If you are seeking a natural and holistic approach to weight loss, Ayurveda may be worth considering.
Deriving from ancient Indian medicine, the term Ayurveda translates to “the science of life” and emphasises balance and harmony between the mind, body, and spirit.
Ayurveda advocates nourishing the body with whole, natural foods and incorporating lifestyle habits that focus on overall health and well-being.
An Ayurvedic diet for weight loss can help you reach your weight loss goals sustainably and holistically. It focuses on providing your body with the necessary nutrients to operate optimally, improving digestion and metabolism, and developing healthy habits that promote weight loss.
Although no scientific research backs the effects of an Ayurvedic diet on weight loss, one can try taking references from the Ayurvedic diet to reap some weight loss benefits.
Ayurveda for Weight Loss – An Overview
Eating according to your dominant constitutional type or dosha is essential when following an Ayurvedic diet. Ayurveda, an ancient Indian health system, is based on the idea that the universe is composed of five elements: space, air, fire, water, and earth.
These elements, in turn, create three main doshas: Vata, pitta, and Kapha. Vata comprises space and air, pitta of fire and water, and Kapha of water and earth.
Excess weight gain is usually the result of an imbalance in the Kapha dosha. To reduce Kapha in our bodies through our eating and lifestyle choices, one must eliminate any extra body fat.
A human body needs Kapha for immunity, strength, stability, and defence, but having too much Kapha can quickly lead to weight gain.
Advantages of an Ayurvedic Diet for Weight Loss
Promotes Whole Food Consumption
The Ayurvedic diet encourages the intake of whole foods such as fruits, vegetables, cereals, and legumes, with specific recommendations for each dosha.
These foods have a wealth of essential nutrients which can significantly improve your health. Furthermore, processed foods, which often lack the necessary fibre, vitamins, and minerals, are not included in the diet.
Studies have shown that eating more processed foods can put you at risk for developing heart disease, cancer, and even an eventual diet. Therefore, following the Ayurvedic diet can help protect you from chronic illnesses and support your overall health.
Encourages Mindful Eating
According to the principles of Ayurveda, mindful eating is essential to be in tune with one’s hunger and fullness cues, which can contribute to making better decisions when it comes to eating.
Additionally, Ayurveda recommends that individuals only eat until they are approximately 80% full, which can be a helpful tool in achieving weight loss.
Practising mindfulness involves being keenly aware of one’s mental state. Further, research has indicated that mindful eating can bolster self-discipline and develop a healthy attitude toward food.
Incorporates Healthy Fats
For thousands of years, Ayurveda has focused on using fats as a medium to carry herbs and spices, making them a healthy part of a balanced diet. It is known as Anupaan.
The Ayurvedic principles involve using Ghee, sesame oil, coconut milk, and cow’s milk because they can bring the herbs and remedies deeper into specific body tissues.
Taila (medicated oil) and Ghrita (medicated ghee) are two common types of these fatty formulations. Ayurveda experts claim that Anupaan helps improve the body’s anabolism, strength, vitality, and complexion.
The use of healthy fats for weight loss is no secret. Several studies showcase the importance of consuming healthy fats in a weight-loss diet.
Research has shown that the Ayurvedic lifestyle emphasises reducing stress and creating balance in the body, aiding weight loss efforts. That is because stress often leads to excessive eating or consuming unhealthy foods.
According to Ayurveda, Vata, Pitta, and Kapha, the three doshas control our bodies’ stress. These doshas significantly determine the balance of positive and negative stress in the body.
Ayurveda states that many individuals possess a combination of two doshas in their physical structure, like Vata-Pitta, Pitta-Kapha, and Vata-Kapha. These doshas can potentially affect one’s overall mental well-being.
Eating Principles According to Ayurveda
Eat According to Your Body Type (Dosha)
Ayurveda states that the three doshas are associated with specific physical and emotional characteristics. Certain foods and dietary habits naturally support each dosha. Eating mindfully is essential for maintaining balance.
Ayurveda emphasises the importance of eating fresh meals that are easy to digest. It discourages the consumption of processed or packaged foods as these tend to have low nutrient content and can be challenging for the digestive system to process. Furthermore, ensuring that an individual gets the right amount of nutrients through food is essential.
Eat in a Peaceful, Relaxed Environment
According to Ayurveda, eating in a calm and peaceful environment is imperative, as stress and haste can lead to indigestion and other digestive issues.
Eat at Regular Intervals
According to Ayurveda, one must eat regularly throughout the day to optimise digestion and maintain consistent energy levels. However, it ensures that one consumes food only after their previous meal has been properly digested.
Eat According to the Seasons
Ayurveda recommends consuming in-season foods since they are more nourishing and easier to digest. Doing so can help maintain the balance of doshas and improve overall health and well-being.
Tips for following a Healthy Ayurvedic Diet
Consume Specific Meals in a Day
Ayurveda recommends eating food that is simple to digest using our gastric enzymes to maintain a healthy metabolism.
An ayurvedic weight reduction treatment suggests eating healthy, easily digestible meals every day without any in-between-meal snacks. It means one must only eat breakfast, lunch, evening snacks and dinner.
This ayurvedic food plan helps to promote digestion and keeps the metabolism in good condition.
Eat a Kapha-pacifying Diet
The Ayurvedic weight-loss plan incorporates a Kapha-Pacifying diet to reduce an excess of Kapha in the body while transforming it for the better. This diet involves consuming coarse, heated, dry, and easily digested meals.
Follow Healthy Sleeping Patterns
Ayurveda emphasises healthy sleeping patterns for effective weight loss. A healthy sleeping pattern is essential for one’s health and overall weight. Studies have shown that individuals with insomnia tend to have higher body fat than those with a regular sleep schedule. Therefore, it is vital to maintain an appropriate sleep schedule to reduce the risk of health and weight-related problems.
Sip on Tea or Hot Water
Ayurveda recommends taking a few sips of hot water upon waking in the morning to help dissolve toxins that have built up in the body due to poor diet, air pollution, and other external sources. These toxins, being sticky, are more easily broken down when you consume hot water.
According to Ayurveda, planning your hectic schedule to include time for physical exercise is crucial. Those who work out regularly tend to have better metabolism and are more successful at burning excess body fat.
You can do activities such as running, swimming, walking, or any other physical activity that involves your entire body. The best time to do these activities is early in the morning when the body is just starting to get back into gear.
The HealthifyMe Note
The Ayurvedic weight loss diet focuses on leading a healthy lifestyle. This ancient practice has been around for many years, yet modern-day science and research do not have enough evidence to support its effectiveness. Nevertheless, it can be made more effective by making some adjustments and incorporating research-based approaches.
A Reference Ayurvedic Diet for Weight Loss
Understanding your unique body type and constitution is essential to create an effective Ayurvedic diet plan for weight loss. It will help you determine which foods and herbs are best to incorporate into your diet. Whole, nourishing foods that are easy to digest should be a priority, as they will support a healthy metabolism. Additionally, it is vital to stay hydrated and make physical activity part of your routine. Finally, one must avoid processed and refined foods unsuitable for your constitution.
Below is a reference Ayurvedic diet plan that focuses on weight loss.
Start your day for breakfast by drinking hot water or ginger tea with honey or fresh lemon juice on an empty stomach, followed by apples, pears, or berries.
For lunch, divide your meal into three portions. First, consume plenty of vegetables with minimal or no starch, such as spinach, broccoli, etc. The next part is grains with energy-boosting capabilities, such as brown rice. Finally, a large amount of protein, like lentils.
As an evening snack, replace fatty snacks with pumpkin or sunflower seeds and dry fruits like almonds and raisins.
Dinner and Desserts
Have a vegetable soup made with turmeric, fenugreek, and pepper for dinner. You can balance dessert with spices, such as saffron or cinnamon, and a cup of low-fat milk.
The HealthifyMe Note
Following these guidelines can create a balanced, adequate diet plan that contributes to weight loss. One can achieve it by providing balanced nutrition, promoting portion control and metabolism, improving digestion, and reducing stress.
Losing Weight like a Pro
Before beginning an Ayurvedic diet for weight loss, it is a great idea to consult a nutritionist or healthcare professional. It will ensure that the diet is tailored to your individual needs and goals and provide guidance on portion sizes and food choices.
A HealthifyMe nutritionist can also help monitor your progress to ensure the diet works and help you understand the complex Ayurvedic recommendations. But, most importantly, they can provide support and encouragement to keep you motivated and on track to achieving your weight loss goals.
An Ayurvedic diet for weight loss is an excellent holistic approach for individuals looking to reach and maintain a healthy weight.
Whole, nutrient-rich foods are integral for this diet, as they help to boost metabolism, improve digestion, and reduce stress. However, one can alter the Ayurvedic diet to make it a holistic and research-based diet, effective for weight loss.
By adhering to the basic principles of an Ayurvedic diet and research-backed eating plans, individuals can effectively lose weight while simultaneously improving their overall health and well-being.
So, if you want to lose weight with a holistic approach, reach out to experts at HealthifyMe and start your weight-loss journey today.
The Research Sources
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3. Liu AG, Ford NA, Hu FB, Zelman KM, Mozaffarian D, Kris-Etherton PM. A healthy approach to dietary fats: understanding the science and taking action to reduce consumer confusion. Nutr J. 2017 Aug 30;16(1):53. doi: 10.1186/s12937-017-0271-4. PMID: 28854932; PMCID: PMC5577766.
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5. Cooper CB, Neufeld EV, Dolezal BA, Martin JL. Sleep deprivation and obesity in adults: a brief narrative review. BMJ Open Sport Exerc Med. 2018 Oct 4;4(1):e000392. doi: 10.1136/bmjsem-2018-000392. PMID: 30364557; PMCID: PMC6196958.
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