Rasas- The Tastes to which Ayurveda adds much more
Ayurveda Classics have described a critical factor for digestion and health. That is the six rasas (taste)- Madhura(Sweet), Amla (sour), Lavan (salt), Katu (Pungent), Tikta (Bitter) and Kashaya(Astringent).
Each of these rasas are consituted by the permutation and combination of Penta elements- Jala(water), Prithvi(earth), Vayu(Air), Akasha (Space) and Agni (Fire They exhibit the inherent characteristics of these penta elements and so is their action on the human body.
Madhura Rasa (Sweet taste) is nourishing to the body,senses, bones, muscles, enhances vitality and improves the reproductive capacity. Madhura rass clearly imparts clarity to vision, touch, smell, hearing and speech. Sweet taste improves the quality of skin, hair, and adds lustre.
Ayurveda clearly states that sweet taste brings stability to body and mind. It is the best remedy to cure burning and heat sensation, giddiness, etc.
The article points out a researchThe post- sugar diet M.R.I. showed increased activity in the areas of the brain controlling fear and stress in the sugar group.
The senior author, Kevin D. Laugero, a nutritionist with the federal Department of Agriculture, said no one should conclude that sugar should be used as a stress reducer. But, he said, “the finding is intriguing because it suggests that there is a metabolic pathway sensitive to sugar outside the brain that may expose new targets for treating neurobehavioral and stress-related conditions.”
This is very much similar to what Ayurveda classics had stated centuries ago that 6 tastes are fundamental to human health. And during the process of digestion these fundamental tastes reduce to three metabolic states (Vipaka- Vishista Paka) - Madhura- (Sweet) - Amla (Sour) - and katu-(Pungent). Madhura Vipaka - Sweet end product is eases excretions and is nourishing to body body and the mind.