The Shades of Yoga Teacher Training is held in Ubud: a haven for healthy living, with dozens of the restaurants offering delicious raw, vegan and vegetarian meals. While working on your yoga practice and self-awareness, it’s ideal for experimenting with a completely new diet – and quickly, feel the benefits too!
Eating raw is often said to boost energy levels. Because the food is not heated enough to kill the enzymes, let alone the food itself, it still has all its life energy stored inside for you to ingest. This can mean a boost in energy leading to less need for sleep, and more rewarding sleep when you do need it!
If you think back to how the first humans would have eaten, cooking wasn’t an option so it makes sense that our bodies work well with raw food (this may include meat, but that is your dietary preference). Cooking not only destroys some of the antioxidants and enzymes in the food, it can also kill some of the bacteria that can be classed as “good”. Cooking foods in some oils can also produce traces of trans fats, which are very undesirable to add into our diet.
A raw diet, like other diets, will not suit everyone’s body type. Some people will find raw food is cleansing for the mind, body and soul – it can lead to a feeling of heightened awareness and sporadic thoughts, however for some people this is not necessarily positive. In terms of Ayurveda, it can lead Vatta types to become more Vatta!
For most people in the West, raw food may go only as far as a salad. In Bali, the abundance of fresh fruit, vegetables and other food stuffs mean raw eating is diverse and delicious, and has a number of health benefits as well. And raw eating does not necessarily mean just fruit and vegetables! It is actually defined as not heating food over 46ºC, which means that food can be prepared using a dehydrator or low temperature oven. This means even warm foods are possible!
So why not try it?
Once you have determined your Ayurvedic constitution, i.e. balance of pitta, vata and kapha energies, it is important to understand how you can keep the energies in as equal balance as possible. This can be approached through every day life – considering your outlook, exercise regime and, of course, diet. To pacify the dominant energy type, activities and foods that are opposite to the dosha are most effective. “Feeding” your energy type with similar energies will only exacerbate your imbalance.
Someone with a Vata imbalance will prefer cooler, fresh foods, but to pacify vata energy it is best to eat sweet, sour and salty foods. These tastes do the opposite to the bitter or pungent flavours that a Vata type may generally prefer. Sweet flavours, such as wheat, with sour and salty tastes will help to create warmth in the vata body and also moist foods will provide a lacking density to the Vata type.
A Pitta individual may enjoy spicy food, sunbathing for hours, drinking caffeine and alcohol – but these “hot” activities aggravate the Pitta energy. It would be better for Pitta types to tend towards sweet and bitter flavours, turning to a diet of cool, fresh, simpler foods.
In terms of diet, the Kapha energy is almost opposite to that of Vata. The sweet, sour and salty tastes that create warmth and density for a Vata type are exactly what a Kapha individual should avoid. They should tend towards pungent or bitter flavours, such as chilli pepper, green vegetables and herbs. Maintaining a predominantly fresh, clean diet will help reduce the dense, grounded feeling of Kapha energy.
Through maintaining more balance in the diet, all three doshas can work simultaneously – reducing the number of ailments felt, improving digestion and circulation and increasing the general sense of well-being. Because each person has their own individual Ayurveda constitution (Prakriti) no one diet will suit all, and it is important to realize your own doshas in order to adjust your diet and lifestyle accordingly.
As a yogi, practicing saucha (purity of the body and mind) one must try a variety of cleansing procedures, both mental and physical, targeting specific results with a goal in mind. Recently, during a RYT 200 hour course at Shades of Yoga we decided to try an Epsom Salt liver/gallbaldder flush to rid the body of gallbladder stones and flush the digestive system.
Be sure to purchase epsom salt produced with the purpose of being ingested, not bathing. Below are the details:Read More»
The point of detoxification is to to stop toxins before they harm the body. Toxins enter the body in a variety of ways from breathing, consumption of water and food and skin contact with various entities. Toxins are responsible for compromising the body’s health - causing illness, premature aging, cell destruction, allergies and more. ‘Detoxing’ is crucial to maintaining a healthy body and cellular balance. Activated charcoal can and should be incorporated into all natural body cleanse and detox programs, as it is considered one the purest, most effective ways of eliminating toxins from the body.
How it is consumed and worked into the body:
Medicinal charcoal is consumed orally: a spoonful of the black powder substance is mixed with clean water, drank and followed with more clean water. As the charcoal flows through the body naturally, harmful toxins that are too large to pass through the body bind to the charcoal creating a complex cell which is slowly absorbed into your digestive system or the blood vessels that surround the digestive tract.Read More»
We hear it all the time “eat your greens” and most of us have no doubt in our minds that this has its benefits. Here are a few good reasons to integrate green foods, particularly leafy green vegetables into your diet.
Greens are alkalizing.
The modern diet tends to lean more toward acid forming foods like meat and carbohydrates. In order to maintain health and balance it’s important to keep your PH at a healthy level and vegetables, particularly greens help to do this.
Greens are mineral rich
Greens are mineral rich and supply the body with many vital nutrients such as calcium, magnesium, potassium, Vitamins, including vitamin C, K, E and B vitamins.Read More»