Yoga and Vegetarianism

Yoga and Vegetarianism

“You are what you EAT.” Yoga and Vegetarianism go in conjunction with each other. They both form a framework for physical and spiritual harmony. Many yogis choose to be vegetarians because they practice non-violence (Ahimsa). Ahimsa is one of the highest tenets of yoga philosophy. A vegetarian diet is free of needless cruelty, harm, and injustice. Be it to self, animals, plants, or Earth.

Our emotions and well-being majorly depend on the food we eat. As per Ayurveda, our food (Aahar) is classified based on three qualities that govern human life – Sattva, Rajas, and Tamas. Even Bhagavad Gita (chapter 17) specifies these three qualities (Guna). Thus, we are what we eat.

Tamasic, Rajasic and Sattvic

1)Tamasic food (stale, overcooked, contaminated, and otherwise rotten or impure foods) creates lethargy or sluggishness.

2) Rajasic food (Bitter, salty, and sour: including meat, fish, and alcohol) creates restlessness, pain, and discomfort.

3) Sattvic food (milk, butter, fruit, vegetables, and grains) consists of a vegetarian diet, that creates lightness, vitality, strength, energy, and positivity.

These three qualities are present in our bodies in varying degrees. Consequently, they have a direct influence on our moods, emotions, and health. There is an ancient Ayurvedic proverb that sums it up. “When diet is wrong, medicine is of no use. When diet is correct, medicine is of no need.”

Advantages of Vegetarian Diets

Vegetarian diets are associated with several health advantages. Firstly, lower cholesterol and blood pressure levels. Secondly, the rate of heart attacks, strokes, kidney failure, and cancer is lower. Thirdly, the immune system is stronger. Additionally, vegetarians are less likely to become obese than meat-eaters. Also, you are more composed and in greater control of your emotions.

Animal protein contains a high quantity of uric acid. As a result, it gets deposited in the joints. It causes stiffening of the joints, gout, rheumatism, headaches, cramps, and nervousness. The food we eat reflects in our yoga practice too. A vegetarian diet has a positive impact on the quality of yoga practice. It is lighter and cleaner thus, leading to more energy and easy movements through the asanas. There is more fluidity of movement.

Food on your plate has an impact on the world.

Yoga practice accompanied with a sattvic diet truly creates wonders. It leads to a kind of shift in awareness. There is a connection between what’s on your plate and its impact on the world around you. Our earth already has many issues. The least we can do is “we don’t become an issue.” What’s on the other end of your fork has far-reaching implications. It affects the health of the planet.

Some of you love to eat that juicy steak. We have every right to nourish ourselves but, we don’t have a right to wantonly take another life just for the pleasure of our taste buds. The choice is yours!!! It is up to you, and it always has been! Make your choices wisely and stick to them. You might have different opinions, morals, human rights, and ideas. But choosing DEATH on the left-hand leads to destruction in many ways and, choosing LIFE on the right-hand works towards a better future and a hope that our earth won’t perish.

Yoga teaches compassion

Everyone may not be able to do a headstand but, everyone can EAT mindfully. Each and every life is sacred. The goal of yoga is to dissolve the state of exclusiveness and non-dual way of looking at things. Accept that everything is a part of you, inclusive and one consciousness. When you realize this, you don’t want to harm any being. This feeling of oneness extends to a desire to care for the environment. Do you wish to step into transcendental reality and have a lighter impact on the planet? Adopting a vegetarian diet stands as a great choice to start. You can practice compassion three times a day- when you sit down to eat.

What’s at the end of your fork??

Let’s all work towards a cruelty-free future. Well-being and happiness of all is a radical step towards a global awakening. Dissolve the thought of “otherness” because it gets in the way of enlightenment. We all must act out of pure loving kindness. Don’t wait for a better world!! Start now to create a world of harmony and peace. The solution is at the end of your fork.

Yoga and Vegetarianism

Yoga Journey

तत्र स्थितौ यत्नोऽभ्यास: ll

Author: Dr. Roopal Patel

I’m Dr. Roopal Patel from Mumbai. A Dentist, Mrs. India 2018 runner-up, an International Yoga Instructor, the Chief Administrator of a Yoga Institute, a fitness model, and an avid traveler at heart with an insatiable and burning desire to explore the world, having set foot in 100 countries across 6 continents as of now. An adventurous alpha mother and a spunky globetrotter who has a claim to fame: ‘Atlas in my hands, adventure in my eyes, and never-ending wanderlust in my veins.’ My aim in life is to inspire and bring a smile to every life I touch. I live by the phrase "Carpe Diem" and firmly believe in यद् भावं तद् भवति ।