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
Pomegranates, bananas (green), cranberries and apples are all dominant in the astringent taste.
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
Wheat, quinoa, and rye are dominant in the astringent taste.
Chicken is 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.
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
- 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
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
- 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
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
- 2 cups fresh cranberries
- 1/2 cup honey
- 1/2 cup water
- 1/4 tsp cinnamon powder
- 1 tsp orange zest
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.
Please consult a qualified Ayurvedic practitioner before trying the recommendations for astringent foods mentioned in this article.
- 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/.