Ama – a build up of toxic waste

In Ayurveda, anything undigested in the body is known as ama.

Ama can be anything we take in – from the food we eat, the thoughts we think, our unprocessed emotions or experiences.

Undigested food, or food that isn’t properly digested, assimilated and absorbed well, and cellular waste that isn’t removed efficiently, builds up as ama in the body.

The digestive tract is one of the first places where ama accumulates. Over the time, if too much ama builds up, it will move to or overflow to other body tissues and organs. This is one of the main underlying reasons we have weakened immunity, get sick, create dis-ease, or experience seasonal allergies and other recurring health problems.

Common signs or symptoms that ama is present:

  • a white coating on the tongue
  • bad breath
  • tired or sluggish feeling, especially first thing in the morning
  • persistent headaches
  • cloudy eyes (in the white region)
  • constipation or diarrhea
  • dull aches and pains
  • itchy ears
  • skin rashes
  • allergies
  • the sniffles
  • recurring colds
  • pms
  • unhealthy food cravings
  • and more 

So what can be done to rid the body of ama and regain stronger, more vibrant health?

Depending on which tissue the ama has accumulated in, and how or when the ama built up, and the prakruti or natural tendencies of the individual, there are many ways to burn, unblock, loosen, or flush ama from the body.

Some of the most basic ways to prevent or reduce ama include:

  • increase your agni (digestive fire)
  • do a seasonal cleanse or detox
  • make dinner your lightest meal of the day, and eat it early in the evening (or skip dinner altogether until ama subsides)
  • use more spices in your diet based on your vikruti (nature of disease) and prakriti (inherent nature) such as ginger, black pepper, cumin, fennel, ajwain, hing, etc
  • avoid vityahara (improper food combining) such as bananas and milk, fish and dairy, citrus fruits and dairy, multiple protein sources, very cold with very hot foods, etc.
  • never overeat
  • never eat without hunger
  • never eat with indigestion
  • only sip room-temperature or hot water with your meal (never with ice, or large quantities after your meal)
  • sip hot lemon water throughout the day
  • fast on water between meals

These are just a few suggestions to help reduce or prevent ama from forming in your body. More specific, personalized and relevant suggestions can be made through working with me closely. To book your personal free strategy session, click here.


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