Food is the only input for the nourishment or otherwise of the body. The first symptom to appear with any variation in food is AJEERNA or INDIGESTION, which in common language is termed as GASTRITIS or GASTRIC.
Gastritis is the most common disease that most of the people are suffering in the whole world. Each and every individual would have suffered from this disease more than once in lifetime. And for many, it is a “NORMAL” problem which they have accepted it to be so.
Human digestive system is a beautifully designed “factory” to breakdown the raw materials (food consumed) and to give micro fine nutrients as final product, with few wanted or unwanted byproducts. There are many components involved in normal functioning of this “factory”. To mention few of them:
- Digestive juices and bile secretions – Agni.
- Mucous secretions – Kapha.
- Motility and space in the system – Vata.
- Quality and quantity of food consumed.
- Time of food consumed.
- Digestion of previously taken food.
- Compatibility and Combination of food consumed.
- Mental condition while taking food.
- Functional and structural health of the structures in the system.
Maintaining normalcy or balanced functioning of these factors is the primary requisite of healthy digestion and thereby healthy body overall.
Hence it is of utmost importance to take healthy food adhering to the rules of food intake.
Few points to remember while taking food:
- Food should be freshly prepared and warm
- Presence of fat in the food in form of naturally processed oil (sesame, olive, groundnut etc.) or ghee.
- Quantity which should not cause discomfort in abdominal region.
- Timely intake of food after ascertaining the appetite and capacity of digestion.
- Consuming food with a happy mood and without any distraction (Televison, Social media etc.)
- Avoiding or restricted use of “spicy, pungent, salty, sour food” is very much important if there is history of symptoms of Gastritis in form of Burning sensation in stomach, chest and throat and Sour eructations.
- Avoiding “gas forming food” such as Potato, Cabbage, Cauliflower, Sprouts, Bengal gram, Rajma etc is important if there is history of gastritis with symptoms of increased eructations, Bloated abdomen, Farts.
- Beverages like tea and coffee may be bad for acidity conditions too. Limited, the better.
- Staying awake late night can add to the gastrititis trouble already present, hence please keep in mind to sleep as early as possible.
- Avoiding “Heavy to digest” foods like paneer, cheese, curds, processed food etc is necessary if there is history of symptoms like lack of appetite, vomiting sensation or nausea, and vomiting.
After describing all the “DON’Ts”, the article would be incomplete without discussing the “Dos”.
- The food articles which are RIGHT for this problem, on daily basis which helps to maintain optimum gastric functioning are: Old raw rice, Wheat, Millets, Mung dal, Milk, Buttermilk, Butter, Ghee, well boiled and shallow oil fried tender Vegetables like Bottle gourd, ridge gourd, bitter gourd, Carrot, Beans, Pumpkin, Amorphophallus (Suran), Fresh and tender radish, Drumstick.
- Moderate quantity of Luke warm or boiled and cooled water helps improve digestion and prevents acidity and gas formation.
- Spices like Jeera, Asafotida, Ginger, Turmeric, Coriander, Mustard, Jaggery are a good part of our healthy food habits on daily basis.
Said that, we may be attracted to so many junk foods and other “NOT RIGHT for GASTRITIS” foods. But, it is important to see that the quantity of such food is very less, if at all consumed, so that it doesn’t cause much discomforts and aggravate problems.
Nityam hitahara vihara sevi vishayeshvasakta bhavatyarogah||
Good eating habits, moderate exercise and control over the senses, keeps an individual healthy!
Dr Neelakanta J Sajjanar MD (Ayu)
Assistant Professor, Sri Sri College of Ayurvedic Science and Research hospital, Bengaluru
And Consultant Physician, Ayurcentral, Malleshpalya, Bengaluru