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As this is my last blog for the month I would like to talk with you about the importance of digestion (Agni) and how toxins (Ama) can accumulate. This is where Ayurveda really shines and can give us an in depth understanding of not only how our digestion works but how to support its function and how to minimize toxins within the body on a daily basis.

No matter what the quality of our food and diet is, even if it is the best organic homegrown food, if the digestive system (Agni) is not functioning efficiently it will only lead to poor health.

An Ayurvedic diet is essential to help maintain an efficiently functioning Agni (digestion) and is a support aid for correct digestion, which in turn promotes optimal mental and physical health.

This is not something most of us think about or consider and is the most important aspect for maintaining good health.

Food in its whole form is not yet compatible with the body’s tissues and has to undergo many complex functions before it can nourish the body and mind as a whole and our digestive system is required to perform this job.

Ayurveda describes that our digestion can be affected in a negative way by an imbalance in the bodies 3 intelligences (Vata, Pitta and Kapha), the current season we are in, day to day stresses, toxins (Ama) and ones age. Therefore our digestive system is never functioning the same all the time and this needs to be considered if we are to maintain good health. The answer is clear, the support for our digestion needs to be a diet that considers these aspects, Ayurvedic dietetics.

Our digestive system (Agni) can work in four ways the last 3 are caused by poor diet habits and lifestyle, and if not balanced lead to a continuation of poor health.

  1. Balanced: which metabolizes food correctly.
  2. Excessive: digestive enzymes are excessively excreted which burns the nutrients required for the body, food passes through the digestive tract to quickly not allowing the nutrients to be absorbed and leading to poor health, Pitta imbalance.
  3. Irregular: sometimes digests food correctly and other times does not which can lead to toxins (Ama) in the body and Vata imbalance.
  4. Deficient: Undigested food sits in the digestive tract, which can lead to accumulation of toxins (Ama) in the body and Kapha imbalance.One of the most important considerations we can do to maintain good health is to look after our digestive system (Agni). The result is our complexion, spark or aura is vibrant, we maintain a good body temperature, enjoy sustained good health, helps prevent disease, promotes longevity, a strong immune system and ones outlook is positive.So if you are suffering from any health issues or just not feeling quite right you may have an imbalanced digestive system that could do with a tune up (supplementing will not directly go to the cause of the issue). Ayurveda understands the deeper aspects of the digestive system (Agni) and how to maintain its balance through our life.

Not correcting the function of Agni will lead to Ama (toxins):

Some signs or symptoms that we have accumulated toxins (Ama) in the body may be feeling tired, low on energy, suffering from chronic fatigue syndrome, bloating or other aliments. The first question that will come to mind may be “but I’m healthy, I have a healthy diet, I run, I go to the gym etc.…” This is a common thing I come across when people come in for a consultation.  It can be easy to attach ourselves to the identity of our diet and lifestyle and think all is fine, I eat vegetables from my garden, I drink organic wine I am healthy, but still seem to suffer from some form of illness whether that be physical, mental or just a general feeling of being unwell.

The reason for this feeling in Ayurveda is called AMA or toxins. Other symptoms include, waking up feeling heavy, dull and tired, joints are stiff and achy and the tongue has a heavy coating.

Ama (toxins) accumulates in the digestive system from undigested or poorly broken down food, an imbalanced digestive system (Agni), poor food choices, improper food combining, incorrect eating habits and unhealthy lifestyle choices including imbalanced mental cognition.

This sets a negative cycle resulting further in an imbalanced digestive system (Agni) and the accumulation of Ama from diet and lifestyle, which starts to happen on a daily basis. Because the body is under pressure to deal with the toxic overload, the Ama then starts to move its way into our general circulation finding a weak area where it will start to manifest and weaken the tissues.  A common sign can be from never fully recovering from an old sports injury or common cold or flu, tired and aching muscles, back pain. Accumulation of Ama can be the root cause of all disease in the body according to Ayurveda.

Many seek to go on a detox to rid the body of toxins but this can be a short-term solution. Ayurvedic treatment provides the answers for the proper elimination of toxins through diet; herbal medicine and treatment or massage therapy and aids in maintained balanced health throughout our lives sustaining long term results.

If you think you could be suffering from AMA then come in for a visit, our simple and easy recommendations could be just the thing to make you feel better again.

Reference: Richard Clark “Could you be suffering from AMA” Australian Yoga Life

Yours in good Health

Scott Allan