Jan 27, 2015


AMA (Toxic Material) It is commonly known that any type of engine or mechanism which burns fuel leaves a residue. We also know that if these residues are not cleaned from the engine or machine it won’t run properly and if left to build up it will cause the engine to eventually break down. AMA is a similar substance created from the transformation of food.


We have to use this Sanskrit word AMA because there isn’t an equivalent English word. A means nearer and ma means poison, therefore a literal translation is poison near or within. 

Understanding The concept of AMA is key to achieving optimum health. Ayurveda is the only system which recognizes this type of toxin and addresses it directly. All types of ayurvedic treatments are geared towards the elimination of AMA first and foremost. Unless AMA is cleared from the system there is no hope to cure disease or to achieve and maintain health. 

There are colonics and cleansing methods available which only cleanse the colon and do not address toxins deeply rooted in the tissues and at a cellular level. This is where ayurveda is different. Cleansing the colon can be weakening to the system because waste products have a function and to simply clean them out of the body can create more problems than it solves. Ayurveda has a systematic method of preparing the body and drawing out the toxins from the tissues before eliminating them followed by a period of recover or rejuvenation This treatment is called pancha karma meaning five and karma meaning actions.

So what is AMA exactly? It can be defined as a toxic material created in the digestive tract from undigested food. The body cannot absorb it and cannot eliminate it either so a thick slimy material is produced. This is carried by vata  through the system and gets absorbed and trapped in weak areas.

The longer it stays in the body the harder and stickier it becomes and more deeply rooted. It adheres to the inside of channels and blocks them preventing an efficient flow of blood, lymph urine etc. It will appear in many forms. It gets into the joints and causes inflammation and arthritis, it is cholesterol blocking the arteries, tumors, stones in the kidney’s and gall bladder and plaques on the brain interrupting nerve impulses. 


AMA created by undigested food. If you eat continuously, the stomach can be compared to a pot of soup. If you keep adding food to the pot there will be uncooked and cooked food mixed together. Food has to be fully digested before additional food is added, so snacking is very bad for digestion. Hunger is the body’s way of telling us that it is ready to receive more food. 

AMA created by overeating. Obviously if you overload any system it will clog it up and excessive residue will be created.

AMA created by weak digestive fire If the digestive fire is weak for any reason it will not digest food properly. Cold temperatures and water reduce digestive fire so drinking water, especially cold water will put the digestive fire out and create AMA.  

AMA created from food Processed food causes AMA because it contains, additives, preservatives emulsifiers, artificial flavorings, colorings and chemicals of all kinds. The human digestive system and systems of other living beings are not made to digest artificial substances and they create AMA. We know about carcinogens because we can prove certain chemicals cause cancer. Anything which is foreign to the body will cause disease because it creates AMA. 

AMA created in the preparation of food. Microwaving changes the molecular structure of food therefore it is unnatural, and if it is in a plastic container that will add toxins to the food. Aluminum and non-stick cookware adds toxins to the food.

AMA created by meat. Meat is the most indigestible food we can eat mainly because our systems are not designed to digest it, but if on top of that farm animals are fed unnaturally the meat will be toxic and produce AMA.

AMA created by medicines. Nowadays there is more awareness of the poor quality of food so we load up on vitamins and even though there will be some benefit this will also create AMA as does any kind of medication or pill. 

Anything unnatural which the body cannot fully metabolize will cause a problem in the body. The Rishis lived in a time when food and water was completely pure and yet they recognized toxins produced by poor food and eating habits. 

Symptoms of AMA in the system are: heaviness, fatigue, laziness, weakness, excessive salivation, indigestion, anorexia, blockage of the channels, foul smell, slimy secretions and constipation.  

If you always do what you always did.     You always get what you always got.

According To Ayurveda & Yoga - Ann Holaday                                                    

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