Retreat Cuisine: Nutritional Wisdom



The profoundly healing retreat environment is greatly enhanced by Nirvana's Ayurvedic cuisine that is made from natural foods, natural spring water, and is healthy and delicious. It's real food, not chemical or temporary nourishment, prepared with true love.
Our team in the kitchen thinks beyond raw foods, sugar and salt and plays with the flavour palate of whole foods, zesty or bitter herbs, subtle spices and bright colours to create mouth-watering, scrumptious recipes, prepared from scratch, for breakfast, lunch and dinner. We understand and work with the six tastes for both enjoyment and health. Using taste as a tool to come back into balance is what Ayurvedic medicine and the wisdom practices of India teach us. This forms an integral part of your therapy and treatment. 
Retreat meals at Nirvana Wellness Sanctuary are sourced from seasonal, local, and organically grown (wherever possible) produce. The meals are primarily vegan, however, to balance the meal, we could serve yoghurt, butter, white cheese and raw milk. Pure Nirvana spring water is used in all our cooking, which is also available at each meal, and all through the day. If and when we use eggs they are sourced from our own free ranging chickens.
Retreat meals are self-serve, satisfying, and over the day you will be eating a variety of grains, legumes, vegetables, fruit, nut/seed/herb butters, salads, dressings, condiments, chutneys and dessert for a complete balanced vegetarian meal. Everything is home made to feed your body, mind and spirit, and bursting with properties which protect against the imbalances that can led to cancer, cardiovascular disease, diabetes, constipation and other chronic conditions. Recipes and Ayurvedic information about your body type can be found in Shantiji's books entitled 'Food for Life' and 'Ayurvedic Cooking'.

Sample menu may include a selection from some of the following:

Please note: The below menu does not reflect an Ayurvedic detox menu which consists of a strict diet tailored to suit each individual, and portion control.

Dawn water

A hot infusion of fresh ginger root and a dash of lemon in Nirvana's spring water, and a sliver of aloe vera start your day. 

Nirvana breakfast:

  • Creamy oat, millet, quinoa or rice porridge, sweetened naturally with dates
  • Unpasteurised milk cooked Ayurvedically.
  • Raw organic honey
  • Toast and bread
  • Home-made, fresh nut butter and fruit spreads
  • Selection of herbal teas

Nirvana lunch - the main meal of the day

  • Freshly steamed basmati rice or long grain basmati brown. 
  • Mouth watering lentils cooked in a delicious homemade sauce with mild spices, tomatoes and fresh herbs. 
  • Seasonal and nutritious gourmet vegetables. Just the smell of our vegetables will make you hungry.
  • Healthy and refreshing salads are served with our very own home-made dressing.
  • Home-made chutneys and pickles such as sweet mango, or date and tamarind, or lime or chilli pickle. 
  • Naturally sweetened fruit compote.

Nirvana Dinner - is light, supper would be more worthy a name

  • Light yet hearty vegetable soups served with crispy toast and butter.

Nirvana Desserts

  • Gourmet fresh fruit salad with home-made cashew cream 
  • Sticky date pudding
  • Divine fresh fruit sorbets
  • Melt in your mouth home-made cupcakes
  • Apple strudel with fresh vanilla cream or dairy-free nut cream
  • Coconut, ginger, vanilla or almond milk fudge (burfi)
  • and much more.

Nirvana Beverages

  • Premium herbal, fruit, organic and black tea
  • Pure spring water
  • Nirvana special blend chai
  • Fresh juices

Our Goal

Our goal is to enhance your individual immune systems to such a degree that your body becomes its own best physician. We avoid stimulants such as coffee, chocolate or alcohol. If you consume these, try to reduce your intake of them, so that a few days before you come you have eliminated them altogether. This will help you avoid withdrawal symptoms during your stay at retreat.

Need advice on personalising your diet to suit your body type?
Our Ayurvedic health professionals can provide dietary advice to suit your individual Ayurvedic constitution to help you address too much wind, or too much acid or fluid retention, eliminate contraindicated foods and favour fresh, wholesome and nourishing foods. Please donate any consumables you bring along with you to the kitchen. To enjoy the rewards of being fit and healthy, you need to eat properly. 

About Shantiji

Shanti Gowans is the globally recognised author and founder of Shanti Yoga™, Meditation and Ayurveda for the self, family and community.

Shantiji has brought the concepts and practices of a healthy body and a still mind to thousands of Australians through her Yoga and Meditation programs on national television... Read more about Shantiji's biography

India-Nepal Tour

Travel with Shanti & Peter Gowans this November for a trip of a lifetime. 

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