Category Archives: Ayurveda

A Closer Look At Pitta

Every year contains a full dosha cycle, Vata, Pitta and Kapha, which makes up the three Ayurvedic seasons. Likewise, all three doshas are within each individual (in unique proportion). Since we are currently in Pitta Season (approx. June – September), let’s take a closer look at the Pitta dosha…

Ruled by fire and water, Pitta is known as the force of transformation. Fire and water’s relationship is not based on similarity, but rather on the exchanging dominance of one over the other for the purpose of fueling important life processes.

For example, too much fire will result in the boiling away and evaporation of the water. Too much water will result in the fire being put out altogether. Therefore, this shifting energy needs to be kept in balance in order to achieve optimal transformation in the mind and body.

Pitta is responsible for digestion, absorption, assimilation, nutrition levels, metabolism, our body-temperature, skin coloration, the luster of our eyes, our intelligence, and all perception and understanding.

Every single one of us harbors the forces of all three doshas (because all three are needed in order to sustain life). So take a moment right now and allow your gaze to turn inward – try and sense the force of Pitta within you. Can you witness all the changes happening in your body? Can you feel digestion? The Pitta dosha absorbs and transforms everything we receive, all stimuli; it takes-in one thing and makes it into another, including the way we uniquely comprehend our own thoughts. If we literally digest every thought we think, ask yourself if your thoughts are nourishing you….

Someone who has a dominant Pitta dosha may take on some of these physical characteristics: Medium build, generally proportionate – Develops muscles easily – Sensitive, combination skin – Luminous glow with large pores in the T-zone – Eyes are bright and have a penetrating gaze – Lips and eyes are medium sized, nose is often sharp – Hair is silky and thin, often with red hues – Nails are soft, pink and well formed – Skin is soft and warm to the touch – Voracious appetite – Good digestive power – Speech is clear, sharp, and precise – Sleeps little, but sound – Sensitive to bright light

Common psychological characteristics of a dominant Pitta dosha: Intellectual with warm personality – Good leader – Fiery, chivalrous and passionate – Asks many questions – Metaphorical and interpretive thinkers – Mental energy is sharp and focused – Competitive drive, highly ambitious – Great delegates, pioneers – Adaptable – Sensitive and compassionate – Extremely Visual

When Pitta is imbalanced (meaning it is present in excess), some of the most common things it can physically lead to are: hypersensitivity of the skin, blotchy redness, rashes, hives and dry patches, inflammation, ulcers, acidity, excess heat, thinning/graying hair, high blood pressure, and insatiable hunger. Acne in the t-zone or eczema may also develop.

Psychologically imbalanced Pitta can lead to: frustration, anger, jealousy, aggression, arrogance, irritability, impatience, over-achievement, perfectionism, and the potential of becoming spiteful, critical and judgmental.

Take a look at our most recent Pitta Season Newsletter for great tips, exercises, suggestions, songs, delicious recipes & more! Our newsletter is offered only three times a year. It is a completely free resource to optimize your season and you can receive it personally!

For those of you who still don’t know your dosha, take this quiz and find out!

A Closer Look At Kapha

Every year contains a full dosha cycle, Vata, Pitta and Kapha, which makes up the Ayurvedic seasons. Likewise, all three doshas are within each individual (in unique proportion). Since we are currently in Kapha Season, let’s take a closer look at the Kapha dosha…

Earth Droplet

Ruled by Water and Earth, Kapha is known as the fluid force of cohesion. It is responsible for all structure and lubrication in the body.

For example, if we take a jar, fill it halfway with water and then add sand, the sand will gradually sink to the bottom of the jar, separating from the water. The only way to keep the sand in equilibrium with the water is by stirring the mixture continuously.  Kapha is the steady stirring energy that keeps the water and earth together.

Kapha is responsible for our physical structure; it maintains the body’s resistance, lubricates the joints, provides moisture to the skin, helps to heal wounds, fills the spaces within the body, gives biological strength, vigor and stability, supports memory retention, gives energy to the heart and lungs, and maintains immunity.

Every single one of us harbors the forces of all three doshas because all three are needed in order to sustain life.  So take a moment right now and allow your gaze to turn inward – try and sense the force of Kapha within you.  Focus in on your flesh, joints and bones and all the anatomical structures that are contained and connected inside your body.  Kapha has healed your wounds, has enabled your physical growth, and is the energy behind your strength, stamina and stability. Kapha also enables memory retention and sustains it over time.  Try and recall your earliest memory and see this memory in relationship to where you are in this moment.

Kapha is the cohesion in all that exists: the earth, the massive planet we walk on, the cool soil that bears the crops, the sturdy slope of an old mountain; and the deep cradle of the ocean.

Someone who has a dominant Kapha dosha may take on some of these physical characteristics: Larger, well-built frame – Evenly proportionate – Skin is clear with larger pores – Eyes are moist and prominent – Lips are full and pale – Large, strong teeth – Hair is thick, lustrous and usually wavy – Nails are clear and pale – Cool and moist to the touch – Constant and strong appetite – Great endurance – Good immunity – Slow, steady pace – Sleep is long and deep – Senses of taste and smell are sensitive

Common psychological characteristics of a dominant Kapha dosha: Caring, steady, and calm – Not easily irritated, strong and stable – Loving – Self-sufficient – Great long- term memory – Mental and physical energy is steady and enduring – Loves routine – Make good providers, dependable – Serene, warm, nurturing – Romantic and loyal

When Kapha is imbalanced (present in excess), some of the most common symptoms it can physically lead to are: Lethargy – Weight gain – Congestion – Asthma – Prolonged sleep – Excessive oiliness – Blackheads – Cystic acne – Cysts – Edema – Water retention and swelling.

Psychologically imbalanced Kapha can lead to emotions of: Depression – Attachment – Greed, and long-standing grudges or envy – Possessiveness and becoming withdrawn.

You can take a sneak peek at our most recent Kapha Season Newsletter for great tips, exercises, suggestions, songs, delicious recipes & more! Our newsletter is offered only three times a year and is a completely free resource to optimize your season! Click on the link and make sure to sign-up at the top!

For those of you who don’t know your dosha, take this quiz and find out!

Ayurveda Today

What is Ayurveda?

Can we use Ayurveda in today’s modern lifestyle?

For some, the notion of Ayurveda connotes a strange, intangible subject, an antiquated ideology completely irrelevant to the modern day lifestyle. Others have found an intimate connection with the insights offered through Ayurveda and have incorporated this science on a practical, daily basis. And of course, as is always true in life, there are many, many people in between those two perspectives — the vast grey area, if you will.

For those of you who don’t know about Ayurveda, I’ll briefly give explanation, but please know that this summation in no way does justice to the subject, which dates back over 5,000 years. So as I describe to you below, please know that I do so humbly.

The term Ayurveda derives from the Sanskrit words ayu and veda. Ayu translates as “life” and veda as “knowledge” or “science”, thus Ayurveda is known as the science of life. Ayurveda, originating from India, employs a holistic mind-body system of healing, that was originally established with 8 branches of medicine, including pediatrics, toxicology, surgery, and internal medicine, to name a few. It is both preventative and profoundly curative.

Ayurveda states that there are five fundamental elements that comprise all of nature; this includes each and every one of us. These elements, Space, Air, Fire, Water and Earth, are uniquely distributed within every individual, like a fingerprint or a snowflake or a one-of-a-kind blueprint – no two are exactly the same. Your specific blueprint is known as your prakruti or constitution, which you have embedded in you from the moment of conception. However, when we are born and as we live our lives, outside factors can sway us away from our constitution; and this natural occurrence is known as our current condition or dosha.

Ayurveda provides the knowledge and awareness to use your dosha, as a ‘compass’ – through concrete holistic guidelines, helping you to navigate yourself back into what your original state of being was – a precious and phenomenal state free from imbalance and disease.

So Ayurveda today… is it possible? After all, it was established before the industrial and media ages, before today’s complex demands, dual-income necessities, and the modern lifestyle. Others may argue that amidst all life’s evolutions, Ayurveda is a science that has stood the test of time, which still has profound impact today and has proved it in curing ailments that have defied top western physicians.

My aim with this blog is to establish a place where people can discuss these issues and share insights. I hope that at the very least, Ayurveda can be taken out of the realm of the mystical and into the realm of accessible – a viable and profound path towards beauty, health and wellness.

A Closer Look At Vata

Vata dosha is defined by the inherent interaction and exchange between the elements of space and air. The amount of space affects the ability of the air to gain momentum. However, if space is unrestricted and boundless, the air has freedom and become as forceful as a hurricane. This is why Vata is known as the force of mobility, responsible for all movement in the mind, body and emotions…

Some examples of the functions that Vata governs: breathing, blinking, movements in the muscles and tissues, pulsations in the heart, all expansion and contraction in the body, the movements of cytoplasm and cellular membranes, the movement of the single impulses in nerve cells, as well as hearing and speech functions.

Every single one of us harbors the forces of all three doshas because all three are needed to sustain life. So take a moment right now, close your eyes and try to sense all these functions mentioned above, all that is moving within you. Feel your heart beating, your breath, the widening and narrowing of your rib cage with each inhalation and exhalation, hear all the sounds around you and within you, can you sense the flow of your blood, the flow of your thoughts… Try and be with your Vata.

We all have the Vata dosha within, but someone who has a dominant Vata dosha may take on some of these physical characteristics:

  • Lighter and thinner frame
  • Either tall or short
  • Prominent joints and bones
  • Thin, dry skin, with fine pores
  • Small and ‘active eyes’, usually dark brown or dark grey
  • Lips are generally thin and dry
  • Teeth tend to be small and crooked
  • Hair is usually dark, thin, dry and frizzy
  • Nails are dry and thin
  • Nose, hands and feet are often cold to the touch
  • Irregular eating, small appetites
  • Shorter stamina
  • Little perspiration
  • Quick speech and pace
  • Light, short, and often interrupted sleep
  • Sensitive to both sound and touch

These are common psychological characteristics of a dominant Vata dosha:

  • Creative, Imaginative and enthusiastic
  • Makes friends easily
  • Quick and lively
  • Learns fast
  • Stronger short – term memory, than long- term
  • Mental and physical energy come in bursts
  • Very active with continuously changing lifestyle
  • Great speakers, flowing thought patterns
  • Accommodating to the needs of others
  • Very generous with their time, money, and anything else they can offer

When Vata becomes imbalanced (meaning it is present in excess), some of the most common things it can physically lead to are: joint pain, chills, gas, constipation, lower back pain, tremors, loss of appetite, insomnia, fainting and various other disturbing irregularities. The skin can also show signs of dehydration, flakiness, and excess or premature wrinkling.

Psychologically imbalanced Vata will be restless with anxiety, worry, and lack of focus, will be nervous, fearful, unable to sit still, be indecisive and have low tolerance.

Many different factors disturb Vata including the stress of excess activity, strenuous exercise, constant travel, improper diet, the season of autumn, and especially an overly irregular routine.

More blog entries to come for remedies and suggestions on how to balance Vata and live in harmony… with yourself!