Ayurvedic types – Vata, Pitta, Kapha
What is an Ayurvedic type?
The term “dosha” according to Ayurveda refers to basic regulating forces that are at work both in nature and within us. Our ayurvedic type (dosha type, constitution type or “Prakriti”) is determined at birth and not only shapes our physical build, intellectual abilities, skills and preferences, but also our responses to certain foods, seasons, weather and the challenges of daily life.
The doshas can be recognised and determined on the basis of their characteristics. Ayurveda distinguishes between Vata, Pitta, Kapha and mixed types depending on which dosha is dominant.
Dosha quiz – Which Ayurvedic type are you?
The free Maharishi Ayurveda® dosha quiz will give you an initial insight into your individual dosha type in just five minutes.
Simply click on numbers 0-6 to indicate to what extent you identify with the corresponding statement: 0 means “No, not at all true” and 6 means “Yes, absolutely”. Your responses should be based on your state of health over the past six months rather than the past week.
At the end of our dosha quiz, you will find out which is your most dominant dosha (highest number of points) and what this means for you.
The result of this simple quiz is often enough to help you reconnect with your true nature and thus live a healthier life. If you would like a more in-depth, individual analysis, we recommend that you consult an experienced therapist who specialises in Maharishi Ayurveda®. Potential contacts can be found at the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Ayurveda.
What does the dosha quiz tell you?
The dosha quiz will help you to:
- learn more about yourself, your skills and your needs,
- develop your full personal potential,
- live in harmony with your own constitution and in doing so
- lead a healthy, happy life.
„Who am I?“ –
What your Ayurvedic type says about you!
Our Ayurvedic or constitution type reflects our natural dosha balance with which we were born. In ayurvedic terms this characteristic constitution is called “Prakriti”. This basic constitution changes very little during our lifetime.
Stress, unhealthy lifestyles and other factors can all upset the balance of the doshas, which in turn will affect our basic inherent constitution.
This altered state is called “Vikriti” in Ayurveda. If this imbalance is detected early, simple changes in routine, lifestyle and diet can often help to restore the natural balance.
Therefore, an understanding of our constitution can help us to maintain what is an optimum dosha balance for us, enhance our vitality and thus enable us to live our life as healthy, happy and fulfilled as possible.
Vata, Pitta, Kapha or mixed type? – Ayurveda constitution types
Ayurveda considers every human being to be a unique individual characterised by an interaction between the three Vata, Pitta and Kapha doshas and their countless characteristics.
According to Ayurveda, a Tridosha constitution (Vata, Pitta and Kapha in equal proportion) indicates that the biological forces within the body are in balance. This implies good structure (Kapha), energy (Pitta) and movement (Vata).
If a dosha is disproportionally high, this will cause certain dosha functions to be more dominant. However, a “balancing out” of the doshas has nothing to do with proportions, but rather with the promotion of the normal, healthy functioning of the individual doshas.
One or two doshas tend to be dominant in most people.
Different doshas also tend to dominate during different phases of life.
According to Ayurveda, childhood and adolescence up to around the age of 30 are determined by Kapha, the principle of structure. The Pitta principle is dominant during the period of creativity up to around the age of 60, which is followed by the period of transformation and spiritual maturity determined by the Vata principle.
Overall, there are ten different constitution types whose characteristics are determined by one or more doshas, resulting in a combination of physical features. The doshas determine specific attributes or characteristics, such as a person’s physical build, metabolism, talents, strengths, preferences and tendencies. From an ayurvedic perspective, the description of constitution types is extremely complex and is governed by numerous influences.
- Vata – space and air elements
- Pitta – fire element (and some water)
- Kapha – earth and water elements
- Vata-Pitta-Kapha (Tridosha/Sama dosha)
There is no good or bad evaluation of the individual dosha compositions, as every person is unique and all doshas have their own individual advantages and disadvantages.
You can find out more about the different Ayurvedic types here:
Being kind to yourself – making the right choices for your dosha type
Whether you are trying to establish a healthy diet or choosing the right aroma oil as a room fragrance, focusing on your dosha type will help you to improve your dosha balance, recharge your batteries and find more equilibrium.
If your dosha quiz indicates that you have several dominant doshas, we suggest that you follow the recommendations for the dominant dosha type.
The best tips for a successful Dosha balance
|The right flavours||sweet, sour, salty
e.g. anise, asafoetida, basil, fenugreek, fennel, fresh ginger, cardamom, cumin, cloves, mustard seeds, liquorice, cinnamon
|sweet, bitter, pungent,
sweet spices such as fennel, coriander, cardamom, cumin, turmeric, cloves, saffron, cinnamon
|hot, bitter, pungent or astringent;
e.g. pepper, ginger
|Nutrition||warm, well-cooked, nutritious food, eat small, regular meals, ghee||cooling, well-cooked food, stick to set meal times, drink sufficient water||cooked, low-fat, light food, do not eat too much or too frequently, fast from time to time|
|Temperature||all kinds of warmth – baths, drinks, food, weather, etc.||lukewarm water to cool down – baths or drinks, avoid excess heat, stay in the shade in summer||hot ginger tea|
|Fragrances||sweet, heavy, acidic||sweet, cooling||bitter, tart, spicy, warming|
|Aroma oil||rose oil, basil, geranium, cinnamon, lemon, orange, lavender, lemon balm, ylang-ylang||rose oil, mint, sandalwood||juniper, eucalyptus, ginger, camphor, cloves, marjoram|
|Colours||warm, calming, soft, muted
green, beige, delicate pink
|cool, muted, calming, soft, gentle, earth colours
blue, grey, white
|bright, lively, clear|
|Daily rhythm||go to bed early (before 10 p.m.)
and get up early
|go to bed early (before 10 p.m.)
and get up early
|go to bed early (before 10 p.m.)
and get up early (before 6 a.m.)
|Leisure tip||warm bath after being in the cold, steam baths, get sufficient rest, avoid overstimulation||walks in the forest, light / funny entertainment, regular recovery periods||saunas, regular movement, stimulating intellectual activities|
|Special Ayurveda tips
||regular oil massages with warm sesame oil or Vata Massage Oil, Gandharva music||oil massages with warm coconut oil or Pitta Massage Oil, Gandharva music||dry massages with Garshan massage gloves|
You can find further tips on the best nutrition to suit your type in our article entitled “Ayurveda tips on nutrition and diet”.
Schrott, Ernst; Schachinger, Wolfgang: Ayurveda. Grundlagen und Anwendungen. 3. Aufl. 2016, Trias-Verlag (German only)
Bauhofer, Ulrich: Mehr Energie. Wie wir in Balance leben. 2020, Südwest-Verlag (German only)