Centre for Integrative Medicine and Public Health

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Ayurvedic consultation always comes with some rules on food, and that is Pathya (Diet recommendations). Doctor-Do, we need to follow a vegetarian diet? Can we eat meat? No Sweets? What about eating at restaurants?…..and there is a series of questions that pour in.

People are concerned about their likings and varieties of food being cut out from their diet. So now let us know the reason why Pathya or diet has to be followed along with Ayurvedic treatment.

Ayurveda considers food as one of the Trayopasthamba (3 pillars of life), which is essential to living a healthy life. So food plays an essential role in curing or treating diseases. It is mentioned by our acharyas in Ayurveda that if the apt diet is followed along with medications, then the disease condition will be easily treatable.

So basically Pathya food is the food regimen that is beneficial for both mind and body. It maintains the normalcy of the body without causing any increase or decrease of the doshas (essential life elements)

Diet recommendation in Ayurveda depends on the age-sex Prakruthi(Constitution of the body)Mental status, place, and the climatic conditions of the persons’ residence. Bala (Strength of the person)Vikruthi(The disease factor)Agni(digestive capacity of the person), Kostha(Bowel evacuation habits of the person).

Food recommended is also seen for its quality (guna), Veerya (Potency), Vipaka (Taste formed after digestion), Prabhava (The action of food on body) Virrudhahara (The absurd combinations of food). Pathya recommended it should be such that it nourishes and provides strength and happiness, rejuvenates and increases the longevity of life.

Unwholesome diet or apathy may not cause any disease at first, but continuous usage will lead to disease. Thus its always beneficial for an individual to follow the recommended quality, quantity of wholesome food according to the prescribed Ayurvedic guidelines.

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