The Doshas are the cornerstone principle in thought and practice of Ayurveda. The doshas are the three primary life-forces and subtle substances behind all physiological and psychological functions. They produce the body and are the causative factors in the disease process. When treating imbalance, the Ayurvedic Practitioner works with your Vikruti or state of imbalance within the doshas. Using the principle that like creates like and opposites cure, lifestyle factors and treatments using the opposite qualities of the dosha out of balance are used.
Nature of Kapha
Kapha is made up of the water and earth elements and like these elements, Kapha is characterized by qualities of cool, moist or oily, stable, and heavy. To restore balance to Kapha, programs are designed to emphasize the opposing qualities of warm, light, dry, movement.
People with more Kapha in their nature tend to be of larger proportions, with a stockier frame, thick smooth skin that may be oily, and thick, lustrous, wavy hair. They are stable and calm in thought, speech and action, and are easy-going, patient and supportive in relationships. They are very loyal and make good friends. They are long, heavy sleepers and have a tendency to oversleep and become lethargic out of balance. Damp, clammy environments and spring weather create discomfort. Calm and sweetness of disposition are hallmarks of balanced Kapha
Factors that can create imbalance in Kapha include a diet that contains too many deep-fried, sweet or heavy foods; over-consumption of ice-cold foods or beverages, exposure to cold and damp conditions, daytime sleep, and lack of exercise or mental stimulation.
When Kapha is out of balance, symptoms and conditions such as swelling, mucous congestion, excess weight, nausea and loss of appetite, and sluggishness, depression and lethargy result.
Signs that Kapha is out of balance:
- You gain weight easily even though you feel like you don’t really have an appetite
- You feel tired even though you are not performing any physical activity
- You find it difficult to wake even after long hours of sleep and wake up feeling un-refreshed and tired
- Your skin is feeling oilier than usual, with breakouts
- Your hair is oily even with regular shampooing
- You are heavy and congested in your throat, head and chest
- Your digestion is slow leaving you feeling heavy and lethargic after a meal
- You feel like you just want to sit and be a spectator
- You feel withdrawn, find it difficult to deal with change, or constantly feel the need to “cling”
- You feel mentally unmotivated