Walking through the Northcliffe Forest Park, it is evident that Autumn has indeed arrived in the southern hemisphere. The touch of dry, cool air on the skin, the sound of autumn crackling leaves, and the mind indulging in distractions seemingly unable to stay present. Yep, that’s vata season. It is a description of Autumn to early winter in Ayurveda, a sister science to yoga, or the science of life.
There are 3 main energetic force (called doshas: vata, pitta and kapha), which derives from 5 primary elements: space/ether, air, fire, water and earth, that governs our bodies, minds, emotions, interaction; the physical world; everything. Two of the 5 main elements constitutes a dosha; and a dosha simply reflect the qualities of the elements that exist in excess.
Here are the qualities of the 3 doshas . We all possess all three doshas – vata, pitta and kapha – but tend to have one that dominates.
Vata is made up of Air and Space and have the qualities of cold, dry, light, irregular, mobile, rarefied and rough.
Some traits of vata type are: dry/cracked skin, hair, lips, nails and heels; cracking joints; lustreless skin, dandruff, eczema, psoriasis; longitudinal ridges on the nails, early wrinkles; insufficient sweat, cold hands and feet; hates cold and loves hot. Smaller, fragile and lower weight by nature and often experience weakness or depletion when imbalanced.
Pitta is made up of Fire and Water and have the qualities of oily, hot, intense, light, fluid, malodorous and liquid.
Some traits of pitta type are: soft oily skin and hair; gray hair with a receding hairline; body temperature tends to be higher than normal; prone to rash, acne, heart burn and acidity; hates heat. Hot and intense by nature, often extremists.
Kapha is made up of Earth and Water and have the qualities of oily, cold, heavy, stable, viscous, dense and smooth.
Some traits of kapha type are: Oily/thick skin, hair and nails; repeated cold, congestion and cough; slow metabolism and digestion, tends to be overweight. Slow, steady and solid by nature and have a tendency to become sluggish, stagnant and unmotivated.
As Ayurveda operates on the principle of like increasing like, by applying the opposite actions you can maintain balance during the changing season. For example, Autumn being the season vata, juices cleanses should be avoided due to their cold, raw and rough nature. Consuming only juice for several day period is most likely going to increase the vata which is already in excess due to the qualities that Fall possesses. This can bring about a constant feeling of coldness, poor circulation, dryness, gas, constipation, light headedness and sleep issues.
5 Steps to Cleansing Part 2 .....Next
Discover your dosha type Part 3 .....Next
Ayurvedic Soul Food Kitchari Recipe Part 4 .....Coming Soon