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Diet & Energy

Fin2010-07-05 03:58:17 +0000 #1
A lot of members I expect are vegans/vegetarians. Many I expect still conform to a regular western diet of meat.

My question is many of you switched from a meat diet to vegetarian diet – did you find that this switch caused a reduction in energy?

A developing Yoga practice plus a vegetarian diet conducive to your body type (Vata, Pitta, or Kapha) is a good combination. Do you agree?

Thank you,

Best Wishes & Namaste.

Fin
Hubert2010-07-05 04:14:39 +0000 #2
I found taking up a vegetarian diet increased my energy, and not the other way. (I am a 99% vegetarian - that 1 % is social meat consumption, very rare now, for sake of other people, I am not vegan, but I have two vegan days a week, when I avoid dairy too)

It also depends on how swift the "switch" is. The body does not tolerate switches well. So if you suddenly change your habits you might experience reduced energy level, but this is transitory.

To escape this trap many unpatient people experience, and draw wrong conclusions, lifestyle changes should be slow and steady instead of swift switches. I've read about an experiment when a group of individuals were "switched" to a vegetarian diet. For most, the energy level increased a bit, but mainly there was no change. A famous martial artist, part of the group, declared his muscle tone was not quite the same. But, and there is a big but: the whole experiment last only two weeks. Now, I say, this experiment is not relevant. If it had last months, in order that the bodies of these people can adapt and find a new balance using other types of food, and develop new satisfactions, I am sure the results would have been much more in favor of the vegetarian diet.

I find this diet is fitting for me. If one looks at me, will say, I'm skinny. (vata) But this is not because my diet. This is inherited constitution. That's why vegetarian diet is fitting for me, and not a cause of the diet. I found that fatty, meat based food is hardly tolerable for my body.

Perhaps this it is different for kapha or pitta people living in different climates.
Nichole2010-07-05 04:08:50 +0000 #3
Fin,

Are you curious about strictly physical energy or subtle energies too?

Perhaps seeing changes in thoughts, desires and cravings, and other seemingly unrelated changes are of interest too? (They are to me so I am hoping that you don't mind if I saddle onto your original question!)

When my diet is void of meat, I have to say that I perceive a significant change at a subtle level (2, 3, 4 koshas mostly). I have less clarity for myself on the physical level: I still have equal amounts of energy, but in the past I have had difficulties balancing my physical digestion without the presence of meat. This is no longer an issue.

Fresh vegetables, seeds, nuts and fruits are alive and have prana. Most can continue to grow if soaked in water or if their seeds are replanted, but meat is dead; there is no prana or life force in meat.

Professionally, and personally, I agree with your last statement, but I would like to expand it to consider not alone the doshas as in your personal vikriti and prikriti, but also the gunas, and climate and seasons where you live, and your phase of life. From the age that you shared in another post, you are moving from the pitta years of your life and into vata. These considerations help us to be specific to our needs throughout our dynamic lives. It is quite a lovely and intricate dance, no?!

Peace,
Fin2010-07-05 05:15:17 +0000 #4
hi Hubert,

Thank you very much for your response. I agree with you our physical body protests a lot as we change our life style. About two years ago I drastically changed my diet to a Vata type diet after a fairly intensive regime of cleaning out vital organs (Liver, Kidneys, GI tract ). Many of my chronic ailments (arthritis etc) vanished. However NOW although free of ailments (which is great!) my energy level is poor and there exists temptations to revert back to old dietary habits – which I have resisted!

As I reflect more I think I am at that stage where I need to balance the energies between my first Kosh (the Physical body) & the second Kosh (subtle body) as I am now becoming more aware of my chakras – although Kundalini has NOT arisen. I do however get occasional spasms. I feel a better/deeper awareness of the second Kosh is imminent!

As your physical energy has risen do you find that you are now better aware of koshas 2 & higher?

I thank you for your response.

Namaste,

Fin
Fin2010-07-05 05:02:06 +0000 #5
Dear Nichole,

Yes, indeed I am very much curious about the subtle energies, you have hooked on to my thoughts just right. See also my response to Hubert.

You said:

I have less clarity for myself on the physical level …

So are you saying that when you consume a meat free diet you physical state protests, but koshas 2 & higher are better perceived? That is very interesting for me since I feel my refined life style & diet is a challenge (with constant cravings for food etc) but my awareness of the chakras & meditation is better! Have you experienced anything similar during your sadhana?

Your last paragraph is very profound & pertinent for me. Yes indeed I am moving from the Pita years of my life to the Vata years – I had not thought in those terms, vibrations in kosh 1 is certainly not as before but awareness of the existence of kosh 2 & above is better. Meditation is deeper & better as well. Very very interesting, thanks for stimulating these thoughts.

My question is – are you saying that the vitality I had during Pita yrs is no longer available? My thinking is that when you yoke the first two koshas i.e. making our subtle energy & physical health strong we would naturally generate fresh vitality (irrespective of age), do you agree?

At the end of the day I think it all boils down to creating an internal harmony & balance so that we can commune with the SELF! Right?????

Thank you for stimulating all these thoughts I much appreciate it.

Namaste,

Best Wishes,

Fin
InnerAthlete2010-07-05 06:21:32 +0000 #6
I have not "switched" to a vegetarian diet or a vegan diet but I have, over time, made changes in how I eat. These days it is no beef or pork. I do eat some fish and occasionally chicken. But not that often.

I do not find a particular reduction in energy as a result of my eating habits. I find I feel better from the changes in my eating habits.

One of the common misconceptions about your constitution relative to diet ( in the ayurvedic construct) is that you should eat this or that merely becasue said food is a kapha food or a vatta food. Foods should be balancing. When there is no imbalance then there is no need for a dietary change to be implemented. In addition, the misconception is futher rooted by the concept that this vatta food creates a vatta condition. Not all vatta foods on a list are vatta in your body. It is how the food is in you. Some vattas can consume a vast quantity of popcorn without aggravating their vatta nature. Others have only one kernel and they are lost.

A developing yoga practice and a balancing diet are a good combination, I do agree.

Quote:

Originally Posted by Fin



A lot of members I expect are vegans/vegetarians. Many I expect still conform to a regular western diet of meat.

My question is many of you switched from a meat diet to vegetarian diet – did you find that this switch caused a reduction in energy?

A developing Yoga practice plus a vegetarian diet conducive to your body type (Vata, Pitta, or Kapha) is a good combination. Do you agree?

Thank you,

Best Wishes & Namaste.

Fin
Hubert2010-07-05 06:14:08 +0000 #7
Quote:

Originally Posted by Fin



So are you saying that when you consume a meat free diet you physical state protests, but koshas 2 & higher are better perceived? That is very interesting for me since I feel my refined life style & diet is a challenge (with constant cravings for food etc) but my awareness of the chakras & meditation is better! Have you experienced anything similar during your sadhana?

Namaste,

Best Wishes,

Fin

A good diet does not generate cravings. You eat, the body gets what it needs, you move on.

I don't know your diet but it seems to me that you either eat less than your real needs, in case which you should eat more, or your diet is still forced, in case which you should change it to a less demanding one, while finding another target for your attention. The best way to escape an attachment is to create a different one, (better, more spiritual one ) and cultivate it. The old attachment will get less and less attention, until it completely dries out. It is important that you like your new "attachment". Immediatly dropping all attachments is not possible, and trying this rises terrible temptations.

As about your questions ... I have little experince of my subtle bodies. I see chakras as "organs", the eyes and ears we percieve higher spiritual realities with. I am still blind and deaf, excepting very rare occasions.

Regarding diet's effects on these ... a good diet produces no adverse effects, though alone it will never be able to "open" them. I see myslef as a whole, not as a construct of flesh, and chakras and other things. What I experienced is that hunger or unsatisfied cravings cause irritability, so I avoid being very hungry, and I managed to direct my desires towards things what are good to me as a whole and not good only for my senses.

I like the simplicity and wisdom of the Upanishads and the Yoga Sutras.

It is said, you should avoid eating too much, and the disciple should eat cereals and milk. This is most important in the phase of Pranayama, when the nadis are purified.

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