Ayurveda, which translates as “science of life” is a wholistic system of healing from India that has been around for thousands of years and is now making a come back in the United States. Ayurveda recognizes that we are made up of the 5 elements that the Universe is comprised of –Earth, Water, Fire, Air and Space. We are a microcosm of the macrocosm. We are all unique in that we have different proportions of the same elements as our constitution. Recognizing that human beings are part of nature, Ayurveda describes three fundamental energies that govern our inner and outer environments: movement, transformation, and structure. Known in Sanskrit as Vata (Wind), Pitta (Fire), and Kapha (Earth), these primary forces are responsible for the characteristics of our mind and body.
Each of these elements have different qualities e.g. someone that has a predominance of fire would possess qualities such as fiery, determined, intense, intelligent, bold, passionate, deep appetite for life but they could also tend toward hot emotions like anger and get hot ailments like skin rashes and high blood pressure. Fiery constitutions also want transformation. Fire is transformational! Knowing what our primary constitution is, will help us know ourselves more fully.
The Chopra center describes it perfectly, “For each element, there is a balanced and imbalance expression. When Vata is balanced, a person is lively and creative, but when there is too much movement in the system, a person tends to experience anxiety, insomnia, dry skin, constipation, and difficulty focusing. When Pitta is functioning in a balanced manner, a person is warm, friendly, disciplined, a good leader, and a good speaker. When Pitta is out of balance, a person tends to be compulsive and irritable and may suffer from indigestion or an inflammatory condition. When Kapha is balanced, a person is sweet, supportive, and stable but when Kapha is out of balance, a person may experience sluggishness, weight gain, and sinus congestion.”
You may already recognize your constitution from these descriptions but take the quiz here and find out for sure. This is great information to have to know yourself more fully, evolve spiritually and take healing into your own hands which is part of the goals of Ayurveda. Western medicine does not recognize disease until it is much further in its course. Seeing where your imbalances are and re-aligning them early in the game can prevent and reverse the onset of many diseases that are a result of diet and lifestyle.
Print the quiz and fill out the best choice for each category and then add up your totals to see which dosha captures you best. If you absolutely can’t decide on just one column, pick 2. Also when making your choices, consider the choice that fits over the course of your life and not just at this moment in time.