Yoga And Fasting For A Lifetime Of Health

Source : Article Snatch

Many people are curious about the idea of yoga and fasting and want to know how this applies to ourselves. Much has been written, along rather spectacular lines, about how Yogis sometimes go without touching food for days and even weeks. This is true, but it is nothing for the Western student to experiment with. Prolonged fasting, unless one has been trained for it, can only be harmful.

On the other hand, just as it is advisable to learn to eat a little less at each meal than we think we need, to leave the table always with a slight feeling of “room for a bit more,” so it is good occasionally to skip eating for a day.

In fact, if you can arrange it without fuss, try making a practice of giving your stomach a day’s rest once every month. This automatically will help keep your appetite in check, promote healthy elimination, and will force your body to burn up whatever unneeded reserves it may be accumulating. Naturally, however, on fast-days you are free to drink all the fruit juice you want along with plenty of water. Another good plan is to go on a diet of nothing but milk one day out of the month.

Fasting, or cutting down drastically on food, is also often recommended when one is ill. But actually the decision as to whether or not to eat at such times may be left largely to your own instincts. “Feed a cold and starve a fever” is a safe generalization, but only a generalization at best. A sick animal will not touch food. Neither will you if your system warns you not to.

But if you have enough appetite to feel hunger pangs, food is probably just what you need. The main thing is never to eat simply because mealtime has rolled around. Never stuff. Do not be afraid to skip an occasional meal.

All in all, a frugal, balanced diet rich in vitamins, minerals, proteins, calcium and roughage will soon begin to pay off in improved health and a sense of well-being and will have an effect on your appearance as well. You will find your weight adjusting to the optimum for you, whether you start out too fat or too thin. yoga and fasting in moderation can only benefit you.

If you have been suffering from constipation, you will experience relief. Your muscle tone will improve, your skin and eyes will become clear and youthful and the hair will begin to take on new sheen. Nutrition itself invariably plays a large role as a beauty aid. Moreover, you will sleep better and feel more relaxed, for your very nerves will be better nourished.

A well, but lightly nourished, body also results in a new alertness of mind, a serenity and a positive attitude toward other people which the average Westerner rarely experiences. Around us, too many persons live to eat. The Yogi, on the contrary, eats to live – but even while he lets his mind soar above the earth, he does not allow himself to be superior or indifferent to its products, food included.

Sama, tranquility or control of thoughts by withdrawing the mind from worldly affairs, is the final aim of yoga. It need not be the aim of the average student. yoga and fasting should be kept in perspective. It is enough for you to remember that food is provided for your benefit, and that it is well to take an intelligent attitude toward it. Food, like friends, must be chosen with discretion.

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