Understanding the Ayurvedic notion of rasa is particularly interesting since it includes the fundamental knowledge of which rasas enter the body and their nutritional advantages and makeup. Each taste has a unique fragrance that can be found in depth.
Rasa is typically thought of as taste, but according to Rasa in Ayurveda, there is a sense organ called rasendriya that has the ability to take in the taste and identify what it is.
Rasa is the Guna that is absorbed and recognized by the tongue or rasendriya. Water is the fundamental component of all flavors, and when coupled with other Panchamahabhoot, it creates a variety of rasas with distinct flavors, aromas, and health advantages. According to Ayurveda, Rasa is the very first dhatu out of seven dhatus.
Rasa is primarily composed of six rasas or shad rasa. The primary flavors are
- Madhur (sweet)
- Amla (sour)
- Lavana (salt)
- Tikta (bitter)
- Katu (pungent)
- Kashya (astringent)
We each need to grasp the characteristics of each rasa and how it impacts the body.
The first flavor that the human tongue can detect is Madhur, or sweetness, and it is often everyone’s favorite. Madhur rasa in Ayurveda is composed of earth and water, similarly each flavor contains a unique combination of the panchmahabhoot constituents. Given the presence of these two components, it is evident that Madhur rasa possesses the attributes of the two aforementioned components, including
- Heavy – Madhur rasa is heavy in nature and has bruhana characteristics, suggesting that it should nourish the body.
- Vicious – it has a mucous-like or honey-like consistency with a minor tendency to flow, and it also accumulates under certain circumstances
- Cold – Madhur Rasa is extremely potent and reduces the stomach’s overproduction of digestive acids while also neutralizing excess of pitta dosha.
- It has anti-inflammatory qualities and body-building medhya properties. It improves the body’s radiance and gloss.
- According to Ayurveda, it aggravates the kapha dosha while balancing the vata and pitta doshas, which reduces the discomfort brought on by their irregularities.
- Examples :- milk, sugar,ghee and etc
Although excessive consumption of Madhur rasa in Ayurveda causes allergies, microbial growth, skin conditions, obesity, high blood sugar levels and etc.
The components of Amla, or the sour Guna, are Prithvi and Agni panchamahabhoot. Both of them have unique exclusivisity that, when combined, produce a flavor that is light to digest. Due to the presence of Prithvi, it has a Snigdha quality, which is slightly unctuous in nature but not as Madhur rasa.
- Laghu guna has a calming effect and is light to digest in the gut. It is also easily absorbed by the membrane.
- Ushna has a heated potency that aids in the digestion of fatty foods and stimulates the stomach’s Agni.
- Amla rasa in Ayurveda lowers the kapha dosha because Agni mahabhoota is present in nature, but when ingested in excess, it tends to enhance the vata and pitta doshas.
- When consumed in excess, it causes an increase in raktadosha, which causes skin and blood allergies. Additionally, it results in dental problems like toothaches and oral ulcers. It also triggers an inflammatory response.
- Due to its peculiar flavor, it increases libido while also giving the body overall strength. It also aids in having deepan-paachan qualities in food that is simple to digest and safeguards the stomach’s Agni.
- Examples:- Amla, tomatoes, and various citrus rich food items
The most often used substance in a typical household, salt has a huge number of health benefits for the body. Iodine, a significant component of salt, is necessary for small amounts to sustain a healthy metabolic rate. According to rasa in Ayurveda, salt has the qualities of Snigdha, guru, and ushna.
- Its ability to cause the body to expel moisture makes it Snigdha/unctuous in nature. We only require a small amount of salt because it is heavy and too much salt has a lot of negative effects.
- Lavana has ushna Guna, which is hot energy with good digestion. The body’s kledana, or humidifier, is what causes the water retention that occasionally causes pitting edema.
- Example:- Salt
Tikta rasa is a ruksha, sheet, and laghu-containing bitter rasa in Ayurveda. Vayu and Akash Mahabhoot made up Tikta rasa. Vaayu is the term for air with the ability to flow rapidly through the body, and Akash is the element that denotes how quickly it is absorbed by the body’s empty spaces. It has ruksha qualities, which allude to kaphashamak quality. It lessens mucus production.
- Along with it, there is a cold-potency sheet that aids in reducing the body’s aggravated pitta dosha, which is in charge of the production of inflammatory substances, acidity, blood toxicity, and other things.
- Additionally, it is laghu guna, which means easy on the gut and supports PH balance in the gut.
- According to lekhana karma, the kapha dosha is scraped from the strotas, turned into a thin fluid, and allowed to flow before being expelled from the body through the pores and perspiration. It improves our sense of taste and has the distinctive quality of combining all the rasa.
- Example:- spinach,neem, bitter gourd
Another flavor combination made of Agni and Vayu with distinctive characteristics is katu rasa in ayurveda. It has a slightly different flavor that is typically consumed in combination with other flavors.
- Onion, garlic, black pepper, mustard-style foods, and spices have strong flavors. These flavors need to be used sparingly because they are so potent.
- It also reduces kapha dosha, but excessive consumption raises pitta and vaat dosha levels, which can cause heartburn, nausea, bad breath, and acidic belching.
- When used appropriately or for a medicinal purpose, however, it promotes healthy digestion and a feeling of lightness in the body.
- Because katu rasa in Ayurveda can easily penetrate body cavities, black peppers are used because they have a variety of medicinal properties.
The flavors that have constriction-inducing effects are astringent. Because of Agni and Prithvi guna, possess a distinctive range of rasa in Ayurveda. Due to the slight heaviness of the Prithvi guna and the presence of the fire element, which is astringent in nature, the blood is able to be cleaned and allowed to flow freely.
- It has anti-inflammatory properties that help to reduce daily minor infections.
- Food items like pomegranates, berries, and unripe bananas fill the stomach and lessen the desire for food hence are good for the weight-reducing plan.
- The kashya rasa’s coolness aids in balancing the pitta dosha’s acidic nature.
- In addition to lowering pitta because of its cool nature and reducing kapha because of its astringent qualities, it increases the vaat dosha when consumed in excess.