Food compatibility in Ayurveda
Have you ever wondered if your ill health has something to do with your food and the way you eat it? Most of us do not even believe that food can make you ill. How would you explain food poisoning then?
Nowadays more and more people are eating out. Either because of their busy life or simply because they have no idea how to cook a proper meal. Sadly most restaurants, cafes, take-away places are all missing the vital information about how to prepare our food. We are more about what TASTES good not what IS good. Sometimes these strange combinations we get in the restaurants don't even taste right, but because we are paying lots of money for it, it must be worth it, isn't it?!
There are ingredients which are not supposed to be mixed together and foods that should be eaten only during certain time of the day. Why, you ask? Simply because if eaten in a wrong way, wrong time or with a negative mood will become AMA* (*toxins/undigested foods) in our body and AMA is what is making us ill or imbalanced. Even a simple cold or ezcema is an indication of an imbalance in our body.
I will share here with you some simple tips how we should eat our food according to Ayurveda.
Incompatible food combinations:
Fish and dairy products (think fish pie!)
Different animal proteins together in one meal like fish and meat, beans and meat, egg and fish etc.
Sour fruits and dairy products together (think milkshakes, cheesecake!!)
Animal and vegetable proteins together like beans and chicken, chicken and coconut milk
yogurt and beef
Meat and milk
Melons with anything together (Melons should be eaten alone)
Honey in hot drinks
Ghee and Honey taken together in equal proportions
Milk and banana (banana milkshake!!)
Mixed fruit salads
Bread with yeast and milk
Yogurt with starches
Tips what to eat when:
leave at least 1 hour between different proteins
the digestion is its optimum level during 11 am- 2pm, this is the time to have your biggest meal
carbs are better when eaten during dinner time if you are Vata Or Pitta constitution (helps with sleep)
Bread with butter, baked fruits, rice porridge are great breakfast ideas for Vata and Pitta.
Kapha doesn't necessarily need to have a breakfast if not hungry
Your meal should consist of 1 type of carbs, 1 type of protein and 1 type of veg
Only drink room temperature or warm water during your meals if needed
Leave 3-4 h between your dinner and bedtime
Do not eat when you are not hungry (especially Kaphas)
Fruits should be eaten alone and at least half an hour to 1 hour after or before meal
Kaphas should not eat dairy products before bed (or anyone who has problems with mucus)
Ayurveda also talks about how different seasons affect us and how we should eat during each season.
Autumn with windy, rough, cold weather is Vata season. During the winter we have damp, heavy and cold weather and these are Kapha qualities. Spring is becoming warm, moist, all the snow is starting to melt away and so is Kapha going slowly over to Pitta. Summer is Pitta season with hot, sharp, bright qualities.
How to stay in balance during different seasons:
During deep winter stay away from kapha aggravating foods such as dairy, too much butter, too many heavy cakes, heavy meat, creams, banana, avocado, salads, cheese
Drink warming herbal teas like cinnamon, ginger, Spiced teas like Masala chai.
Use warming spices in your food such as ginger, cinnamon, cardamom, cloves, black pepper
Use less fats like ghee and butter in your food
Do not drink cold drinks or eat cold food
Ginger is a great addition to your meals and drinks as well as black pepper
Eat warm foods and drink
Stay away from Sweet, sour, salty foods
No dairy products
Honey is beneficial during the first part of Spring (Do not cook with honey or use in hot drinks!)
Eat cooling foods like coconut, white meat, carbs
Add cooling herbs to your food like coriander seeds, cumin
Don't eat overly hot meals and drinks
Drink coconut water and normal water more than usual if you sweat more
Heavier foods are better since Pitta fire is up and helping to digest quicker
Do not eat spicy or pungent food
Add ghee to your food
Eat grounding foods such as rice with ghee, mashed potatoes
Do not eat salads, nuts and seeds, porridge made with water, dry fruits, high protein
Do not eat light food, proper meals help to keep your digestion in balance and sleep in order
Milk with cinnamon and nutmeg before bed helps with insomnia
This is a short guide how to keep yourself healthy according to Ayurveda. If you have any kind of imbalance already there, it is better to get some advice from a good Ayurvedic Practitioner!