Ayurveda healthcare is a highly individualized practice. It states- every individual has a specific constitution ( Prakriti), that determines an individual physical, physiological, mental character, and disease vulnerability. Constitution (Prakriti) is determined by three basic doshas or energies present in every individual in a particular ratio. Out of these energies, one or two energies in every individual are predominant. Ayurveda provides deep knowledge that enables you to know your body doshas. Once you are able to know your body doshas- you can adopt measures as suggested in Ayurveda to lead a healthy life.
What is the scope of Ayurveda?
Ayurveda was described in sacred Hindu texts – Vedas, many centuries ago, as a holistic healing system- for all living beings. Over the years it is being used for treating ailing humanity. W.H.O. Recognises Ayurveda as traditional medicine. It is being widely practiced in the Indian subcontinent for centuries. More than 90% of Indians use Ayurveda in some form or another. It is gaining popularity in the western world also.
Ayurveda can be seen as one of the most visible faces of alternative medicine practiced throughout the world. App. 60% to 80% of the world population depends on traditional medicine. Western countries App. 40% ( U.K.) 80% (Germany) yearly consults a practitioner of traditional medicine. World over the segment that is growing with the fastest pace is- naturals. For more reading- Ayurveda- Re-emerging as a reliable healing system.<<= Click here.
What are body Doshas?
Doshas is a Sanskrit term- meaning of which can be translated as “that which can cause a problem”. Doshas or energies are a type of life force present in your body that determines your biological and psychological characteristics. Five elements ( air, space, water, fire, and earth) present in nature combine to form three doshas- Vata, Pitta, and Kapha. Vata consists of mostly- space and air. Pitta is made up of fire and water, and Kapha is composed of earth and water.
The three doshas are present in unique combinations in every individual. No two individuals have the same energy or doshas patterns. In the physical body- Vata is the subtle energy of movement, Pitta is the energy of digestion and metabolism and Kapha is the energy that forms body structure.
In terms of physical body types, the three Doshas loosely correspond to the three western terms- Ectomorph- Vata, Mesomorph- Pitta, and Endomorph- Kapha. However, unlike western terms, these Doshas types apply to both body and mind.
Know your body Doshas
Every individual has a unique Doshas pattern. As you move through life, many factors like- environment, diet, lifestyle, etc. may cause fluctuations in your pattern of Doshas. Which can affect your physical, mental, and emotional health. Therefore it is important to know your body doshas and follow the guidelines given in Ayurveda to retain the original balance- to lead a healthy life in a natural way.
Vata can be considered- the leader of all Doshas. It can mimic Pitta and Kapha. It governs the movement, breathing, and blood circulation. People with Vata are usually tall, thin, and find it difficult to gain body weight. Vata people possess a long and slim body with prominent bone structure and a quick light gait. They have irregular sleeping and eating patterns. They are more sensitive to cold in comparison to other body types.
Vata people are generally emotional and their mood changes quickly. They are quick learners and talkative. Their decision-making ability is slow. They are enthusiastic and vivacious. People with predominant Vata energy are considered to be lively, creative, original thinkers.
Vata imbalance may lead to digestive problems- gas and bloating, dry skin, constipation, and joint pains. Due to the imbalance of Vata Dosha, you may have an unfocused mind, which may lead to anxiety and depression.
Balancing Vata Dosha:-
To regain the balance of Vata Dosha adopting a regular sleeping and eating pattern may be helpful. Staying warm as per the season, listening to calming music, adopting exercise which focuses on flexibility and balance like- yoga, Tai chi, and aerobics are beneficial for Vata imbalance.
Diet for Vata Dosha:-
Low-fat dairy products, olive oil, rice, wheat, nuts, cooked vegetables, spices, and sweet fruits as per season are good for Vata types. However, beans, barley, corn, sprouts, cabbage, raw vegetables should be avoided.
Pitta energy controls the digestive and endocrine systems and is linked to fire. People with predominant Pitta dosha are considered fiery in temperament, fast-paced and intelligent. They are excellent decision-makers and are highly determined. They are good speakers and teachers. They possess a well-defined body, symmetrical features, and good muscle tone. They can easily gain or lose weight.
Pitta-type people are intelligent, fast-paced, remain focused on their goals, efficient, and are ready to face challenges. They are outspoken and direct. They are stubborn and are intolerant towards disagreements.
On getting balance disturbed, Pitta-type people become argumentative, short-tempered. The imbalance of Pitta dosha may cause- ulcers, inflammation, digestive problems, anger, heartburn, arthritis, etc.
Balancing- Pitta Dosha:-
To regain the balance of Pitta dosha, it is necessary to make changes, that are calming and stabilizing. A balance between the rest and activity is required. You can spend time outside in a natural environment and indulge yourself in joyful activities.
Diet for Pitta Dosha:-
The suitable diet for Pitta-type is dairy products, wheat, barley, rice, and sweet fruits. Cooling foods like- coriander, cilantro, cardamom, saffron, and fennel may also help. Pitta dominant people should avoid hot spices, sour and acidic fruits.
Kapha energy is linked to earth and water. It is believed to control growth, strength and is linked to the chest, torso, and back. People with predominant Kapha Dosha are considered calm, strong, and solid in the constitution. They generally possess smooth skin and big eyes and have the tendency to hold on to excessive weight. They use to eat lesser but heavier meals. They have a slow metabolism. They use to sleep soundly and peacefully.
Kapha- type people are loyal, strong, patient, and caring. They make faithful friends and enjoy life in their comfort zone. Generally, they are resistant to change and remain protective of their routine.
The Kapha imbalance may cause excessive sleep, overweight, fluid retention, asthma, sinus problems, gall bladder issues, and diabetes. They often face depression, due to their tendency to form unproductive or destructive relationships.
Balancing- Kapha Dosha:-
To regain balance for Kapha dominant people, they need motivation. They should adopt regular exercise. Stimulating aromas and bright colors may help.
Diet for Kapha Dosha:-
Food like- beans, ginger, honey, light fruits like- strawberries, peaches, cantaloupe, etc., and most vegetables can be helpful. Foods to be avoided may include- heavy fruits, dairy products, nuts, oats, rice, wheat, and sweeteners other than honey.
What are the factors that may cause an imbalance in body doshas?
Common factors that affect the balance of energies are stress, unhealthy diet, weather, and strained relationships. Following are the few factors that may cause an imbalance in body doshas.
- Insufficient sleep.
- Fear, grief, worry, stress
- Exessive mental activity, exercise, or sex.
- Suppression of natural urges.
- Irregular daily routine.
- Injuries, surgery, childbirth, or old age.
- Insufficient food, caffiene.
- Excessive talking, over-exertion.
- Hot spicy, salty, and sour food.
- Anger, hatred, jealousy, passion.
- Alcohol, tobacco, caffeine.
- Summertime exposure to heat, or mid-day sun.
- Sleeping during the day time or excessive sleep.
- Lack of exercise.
- Lack of mental activity.
- Heavy, oily, sweet, sour and salty food.
It is believed that understanding a patient’s energies and constitution- can determine the patient’s risk of developing certain diseases. For treatment, please consult your healthcare provider. He may suggest individualized treatments and diet plans to help you regain the balance of your body doshas.
Wishing all to be in a healthy state.
For awareness purpose only.
Get our new blogs regarding healthy living and Ayurveda delivered to your inbox.
40+ Years of experience in the healthcare industry.