It is said that “Man is what he eats”. But does merely eating good is enough for a good life? No. what we eat should also be digested for good health. Everything you eat goes through your digestive system. Hence proper digestion is important for your overall health. Proper digestion determines how well you break down the food, absorb nutrients, produce energy, and eliminate waste. Digestive system has a major impact on overall body functions and day-to-day life.
Ayurveda is an indigenous medical system of India. Ayurvedic line of treatment aims not only at removal of root cause of disease, but also at the restoration of the equilibrium of bodily functions. According to Ayurveda, healthy digestion is the foundation of physical and mental wellbeing.
The concept of Agni also known as digestive fire is Ayurveda’s major contribution to digestive system. Agni is a Sanskrit word which represents thermal energy in the living beings. It is responsible for transforming the food into the sustenance that supports your existence. Agni contributes to the lustre and complexion of the skin. It also contributes to energy, strength and growth of the body. Ultimately, it is the Agni that determines which substances enter our tissues, and which substances should be removed as waste. In this way, Agni is the gatekeeper of life.
Digestive fire, called as Jatharagni, is located in the stomach and is the most important of the 13 types of Agni in the body. It governs digestion, absorption, and assimilation of food. Agni Maintenance of physiological functions in a state of equilibrium is dependent on the normal state of Agni. The abnormal state of Agni contributes to pathological changes and absence of Agni results in death of the living being. Therefore, maintenance of human life itself is dependent on Agni. In fact, according to Ayurveda, when the Agni is extinguished, death soon follows.
What are signs of normal Digestive system
According to Ayurveda digestive system functions properly only when Agni is in equilibrium. Proper functioning and equilibrium of Agni is concluded only when you have following sensations.
1. No discomfort after digesting meal.
2. Stomach does not feel full for long time.
3. Consistent, timely well-formed, soft stool
4. Pleasant anticipation for the next meal.
5. Good strength and better immunity
6. Good skin lustre and smooth texture
7. Proper functioning of all sensory organs
What are the signs of poor digestive system?
When digestion is hampered, almost all body organs take a toll. There are not only physical manifestations but also mental disturbances due to poor digestion. Here are some common signs of poor digestive system.
1. Loss of appetite and Lethargy
2. Recurrent infection
4. Incomplete evacuation of bladder or difficult micturition
5. Improper functioning of sense organs
6. Depression/ feeling unhappy
7. Body oedema or swelling
8. Marked loss of energy and general debility
9. Loss of enthusiasm and Improper sleep
To avoid all these health consequences, it is necessary to maintain optimum digestive health. For this purpose, Ayurveda advocates some easy tips for better digestion. Here are some simple tips for healthy digestion.
1. Eat two full meals per day at regular times. Lunch should be heavier than dinner. One or two small snacks can be taken.
2. Eat only when you are hungry!!! Do not eat just to follow your eating schedule if you are not hungry.
3. Eat warm and moist meals. Never eat or drink extremely cold items.
4. Do not talk a lot while eating. Focus on eating only. Even laughing a lot while eating is not recommended.
5. Sit down and relax to eat. Do not eat while angry or frustrated. Eat in a peaceful and comfortable environment.
6. Use proper utensils for cooking the food. Do not use poor quality or broken utensils. Same is applicable for food serving.
And if you have indigestion for a very long time, seek help. There are natural ways to resolve it and ayurvedic medicines can be useful. Herbs like ginger, Haritaki , draksha are useful in correcting indigestion. Ojus is a complete digestive aid by Charak Pharma. It improves Agni i.e. digestive fire and thus, it helps to boost digestion through its effect on secretion of digestive enzymes, motility of GI tract. Amalaki in Ojus act as powerful appetizer. Haritaki and Shunthi in OJUS, act as powerful appetizers and stimulants of digestive enzymes. Pippali is a stimulant of digestive enzymes. Shatavari helps to protect stomach mucosa from gastric acid. Bilva and Karnja also acts as gastro-protective. Thus Ojus tablets and syrup is complete digestive aid by virtue of all the properties.