According to the yogic philosophy, there are three characteristics of food (Rajsic, Tamasic and Sattvic). For beginner yoga practitioners who are in search of spiritual connection through yoga, a yoga diet is one of the best ways to get familiar with yogic lifestyle.
Sometimes, yogic diet is confused with vegan food but it’s very different from popular dietary trend. In this blog, Ekattva shares 10 yoga foods that help beginner yoga practitioners develop strength, agility and spirituality.
But before we begin with yogic diet details, let’s discuss what Sattvic, Tamasic and Rajsic means.
When it comes to rajasic diet, the foods are majorly hot, bitter, dry, salty, or spicy. Meaning, they are known for overstimulating the mind and excite passions. Spicy and acidic food items are included in this food category.
In contrast to the above food type, tamasic diet is bland and include meat, alcohol, tobacco, garlic, onions, fermented foods, and overripe substances. It decreases your body stimulus and sometimes makes you dizzy.
Sattvic diet is a regimen that places emphasis on seasonal foods, fruits, dairy products, nuts, seeds, oils, ripe vegetables, legumes, whole grains, and non-meat based proteins. The purest form of food, known as yoga diet is the most suitable one for yoga students. It nourishes the body and helps in maintaining it to its most peaceful state. Following a sattvic diet plan is therefore recommended by dietitians and experienced yoga teachers.
Now you must have got an idea about yoga’s sattvic food. Let’s start with the best foods to consume when you are into yoga.
Milk contains calcium which is very important for bone health. Protein lying in it serves as the muscle repairing element. Potassium helps in regulating blood pressure and Vitamin B12 supports RBC building blocks.
Butter is rich in nutrients and beneficial compounds like butyrate and conjugated linoleic acid. Eating a measured amount of high-fat dairy products like butter can reduce the risk of obesity, diabetes, and heart problems.
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Cheese is a great source of calcium, fat and protein. Made from milk, this sattvic food is great for yoga diet as Omega 3 present in good quality milk helps boost your immune system and prepare you for yogic exertions.
Rich in magnesium, potassium and zinc, the wholegrains present in this sattvic yoga diet not only boosts your body with energy but can help reduce the risk of heart disease, stroke, certain types of cancer and type 2 diabetes.
Each one of us is familiar with the benefits fresh fruits. While eating citrus fruits like oranges and grapes will supply antioxidants, high energy fruits like banana will load your body with good potassium.
Leafy vegetables like spinach, cabbage, beans, gourd, and bitter gourd are loaded with iron, Vitamin A, K C, iron, potassium, and magnesium. This is why they are included in a good sattvic/yogic diet plan for beginners.
Legumes are practically free of saturated fats and cholesterol. Eating them will give you vitamins, iron, copper, magnesium, fiber, protein, carbohydrates, manganese, zinc, and phosphorous.
Most nuts contain Omega -3 and Omega- 6 polyunsaturated fat which is good for the brain. Therefore including walnuts, almonds, groundnuts, and cashews to your yoga diet will give you quick response abilities.
Seeds are extremely nutritious. Flaxseed, pumpkin seeds, chia seeds and other healthy seeds will help burn cholesterol and bad body fat. Eating them regularly in a controlled quantity will help you develop a healthy immune system.
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Why to include sprouts in your yoga diet regimen? Sprouting increases nutrient levels in the seeds, making sprouts richer in protein, folate, magnesium, phosphorus, manganese and vitamins C and K than non-sprouted plants.
Honey is the purest form of sugar. With no adulteration, honey contributes 0% to bad blood sugar and gives you a healthy glowing skin and eyesight. Therefore, adding it to your sattvic diet is a great idea.
Known for stimulating antioxidants and burning the bad fat in your body, herbal tea rejuvenates, making you prepared for continuous yoga sessions coming your way.
Cautionary note: Consult your dietitian for food allergies and a full diet plan
These were the major food items that contribute to a healthy sattvic diet and helps you perform yoga asanas like you are made to do it. Taking them in adequate and controlled quantity can help you attain the best state of body and mind, and this is what every yoga teacher dreams of.
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