You are here: Sri Vaishnava Home Page : Bhakti List : Archives : October 1998

Part 3 on Control of mind-Role of Dietary Regimen.
Date: Fri Oct 16 1998 - 12:07:20 PDT

Dear Bhagavtas:
Presented below is Part 3 on Control of mind-Role of Dietary Regimen.
Anbil Ramaswamy

Let us now consider the effect of Tamoguna on the mind of a person. He becomes
sinful, sluggish, stupid, sullen, dull, depraved, degenerate, devoid of any
sense of responsibilities, inert -- eating whatever and whenever he gets (even
putrified food) sleeping wherever and whenever he can, and dies when his time
comes - He is so lazy that even for putting food into his mouth, he would need
someone to help. The only way to retrieve him to normality would be force and
flog him into incessant activity.

Our Sages and Seers have laid down the Do's and Dont's to help us avoid
Tamoguna completely, regulate Rajoguna on desirable lines and promote
Satvaguna. That food habits regulate the bodyclock and insure against disease
and deterioration has been proclaimed by our ancestors but has been accepted
by modern research only now:

For long, it had been fashionable for the Westernized Indians themselves to
decry Indian Vegetarian foods of grains and cereals like rice and wheat which
they said were 'stupid' and merely 'belly filling Carbo hydrates' without any
nutritional value. They plumped in for disproportionate doses of vegetables
and fruits with a liberal allowance of meat, poultry, fish, eggs.  

Leading nutrition organizations and prominent food trade councils have now
endorsed the US department of Agriculture's selection of `food -- guide --
pyramid' as the graphics to convey the types and amounts of food that should
be consumed daily. JUDY DODD, President of the American dietic association and
BARBARA SHANNON, President of the society for nutrition education advocate
"consumption of grains, cereals and rice as the staff of life followed by
fruits and vegetables to make calorie intake more manageable, putting serving
sizes in perspective, reducing fats and oil while increasing milk, yogurt and
cheese group to ensure a `balanced diet' - as a valuable source of energizing
complex carbohydrates while giving a sense of fulness and satisfaction"(Vide
the 'Food Pyramid' recommended by them and accepted by the US Department of
Agriculture which is printed on the covers of bread packets.)

It will be seen therefrom that the much maligned rice group has now regained
its pride of place with over 40% of the total intake since the 'stupid and
belly filling Carbohydrates' has not at all been stupid but highly sensible,
since it has been recognized as an important source of energy with the fruits
and vegetables group ranked only secondary to the rice group while the much
trumpeted meat and fat group has plummeted to a new low, if not wholly
eliminated. Now, the nutrition experts say that such a balanced diet should
consist of 'heavy breakfast, light lunch and a lighter dinner'- precisely the
reverse of what most people do in the USA.
(To Continue)