For some, food holds great value because of its taste. For the others, it’s about how nourishing and healing it is for the body. What’s important to remember is that food not only nourishes the body but also the mind. According to Ayurveda, food is viewed as medicine and falls under three broad categories: Sattvik, Rajasik and Tamasik. The first kind includes fresh fruits, vegetables, beans, nuts, milk, herbs and spices that are easy to digest. The second kind is usually spicy and may include a lot of fried food and food that is rich in texture and taste. Finally, there’s also food which is usually stale and largely includes meat, eggs and fish, and it takes a lot out of your body to digest.

The term Sattva means the essence that is subtle and transformative, Rajas means activity whereas Tamas is inertia. If you haven’t noticed already, notice how your body and mind feel before you reach out for a bottle of liquor. It’s exciting and promising, but the next morning is usually not that exhilarating as you nurse a terrible hangover. That idea of something exciting and providing instant gratification (no matter the consequences) is temporary and doesn’t last long. On the other hand, food that causes inertia comes with a sort of dullness throughout. There’s nothing exciting about it in the beginning or in the end. Think of all those people you’ve come across who are always negative even when circumstances aren’t bad. That doubt, ignorance and pessimism can be linked with being extremely unaware. No one likes to be around people who are constantly negative and drain us. People want to be around those who are light, happy and easy to talk to. The higher the level of balance there is in your body, the easier it is to imbibe these good qualities that help you stay focused and centered.

People who follow a pure and balanced diet are known to have a clear mind and are also more spiritually aware. They usually avoid alcohol, caffeine and meat. On the other hand, food that mentally stimulates us also makes us active and gives us the encouragement to push ourselves that extra bit. It’s the sort of food that may lead to aggression, passion and fire. In short, an imbalance of emotions and in some extreme cases, it could also lead to depression. Then, there’s the sort of food that slows us down. Excessive consumption of such food could lead to lethargy and inactivity. This food does more harm than good to the body, mind and soul.

It’s true. We are what we eat. But the good news is that we get to choose who we want to be. Whether we want to be calm and collected, passionate or lazy. And it’s a choice we get to make every single day. So the big question is, who do you plan to be today?