I didn’t come to Ayurveda because it was sexy or cool or even because I was interested in wellness. I came to it because I have to.
In this episode, I share my WHY. Why I’m doing this work and why I wrote Eat Feel Fresh: A Contemporary Ayurvedic Plant-Based Cookbook.
I hope this episode inspires you to make your mess, your message.
It was gifted to you for that very reason.
Use code “sahara” on Silver Fern products.
Let’s take the discussion further in the Mind-Body Balancers FB group: www.facebook.com/groups/1213662491998309/
Discover Your Dosha (Mind-Body Type) with my free quiz: iamsahararose.com
Intro + Outro Music: Silent Ganges by Maneesh de Moor Pre-order my new book Eat Feel Fresh: A Contemporary Plant-Based Ayurvedic Cookbook: eatfeelfresh.com/book/ and receive a signed book plate, inspirational card and 10 bonus recipes
Join my Awaken Your Powers Masterclass to become a leader in the new paradigm with Shaman Durek: www.iamsahararose.com/awaken-your-powers
Episode 117 – How Ayurveda Saved My Life with Sahara Rose
By Sahara Rose
Namaste. It’s Sahara Rose, and welcome back to the “Highest Self” podcast. A place where we discuss what makes you your soul’s highest evolvement. This episode is brought to you by Silver Fern Probiotic. It is so important that we have healthy gut bacteria because our serotonin, the happy neurotransmitter originates from a gastrointestinal tract. So when there are imbalances in the gut, that can lead to brain fog, depression, mood swings, and even anxiety. Silver Fern Probiotic helps restore the growth of good microbes in your flora so you are able to fight off anxiety and depression, as well as IBS, Crohn’s, colitis, and candida.
You can head over to silverfernbrand.com and use the code “sahara” for 15% off your order. And my favorite part of Silver Fern is it’s able to withstand the harsh climate of your gut, which is hot and acidic, unlike other very sensitive, only refrigerated probiotics, which are not able to withstand that temperature in there. So listen to episode 110, I interview the founder, Charity Lighten, she really educates us on digestive health. And check out silverfernbrand.com with coupon code “sahara.”
I am so excited to finally be sharing with you my brand new cookbook, “Eat Feel Fresh,” which I’ve been talking about for like a year, guys, so thank you for bearing with me. But this book is now in my hands, and I’m about to jump out of the window of excitement right now because this is a lot of work. So in this episode I want to share with you the book-writing journey, the behind the scenes of how this book came together, why this book came together, a bit of the story behind how this journey even started—in case you don’t know—and what to expect from this book.
So I started off as a food blogger. I started in 2011, I think, and I created a blog called “Eat Feel Fresh,” and it was my place where I would share my recipes, and you know, eventually my nutrition tips, and eventually got into some positive psychology. And I got really into raw veganism, so I shared a lot of that, and it was just my outlet. It was never something I imagined doing as a career. In fact, I wanted to become an international human rights lawyer. That’s what I was going to school for. So this was just something that I did for fun.
So “Eat Feel Fresh” started to grow, it started to get more and more readers the more active I was, and I started to put in a lot of time into learning about blogging, and web design, and SEO, and commenting on other people’s blogs, and really just building that up. And before I knew it, I would be in class, not paying attention so I could learn about blogs, and marketing, and all of the things related to my “Eat Feel Fresh” website.
And eventually, when I graduated from college I took a job at an ad agency and I absolutely hated it. Hated working for someone else, being in a cubicle, and really having no purpose behind what I did. But my blog was not making any money, it was costing me money cause I would make all these recipes and spend a lot of time taking pictures of them. But it wasn’t going anywhere, but I knew this was my only chance to give it a full shot.
So I started blogging more regularly, and my blog shifted from a raw vegan blog to more of a healing blog because I was experiencing my own health issues, which I dive into in this book. So I don’t want to get too into that journey, and you guys may have heard it on episode two of how I became my highest self and wrote “Idiot’s Guide to Ayurveda.” But long story short, I was going through a lot of health problems. And though I was a health blogger teaching other people how to be healthy, I had my own issues.
Can any of you guys relate to being the one, helping everyone else with their health problems, their diet, their spirituality. But having your own issues that you feel a little bit embarrassed about. So I think that that’s actually what’s holding a lot of us back from having a career in the health, wellness, and spiritual space because we feel like we have to be perfect before we’re able to help others. And I’m here to share with you that that’s not true because in fact, your health journey is what makes you unique, and it’s what makes you relatable, and you’re not going to study something in-depth unless you desperately need it to heal yourself.
So why I know so much about Ayurveda is not because I thought it was cool, or trendy, or you know, a cool word, but because I was desperate to heal myself when my body was shutting down. And I was eating all the right foods—salads, smoothies, kale chips. I mean I was really one of those people who’d go out of their way to make sure everything was organic, and clean, et cetera. But my body was not responding correctly. I started off with my digestion, every time I ate I would feel such bad stomach aches. I mean I’m talking stomach aches that I would be curling on the couch after a meal just in so much pain trying to breathe through it, and have no idea what the cause was. How many of you guys can relate to that?
So I would try to be stricter on my diet, try to eliminate more things, I would try different elimination diets, I would keep a food journal. Eventually none of that worked either so I went to different doctors, I went to gastroenterologists and my hormones weren’t working either. I wasn’t getting my period, I had gotten off birth control, my period hadn’t come back—one year, two years no period. So I went to an endocrinologist, a hormone doctor, and she said, “Just get back on birth control. It’ll give you a period.” And I said, “Well, if I’m not getting my period doesn’t that mean I’m not fertile?” She’s like, “Oh honey, you can get IVF when we get to that point.”
So I intuitively knew that something was deeply wrong with me. I’m not able to digest food, I’m not getting my period, I’m 21 years old, and I’m already infertile. And on top of that, I had all these other issues I had never dealt with before. So for example, every time I would exercise, dance, I would end up injuring something—my hip, my wrist, my shoulder, my lower back, my ankles, everything was always cracking, always getting injured. I would get very light-heated, I remember I would be at the gym doing cardio, just a light cardio on the elliptical, and get so dizzy that I would just lie down until I was able to hold myself back together. Have any of you guys experienced that before?
And I had really low blood sugar, and even though I would eat all these fruits, and healthy foods, suddenly I would just get so cold and be shivering, and no amount of sweaters, or socks, or blankets could warm me up. This was like a level of to the bones cold that I just couldn’t sleep. And I would stay up all night, and not only because I was cold, but because I had all these thoughts, and oh my god, what am I going to do after college? I don’t have a job. I don’t know what I’m doing. I don’t even want to work international human rights, I don’t want to work in a corporate office. If I don’t have another job how am I gonna make money? How is this gonna happen? Oh my god, I’m a loser, I’m a failure, blah, blah, blah. How many of you guys can relate to that?
But someone asked me about my mind. Oh no, my mind is great. I mean I blog about positive psychology, I really know what I’m talking about. Because I didn’t think that that was anxiety, I thought that that was just normal. I thought people just had a lot of thoughts, you know. How do you know what’s normal and not when you’ve only lived in your own mind? And my dreams, they would be like me getting chased by pirates, someone breaking into my house, I’d have to run away. Me always being chased, always fleeing away from something. And again, I thought this is just like what my dreams are, I didn’t really look into them.
So all of these issues were happening—mind, body, spirit, bones, blood, but I didn’t think they were connected. No doctor had ever told me they were connected. I mean, a doctor, a gastroenterologist does not ask what kind of dreams you have. And an endocrinologist does not ask you how you sleep. And a therapist doesn’t ask you how your digestion is. These are all different people in the Western world. So I never put together the pieces. I thought that these are just my problems that I have to deal with.
So I was in India not to study Ayurveda, but because I was teaching health and sanitation in the slums of Delhi, still a raw vegan. And I had tried everything, I had gotten super, super sick, and I decided I’m just gonna try going to an Ayurvedic doctor. I had heard about Ayurveda through Institute for Integrative Nutrition, IIN. I was doing a health coaching program then, which I totally recommend. If anyone’s interested, I can get you a $1,500 of discount—side note, e-mail me [email protected] So IIN really taught me what Ayurveda was for the first time. And I thought it was cool, like it was this health system that you take a quiz, it has to do with your personality, and I’ve always loved personality quizzes, so I thought Ayurveda was interesting, but I never really thought it was actually going to heal me or anyone. I actually thought it was sort of like some weird astrological thing.
But I figured, you know, I’m in India, and this is going to be an interesting cultural experience for me. So I went to an Ayurvedic doctor that I just found online, and she was a jubilant woman wearing a red sari, and I remember looking at the walls of this office, and there were posters of chakras, and four-armed deities holding, you know, all these different lotuses, and a gong, and these different things with these arms. I mean it was a far cry from the super sanitary doctor’s offices in Boston where I had to spent most of the year trying to figure out what was wrong with me. At this point I was willing to try everything.
So she told me that the moment she saw me that I have a lot of vata, and she instantly said “betee,” which means daughter. She’s like, “You too pretty to never have baby.” And she knew without me telling her anything that my body had shut off its hormones. And at that point my body had gone into perimenopause, which is when your body, basically, goes into menopause when it’s not supposed to. I was 21, shouldn’t have been going through menopause for like 50 years from then.
So I’m looking at her like how did she know that? I didn’t even write that down because my intention to go to her was just to heal for my digestion. I never even thought about bringing that up because I thought that my period was just gone because of the pill, and it was just going to come back eventually. But I didn’t think it was related to this kind of stuff. So she looks at me and she takes my pulse, and she looks at my tongue, which we learned all about in episode 104, Ayurvedic tongue reading, so I highly recommend after this episode go look at your tongue and listen to that episode too.
And she’s like, “Oh, well a lot of vata I see. You must have trouble sleeping, staying up at night thinking, you think too much.” I’m like, “Okay, maybe she noticed the bags under my eyes.” And she’s like, “Your joints are always cracking—crack, crack, crack. Oh, you’re too young to have back pain too.” I’m like, “Mm, can she see that my posture’s off? I’m like trying to sit up straighter.” And she takes my pulse and she says, “Oh, very, very agni,” which I later learned means digestive fire. And she tells me, “Oh, agni very, very low, not digesting food properly, yaad.” Which “yaad” is like “hey, guy.” My Indian accent cracks me up.
And she says, “Oh, body not taking in nutrients, though you are eating, body malnourished.” And I was thinking, “Malnourished? No, no, no, no. I eat so much.” I’m like that person that eats all day. I’m always snacking, my big smoothies, my big salads, this, that. So I’m definitely not malnourished. I mean I had brought a suitcase of like raw vegan snacks to India. And she says, “Agni’s so low, body shutting down, no more period, very, very bad. You are too young for this.” And yeah, it was true, I was too young for this to be happening. And at first I didn’t pay attention to my period’s absence. I mean what girl wants her period? But two years without it is a really long time, and it was obviously a sign that something was massively off.
So I found out that I had something called a vata imbalance, an air imbalance, which means you have excess air in your body. So you have cold body temperature, dry skin, bloating, gas, constipation, no period, weak muscles, cracking, and easily broken joints, insomnia, anxiety, worrying too much, trouble sleeping. And I find out that if I don’t put an end to this vata imbalance it will later cycle into osteoporosis and Alzheimer’s. So I just found out that my super healthy clean diet was actually gonna give me Alzheimer’s and osteoporosis, and I’m training to become a health coach, and I’m a food blogger, and my whole life is dedicated to health, and all I talk about is eating kale. So how can this be happening?
So I tell her, “No, no, no, there has to be a misunderstanding. You see, I eat a lot of really healthy food. I eat big leafy green salads, and green smoothies with spirulina, and acai bowls, and flax crackers, and nut cheese, and I list like everything that I eat in the U.S.” She’s like, “Oh, acha, well that’s why you have so much vata and no more cold, raw, dry foods, only cooked foods—mungdal, white basmati rice, and lots of ghee.” I’m like, “Mm, yeah, you see, I’m a raw vegan, so we don’t really eat any of those foods, but maybe I can just take some supplements instead? Has anyone ever thought that before?” She’s like, “No, betee, this is Ayurveda way.” By the way, in India they say “Vs” like “Ws,” so they say “Ayurweda,” it’s funny.
So I kind of leave the office like, “Well this isn’t gonna work out,” and I have this list of dos and don’ts in my hands, and all of my favorite foods are the don’ts, and all of the heavy foods I stopped eating years ago to lose weight because I was actually overweight as a child and became a raw vegan to lose weight were the foods that I should eat. So I thought if I ever followed an Ayurvedic diet, I would probably gain 50 pounds, and you know, go back to the 12-year-old me that went into all of this in the first place.
So I kind of stopped thinking about Ayurveda, and I went on to try every diet under the sun. You know, I tried the powers of Google to heal myself. Have any of you guys ever tried to heal yourselves with Google before? Yeah, it’s a little bit of a confusing and contradicting doctor that, you know, you could search for anything. I could search why coffee is good for me, why coffee is bad for me. Why chocolate’s good for me, why chocolate’s bad for me. Eat beans, don’t eat beans, eat meat, don’t eat meat. And they all have scientific evidence behind them, they all have some smiling, thriving person who’s sharing this diet and all of it is contradicting each other.
So that year was just a blur of these dietary experiments. I went paleo, I went keto, I went macrobiotic, I did the lod-FODMAP diet, gluten-free, grain-free, soy-free, wheat-free—everything in between. I had flings with the candida diet, the sibo diet, the GAPS diet, and every other acronym you can imagine. I went to every doctor, I did every blood test and somehow managed not to faint, yet I still couldn’t find out an answer to my issues. Have you ever tried every taste and gone to every doctor and tried every diet and still not found an answer for it? Yeah, a lot of us have.
So I did find out that she was right, that my hormones weren’t working. In fact, my estrogen and testosterone levels were both at zero, so I just didn’t have any hormones in my body essentially, but still no reason why. So the gastroenterologist says I had IBS, irritable bowel syndrome. And the endocrinologist said I had hypothalamic amenorrhea, which is basically you’re not getting your period, and we have no idea why, and it’s something that’s in your brain.
But not that your brain has something wrong with it, but that your brain thinks you’re not healthy or safe enough to reproduce, so it shuts off its period. So ladies, if you’re not getting your period, it’s been more than three months, there’s no reason why, look up hypothalamic amenorrhea. But again, they told me it wasn’t really that big of a deal, and you know, IBS medication, birth control, antidepressants they even gave me for my digestion. Can you imagine? They wanted to give me antidepressants because of my digestive issues, as if that would solve it.
But I didn’t want that quick fix, and I kept searching, kept searching, and not finding. So eventually I circled back to Ayurveda really just out of desperation, and realizing I mean, I totally fit this category, I am a vata, textbook level. Everything it says vata imbalance, I got going on, but the suggestions, I just can’t do them, it doesn’t make sense to me why does one only have to eat heavily cooked Indian food to be healthy? I mean there are places around the world with blue zones, countries with the longest life expectancies in Costa Rica, in Okinawa, Japan, and in Europe, all over the world and they’re not eating only Indian food.
So how can I heal this vata imbalance without only eating mung beans, white rice, and ghee? And I tried it, I tried eating it, and I would always just feel heavy, and just nauseous. I even signed up for a panchakarma at the world’s oldest panchakarma center in South India, and I just couldn’t eat because in the morning they would give me a cup of ghee, which is clarified butter, with all these herbs to drink, and I would drink it and feel so, so, so nauseous for the rest of the day that I couldn’t eat food.
So I’m like this just feels like torture to me, but everything that Ayurveda’s saying, this connection between the mind and body makes sense. There has to be a way that I can follow these suggestions, but not only eat Indian food that was available 5,000 years ago. So I decided that I would start learning about Ayurveda. So I started off by signing up for an Ayurvedic nutrition and cooking school program. And from there I started to just study one-on-one with the doctors there, and I would ask them so many questions. Oh my god, I was like probably the most annoying person they’ve ever met, but I wanted to know the reasoning behind everything. Why is that suggested? Well in sports nutrition they—cause I had also studied sports nutrition and become a sports nutritionist too.
So a lot of the things were contradicting, and I just wanted to understand the reasoning why. But also a lot of the things weren’t lining up. Ayurveda says the mind-body connection we see serotonin is 70% stored in the gut. We can see that there are differences between individuals, and you know, when I read about the doshas I’m seeing this is exactly, you know, pitta’s so my dad, kapha it’s so my cousin, vata’s so me. So I’m seeing these are real archetypes, these things are connected, this makes sense. But how can we bring the science to show that?
So I became obsessed with researching Ayurveda and researching modern nutritional science and bringing them together. And I started to experiment in the kitchen, a place that I know best, and I would make my own plant-based, and gluten-free, and more alkalizing versions of Ayurvedic recipes. So I’d use that vata managed energy to get creative in the kitchen. So instead of a wheat bread, I would make a bread with vitamin-rich almond flour. Instead of rice I would use quinoa, or cauliflower rice. Instead of ghee because I wanted to keep totally plant-based I would use a plant-based sesame oil, coconut oil, avocado oil. Instead of cane sugar, which is in a lot of Indian Ayurvedic food and in a lot of their herbs as well.
Like if you get amla, for example, which is a dried fruit that’s normally very bitter and it’s good for losing weight. Well if you buy Ayurvedic amla like the supplements, it’s covered in cane sugar or jaggery, jaggery is raw cane sugar. Instead of dairy products I really wanted to keep it plant-based, and I dove into why are dairy products are so used in Ayurvedic cuisine. I mean they use ghee for everything, and there’s a lot of milk, they recommend drinking a warm glass of milk at night, and there’s a lot of heavy cream in a lot of Indian foods, and dairy’s just a very big part of Indian culture.
But the dairy that we have today is very different from the dairy that they had in ancient India 5,000 years ago, let alone even 100 years ago, or even 50 years ago. So back in ancient India cows were revered, they were treated as gods. Lord Shiva was a cow herder, so the cows were seen as an extension of him and divine. And these cows were treated just as beautifully and with respect like humans, and they were given great food, and they had grassy pastures to eat from, and everything was very clean, there wasn’t plastic and trash on the ground. So the milk from these cows was holy because it was very, very pure.
And in Northern India, which is where Ayurveda actually comes from, a lot of people think it comes from South India, it actually traveled down south to South India when the British rule seized India because the British made Ayurveda illegal. So Ayurveda traveled underground to South India, specifically to Kerala because that’s where it could remain safe. But it did originate in Northern India in the Indus River Valley, which I talk about in chapter one of “Idiot’s Guide to Ayurveda,” if you’re interested in that.
So back in ancient India in Northern India they did not have avocadoes, they didn’t really have coconut oil. There is coconut oil in South India, not in North India. They were using ghee as their way of cooking as for everything because it was easily available, there were cows everywhere, cows were revered, they were seen as holy, and everything that came out of them, like their milk was holy too. So of course you’re going to use their ghee, their cheese, their curd, their everything.
But today, the dairy industry is very, very different in the U.S. and in India. And cows are pumped up with hormones, and they’re put in the most inhumane conditions. I mean if you see what dairy farms look like you would not want to drink anything that comes out of these cows. I mean they’re seriously abused, they live in unsanitary conditions, and they’re pumped with antibiotics so they don’t get sick because that’s how unsanitary these conditions are. And you know, we are what we eat, and we are what is injected into us—as are cows.
So if these are cows are fed corn, and you know, chemical-filled grass, then we are actually ingesting that. So we are ingesting all of this GMO corn that these cows are fed. And in India, a lot of the cows are herding on the streets because it is illegal to kill cows, but what ends up happening is they use them to take dairy from them and then they release them on the streets to die. So you see cows all over India, but no one’s feeding them, no one’s taking care of them, they just eat the trash off the floor, which is filled with plastic, and waste, and toxins, and human waste as well, and these cows are malnourished and very, very sick.
So why would we ingest the milk coming from sick, hormone-filled, antibiotic-filled, mistreated cows? Ayurveda says we take the energy of all that we eat so these cows are filled with sadness, with fear, with anger. This is the same reason why Ayurveda says we should not eat cows. Because if we are eating a cow that was killed, this cow felt fear, and anger at the moment of its death, and we take on those qualities. Just like we can see now that the adrenaline that moves through a cow’s body at the moment of its slaughter ends up in its bloodstream in its meat, and we actually ingest this adrenaline.
And on top of that we are constantly breathing in our own sweat, and our sweat is comprised of the food particles that we eat. So we are actually then breathing in this adrenaline that we have ingested through the cow through our sweat pores, and then that continues and perpetuates the cycle. So this is why Ayurveda says do not eat a cow, but we now have the same issue with its milk because these cows are not treated correctly. So yes, if you live in a place where cows are treated great, you have your own neighborhood cow, you sing to it and it’s really happy, eats great food, you’re milking it itself, or your neighbor is, go for it, and if it’s raw dairy, not pasteurized, guys. The moment any sort of milk product is pasteurized it is no longer digestible by the human body. So if you’re not eating raw organic dairy that is locally and ethically sourced, you should not be having dairy. And I’d rather just not have dairy because with raw dairy there are risks and it’s illegal in many states by the way because of potential food-borne related illness, et cetera. But you could if you live in Wisconsin, a place that has a lot of that.
So why don’t we just not have dairy, guys. That’s a really easy solution, there’s so many plant-based oils out there, sesame oil, coconut oil, avocado oil, mustard seed oil. And I’m not talking about vegetable oil, you don’t want to have canola oil, vegetable oil. These are very hydrogenated, Omega-6 rich—we don’t want Omega-6, we want Omega-3—Omega-6 rich oils that actually are not really comprised of vegetables. Canola oil is something called rapeseed oil, not to be confused with grapeseed oil, rapeseed oil, which is actually completely chemically derived. It’s also heated at very, very high levels, and it is a potential carcinogen. So we don’t want to be having canola oil and vegetable oil, we want to be having real plant oils.
So that’s an easy solution for ghee. You know, we have so many great solutions to cheese. There are nut cheeses you can make, I have a few in the book, like a goat cheese, and a feta cheese, that don’t require any fermentation, you don’t need to buy a probiotic and do that whole thing. I went to raw vegan culinary school, I know how to ferment truffle cheeses out of nuts if I want, but it takes time. But these recipes are something you can just blend and takes two seconds.
And instead of milk we have flax milk, almond milk, coconut milk, rice milk. You can make your own, you can make your own almond milk, you can make your own coconut milk with just blending coconut shreds with water, cashew milk, whatever it is that you like you can make a milk out of it. So let’s just take dairy out of the equation, we don’t have to worry about it.
So I created this book. As the book I wish I had it is plant-based, it is modern, it is alkaline. So when I say alkaline, you know, 5,000 years ago, or even 100 years ago, people weren’t exposed to as much pollution as we are today. People didn’t sit down all day, they didn’t live in big cities, they didn’t drive cars everywhere. They weren’t pumped up with vaccines the moment they were born, they didn’t have all of these health problems that we are facing today because of the GMOs, and the low trace minerals, and the soil, and all the other issues that we are fortunate enough to have today, and we also have great things going on today too.
So we need to focus on more alkalizing foods whereas in ancient India, or even still today if you live in a village in India and you’re working on a farm all day long, yes, just having some rice and some ghee to like put some calories on you would be a great idea. Because you’re probably malnourished, and it’s probably a struggle for you to even keep some weight on. But if you’re sitting at a desk all day, and your only exercise is the like 30-minute Pilates class you go to, or the Saturday yoga class, you don’t need to load up on the rice and the ghee, yearning for calories here. In fact, you probably are trying to decrease the amount of calories that you’re eating. This book doesn’t count calories, but the heaviness of the food.
So we want more light foods, we want more foods that are going to stimulate us because we live such seated lifestyles, and we are so overly exposed to toxins and pollutants. So we need to take an extra effort to include more alkalizing foods. So alkalizing foods are foods like lots of vegetables and fruits, really, that’s what alkalizing foods are; things that can counterbalance our acidic Ph. You know, when they say 80% to 90% of Americans have acidic Ph levels. So we want to eat foods that can help decrease the acidity because scientists have found that cancer can only thrive in an acidic environment, and the body handles excess acidity by producing fat cells. So if you’re eating a lot of acidic-forming foods—meats, wheat, dairy, processed foods, sugar, et cetera—not only does it increase your risk of cancer, but it actually will cause your body to produce fat cells regardless of how many calories you’re eating. So this is about the quality of the foods, guys, not about the calories, it’s about the qualities.
So alkalizing foods are light for the body, they’re detoxifying, they will help you release all of the garvisha, pollutants that is stuck in our datus, our tissues, causing ama, toxins. So we talk about these Ayurvedic terms, but we see what is going on with this population today because our population today is very different from the Indian population today. It’s very different from the Indian population 5,000 years ago. It’s different from the American population 5,000 years ago. Our population is unique to right now, and it’s ever-changing. I mean even from right now to the ‘70s we can see differences in people’s health.
So we need to upgrade it, and we need to update it, and we need to make it work for today’s people while still being based off of the ancient age old tried and true guidelines. And that’s how I created this book, it creates the best of both worlds, and it truly is part of my dharma to bring this wisdom out to you guys. And I’m so fortunate again to have Dr. Deepak Chopra write the foreword of this book, a very, very kind foreword. And I have quotes all around the book from other inspirations of mine—Dr. Suhas Kshirsagar, who’s been on this podcast, Dr. Douillard, who’s been on this podcast, we’ve got Dr. Vasant Lad, Dr. Frawley.
And I hope that really when you read this book it is like re-learning a language that your soul once spoke for thousands of lifetimes. Because that’s what Ayurveda feels like for me, and the holistic view of Ayurveda is more vital now than ever before. Because so many of us have grown sick and tired of jumping from diet to diet, looking for the answer to our health when it already exists inside of us so all it takes is tuning in and listening.
I invite you to pre-order your copy of “Eat Feel Fresh.” You can find it on Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Target, Wal-Mart, wherever books are sold. And as a special gift for pre-ordering the book, I am going to mail you the first thousand buyers a signed bookplate that I am going to personally sign and mail out to you with an inspirational card. As well as e-mail you ten bonus recipes that are not in this book but are still comprised of my alkaline Ayurveda approach. I’m also going to have other offers available for people who pre-order three copies of the book, five copies of the book, et cetera. You’ll be able to see them over on eatfeelfresh.com. And I’m going to be on a book tour in Los Angeles, in New York, in Miami, D.C., San Francisco. And if you have other cities that you think you’d have a great community that would want to come out, hit me up, e-mail me [email protected], and I’d love to come share the book with you.
And most importantly, I want this book to be an entryway for your spiritual journey. Because it’s not about having a six-pack, it’s not about having glowing skin, it’s not about any of these physical things. It’s something so much deeper than that. Because when you change the foods you eat you change the very fabric of your being. And when you start to eat differently, you start to think differently, you start to feel differently, you start to treat people differently. And the very framework of your life expands, and evolves, and suddenly you become this more energetic, vibrant, and radiant version of yourself, which is really the you that you truly have been all along.
So for me, health is not the end goal. The point of this book is not so you can get a gold star that says, “Oh my god, you ate all organic today. Gold star for you.” No. Health is not the end goal, but rather it is the means to the end. It is the oil that you put into your car. You know, if you put poor quality oil in your car, well guess what, your car’s gonna go, go, go, and it’s gonna stop in the middle of the highway. You’re gonna wish you treated your car better.
When you put high quality oil in your car then you don’t have to think about the oil anymore. You can just drive your car. If you’ve ever been sick before, you know that the only thing that you can think about is what? Getting better. And suddenly those dreams and everything that you want become stored no the shelf. And all you can think about is how am I gonna heal myself? How am I gonna get back to where I was before? I’ve been there, I’m sure you’ve been there, and I know that you know someone who has been there. So I want this book to allow you to make food so you don’t have to worry about food anymore. So you don’t have to focus on how many calories this has, am I gonna get fat, am I gonna be this, am I gonna be that.
So food can be an enjoyable part of your day that brings your community, and your family, or yourself back to yourself. But so between those meals you can go out there and aspire to become your highest self. I created this cookbook so you can live your best life not just in the kitchen, buton the real stage. So let this be an entry point to your journey—mind, body, and spirit. You know that you are worth the time. You know that you feel so much better when you just pay a little bit more attention to the foods that you’re putting into your body, and you are worth every ounce of that.
This book is for your friend who’s trying to be healthy, your mom that’s trying to make changes to your diet, your boyfriend who’s trying to get in the kitchen more, your yoga teacher that you want to show appreciation for, your grandma that wants to learn what people are cooking these days. It is a beautiful gift for this upcoming holiday season, so if you want to buy this as a gift, please, please, please would love for you to pre-order it because pre-ordering the book allows the book to actually end up in more bookstores. Because these bookstores place the orders and the amount of books that will be printed based off of the number of pre-orders it gets.
So that’s why you’ll hear authors say, “Please pre-order my book, please pre-order my book.” Well, I’m telling you why they all say that because when you pre-order the books, that’s when they know, okay, this is how many pre-orders we’re getting so we can expect X number of regular orders are gonna keep coming in, so let’s print out this many.” Have you ever been to a bookstore and you wanted to order a book and they said, “Oh, it’s gonna take four to six weeks.” That’s because that book hadn’t been pre-ordered to the level of orders that actually ended up happening, so they didn’t print enough to meet the demand.
And I don’t want you, or your friend, or anyone out there to go to a bookstore and want to buy this book and have it not available because not enough people pre-ordered it. And then this wisdom won’t be able to reach and help change people’s lives the way that it has mine. And people will, you know, not be able to have this ancient Ayurvedic wisdom accessible to them. So if you ever plan to order the book, please, please, please order it before October 2nd. It is doing a huge, huge, huge gift of gratitude to me, but more importantly, it is sharing Ayurveda far and wide.
It is telling not only bookstores, but it is telling the world that it is time for this ancient healing system to become part of our lives. We see yoga studios on every single corner, but how many people in those yoga studios are living truly yogic lives? We need to take the yoga off the mat, and into the world, and into our kitchens. And Ayurveda is the science of life. In fact, that’s what the term means, Ayurveda, the science of life. So allow this ancient science transform all areas of your life from the foods you eat, to the self-care practices that you do, to your meditations.
And I have all of this in the book, it’s not just recipe, guys. I talk about my approach to Ayurveda, how your dosha’s related to your dharma, the 11 tenets of health according to “Eat Feel Fresh,” about the koshas, the layers outside of your body. I talk about the vibration of foods and foods and habits that increase and decrease your vibrations. I talk about food intolerances, and allergies, and why that’s on the rise. I talk about the energetics of food—prana, tejas, ojas—what these foods mean, how to eat foods that are high in these different types of energies, and how to know if your prana, your vital life force, your tejas, spark of radiance, or your ojas, luster of life are balanced or out of balance.
We of course dive deep into vata, pitta, kapha, the three doshas, the three energy types, but I crafted this book to not be those Ayurvedic cookbooks where only one-third of the recipes apply to you. I saw every Ayurvedic cookbook, this was only for vata, this is only for pitta, this is only for kapha. Well, what if I’m all three? We’re all, all three. So I crafted these recipes for the breakfasts, they are catered specifically to the dosha. You’re gonna eat for your dosha that’s out of balance. Not your prakriti, the doshic constitution you were necessarily born with, but the one that you were the most out of balance with today. That is how you eat Ayurvedically, guys.
So if you’re bloated, gassy, constipated, cold, dry, you want to have the vata balancing breakfast. If you are acidic, hot, sweating a lot, heartburn, you want to eat the pitta balancing breakfast. If you are heavy, gaining weight, sluggish, tired, mucus, asthma, hyperthyroid, you want to eat the kapha balancing breakfast. Now the lunches, the lunches are focused on the six tastes of Ayurveda, and these are the six tastes that we all need regardless of our doshic constitution. And this is a very, very big part of Ayurveda that other Ayurvedic practitioners just don’t talk about. But the six tastes are really the tenets of Ayurveda, and if you’re eating for all six tastes, and your doshas will remain in balance.
So the lunches are all six taste bowls, as I call them, like Buddha bowls, but comprised of the six tastes. I share with you how to make your own six taste bowls, the mechanisms behind that, and different recipes from around the world—Argentinean, Japanese, Italian, Greek, Lebanese—incorporating the six tastes of Ayurveda. And I also have substitutes for the doshas, for example, for if you have a pitta imbalance you shouldn’t be doing lots of onions, and garlic, or chilies, or red peppers. So I have substitutes throughout, and it’s really cute, you’ll see little graphics like, “Hey pittas, like switch out this onion for a fennel bulb,” and it’s very just engaging and fun.
This is the kind of book you just want o your coffee table and will just peer through and it just transports you to India. And the dinners are all tri-doshic, mostly one-pot bowls. Because for me, when I was making this book, I’m like, “Okay, should I do all my, you know, super sophisticated recipes from culinary school that are beautifully plated, and have all these steps, or should I make it really easy and the foods that I actually cook all the time” because I don’t have time on a weeknight to make an intricate recipe. I just want to put some food on the table so I can get back to my e-mails and live my life.
So I wanted to make it real. This is not about impressing anyone, this is about foods that you’re actually gonna eat, guys. If you’ve never cooked before, this is a great cookbook for you. So lots of one-pot meals, and just super simple things. I look at tacos, and chili, and all these foods you’re familiar with—pizzas—from an Ayurvedic perspective. How can we make a pizza with sweet potato crust? How can we make cauliflower cassava tacos and add some turmeric and cumin in there to make it easier to digest?
So I look at all these super easy, super modern recipes. You’ve probably made them before, but changing them with an Ayurvedic focus. We talk about the gunas, the qualities of foods, how to balance them out, heavy versus light, hot versus cold, smooth versus rough, stable versus mobile, et cetera. I go into all of this. So if you are foodie, a nutrition person, spiritual person, or you’re none of them but you kind of want to learn more about them, maybe it’s an area in your life that you want to dive deeper into, this book is for you.
So I am so honored and so excited to share this with you. I also talk about dual doshas in this book because I feel like no Ayurveda book talks about dual doshas. So vata-pitta, pitta-vata, pitta-kapha, kapha-pitta, vata-kapha, kapha-vata. I break all of that down, what do they look like, how do they react under stress, how do they tolerate heat, what is their energy like, what is their digestion like, what is their build like, how did they gain weight, what are their personalities like. I dive into all of that, guys, so it’s so much more than just a cookbook, but it’s my entire approach to Ayurveda.
So again, pre-order the book over on Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Target, Wal-Mart, wherever you buy your books and save the screenshot, and it’ll be in your e-mail, and submit it over to me on eatfeelfresh.com and you will receive your pre-order bonuses. So honored, so excited to have you on this journey, and I’ll see you guys on my book tour. Namaste.
Episode 117 – How Ayurveda Saved My Life with Sahara Rose