Ayurvedic Diet

Ayurvedic Diet & Digestion Made Easy

Symptoms | Diet | Diet | Alcohol
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Alcohol Ayurvedic Perspectives


Written by John Immel, Asheville, NC
Alcohol is also a medicine when used in the right dose. Alcohol is recommended in Ayurveda during winter months as a remedy to blood stagnation. Two (2) tablespoons of wine represent a daily medicinal dose of alcohol during the month of January and February.

Alcohol can be grouped into several categories including beer which is heavy, wine which is light, and hard liquor which is highly concentrated.

Alcohol's Effects on the Body

However, Alcohol is a toxin and one should avoid consuming more than one glass of alcohol on an evening, and more than two glasses per week. It is hot, sharp, and penetrating. It irritates the lining of the digestive tract. Alcohol stimulates the liver and causes it to release bile, exacerbating any condition of liver deficiency. Since the liver is responsible for detoxification of all blood, it may become overwhelmed trying to metabolize more than a little alcohol. This overtaxing of the liver can result in bloodshot eyes, yellow-tinged sclera, red skin, body odor, and angry outbursts.

A person with hepatitis (inflammation of the liver) may crave alcohol to stimulate their liver. For this reason, hepatitis actually increases the risk of alcoholism. Ayurveda has many herbs which can safely help the liver without the user of alcohol.

Alcohol's heating effect is why the proverbial St. Bernard dogs would carry a bit of whiskey to revive a lost hiker in Alps. Initially, the heat of alcohol dilate blood vessels and help circulation. The hot blood circulates to the surface of your skin, possibly aggravating hives or heat related conditions, giving one a red neck.

The hot blood also explains alcohol's extroverted nature. The increase of heat in the blood makes one exuberant and stimulates the heart. The heart, which is a naturally affectionate and social organ, predisposes one to fun. When imbalanced, the exuberance can lead to risky social activities under the influence of alcohol.

Alcohol is a hot & sugary depressant. A person may become addicted to the relaxing effects, as well as the spike in blood sugar. For this reason, recovering alcoholics often crave sweets and candy. Professionals often drink coffee in the morning to wake up, and alcohol in the evening to wind down, putting their body on a dangerous roller coaster ride.

Remedies & Alternatives

There are many alternatives to drinking alcohol in social situations. To reduce consumption, drink slowly and on a full stomach. Stay hydrated. Avoid mixing different types of alcohols in a single evening.

To dilute the alcohol concentration, mix your drink with fun fruit juices such as granita, cranberry juice, lemon juice, or seltzer water. Bitters and sours added to alcoholic drinks can help your liver process the alcohol.

Food such as strawberries that are both sour, sweet, high in beta carotene and antioxidants can help your body deal with alcohol toxicity and reduce the effects of a hangover. Coconut water and other cool, soothing ingredients can help restore an inflamed gut. Coconut oil can help feed your liver, which may be exhausted.

Aggravated Doshas & Qualities

Imbalance Accumulates

Improper food and lifestyle causes balances to accumulate. Ayurveda shows you exactly which doshas and qualities will accumulate in your body. Once these doshas and qualities accumulate too much, they will begin to cause disease. You can reduce an imbalanced dosha or quality by removing things that aggravate it from your diet and lifestyle.

'Alcohol' is likely to aggravate the following doshas and qualities.If you have a systemic imbalance of one of these doshas or qualities, Ayurveda would generally recommend removing, substitute or lessen the frequency of Alcohol.

Pitta aggravatingDigestive Effects Help

Key: V = Vata, P = Pitta, K = Kapha. A slash through a dosha means it an aggravated dosha. To learn more about the symbols above, click on them.

Correct Imbalance

Food and lifestyle habite with the following effects may reduce imbalances associated with 'Alcohol'.
About Pharmacological Effects
The list of actions below have not be approved by the FDA and should not be used to treat a medical condition.

Specialty Formulas by Joyful Belly

Please review these herbs & products below to determine which ones might be helpful for Alcohol.
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Ayurvedic Herbs & Natural Products for Alcohol

Please review these herbs & products below to determine which ones might be helpful for Alcohol.

Vata pacifyingPitta pacifyingKapha pacifying
Ayurveda's most popular herb detoxifies while it rejuvenates! Especially useful for inflammation of the GI tract.

Blood Cleanse
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Enjoy clear, healthy skin, and a clear mind with Blood Cleanse. This detoxifying, anti-inflammatory formula cleanses & purifies the blood while easing liver toxicity.

Bitter Ghee - Tikta Ghrta (9 fl oz)
Vata aggravatingPitta pacifyingKapha pacifying
A classic formula for Pitta Kapha disorders, irritability, liver congestion, and gall baldder stagnation.

Vata pacifyingPitta pacifyingKapha pacifying
Hypoallergenic & liver restorative.

Milk Thistle Tincture
Vata pacifyingPitta aggravatingKapha aggravating
Clean your liver with Milk Thistle. If you have a history of liver disorders, or took pharmaceuticals in the past, Milk Thistle will detoxify your liver so that your skin and mind are clear. Relieves symptoms of toxicity like itchy, oily skin and foul s

About the Author

John Immel, the founder of Joyful Belly, teaches people how to have a healthy diet and lifestyle with Ayurveda. His approach to Ayurveda exudes a certain ease, which many find enjoyable and insightful. His online course Balance Your Ayurvedic Diet in a Week provides tools for gracefully healing with Ayurveda to thousands. John also directs Joyful Belly's School of Ayurveda , which specializes in digestive tract pathology & Ayurvedic nutrition. John and his wife Natalie recently published Explore Your Hunger: A Guide to Hunger, Appetite & Food.

John's interest in Ayurveda and digestive tract pathology was inspired by a complex digestive disorder acquired from years of international travel, including his public service work in South Asia. John's commitment to the detailed study of digestive disorders reflects his zeal to get down to the roots of the problem. His hope and belief in the capacity of each & every client to improve their quality of life is nothing short of a personal passion. John's creativity in the kitchen and delight in cooking for others comes from his family oriented upbringing. In addition to his certification in Ayurveda, John holds a bachelor's degree in mathematics from Harvard University.

John enjoys sharing Ayurveda within the context of his Catholic roots, and finds Ayurveda gives him an opportunity to participate in the healing mission of the Church. Jesus expressed God's love by feeding and healing the sick. That kindness is the fundamental ministry of Ayurveda as well.

Comments & Personal Experiences

What are some of the reasons why you include 'alcohol' in your life? Is there something you'd like to know about 'alcohol'?

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my son has Ulcerative Colitis and he does drink beer modarate amount I am worried please guide

- De, North potomac, 11-02-12 (Reply)

What is Joyful Belly?

Browse recipes and hundreds of other ingredients on this extensive educational website. Joyful Belly helps people confidently choose food that restores their healthy glow, using the ancient technique of Ayurveda. Our extensive collection of online recipes, ingredients, and articles makes health easy. To get started, take the free dosha quiz to find your Ayurvedic body type.

What is Ayurveda?

Learn about Ayurveda from the author of this article and founder of Joyful Belly,
John Immel.

* These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. The information and products on this website are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease.
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