Vikriti Results: Pitta-KaphaBy
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- March 06, 2011
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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.
Bringing two doshas back to balance is trickier than if only one dosha is increased. In these cases it may be useful to consult an Ayurvedic practitioner.
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
Signs & Symptoms Associated With Increased Kapha:
- Excess mucous
- Thick, white tongue coat
- Slow, sticky, sluggish bowel movements
- High body weight
- Difficulty rising in the morning
- Feeling slow, foggy, dull, lethargic or heavy
- Easily attached or possessive
- Overly sentimental
- Complacent or stubborn
- Tendency for "emotional overeating"
General Recommendations For Balancing Pitta and Kapha 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, you will be following a modified pitta-pacifying diet (aimed at avoiding further kapha aggravation), a lifestyle that is balancing for both pitta and kapha, and you can choose appropriate herbs or remedies according to your particular manifestations of imbalance. Keep in mind also, that:
Pitta is soothed by:
- Cooling foods and activities
- An attitude of surrender
- Moderation in all things
- Deep, slow breathing
Kapha is balanced by:
- Lightening foods and activities
Weaving these themes throughout your routine will help these recommendations serve you even better.
Pitta-Kapha Pacifying Diet:
- Foods, like many greens or beans, that naturally taste bitter and astringent.
- A moderate amount of the sweet taste and a small amount of the pungent taste.
- Cooling foods – either with a cool energetic (like watermelon or milk), a cool temperature, or both.
- Whole, freshly cooked foods.
- Most beans.
- A balance of heating and cooling spices: temper the heat from warming spices like fresh ginger, black pepper, cinnamon and cumin, with cooling spices like coriander, cilantro, fennel and cardamom.
- A moderate amount of high-quality olive, sunflower and coconut oils or ghee in your daily diet.
- A small to moderate amount of high-quality oils – olive, sunflower and coconut – 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 sour, salty, intensely pungent, or very sweet.
- Raw or cold foods and drinks.
- Overly warming foods – those with a noticeably warm energetic, like garlic, as they aggravate pitta.
- Highly processed foods (like canned or frozen foods, "TV" dinners or pastries).
- Chili and cayenne peppers.
- Most dairy products, as they are quite aggravating to kapha.
- Eating fresh fruit or drinking fruit juice within a half hour of any other food.
- Caffeine, nicotine and other stimulants.
- Red meat.
- Deep fried foods.
- Foods or drinks that contain refined sugar or corn syrup.
- Alcohol, except for an occasional beer or white wine.
Kapha – Pitta Pacifying Lifestyle:
These recommendations are focused primarily on balancing kapha and are meant to complement your primarily pitta-pacifying diet. A generous amount of exercise is generally beneficial in managing a combination of imbalances involving both pitta and kapha.
- An energetic daily routine with regular times for eating, sleeping, working, etc.
- Stimulating your body and inspiring your mind on a daily basis (avoid stagnation).
- A 10-20 min. self-massage daily with 1/4 c. warm sesame oil or kapha massage oil before bathing.
- 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.
- An exercise routine that includes a moderate amount of jogging, hiking, biking, dynamic forms of yoga like kapha-pacifying yoga, martial arts or other challenging forms of exercise – a minimum of five times per week. But, if you feel overheated or irritable, reduce the time or intensity of your regimen.
- 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).
- Maintaining a comfortable body temperature – warm, but not hot or overheated.
- Keeping your mind stimulated and engaged, to pacify kapha, but also calm and cool-headed, so as not to aggravate pitta.
- A balance of sweet or soothing and lively or invigorating music, smells, scenes, experiences and company. The sweet and soothing qualities pacify pitta while the more lively qualities pacify kapha.
Pitta and Kapha 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 pitta and kapha imbalances. Unless noted, all of these formulations are balancing for both pitta and kapha, 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 Pitta
- For a broad spectrum pitta pacifying herbal formula consider Healthy Pitta
- To support healthy skin and a clear complexion consider Blood Cleanse
- To address inflamed pitta in the joints and muscles consider Kaishore Guggulu
- To support healthy digestion, normal acid levels and a comfortable post meal experience consider Pitta Digest
- For uncomfortable feeling of heat in the body consider Healthy Pitta or Liver Formula
- To support the health of the liver and gallbladder (two organs closely associated with pitta), consider Liver Formula or Kutki.
- For frustration, anger, judgment, impatience, intolerance, criticism, irritability, or excessive perfectionist tendencies, consider Mental Clarity or Healthy Pitta
- To soothe the eyes and support their proper function consider Triphala
Herbs for Kapha
- For a broad spectrum kapha pacifying herbal formula, consider Healthy Kapha
- To support the healthy elimination of excess mucous, consider Lung Formula
- If you have a thick, white coating on your tongue, consider Triphala to support natural detoxification
- To support healthy elimination, consider Triphala
- For difficulty rising in the morning, consider Healthy Kapha
- For feeling slow, foggy, dull, lethargic or heavy, consider Mental Clarity or Healthy Kapha
- To support emotional composure, mental flexibility and motivation, consider Mental Clarity
- To support healthy eating habits and weight management, consider Trim Support and 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
Learning more about pitta and kapha may help you understand why following these simple guidelines can be so beneficial.
For more information about pitta, click here.
For more information about kapha, 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 Vikriti 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.