Ama is unique to ayurveda; it builds up in your GI track when food is not digested properly. When our ability to digest food becomes impaired, the body can no longer absorb essential nutrients. Undigested and partially digested food lingers in the body, leading to the formation of ama. Ayurveda views ama as one of the most threatening opponents to good health, linking the majority of health disorders in some way to the presence of this substance. Simply stated, ama is undigested food that begins to eat you which causes inflammation and disease.
Causes of Ama:
- Eating before the previous meal is digested
- Not making lunch the main meal; eating large meals at night
- Ice drinks and cold-food meals
- Food that isn’t fresh, pure and organic – old food, stale food, packaged foods
- Eating without full attention on the meal; watching TV or reading
- Eating too quickly
- Eating while emotionally upset
- Not taking the heaviest parts of the meal first when the agni (digestive fire) is strongest
- Not engaging in light, enjoyable exercise daily whenever possible, or a few times a week
Intermittent fasting is an important part of your health as much as eating is. Allowing the body to fast is important to allow the GI track to eliminate and regenerate ready for the next meal. Common intermittent fasting methods involve daily 16 hour fasts, or fasting for 24 hours, twice per week. Humans have actually been fasting throughout evolution. Sometimes it was done because food was not available. There are a few different ways to fast but the one that is natural to me is the 16/8 method. But I don’t do this often it actually happens naturally. I don’t force myself to fast nor will I ever.
- The 16/8 Method: Also called the Leangains protocol, it involves skipping breakfast and restricting your daily eating period to 8 hours, for example from 1 pm to 9 pm. Then you “fast” for 16 hours in between.
Benefits of intermittent fasting:
- reduces stress and inflammation
- lose weight and belly fat
- changes the function of cells, genes and hormones
- beneficial for heart health
- various cellular repair processes
- what’s good for your gut is good for your brain
- reduces insulin resistance, lowering your risk of Type 2 Diabetes
I can’t stress how important is it to live a balanced life! A holistic lifestyle is a gentle way to treat your body which in my way of thinking is the natural and best way.