Yoga Food Recipes

Practitioners of yoga know that yoga is much more than just a series of poses. Yoga is a way of life, often termed as an “alternative” way because it differs from the conventional Western approach to life.

Yoga is all inclusive, aiming to benefit all aspects of a human’s being including the body, mind and spirit.


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Value of Diet in Yoga Practice

Food plays an important role in a yogi’s life and is considered to be an energy source for not only the body but the mind and the spirit as well.

A sattvic diet that is part of a yogi’s way of life is said to be pure, simple and light and helps to keep the mind and the body clean. Sattvic diet recipes will include foods that do not strain the digestive system. They should not be chemically treated, have a low fat and protein content and should be relatively bland with just a minimum amounts of spices added for flavoring. Because of these requirements, the diet is completely vegetarian. Apart from these types of foods, a yogi will also be mindful of the amount of food eaten as well as the manner in which it is eaten as all these factors affect the various organs and the energy centers in the body. Yogis will also tend to shun noisy places, preferring instead the calm spaces more conducive to the meditative way of life.

A cookbook or a diet chart for a sattvic diet would consist of the foods from the following list:

  • Cereals
  • Vegetables
  • Milk and dairy products
  • Nuts and dried fruits
  • Honey
  • Eggs
  • Whole grains
  • Fruits
  • Seeds
  • Herbal teas
  • Clarified butter
  • Whole meal bread

Due to the high use of pesticides and other chemicals, organic foods should be used. Commercial milk and dairy products should be avoided if alternative sources of these products can be found.

Foods that should be excluded from the menu include all meats including fish and seafood, spicy foods, sweetened foods such as chocolates and cakes, sugar, frozen and canned foods, beverages such as tea, coffee, caffeinated beverages, alcohol including wine. In addition, the food should be chewed thoroughly and eaten slowly in calm surroundings.

Here are some ideas for a meal consisting of sattvic foods.

  • Start the day by drinking a mix of honey, lemon juice and warm water.
  • For breakfast, a fruit salad with a variety of fruits would be best.

    You may also have a bowl of cereal and fresh milk, rounded off with a glass of fresh fruit juice.
  • For a meal, you can have a big bowl of salad. The salad could consist of a mix of sprouts along with lettuce, a couple of chopped tomatoes, chopped raw carrots and some boiled beet. Garnish it with some fresh lemon juice or olive oil or mix it with fresh yogurt.
  • Alternative meal ideas could include a light salad followed by tomato soup and a baked vegetable dish.
  • For drinks, you can choose between plain water, green teas, fresh fruit juices, unsweetened lemon water and coconut water.
  • If you feel hungry between meals, eat some fresh fruit. Remember, keep your portions small and eat slowly.

Benefits of a Yogic Diet

Such a diet can benefit the practitioner in numerous different ways. It can be used as a diet for weight loss making it helpful in treating conditions such as obesity, diabetes, hypertension, cardiac disease, liver and kidney disease and digestive disorders. It is also beneficial to those who suffer from skin disorders such as acne, lung disorders such as asthma and joint disorders such as arthritis.

People who follow this type of diet as well as practice the various asanas are reputed to have a lower incidence of diseases as well as have clarity of thought and peace of mind.

You could also consult a professional yoga teacher or guru when planning your yoga diet.

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