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Ayurveda: Incompatible Food Combinations… Sometimes

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During my yoga teacher training, I was introduced to Ayurveda, a holistic approach to treat the spirit, mind, and body.  The teacher presented loads of interesting information at an introductory level that left me with the desire to learn more. So, I went to the library and got every book on Ayurveda that looked interesting to me. (References listed at the bottom of this blog.)  After looking through the books, one topic that piqued my interest was the lists of “incompatible food combinations.”  The books pointed out that if you have poor digestion/digestive symptoms, one area you can look to improve on is the way you combine your foods.  It suggests that the complexity of the food can determine how you digest your food (proteins take longer to digest and sugars take a shorter time to digest, in general).  So, eating a protein with a sugar would prolong the time that the sugar is staying in the gut (like an apple fermenting in the gut), which could lead to digestive issues.  (Notice how I’m not wording it in a way that is saying this is Ayurvedic dogma and should be followed to the nines lest you wish to die a digestive death… lol.  I think one of the healthiest things you could practice is moderation… including moderation.)

The reason this topic stuck out to me was because I’ve had my fair share of digestive issues.  If it wasn’t IBS-like symptoms, it was bloating, or constipation, or you name it, I have probably dealt with it… and this has been happening since middle school.  (Right now I’m dealing with bloating.)  Having these digestive issues made me want to find a way to alleviate them… and looking towards my diet was a natural route to go.  (FYI: I am also taking a look at my physical and mental fitness [yoga] to help alleviate these issues… you probably know by now [based off my other blog posts], that I think the mind is a powerful thing.)

Before I give you the list, there are some situations in which digesting “incompatible food combinations” is NOT difficult.  They are:

  • The eater is habituated to the combination.
  • The incompatibility is slight.
  • The eater has a strong digestive fire (strong digestion).
  • The eater is young.
  • The eater is strong from exercise.
  • Cooking incompatible combos together (casserole, stew, soup) neutralizes the the incompatibility, sometimes making the product more digestible.

Here’s the list!  Remember, I always like to remind myself that moderation is key, including moderation itself.  It’s no fun to be controlled by rules.  Life is just not that serious.

Combinations that don’t help to strengthen digestion:

  • Mixing raw and cooked food, unless the amount of one is small.
  • Mixing fresh food and leftovers.
  • Mixing fish and milk (raw or cooked).
  • Eating fruit with other foods.
  • Eating yogurt with other foods.
  • Eating eggs with other foods.
  • Mixing milk and yogurt with sour or citrus fruits, fish, meat, eggs, nightshades (potatoes, tomatoes, or eggplant), or starches.
  • Mixing different types of protein (eggs & cheese).
  • Garlic and milk.
  • Eggs should never be eaten with cheese or with potatoes.
  • Melon should always be eaten alone.
  • Honey should never be cooked.

Most of these combinations are saying that quickly digested foods should not be combined with slowly digested foods.  Some of them are saying that combining two slowly digested foods makes for a very slowly digested meal, which could increase the probability of digestive dis-ease.

You know, I know I’ve been mentioning that moderation is key, but you know what else is key?  Listening to your own body is key.  I think that may be the most important lesson from this whole blog post.  Pay attention to YOUR body when you’re eating.  Notice how you feel after you’ve eaten something.  Alive?  Sleepy?  Adjust in the direction that you are most happy.  That’s the whole point, right?  A quote might help cement this idea in your head.  I was just watching (the best movie evar) Bridesmaids, yesterday and heard the most beautiful quote from Melissa McCarthy’s character, Megan:

“You can stop feeling sorry for yourself, okay? Cause I do not associate with people that blame the world for their problems. Cause you’re your problem, Annie. And you’re also your solution. Right? I mean that’s…you get that?”

I get that.  I friggin’ get THAT.

 

References:

Svoboda, Robert. Ayurveda. Albuquerque, N.M.: Ayurvedic Press, 2004. Print.

Morrison, Judith H. The Book Of Ayurveda. New York: Simon & Schuster, 1995. Print.

McIntyre, Anne. The Ayurveda Bible. Richmond Hill, Ont.: Firefly Books, 2012. Print.

Warrier, Gopi, and Deepika Gunawant. The Complete Illustrated Guide To Ayurveda. Shaftesbury, Dorset: Element, 1997. Print.

Ninivaggi, Frank John. Ayurveda. Lanham, MD: Rowman & Littlefield, 2010. Print.

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Eliminate Left Turns, Now

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I would like to recommend that all cities find a way to eliminate any need to make left turns for the following reasons:

1. When I am stuck behind someone who is making a left turn, I feel slightly ruffled that I am being hindered by another driver who is not going where I am going.  I would like to feel less that way.

2. When I am the person making a left turn and I can see a queue of cars building up behind me, I find that it is hard to keep my mind from making an internal scene of what other people are saying about me (all quite degrading and disrespectful! Rude.).  I also realize that this is fictional and is a reflection of my poor self confidence in not only making left turns, but also of my view of myself in life.  Please be reassured that I am working on uplifting myself more than on pushing myself down.

3.  I really don’t like making left turns.  The waiting.  Too long.  I could have walked to the place that I wanted to get to faster than making that left turn.

As you can see, I make compelling reasons to eradicate left turns.  You may have experienced some of these emotions and feelings firsthand, assuming you are human.  I would think robots are apathetic.

So, I have decided to put a small amount of thought/work into improving the lives of millions of people across the globe, and would like to present to you my proposition for a city without left turns… in picture form, first, because a blog isn’t fun without pictures.

First off, I would like to present to you a town with a road system easily clogged up by two drivers… let alone a growing city with nearly a million people (*cough*, Austin, Texas).  My sweet theoretical town, lovingly named: Fifty Shades of Green (I make myself laugh SO hard.)

FiftyShadesofGreen

Look at those roads!  So many left turns!  Refer to numbers 1, 2, & 3 as to why this is NOT good.

Here is what I’m thinking could save my sanity us.  Behold:

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You may be thinking: What the hell?  Or something along those lines, anyways.  Let me explain.  The genius engineering program is that we build every city with either skyscrapers or really tall buildings in the middle.  All the housing would be built outward making every city or town a circle.  Then we build a road that resembles a slinky that a child has stretched out, rendering the slinky useless (sad, I know).  This is a one way street.  In the morning everyone would commute into town to work at these fancy workplaces.  Because it is the future, all the vehicles are collapsible and fit neatly into the person’s briefcase or purse!  At the end of the workday (3pm), people pull out their vehicles and excitedly go down this roller coaster-esque road system.  Work weeks are also only on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays from 10am to 3pm.  The rest of the time people would either sunbathe, cook at home, or frolic in the pond to the right.  I seriously hope that this utopia is at least considered in the next city planning session.  If you feel that I should take this to the next town hall meeting, then let’s find supporters and light up the torches!

*Technically this would make the commute home an enormous circular left turn.  I only realized that after I drew the picture.  So much for big dreams.  At least it would be enormously fun to drive home!

laur7179 - May 14, 2015 - 9:33 am

I’ll do it for the children, Beth. And all the other people too. *hugs*

Beth - May 14, 2015 - 8:26 am

A gazillion years ago (30+), my neighbor was killed making a left-hand turn. (When people run red lights, they’re not thinking about vehicular homicide, I suppose.) He was the first person I’d known who had died and it made an impression on me. To this day, I preach to my kids in the car, “When the light turns green, wait 2 seconds and make sure there’s no one trying to kill you. Then you can go.” Love your utopia! Right-hand turns for president!

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