Ayurveda is based on three guiding principles to maintain a healthy body and mind. The three main things to know about Ayurveda are:
1. The three mind-body types or "Doshas"
If you can define and live your life by your specific Dosha, you will likely live a healthy and happy life. Ayurveda provides the guidelines for each body type based on both physical, mental and emotional traits. Ayurveda is a tool for balancing your life through a systematic routine that works especially for your anatomy. Using a system of diet, yoga and "pranayama" or breathing exercises, along with healthy lifestyle adjustments, Ayurveda can help you maintain and improve your overall life.
According to Ayurveda, there are three main energies or "Doshas" that make up our inner and outer environments.
"Vata," meaning wind, "Pitta," meaning fire and "Kapha," meaning earth govern the state of our mind and body. Each person is composed of these three Doshas, one being more prominent than the others. In some cases, two Doshas are equally prominent. The balance of these Doshas is what keeps the mind and body at its optimal state. However, when the Doshas are out of balance, it can create illness and disease within the body and mind. The way to balance these Doshas is through diet and lifestyle. Balance is Ayurveda’s way of saying “get it together."
The most important thing to know about Ayurveda is that there is no one specific diet. This is not easy to read for the faint of heart or those easily swayed by dietary fads. However, this is super important because every body is so incredibly different that it is not possible to categorize billions of different body types into a few mainstream diets. What works for one person might not promote a healthy lifestyle for another. This is the beauty of Ayurveda. It works in a way that allows each individual to have their own diet protocols to balance out their specific Dosha. However, diet alone cannot create the desired balance.
Now this is the fun part. Each person has their very own specific lifestyle protocol that is tailor made to their specific body type to address the imbalances they are experiencing. However these routines also change seasonally to address the change in temperature and climate which can create imbalances within the mind and body as well. You work with nature for healing, not against it. Not only is there a routine that you can follow everyday but also every season to keep you healthy and vibrant all year round! Also an excellent way to never get bored of your routines. You’ll always have new ways to nourish your mind and body with Ayurveda.
Interested in taking the next step to find out your Dosha? You may be surprised by your results. Try taking this free quiz by The Chopra Center to find out your mind-body type, and then adjust your lifestyle accordingly to support and sustain a healthy life.