INDIA New England Columnist
Yes you read it right, we are talking about the new PMS-Physical, Mental and Spiritual and this one applies to both sexes and to all age groups.
Although they appear as different entities and seem like there can be no relation between them, I have now come to a deeper understanding that they are all intertwined.
When I started my adventure into the field of nutrition, I always thought that food had one function and that was to provide nourishment to our body and also to alleviate disease condition. However, gradually as I started working more in this field, I came to an understanding that food had a deeper connection. Being a person with science background, anything that had scientific reasoning made sense to me. I got curious to learn how food was related to not only our body but our mind and spirit. The more I discovered, the fascinating it became. I learnt about how eating the right kind of food during pregnancy, for e.g., not only provided adequate nourishment but also how it affected the emotional and spiritual being of the unborn child.
When Ramana Maharashi, one of the most famous self-realized sages of modern India, was asked what the most important aid to meditation was, he replied a pure vegetarian diet. Yoga tradition, as emphasized by the Chandogya Upanishad, teaches “the mind is made of food”. It says that food we intake is divided into 3 parts: the gross part becomes excrement, the middle portion becomes the flesh and the subtle essence becomes the mind. In Ayurveda it is established that certain foods affect the qualities of the mind in particular ways. It is divided in 3 gunas- sattvic, rajasic and tamasic.
The Sattvic state of mind is clear, peaceful and harmonious, typified by spiritual aspirants. The rajasic state is active, restless, worldly and aggressive- the mental state of warriors or in today’s world corporate executives. The tamasic state is lethargic, impulsive, cruel and morally and physically degenerate, eg of such – are self-destructive people or those who indulge into self-destructive activities.
Now let’s skip the sattvic and rajasic diet and jump straight to tamasic diet. Let’s look into what foods fall into this category. Foods that are stale, decayed, decomposed, overcooked, recooked leftovers, genetically modified organics (GMO’s), microwaved, processed with chemicals used as preservatives, food with high levels of pesticides, fungicides, food made with artificial sweeteners and artificial everything, most alcohol especially those that is fermented, all flesh food that are not freshly slaughtered…I think you get the idea. It’s basically the food that we all consume in today’s “go getter” busy lives, isn’t it? And then one wonders what is it that we are doing wrong?
I am not saying that just coz we consume tamasic diet, there is so much violence and disease around us, but again I am not saying that it can’t be a contributing factor.
It is utmost important to take charge of oneself first (by adopting appropriate lifestyle changes) and indirectly contribute to the betterment of the society. A miserable person can’t spread happiness. Personally, besides eating right 80% of the time, I have turned to yoga, pilates and meditation to clear a path for the good in my life and clear out the negative energies and clutter. Does this mean that I am always 100% positive and stress-free, surely not, but it does give me something to work with and not allow the daily frustrations to get the better of me.
Having said and heard that the next natural question is “How do we go about this?” With the intention to establish and maintain harmony between the physical, mental and spiritual bodies, NutriAge will be conducting a PMS detox workshop in September. We will not only be talking about what food one should eat per one’s body type and their lifestyle, we will also be learning strategies on how to relax the mind by learning some simple yet effective breathing & meditation practices. Lastly we will explore various exercise options that you can pick and choose from to see what works best for you. From FITT to yoga we will discuss them it all. More details on this workshop to follow. If this is something that interests you, stay connected via the NutriAge FB page www.facebook.com/nutriage
Love and Light!