Known as our mind-body types, Ayurvedic doshas represent particular elements and patterns of energy found within our spirit â€“ what Ayurvedic dosha are you?
The 5,000 year old system of Ayurveda, a form of natural healing, can trace back its origins to the Vedic culture in India. As an ancient life science it had major influence on neighbouring traditional medicines, such as Tibetan and traditional Chinese medicine, and even made its way across Europe to influence early Greek medicine!
Ayurveda is more than just an ancient recipe for an enriched and healthy life, however.
Ayurveda literally translates to the science of life (Ayur = life, Veda = knowledge)!
As a science of life, Ayurveda offers its followers a symbolic and powerful wisdom designed to help people reach their full and true potential. As much a system as it as a way of life, Ayurveda provides sets of guidelines - ideal for daily and seasonal routines – spanning aspects of behaviour, diet and our earthly senses.
Always reminding us that we are deeply connected to the Universe, Ayurveda helps to bring our health in line and more in balance with the Universe by integrating our mind, body and spirit with the world around us. Thousands of years of knowledge and observations have got to worth a try, surely!
Ayurvedic medicine works under the principle that every single person is a unique entity. No one person is the same and as such treatment for illness and lifestyle choices are made on an individual level.
In Ayurvedic medicine, prevention is the precursor of health. Ayurveda focuses on providing tailored and specific advice on aspects of a person’s emotional and physical health to give them the greatest balance in life.
Ayurveda does not believe in pills and potions. Ailments aren’t cured with antibiotics, but with good dietary health and mindful living.
Ayurveda is based upon the principle that everyone has their own unique energy flow that performs and reacts differently in each individual; each one needs to be treated with a unique set of guidelines. There are 3 energy types of Ayurvedic Prakriti (characteristic personality), known as doshas: Vata, Pitta and Kapha. These are loosely translated as Air, Fire and Earth respectively.
Although there are 3 primary types, they can also be combined in a number of ways. Remember, in Ayurveda every person is unique – these are simply guidelines to help you along the way!
Vata Dosha (Air) – People with a dominant Vata dosha radiate energy that controls our motion – circulation, heartbeat, breathing.
Typical characteristics: light, enthusiastic, thin, changeable and energetic
Balanced Vata: creative with strong energy and vitality
Imbalanced Vata: anxious and fearful, dry skin, insomnia, constipation
Pitta Dosha (Fire) – People with a dominant Pitta dosha have energy that controls the body’s metabolic system – nutrition, absorption, digestion and temperature.
Typical characteristics: a go-getter, intelligent, intense and goal orientated
Balanced Pitta: intelligent and content individual
Imbalanced Pitta: angry and prone to ulcers
Kapha Dosha (Earth) – People with a dominant Kapha dosha have energy that helps to promote growth and maintenance in our body – boosted immune system and moisturised skin.
Typical characteristics – methodical, nurturing, easy-going
Balanced Kapha: Loving, forgiving and stable
Imbalanced Kapha: envious and insecure
The easiest way to discover what Ayurvedic element most resonates with you is to take a simple test! By answering a few questions about your personality, you can understand which dosha type most represents your character. You can then use this body type to reframe your health and wellbeing to something that’s more balanced for you.
Now that you know which dosha most resonates with your being, you can transform aspects of your daily routine and diet to most accommodate it, and create a better mind/body relationship.
Healthy Lifestyle for Vata Types:
Maintenance and balance are key for Vata types. As a Vata type, you love to stick to a routine, so try to eat and sleep at the same time every day.
Food – berries, fruit, nuts, beans, dairy, rice (easily digested, warm, cooked, nourishing)
Exercise – Moderate: Tai chi, walking, yoga, swimming (avoid strenuous activity)
Lifestyle – your weakness comes down to lack of self control. Avoid situations where you’re prone to becoming a little too frantic. Take things at your own pace and don’t rush yourself.
Healthy Lifestyle for Pitta Types:
As a Pitta type you are naturally fiery. In order to balance your Pitta type you need to remain cool to counteract your heat.
Food – fresh vegetables, watery and sweet fruit, salad, dark greens (avoid fried and spicy foods)
Exercise –Competitive: swimming, walking, winter sports, tennis (avoid endurance sports)
Lifestyle – don’t give in to negativity. Make sure to avoid conflict by monitoring your self-control and exhibiting behaviours of honesty, kindness and generosity. Try to avoid overworking yourself, too. And make sure that you stay away from alcohol and tobacco (or else you’ll lose your cool)!
Healthy Lifestyle for Kapha Types:
As a Kapha type, you’re naturally prone to being sluggish and slow-paced. To counteract this, make sure that you are actively seeking new experiences and live a life outdoors.
Food – light, warm, spicy, aromatic flavour, dark greens (avoid oily and processed foods)
Exercise – Endurance: long distance running, football, rowing, aerobic activity (build up your stamina or risk lack of motivation)
Lifestyle – Be open to change or risk setting yourself back in life. Enhance your lifestyle by being active and joining the wider community. Failure to do so may make you prone to depression and weight gain.
What Ayurvedic type are you? Do you follow your Ayurvedic guidelines or do you like to mix it up? Let us know in the comment section!
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