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Food Chart


In the 21st century, more people are dying of overnutrition than malnutrition.

The top illnesses in urban parts across the world that lead to mortality (death) or morbidity (prolonged period of suffering due to chronic illness) are cardiovascular, diabetes, obesity, respiratory disorders, and cancer. All of these are not due to under-eating or malnutrition but a result of overeating or faulty eating habits.

If you’re reading this book, consider yourself privileged to have not only access to the best of food but also the right knowledge-based on time-tested Ayurvedic principles that guide us about what to eat and what to avoid. This chapter helps you understand this.

Viruddha Ahara

Incompatible food combinations in Ayurveda

The same food that can prove to be nutrition, elixir, medicine can also be poison for you when consumed as an incompatible combination.

For example:

Honey consumed with turmeric powder is a great combination and a great home remedy during the flu. But the combination of honey and ghee is harmful and leads to lifestyle illnesses in the long run.

There are foods, which are beneficial and enhance health when consumed independently, but when consumed in the wrong combination, they are harmful to health rather than beneficial.

Harmful food combinations

1 Ghee + Honey

2 Milk + Curd

3 Milk + Fish

4 Milk + Onion

5 Milk + Honey

6 Milk + Jaggery

7 Milk + Fruits except for ripe mango

8 Dahi + Urad dal

9 Dahi + Dal and Lentils

10 Say NO to milkshakes

Consume dairy products like A2 desi cow’s milk, dahi, and ghee only in raw form but in small quantities without mixing it with other foods.

Foods you must include in your diet

Fruits

You can simply snack on seasonal fruits of any kind. It's a 10x better option than any other junk food you grab on the go. And for those who are suffering from any kind of period disorder, fruits are the best choice.

While all fruits are good for health and you must add them to your daily diet, some fruits have a high glycemic index, leading to the formation of Ama if consumed in excess quantities. So enjoy fruits like mangoes, lychees, passion fruit, and dry fruits such as dates, raisins, and cranberries in moderation.

Vegetables

Eat all kinds of vegetables that are available near you.

The secret to healthy living is to let 50% of your daily food intake come from different kinds of vegetables.

Eating vegetables every day is essential for maintaining good health. They are full of essential vitamins, minerals, and other nutrients such as antioxidants and fibre.

Include a lot of leafy vegetables in your diet. They contain a good amount of Vitamin B and calcium, which helps regulate sugar, reproductive hormones, fat metabolism, and Thyroid function.

Starchy vegetables contain more carbohydrates, calories, and resistant starch. Excessive intake of carbs can quickly raise blood sugar levels causing hormonal imbalance. You can enjoy starchy vegetables like potato, yam, peas, corn, taro, and squash in moderation.

Grains

Include a variety of whole grains and millets in your daily diet to get immense benefits.

Whole grains are packed with nutrients including protein, vitamin B, fibre, antioxidants, and trace minerals like iron, zinc, copper, and magnesium. The high fibre level helps in maintaining sugar levels, lowers cholesterol, and helps in weight management. Millets help in reducing the Kapha from your body.

Rice & Wheat are the most common staple diet across the world, including in India.

The highly processed white rice loses its nutritional value as the bran and germ get removed, and it only adds empty carbs to your body. You can eat other varieties like hand pounded or unpolished rice in moderation.

Since wheat increases the level of Kapha in your body, you can have it in moderation.

Legumes, Pulses, and Lentils

They are a very rich source of plant-based protein. They can be a great replacement for meat and even help in managing weight in PCOS.

Beans and legumes help in reducing cholesterol, decreasing blood sugar levels, and increasing healthy gut bacteria. Pulses additionally reduce your risk of developing cardiovascular diseases.

Ensure that you include a wide variety in your diet daily to get the best results.

Seeds

Seeds are a great source of plant-based, healthy fats, calcium, fibre and minerals. They contain healthy monounsaturated fats, polyunsaturated fats, and other important vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants. Add them to your daily diet because they will help you reduce blood sugar, cholesterol, and blood pressure.

1 You can include the following:

2 Flax seeds - They are a rich source of omega-three fatty acids and antioxidants. Flax seeds help in regulating hormonal imbalance and control side effects associated with PCOS.p>

3 Sesame seeds - They are rich in calcium, magnesium, and zinc. Sesame seeds also reduce testosterone levels.

4 Fenugreek (Methi) seeds - They maintain glucose tolerance in the body, which helps in weight loss.

5 Pumpkin seeds - They contain the enzyme which helps in controlling hair loss in PCOS.

6 Sunflower seeds - They help in balancing estrogen & progesterone and in managing premenstrual symptoms.

7 Chia seeds - They help in restoring your hormonal imbalance. They are a rich source of omega-three fatty acids.

8 Hemp seeds - They contain protein, omega three fatty acids, and are rich in fibre.

How to include seeds in your diet - You can grind them and have one spoon of it in the morning with warm water. Grinding the seeds helps in easy absorption of nutrients.

Nuts and Dry Fruits

Nuts are a great source of protein and iron. Dry Fruits are also a rich source of Calcium, Copper, Iron, Magnesium, Potassium, Phosphorus, Protein, Riboflavin, Vitamin A-C-E-K-B6, and Zinc.

You can include all kinds of nuts and dry fruits in your daily diet but ensure that you eat them in moderation. You can snack on a ‘fist full of any one type of nut’ at a time, and that’s the only thumb rule.

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