Practice this to inculcate a healthy habit of eating only twice in a day !

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1. Avoid untimely eating to keep your body healthy !

A. Be cautious if you are eating chips or other snack items at night !

If you are irregular about sleeping and waking timings, you do not exercise daily, you eat chips, farsan, chivda, bakarwadi and other snack items at night, and yet you are healthy, then consider it as your good fortune earned from the good deeds performed in previous births. However, be aware, once this good fortune is over then the effects of these bad habits will surface in the form of diseases. At that time, you will regret that you could have been better off sticking to good habits. We are seekers and we will be able to perform spiritual practice only if we remain fit. Hence, we must keep our body healthy in order to perform spiritual practice. To achieve this, follow only two things; eat just 2 times adequately in the day and exercise regularly !

B. Eat any food items which you like but only during the meals !

Is Ayurveda against eating tangy and tasty food items? Absolutely not. On the contrary, if one consumes food with taste and interest then one feels satiated. Therefore, there should be variety in the food that we consume, however, even if one highly likes a food item, it is important to eat it at the right time and in correct quantity. If this rule is not followed then its ill-effects would definitely be felt sooner or later. If one is able to digest any food item of choice, then there is no objection in consuming it as long as it is eaten during the meals. Do not eat at any irregular times. Following this rule will help keeping your body healthy and hence enable you to perform spiritual practice properly.

Question : To keep my body healthy, I want to eat just 2 times in a day. However, if I skip my morning breakfast and evening snack, my body gives me shivers. Sometimes I experience stomach heat. In such a situation, is it yet advisable for me to stick to eating 2 times in a day?

Answer :

2. For a healthy life, one must eat only 2 times in a day

Our body behaves the way we habituate it. If we adopt good habits, we become healthy. If we adopt wrong habits, diseases occur. Until now, we had a wrong habit of eating 4 times in a day. Now although we have decided to eat only 2 times in a day, once it is time to eat as per earlier eating routine, pitta (Bile) will automatically get secreted in the body. Some people have good physical health. They do not get distressed by this secreted pitta and therefore can easily break the bad habit of eating 4 times and adopt the good habit of eating only 2 times in a day. The role of mind is also important here. If there is a strong determination of mind, it becomes easier to break bad habits and adopt good habits.


3. The reason behind shivering and stomach heat

According to modern science, acid (hydrochloric acid) gets secreted in the stomach at the routine time of eating, while bile and pancreatic juice are secreted in the first part of the intestine (in the duodenum). When we eat, the food consumed gets mixed with these secretions and the intensity of these secretions gets reduced. If we do not eat, the intensity of the secretions does not diminish. Some people cannot tolerate this intensity, resulting in shivering or stomach heat.


4. It is easy to break the bad habit of eating 4 times with the help of ghee!

If one desires good health, it is necessary to break the bad habit of eating 4 times and adopt a good habit of eating only 2 times a day. This requires controlling the increased levels of pitta. It is mentioned in Ayurveda (Ashtangahrudaya, Sutrasthan, Chapter 13, Verse 4) that ‘पित्तस्य सर्पिषः पानम्’ meaning ‘Drinking ghee’ is the best medicine for pitta. By consuming ghee, it is very easy to reduce intake of food from 4 times a day to 2 times a day.

5. Do this !

A. In the beginning, explain to your mind that ‘the habit of eating 2 times a day will bring good health and by consuming ghee the increased pitta will get reduced and it will not cause any ill effects on your health.’ With this, your mind will happily participate in your ‘health campaign’.

B. Now start to eat only 2 times a day.

C. Do not impose any restrictions on your diet. Eat whatever you can digest. Even food items you like can be consumed, provided you can digest them, and they are consumed during meals only.

D. If you get untimely hunger apart from the 2 mealtimes, chew a spoonful of ghee. Ghee liquifies naturally due to body heat as it is chewed. If it is difficult to eat plain ghee, it is okay to add some sugar or jaggery to the ghee. (Use a teaspoon to measure ghee. Consuming 1 teaspoon full liquified ghee is adequate. If the ghee is frozen, use this measure to reduce the quantity accordingly.)

E. After eating 1 tsp of ghee, the hunger will subside after about 15 minutes. If it doesn’t subside, eat one more tsp of ghee. In this way, by estimating how much ghee you need to eat to satisfy your hunger, you can eat that much ghee the next time. Usually, 4 teaspoons of ghee at the maximum would be required to satisfy the hunger. This quantity could be either more or less as per the constitution of the body.

F. If you feel that by mistake you have consumed excess ghee and suspect that it will cause indigestion, then drink half cup of hot water.

G. If you need to eat prior to consuming medicines, tell your doctor about your mealtimes and seek his advice on suitable time to consume medicines.

H. To be able to digest the ghee consumed, exercise in the morning with empty stomach.


6. Benefits of ghee

Consuming ghee aids in satisfying untimely hunger. Body shiver is avoided. If there is an occurrence of stomach heat, that too subsides quickly. Increased level of pitta is properly controlled. Since ghee is a high energy food, it also removes fatigue. After a few days, the body gets used to eating only 2 times a day. Then untimely hunger stops and hence there is no need to consume ghee at such times. One can then consume 2 teaspoons of ghee along with the meal itself. If this is continued regularly, the body feels adequately hungry during the 2 mealtimes and therefore required amount of food is consumed. Therefore, thin people should not be afraid that their weight will be reduced if they eat only 2 times. Controlling diet in this way helps obese to lose their weight.


7. Summary

The above can be summarized in following manner in a practical dialect. Pitta is a worker. If it is unable carry out its work in its designated workplace i.e., stomach, it will start creating nuisance in other places like blood. This nuisance could result in trembling effect or stomach heat. If this pitta in the form of worker is given 2 spoons of ghee to digest, then it gets occupied in that work and does not cause nuisance elsewhere.


8. Practice the techniques mentioned in this article as per your own ability!

If there is a firm determination in mind and readiness to face the trouble for 4 days, it is easily possible to reduce eating times from 4 to 2 as given in this article; however, many people do not have such determination. Many doubts keep arising in the minds of such people even before starting. Such people should not initiate the actions given in this article in haste. Others should not urge them to do so either. Doubting seekers should follow their regular routine. They should stress the importance of remaining healthy for performing spiritual practice, upon their mind by giving auto suggestions. Those determined seekers who will practice these rules with unwavering mind, will surely get benefited. Hearing their good experiences will boost the confidence of skeptical seekers and their minds will also become determined. Once this happens, everyone will be able follow this easily.’

– Dr. Meghraj Madhav Paradkar, Sanatan Ashram, Ramnathi, Goa.

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