You know what a yoga studio, yoga mat, and yoga pants are, but do you know what a yoga diet is? If you’re looking for a bulleted list with eat-this and not-that, then this blog might be a bit of a disappointment. A yoga diet is more an idea than a list. Remember, the overarching purpose of yoga is to better oneself physically, mentally, and spiritually. It’s important to remember that yoga isn’t just a “class” you attend each week at a studio. It’s more than that. It’s a way of life. It’s a school of thought called the “Yoga school of Hinduism.”
With this in mind, it helps us begin to answer the question of what a yoga diet is. The answer is: whatever enables you to fulfill the quest to find utter transcendence of the mind.
Taking ownership of your yoga journey, means taking responsibility for everything associated with your body, including what you eat. You’ve heard the phrase, “You are what you eat.” Well, in yoga, we take that a step further and say, “You are what you think.” Your mind is empowered, and its apex-of-functionality is aided when proper nutrition is adhered to. Regularly hitting the yoga studio while periodically eating a diet of garbage food is incredibly counterproductive and irresponsible, to say the least. Yoga requires ALL of you. Not just your money for a studio membership.
Though I don’t have a grocery list for a yoga diet, I do have a list of what I believe are the TWO basic principles of a yoga diet:
1.Consume with intent
Everything that enters the body, whether food, water, or thought, should only enter if allowed to. Don’t be a passive consumer of food. Be an intentional consumer of food. Know what you’re eating. Practice self-discipline by meal-planning, avoiding fast-food, and staying hydrated to curb hunger.
I plan every meal for every day. This planning weekly on a Saturday morning and informs my shopping later that evening.
2. Practice self-control
When fully-embraced, yoga can unlock the door for self-control in a way unrivaled by any other practice, at least of which I’m aware. While many would see self-control as a form of limitation or bondage, it is liberating and empowering.
I shop at a store that allows me to shop online and pick up my groceries at the curb. This eliminates the temptation to throw unplanned items into my shopping cart!
If I go out to eat, it is always with friends, and I am cautious to read over the ingredients for items I may order.
A yoga diet should be a natural outcropping of your yoga lifestyle. Don’t compartmentalize your yoga life.
Embrace it as a whole. Love it with your soul . Share it as a goal!