You can easily tell which foods promote sattva because they are fresh, juicy, light, unctuous, nourishing, sweet, and tasty. They give the body energy and nutrients without taking much effort to digest. Foods that are stimulating or exciting (like chili) and foods that are old (like frozen foods or leftovers) are not sattvic.
How you prepare your food can increas or decrease it's sattva. Any food prepared with peace and love with be more sattvic, whilst anything prepared whilst you are angry or stressed will become less sattvic. Organic and seasonal produce gives more sattva and soaking increases sattva in all foods. Foods that are well cooked are more sattvic that foods that are raw or burnt or deep fried.
There are plenty of foods and herbs that promote sattva, including:
- sunflower seeds
- basmati rice
- fresh, ripe fruit
- mung dahl
- himalayan rock salt
Guna do not correlate with dosha, though many people try to find a link. There are foods that are suitable for each dosha which are high in sattva. And again, sattva is not a black and white matter, some foods, like black pepper are highly stimulating and therefore rajasic, but the effect they have on the body can be sattvic because the cleanse and purfy the lungs. Different foods may be sattvic for different people.
If this all sounds a bit complicated, just go back to the very beginning, and choose foods that are fresh, juicy, light, unctuous, nourishing, sweet, and tasty.
To find out your guna and what areas you could work on you can a little quiz here.