Many of us are trying so hard each day to stop ourselves from reaching out for that favorite dessert to avoid weight gain.
And we know how difficult it can be. But if you are aspiring for better health, it is best to lose the excess fat permanently.
We have found the answer to complete weight loss in Ayurveda, which focuses on losing excess weight and shifting to a healthier lifestyle. Keeping the Ayurvedic tradition, in this article, we will be discussing daily and seasonal regimens to eat satisfying meals without engaging in emotional eating.
Read on to know all about Ayurvedic diet tips to lose weight with Ayurveda.
Top Eating Habits For Weight Management With Ayurveda
Many of you may believe that skipping meals will help you lose weight. This may not work well because when you reduce the calorie intake too much, the body starts storing the limited energy in the form of fat.
It is best to keep eating three times a day at the proper time. And avoid snacking in between meals, as that will help the body burn fat in the long run.
1. Ayurvedic Breakfast
Begin your day with a light breakfast that will keep you from feeling hungry until lunch. This meal is important, and it is hard to prevent hunger pangs till the next meal time. Otherwise, you might end up snacking in between, which is not good for weight loss.
Let yourself enjoy a meal of apples, prunes, figs, warm cooked oats(1) or cereals. You can also try stewing apples along with cardamom and cinnamon for a great meal. This will keep your taste buds happy and your tummy full.
2. Ayurvedic Lunch
According to the rules of Ayurveda, lunch is an important part of your diet. It follows the path of nature, and according to that, the sun is at its highest point at noon, which is also the hottest time. This means that your body’s digestive fire is at its highest.
So, make this an important part of your diet and ensure that you have basmati rice, vegetables, flatbread, whole grains, lean proteins, and a cup of ginger tea(2). Basmati rice is considered to be the lightest grain, which balances the food well.
3. Ayurvedic Dinner
As the sun sets, according to Ayurveda, the body’s metabolism slows down. Hence, the last meal of the day should be eaten no later than 7 pm. It is best to finish it before the sun sets, since having a heavy meal post-sunset can be detrimental to losing weight.
That is because the body will be unable to digest and process fat, and it can accumulate to prevent weight loss. Also, excess fat can increase toxin levels, which is detrimental to overall body development.
Moving on to the food that you eat, it is best to opt for non-creamy soups and stews, which work very well for dinner in the winter months. In summers you can replace soups with salads which are healthy and tasty.
Making A Lifestyle Change
According to Ayurvedic tradition, it is not just important to make a diet change for a few days or months. For a balanced lifestyle, you will need to make a change in the way you live and eat every day. Remember that the extra pounds that you lose while dieting can easily come back the moment you go back to old habits.
In fact, a lot of people have complained that they have gained a few extra pounds over the old weight after they stopped dieting. This happens because it is not possible for one to continue diets for too long. But according to Ayurvedic practitioners, shifting to three satisfying meals daily and opting for a light dinner is going to be of great help.
This does not mean you do not have your favorite foods or snacks at all. You should just be able to distinguish between special food made for occasions and food that is suitable for everyday eating. Once this is clear, you should not have any problems maintaining a healthy body.
Basics Of An Ayurveda Diet
To support weight loss, you will have to take care of a few things and make a few changes in your diet. They are:
1. Avoid Cold Food
If you ask an Ayurvedic practitioner, they will tell you to avoid cold food and instead opt for warm food. That is because warm food is usually digested easily, while cold food may take much more time to digest.
2. Reduce Your Dairy Intake
Milk and other dairy products are more difficult to digest, and your body may need time to break them down. So, we will suggest shifting to healthy nut milk alternatives that can be digested easily.
3. Stay Away From Processed Food
Prepackaged, processed, or microwaved food is laden with sodium and can be harmful to the body. Other than sodium, they have a few chemicals, which make sure that these food options last on the shelf for a longer time. Naturally, consuming these chemicals can be harmful.
4. Shift To Gluten-Free Food
Gluten or wheat is difficult to digest, and your body may take more time to do it. Also, a lot of it might get stored which increases the body mass index, leading to weight gain.
5. Keep Commercial Yogurt Away
While homemade yogurt is very good for health, we should tell you that commercial yogurt is not. Digesting commercial yogurt may be tough, and the lactobacilli present in the yogurt can be harmful.
6. Limit Protein Content
If you eat meat, then it is best to limit your portions and only consume lean meat. Fatty portions may again lead to weight gain, which is not needed.
Ayurvedic Herbs And Spices To Enjoy
There are certain spices and herbs, which can help in significant weight loss. These ingredients can be used in cooking your meals.
This is available in capsules, which can be taken before going to bed. You can take two to four capsules before retiring for the night but before that, you should know what Triphala includes. It is basically three fruits, Haritaki, Bibhataki, and Amalaki, which are a part of ayurvedic medicine and help in the natural detoxification processes.
You will be able to cleanse your digestive system to ensure better bowel movements.
Herbal tea can ensure a balanced lifestyle preventing excess weight gain, and ginger can be a key ingredient in it. It can ignite the digestive fire if you consume it 20 minutes before any meal. Ginger will also increase the secretion of digestive enzymes and activate the salivary glands.
Guggul(3) can assist in bringing down your cholesterol and ensuring better fat metabolism. It can eliminate excess fat and will be perfect for weight loss diets, along with managing other problems, like skin issues, urinary disorders, and hemorrhoids.
Ayurvedic Tips For Weight Management
Here are some essential tips for weight loss.
1. Stop Consuming Alcohol
If you do not want to consume empty calories, then it is best to stop drinking alcohol too frequently. However, a glass of wine can help in digestion for some people. If you are drinking, then please limit yourself to a glass or two and understand what works for the body.
2. Stay Away From Sodas
Sodas generally contain eight to ten spoonfuls of sugar, which are not good for the body at all. It is best to avoid sodas completely if you are planning to prevent weight gain or want to maintain a healthy diet.
3. Eat Properly
We will recommend chewing your food properly while eating and making sure you are eating in a calm place with the least amount of distractions. Also, sip warm water throughout the day for a healthy metabolism.
Moreover, choose freshly prepared meals and avoid stale foods as they may contain complex elements that are hard to digest. That is not all; include a lot of leafy greens in your diet and replace processed foods with them. Leafy greens will provide natural fibers and increase your metabolism.
4. Start The Day With Lemon Water
Lemon juice is beneficial for weight loss, and you should have it every morning on an empty stomach. Begin the day by drinking hot water and squeezing a few drops of fresh lemon in it. This will help in better digestion and improve liver function.
Also, lemon has vitamin C, which can balance the pH level of the body to eliminate toxins for better weight management.
5. Regular Exercise
Engage in physical activity daily which will prevent you from feeling heavy. According to Ayurvedic weight loss tips, exercising daily will fire your Agni. An Ayurvedic lifestyle can include swimming, yoga, tai chi, walking, or sun salutations, and do it for 15 to 20 minutes every day for the best results.
We will recommend doing something that you enjoy so that you can continue with it throughout the year.
6. Sleep Well
People who get poor sleep are often prone to gaining weight or having other health conditions. Now poor sleep may be because of stress, and yoga can help you with that.
Stress reduction will ensure that you have mental clarity, and you should be able to sleep better. Also, it is best to remain active throughout the day, so exercise daily and choose foods that are rich in nutrients.
And avoid eating at night, and you should be able to sleep peacefully.
In ancient times, saints would meditate to keep themselves fit and maintain their overall health. Nowadays, most people are suffering from increased levels of stress, depression, and anxiety, which are reasons behind eating more at all times.
Meditation can help you achieve better health and improve your lifestyle. It can also play a part in reducing stress and keeping the body active. We will recommend spending at least 15 to 20 minutes each day meditating.
8. Do Not Binge Eat At Night
Avoid eating any meals or snacks past bedtime as the digestive system works slowly after sunset. Hence, you may end up gaining pounds as the food can be stored as fat, so eat the largest meal at noon and then reduce your food intake after nightfall.
9. Eat According To The Seasons
Eating according to the seasons will help your body be in touch with nature. For example, during hot summers, eat a lot of carbohydrates, which are present in fresh vegetables and fruits. These will keep you energized and healthy while the food will keep your body cool and fresh for better metabolism.
Then when the monsoon arrives, stick to leafy greens and sprouts, which will help the body detoxify. And winters mean nuts, meat, cheese, and root vegetables that will allow the body to store heat.
If you eat according to the seasons, then you can ensure better absorption of nutrients, helping the body digest faster.
10. Take Walks
Make sure that you take a walk after every meal so that the body can digest better. The moment you move, energy gets used, and the food slowly turns into energy. It may not help you lose weight directly, but you may notice a better metabolism rate.
11. Drinking Hot Beverage
Here is some good news for tea-lovers! You can keep drinking hot tea or hot water throughout the day. In fact, hot water used to be known as an elixir in Vedic traditions as it helped the body get rid of toxins. Ama or toxin is sticky and can be dissolved with water, so a warm cup of tea will help in flushing out toxins easily.
You can add some ginger to the tea but avoid adding any kind of sugar. If you want a hint of sweetness, then you can add a little honey to the tea.
12. Avoid Refined Carbs
Refined carbs are very difficult to digest, and you should avoid them completely if you are trying to lose belly fat. Keep pasta, bread, sweets, biscuits, sweetened drinks, and oily food for special days only. Also, eat according to your doshas for the best results.
Replace junk food, processed food, and refined carbohydrates with healthy greens, basmati rice, whole grains, and fresh fruits, which are to be consumed on a daily basis.
13. Eat Dry Ginger
Dry ginger has thermogenic agents in them, which can burn fat faster. You can start eating dried ginger after every meal to boost your metabolism and lose weight over time. Also, dry ginger can be added to teas or curries, which can benefit you.
14. Consuming Less Calories
If you consume 50% fewer calories than your daily calorie intake, then that could help in losing weight. When the body gets fewer calories, it burns that to keep your energy level in place. There are no calories that can get stored as fat, and your body will start using up the stored fat reserves to produce energy.
15. Consuming Fenugreek
Fenugreek(4) is very good for the body, and you can start consuming it every morning on an empty stomach. Take a spoon of fenugreek powder and have it with water. Otherwise, you can soak fenugreek seeds in water overnight to consume them in the morning for the best results.
16. Chew Properly
If you do not chew your food properly, then food is not broken down well, and that might mean digestion will take longer. Especially when it comes to carbohydrates, chewing is very necessary so that food breaks down easily.
Also, chewing well will mean that you take time to eat which will tell the mind that the stomach is full, and you will end up eating less.
How To Lose Weight Permanently?
There are numerous ways to lose weight at once and not gain it back. They are:
1. Understand Your Agni
The body has a digestive fire, which is also called Agni, and it is the key to any kind of metabolic activity. It plays an important role in weight loss but if it does not work in the right way, it won’t be easy to lose those extra pounds.
Always remember better digestion is the key factor behind losing weight.
2. Learning About Your Doshas
Ayurveda focuses on identifying the body type before looking at weight loss, and it tells us about the five elements, which the body comprises – water, air, fire, ether, and earth. These elements connect with each other and intertwine to create doshas or energies.
Moving on, every dosha is a combination of two of these elements, and the doshas include Kapha, Pitta, and Vata. Every individual will have a combination of these doshas, which keeps them healthy to help them live a balanced life.
Also, they form the structure of your body, which will define how you look and determine the body shape. Once you know the body type, you can find the required information to maintain a healthy weight.
Let us discuss the three dosha types here:
1. Kapha Dosha
This is a combination of earth and water, and people who belong to this category are generally lethargic, loving, and calm.
People with Kapha dosha will have a slow-functioning metabolism, and they should eat more warm and cooked food to keep their digestive system on track. Pungent and bitter food will be very good for the body and will help in digestion.
Also, honey, and warm lemon water can work wonders, so it is best to eat three proper meals and prevent snacking in between. Snacking could make digestion all the more difficult, and it is ideal to avoid it completely.
For people with Kapha dosha, turkey, prawns, lima beans, buttermilk, paneer, dry wine, prunes, carrots, and chili will be good for the diet. However, you should avoid duck, rice, pasta, sweet and sour fruits, cucumber, wheat, cheese, chocolate, and tofu, to name a few.
2. Pitta Dosha
Being a combination of water and fire, those with pitta doshas are known to be intelligent, driven, and joyful. These people generally have a strong digestive system and can digest any food easily. However, salty, pungent, and sour foods should be consumed moderately.
Also, food with cooling properties is very good to get over the imbalance. One can eat dry cereal, pasta, almonds, raisins, black beans, dry wine, chicken, egg whites, and beer as well. However, sour cream, avocado, sweet red wine, dark meat, chocolate, onions, brown rice, and bread with yeast may not work well for them.
3. Vata Dosha
Vata dosha combines ether and air, and those with this are creative, intensive, and expressive. People with Vata dosha should keep having warm water and small meals, which should consist of vegetables and sweet items. It will help in reducing the body’s imbalance to help you function better.
Soft drinks, tea, and coffee may not be very good for these people as the nervous system can be overstimulated by them.
Mindful eating is essential if you want to lose those extra pounds. While we are not saying snacking should be completely eliminated, reserve it for cheat days or once or twice a week.
Try and identify your dosha so that you can make the right food choices, and eat your meals on time while taking breaks in between meals. There is no need to eat breakfast like a king. Instead, eat something light which will keep you full till the lunch hour.
With this, we have reached the end of this guide, and it is time to wrap up. We hope you have enough information now and can start making lifestyle changes. Make sure you satisfy your hunger every time with the above methods so that the body does not keep craving for more food.
Take care and stay healthy!