List of wholesome and unwholesome

Best foods
Red rice (rakta shali) is the best among paddy that has bristles
Green gram is the best among pulses
Rain water collected before it touches the ground is the best among waters
Rock salt is the best among salts
Jivanti (Leptadenia Reticulata) is the best among pot herbs
Ena (a type of deer) is the best among the meat of big animals
Quail among meat of birds
Iguana among meat of animals living in holes
Grass carp (roha) among fish,
Cow’s ghee among ghees
Cow’s milk among milk
Sesame oil among vegetable oils
Pig fat among meat of marshy animals
Fat of the Gangetic dolphin among fish fat
Fat of the white swan among aquatic birds
Fat of hen among gallinaceous types of birds with beaks
Fat of goat among fats of tree branch eating animals
Ginger among rhizomes
Grapes among fruits
Sarkara (misri or crystal sugar) among preparation of sugar cane


Most unwholesome articles:
Yavaka (form of small barley) among paddy having bristles
Black gram among pulses
River water in rainy season among waters
Ushara (salt from saline soil) among salts
Mustard green is the most unwholesome among pot herbs,
Beef among meats
Kana Kapota (Young dove) among meat of bird
Frog is most unwholesome among meat of  animals living in the holes
Chilichima among fish
Ghee of sheep milk among ghee
Sheep milk among milk
Safflower (Canthamus tinctorius Linn) oil among vegetable fats
Fat of Water Buffalo among fats of marshy animals
Fat of water foul among fats of aquatic animals
Fat of Kumbhira (Crocodile) among fats of aquatic animals
Fat of Chataka (sparrow) among fats of gallinaceous types of birds
Fat of elephant among fats of tree branch eating animals
Nikucha (Atrocarpus nikucha Roxb) among fruits
Aluka (potato) among rhizomes and roots
Phanita (treacle) among preparations of sugar cane



Best of:
Food is the best among things which sustain life
Water is best to generate soothing effect
Wine is best to dispel fatigue
Milk is best of that which enlivening and invigorates
Meat is best among nourishing food
Meat soup (Mamsarasa) is best among refreshing and nourishing food
Salt is best among substances that enhance taste.
Sour substances are best among cardiac tonics
Chicken is best to improve strength and immunity,
Semen of crocodile (Nakra Retas) is the best among aphrodisiac substances
Honey is the best substance to balance Kapha and Pitta
Cow ghee is the best substances to balance Vata and Pitta
Taila (sesame oil) is the best to balance Vata and Kapha
Vamana (emesis) therapy is the best of Kapha balancing procedures
Virechana is the best of Pitta balancing procedures
Basti is the best of Vata balancing procedures
Swedana (sweating therapy) is the best among procedures to bring about softness and tenderness
Exercise (Vyayam) is the best to bring about firmness of the body
Kshara is the best substances to cause impotence
Tinduka (Diospros peregrine Gurke) is the best amongst substances that hurt the taste of food
Unripe Kapittha (Feronia Limonia Swingle) is the best among those to hurt the throat and quality of sound of the voice
Sheep ghee is the best amongst those to damaging the heart
Goat milk is the best among those substances that mitigate emaciation, improve breast milk, improve blood production, absorbent (best in grahani) and best in bleeding disorders
Sheep milk is best to Vitiate Kapha and Pitta Dosha
Buffalo milk is best to induce sleep
Half-formed curds (Mandaka Dadhi) is best to obstruct the body channels and circulation
Food prepared of Wheat Grass (Triticum aestivum Linn) to cause emaciation
Food prepared with Uddalaka (a variant of black gram) is best to cause drying
Sugarcane is best in producing a diuretic effect.
Barley is best to increase bulk of feces
Jambu (java plum/Syzygium cumini) is best in aggravating Vata
Shashkuli type of pastry is best in aggravating Pitta and Kapha
Kulattha (horse gram) is best in causing Amlapitta (hyperacidity)
Black gram is best in aggravating Kapha and Pitta
Fruit of Madana (Emetic Nut/Randia dumetorum Lam) is best in Vamana, Asthapana and anuvasana types of enema
Trivrit (operculina turpethum R.B) is best in causing easy purgation
Aragvadha (Purging cassia/Cassia fistula Linn) is best in causing mild purgation
Milk of the Snuhi plant (Common milk hedge/Euphorbia nerifolia Linn) is best in causing strong purgation
Apamarga (Chaff tree/Achyrantes aspera Linn) is best in eliminating doshas from the head
Vidanga (False black pepper/Embelia ribes Burm .f.) is best for destroying parasites
Shirisha (Lebbeck/Albizzia Lebbeck Benth) is best anti-poisonous herb
Khadira (Acacia catechu wild) is best in curing skin diseases
Rasna (Pluchea lanceolata) is best in alleviating vata
Amalaka (Emblica officinalis) is the best rasayana (rejuvenation)
Haritaki (terminalia chebula Linn) is best wholesome fruit
Castor root (Eranda moola) is best to alleviating Vata and aphrodisiac
Pippalimoola (long pepper root) is best to promoting digestion, carmination and relieving bloating and constipation
Root of Chitraka (Plumbago zeylanica Linn) is best in promoting digestion, carmination and curing hemorrhoids and colic pain
Pushkaramula (Inula racemosa hook) is best to curing hiccup, asthma, cough and pain in the chest
Musta (Nut Grass/cyperus rotunds Linn) is best in causing astringent effect
Udichya (Fragrant Swamp Mallow/Pavonia odorata) is best in causing digestion, carmination, anti-emetic and anti-diarrheal.
Katvanga (Araluka/Oroxylum indicum) is best to cause absorption, to improve digestion and carmination.
Ananta (Sariva/Hemidesmus indicus) is best to cause absorption and in bleeding disorders
Guduchi (Gilroy/Tinospora cordifolia) is best to cause astringent effect, promoting digestion, alleviating Vata and Kapha, constipation and raktapitta (bleeding disorders)
Bael (Bilva/Aegle marmelos) is best to cause astringent effect, promotes digestion, and alleviates Vata and Kapha.
Ativisha (Indian Atees/Aconitum heterophyllum) is best to cause an astringent effect, promote digestion, carmination and alleviation of all doshas.
Utpala (White water lily/Nymphaea alba), Kumuda (blue water lily) and Padma (Lotus/Prunus cerasoides) is best in causing astringent effect and alleviating bleeding disorders
Duralabha (Fagonbushe/Fagonia cretica) is best in alleviating Kapha and Pitta.
Gandha Priyangu (Beutyberry/Callicarpa macrophylla) is best for alleviating acute heavy bleeding
Kutaja Bark (Kurchi/Holarrhena antidysenterica) is best for balancing Kapha and Pitta, causing astringent effect of blood and drying absorbing quality
Gambhari fruit (Beech wood/Gmelina arborea) is best for causing hemostasis and curing bleeding disorders
Prishniparni (Uraria picta) is the best astringent and aphrodisiac, causing digestive effect and alleviating Vata
Vidarigandha (Ipomoea digitata) is best aphrodisiac and balances all doshas
Bala (Country Mallow/Sida cordifolia) is best in causing absorbing action, improving strength and relieving Vata Dosha.
Gokshura (Goat’s Head/Tribulus terrestris) is best in relieving dysuria
Asafoetida (Hingu) is best in causing excision, promoting digestion, downward movement of Vata (Anulomik), and balancing Vata and Kapha dosha
Amlavetasa (Garcinia pedunculata) is best in causing purgation, promoting digestion, downward movement of vata (Anulomik) and balancing Vata and Kapha.
Barley Ash (Yavakshara) is best in causing laxative effect, carmination and cures hemorrhoids
Buttermilk is best in curing Grahani (digestive disorders), Shotha (edema), hemorrhoids and excessive ghee intake
Continual use of meat soup of carnivorous animals is best in curing grahani, emaciation and hemorrhoids
Continual use of milk and ghee is best in causing anti aging effect (rasayana)
Continual use of equal quantities of ghee and saktu (roasted corn flour) is best aphrodisiac and Vata balancing.
Sesame oil (Tila tailum) is best to strengthen teeth in gandusha and to relieve lack of appetite
Sandalwood (Chandana) is best in reliving bad odor, burning sensation and best lepana
Rasna (Pluchea lanceolata) and Agaru (Aquilaria agallocha) is best in removing coldness with use as lepana
Lamajjaka (Cymbopogon jwarancusa) is best in curing burning sensation, skin diseases, and sweating with use as lepana
Kushta (Saussurea lappa) is best to balance Vata with usage as massage and/or poultice
Madhuka (Licorice) is best to improve health of eyes, aphrodisiac effect, improving hair quality, throat and voice, complexion, imparting color and healing of wounds
Air is best to restore prana and consciousness
Fire is best in curing indigestion, stiffness, cold, colic pain and shivers
Water is best for causing absorbancy and astringent effect
Water from a mud pot is best in alleviating thirst and vomiting
Eating excess quantities is best to cause aama (metabolic morbid waste and impaired metabolism)
Intake of food as per digestion strength is best to improve digestion
A wholesome diet and regime is best to create health
Eating meals at the right time is best to promote health
Trupti (satisfaction) is the best quality of food
Suppression of urges (vega dharana) is the best way to cause disease
Alcohol (madya) is best to sooth the mind and cause exhilaration
Alcohol addiction is the best to lose intelligence, memory, and patience
Heavy food intake (Guru ahara) is best to create indigestion
Intake of only one meal a day is the best way to create digestion and absorption of food
Excessive indulgence in sex is best to cause emaciation
Continual suppression of ejaculation is the best for impotency
The butcher shop is the best to cause aversion to food
Fasting is best way to reduce of longevity
Reducing food intake quantity is best to lose weight
Eating a meal before digestion of previous meal is best in causing disease
Eating meals in irregular timing is the best to cause irregularity and weakening of the digestive power
Eating incompatible foods items is best to create the worst of diseases
Peaceful, soothing, and calming behavior is the best promoter of health
Exertion beyond one’s capacity is best to create ill-health and disease later on in life
Improper utilization of objects of the sense organs is best in causing disease
Sex with a menstruating woman is most inauspicious activity
Celibacy is best to gain longevity
Adultery is best to reduce longevity
Resolution is the best aphrodisiac
Having difference of opinion is the best anti-aphrodisiac
Effort beyond one’s capacity is best to lose one’s life
Grief and depression is best way to make a disease worse
Bath is best to remove fatigue
Cheerfulness is best to create pleasure
Worry is best to cause emaciation
Detachment is best to cause nourishment
Eating food that is nutritious is best to induce sleep
Excessive amount of sleep is best in causing drowsiness
Meals with all the 6 tastes is best to promote strength and immunity
Meals with one taste is best to cause debility
A dead fetus is best to be removed immediately
Indigestion is best to be averted
Children are best to be given mild medicines
Aged patients are best to be given palliating medicines
Pregnant women are best to not be given strong medicines, engage in sex, or exercise
Having like mindedness is best for conception
The worst imbalance to treat has involvement of all doshas
Aama is best to be considered as toxicity
Fever is worst among disease
Skin disease is the disease with the longest duration
Rajayakshma (TB/AIDS) is the best disease complicated of many other diseases
Urinary disorders are the best repeating disease
Leech is the best surgical device
Basti is the best elimination therapy
Himalayas is the best place for medicinal plants
Soma is the best medicine
Desert is best among healthy place
Marshy land is unhealthiest place
Compliance with the instructions of the doctor is the best quality of patient
Atheist is best to be rejected for treatment
Greed is the best to cause the worst troubles
Noncompliance is the worst prognostic sign
Confidence is the best prognosis of recovery
Having a group of physicians is best to eradicate doubts
Conforming to standards is the best quality of a physician
Knowledge is the best medicine
Scriptural logic is best way to gain knowledge
Presence of mind is best to understand a situation
Inaction is the best way to waste time
Practical experience is best to rid doubt
Incompetence is best to cause fear
Reasoning based discussion with peers is best in creating wisdom and intelligence
The guru is best tool to understand science
Knowledge of Ayurveda is the best nectar
Words of noble person is the best to be followed
Words of wicked is the best to cause troubles
Complete detachment is the best to achieve happiness


10 thoughts on “List of wholesome and unwholesome

  1. ” Fasting is best way to reduce of longevity ”
    I thought that fasting increases longevity, meaning it prolongs one’s lifespan and promotes good health. Can you please elaborate on this?
    Thank you!

    • Hi George. Thanks for the comment. Good question. In brevity…… first off someone of vata dominance is not to fast in the general way fasting is thought out there as it is detrimental. In Ayurveda, fasting is called langhana which actually means lightening. In this context, it is even just doing less or even a lightening of the diet, they would eat less quantity or qualities. All fasting will increase vata. After aama is digested, if there is any aama, then the doshas are then digested. After the digestion of the doshas, then there is the digestion of the dhatus or the tissues. This itself will create its own imbalance and is a detriment. Vata is the cause of all disease. In long term, fasting is going to decrease longevity. I could say the same for staying up late at night for the basic same reasons.

  2. Thank you for your answer. Quite interesting what you say about staying up, I’ll come back to that.
    In all honesty, I follow your blog for general advice and the interesting writings and am not fully aware of my Ayurvedic profile. I have fasted once for 1 week, drinking just water, after reading a book about Tao ist medicine. I felt good however lost a good amount of weight (5 kg out of 72) and remained thin like that for the next 6 months. Muscle tissue decreased visibly. My digestion was troubling me at the time, and fasting somehow fixed it, but not totally and I wasn’t very pleased with it.

    Regarding staying up, have known a lot of people who stay up late for various reasons, I myself included during college. All of them (and mostly young women) showed signs of premature aging, the girls (women) in their early to mid twenties looking more like 30.
    Once again, thanks for replying to me. I’ll search more about the subject now.

    • Your welcome.
      Yes. I would say that if one has the ability to diagnosis and understand what is going on, what you have written about your experience fasting is easily seen to everything I stated, and more because there is this really tricky part….. what we do not understand can harm us. When we do stuff like fast for a week or for a month, we might see the muscle wasting, what we do not understand is the effect of the depletion on the entire system or other effects. Just think all the nonsense stuff that is out there in the public domain that people are following without knowledge. Tide Pods being a very excessive and dramatic example but an example none the less.

  3. If the purpose of fasting is to relieve ama and the doshas do the doshas not get digested while one is not fasting? I know that ama is always the priority of agni but does it not digest ama and doshas simultaneously?

  4. Hi,
    As a non-Indian who’s really into the Vedic tradition, I’m always glad to find fellow Westerners who are also into it.
    I’m puzzled that you gave no reference [that I could see] for the points listed here. It sounds like something from Charak, is that correct?

    • hey Raj
      There are several foods that are nourishing for a vegetarian. Milk being one. But different foods will build nourishment of different tissues. So it is a bit more complicated than that. No easy simple take this and everything is beautiful. Life is not that either. Don’t look for it. Say you don’t have strong agni. Now with me telling you that a certain food is nourishing for vegetarians you go and eat alot of it because you think you need noursihment, well now you have just created disease. Hmmmm. Or say you have aama and now you start to drink a lot of milk. Same same. Just created disease with the thinking things are simple.

      Opo squash/lauki vegetable is nourishing. I could give a list. But ayurveda is the understanding of what is good for the individual in the time and the environment etc etc etc

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