Heat, acidity or stomach discomfort?
Author: Linda Sinden Date Posted:18 February 2020
If you or a loved one have been experiencing heat, or acidity in your midriff or stomach region before or after eating you may wonder what is happening. It can be quite uncomfortable when acidity burns the back of the throat or the heat prickle of increased acidity tickles from the inside of the stomach just below the diaphragm.
Ayurveda directs our attention to an imbalance of Pitta dosha being behind these symptoms and guides us to cool down Patchaka Pitta to help our body restore balance. Our digestive fire is on overburn!
About the doshas
Through the eyes of Ayurvedic the world is seen as a combination of five elements - space, air, fire, water and earth. These five elements combine to create three doshas or organising principles of nature called Vata, Pitta and Kapha. Each of the doshas have specific functions while at the same time regulating thousands of separate functions in the mind and body. Nature requires all three to build and maintain a human body.
- Vata dosha governs movement such as breathing, blood circulation and movement through the gastrointestinal tract.
- Pitta dosha governs metabolism such as the processing of food, air, water, thoughts and feelings.
- Kapha dosha governs structure such as holding cells together and formation of muscle, fat, bone and sinew.
What is Pachaka Pitta
Pachaka Pitta is one of the five subdoshas of Pitta and is located in the stomach and small intestines. It governs
- digestion of food and separating nutrients from waste products
- Regulation of the ‘heat’ or ‘fire’ of digestion, making it fast or slow, efficient or weak.
- Imbalance of Pachaka Pitta is linked to heartburn, ulcers, acid stomach and irregular digestion (either too weak or too fast - hyperactive), foul smells during elimination and inability to properly extract nourishment from the diet.
- It is imbalanced by excessive bitter, sour and spicy foods, alcohol, caffeine or not delayed eating which causes the gastric enzymes to start eating you.
- It is balanced by favouring Pitta Balancing Foods> , drinking Pitta tea and using Pitta spice mixture in your lunch and evening meals.
- In addition to choosing foods to balance the inflamed Pitta dosha it is important to adopt moderation in life, ensuring you eat when hungry and avoid missing meals. Ideally eat at regular intervals and establish a regular routine of bedtime and rising time. Pure food and water are also very important for your liver, gallbladder and intestines. Organic or sprayfree where possible are best. When the weather is hot be sure to drink water and sweet juices regularly.
- As we metabolise all of our experiences it is best to avoid situations that are by nature ‘hot’ or Pitta increasing such as arguments, conflict, intensity, the pressure of deadlines and unrelenting stress. As sometimes it may not seem possible to do this, then adopting Transcendental Meditation to help chill both mind and body for 20minutes twice daily is a wise and helpful tool to add to your toolbox.
Support balance and ease in your digestive system by taking 1 or 2 tablets of Aci Balance after breakfast and evening meals. Aci Balance helps the brain direct the production of acid in a balanced manner helping to avoid a rebound effect.
A Tonic for Pitta
MA 323 is a sweet tasting tonic for Patchaka Pitta. It is traditionally used tp promotes normal body temperature, blood pressure and breathing, to supports strength and assimilation of food. It also helps to soothe an agitated mind and sore tummy. Take 1-2 slightly rounded teaspoons (10-20 grams) with warm milk or water twice daily.
Cooling herbal Pitta tea is a delicious combination of fragrant rose petals and refreshing spices of licorice, cardamom and cinnamon. Taken warm or cool, it is the perfect answer when you're feeling intense or frustrated. It helps cool down your mind, body and emotions.
- Fill a 1.5 - 2L flask with boiling water and 1-2 tea bags. Pour some tea into a cup and let it cool to a comfortable temperature and sip every 30-60 minutes throughout the day.
When feeling a build up of heat in your body take the following drink in place of your evening meal around 6pm. The excess heat will be eliminated through your gastrointestinal tract via your bowel motions. Then continue with the herbal help mentioned above.
- Warm a cup of warm milk with 2-3 teaspoons of Ghee (clarified butter). Take this drink as your evening meal around 5.30-6.00pm.
Wishing you the bliss of digestive ease this summer.