Yoga Food Philosophy

Watch your metaphors if you catch yourself saying, “I can’t stomach that,” or “I’m fed up.”  Your digestive system maybe sending you a  not too subtle message.

Deborah Krouse-Shields, a certified laser reiki master and hatha yoga instructor, believes people with gastrointestinal complaints will find that yoga massages internal organs and eases constriction.

Sitting on the classroom floor with legs crossed and back straight.  Shield shuts her eyes and breathes in.  Her voice is low.  The room is dark.  A candle flickers and new age music plays softly in the background.

Verbiage like celestial navigation, pranayama, charka, and earth’s energy spews from her lips like water down a fall.

She explains to her students as they bend into their yoga postures that breathing or (pranayama as it is called in hatha yoga) is the point to achieve  state of stillness, perceive celestial energy attuned with other life source energy.

Shield’s quiet, affirming voice allows her words to penetrate as deep as the stretching, which releases accumulated metabolic toxins in the tissue.

“The journey is the goal, so take your time,” She trills, tapping her thyroid with her flattened hand while marching in place.

Yoga is no magic bullet, but our systems that have been stressed by bad eating and poor digestion can be cleansed.  This ancient healing art will allow you to transcend the limitations of everyday thoughts.  It will help strengthen your nerves, and invigorate your life with vital energy.

The landscape is dotted with fast-food franchises only too happy to sell high-fat, sugary foods to all comers.  And yoga philosophy believes that almost all disease derives from poor digestion.

So, what do we do?  Remember that the body needs food for two purposes: As fuel to supply energy and to repair body tissues.  If fuel in the form of food were not available, the body would consume itself.

The following four elements, proteins, carbohydrates, fat and minerals are found in larger proportions, in vegetables than in animal tissues.

Nuts, peas, beans, milk and cheese contain a  large  percentage of protein, whereas wheat, oats, rice, and other grains, potatoes, etc., are mainly carbohydrates (sugar and starches).

The main supply of organic minerals comes from fruits and vegetables.

Vegetables are the most important source of vitamin in a diet.  Those which can be eaten raw, such  as lettuce, spinach, cabbage, and tomatoes contain the three main types of vitamin:  A, B and C.  Vitamins A and B are not appreciably affected by boiling, but frying may destroy them.

Milk is a complete protein food.  Thus, a diet containing milk and dairy products, fresh fruits, leafy vegetables ad whole grains should be an ideal vitamin-rich diet.

The general rule of the Yoga students calls for a combination of nuts, cereals and plenty of fresh fruit and vegetables to get all of the important vitamins and minerals. Yoga experts believe a natural diet gives more disease resistance and prolong life.

Some common spices that aid digestion can be sprinkled on food.  Just a pinch of Coriander, Cardamom, Cumin, and Turmeric is very helpful.

Shields says that when holding static yoga postures, inhale deeply through your nose into your abdomen.  Then slowly exhale and envision that your entire being is cleansed of all negativity and no longer needs emotions.

Inhale again visualizing your being suffused with you, then exhale, emanating this joy to the universe around you.  This active focus on using the breath to release tension to heal yourself instills a peace of mind and emotional stability.  It will allow serenity to flow through you and it will deeply change the quality of your life, Shields says.

The five important Yogic rues for good health: proper exercise to stimulate circulation, proper breathing exercise, to absorb more oxygen, proper relaxation of the body and mind, natural wholesome food and proper thinking and concentration of the mind.

Yoga is not for sissies.  You do not have to be strong or even flexible to start. Almost anyone can do it.  It does take practice.  And none too soon in our stress-filled culture that upsets our stomachs.


I would enjoy hearing from readers who are addicted to eating and show no signs of breaking the habit.  Leave me a message if you have a recipe for breakfast, lunch or dinner that understands a life interrupted by kids, work and laundry!



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