You are what you digest

You are what you digest


Food is the most important source of energy for the human body. You probably know the saying “you are what you eat”, but we should really say “you are what you digest”. Digestion and absorption capacity determine which nutrients your body receives. Even if you think you are eating the healthiest things, if it is not digested and absorbed properly you are not getting the best from your diet.


Improve your digestion

Some people are not hungry at all while others cannot fully taste their food. Or they are never satisfied after eating. When you really enjoy a meal, it helps your body prepare for proper digestion and absorption of the nutrients.

You can improve digestion and absorption capacity by changing the times you eat and by looking closely at when you eat, what you eat and how you eat. This is the first step.

Eat your main meal in the middle of the day, when the digestive fire (agni) is strongest.

Preferably choose fresh, organic foods and avoid leftovers. Fresh food gives you more intelligence and healing power, and certainly more nutrients.

Only eat when you are hungry, when the previous meal has been completely digested, at regular times, take your time and chew slowly, do not let your attention be distracted by reading, working or watching TV, avoid cold drinks that cool down the digestive fire, and eat until your stomach is about three-quarters full.

These are some of the minimum conditions for improving your digestion.


Balance stomach acid in a natural way

  • Eat less dry, spicy and salty foods
  • Drink some cool milk, but not during meals
  • Eat sweet and juicy fruits such as plums and pears
  • Drink as little (or no) alcohol as possible
  • Eat when you are hungry and don't skip meals
  • Get plenty of rest, go to bed before ten o'clock if you can

How do you know if your food is being digested properly?

You should feel satisfied, fulfilled and energized after eating. The stool has a good shape and comes on time and when you wake up you are hungry. If you feel drowsy, tired or in pain after eating, you are not digesting your food properly. Other indications may include constipation, diarrhea, lack of appetite and general lethargy.


Herbs can aid in better digestion

Triphala removes waste products (ama) from the digestive tract and disposes of them. This helps when the waste blocks the digestive tract and gets in the way of the food's movement. When taken with warm water in the evening, Triphala brings more balance to the bio-energies vata, pitta and kapha.

Devavati consists of a combination of herbs that promote the secretion of digestive enzymes and the appetite.

Ginger is known for strengthening digestion in the absence of appetite.



It is not only important that your food is of the best quality, but also that you monitor your digestive capacity to get the best from your diet. Usually the problem is not the food, but your digestion.





The sole purpose of these articles is to provide information about the tradition of ayurveda. This information is not intended for use in the diagnosis, treatment, cure or prevention of any disease. If you have any serious acute or chronic health concern, please consult a trained health professional. If you are seeking the advice of a trained ayurvedic expert, call or email Sri Sri Ayurveda. Check with your doctor before taking herbs, herbal food supplements or using essential oils when pregnant or nursing.