What Are The Doshas?

The doshas are a concept taken from ayurvedic medicine – an ancient holistic medical system that has been practiced for 5,000 years. This tradition states that there are three doshas -or body types-: 

  1. Vata
  2. Pitta 
  3. Kapha

Each dosha is made up of a combination of the five elements that make up everything in our universe: 

  1. Air
  2. Fire
  3. Water
  4. Earth 
  5. Ether (space)

All three doshas are present in every individual, and each person has his/her own specific ratio known as Prakriti. This unique blend of the doshas heavily influences the individual’s physical, mental and emotional traits. 


Kapha is the integration of the earth and water elements. Their combination brings the structure into our minds, bodies, and souls, while simultaneously hydrating the entire system. This dosha is responsible for lubricating the joints, moisturizing the skin, supporting the immune system and protecting the connective tissues throughout our bodies. It is also recognized as the embodiment of watery energies such as love and compassion.

Physical Characteristics

  • Kaphas usually have a strong robust frame, wide hips, and broad shoulders. It usually makes them either tall and strong or small and sturdy. 
  • People who are predominantly Kapha can have trouble losing weight due to their slow metabolism but are usually able to maintain good stamina. 
  • Their hair is often full, soft and voluminous. 
  • Their eyes are big and round, and their lips and teeth are large.

Mental Characteristics

  • Kaphas are patient, affectionate and loyal with a calming and gentle nature. 
  • They will often move slowly, yet their actions will be carefully thought through and executed with purpose. 
  • Their loving nature makes them easily approachable. 
  • They are more than willing to listen to others’ problems and offer compassionate advice or assistance. 
  • They are well-organized and can easily save money, but also have a tendency to become materialistic. 
  • Kaphas can often feel lethargic, especially after meals. They can struggle to stay energetic throughout the day and often need periods of rest or even afternoon naps. 
  • If unbalanced, they can become possessive, stubborn, and highly materialistic. 
  • Their sedentary nature means it can also take a long time for emotional pain to leave their system. It makes them prone to bouts of depression and also means they are likely to hold grudges for a long time. 
  • They also find it challenging to adapt to change. When faced with a stressful situation, they favor a head-in-the-sand response, not wanting to face the challenge in front of them.

How To Balance Kapha

– Stay warm, dry and comfortable. 

– Keep clear of wet or damp conditions.

– Choose vigorous, dynamic exercises like dancing, running or martial arts. These will keep you warm and boost your energy.

– Eat foods with spices such as chili, cayenne, cinnamon or ginger.

– Vary your routine as much as possible. Don’t nap during the day. Don’t resist change and cultivate excitement for the future.

– Learn a new skill, travel, and take up a hobby.

– Dress, decorate, or accessorize in warm, bright colors. Yellow, oranges, and red can help energize a lethargic Kapha.

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