Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Yogic diet recipes

Yogic diet  recipes   
by satyananda

- eat natural foods in moderation
- not necessary to be a vegetarian, but it is recommended in the higher stages of yogic practice
- at meal times 1/2 fill the stomach with food, 1/4 with water, and leave remaining 1/4 empty
- do not eat to the point of heaviness
- avoid heavy, oily and spicy foods
- eat to live rather than live to ea

Swami Sivananda’s Dietetic Rules
- take a moderate diet: stomach ¾ full
- eat only when hungry
- do not eat between meals
- eat at fixed times
- do not eat food that is too hot or too cold
- include raw vegies / fruit daily
- abandon too many combinations
- eat combinations that are compatible
- do not eat processed foods
- no need to peel many vegies and fruits
- do not overcook foods
- never reheat food
- eat in peaceful circumstances
- rest for ½ hour after eating
- avoid late dinners

Diet and the Gunas 

The Sattvic Diet
- augments the balanced state of body and mind
- increases vitality
- light, simple and supplies the correct nutrients
- fruits, nuts, milk, milk products, steamed vegetables, cooked grains, beans and lentils
- khichari is an example (rice or wheat, pulses, and vegetables, all cooked together)

Rajasic Food
- heavier
- increases metabolism and activates the nervous and endocrine systems
- demands attention as one must constantly satisfy the cravings which arise from this overactivity
- creates restlessness in the mind
- prepared with spices and oil or ghee
- meat and fish

Tamasic Food
- lowers the energy and produces inertia
- makes one ‘underactive, lazy and dull’
- parts of the physical organism may actually shut down due to it
- old and stale
- not cooked well or chewed well
- dead or highly processed foods

- Yoga advises but does not preach vegetarianism
- there is no fixed yogic diet
- it varies with climate, season, personality type and sadhana
- it may be summed up as the most natural, simplest to purchase, to prepare and to digest

Sources of Protein
No single vegetable protein contains all the appropriate nutrients required for a suitable protein intake, and so you must COMBINE different types of vegetable proteins in any vegetarian dish
- whole grains
- nuts and seeds
- legumes
- dairy

The best combinations of these are
- grains + legumes
- nuts/seeds + legumes
- grains + milk products

An Ayurvedic Approach to Diet - Harmonising the Doshas

Ayurveda describes digestion in three stages :
tastes: sweet, sour, salty, pungent, bitter, astringent
energetics : heating (sour, salty, pungent) or cooling (sweet, bitter, astringent)
post-digestive effects : anabolic or catabolic

Sweet: sugar, honey, rice, pasta, milk
Sour: lemons, yoghurt, plums, vinegar
Salty: any salty food
Pungent: chilli, cayenne, ginger, hot spices
Bitter: greens eg. rocket, endive, spinach
Astringent: beans, lentils, pomegranates, apples, pears


Vata Characteristics
- Combination: air and ether elements
- light, thin build
- performs activity quickly
- irregular hunger and digestion; constipation
- light, interrupted sleep; insomnia
- enthusiasm, vivaciousness, imagination
- excitability, changing moods
- quick to grasp new information, but quick to forget it
- tendency to worry
- tires easily; energy comes in bursts

Vata Diet
- warming & nourishing foods; avoid cold and raw
- favour foods that are warm, heavy and oily; minimise foods that are cold, dry, and light
- favour foods that are sweet, sour, and salty; minimise foods that are spicy, bitter, and astringent
- dairy
- sweetners (in moderation)
- oils & nuts
- reduce stimulants
- reduce beans (except tofu & split mung-beans)
- reduce brassicas; dry and light fruit eg. apples, pears, dried fruits


Pitta Characteristics
- Combination: fire and water
- medium build
- medium strength and endurance
- sharp hunger and thirst, strong digestion
- cannot skip meals
- tendency towards anger/irritability under stress
- fair, ruddy skin, often freckled; light coloured hair / reddish
- aversion to sun, heat
- enterprising character, likes challenges
- sharp intellect
- precise, articulate speech

Pitta Diet
- favour foods that are cool and liquid; minimise foods that are hot
- favour foods that are sweet, bitter & astringent; minimise spicy, salty or sour tastes
- reduce sour dairy products
- favour sweet fruits, reduce sour fruits
- tofu and split mung dhal are the better beans
- eat bitter foods to cleanse the liver
- reduce hot spices, salt, onions, garlic
- reduce oily, fried foods
- reduce caffeine, alcohol, red meat


Kapha Characteristics
- Combination: water and earth
- solid, powerful build; strong; great endurance
- steady energy; slow and graceful in action
- tranquil, relaxed personality; slow to anger
- cool, smooth, thick, pale and often oily skin
- slow to grasp new information, but good memory
- heavy, prolonged sleep
- tendency towards obesity
- slow digestion, mild hunger
- affectionate, tolerant, forgiving
- tendency to be possessive, complacent

Kapha Diet
- favour foods that are light, dry and warm; minimise foods that are heavy, oily, and cold
- favour foods that are pungent, bitter, and astringent; minimise foods that are sweet, salty and sour
- avoid dairy in general
- reduce sweetners, honey
- reduce oils and nuts
- most vegies ; lighter fruits are best eg. apples, pears
- all beans, except tofu
- all spices OK, except salt
- reduce red meat

Peace  love  harmony


by Swami Sivananda

1. Asana is the first Anga of the Ashtanga Yoga. When you are established in Asana, then only you will derive the benefits of Pranayama.

2. Spread a blanket on the floor and practise the Asanas over the blanket. Use a pillow or four-folded blanket for practising Sirshasana and its varieties.

3. Wear a Langotee or Kowpeen when you practise Asanas. You can have a banian on the body.

4. Do not wear spectacles when you do Asanas. They may be broken or they will injure your eyes.

5. Those who practise Sirshasana, etc., for a long time, should take light tiffin or a cup of milk after finishing the Asanas.

6. Be regular in the practice. Those who practise by fits and starts will not derive any benefit.

7. Asana should be done on empty stomach in the morning or at least three hours after food. Morning time is best for doing Asanas.

8. If the foundation of a building is not properly laid, the superstructure will fall down in no time, even so if a Yogic student has not gained mastery over the Asanas, he cannot successfully proceed in his higher courses of Yogic practices.

9. Japa and Pranayama should go hand in hand with Yoga Asanas. Then only it becomes real Yoga.

10. In the beginning you cannot perform some of the Asanas perfectly. Regular practice will give perfection. Patience and perseverance, earnestness and sincerity are needed.

11. Never change the Asanas. Adhere to one set tenaciously. If you do one set of Asanas today and some other tomorrow and so on, you cannot derive any benefit.

12. The more steady you are on the Asana the more you will be able to concentrate and make your mind one-pointed. You cannot get on well in your meditation without having a steady posture.

13. Mild Kumbhaka during the practice of Asanas augments the efficacy of Asanas and give increased power and vitality to the practitioner.

14. Everyone should select a course of a few Asanas to suit his temperament, capacity, convenience, leisure and requirement.

15. If you are careful about your diet, Asanas and meditation, you will have fine, lustrous eyes, fair complexion and peace of mind in a short time. Hatha Yoga ensures beauty, strength and spiritual success to the Yogic students.

16. A man can sit for 10 hours at one stretch motionless on the Asana and yet he may be full of desires. This is a mere physical practice like an acrobatic or circus feat. A man without dosing the eyes, without winking, without turning the eye-balls can practise Tratak for three hours and yet he may be full of desires and egoism. This is also another kind of physical exercise. This has nothing to do with spirituality. People are deceived when they see persons who can do the above practices. Fasting for 40 days is also another kind of training of the physical body.

17. Pranayama with Asanas before starting Japa and meditation is very good and conducive. It removes laziness and drowsiness of the body and mind. It steadies the mind also. It fills the mind with new vigour and peace.

18. Asanas can be practised on the sandy bed of rivers, open airy places and by seaside also. If you practise them in a room, see that the room is not congested. You should clean it every day.

19. A Vedantin is afraid to do Asanas on the ground that the practice will intensify
Dehadhyasa and militate against his practice of Vairagya. I have seen many Vedantins in a sickly condition with poor physique and dilapidated constitution. They can hardly do any rigid Sadhana. They may utter: “Om Om Om,” mechanically through lips only. They have not sufficient strength to raise the Brahmakara Vritti.

20. The body is closely related to the mind. Sickly, weak body is Jada. The body is an important instrument for Self-realisation. The instrument must be kept clean, strong and healthy.

Peace  love  harmony