Balance Your Dosha Through Ayurveda

What Charaka Samhita Sutrasthana, says about TRIDOSHA in the 20th Chapter (Maharoga Adhyaya):

चत्वारोरोगाभवन्ति- आगन्तुवातपित्तश्लेष्मनिमित्ताः; तेषांचतुर्णामपिरोगाणांरोगत्वमेकविधंभवति, रुक्सामान्यात्; द्विविधापुनःप्रकृतिरेषाम्, आगन्तुनिजविभागात्; द्विविधंचैषामधिष्ठानं, मनःशरीरविशेषात्; विकाराःपुनरपरिसङ्ख्येयाः, प्रकृत्यधिष्ठानलिङ्गायतनविकल्पविशेषापरिसङ्ख्येयत्वात् ||३||

catvārorogābhavanti- āgantu vāta pitta śleṣma nimittāḥ; teṣāṃ caturṇāmapi rogāṇāṃ rogatvamekavidhaṃ bhavati, ruksāmānyāt; dvividhā punaḥ prakṛtireṣām, āgantu nija vibhāgāt; dvividhaṃ caiṣām adhiṣṭhānaṃ, manaḥ śarīra viśeṣāt; vikārāḥ punaraparisaṅkhyeyāḥ, prakṛtyadhiṣṭhāna liṅgāyatana vikalpa viśeṣāparisaṅkhyeyatvāt ||3||

Before reading this post, request you to please read my earlier article for basic understanding on DOSHA, Body Types etc. Click here.

 

There are four types of diseases
  • Vata imbalance disorders – Vatika (Sanskrit)
  • Pitta imbalance disorders – Paittika (Sanskrit)
  • Kapha imbalance disorders – Shlaishmika (Sanskrit)
  • Exogenous causes such as injury, poison etc, – Agantuja (Sanskrit)
    Diseases are again of two types depending on their nature

a) Exogenous (Agantuja) (Sanskrit)
b) Endogenous ( Nija) (Sanskrit)

Endogenous diseases (Nija Roga) again are two types: –

Samanyaja Vyadhi – diseases caused by Vata, Pitta and Kapha in different combinations and
Nanatmaja Vyadhi – specific diseases caused by individual Doshas – Vata, Pitta and Kapha.

 

Diseases caused by individual Doshas –

Vata when imbalanced alone, causes 81 types of disorders
Pitta when imbalanced alone, causes 40 types of disorders
Kapha when imbalanced alone, causes 20 types of disorders

 

For the list of the diseases, please click the link.

 

Depending on the sites of manifestations (body/mind), diseases are classified again into two: –

a) Somatic / body (Shareera Adhishtana)
b) Psychic / mind (Mano Adhishtana)

 

Physiological sites of Doshas in the body:
Place of Vata Dosha –

बस्तिः पुरीषाधानं कटिः सक्थिनी पादावस्थीनि पक्वाशयश्च वातस्थानानि, तत्रापि पक्वाशयो विशेषेण वातस्थानं;
bastiḥ purīṣādhānaṃ kaṭiḥ sakthinī pādāvasthīni pakvāśayaśca vātasthānāni, tatrāpi pakvāśayo viśeṣeṇa vātasthānaṃ;

  • Urinary bladder, urinary system (Basti) (Sanskrit)
  • Rectum, Pureeshaadhaana (Sanskrit)
  • Waist, Sakthi (Sanskrit)
  • Thighs, legs, (Padau) (Sanskrit)
  • Bones (Asthi) (Sanskrit)
  • Colon (Pakvashaya) (Sanskrit) are the sites of Vata
    Among them, Pakvashaya (colon) is the most important site.

 

Place of Pitta Dosha –

स्वेदो रसो लसीका रुधिरमामाशयश्च पित्तस्थानानि, तत्राप्यामाशयो विशेषेण पित्तस्थानम्;
svedo raso lasīkā rudhiramāmāśayaśca pittasthānāni, tatrāpyāmāśayo viśeṣeṇa pittasthānam;

  • Sweat- Svedo (Sanskrit)
  • End product of food digestion, containing all nutrients (Rasa – Rasa dhatu) (Sanskrit)
  • Lymph (Lasika) (Sanskrit)
  • Blood, (Rudhira) (Sanskrit)
  • Stomach, (Amashaya), (lower part of Amashaya) are the sites of pitta (Sanskrit)

Among them, stomach (lower part of Amashaya) is the most important site of Pitta Dosha.

 

Place of Kapha Dosha –

उरः शिरो ग्रीवा पर्वाण्यामाशयो मेदश्च श्लेष्मस्थानानि, तत्राप्युरो विशेषेण श्लेष्मस्थानम्||८||
uraḥ śiro grīvā parvāṇyāmāśayo medaśca śleṣmasthānāni, tatrāpyuro viśeṣeṇa śleṣmasthānam||8||

  • Chest (Ura)
  • Head (Shira)
  • Neck (Greeva)
  • Joint- (Parva)
  • Stomach- Amashaya (upper part of Amashaya)
  • Fat (Meda) are the sites of Shleshma (Kapha)

Among them, chest is the most important site of Kapha Dosha.

 

Now, how can you balance your Dosha sitting at home?

Precaution is always better than cure. If you can balance your diet, you can win over your imbalanced Dosha.

Below is the list of wholesome diet and unwholesome diet for specific Dosha Imbalanced Type.

A. Ayurveda Vata Diet – What To Take And What To Avoid For Vata

Slightly oily and unctuous food stuff, sweet, salt and sour tasting food stuff, food articles that are neither heavy nor light to digest, hot food items are usually advised.

Sweet and sour grapes – Both balance Vata dosha.
Wheat – wheat is sweet, coolant, oily and aphrodisiac in nature. It strengthens the body and balances Vata.
Black gram – is aphrodisiac, oily, hot, sweet, heavy to digest, improves body strength and balances Vata Dosha.
Sesame seeds – is oily and hot in nature.
Rooster and Fish – is good for balancing Vata due to its hot nature, sweet taste and oiliness qualities.
Mango – Sweet mango fruit balances Vata Dosha. Being rich in fibers, it clears bowels and regularizes normal path of Vata Dosha.
Onion – Apart from balancing vata, it also improves strength and vigor. (Harate kevalam Vaatam balaveeryakaro guruhu | – Bhavaprakasha)
Garlic – Balances Vata (Vataghna – Charaka Samhita)
Saffron –  Balances Kapha and vata (shleshma sameera jit – Dhanvantari Nighantu)
Betel leaf – Balances vata and kapha
cinnamon – Balances kapha and vata
sugar cane – It calms Vata, Sugarcane does kidney bladder cleanse
long pepper –  Balances vata and kaphavata and kapha
ginger – Balances vata and kapha
Curd
Buttermilk – It is a very good habit for people with Vata body type to consume Buttermilk regularly
Butter
Tamarind – Usually sour tasting herbs and fruits balance Vata
Almond – Badam – known as Vatada in Ayurveda, is mainly for the treatment of nerve disorder, general debility, to improve the memory power and increase the sexual vigor.
Tintideeka – Rhus parviflora
Hedge Mustard
Poppy seeds, Pomegranate
Jaggery
Sesame seed and sesame oil
Linseed
(Uma)

Diet tip: People with Vata body type should not leave the stomach empty. Fasting is not advisable to them.

Avoid:
Cow-pea  (Rajamasha)
Peanut
Indian bean / Lablab bean
Pigeon pea (Cajanus cajan) – Adhaki – Arhar dal / toor dal
Water lily
Parpataka – Fumaria parviflora
Fox nut
Agastya – flower of Sesbania grandiflora
Flower of Asana – Pterocarpus santalinus

 

B. Ayurveda Pitta Diet – What to Take and What to Avoid for Pitta
Pitta diet:
Butter

Jack fruit (ripe)
Moth bean is coolant, useful in nasal bleeding, heavy periods, sweet in taste.
Lotus – lotus seed and stalk is used in preparation of sambar / rasam. A garland of lotus is also advised to calm Pitta.
Sugarcane – It calms Pitta, it also does kidney bladder cleanse.
Pointed guard (paraval) –  its fruit is used in Indian cooking. it is also good for liver.
Date (kharjoora) – Dates used daily is good for calming pitta.
Fennel seeds – Apart from calming Pitta, it is also a good natural mouth freshener herb.
Grapes – Do you know “Draksha phalottamaa!” – Of all the fruits, Draksha (grapes) is the best!.
Neem leaves – It is a common practice to chew neem leaves in some Indians, apart from calming Pitta, it also improves food taste and is good for skin.
Turmeric – Using turmeric in regular cooking is very good. Its anti- cancer property is scientifically proven,
Rose – Rose water, rose petals are excellent to calm Pitta. It is also helpful in reducing acidity
Coriander – Coriander is excellent natural cleanser
Cucumber – its face pack is also equally good for Pitta body type.
Amla remedy – Another way to take Amla powder for Pitta is to take it along with jaggery.
Coconut and coconut oil – good for both Pitta and stomach. 

As a general rule, all sweet tasting food substances are Pitta pacifying in nature. Sweet apple, sweet grapes, Apricots, sweet Berries, Guava, ripe sweet mangoes, water melon, Papaya, sweet orange, Pears, Plums (sweet), Prunes
Ripe Falsa fruit
Water chestnut
Shringataka – Trapa bispinosa
Yuthika – Juhi – Jasminum auriculatum:

VEGETABLES In general sweet, astringent and bitter vegetables – Asparagus, cooked beets, carrot, green beans, Corn (fresh) Cucumber, Dandelion, Kale Lettuce, Parsley, sweet Potatoes, Pumpkin, Taro root, Wheatgrass, sprouts,

GRAINS Barley Cereal, Granola, Oats, Pancakes, Rice (basmati, white, wild), Spelt Sprouted, wheat bread (essene), Tapioca, DAIRY Butter, Cheese, Cottage cheese,
LEGUMES – Black beans, Kidney beans, Mung beans, Mung dal, Pinto beans, Soybeans Soy cheese, Soy milk, Tofu, White beans NUTS – Almonds (soaked and peeled)
SEEDS – Halva, Psyllium, Sunflower
Fully ripe, sweet mango

If you are of Pitta type avoid these things as far as possible –
Mango that ripens on the tree, which is sweet but little sour, slightly increases Pitta Dosha (Bhavaprakasha)
Unripe mango, Sour mango
mustard, fenugreek, cinnamon, chillies, Pepper, Asa foetida, Cumin seeds, Black caraway, Linseed oil, Flax seed oil, ajowan, Tulasi, Fenugreek, Vacha – Acorus calamus, Pepper-grass
Ajagandha – Gynandropsis gynandra
Unripe Mango
Unripe Falsa fruit
Amlavetasa – Garcinia pedunculata
Asthi Samhara – Cissus quadrangularis
Unripe Ceylon oak fruit – Koshamra – Schleichera oleosa
Leaves and shoot of Chakramarda – Cassia tora
Fruit of Shami tree – Prosopis cineraria

 

C. Ayurveda Kapha Diet – What to Take and What to Avoid for Kapha

Kapha diet should include – Beans, green gram, Bengal gram (Chickpea), horse gram, Amla, garlic, neem, radish, bitter-gourd, mustard oil, hot water, Mustard, banana flower, Yam (vegetable), honey, betel leaf, old wine, cow urine pepper, long pepper, ginger, Triphala, beaten rice.
Fruit of Ankota / Ankola – Alangium salvifolium

Barley for Kapha balance –  Usually sweet substances, that improve body strength cause Kapha increase. But barley is an exception. Though barley is sweet – astringent in taste and is coolant in nature, it helps to balance Kapha. Hence, it is an ideal diet ingredient for weight loss.

Diet rich in bitter, astringent and pungent principles balance Kapha.
If you have Kapha imbalance, it makes sense to take food in condition only.

Avoid these during Kapha increase:
Cotton plant seed – Gossypium herbaceum
Chironji oil (Buchanania lanzan)
Mashaparni – Termanus labialis
Madhuka – Madhuca longifolia

 

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