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Is it alright to have spirulina and chlorella together with starchy food like rice?

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Ayurveda Specialist
Practicing since : 2003
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Hello. i would like to ask a question regarding ayurvedic approach to healthy eating. I have read that correct food combining is essential. I read that starches and proteins should not be consumed together, but vegetables can be consumed with either. My question is about plant based proteins, like bamboo shoots, and seaweed supplements like spirulina and chlorella. These are complete protein foods but also essentially vegetables. Is it alright to have them together with a starchy food like rice? Also want to ask about fruit. I understand melon in particular should be eaten alone, but that sour fruits like citrus and pineapple are not so bad if eaten close to protein or starch. I try to leave at least half an hour between these fruits and other foods, and avoid melons. Is this enough time? Many thanks for your help XXXXXXX
Posted Mon, 10 Mar 2014 in Ayurveda
Answered by Dr. Munish Sood 7 hours later
Brief Answer: Explanations below... Detailed Answer: Thanks for contacting Ayurveda with your health concern and following is/are necessary guidance to healthy eating. 1. Reason for not taking proteins and starch [carbohydrates] together is that while proteins requires an acidic medium for its digestion, starch requires alkaline medium for the same, and consuming both together will result in neither the proteins nor the starches getting absorbed, and body will get depreciated of necessary nutrients and end result will be digestive and health problems like; indigestion, bloating, flatulence, fatigue, high cholesterol, weight gain, and more 2. You can consume OLD brown rice or rice XXXXXXX with bamboo shoots, spirulina and since chlorella has 55 times more protein than rice, you can take it as a supplement or eat it as a whole. 3. Regarding intake of fruits following points are worth mentioning: . fruit are considered to be carbohydrate because of their high sugar content; but they are not starch because of their high water content, i.e., the higher the water content in food the easier it is to digest. . since fruits are alkaline forming thus starchy diet can be taken. . because the sugar and other nutrients in melons are in a less stable form than the nutrients of other fruits thus, if it is taken along with other fruits, it has to wait or keep waiting the digestion of other foods, resulting in fermentation and gastric problems. . since digestion of fruits is/are rapid, it is possible to eat fruit before any other food, and time period of 5-10 minutes is good, [again you are the best judge in this issue] 4. I usually tell my patients and ask them to follow the said guidelines. i. Anything you do, go low and go slow and make changes gradually, as your small changes become habit, you can continue to ADD more healthy choices. ii. Eat a variety of nutrient rich food but which have some added advantage like: . Cabbage (cholesterol lowering benefits), . carrot (helps in liver detoxification), cauliflower (ideal against abdominal problems), . dates - (best for muscle development), . onions ( contains flavinoids which protect against cardiovascular disease), . garlic ( has broad spectrum antibiotic properties) iii. Daily regime : Don’t skip breakfast;Take your lunch between 12 - 1 PM which is the peak period of Pitta (responsible for digestion); have your dinner 2 hours before sleeping. ii. Make sure you do not travel long, do strenuous exercise, or indulge in sexual activities within one hour after meal iii. Proper sleep with proper diet is the key to healthy living in Ayurveda. iv. Avoid smoking, alcohol, caffeine, eating late at night, stress, drink water instead of colas v. Practice Yoga, Meditation and go for an exercise regime.. vi. Walk a while after meal to help digestion vii. Remember good food leads to noble thoughts with sound memory helping in mental health and social well being IMMUNOMODULATION (Immunity) Rasayana drugs (Rejuvenation/Immunomodulators) should be instituted in your management as part of XXXXXXX (palliative) therapy i.e. which corrects the dysfunction of tissues without disturbing the functions of normal tissues, also Rasayana drugs potentiates humoral antibodies by increasing serum Immunoglobulin’s such as IgA, IgG and IgM. i.Proteins are essential for antibodies production so milk, egg (white), beans, yogurt, soyamilk, pumpkin, squash, watermelon, peanuts, almonds. ii. Vitamin A: helps to maintain Thymus gland which is a powerful antiviral gland : thus mango, carrots, cantaloupe, egg yolk, apricots, pumpkin, papaya are ideal iii. V itamin C: is needed for proper functioning of immune system: amla is best iv. Vitamin E: is a powerful anti oxidant which helps to stimulate antibody production: peanuts, dried apricots, cooked spinach, taro root can be taken v. Vitamin B is important for the activity of phagocytes: eggs, cheese, pistachio, raw garlic, sunflower and sesame oil. Please revert back for any clarifications and your suggestions Dr. Munish Sood Consultant & Physician
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Follow-up: Is it alright to have spirulina and chlorella together with starchy food like rice? 52 minutes later
Thank you Dr Sood for your very comprehensive reply. I have a couple of further questions. Firstly, regarding consumption of saturated, poly or unsaturated oils. I note you mention sesame and sunflower for vit B, but what about friendly cholesterol promoting oils like olive, hempseed, macadamia? Should one consume a fair amount of those? Also regarding doshas, I note that you mention pitta as being the one that governs digestion, being at peak between mid-day and 1pm. What do the others govern and what are their peak times? Does one have a natural tendency towards one dosha type or personality, such as Vata, and if so does one need to nourish it, or is too much of one dosha a bad thing. Should we strive to balance all three? Thanks so much for your help XXXXXXX
Answered by Dr. Munish Sood 1 hour later
Brief Answer: health benefits and drawbacks Detailed Answer: Thanks for reverting back with your concern(s) 1. olive oil is mono saturated while sunflower oil is polysaturated, it depends upon the choice of the person as to which he/she considers best for his/her health since both are considered under 'low fat diet' and moreover sunflower oil is good source of Vitamin B1,B3 and B6 whereas Olive oil reduces “bad” cholesterol levels in the bloodstream, while raising HDL or “good” cholesterol levels but is poor source of Vitamin B thus again it will depend upon the pathology concerned. [whether you are taking it to increase Immunity or reduce Cholesterol] PS. When deciding what macadamia variety to purchase, get a range of opinions from experienced orchardists and processors in your local area. 2. There are 5 sub types of 'pitta' in our body which govern : . Pachak [aids in digestion] . Ranjak [aid in hemoglobin] . Sadhak: [ regulates emotion and function of heart and mind] . Alochak [ governs the function of eyes] . bhrajak [which governs and manifests itself through the skin] PS. so it is clear from the said functions that in digestion 'pachak' pitta is necessary along with one sub type of Vata i.e. saman vayu and one sub type of kapha i.e. kaledak kapha so peak time will be decided on the condition i.e. whether the person has a physical [organic] or mental [emotional] pathology, thus in best Interest it is wise to Consult an Ayurveda Physician there for better understanding. 3. Regarding Personality: It should be well remembered that no one has got a 100% pure XXXXXXX there is always an admixture of two Doshas in each person's XXXXXXX [individual constitution] but YES there may be a predominace of the qualities of one Dosha over the other in one person. PS. In nut shell Vata is kinetic energy, Kapha is potential energy while Pitta controls he body's balance of kinetic and potential energies. Vata, Pitta and Kapha are called Doshas because the word "Dosha" means: things which can go out of balance. 4. regarding balancing the three: it should be remembered that because they are so reactive the body cannot afford to store them within itself for long, they are therefore eliminated from the body regularly in the course of performing their functions [so you don't have to strive, body will take care by itself] PS. . Vata is eliminated both as gas and as muscular or nervous energy . Pitta is regularly excreted through acid and bile . Kapha is continually expelled from the body via mucus. Dr. Munish Sood Naimittika
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Follow-up: Is it alright to have spirulina and chlorella together with starchy food like rice? 9 hours later
Thank you Dr Soona, I can see that knowledge of the doshas is a very complex study. I will consider consulting an ayurveda physician. I have a final question regarding consumption of proteins and starch. Are nuts and beans complete proteins which should be eaten separately from rice or other grains? And if a starchy vegetable such as sweet potato is eaten instead of rice, can it be eaten together with proteins? Thank you so much , you have been a great help Regards XXXXXXX
Answered by Dr. Munish Sood 10 hours later
Brief Answer: Food Combining Detailed Answer: Dear XXXXXXX Thanks for reverting back with your concern(s) 1. Since your first query is directed regarding complete protein it is worth mentioning that a complete protein is one having all the essential amino acids in it and best example is animal protein BUT since you are a "vegan" [vegetarian as far as I understood] there is soy, amaranth, hemp seed and quinoa, and you could try a combination of two or more foods which have incomplete proteins, and thus you can have a healthy complete proteins-rich diet, such as i. whole grains [bread] with dairy [cheese or yogurt] ii. legumes [BEANS, peas,lentils] with grains [brown rice] iii. nuts and beans [salad] PS. Variety is the key, be sure to pick from the combination(s) described above on daily basis. 2. since sweet potatoes contains small amount of protein [plant-based protein foods are incomplete] thus you are RIGHT in combining it with other source of proteins. [such as sweet potato with brown rice/tofu/walnuts will give you additional proteins] Hope I have given due consideration in taking up your query any suggestions are welcome. Dr. Munish Sood Naimittika
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