By Nmami Agarwal
Yoga is an ancient practice to maintain your spiritual, mental and physical health, symbolizing the embodiment of body and consciousness. And now, this soul calming art is being practiced across the world with a universal appeal. International Yoga Day was declared on the 21st June by the UNGA (United Nations General Assembly) and it aims to raise awareness around the benefits of practicing yoga. This approach towards overall well-being can make a direct contribution to humankind’s quest to achieve and move towards lifestyles that are in harmony with nature.
Nothing can replace the joy of living a life with spirituality and contentment. To go along the Yoga life, you can also add certain foods to your diet that complement your fitness ritual. Yoga or yogic diet is considered as the purest diet of all which nourishes the body and maintains a peaceful state which in turn, purifies and calms the mind enabling it to function at its utmost potential. Here the diet follows which will help you to feel connected more to yoga:
- Vegetarian Protein: Non-meat sources of protein like lentils, chickpeas, green pea, hemp seeds, soy milk, oats, and quinoa help decrease the risks of Type 2 diabetes, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, diverticular disease and certain types of cancer, including ovarian, breast cancers and colorectal. Consuming all your protein from non-meat sources is inclined to lower the body weight and have a lower risk of obesity.
- Green leafy vegetables: Green leafy vegetables such as kale, spinach and chard are rich in vitamin A which keeps your eyes healthy, complex B vitamins for the maintenance of optimal energy levels, Vitamin E to keep skin healthy and radiant, Vitamin K which keeps your coagulation healthy and of course, iron that helps in carrying oxygen through your body. They are also packed with antioxidants that help lower the risk of infection and various heart issues.
- Fresh fruits: It’s always advised to eat raw and fresh fruits to get the most health benefits that help in preventing health various complications like high blood pressure, diabetes, cancer and heart disorders. Fruits like peaches, cranberry, plums, pineapples, avocados and much more. They also, effectively cure skin disorders and promote healthy lifestyle due to the rich proportion of dietary fibers, vitamins, minerals, potassium and folic acids.
- Nuts: Health benefits of nuts are because of the rich content of vitamins, minerals, an array of organic compounds found in them. Specifically, benefits mainly come from the dietary fiber, antioxidants, plant sterols, vitamin E, monounsaturated fatty acids, flavonoids, linoleic acid, L-arginine and minerals like zinc, iron, magnesium, copper, calcium, and potassium. The impressive list of healthy nuts is in dozens: almonds, chestnuts, Brazil nuts, walnuts, pine nuts, cashew, pistachios and peanuts of course.
- Whole grains: Whole grains are extensively packed with abundant nutrients that include protein, antioxidants, fiber, vitamins B, and trace minerals (zinc, iron, magnesium, and copper). Diet rich in whole grains such as oatmeal, barley, brown rice, millet has positively shown to reduce the risk of type 2 diabetes, heart disease, and obesity.
Over to you
Consider adding these recommended foods to your yoga diet and notice the positive changes in your lifestyle. Eat foods which are lightly cooked or are raw; choose foods that are easily digestible. You must also pick stable cooking oils such as coconut oil or clarified butter (ghee). Stop eating when you feel satisfied, but not stuffed and last but not least be a little more conscious of the ingredients you decide to put onto your plate.