If properly combined, food has the qualities of medicines. Chinese medicine and our own Ayurveda has emphasized on the significance of correct combinations of food for long. If strategically combined, the food we eat itself can aid optimum digestion and good health. Ayurveda has always identified bad digestion as the root cause of a lot of illnesses.
Slowly western medicine has also started to appreciate the fact that if properly combined, two or three foods can deliver more health benefits than if they were consumed individually.
The basics of food combining
The foremost principle is to avoid drinking water or other beverages while eating. This will only dilute your digestive juices and slow down the process of digestion. The ideal way is to drink less water while you eat and increase the intake of water between meals.
Bad food combinations are the main reasons why we have gas, bloating, constipation or diarrhea. The issues worsen if the bad food combinations are habitual.
A major mistake we often commit is to combine fruits with other foods. There should be longer breaks between another meal if the fruit was really sweet. It is advisable to eat fruit on an empty stomach, two hours after a meal or at least half hour before a meal.
While it is alright to combine citrus with most foods, melons should not be eaten in combination with other foods. Avoid eating sweets after a protein rich meal. Think twice before eating the sweet dish after the rajma chawal lunch or the chicken biriyani for it might lead to indigestion. Another common mistake is to combine starch with protein or in simpler language, potatoes and meat. Ideally meat should be combined with low starch vegetables.