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What supplements should I take?

Eat food Not too much Mostly plants. Michael Pollen - blog by

What supplements should I take?

I get asked that question all the time.  I even got asked that question several times during a workshop I gave that was titled “Ayurveda:  Food is Medicine.”  Based on the title of the workshop, you have probably guessed my answer, at least in part.

Diet and Lifestyle

It is Ayurveda’s goal to create a healthy space within the body to support the evolution of the soul.  In Ayurveda there are two simple principles that are at the core of health of the mind, body and soul.

The first principle is as follows:  “Without proper diet and lifestyle, herbs are of no use.  With proper diet and lifestyle, herbs of no need.”  So perhaps, that is a little extreme, but you get the point, no?   It is estimated that approximately 80% of chronic disease, such as heart disease, obesity, and some types of cancer, could be prevented or eradicated through diet and lifestyle alone!

Offending Agents

The second principle in Ayurveda that is at the core of health is “first remove the offending agent(s).”  Again, no brainer, right?  Yet, jumping into supplements, without first addressing diet, lifestyle and offending agent(s) is exactly the silliness we can get caught in.  I’ve done it too!  And many times!!!

A Different Question

In short, I believe the question is flawed.  Perhaps the question could be “How can I best nourish my body?”

Eat Real Food

In my opinion Michael Pollen summed it up rather nicely when he said “Eat food. Not too much .Mostly plants.”  I have expanded his supple foundation as below:

“Eat real food that is fresh, lightly cooked with love.  Eat local, organic, and seasonal.  Eat mostly vegetables.   Eat in a relaxed environment.   Eat mindfully with gratitude thereby honoring the divine act of eating.”

Start with the practice of self-inquiry using the question: be “How can I best nourish my body?”


Additional reference:  Eat, Taste, Heal by Thomas Yarema, Daniel Rhoda, and Jonny Brannigan

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