Being obese is never a good thing. Obesity can lead to several health disorders, including cardiovascular (heart) diseases, diabetes, and osteoarthritis. However, losing weight without compromising on what you eat can be difficult.
People often go on one diet after another without getting the desired results. If you are also tired of going on a series of crash diets only to relapse and restart the vicious cycle of weight loss, it’s time to try a more holistic approach. Accepting Ayurveda and using it to lose weight can help greatly.
Ayurveda is a tried-and-tested health science that has been around for more than 5000 years. Developed in India, it aims to promote a healthy and balanced lifestyle.
Fortunately, the Ayurvedic doctrine provides a comprehensive guide to weight loss. It’s easy to follow and doesn’t have any side effects. However, you should consult an Ayurvedic physician or therapist for specific health concerns and better results.
This post offers five tips on losing weight in the Ayurvedic way.
1. Start Day with Lemon & Honey with Warm Water
The first thing you need to do after getting out of bed is to drink a glass of warm water with lemon juice and honey. It not only replenishes the water level in your severely dehydrated body but also helps in detoxifying the digestive system.
Drinking a glass of honey and lemon water on an empty stomach in the morning can also speed up weight loss. Lemon and honey contain powerful medicinal properties that boost your immunity and keep constipation at bay.
Lemon contains vital nutrients and antioxidants and acts as a potential cleansing agent. It is also known as a natural skin lightening agent. Relief from cough and cold, and boosting immunity are some of the health benefits of honey.
Lemon and honey water is an easy-to-prepare energy drink that is low on calories. Just add two tablespoons of freshly squeezed lemon juice and one tablespoon of honey to a glass of lukewarm water. Stir the mixture until the honey dissolves in the water, and drink it while it’s warm.
2. Establish Morning Yoga Routine
Most people make a decision to work out every morning that withers away with time. This is where yoga comes in. Yoga is the sister science of Ayurveda that focuses on integrating your body, mind, and soul.
It also helps reduce stress, which is one of the biggest causes of weight gain. It improves digestion, strengthens muscles and joints, and stimulates blood circulation, leading to overall fitness. Just 15-20 minutes of morning yoga can set the tone for a healthy day.
If you haven’t performed Yoga before, a simple routine of Surya Namaskara, also known as sun salutations, is the best way to start. It comprises a sequence of 12 yoga postures or asanas. For more information watch this 10-minute sun salutation routine by Kristin McGee.
3. Eat Three Square Meals Daily
The tenets of Ayurveda recommend eating three square meals a day, comprising a nourishing breakfast, hearty lunch, and a light dinner. Be sure to include all six tastes (Sweet, Sour, Salty, Bitter, Pungent, and Astringent) recognized in Ayurveda in your daily meals.
Offer your full presence to each meal and relish everything on your plate. Doing so will help you avoid cravings between meals. The breakfast should be a medium-sized meal taken within half an hour of the morning workout. You can eat a hearty breakfast if you feel hungry after the morning yoga.
However, if you aren’t feeling that hungry, just grab a fruit such as an apple or a grapefruit. You should take your lunch, the biggest meal of the day, between 11.00 a.m. to 2.00 p.m. According to Ayurveda, digestion is at its peak at midday so eat a hearty lunch.
As lunch is the most important meal of the day, plan it with care and try to include as many nutrients as possible in it. It should consist of warm and freshly-cooked food with a balanced use of spices. As the digestive fire is the weakest in the evening, your dinner should be as light as possible.
Have your dinner before 8.00 p.m. Avoid consuming processed food, leftovers, meat, and dairy products. Instead, eat non-creamy soups, and cooked grains such as brown rice, quinoa, buckwheat, and barley. You can also include steamed, roasted, or sautéed veggies in your evening meal.
4. Avoid Snacking between Meals
One of the key elements of losing weight using Ayurveda is to eliminate snacking. An average human requires 3-4 hours to digest one meal completely. The fat-burning process kicks in during the break between two meals.
If you keep snacking between meals, the entire process of digestion is interpreted leading to a horrid mess. That’s why people who keep snacking tend to complain about digestive problems such as constipation and bloating.
As mentioned in the previous point, timing your meals can reduce your cravings for a snack. However, if you feel a strong urge to eat between meals, eat a few dry fruits or celery sticks, or sip on honey-lemon water. Avoid snacking on salted and processed food.
5. Avoid Staying up Late
Kapha, Pitta, and Vata are the three states through which energy passed through the human body twice daily. Our digestive system is closely connected with these three stages.
According to Ayurvedic principles, the best time to go to bed is around or just before 10.00 p.m. Around 10 p.m., the Pitta time takes over from the Kapha time.
For the next four hours, your body will digest the remaining food in your stomach and make sense of the mental events of the day. If you continue to stay up late, you are more likely to disturb the biological clock of your body.
Establish a daily sleep routine. The average human body needs about seven hours of sleep every day. So, if you are going to bed around 10 p.m., your wake-up time should be set around 5.00 to 5.30 a.m. Start by adjusting your current sleeping time by about 15 minutes to establish a suitable sleep routine.
For most people, it can be difficult to lose weight just through diet and exercise. Fortunately, Ayurveda provides a more comprehensive and natural way to reduce weight. It uses age-old techniques that strengthen your digestive fire and detoxify your body. The best part is, these techniques are simple and can be performed daily. Hopefully, the above five tips will help you get better results.
Author Bio: Swati is a qualified dietitian at Practo. She has a Masters’s degree in Dietetics and Food Service Management. She is a strong believer in spreading the goodness of ‘nutrition through healthy eating.
As a responsible dietitian, Swati examines her patients’ health history carefully before recommending any diet or workout regimen, because everybody has different requirements.
Swati has also taken it upon herself to debunk myths in diet and fitness through practical advice in her articles. This helps her readers learn the essence of healthy eating and make the right choices in their daily diet.
Swati has been helping people live healthy and active for the past 4 years, by recommending diet plans that fit individual preferences and health parameters.