The doshas are a part of Ayurveda, the sister science of yoga, that helps to type and balance individuals. There are three doshas: vata, pitta, and kapha.
What is a dosha?
Every person has some qualities of each dosha in their constitution, but most people lean more heavily toward one or two doshas. When a person’s dosha is in balance, she can feel her best, but when it is out of balance, any number of mind- or body-related symptoms can manifest.
Vata is an air and space dosha whose principles govern creativity, movement, and blood flow. People with vata constitutions tend to have a small frame, are frequently cold, and dry skin.
A vata imbalance could manifest as anxiety, nervousness, overactive mind (monkey brain), poor digestion, memory loss, or constricted blood flow. Vata season is fall into winter—in this season vatas can be more sensitive to imbalances.
People with pitta constitutions tend to run warm, have a medium build, and irritate easily. Pitta is a water and fire dosha whose principles govern the health of skin and eyes, metabolism, direction, and drive.
A pitta imbalance could manifest as heat, anger, irritability, aggression, rashes, or heart burn. Pitta season is late spring through summer—during these seasons, pittas are more prone to imbalance.
People with kapha constitutions tend to have large frames, be well grounded, and tire easily. Kapha is a water and earth dosha whose principles govern moisture, muscles, lungs, and sense of taste.
A kapha imbalance could manifest as weight gain, feeling lethargic, becoming withdrawn, oily skin, and congestion. Kaphas season is late winter into early spring—at this time, primarily kapha people can be thrown out of balance more easily.
Discover your dosha
You may have already identified with one or two of the above doshas. To learn more about your type, find a dosha quiz like this one.
By knowing your primary dosha(s), you might begin to recognize balances and imbalances and better understand how to feel your very best in mind and body based on your natural constitution.