AYURVEDIC DOSHAS SIMPLIFIED
By Pip Atherstone-Reid
Doshas are the force or energies that create the physical body and mind. They determine conditions of growth, aging, health and disease. We are born with Doshas called Prikruti (our constitution) and then the Doshas that are aggravated by our lifestyle and diet; called Vikruti. In selecting the right nutritional plan, we are attempting to pacify the Vikruti and bring balance back to the Prikruti. But simply, a person can be one or a combination of the three types and by understanding the different aspects of your Doshas, you can live, exercise, practice yoga and eat accordingly to create great health.
Ayurveda identifies six major flavours that should be eaten in balance to maintain health; pungent, sour, bitter, sweet, salty, astringent. They can also be used to balance the Doshas:
If you are Vata dominant; sweet, salty and sour foods will pacify you. Sweet, astringent and bitter foods pacify Pitta and pungent, bitter and astringent foods pacify Kapha.
Moderation and balance is the key to life, when choosing your foods and flavours, all 6 should be present on the plate with each meal. The quantity and balance of the flavours are determined by your predominant Doshas.
As a general rule everyone should be eating meals that are warming, easily digestible and medium to light and very slightly oily. We start here and make adjustments according to the Dosha we are trying to balance.
Pip Atherstone-Reid is the co-founder and co-owner of Kundalini House and has been an Acupuncture and TCM practitioner for over 15 years. She is available for Acupuncture & TCM appointments on Tuesdays and Thursdays.
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