According to Ayurveda, the root cause of all disease is improper digestion. Why exactly? Because when we don’t fully break down food and assimilate nutrients, we accumulate this undigested, toxic material that in Sanskrit is called ama. When we have ama, our pipes get clogged. All kinds of pipes. Physical and mental. This is a big deal, because any number of bodily functions may be compromised. The bad news is there are many, many causes of ama. The good news is that there are plenty of things you can do about it. Here we go.
Let me start out by saying to all of you long-time spiritual veterans out there that we are talking physical plane here. On a spiritual level, the root cause of all disease is believing in the illusion that we are separate — from the universe, from one another, from our divine nature. Ok, moving on.
The ancient Ayurvedic text, Charaka Samhita, lists the reasons why we accumulate ama (toxins). Don’t get freaked out, just consider this:
- eating too much or too little
- eating too early or too late in the day
- eating inappropriate food for your constitution
- eating while afflicted with extreme emotion (like stress))
- incompatible food combining
- eating before your previous meal is digested
- eating in the wrong season or location (eat locally and seasonally!)
- unclean preparation of food (includes modern day chemicals and toxins, parasites, worms, etc)
As you an see, it’s very easy to have congested, clogged channels. If you have any of the following symptoms, it’s likely that you do have ama:
- body aches
- foul breath
- constipation or diarrhea
- low appetite or lack of taste in the mouth
- mental confusion
- feeling of stagnation or uncleanliness
- craving foods that make you feel sick
- a thick coating on your tongue
One of the beautiful things about Ayurveda is that it always offers a solution to the problem. It requires self-responsibilty and a detachment from your previous habits, but that’s what life is about anyway. So let’s move on with things and get on the right track. We are preventing and reversing disease by adopting the folowing changes! If you have any questions about whether these steps are right for you, please consult your health care practitioner or schedule a phone consult with me here. If you are pregnant or nursing, also do not do these things.
- The very best way is to do a deep cleanse based on the traditional Ayurvedic Pancha Karma process.
- Drink how water with lemon first thing in the morning and throughout the day. No ice water ever.
- Unless you are underweight or debilitated, try fasting one day per week or just eat kitchari.
- Burn up that ama with Dr. Vasant Lad‘s Agni Tea: Boil 1/8 tsp cayenne, 1/2 handful minced ginger, 2 tbs. sucanat, 1/8 tsp rock salt in 1 quart of water for 20 minutes. Cool and then add juice of half a lime.
- Take 1/2 tsp castor oil in ginger tea before bed.
- Take Triphala every night for safe daily detoxing and digestive tract rejuvenation
- Learn about your Ayurvedic constitution and eat appropriately for your type.