AMA-Reducing DietThe AMA-reducing diet includes fresh, organic vegetables; sweet, juicy fruits; whole grains such as quinoa, cous cous, rye, barley, amaranth, millet and rice; and easily digested proteins such as mung dhal or lentil soup. Lassi -- a drink made in the blender with one part freshly made yogurt, four parts water, and salt or honey for flavor -- is an excellent digestion -- booster to drink after a meal because it contains acidophilus, a friendly bacteria that aids digestion. Cooked leafy greens such as chard and kale are especially good for improving elimination and helping to detoxify the body.
The vegetables and grains should be cooked with tasty spices that are suitable for your body type and the season, such as Vata, Pitta or Kapha Churna from Maharishi Ayurveda.
Avoid all of the foods that we mentioned earlier as a cause of AMA -- fried foods, heavy foods such as aged cheese, meat, rich desserts -- anything that is difficult to digest should be left out of your diet. Avoid eating or drinking anything cold.
Drinking warm water throughout the day is a good way to flush out AMA and toxins of all kinds.
Ayurvedic Lifestyle Tips
- The most important thing is to eat your main meal at noon, when the sun is strongest and the digestive fire reflects that strength. If you eat too much at night, or eat heavy foods such as meat or cheese then, the food will sit in your stomach and create AMA Eat light at night and your food will be easily digested before you go to sleep.
- It's also important to eat all three meals at the same time every day. If your body gets used to a regular routine, the digestive juices will start to ready themselves before the meal, and will be more efficient in digesting. If you eat at all different times, your digestion will be thrown off.
- Don't snack between meals unless you are actually hungry, and wait until the food is digested before eating a meal. If your digestion is already occupied with digesting and you add new food on top of that, the result is AMA, the sour, undigested waste product of undigested food.
- Other aspects of the ayurvedic routine are also important. Going to sleep before 10 p.m. is essential, because then during the Pitta time of night (10-2) your digestion has a chance to cleanse and rejuvenate itself. If you stay up, you'll probably feel hungry about midnight and will want to eat, which will tax the digestion and create AMA.
- Waking up before 6 a.m. is recommended, as if you sleep late into the Kapha time of the morning (6-10 a.m.), the channels of your body will become clogged with AMA and you'll feel dull and tired.
- Daily exercise that is suitable for your body type will stimulate digestion and help cleanse the body of toxins. It's also important to manage your stress, and to have a job that your enjoy and is not too taxing for your body type. Everyone can benefit from spending time each day practicing the Transcendental Meditation program to remove mental, emotional and physical stress.
Spring is Ideal for CleansingMany people feel the signs of AMA buildup in spring more than at other times of year, because the toxins that are already in the body start to display their symptoms then. The reason is that if you don't follow the proper seasonal diet and routine during the first two months of winter (November and December), the body can accumulate more toxins then. The channels become clogged, and at the same time because of the cold temperatures, AMA gets stuck or "frozen" in the walls of the channels.
At this point there will not be as many symptoms of AMA But during the second two months of winter, January and February, there is a slight warming effect, because the sun is starting to gain in strength and is moving toward its zenith in June, even though it's still cold out. By the time spring comes and it really is warmer outside, the frozen AMA starts to melt, and as it flows into the body's channels, the channels become flooded with toxins.
Because these toxins are naturally melting in spring, it is the best time to detoxify. The body is already in the mode of eliminating toxins, so it is a good time to support the body in that role.
Disclaimer: This ayurvedic information is educational and is not intended to replace standard medical care or advice.