Vata, Pitta, Kapha
Movement, metabolism, structure
According to Ayurveda, the entire cosmos, nature and man are pervaded by three fundamental forces known as the 'three doshas'. They control all physical functions and determine the specific dosha type. The individual distribution of the three doshas characterises the different features of our respective personalities, our likes and dislikes, our strengths and weaknesses.
If the three doshas are in their individual balance, this means that all physical functions can perform smoothly– according to Ayurveda we are then in perfect health and feel completely comfortable in our own body. However if the dosha combination is out of balance, for example because one dosha exerts undue influence over the others, then this can lead to ill health. This is why Ayurvedic texts explain which simple measures we can take to bring a dosha gently back into natural balance. Thus the body's own natural self-healing powers are strengthened. This is traditional knowledge for holistic health.
These are the three doshas:
VATA – the principle of movement
is responsible for the nervous system, breathing and all kinds of movement in the body. The elements of ether (space) and air are associated with the Vata dosha. Balanced Vata makes you feel full of energy, happy, enthusiastic and creative; the mind is calm, clear and alert.
PITTA – the principle of metabolism
governs – among other things – digestion and body temperature. In the area of the mind, it stands for a sharp intellect and emotions. Pitta primarily consists of the fire element. When in balance, Pitta bestows contentment, energy, fluency in speech, good digestive power, correct body temperature and a clear mind.
KAPHA – the principle of structure
provides the body with firmness and stability and maintains the body's fluid balance. The elements of earth and water are associated with Kapha. A balanced Kapha gives strength, stamina, a good immune system, patience and mental stability.