The physical nature of the doshas

Broadly, in the cosmos, Kapha has external nature of earth and water that reflects the forces of coherence, assimilation and stability. The external nature of Pitta refers to as the fire, which expresses the oomph and transformation. Furthermore, the vata’s external nature is the air boasting the properties of mobility and excitement. It also possesses the space wherein bodily activities happen in dynamic system.


Every dosha in the body is allotted with certain actions and functions. Vata is basically the element responsible for bodily movements. The pitta is assimilation force in the body and the kapha provides the stability and endurance. Together, all the doshas serve as adversarial characters in biological concordance as sequal to every dosha’s influence on the body. The vata dosha is the most dominant dosha governing body movements, nervous system and driving life force(1).

Without vata dosha, the pitta and kapha are lamed and cannot travel anywhere(2). The pitta dosha regulates the body hormones and enzymes therefore rendering flawless digestion. Also, it is important for maintaining temperature, hunger, thirst, pigmentation and functions the like. The pitta, according to some scholars, is responsible for vata and kapha balance. The kapha is structural element of the body providing stability. In shushruta samhita, the function of kapha is mentioned as lubricating joint and providing moisture to the dermal layer. It also helps in healing the wound and regulating the vata and pitta dosha.

Together, all three humors kapha, vata and pitta pervade the human body but then they primarily seat at certain body areas. Vata is mainly located at the lower part of the body, pitta in the middle and the kapha in the head. The kapha influences the neck, head, and thorax, upper portion of the stomach, tissues, fats and synovial membrane. The pitta is mainly found in regions of umbilical area, stomach, intestines (small), sweat and lymph glands and the blood. The vata dosha dominates at the body sites that include pelvic region, colon, bladder, urinary and genital organs, extremities and the nervous system(3).

Though they have their main sites, doshas are spread everywhere in the body. The doshas work together and that makes the body function properly and flawlessly. Any factor that disturbs the level of any dosha results in some health ailment (4). The level of doshas and vitiation depends largely upon the diet, lifestyle and other factors that influence the body, mind and soul. According to Ayurvedic scholars, vata, pitta and kapha have certain qualities and properties. When an individual consumes too much diet that is more pitta oriented, there are chances for the pitta dosha to get vitiated. This goes same with vata and kapha dosha vitiation when too much vata and kapha oriented food is consumed respectively.

The knowledge of properties of vata, pitta and kapha dosha is very important for any Ayurvedic physician so as to diagnose the health problem and treat it. Generally, pacifying the dosha happens when the food and drugs that containing opposite dosha’s properties are consumed. For instance, when pitta dosha elevation brings certain disease (such as heartburn or hyperacidity), consumption of pitta dosha pacifying food and drug (like Shatavari or milk) is consumed to treat the disease.

References:

1. Scientific Basis for Ayurvedic Therapies edited by Mishra

2. Madhava Nidana Poorvardha

3. Methodology of Research in Ayurveda -Jamnagar Ayurvedic University Press 1989

4. Charaka Samhita Sootrasthana

Author: Dr Maulik Vyas

I am a holistic Doctor with 10 yr of experience in medical/health and wellness industry. Also, I am a professional content writer with 1000s of articles published across the web. I'm available for content writing, natural treatment consultancy, business ideas about healthcare/wellness industry. I am the proprietor of company named Mouls Incorporation.

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