Ayurvedic buttermilk is quite different from the buttermilk you find in the supermarket. Interestingly, Ayurvedic buttermilk is simply diluted, natural yogurt with herbs and spices. This is very easy to make at home, and enjoy its numerous health benefits.
Buttermilk is called Takra in Ayurveda. This recipe has been used over the centuries to restore the digestive system and act as a natural probiotic.
Benefits of Ayurvedic buttermilk
- Easy to digest, it has astringent and sour tastes which mitigate Kapha and Vata.
- It is used for the treatment of inflammation, digestive disorders, lack of appetite, spleen and liver problems and anemia.
- It kindles the digestive fire and helps in the elimination of Ama (metabolic toxins).
- Also known as “nectar” for human beings, there is a saying, whereas “Nectar is for god, buttermilk is for human beings.”
As referenced in: Charaka Samhita Sutra Sthana (27:229), the Ayurveda Doctor prescribes Takra for the following health conditions:
- Sopha (edema)
- Arshas (hemorrhoids)
- Grahani (Irritable bowel syndrome or mal-absorption syndrome)
- Udar roga (disorders of the stomach)
- Aruchi (anorexia)
- Pandu roga (liver disease or anemia)
Ayurvedic Buttermilk is easy to prepare:
Servings – 1 cup
- ¼ cup fresh natural yogurt
- ¾ cup purified cold water
- ¼ tsp. cumin powder
- ¼ tsp. green coriander leaf
- 1 pinch of rock salt or black salt
- Place the fresh natural yogurt in the blender and blend for 3-5 minutes. Add the water, and blend again on low speed for another 2 minutes.
- Gently remove the fatty foam or butter layer from the top of the mixture if there is any visible.
- Add all the three spices/herbs mentioned above and stir by hand, briefly, just enough to mix the spices evenly.
- Serve at room temperature. This is best served with lunch as it aids digestion.
Ayurvedic Buttermilk is not lassi.
Most of us often confuse buttermilk for lassi. Available in Indian restaurants, lassi is often sweetened with sugar, jaggery and sweet fruits, like mango.
From an Ayurvedic point of view, buttermilk is a lighter drink than lassi; it does not increase Kapha. In Ayurveda, there is a concept of incompatible food combinations. For example, milk products are incompatible with fruits. Mango lassi (fruit + diary) may be Indian, but it’s not Ayurvedic. For regular use, Ayurvedic spiced buttermilk is by far a better medicinal than sweetened lassi.
As buttermilk is considered “hot”, it is best avoided in summer, or by people who have suffered any trauma or injury. It is not recommended for people sensitive to, or allergic to, lactose/dairy products.