Ayurveda (part 2)-Common Ailments of Each Dosha

by Nanci

Photo sourced from ayurvedaposters.com

A couple of weeks ago we introduced the Tri-Dosha in the article (list here), and briefly touched on the vulnerabilities of each of the three. Today I want to explore these weaknesses more in depth, so that we are able to better manage our bodies, minds and hearts. The presence of each element in the body brings with it both strengths and weaknesses, and today I want to explore these more in depth. Through awareness in or lives we find change and progress, and this is especially true with our bodies.


Being composed of air and space elements, Vata dominant people are vulnerable to these elements rising in their body and mind, causing them to go from being light, care free and creative to a state of instability, anxiety, weakness and fragility. Activities, environments, and foods that increase the air and space in their bodies will quickly cause this type of imbalance. For example, if a Vata person spends to much time in a cold, dry place they will develop a dry cough, dry skin or hoarseness of the voice. If they are constantly on the move, traveling or simply moving around to much in their daily lives, they will begin to feel unstable, anxious, and may develop insomnia. The extra space and lack of earth and water elements in their bones leave them are prone to breaks, arthritis, and cracking joints.


Common Pitha ailments revolve around heat, often causing acidity, swelling and emotional disturance. Fire can be of service but can also turn quickly on it’s host. For example, in Ayurveda our digestive power, or ‘Agni’, is considered to be the source of all health and disease. With a weak digestive system our food is not properly digested and assimilated, causing it to sit to long in our system where toxins begin to form, causing all types of disease. In a Pitha person the digestive fire is very strong and their bowel movements are regular, a key to good health. In an environment with to much heat, or by eating to much sour or spicy foods, this advantage quickly transforms to heart burn, acid reflux, ulcers and diarrhea. Excess Pitha can also surface on the skin, showing in red, hot inflamed swellings, cysts or acne. They are commonly known for their ability to multi task and over accomplish, and at the same time for their tendency to become intolerant, angry, and obsessive.


The earth and water of Kapha make for some of the most beautiful and desirable qualities in a person. They move from the heart and are deeply devoted, loyal, loving and sensitive. This grounded strength when in excess moves easily toward lethargy, depression, attachment, greed and weight gain. In the skin Kapha tends to surface in the form of large, cool, painful swellings and acne, often without puss. Excess water in the body can also lead to overly unctuous or lubricated joints, leaving Kapha persons bones strong but vulnerable to dislocations. Kapha aggravation or excess is often caused by taking to much sweets, oily/salty food or over sleeping. A lazy day of over eating can lead to a week of depression and hopelessness for a Kapha Dosha and they must be very diligent in managing their heavy hearts. Just as easily as they gain weight, they are able to lose it. By simply managing their diet and keeping regular, rigorous exercise they are able to avoid these issues and thrive.

Written by Jordan Ross Dore, Co-Founder of Breathe in Life

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