Herbs are the best option when it comes to remaining healthy. Herbal diet and healthy lifestyle is the key for a long healthy life. The first step to achieve this is to eliminate foods that develop Ama or toxins in the body. These include avoiding foods that contain chemicals, preservatives, frozen, canned and processed foods and leftovers. It is also necessary to avoid caffeine, alcohol, nicotine, candy, sugar, deep fried foods, fermented foods and raw foods as much as possible.
The following herbs can be included in or as a part of ones regular diet based on individual constitutions (vata, pitta or kapha).
Boiled milk can be consumed by adding a pinch of nutmeg (for individuals with vata constitution), Cardamom (for Pitta) and fresh ginger (for Kapha). The foods that are consumed should be natural, fresh, organic and whole foods as far as possible. Cooked foods should be consumed when warm or at room temperature. Warm water should be consumed regularly.
A detoxifying herbal tea can form a part of daily routine. Spices such as cumin, fennel, coriander and ajwain help in enhancing digestion and could be added to the tea. Herbal teas are prepared by bringing two quarts of pure water to boiling and reducing to three fourths. Add the spices or herbs as mentioned below, and allow it to stay for about 15 to 20 minutes. Strain and pour it into a flask and drink the tea early in the morning and through the day after fifteen minutes of finishing a meal.
Vata Constitution: ½ tsp each of cumin and fennel seeds and ¼ tsp of Ajwain seeds.
Pitta Constitution: ½ tsp each of coriander and cumin seeds and 2 fresh mint leaves.
Kapha Constitution: ½ tsp cumin seeds, one clove, and 1-2 fresh ginger roots.
Tulsi (holy basil) which is known for its cleansing abilities can be added to water used for preparing herbal tea.
Including plenty of vegetables and fruits as part of regular diet also forms a part of herbal diet. Greens, bitter gourd, radish etc are considered as cleansing vegetables. Apples and pears when cooked and consumed are considered to be best for elimination. Other fruits such as Pomogranate, Pappaya, Prunes and Pineapple help in cleansing and digestion of the body. Herbs such as ginger, lemon, mint and Cilantro help in cleansing and purifying the digestive system.
Similarly certain spices such as cumin, clove, fenugreek, dried ginger, turmeric, ajjwain, fennel, Chinese Cinnamon and coriander can be added while cooking, as they are considered to be good for digestion and detoxification. Apart from making these herbs part of regular diet, following a healthy lifestyle routine with three meals a day consumed in right proportion at right intervals, and by keeping evening meals lighter than the afternoon, will go a long way in maintaining good health.