Everything you want to know about Ayurveda Part 3

Apr 10 , 2019

Everything you want to know about Ayurveda Part 3

Balancing the Doshas   In the previous blog, everything you want to know about Ayurveda Part 2, we talked about the characteristics of each Dosha body type (Vata, Pitta and Kapha). After reading the article, you would have got some idea about what characteristics you have, and your Dosha type. But you may also find a mix of characteristics, and that is called as Dual Dosha Prakriti. Pure Dosha prakriti is less common, but considered better than dual Dosha type. There is also a possibility of Tridosha Prakriti, which is the rarest but the best of all. It consists of equal characteristics of Vata, Pitta and Kapha. Whatever may be the Dosha type, they must be balanced for a healthy and happy being. Dosha balance is maintained by both, the diet and the lifestyle guidelines given by Ayurveda. Let’s know in detail, the ways to create a balance of Dosha, for harmony, health and happiness. Diet for Dosha Balance To know the right diet for you, you should understand the six tastes. The six tastes of food are derived from the five elements, ether, air, fire, water, and earth. The taste chosen can either strengthen the doshas or reduce their effect. Ayurveda recommends that we should have all six tastes, sweet, sour, salty, pungent, bitter and astringent in every meal, to make it nutritious and satisfying. How is the taste related to Dosha? Check the following pointers, indicating the relation between the six tastes, their respective element combinations and the effect on Dosha: Sweet - Earth and Water (Increases Kapha, decreases Vata and Pitta) Sour - Earth and Fire (Increases Pitta and Kapha, decreases Vata) Pungent - Fire and Air (Increases Vata and Pitta, decreases Kapha) Bitter - Air and Space/ Ether (Increases Vata, decreases Pitta and Kapha) Salty - Water and Fire (Increases Pitta and Kapha, decreases Vata) Astringent - Air and Earth (Increases Vata, decreases Pitta and Kapha) With the readable display of 6 tastes and their effect on Dosha, each one of us can make the right food choices. As stated in previous blog, each Dosha is a combination of two elements, out of the five basic elements or Earth. The remaining three elements need to be added from the food, to create the right balance. Balancing the Three Doshas with Diet and Lifestyle To maintain proper balance of your own unique combination of Doshas, follow the practices stated below: Balancing Vata Vata is indicative of air or movement. When imbalanced, Vata disturbs mind and body with unpredictable appetite, restlessness, constipation, insomnia, etc. Many individuals prefer unorganized routine, but Vata influenced constitution require a person to be organized, follow a pattern, maintain stability in mind. SIGNS OF VATA IMBALANCE

  • Constipation, gas, bloating, hard stools
  • Disturbed sleep
  • Feeling of nervousness and anxiety
  • Spastic twitches
  • dry or chapped skin
  • low body weight
Follow this routine – DIET
  • Follow a Vata-pacifying diet - If you eat more aerated foods and the food tasting pungent, bitter or astringent, then it will aggravate or imbalance your Vata Dosha. To balance, you should eat food consisting of the remaining three elements like earth, water and fire, i.e. food that is sweet, sour and salty.
  • Eat freshly prepared warm food and warm beverages. Avoid raw or gas-forming vegetables (cabbage, broccoli, cauliflower etc.)
  • Consume oil and ghee more liberally.
  • Avoid alcohol, coffee and chocolate (except dark/ raw ones); instead have hot milk with cardamom before bed.
LIFESTYLE
  • Sleep early by 10 PM
  • Practice Meditation and Pranayama
  • Moderate exercise, not excessive, like walk and yoga is good
  • Abhyanga or self-massage with sesame oil
  • Nasya with sesame oil
Balancing Pitta Pitta is indicative of metabolism and transformation. When imbalanced, Pitta Dosha causes excessive heat and acidity in body, resulting in temper, indigestion, fever and skin rashes. Pitta-influenced constitution need to calm down and not take things too seriously. SIGNS OF PITTA IMBALANCE  
  • Acidity and burning sensations in stomach
  • Hormonal imbalances like Infertility, menopausal symptoms
  • Sweat, hot flushes
  • Urinary tract infection and other inflammations
  • Headaches
  • Nose bleeding, Piles, etc.
  • Burning Eye and other related disorders
Follow this routine – DIET
  • Follow a Pitta-pacifying diet – Prefer cooling food, beverages and spices like coriander, cardamom, fennel, etc. Avoid canned food. Eat freshly prepared food, avoiding chili, pepper, vinegar, etc.
  • Stay away from excess alcohol, tobacco, caffeinated beverages and chocolate (except dark/ raw ones). Have warm milk before bed time.
  • Drink copper charged water, especially in the mornings.
LIFESTYLE
  • Sleep before 10 PM, avoiding the screen time in the last hours.
  • Have relaxed time with children, friends and family.
  • Exercise such as swimming, skiing, cycling and walking are good, but avoid overheating.
  • Avoid exposure to mid-day sun.
  • Practice Mediation and Pranayama
  • Abhyanga self-massage with coconut oil and olive oil
  • Nasya with ghee or sesame oil
  Balancing Kapha Kapha indicates structure. When imbalanced, Kapha causes issues related to accumulation, such as lethargy, obesity, slow digestion, cold, cough and depression. Kapha-influenced constitution needs mental and physical stimulation and activity to stay in balance. SIGNS OF KAPHA IMBALANCE
  • The body gains weight or becomes obese, which is a result of slow and sluggish digestion of food.
  • An occurrence of Water retention and swelling in the body.
  • Increased frequency of cold, congestion or cough.
  • The increased sugar level in the body which results in diabetes.
  • Increased cholesterol and triglycerides level in the body.
  • Feeling lethargic is very common sign of Kapha because of heavy, slow and dull qualities of Kapha.
Follow this routine – DIET
  • Follow a Kapha-pacifying diet. Eat hot, non-oily food; sip warm beverages, intake hot spices like ginger, cinnamon, bay leaf, etc.
  • Start your day with honey in warm water.
  • Avoid too much sweet, even in drinks. Try to keep one day liquid fast every week.
  • Eat when you are hungry. Have a light dinner, at least 3-4 hours before bedtime.
LIFESTYLE
  • Wake up by 6 AM
  • Do rigorous exercise, walk briskly, and take breaks if you are sitting for long
  • Do brain storming activities
  • Practice Mediation and Pranayama
  • Nasya with sesame oil.
How to Balance Your Dosha More about the problem diagnosis in “Everything you want to know about Ayurveda – Part 4”.