Each dosha is made up of five basic elements — ether (the upper regions of space), air, fire, water and earth — and each person has a unique combination of the three doshas that determines his or her physical and psychological characteristics.
The goal of Ayurvedic practices, including following an appropriate Ayurvedic diet, is to prevent imbalances in the doshas. Imbalances can be due to any combination of an unhealthy lifestyle, nutrient deficiencies, too much or too little physical activity, chronic stress, seasonal fluctuations and toxin exposure.
So, what are the doshas?
Tend to be thin, have smaller bones, not to put weight on easily and struggle with digestion. Known to be creative, open-minded, curious and energetic but also fearful, stressed and “scatter-brained” at times. Vata energy plays a role in essential functions, including mobility, motion, circulation and breathing. Vatas are susceptible to mental obstacles, including fear and grief, and health problems, like neurological disorders, insomnia, arthritis and heart disease.
Tend to have a medium, athletic build and be versatile in terms of putting on weight or muscle. Pitta types are often smart, hard-working, ambitious/driven, competitive but angry and aggressive at times. Pitta energy plays a strong role in metabolic functions, digestion, absorption of nutrients, body temperature and energy expenditure. Pittas are considered vulnerable to problems like overexertion, hypertension, heart disease, infectious diseases and digestive conditions.
Tend to struggle with weight gain and have a bigger, solid build. Known to be grounded, supportive, loving and forgiving but lazy, insecure, envious and sad at times. Kapha energy plays a role in lubrication, fluid balance, nourishment, rest, relaxation, caring for others, reproduction and building strong immune system. Health problems that kapahas may deal with more often include diabetes, cancer, obesity, fluid retention and respiratory illnesses.
Are you a Vata, Pitta or Kapha?
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