6 tastes of tongue


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The structure of the tongue is so amazing that it can perform dual functions. It is a sensory organ as well as a motor organ. Sensory as it perceives taste of the food that we eat. Motor as it helps us communicate.

For Ayurveda, tongue is a very important organ as far as diet and nutrition is concerned. Because of its sensory function, we perceive 6 tastes. The 6 tastes are sweet, sour, salty, pungent, bitter and astringent. The tastes have very deep impact on our body and mind. Ayurveda says a person is fully balanced when they consume all 6 tastes in a meal. Now how do we perceive these 6 tastes? The tongue has different regions that recognize these tastes. For health promotion and disease prevention, Ayurveda says a healthy person should not consume 1 single taste in excess. This leads to over saturation one taste, which disturbs the homeostasis. We also consume 1 taste in excess to compensate for other missing tastes. Ayurvedic medicine says a clean tongue helps us make healthy food choices. It is true that we consume our food not because of its calorie value, but for its flavor, for its intriguing taste. Simply take an example of a person who is stressed out, angry, always gravitates towards pungent/spicy taste, and consumes it in excess. On the contrary, one who is depressed or sad, Ayurveda says that they gravitate more towards sweet taste as it is comforting and consoling. Ancient science of Ayurveda has found methods of keeping the tongue properly focused. It recommends tongue-scraping, known as JIHVA, means tongue, NIRLEKHANA, means scraping. It is found in all the classical texts of Ayurveda, wherein preferably a silver tongue scraper is used to scrape the tongue. This is done after brushing the teeth. It’s done 3 times. Once from the base of the tongue towards the tip of the tongue as shown in the illustration. After scraping the center, gently repeat on the left and then the right of the tongue. The debris that comes out is spit out and the mouth is rinsed. Scraping the tongue in this fashion has scientifically shown to reduce bacterial load in the oral cavity. Bacteria such as lactobacilli, and streptococci, which give bad odor in the mouth and also responsible for certain systemic diseases are significantly reduced. Another important observation in children who do regular tongue scraping, suffer less from incidents of dental cavities.

By regularly scraping the tongue one can experience clarity in speech, and an ability to freely communicate. It is very interesting that this simple routine can have a positive impact on our well being. I hope you are inspired to do tongue scraping on a daily basis. It will undoubtedly give you the ability to make mindful healthy food choices, and also a clear speech.

At Athreya – letsallbehealthy.com, we really want every one to be happy and content. Our custom-made silver tongue scrapers are made with great care and precision to get results as promised by Ayurveda.

Why Silver?

Silver is an excellent anti bacterial, anti viral and anti fungal element. It prevents over growth of organisms that produce bad breath. Ayurveda has long advocated use of silver tongue scrapers for cleansing and preventing oral diseases. It balances the PITTA (fire or heat energy), which controls digestion and metabolism

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