Ayurveda believes that every individual has different
requirements. Therefor Ayurveda recommends foods for people according to their
primary body type. According to Ayurveda foods can be both healing and also the
source of imbalance and difficulties. By eating foods according to our
Ayurvedic body type, we will accumulate less Ama or toxin in the body.
In Ayurveda, people are classified according to three
principles, vata, kapha, and pitta. We may be dominant in one principle but have
all three present in our body in a smaller measure. Most people will actually
be a combination of two of these principles, with the third only playing a
minor role. But because we all contain the three, any of them can get out of
Characteristics of Pitta domin
* Strong willed
* Good digestion
* Passionate about many things
Ayurveda’s Pitta constitution is calmed by cooling foods,
such as fresh fruit and vegetables. Bitter green vegetables like collards,
watercress & parsley. Most greens suit pitta. Fruits that suit pitta body
types include pomegranates, sweet berries, sweet apples, apricots, figs, mango,
sweet oranges, coconut, pineapples, plums, watermelon and prunes.
Dairy that suits pitta includes milk, cottage cheese
& soft cheeses. Although sour cream, hard cheeses, and yoghurt don’t really
suit pitta due to their being too high in fat, salty, or sour.
Barley, basmati rice and wheat are grains that suit pitta
body types. Pitta body types generally need a lot of protein and they probably
need a little more than the other Ayurvedic body types. Spices that are cooling
in nature are also important. These include coriander, cumin, mint, parsley,
dill and fennel. Garlic should be avoided though as it is too heating.
Things that can imbalance Pitta body types:
* Excess heat, hot climates, and hot times of day
* Vacations and times when there is increased mobility
* Excess oil in the diet
* Too many hot foods, including spicy foods. But this can also mean too many cooked meals
* Excess caffeine, salt, red meat and alcohol
Characteristics of people with a dominant Vata body type:
* Quick mind
* Always on the go – mentally and physically
Dietary choices that support vata aim at grounding this
energy-in-motion. Vata people benefit from meditation, warmth, soothing music,
taking breaks, and resting (not a natural vata inclination).
Vata body types should include warming spices like ginger,
cloves, anise, cayenne, cinnamon, garlic, horseradish, caraway, mint, mustard
seeds, parsley, cooked onion, paprika, rose water, vanilla, tarragon, thyme and
People with the vata body type should minimize raw food,
including salad, though salads should not be eliminated completely as they
provide valuable nutrients. But vata should ground the salad with a dressing
made from oil and vinegar, and be aware of the weather at the time of eating
it. Being more sensitive to cold, vata’s should have salads on warmer days. Icy
cold drinks and Sugar cause imbalance for Vata body type nd should be avoided.
Vata generally love fruit, and it suits their Ayurvedic constitution. The exceptions are apples,
pears, cranberries, watermelon and dried fruit. Vata types should go for sweet
and moist fruit, like mangoes, nectarines, bananas, coconut, fresh figs,
peaches, and strawberries.
Cooked grains like oatmeal, basmati rice, and brown rice,
are very grounding for the vata ayurvedic constitution. Beans (legumes), on the
other hand, are not! Beans are cold, dry, and heavy – not the attributes that
Things that can imbalance vata dominant body types
* A lot of travel, especially by plane
* Loud noises
* Constant stimulation
* Drugs, sugar and alcohol
* Cold climates (especially extremely cold ones) and cold food
* Frozen and dried food
Characteristics of people with a kapha dominant body
Kapha body types should not take high protein diet. The
kapha quality is already heavy and although this doesn’t sound great, it is
what provides Kapha body types with a wonderful stability and strength.
Kapha should have light and low fat protein. Beans, with
the exception of soy and soy products, are great for kapha. Beans help move
kapha’s energy and digestive system. Barley is also excellent. In terms of
meat, chicken and turkey suit kapha.
Kapha body types should have plenty of vegetables,
including bitter vegetables, peppers, cauliflower, lettuce, peas, onions,
potatoes, mushrooms, eggplant, corn cobs, beets, brussel sprouts and celery.
Dairy is heavy and cooling, and it does not suit the
Kapha ayurvedic body type. Light and crispy foods like corn tortillas and
popcorn suit kapha. Kapha people should make sure they have variety in their
diet, as kapha body types have a danger of falling into a rut more than others.
Asian and Latin American style meals are great for kapha.
They are spicy and light, free of dairy, and have plenty of vegetables in them.
Things that can imbalance Kapha body types:
* Too much fat in the diet, including oil we cook with!
* Dairy products
* Not enough stimulation and challenge
* Not enough variety
* Not enough exercise
* Too much bread, iced foods and drinks, and sweets