The Yoga diet advocates eating a variety of wholesome and nutritious foods that are tailored to your individual needs.
By adjusting your diet, you can dramatically change your health, well-being and how you feel.
The Yoga approach to diet is influenced by Ayurveda, which is the traditional Indian system of medicine. According to this system, there are three gunas that exist together in balance; rajas (energy, the process of change), tamas (darkness) and sattva (purity).
These gunas are present everywhere around us. In the air, the earth, animals, plants, people, food and inanimate objects. Once energy takes form, one quality of the three outweighs the other. An example would be fruit. Some fruit is ripe (sattvic), some in the process of ripening (rajasic), and some are overripe (tamasic).
No matter which quality dominates, an element or two will always be present, even if the naked eye cannot see it.
The three Gunas surround all existence and all action. In all people one of the three Gunas over powers the others and is reflected in what they do and think. Only when you reach pure enlightenment, all the Gunas would be eternal.
Rajas is hot, energetic, forceful and active. The types of food consumed are stimulants. Some examples are: coffee, tea, strong herbs, eggs, fish, chocolate and salty foods. Eating too quickly is also rajasic.
These foods feed the body at the expense of the mind. Consuming too much of these rajasic foods will overstimulate the body and excite your passions. The mind becomes restless and uncontrollable.
Tamas is slow, cool and sustained. The types of food consumed are: onions, garlic, meat, alcohol, tobacco and fermented foods, such as: vinegar. Also stale or overripe substances. Overeating is also Tamas.
A tamasic diet has no benefit for the mind nor the body. Prana, or energy, is withdrawn. The ability of rationale becomes uncertain causing a sense of inertia.
Some examples include drowsiness, laziness, and the immobility to be productive.
It effects the body, by destroying resistance to disease, making you more prone to illness. The mind is also clouded and filled with negative emotions, such as anger, greed and jealousy.
Sattva is wholesome and the purest of the three Gunas. It balances the body and mind, and is most appropriate for those practising yoga.
It nourishes the body with vital nutrients and maintains the mind in a peaceful and calming state. This enables you to function at the maximum potential.
Therefore a sattvic diet leads to true health: a peaceful mind in control of a fit body, with a balanced flow of energy between them.
The types of foods include cereals, wholemeal bread, fresh fruit and vegetables, pure fruit juices, milk, butter and cheese, legumes, nuts, seeds, sprouted seeds, honey, and herbal teas.