Pitta Dosha - Understanding Your Body’s Symptoms
There are three main Mind-Body types in Ayurveda which are known as “Doshas”. Pitta Dosha is the constitution of fire and water. Once you know what your dosha (Mind-Body type) is, you can work with it to bring more harmony to your life. To find out what type you are, take my free test.
Do you typically struggle with irritability, frustration, perfectionism, being overly judgmental or critical, have feelings of anger or aggression? Physically, do you experience inflammation, heartburn, acid reflux, skin rashes, loose stool, or liver challenges? If so, you are likely dominant in Pitta Dosha (the constitution of fire).
The Main Qualities of Pitta Dosha
𝐓𝐡𝐞 𝐛𝐞𝐬𝐭 𝐰𝐚𝐲 𝐭𝐨 𝐰𝐨𝐫𝐤 𝐰𝐢𝐭𝐡 𝐏𝐢𝐭𝐭𝐚 𝐝𝐨𝐬𝐡𝐚 and these qualities 𝐢𝐬 𝐭𝐨 𝐠𝐢𝐯𝐞 𝐲𝐨𝐮𝐫𝐬𝐞𝐥𝐟 𝐭𝐡𝐞 𝐨𝐩𝐩𝐨𝐬𝐢𝐭𝐞:
Hot 》》》 Cool
Light 》》》 Heavy/grounding
Sharp 》》》 Dull/calming
Oily 》》》 Dry
Below is a breakdown of creating balance through the use of opposites.
Hot ----> 𝐂𝐨𝐨𝐥
Since Pitta Dosha runs hot, we need to counter balance that by cooling Pitta down. We can do this by consuming cooling and alkalizing foods and drinks like cucumbers, leafy greens, coconuts and mint (salads and some raw food is good for Pitta). Also using cooling herbs and spices when cooking like cilantro/coriander, fennel, dill, mint, and rose help to make food medicinal and balancing. Other ways to stay cool are living in cooler environments or making sure to wear appropriate clothing for the season, avoid the sun in the mid-day hours when the sun is hottest. Try moon bathing and delighting in the gentle luminosity of the moon's glow, instead of sunbathing in the intense heat of the day. Lunar pranayama (breathing practices) or yin yoga are also great for cooling down Pitta Dosha.
Light ----> 𝐇𝐞𝐚𝐯𝐲/𝐠𝐫𝐨𝐮𝐧𝐝𝐢𝐧𝐠
Since Pitta Dosha is also light (like Vata), we need to counterbalance the lightness with heavier, grounding foods and practices. Heavier foods include root veggies, hearty soups and stews, grains, high quality dairy (raw organic dairy is best), sweet and juicy fruits, dates, coconut, and seeds such as pumpkin and sunflower seeds.
Other ways to bring in the heavy quality to ground the lightness of Pitta Dosha are to practice grounding yoga poses like Mountain Pose, Tree Pose, Forward Fold, Knees to Chest, using sandbags for certain poses, and staying in Savasana for five or more minutes. Some lifestyle tips for bringing in the heavy quality are to use weighted blankets, take time for snuggling and connecting to loved ones, massage that incorporates slow, heavy strokes with compress
ion, and taking time to connect to the earth (Earthing).
Sharp ----> 𝐃𝐮𝐥𝐥/𝐜𝐚𝐥𝐦𝐢𝐧𝐠
Pitta Dosha types tend to have a very sharp mind, which is a blessing in our culture where productivity is one of the most praised traits. If the mind becomes too sharp, it can spill over into a sharp tongue, meaning unkind words spoken, perfectionism, anger, irritability, and aggression. Some ways to counter-balance that are to calm the mind with mindfulness practices, such as meditation, lunar pranayama, restorative yoga, and yin yoga. Also taking time to rest, avoiding over working, and drinking less caffeine will help Pitta’s to be more gentle with their words and actions.
Oily ----> 𝐃𝐫𝐲
Pitta Dosha can tend towards excess oil which shows up in their skin and hair, so lessening oil consumption and making sure the oils consumed are raw and cold pressed are great ways to balance the oily quality. This means using less oil when cooking, removing oily foods, fried foods and processed foods from the diet, and focusing on the sweet, bitter, and astringent tastes. Some foods that fall into these categories are basmati rice, quinoa, mung dal, turmeric, pomegranate, cranberries, digestive bitters, leafy greens, and dandelion (root and leaf).
Pitta governs metabolism, digestion, and energy production in the mind & body. This internal fire helps us digest not just food, but also emotions, experiences, and information. The qualities of Pitta gives us mental clarity, sharpness, focus and discernment.
Pitta also governs the Summer season. If Pitta dosha becomes imbalanced in the summer (meaning too much heat accumulated in the body and/or mind), there will be heat related symptoms that show up in the body and mind (symptoms listed in the beginning of this article).
When you align your diet and lifestyle to one that brings balance and harmony to your particular Mind-Body type, life becomes more enjoyable. You spend less time in pain and discomfort, and you have more time to do and experience the things you love. It really can be this simple.
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