It is said that one becomes what he/she eats. Food is one of the basis needs a man should have. After-all, food is sine qua non for life. One cannot survive long without food. That’s why, I think many politicians and social workers resort to fasting to win their causes. Recent fasting of Anna Hasare is very popular.
In Indian philosophy and mythology the intake of solid food has a unique meaning. it is said that one who eats four times is called a criminal because he is the cause of starvation in the world as he is eating up what is meant for others. Those who eat three times is called a sick man as three meals leads to obesity and other diseases. One who eats twice is again considered to be a hedonist or pleasure loving person. The ideal eating habit is consuming one meal a day. And such a person is called a yogi ( the monk).
Ayurveda speaks of healthy living by changing our food habits. It would result in health rejuvenation and Weight Control. Ayurveda believes in natural healing. In modern medicine the doctors agree to the principle: ‘we are what we eat”. Those who eat meat and flesh will have beastly tendencies. Ayurveda prescribes the appropriate diet as the foundation for all other therapies. The ancient wisdom provides us with a unique approach to life. Ayurveda focuses on holistic heath of the individual. It’s not only physical fitness but it also includes, one’s emotional, psychological, spiritual, mental, social, behavioural, well being of the individual.
There are many diseases in today’s world related to overeating. People are obese and many people go for weight control peals and therapies. According to Ayurveda, right attitude to food and life-style would be the lasting and only solution to this modern man’s physical crisis.
The Chinese methods of medicine and Indian methods of medicine which is Ayurveda will definitely be the most popular medical solution in the future. People now are aware of the ill effects and side-effects of English medicine.
Ayurveda put forward three body types: vatha, kapha and pitta. Ayurveda looks at life as a cosmic phenomenon. Life is not an isolated event. Everything is a cosmos. There is an order and not chaos in the world. The modern man’s alienation from nature is the cause of all sickness. Once one realizes his oneness with the universe, he is from all types of illness-physical, mental and spiritual. Such a holistic concept of health is the contribution of Ayurveda. Most of the problems in life arise when one thinks, acts and lives in isolation. A closely connected and well knit society diseases would remain as a dream.
Earlier I mentioned about three body types in Ayurveda viz: Vata, Kapha, Pitta. Each body types will have its own qualities and attributes. For example, The Sanskrit word vata means ‘wind’. A person with vata quality will be thin. He would be moving out always. He often complaints about cold hands and feet. He may have constipation, irregular bowel habits. He also may suffer from anxiety neurosis. He would be concerned about what is going to happen in future. To put it brief: the qualities of a person with vata will be:
dry, light,fast, changeable, subtle, rough, moving, jagged,cold and hard.
The second body type in Ayurveda is Pitta the meaning of this Sanskrit word is bile. It is a state of middle. It is oily but not the oiliest. It’s light but not the lightest. The people with such a body will exhibit more qualities of heat and sharpness. They are medium in everything. Remember The Aristotalian words, “Virtue Stands in the Middle”. They are medium in size, intelligence, and build. They have a good sense of humour. They may complain about heartburn and tend to be irritable. So the qualities of a person with Pitta will be:
moist, heavier, slower, more stable, less subtle, smoother, less movement, sharp, hot and softer.
The third type: Kapha, the meaning of this Sanskrit word is phelm and persons of this body type would exhibit the qualities like oily, heavy, stable, smooth, sticky, slow and cold. They are the heaviest, suffering from allergies and bronchitis. They are the calmer and peaceful people of all. They are obese. The qualities of a person with kapha body type would be as follows:
wet,heaviest, slowest, very stable, gross, smooth, stagnant, dull, cold, soft