Indiscriminate dieting and intake of steroids which aim at bringing about a
specific body shape have drastic side effects in the long run. The best thing is
not to restrict diet but using natural products to lose weight, says Yogi Ashwini
Ayurveda is not concerned with symptomatic treatment but concentrates on identifying and treating the root cause of imbalances within the body. Balance between doshas, dhatus and malas (waste) is the key to mental and physical wellness. Indiscriminate dieting, intake of steroids and specialised diets which aim at bringing about a specific body shape (ultra thin, muscular) have drastic side effects in the long run. These are often the causes of serious ailments of the immune system as well as psychological disorders. The best thing is not to restrict your diet but use natural products to lose weight. Of the seven dhatus which maintain equilibrium in the body, fat is an essential component. Fat is required for a healthy existence. It is when kapha aggravates medas (fat) dhatu that the balance of the body gets disturbed and a person gains excessive weight. In ayurveda, the herbs which reduce fatty tissues are called lekhanas.
These are prescribed in various combinations to control the disturbed kapha in the medas dhatu. Their action causes burning up of the fatty tissues and consequently drying up of excessive weight. Generally herbs which are bitter and pungent are effective in aiding weight loss. For example, cayenne pepper, black pepper, cumin, basil not only burn fat but also stimulate digestion and augment the digestive fire. Bitter herbs like fenugreek are effective in detoxifying the body and purifying blood. The beneficial enzymes in fenugreek aid digestion of fat, carbohydrates, sugar and proteins. The most beneficial way to eat fenugreek is eating sprouts. The water in which seeds are soaked can also be consumed. Young leaves can be added to sandwiches and salads. Fenugreek is also effective in clearing mucous from the lungs. Fenugreek seed tea causes sweating, which releases toxins through the skin and is effective in bringing down fever.