal fluctuations and toxin exposure.”

3. What Are The Benefits Of Such A Diet?

Dr Singh says, “A Personalised diet is very important in Ayurvedic medicine to prevent disease and optimise well-being, both physical and mental. Ayurveda is said to addresses the whole person — the body, mind and spirit — which means that diet, stress management, sleep, use of herbs and/or supplements and movement all come together to support overall health.”

4. Is There A Specific Plan That Should Be Followed?

There are a few steadfast rules about nutrition in an Ayurvedic diet and lifestyle. Most of these represent a commonsense approach to healthy eating as a whole. Dr Singh gives us some good health tips to be followed.

  • Eat freshly prepared foods at every meal.
  • Choose organic and locally grown produce and grains whenever available.
  • Choose all six tastes at every meal: sweet, sour, salty, bitter, pungent and astringent.
  • Reduce your consumption of packaged and processed foods.
  • Choose the five sattvic, or healing, foods in their organic form whenever possible:
    milk, ghee, almonds, honey, fruit.
  • Let vegetables and fruit make up 50 to 60 percent of your daily food intake.
  • Eliminate unhealthy oils: hydrogenated or partially hydrogenated oils, margarine and shortening.
  • Reduce your consumption of frozen and canned and processed food.
  • Be moderate and avoid extremes.

Ayurvedic diet deconstructs the complexity of our everyday food and pushes us towards whole and unprocessed foods leading to a more healthy lifestyle. Dr Singh recommends to an Ayurvedic Diet for better health and nutrition.