How To Include Astringent Foods In Your Diet

How To Include Astringent Foods In Your Diet

In Ayurveda, the astringent taste is generally referred to like the flavor of dryness. It causes a dry sensation in the mouth, mostly due to the contraction of mucous membranes. The astringent taste pacifies Pitta and Kapha Dosha and generally increases Vata. Let’s see the best astringent foods to include in your diet.

Dryness is a dominant feature of Vata dosha so it’s important to know your constitution or Ayurvedic body type before going too heavy on the astringent foods. Keep reading. Here’s what we’ll cover.

  • Types Of Astringent Foods
  • Benefits Of Astringent Foods
  • The Art Of Including Astringent Foods In Your Diet

Ayurveda advises the intake of shad rasas or six tastes in each meal. Though we often hear about the astringent taste, many are unaware of the dietary foods and supplements which are dominant in that taste.

Let’s check out some important food sources which contain the astringent taste.

Types Of Astringent Foods

1. Fruits

Pomegranates, bananas (green), cranberries and apples are all dominant in the astringent taste.

pitta How To Include Astringent Foods In Your Diet

2. Vegetables

Sprouts, broccoli, avocado, lettuce, peas, cauliflower, and potatoes are vegetables dominant in the astringent taste.

Generally, when vegetables are eaten in their raw form it gives an astringent taste. It’s wise to avoid raw vegetables if you have a Vata prakriti. That is because raw vegetables have an astringent taste which increases the dryness of the body, increasing Vata dosha.1

3. Grains

Wheat, quinoa, and rye are dominant in the astringent taste.

4. Protein

Chicken is astringent.

5. Spices

spices for Pitta Vata How To Include Astringent Foods In Your Diet

Nutmeg, oregano, parsley, poppy seeds, rosemary, saffron, turmeric, vanilla, basil, bay leaf, caraway, coriander, dill, fennel, and marjoram are astringent.

Benefits Of Astringent Foods

Are there any benefits to eating foods with an astringent taste? Of course, there are.

When you consume astringent foods, it helps in scraping off fat and improves the assimilation of the food you eat, thereby helping in weight loss. It’s also useful in leucorrhea, diarrhea, and bleeding disorders.

If used in excess it causes gas formation, constipation, emaciation, and convulsions.

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The Art Of Including Astringent Foods In Your Diet

1. Pomegranate Juice

Include a cup of pomegranate juice with your breakfast. Pomegranate is loaded with important nutrients like fiber and protein. It’s high in vitamins C and K as well as folates. You can get a mighty dose of the astringent taste from pomegranate juice.

2. Triphala

Triphala uses, ways to take triphala, how to take triphala. How To Include Astringent Foods In Your Diet

Triphala is an astringent herbal formula. One teaspoon of triphala at bedtime helps in easily cleansing and rejuvenating the body.

3. Broccoli: Roasted Broccoli Quinoa Salad Recipe

Ingredients

  • 1 cup quinoa
  • 2 cups roasted broccoli florets
  • 2 cups of water
  • 1 tsp coconut oil
  • 1/4 tsp black pepper
  • 1/4 tsp cumin powder
  • salt, to taste

Directions
In a medium saucepan, bring the water and quinoa to a boil. Cover, reduce heat to low, and simmer for 15 minutes, or until quinoa is tender.

Remove from heat and let stand for 5 minutes, covered. Remove the lid and fluff with a fork. Transfer the quinoa to a large bowl.

Add the roasted broccoli, pepper, cumin, and salt and gently stir. Lastly, add the coconut oil. Serve and enjoy!

4. Brussels Sprouts: Baked Brussels Sprouts Recipe

Ingredients

  • 1 cup brussels sprouts
  • 1/4 tsp coriander powder
  • 1/4 tsp fennel powder
  • 1 tsp lemon juice
  • 1/4 tsp black pepper powder
  • Salt, to taste

Directions
Preheat oven to 450° Fahrenheit. In a bowl, mix all ingredients together. Line the Brussels sprouts in a baking tray. Bake for 20 minutes, flipping them over halfway through. Serve warm.

5. Cranberries: Cranberry Sauce Recipe

Ingredients

  • 2 cups fresh cranberries
  • 1/2 cup honey
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1/4 tsp cinnamon powder
  • 1 tsp orange zest

Directions
Rinse the cranberries well and drain off the excess water. In a medium saucepan, combine the cranberries and water. Bring the mixture to a boil over medium-high heat, then reduce heat to medium-low.

Cook, stirring occasionally until the cranberries have popped and the mixture has thickened. This takes around 10 minutes. Once the mixture has cooled, add the honey, cinnamon and orange zest. Stir well.

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Please consult a qualified Ayurvedic practitioner before trying the recommendations for astringent foods mentioned in this article. 

References 

  1. Dey, Subhojit, and Parika Pahwa. “Prakriti and Its Associations with Metabolism, Chronic Diseases, and Genotypes: Possibilities of New Born Screening and a Lifetime of Personalized Prevention.” Journal of Ayurveda and Integrative Medicine, Medknow Publications & Media Pvt Ltd, Jan. 2014, www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4012357/.

Arya Krishna is an Ayurvedic Practitioner, educator, and speaker. She completed her Bachelors in Ayurvedic Medicine and Surgery (BAMS) from Amrita School of Ayurveda, Kerala, India. She is registered as an Ayurveda doctor (Reg No: 14664) under the Indian Medical Council. She received a Fellowship in Orthopedic Rehabilitation from Apollo group of Institutions, Hyderabad. An editor with the International Ayurvedic Medical Journal, she previously served as the associate editor of the American Ayurvedic Journal of Health. Before moving to the US in 2015, she was Resident Medical Officer (Ayurveda) in AyurVAID hospital, Bangalore and has knowledge and experience in precision and evidence-based Ayurveda. She was an Ayurveda Domain expert with Health Connect 24 – a unique platform to bring together Ayurveda, Yoga and swadeshi. She is efficient in performing all Panchakarma procedures (purification therapies) and has knowledge of Marma Therapy. Other areas of expertise include Ayurveda diet and lifestyle, women’s health, and rasayana (rejuvenation). She works for the promotion and propagation of Ayurveda by offering lectures, webinars and contributing to various journals. She is a resource person for the Council of Ayurveda Research (CAR) and is an Ayurvedic blogger with Mother Earth Living. Currently, she is residing in Danville, Pennsylvania and is listed as a BAMS doctor with AAPNA (Association of Ayurveda Practitioners of North America). She is an Ayurveda Consultant and Educational coordinator with Be Mind Body Skin, New Jersey and Subject Matter Expert at At Home with Ayurveda, UK.

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