Hindus or the yogic philosophy have categorised food in three ways or 3 gunas of yoga which are broadly Tamasic, Rajasic, Sattvic, or at times a mix of them. Some people say it's nothing but a segmentation based on fertilized and unfertilized.
Some say it is generally based only on its gross material content like protein, fats, vitamins, carbohydrate, water, minerals and fiber.
Ayurveda distinguishes these foods based on the total dimension of human existence.
The Wellness Corner experts have elaborated about Tamasic and Rajasic food. Here are relevant findings-
What is Rajasic Food?
Foods that have a stimulating effect on the mind and body, that give motivation and create desires.
According to Ayurveda, it is believed that people who can't stay still or are always moving are more drawn to Rajasic food. This restlessness happens because either they are stuck in the past or think too much about the future.
Rajasic Food Effect on body- They stimulate aggression, passion, fire, imbalance of the emotion, energy, alters the consciousness, and creates depression.
Example of Rajasic - Fish, eggs, and chicken, all whole pulses and dals (not sprouted), hot spices like chilies and pepper, salt, brinjal (eggplant), onion, garlic, radish, tea, coffee, aerated drinks and chocolate etc. It contains more oil and spices compared to satvik food.
Suggested intake- Rajasic foods should not be consumed daily, they should be taken occasionally.
Taste-Rajasic foods are bitter, sour, salty, pungent, hot and dry.
These foods don’t harm you but they don’t benefit you either.
What Is Tamasic Food?
Tamasic foods give us the desire to stop, slow down, and rest. They put you in a phase where you want to do a particular task but something sucks your energy and you no more feel like doing it. For instance- You are willing to wake up early in morning but you don’t because laziness hits.
According to Ayurveda, it is believed that Tamasic food slows down mind functionality. An individual consuming Tamasic food is likely to be lazy . This generates emotions like insecurity, jealousy and will regularly have mood swings. A Tamasic person loses calmness and may have longer sleeping cycles than usual.
Tamasic Food Effect on body- Tamasic foods have a dulling effect on the mind, lower our resistance to disease, cloud the mind and promote negative emotions. They block the flow of energy and produce harmful toxins.
Suggested intake- If you wish to stay light, these foods should be limited.
Example- Fast food, fried foods, frozen and canned foods, microwaved foods, processed foods, stale food, alcohol, drugs, chemicals, mushrooms, margarine, red meat, beef, sausages, bacon, and ham.
These foods are considered to be highly harmful to the body, mind, and soul.