Ayurveda is one of the oldest traditions of healing in the world. It is yoga’s sister science and has been continually practiced for over 5000 years. In Ayurveda, the key to good health is found by keeping in the flow of nature and by following her rhythms. According to Ayurveda, our health is our greatest wealth and one of the first steps in wellness is to be a good fire tender.
A balanced digestive fire, or Agni, is essential for our well-being. That is because Agni is our ability to digest food, emotions and information. It is the energy of digestion, transformation and metabolism. A strong fire is essential to balance our vitality, radiance and strength. You have heard the saying, “you are what you eat”, in Ayurveda the saying is “you are what you digest”.
It may seem like we can eat whatever we want, but if we don’t digest it properly, imbalances will occur. Eating processed foods, over eating, eating on the go and at irregular times of day strain our digestive fire. Weak Agni leads to Ama, a toxic, heavy residue of undigested food that is responsible for 75% of all disease. Ama can result in fatigue, weakened immunity, inflammation, cravings, lack of mental clarity, bloating, gas and depression (more on Ama and how to eliminate it in my next blog).
Tips To Boost Your Digestive Fire
- Begin your morning with a cup of warm lemon water. Sit in a quite space and ease into to your day.
- Eat your meals a regular times and shoot for having your biggest meal mid-day, when your fire is strongest.
- Eat only when you are hungry and avoid over eating or eating late in the day.
- Leave plenty of time between meals to allow your Agni to do its thing.
- Spice it up! Ginger, black pepper, fennel and cardamom are all good choices.
- Sip plenty of water between meals but say “no” to the ice.