Ayurveda is an ancient Indian science of medicine. It follows the principles of health and disease prevention through the study of physiology and pathology, combating different illnesses with diet, herbal remedies, cleansing therapies, exercise and meditation.

The basic concept is based on the doshas, or body constitutions. There are three primary body types (Vata, Pitta and Kapha) and they are comprised of the five elements in nature (air, space, fire, water and earth).

They are broken down as follows:

Vata – air/space (“wind”)

Pitta – water/fire (“bile”)

Kapha – earth/water (“phlegm”)

Most people are a combination of two or three doshas, one being the dominant dosha.

According to Ayurveda, when a body is not in balance, when there is disturbance to the dosha—that is, if it is either too weak or too intense—we are prone to illness and disease. The goal is to maintain equilibrium (i.e., optimum health) in the dosha, through a personalized regimen based on correct diet, lifestyle, vocation, environment, mental state and spiritual practice. Physiology, psychology, astrology, and genetics also come into play.

There are several ways to discover your dosha, from online quizzes, which instantly reveal your dosha, to services provided by Ayurvedic practitioners, which offer detailed tests to determine your dosha. 

Vata

A person with Vata (Air/Space) constitution will have predominant qualities of dry, light, cool, rough, subtle and mobile. Their tendency will be for food that is pungent, bitter and astringent. Vatas usually have lean bodies, their digestion is unpredictable, they may experience dryness, roughness of skin, feel cold easily, are restless, unpredictable, inclined to move, travel.

Pitta

A person with Pitta (Fire/Water) constitution will have predominant qualities of hot, sharp, oily and light. Their tendency will be for food that is pungent, sour and salty. Pittas usually have medium built bodies, they may experience oily skin, get hot easily, have a swift digestion, are quick with a sharp temperament, inclined to be vocal, driven, impulsive.

Kapha

A person with Kapha (Earth/Water) constitution will have predominant qualities of cold, heavy, liquid and unctuous. Their tendency will be for food that is sweet, sour and salty. Kaphas usually have heavy built bodies, a slow digestion, they may experience heaviness, are of calm temperament, slow movement, grounded, contemplative.

To learn more about food that is good for your respective dosha, how to maintain equilibrium through foods, how to prepare favorable foods that will be of benefit to you and your family, enroll in a cooking class!

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