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16 healthy Ayurvedic mantras

By Dr Mandakini Vasaikar
Last updated on: July 19, 2005 20:09 IST
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Having a bout of indigestion?

Feeling uncomfortable after a spicy meal?

image Get Ahead brings you 16 practical Ayurvedic mantras to incorporate into your daily diet.

1. Instead of using plain water in beverages, use water in which cumin seeds have been soaked overnight. Cumin seeds have a cooling effect on the body and are an effective digestive.

2. Add flavour to juices by making ice cubes out of fruit juices, lemon juice and rose water. 

Lemon juice is an excellent source of Vitamin C while both lemon juice and rose water have a cleansing and cooling effect on the body. They blend with any fruit juice without causing any side effects, even as they enhance the flavour of the drink.

3. When making juices, use castor/ powdered sugar (colloquially known as pitti/ khada shakkar) instead of cubes or grains. Pitti/ khada shakkar is good for health as it is not processed as much as ordinary sugar.

If you do not have powdered sugar, grind 250 grams of sugar in a mixer and keep handy. Use approximately one spoon of powdered sugar (seven to eight grams) per glass of any juice. It takes less time to dissolve.

4. Excessive sugar consumption can contribute to dehydration, so switch to natural sweetners such as honey, raw sugar or jaggery.

5. Use glucose powder to add energy to your drink.

6. Substitute cow's milk with soya milk. Soya milk is high in protein and adds nutritional value to your diet. Here's how to make it.

  • Soak soya beans overnight in water.
  • Drain the water next day.
  • Blend the soaked beans with three cups of very hot water for three minutes.
  • Cool till warm to the touch and filter through a muslin cloth by squeezing.
  • Simmer soya milk on a stove for 20 minutes.
  • Stir and allow to cool.
  • Use it to whip up some yummy milk shakes.

7. Substitute table salt with saindhave mamak (rock salt).

8. Substitute chocolate-flavoured health drink powders like Bournvita, Complan and Horlicks with plain cocoa powder to add more nutrition value to the drink.

9. For garnishing juices, use chopped fresh fruit and dry fruits.

10. Want extra spice in your food? Use generous amounts of ground dry ginger blended with powdered sugar, chaat masala and cinnamon powder.

11. Never mix more than three types of fruits while making a juice; the combination of different fruit enzymes could cause acidity and digestion problems.

image 12. Citrus fruits (orange, sweet lime, grapefruit) can be consumed in combinations (say orange and sweet lime, sweet lime and grapefruit).

However, citrus fruits should not be combined with any other type of fruits as their enzymes can chemically react with other types of fruit enzymes, causing allergies in extreme cases.

13. Never combine citrus fruits and milk as it leads to an undesirable curdling of milk and renders the combination futile

14. Vegetable juices (cabbage, carrot, beetroot) should preferably be diluted in the proportion of 7: 3 (vegetable juice: water).

15. Never have strong concentrated juices (unless recommended) early in the morning on an empty stomach.

Dilute the juice with water and then consume it.

16. Try to drink freshly prepared fruit juices only. Juices that have been stored without preservatives for a long time undergo oxidation and lose a considerable amount of their nutritional value.

Dr Mandakini Vasaikar is a doctor and Ayurvedic practitioner.

Next: Ayurvedic recipes

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Dr Mandakini Vasaikar