Ayurvedic Eating


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Ayurvedic Eating

Many people ask me about Ayurvedic eating. One of the questions I get a lot is: “How do you in an Ayurvedic way?” There are certain rules or credos that we follow in Ayurveda around eating. Health begins with digestion. When we properly digest our food, we keep ourselves healthy. Ama or toxins aren’t able to build up in the body when we have sama agni or balanced digestion. When we follow the path of Ayurvedic eating, we eat in a sattvic or peaceful and balanced way. Ayurveda is all about bringing balance into the body, mind and spirit.

Ayurvedic Eating Do’s & Don’ts


  • Eat dosha appropriate and dosha balancing foods

  • Eat with the seasons

  • Eat fresh, organic, sattvic foods

  • Eat locally grown foods

  • Use naturally processed oils that aren’t hydrogenated & avoid margarine

  • Use natural sugars like raw honey, pure maple syrup, jaggery (unrefined Indian palm sugar), sucanat, turbinado

  • Use rock or sea salt over commercial salt, iodized salt or salt substitutes

  • Only eat when you feel hungry

  • Only drink when you feel thirsty

  • Sit down to eat and focus on the act of eating

  • Eat in a peaceful environment without distractions like TV, reading, or upsetting conversations

  • Chew your food well and eat at a slow pace

  • Drink room temperature or warm water between bites of food

  • Avoid iced water or fruit juices when eating

  • Eat the amount of food per meal that would fit in both your cupped hands

  • Lunch/midday meal should be the largest meal of the day


  • Overeat

  • Eat too soon after a full meal

  • Drink too much water, or too little water during a meal

  • Drink very cold, iced water during a meal

  • Eat when constipated

  • Eat late at night

  • Eat excessively heavy, cold or light food

  • Eat when your not hunger

  • Eat when you are upset

  • Snack between meals

  • Eat frozen foods, store-bought canned foods or microwaved food

  • Eat GMO foods and foods with preservatives

  • Eat refined white sugar and store-bought brown sugars

  • Use aluminum or non-stick cookware

  • Drink sodas and carbonated beverages

  • Eat incompatible food combinations

  • Cook honey, (it is believed that when honey is cooked the molecules become like glue that adhere to mucous membranes and clog the subtle channels of the body which then produces toxins)


Incompatible Food Combinations

According to Ayurveda, many gastrointestinal problems stem from poor food combining. Combining improper foods leads to indigestion, gas, and upset stomachs. These food combinations disturb the normal functioning of the gastric fire or agni and upset the balance of the dosha. This can create ama, which is the toxic substance that is the root cause of most ailments, according to Ayurveda.

  • MILK | Bananas*, Fish, Melon, Yogurt, Sour Fruits, Kitchari, Bread made with yeast, Meat

  • YOGURT| Milk*, Sour Fruits, Melons, Hot Drinks, Fish, Mango, Starches, Cheese, Banana

  • MELONS | Everything, especially: Grains, Starches, Fried Foods, Cheese, Dairy, Eggs

  • EGGS | Milk*, Yogurt, Melons, Cheese, Fruits, especially Melons, Potatoes, Beans, Kitchari, Meat

  • STARCHES | Bananas*, Eggs, Milk, Dates

  • HONEY | Ghee in equal proportions (by weight)*, grains, Boiled or Cooked Honey

  • CORN | Dates, Raisins, Bananas

  • LEMONS | Yogurt, Milk, Cucumber, Tomato

  • NIGHTSHADES (Potato, Tomato, Eggplant) | Yogurt, Milk, Melon, Cucumber

  • BEANS | Fruit, Cheese, Eggs, Fish, Milk, Meat, Yogurt

  • FRUIT | As a rule, don’t eat with any other food (there are exceptions, such as certain cooked combinations as well as dates and milk)

  • GRAINS | Fruit, Tapioca

  • HOT DRINKS | Mangos, Cheese, Fish, Meat, Starch, Yogurt

  • TAPIOCA | Fruit, especially Banana and Mango, Beans, Raisins, Jaggery

*These foods are the most difficult combinations


Ayurvedic Meal-Time Prayer

This Ayurvedic meal-time prayer was shared by Vasant Lad in his book “Ayurvedic Cooking for Self-Healing.” Saying this prayer before eating can help put you in a pleasant state and help you to cultivate a mindfulness practice around eating.

Annam Brahma Raso Vishnu,
Pakto Devo Mahesarah
Evam Jnatva Tu Yo Bhunkte,
Anna Dosho Na Lipyate.

The creative energy in the food is Brahma,
The nourishing energy in the body if Vishnu,
The transformation of food into pure consciousness is Shiva.
If you know this, then any impurities in the food you eat will never become a part of you.

If you are interested in learning more about Ayurvedic eating, schedule an Ayurvedic Consultation with us.