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February 26, 2008

Sweet

Sweet is the taste that should make up the most of your diet. But on the other hand sweet is the taste that many, many people eat too much. So what's the trick...how do you get just the right amount of sweet?

Most foods are predominantly sweet in taste, so it's easy to over indulge. The key is in the source of the sweet taste. Avoid concentrated sweets such as sugar, honey and maple syrup. These should only be taken in moderation because such strong sweet taste numbs your taste buds and weakens your digestion. The main source of sweet in your diet should be whole grains and vegetables.

Sweet, the heaviest taste, is made up of water and earth, making it most useful for Pita and Vata and least useful for Kapha. However because sweets weaken digestive fire it can build mucous and toxins, so care must be taken even for these dosha. Spices such as pepper and cumin can aid digestion. Kapha illnesses such as lethargy, congestion and obesity will all be aggravated by too much sweet taste, which is particularly easy to get from concentrated sweets.

Sweet taste is the most nutritive of tastes, making it very useful after Panch Karma or for convalescence. It builds the tissues and aids growth. But in an anti ama diet sweet is the first taste to go.

Refined sugar is poison. It's hidden in all sorts of processed foods from bread to crackers to muesli bars. Read packets carefully and avoid foods that are too high in refined sugar. Use unrefined, natural sweeteners in your own cooking, such as jaggary or maple syrup according to your dosha.

If you can't taste the natural sweetness of milk or bread than it's time to cut down on your sweet intake. If you eat less sugar your tastebuds will open up the full mouthwatering deliciousness of all six tastes. And balance, after all is the key to health.

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