In Hinduism, food is categorized into Tamasic, Rajasic, Sattvic, or combination of them. What does these categories signify? Can anyone consume food from any of these categories?

Are there any restrictions on which types of food to be used in offerings and prayer?

  • I am positive the divission of fertilized eggs as tamas and unfertilized as rajas is from Manu smrti, The Laws of Manu. As far as scriptural basis goes.
    – user3312
    Jul 13, 2015 at 20:02
  • In nutshell, "Tamas" = Stale/Preserved food, "Rajas" = Tasty/Stimulating food, "Satvik" = Fresh/Healthy food.
    – iammilind
    Aug 5, 2015 at 5:06
  • You can ask Ayurveda related questions here: area51.stackexchange.com/proposals/102499/ayurveda Sep 1, 2016 at 22:57

1 Answer 1


There are Three types of Guna

1. Sattva (the quality of goodness): Sattva is Calm, Saintly. Its brings up quality that allows spiritual holiness, forgiveness and submission to God. Foods dear to those in the mode of goodness increase the duration of life, purify one’s existence and give strength, health, happiness and satisfaction. Such foods are juicy, fatty, wholesome, and pleasing to the heart. BG reference

2. Raja (the quality of passion): Foods that are too bitter, too sour, salty, hot, pungent, dry and burning are dear to those in the mode of passion. Such foods cause distress, misery and disease. Onions and garlic fall into this category.BG reference

3. Tamas (the quality of ignorance): Food prepared more than three hours before being eaten, food that is tasteless, decomposed and putrid, and food consisting of remnants and untouchable things is dear to those in the mode of darkness.BG reference

We are what we eat, so you see. When you see the whole picture in Gunas perspective it will start making sense altogether. Why we can't eat certain types of foods, why we do not use some types of food in our Pujas (rituals or worship).

In order to be a saint/God's servant, humans must suppress raja and tamas guna, and eating sattvic food is a large part of that.

  • 1
    Please append your information to the community wiki above instead of creating a new one. The purpose of this Q&A is to have one canonical answer to the question instead of several scattered ones. Thank you! :)
    – Akshay
    Sep 5, 2014 at 13:21
  • Please update the BG reference links. Giving Page not found error.
    – gangadhars
    Sep 1, 2015 at 4:04

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .