Learn About The Different Body Types Defined In Ayurveda

Learn About The Different Body Types Defined In Ayurveda

Ayurveda is an ancient system of medicine that originated in India. It is an effective way of using naturally occurring substances such as plants to treat various maladies. The key to an effective Ayurvedic treatment is the knowledge of the different body types and application of Ayurvedic treatment on the basis of these body types.

The Ayurvedic body types

The practice of Ayurveda is unique to individuals, mainly depending upon their body type. It is not like one size fits all. There are Tridoshas or three types of Doshas or body types defined in Ayurveda, and they are as stated below:

  • Vata
  • Pitta
  • Kapha

The Tridoshas

The Tridoshas are defined as the energies that make human body and mind. These Doshas are in charge of the various bodily functions, including the various physical and mental functions. The composition and balance of these Doshas create a unique blueprint of an individual's mental and physical well being.

Composition of Tridoshas and human body

As per Ayurveda, the human body is made of five natural elements namely the Earth, Water, Air, Fire, and Space. Each type of Tridosha is composed of two elements out of these five.

  • Vata Dosha is made of space and air.
  • Pitta Dosha is composed of fire and water.
  • Kapha Dosha is made of earth and water.

Vata Dosha

Vata Dosha or the wind energy is the energy of movement that governs the bodily functions or processes. It is known as the king of Doshas, due to its influence on the human life force and movement of other two Doshas.

(a) Physical characteristics

  • The Vata Dosha influenced individual are slim with a height that is they are either too tall or short.
  • They have underdeveloped bodies with flat chests and visible veins and tendons.
  • The body color can be brown to Wheatish with rough, dry or cracked skin.
  • They love sweets and hot drinks.

(b) Mental characteristics

  • They are quick learners with short term memory.
  • They have weak reasoning power and lack of confidence.

Pitta Dosha

Pitta Dosha or fire energy represents the metabolism or digestive energy. It's in charge of all the transformation and conversion related bodily functions.

(a) Physical characteristics

  • The individuals are medium in height with slender bodies.
  • Their complexion ranges from fair to reddish with soft skin and silky hair.
  • They have strong appetite due to good metabolism and digestion.
  • They eat large quantities of food and love both sweet and bitter food.

(b) Mental characteristics

  • They are intelligent with a focused mind.
  • They are excellent orators with leadership skills.
  • They are highly competitive and love challenges.

Kapha Dosha or water energy

Kapha governs the structure and physical form of a body, and it is responsible for the functioning of the human body. It's the energy that controls the body growth and is responsible for moisturizing the skin, lubricating the joints and the functioning of the immune system.

(a) Physical characteristics

  • Broad chest and shoulders with well-defined muscles and thick skins
  • They have lustrous and oily skins and have thick, wavy and dark hair
  • Regular appetite but lower food consumption.

(b) Mental characteristics

  • They are calm, peaceful and forgiving in nature.
  • They are slow in comprehending, once they comprehend a concept they retain it for a long time.

A human body has the combination of all three Doshas with either one or two of them being dominant. Their proportion defines an individual and his/her physical and mental behavior. The Ayurveda defines a healthy body as a body, whose composition and balance of Tridoshas, closely resembles the state of Tridoshas that was at the time of birth or Prakriti. Any Vikruti or an imbalance or deviation from this state of Doshas or Prakriti is the reason for sickness or a malady. Hence, the need of understanding Doshas and their properties is important.


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