Better Health through Digestion with an Ayurvedic Diet
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OjasOjas is the poetic term used in Ayurveda for heartiness. If a person has a healthy skin & flesh, is resilient to disease and injury, and has "juiciness" Ayurveda says they have good ojas. Ojas is associated with mental stability and an earthy strength to endure. It nurturing presence is calming and grounding. It brings quality and peace of mind. It satisfies the flesh, bringing with it the confidence needed to protect the body, mind and spirit from burning desires. Ojas may be compared to a cement or glue that binds and contains the body, mind, and spirit into a functional whole.
Strong fertility is a sign of ojas because the body nourishes reproductive organs only after other tissues have been nourished. In a sense, your body's ability to nourish reproductive organs is dependent upon the confidence that your survival needs are assured. Food that is high in ojas also feeds the genital organs.
Ojas is said to have the smell of burnt rice and the color of ghee. Some ojas building foods include ghee, rice, milk, sugar, almonds, and raisins. The body transforms food into ojas through digestion and metabolism.
Maintenance of ojas requires conservation of your vital energy (prana), as well as a healthy metabolism (tejas) to refine the quality of your fluids and tissues. Inability to nourish yourself, lack of self-care and self-nurture create internal insecurity and ojas deficiency. Over-exertion can further deplete Ojas. If you are underweight, you might be ojas deficient. Hyperactivity and erratic behavior indicate a lack of satisfaction also associated with deficient Ojas.
A person who is overweight with clammy skin might have lots of ojas, but poor quality because the tissues are toxic and overwhelmed with fluids. Poor quality ojas is similar to ama and mucous.
TejasTejas is the intelligence of our body and mind. Tejas directs our use of energy, including thoughts, digestion, immunity, and all metabolic activity. Because of Tejas, our cells know how to communicate with each other via hormones and other chemical messengers. They know exactly how much oxygen and food to eat and waste products to eliminate. When this natural intelligence becomes occluded due to injury or toxicity then tejas can be blocked. Excess tejas is similar to Pitta type ama and is yellow in color, such as when a person has jaundice or too much bilirubin in the blood.
PranaPrana is the usable energy directed by tejas and provisioned by ojas. Oxygen is also form of prana because oxygen helps us convert food into energy. Prana is kinetic energy while ojas is potential energy. Using too much prana causes a deficiency of ojas.
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