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What do the results mean?
Any score higher than zero indicates an increase of that dosha (vata, pitta or kapha).
The greater the increase, the greater the imbalance for that dosha. For example, a vata increase of 30 indicates a more significant imbalance than an increase of 10. The same is true for pitta and kapha.
It is common to have more than one dosha that is high. If two doshas are elevated within 10 points of each other, you will usually want to decrease both elevated doshas at the same time, before attending to the third dosha.
Signs & Symptoms Associated With Increased Vata
- Nervousness, anxiety, panic, fear
- Twitches, tics, tremors, spasms
- Dry or chapped skin
- Constipation, gas, bloating, dry, hard stools
- Low body weight
- Dislike of cold and wind
- Difficulty tolerating loud noises
- Light, interrupted sleep
- Spacey, scattered feeling
- Excess thinking or worrying
Signs & Symptoms Associated With Increased Pitta
- Red, inflamed rash, acne, cold sores
- Acute inflammation in body or joints
- Acid reflux, gastric or peptic ulcers, heartburn
- Nausea or discomfort upon missing meals
- Loose stools
- Uncomfortable feeling of heat in the body
- Frustration, anger, irritability
- Judgment, impatience, criticism, intolerance
- Red, inflamed or light-sensitive eyes
- Excessive perfectionist tendencies
General Recommendations For Balancing Vata and Pitta Simultaneously
Ayurveda provides many simple, practical tools to help you regain your natural state of balance. Ayurvedic treatment strategies often include adjustments to your diet, appropriate lifestyle habits, and supportive herbal regimens.
In general, it can be helpful to follow a pitta-vata pacifying diet (mainly focused on balancing pitta), a particularly vata-pacifying lifestyle, and to choose appropriate herbs or remedies according to your particular manifestations of imbalance. Keep in mind also, that:Vata is deeply calmed by:
- Slowing down
- Cooling foods and activities
- An attitude of surrender
- Moderation in all things
- Deep, slow breathing
Vata Reducing Diet
- Foods that naturally taste sweet and a small amount of moderately bitter and astringent foods.
- Foods with a neutral energetic â€“ neither too cooling nor too heating, like most grains and other bland foods.
- Whole, freshly cooked foods.
- Beans that are easy to digest, like mung beans, mung dahl, and red lentils.
- Cooling herbs and spices like coriander, cilantro, fennel and cardamom.
- Dairy, if you digest it well, but avoid drinking milk with your meals. It is best to have milk at least an hour before or after other food. If you donâ€™t digest cowâ€™s milk, almond and rice milk are good substitutes.
- A generous amount of high-quality oils or ghee in your daily diet.
- Routine times for your meals.
- Taking a deep breath after swallowing your last bite and heading off for your next activity.
- Eating your meal in a peaceful environment.
- Foods that are pungent, sour or salty, or excessively bitter or astringent.
- Raw or cold foods and drinks.
- Overly spicy foods â€“ those with a noticeably warm energetic, like chili or cayenne peppers.
- Highly processed foods (like canned or frozen foods, "TV" dinners or pastries).
- Eating fresh fruit or drinking fruit juice within a half hour of any other food.
- Cold or carbonated drinks.
- Caffeine, nicotine and other stimulants.
- Red meat.
- Deep fried foods.
- Alcohol, except for an occasional beer or white wine.
Vata â€“ Pitta Pacifying Lifestyle:
- Life as you would imagine a master would: with calm awareness and a gentle pace.
- A consistent daily routine with regular times for eating, sleeping, working, etc.
- A daily 10-20 min. self-massage with 1/4 c. warm sunflower oil or pitta massage oil.
- Click here for more information on abhyanga (Ayuvedic self massage), including the best oils for each dosha, contraindications, and benefits. Women who are menstruating or pregnant should not do abhyanga unless directed by a health care practitioner.
- A gentle exercise routine that includes a calm, restorative, stretch-focused form of yoga such as vata-pacifying yoga, Tai qi (tai chi), qi gong (chi gong), walking, swimming (but don't get chilled) about five times per week.
- Note: morning and evening are the best times to exercise (6-10am/pm); avoid exercising during the hottest part of the day (approx. 10am-2pm).
- Keeping warm, no matter what the weather, but being careful not to overheat.
- Sweet, soothing music, smells, scenes and company.
Vata and Pitta Pacifying Herbal Remedies
Both single herbs and general Ayurvedic herbal formulas can be very useful tools to help restore balance to the doshas. Below are some formulations that are especially useful for the most common vata and pitta imbalances. Unless noted, all of these formulations are balancing for both vata and pitta, so you can choose according to your most pressing concerns. If you are unsure how to decrease both doshas at the same time or do not have a full understanding of which remedies are best for you, it would be good to consult an Ayurvedic practitioner who can customize formulas to suit your unique situation.Herbs for Vata
- For a broad spectrum vata pacifying herbal formula, consider Healthy Vata
- To support mental calmness and well-being, consider Tranquil Mind
- To balance vata in the joints, nerves and muscles, consider Joint Support
- For dry or chapped skin, consider Vata Massage Oil (may be to heating for pitta)
- To support healthy elimination, consider Triphala
- To support healthy weight gain, consider Ashwagandha (in excess, may aggravate pitta)
- For dislike of cold and wind, consider Healthy Vata
- For difficulty tolerating loud noises, consider Healthy Vata
- To support sound, restful sleep, consider I Sleep Soundly
- To Support stability and grounded awareness, consider Mental Clarity
- To support healthy, comfortable digestion consider Vata Digest (may aggravate pitta)
- For a broad spectrum pitta pacifying herbal formula, consider Healthy Pitta
- To support healthy skin and a clear complexion, consider Blood Cleanse (may aggravate vata)
- To balance pitta in the joints and muscles, consider Joint Support
- To support healthy digestion, normal acid levels, and a comfortable post meal experience, consider Pitta Digest or Amalaki
- For uncomfortable feeling of heat in the body, consider Healthy Pitta
- For frustration, anger, irritability, judgement, impatience, criticism, intolerance, or excessive perfectionistic tendencies, consider Mental Clarity or Healthy Pitta
- To soothe the eyes and support their proper function, consider Triphala
Learning to Attune to Your Current Condition
While your constitution remains stable throughout your life, your current condition oscillates constantly, in response to shifting environments, events, times of day, and changes in weather. It is helpful to develop a practice of noticing variations in our current state of balance from one day to the next, through the seasons, and over the years. When we commit to observing ourselves in this way, we become more adept at recognizing and responding to the changing needs of our bodies and enjoy a quicker, easier return to balance.
In addition, we recommend returning to this test periodically. For example:
- When the seasons are changing
- If you implement changes in your diet, lifestyle, or herbal regimen it would be helpful to revisit this test after about a month, to see how your efforts have affected your condition, and to reassess whether to stay the course or change your remedies
- Whenever you experience a major life change, such as
- a new pregnancy
- becoming a new parent (or nursing mother)
- physical or emotional trauma
- grief or loss
- moving to a new job, school, or home
- If you ever simply feel the need for some specific support with your current condition.
For more information about vata, click here.
For more information about pitta, click here.
The above information was written by Dr. Claudia Welch and Melody Mischke for the exclusive use of Banyan Botanicals. The information is protected by copyright and may not be reprinted without the written permission of Dr. Claudia Welch and Banyan Botanicals. More about Dr. Claudia Welch
The above Prakriti test and results are intended as a convenient tool to provide practical information on your Ayurvedic constitutional type. It is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease. In addition, it should be noted that while this information should be considered highly useful it is not meant to replace the skilled constitutional analysis of a professionally trained Ayurvedic Physician.