Grapes are the best among all the fruits and the most wholesome according to Ayurveda.*
Builds Physical & Mental Strength + Aphrodisiac
The sweet taste (rasa) and post-digestive effect (vipaka) nourish the physiology with strength. Whether it be:
- building tissues and energy for the emaciated and depleted,
- a juicy aphrodisiac, or
- providing mental strength to brush off negativity and mistaken intellect and rise above anxiety or depression.
I like to use Draksadi Kashayam formula - a decoction with grapes + other herbs to boost mental strength in clients.
Drakshadi Aristam can help with alcoholics and since it is a herbalised wine, it may be used as an alternative to regular wine.
Tonify The Essence of Body Tissues (Rasa Dhatu)
Grapes are like white plasma (rasa) and therefore, according to Ayurveda and the principle of “like increases like”, grapes tonify and nourish rasa dhatu (plasma, extracellular fluid and lymph + more tissue substances that can't be translated into western medical terms).
Anti-Oxidant & Blood Health
The rich phytochemical anthocyanin gives (especially red) grapes the ability to eradicate harmful free radicals from cells that can cause oxidative stress, leading to all kinds of chronic illnesses.
This makes it a great blood cleanser and blood builder (balances rakta dhatu).
The antioxidant polyphenolic generates anti-allergic, anti-inflammatory, antimicrobial and anti-cancer activities.
Messaging molecules (such as interleukin) and pro-inflammatory enzymes (like cyclo-oxygenase) that advance inflammation can be defused by grape intake.
It’s unctuousness (snigdha) and liquidity (dravam) helps the elimination of urine and faeces and has a laxative action.
Pacifies Vata Dosha & Respiratory Health
Being tantalisingly sweet and unctuous, it also pacifies vata but not necessarily in the alimentary tract, as it can put out the agni (digestive fire) and is a little hard to digest being so sweet (heaviest taste) and cooling.
It’s secondary taste being bitter also helps respiratory issues like dyspnoea (swasa), hoarse voice, chest injury, tuberculosis and can help mitigate the effects from intoxication and delusion (coma).
Various Types of Grapes
Unripe fruits are sour so become harder to digest and actually aggravate pitta and rakta (the blood).
Seedless grapes (Abija draksa) or grapes with very small seeds are harder to digest and possibly are genetically modified, however they mitigate kapha.
Dried grapes (raisins, sultanas) have a similar effect, are easier to digest but have a higher sugar level so caution with people with high blood sugar. They contain a concentrated source of iron and is an important fruit for anaemic people along with figs, dates, papaya, kiwi and pomegranate.
Additional Health Profile & Benefits
- Grapes are rich in micronutrient minerals like copper and manganese, an essential co-factor of the antioxidant enzyme superoxide dismutase.
- Grapes contain the essential hormone and antioxidant melatonin.
- Grapes contains about 191 mg of the electrolyte potassium per 100 grams.
- Grapes actually have a low glycemic index and help balance blood sugar.
For you pitta people, consider fasting on FRESH grape OR pomegranate juice, one day a week, fortnight or month regularly (on the same day cyclically).
Only Buy Organic!
Grapes are a food that is sprayed heavily with chemicals and pesticides.
This is one of the fruits that you need to stretch a little and only buy organic.
* Astanga Samgraha of Vaghbhata and Bhavaprakasa
Does your experience of grapes match the view that Ayurveda has of them? Comment below 👇