I want to start this section by saying that by no means do you need to follow any particular diet when practicing yoga. That said I personally believe that your diet should be one that is healthy, energy promoting and vitality giving. For me the purpose of practicing yoga is to strengthen my body, mind and spirit – I don't think this can be achieved with a poor diet. It is widely known that eating certain foods can result in a host of negative outcomes such as:
– Energy spikes and subsequent crashes.
– Fat gain.
– Slowing of mental faculties.
– Poor skin, hair and nails.
– Irreparable damage to your internal organs.
It is also known that eating the right foods can provide the opposite to every negative stated.
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With this in mind the diet I like to follow is one that promotes a healthy body, increased energy, rapid weight loss and an increase in intelligence. I create my diet around whole foods and avoid manufactured produce, products and ingredients. By eating whole foods that haven't been processed I am preventing toxins and additives from entering my body. This small step alone can change your life and I say that without exaggeration. Not only will you be more energized, lose weight and feel better, it has also been proven that you will live longer. Think about that last sentence there. Simple changes to your diet can add to your lifespan. Given that both meditation and yoga have also been linked to longevity of life you can start to imagine how potent mixing a proper diet with yoga can be. As I said you don't need to follow any diet but I believe if you follow (even roughly) the suggestions I make you will see accelerated results.
– Lean protein sources: chicken, beef etc.
– Oily fish: salmon, tilapia, tuna etc.
– Fruit and lots of it.
– Extra virgin-olive oil.
– Whole grains such as oats or brown rice (avoid white)
– Legumes: lentils, beans etc.
– Nuts: natural not salted or sweetened.
– Green vegetables and lots of them.
– Garlic, turmeric, ginger, cumin, paprika, pepper flakes etc.
– Natural Yoghurt.
– Breads, bagels etc.
– Ground meat.
– High fat meats: pork, chorizo etc.
– Any sweets, treats, popcorn, chips etc.
– Bottled sauces and spices.
– Canned foods, except legumes and tomatoes.
– Anything that you looks as if it has been manufactured or processed.
When it comes to beverages, I strongly suggest sticking to black coffees, herbal teas and water. These are the cleanest beverages you will find and anything else (including fruit juices and smoothies) tends to be packed full of additives. As for alcohol, try to limit your consumption to 1-3 drinks per week. I would suggest opting for red wine or a clear liquor. When it comes time to make your meals you can follow along with some of the recipes included as your Free Gift (check the front of the book or click here). These are some sample recipes for breakfast, lunch and dinner that I regularly whip up. If you prefer to get creative in the kitchen then go ahead and enjoy. Have fun with it and amaze yourself at the delightful meals you can make using the preapproved foods list. If you're wondering about portion control I would suggest 4-5 small meals per day. Ensure each meal has a protein source, lots of vegetables, a carb source and a small amount of fat (usually the oil you cook in achieves this).