What is "Ayurveda?"
Written by Gabrielle Rosa
Ayurveda is a whole-body healing system that has been practiced for over 5,000 years with roots in India. Ayurvedic medicine is based on the connectedness of the mind, body, and spirit as well as the belief that all things in the universe are interwoven. According to Ayurveda, the universe is made up of five elements, space, air, fire, water, and earth. In the human body, these elements combine to form three doshas or subtle energies. These subtle energies consist of Vata, Pitta, and Kapha. Everyone is made up of a mix of these three doshas, but typically has one or two doshas that are more prominent. Knowing your prominent dosha(s) can aid you in helping maintain your body's natural state of balance. Take the quiz below to find out your prominent Dosha:
1. Which of these best describes your body frame?
a. Thin build b. Medium build with good muscle tone c. Large build
2. Which of these best describe your skin?
a. I have dry skin
b. I have normal / combination skin
c. I have oily skin
3. Which of these best describe your hair?
a. My hair is dry and brittle/frizzy
b. I have straight and fine hair
c. My hair is thick and oily
4. Which of these best describe your weight?
a. I lose weight easily/have a fast metabolism
b. My weight is typically balanced and does not change
c. I have a tendency to gain weight/gain weight easily
5. Which type of weather is your favorite?
a. I enjoy warm weather I become cold easily
b. I prefer cool weather
c. I strongly dislike cold, damp climates
If you answered mostly A:
Your prominent dosha is Vata!
Vata is regarded as the energy of movement. Air and space make up the Vata dosha. When you are balanced, you are generally enthusiastic, flexible, and creative. When out of balance you are fatigued, restless, and more likely to experience digestion issues. You should avoid caffeine, irregular routine and excessive mental work. You are encouraged by good sleep hygiene, moisture, restorative yoga, and warm cooked meals.
If you answered mostly B:
Your dominant dosha is Pitta!
Pitta is known as the energy of transformation. Fire and water make up this dosha. You are likely courageous, compassionate and determined. You have a sharp mind with a great memory. When out of balance you may become impatient, overly perfectionistic and irritable. You should avoid alcohol, excessive sun, and foods that are excessively spicy or salty. Ways to achieve balance: Make more time for a cool bath or a swim. Wear more breathable natural fibers in cool shades of blue or green. Eat more cool raw foods and fresh greens.
If you answered mostly C:
Your dominant dosha is Kapha!
Kapha is the energy of stability. Earth and water make up this dosha. You are methodical, loyal, and affectionate. When out of balance you are prone to weight gain, oversleeping, and allergies. You may also become needy and resistant to change. You should steer clear of heavy, oily foods, dairy, excess routine, and naps. To encourage balance you should exercise regularly, wake up early, drink warm ginger tea, and practice mindful eating.
For more ideas on Ayurveda and balancing your doshas, check out our Pinterest board: