Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Diet and brahmacharya


High angle view of a pea in a plate with a fork and a table knife [DKI-0086-059]
Brahmacharya is also observed to contain one's sensual desires for food and taste, as well as materialism. Most brahmacharis prescribe to avoiding the consumption of meat, spices and cooked foods, which are said to cultivate the taste buds and pleasure senses of the mind. Gandhi, one of the most known brahmacharis, besides being an adherent of simple living andnonresistance, also devoted himself to creating what he believed to be a perfect diet. The diet, later named the "Gandhi-diet" meant a diet which was environmentally acceptable, based on economical (low-cost) products and healthy (allowing the body to perform at its best capabilities; thus keeping digestion in mind). The diet, on which he worked for 35 years, constantly re-evaluating and improving it for himself, consisted of [3][4] :
  • 1 litre of cow's milk (or goat's? quote needed)
  • 170 g cereals
  • 85 g leafy vegetables
  • 140 g other vegetables
  • 30 g raw vegetables
  • 40 g ghee
  • 60 g butter
  • and 40 g jaggery or sugar
  • fruits according to one's taste and purse
  • 2 sour limes (juice taken with vegetables or in water, cold or hot)
  • salt according to taste
Gandhi also kept his weight low, with a Body Mass Index of 17.7. Today, the Gandhi diet is again becoming more popular, and experts as Dr. P.P. Bose [3] state the diet to be very healthy and to fit perfectly with the (USDA) food-pyramid.[5]
The effect of certain food components in stimulating sexual desire may be attributed to their role in sex hormone synthesis. According to tradition, certain foods such as garlic and onion are said to induce sexual desire. Whole milk and milk products derived from cream (butter, ghee and cheese) are also said to stimulate sexual desire, despite being part of the Gandhi diet.

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