Ayurveda, “the science of life,” is an Indian medical system dating back more than 5,000 years. It is the oldest continuously practiced health-care system in the world. The principle of Ayurveda is to prevent and treat illness by maintaining balance in the body, mind, and consciousness through proper drinking, diet, yoga, meditation and herbal remedies.
Ayurvedic Medicine examines and understands our connection with, and the influences of the energies that make up the universe: The five elements of ether (space), air, fire, water, and earth.
According to Ayurvedic principles, these energies exist within each of us-body, mind and consciousness-and comprise each person’s constitution. Each person’s constitution has different ratios of the elements, making everyone unique.
The three constitutional types, or doshas, reflect your physical, emotional, and psychological make-up. Usually, one or two types will dominate in a person’s constitution.
Pitta energy is linked to fire and controls digestion and metabolism. Pitta types are known for their intense personality, sharp intelligence and wit.
Vata energy is connected with air and space and is associated with bodily movement including circulation, breathing, and heartbeat. Vata types are upbeat, highly alert, flexible and creative thinkers.
Kapha energy is linked to earth and water and controls growth, immunity and strength. Kapha types are often solid in build, calm and tolerant.
An Ayurvedic doctor assesses for imbalances through the understanding of the elements and doshas, and a physical examination, which includes observing the condition of the pulse, abdomen, skin, nails, eyes and tongue.
Practitioners aim to teach people how to attain optimal health through a meaningful understanding of themselves and their dosha and by strengthening body, mind, and spirit through dosha specific health practices, foods, herbs, and other natural remedies.
University of Maryland Complementary & Alt Medicine Guide online. “Ayurveda.” Accessed on Feb 2, 2016. https://umm.edu/health/medical/altmed/treatment/ayurveda
University of Minnesota Center for Spirituality & Healing. “What Happens in a Visit to an Ayurvedic Practitioner?” Accessed on Feb 2, 2016. http://www.takingcharge.csh.umn.edu/explore-healing-practices/ayurvedic-medicine/what-happens-visit-ayurvedic-practitioner
Garivaltis, H. “What is Ayurveda?” Kripalu.com. Accessed on Feb 2, 2016. https://kripalu.org/resources/what-ayurveda-anyway
Yoga International.com “What Dosha am I?” Recommendations on using Dosha quizzes. Article and links to videos. Accessed on Feb 2, 2016. https://yogainternational.com/article/view/the-down-and-dirty-on-dosha-quizzes
NaturesFormulary website. Online Dosha Test. Accessed on Feb 2, 2016. http://www.naturesformulary.com/contents/dosha-test
National Center for Ayurvedic Medicine. Practitioner Search. http://www.ayurvedanama.org/search/custom.asp?id=945