A dosha, put very simply, is a makeup of elements that are found in nature (ether, air, water, fire and earth). These elements are found in everyone as well as our food, the air around us, the exercise we do and more. The three doshas are:
- Vata: made up of air and ether
- Pitta: made up of fire and water
- Kapha: made up of earth and water
Each season of the year is governed by an ayurvedic dosha. Winter is a time of vata – it tends to be dry, cold and dark. These are all aspects of vata. As we move into spring, we move into a time that is more wet and warmer. These are aspects of kapha. Ayurveda seeks to bring balance and that means when one element is at its high point, we offset with the opposite. Foods that are known to be kaphic are warm, heavier foods – think comfort foods. Stews, cooked vegetables, mashes etc. Because we now want to start balancing the kapha dosha we need to start eating the opposite of this – uncooked foods like salads, lighter foods – fruits, vegetables, grains, sweets like honey, spicy foods are good too. This is also a time of year that activities should become more vigorous. If you are a yogini, vinyasa or power yoga can be great in spring to get your energy moving. Think in terms of coming out if the hibernation of winter and getting yourself moving again.
Now, if you’re like me and live in a place where the spring equinox doesn’t necessarily line up with spring-like weather, you may need a couple more weeks of vata pacifying time. Keep eating your comfort foods, doing your restorative practices and keep yourself grounded. You’ll know when it’s time to give yourself a kick in the butt.
Do you know your dosha? You can take a quiz to find out here: The Chopra Center. Knowing your own dosha can help you to know when you need to be extra careful about balancing your elements based on the season or time of day.