Ayurveda is a holistic health system that was developed thousands of years ago in India. The practice of Ayurveda is based around the concept that health and wellness can be improved and maintained by balancing the mind, body, and spirit. Physiological equilibrium can also be upheld through the balancing of doshas, or your own particular pattern of energy.
The excess of one dosha, be that Kapha, Vata, or Pitta, can cause physical or emotional turmoil and other adverse repercussions due to the imbalance of energy. What role does the Kapha dosha play?
The Kapha dosha is composed of earth and water elements and is the energy of structure and hydration.
“[Kapha] provides the “glue” that holds the cells together … Kapha supplies the water for all bodily parts and systems.”
- Vasant Lad, Ayurvedic doctor, BAM&S, MASc
When in balance, Kapha types tend to be loving, compassionate, and relatively stable. When out of balance, those with excess Kapha may become lethargic and sluggish or they may experience greed, envy, or unhealthy attachment. Since the Kapha dosha is usually thought to be sensitive to cold and dampness, keeping your diet slightly warmer and avoiding cold drinks may help to maintain equilibrium. Since people with Kapha as their primary dosha are known for their lower metabolisms and their tendency to gain weight easily, eating light meals at regular times should become routine.
So, which foods should you be eating and which should you be avoiding to pacify Kapha and maintain proper equilibrium?
Kapha Dosha Diet
Since those with strong Kapha dosha may have a tendency to overeat occasionally or enjoy too many sweet, salty, or oily foods, they may experience adverse effects including physical and mental lethargy and a general feeling of slowness. In order to maintain balance, those with excess Kapha may want to avoid consuming fat-filled, heavy foods and instead favor pungent, bitter, and astringent foods.
To keep the body satisfied while maintaining equilibrium among the other doshas, try incorporating some light foods that are dry, warm, and freshly cooked. It can also be helpful to use the occasional warming spice such as cinnamon, pepper, or ginger.
Some foods that you may want to try when on a Kapha diet are:
- Warm, cooked foods
- Astringent and dry fruits such as apples, pears, and cranberries
- Vegetables, especially leafy greens
- Most beans including black and pinto beans
- Bitter foods
- Pungent foods
- Cinnamon tea
Those who are Kapha dominant may want to avoid:
- Fried or greasy foods
- Cooling foods and cold drinks
- Sweet or sour fruits
- Sweet or sour vegetables
A great, simple drink to make is lemon and spice tea. This is a wonderful option for Kapha because it provides warmth, uses the natural sweetener honey, boosts metabolism, and can wake you up when you’re feeling groggy.
Boil a cup of water and add a splash of apple cider vinegar, a pinch of cayenne pepper, a teaspoon of honey, and the juice of ¼ of a lemon. It’s that simple! This can help you feel less sluggish after meals and is sure to keep you nice and warm.
Learn your unique Mind-Body type and receive recommendations for looking and feeling your best.
To find out what your Dosha (Mind-Body Constitution) is,
click here to take the Ayurvedic Perfect Health Dosha Quiz
and learn how to incorporate lifestyle, diet and exercise changes based on your unique Dosha for optimal health and well-being.