Ayurveda, Panchabhoota and Tridosha

Ayurveda, is the most ancient scientifically documented system of medicine. Ayurveda developed and inspired by the great seers of Ancient India has its roots in the most cherished scriptures of Ancient India, the Vedas which date back to about 5000 B.C. Rather than confining it to a Science of diseases and cure, it can be considered as the Philosophy of Life. It is a description of how to lead ones life in tune with nature and finally to achieve the ultimate happiness ‘moksha’.

Unlike the Western medicine Ayurveda considers an individual as a combination of sareera (the physical body), mana (the mind) and atma (the soul). These three are given equal importance in treatment and prevention of a disease thus making it a holistic system of medicine.

Ayurveda aims at restoration of equilibrium by bringing back the vitiated body elements back to their normal state and then preserving this state of normalcy within the body. For this Ayurveda has described the Pathya (conducive/beneficial) and Apathya (non conducive) for health. Some texts in Ayurveda are even found to mention Code of Conduct also.

Panchamahabhoota Theory
The cosmo anatomy comprises of the Panchabhoota (the five basic elements). The prithvi (earth), Jala(water) Agni(fire) Vayu(air) and Akasa(ether/space). In human body they are represented in different forms; for instance Earth as bones and teeth, water as blood and lymph, fire as metabolism, Air as oxygen and Ether as space between matter and the cavities.. In the formation of the Universe, these basic elements get absorbed into each other forming the gross elements the pancha- mahabhootas. They are the principle reflection if the Prapancha, the Universe. These gross elements give rise to the doshas, dhatus and malas.

Human physiognomy in Ayurveda is rooted in
  • The doshas (body humors)
  • The dhatus (tissues)
  • The mala (waste)

Concept of Doshas
The doshas are the result of a dynamic interplay between the panchabhootas. These doshas form the principle energy forces within the body which controls all functions of body ranging from the simple cellular processes to the most complex processes of biological functionality.

The term dosha denotes “ that which is subject to change” or “quick to go out of balance”.

The doshas are the classic example of energy and matter in dynamic accord. In a state of balance, they cannot be visibly detected. When out of balance they manifest as a transgression from their normal function. If not given due care at this stage they later on manifest as diseases.

Regarding the number of Dosha the theory of tridosha is more widely accepted one even though the Dhanwantari school of thought includes Rakta or blood as fourth dosha. A harmonious interplay of these dynamic forces form the foundation for good health


Vata is a conceptual interaction between the gross elements Vayu and Akasa. The dosha vata is found to exhibit more of the properties of the element Vayu and here space acts as the medium for movement of the vayu , the air exhibits its power of mobility only when space is available.

The term vata denotes wind, to move, flow, direct, the process or command. Vata is the controlling energy of the body controlling all physical, physiological and psychological activities.

Vata controls breathing, blinking of eyes, movements of muscles and other tissues, pulsation in heart, all movements of contraction and expansion, nerve impulses, emotions and feelings, nervousness, anxiety, pain, tremors and spasms. In balanced state it promotes

  • Mental alertness
  • Abundance of creative energy
  • Good elimination of waste matters from the body
  • Sound sleep
  • A strong immune system
  • Enthusiasm
  • Emotional balance
  • Orderly functioning of the body's systems and encourages your physical and mental health as well


Pitta denotes the fire element. The body water or jala acts as a medium to modulate the pitta dosha and prevents it from burning through. Pitta represents the gastric fire, digestive fire, action of enzymes, neurotransmitters and neuropeptides.

Pitta governs digestion ,absorption, assimilation , nutrition, metabolism, body temperature, complexion, lusture of eyes, intelligence and memory. Psychologically it is anger, hate and jealousy.

Indications of Balanced Pitta
A balanced pitta is an indication of sound physical and psychological health of an individual. When in balance pitta ensures: Good digestion, Energy , Goal-setting inclinations, Good problem-solving skills, Keen powers of intelligence, Decisiveness, Boldness and courage, Bright complexion .


A conceptual equilibrium of earth element and water element. The water gives the earth the fluidity or else the earth will become stagnated and inert. Kapha is structure and lubricant.

Kapha cements the elements in the body and it forms the physical structure of the body. It provides natural resistance to the body, lubricates the joints, moistens the skin, heals the wounds, fills the spaces in the body, provides strength and virility. Psychologically it is calmness, forgiveness and love and emotions of attachment, greed and envy.

Indications of Balanced Kapha

A balanced Kapha provides:

  • Physical strength
  • A strong immune system
  • Serenity or calmness
  • Steady mind, rational thinking and mental determination
  • Endurance and adaptability


Prakruti is the innate constitution of an individual determined at the moment of formation of the zygote. Every individual is a unique combination of the three doshas. This innate constitution determines the physical, physiological and psychological attributes of an individual. The prakruti like the genetic constitution remains the same entire life. It cannot be altered without adversely affecting the balance of well being. Ayurveda believes that a change in the prakruti is a sign of impending death, the rishta lakshna. Though some changes in physical and psychological aspects may be made through practice and control.

Seven constitutional types / prakrutis are found to be mentioned in classics based on the predominant dosha or doshas.

  • Vata
  • Pitta
  • Kapha

  • Vata/pitta
  • Vata/kapha
  • Pitta/kapha

  • Vata / pitta / kapha
Physical structure
light body frame with visible tendons and bones. May be sort or tall but lean or thin, irregular features, bent nose.
Skin :-

darker complexion when compared to rest of the family, with cold dry leathery and rough skin.

Hair :-

Dull dry thin scanty may be curly.

Eyes :-

dark brown or grey, Small, narrow, sunken, dry, eyes with thin lashes and brows, less lusture. Usually active.

Others :-

rough brittle nails, large protruding teeth.

Vata people generally have irregular daily routine. A Vata individual is quick moving both physically and in talking. They usually have irregular appetite and thirst; hence experience digestive and mal-absorption problems. Vata people have tendency to cold hands and feet and moderate sweating. The urine production is also scarce and the feces are dry, hard and small in quantity. Their sleep is light, interrupted, and fitful and they usually sleep less than the other types. They show dislike for cold climate. They spend high energy in short bursts thus tend to tire easily and to overexert. Sexually such people are easily excitable but quickly satisfied. Vata types tend to be delicate in health, so they may have few or no children.

They are creative, highly imaginative with full of ideas, mentally quick, quick to learn, easy to forget. Fun loving but easily changing moods.
Like to move a lot, hates sitting idle and seek constant action.

Negative traits
They have little willpower and possess little tolerance, confidence or boldness. Their reasoning power is weak. They have a tendency to act on impulse. These people are fearful, anxious, and insecure. Poor memory. These people are restless and often have disjointed thoughts. When out of balance they respond to stress with fear, worry, and anxiety. They have a tendency to change and may often move furniture or residence to keep from feeling bored. They are quick to earn money but spend it on trifles and have difficulty saving.

General Tips on Health and Wellness For Vata Types
When in balance, vata promotes creativity and flexibility and general well being of body and mind, when run out of balance; vata produces fear and anxiety along with several health ailments..

The Vata people usually have irregular habits of eating and sleeping habits. The people with a Vata body type should make an effort to establish a regular routine.

You should include relaxed and moderate kind of exercises in their routine. Yoga, meditation, walking, swimming are good for them. Avoid exhausting, competitive and frantic activities.

It is also important to regulate mental and physical impulses and to modify mental attitudes, emotional states, and behaviors in supportive ways. Try to associate with people who are calmly purposeful.

Vata people need to keep warm thus they should avoid staying out in cold weather and having cold food. Steam baths, humidifiers and moisture in general are beneficial for them. Daily oil massage before the shower or bath is also advisable Vata people should go to bed by 10 p.m. since they need more rest than the other types. A small daily nap between 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. is beneficial for them.

Food plan for vata
Vata prakriti people should consume warm, moist, slightly oily and heavy food and should avoid cold and raw food. Optimum meal times for vata people are: breakfast at 7 a.m., lunch at noon, a snack at 4 p.m. and a full dinner at 6 p.m.

Since vata is a cold dry dosha, warm, nourishing foods are good to balance Vata. You should include in your diet the food that is warm, moderately heavy, slightly oily (garnished with butter and fat), sweet, soothing and satisfying. All such foods are good for settling disturbed Vata. Food items such as warm milk, cream, butter, warm soups, stews, hot cereals, fresh baked bread, ripe fruits, salted nuts are good for vata. Breakfast is very important for vata people. You can add hot cereals such as cream of rice or wheat, any warm, milky, and sweet food item in your breakfast. Vata person should avoid high caffeine drinks instead of them they can opt herbal teas. Spicy Mexican or Indian foods that are cooked in oil also good for vata people. On the other hand cold foods such as cold salads, iced drinks, raw vegetables and greens are not very good for persons with vata imbalance. They should avoid eating candies, dry fruits, and unripe fruits.

The colours that correspond well with the Vata dosha are warm and gentle such as yellow, ochre, and brown. If the basic constitution is mixed like vata-pitta or vata-kapha, then you should include portion for the second influential dosha.

Body frame medium to light body frame with well built physique and and medium height.
Skin and hair type :-

coppery, yellowish, reddish or fair complexion with fair or reddish, fine, soft, shiny skin. Fine red, fair or dark brown hair, straight, thin, shiny and silky in texture.

Eyes :-

distinct,bright eyes usually blue, grey or hazel

Others :-

heart shaped face with tapering shin and pointed nose that is sharp and tends tobe reddish at the tip. Soft nails. Yellowish teeth with bleeding gums.


Rashes or inflammations of skin, sun burn, acne, boils, sensitive burning eyes, premature graying and baldnes

Sensitive and reactive body, usually keep in shape , rarely gain or lose weight much.
Strong metabolism, good digestive fire and strong appetite.
Natural longing for sweet, bitter and astringent tastes.
Average or medium sound and uninterrupted sleep.
Higher body temperature with warm hands and feet.
Excessive perspiration leading to easy fatigue.
Easily tired in hot weather.
Large quantity of urine and feces.
Passionate and romantic and sexually have more vigor and endurance than vata but less than kapha.

Behavioral or psychological
Sharp mind and sharp memory with outstanding learning understanding and concentrating powers. Orderly, focused, asserted and entrepreneurial by nature making them good leadership skills. Good comprehension power, focused vision and blessed wisdom are positive attributes of these fire people they are good public speakers.

They have a desire to spread their name and fame all over and prefer noble professions. Make large amounts of money and spend on luxurious items like perfume and jewellery. Moderately well off. They enjoy exhibiting their wealth and luxurious possessions and like to surround themselves with beautiful objects.

Stubborn, impatient, pushy, prejudiced and authoritarian. Easily subject to temper tantrums. They have emotional tendencies towards hate anger and jealousy. When out of balance they become commanding, irritated, angry, aggressive, and demanding. They can be judgemental and perfectionist.

General tips for wellness of pitta
They should always try to keep cool. Avoid rigorous exercises that increase body heat. On behavioral front developing honesty, morality, kindness, generosity and self control will be beneficial. avoid conflicts and do things that cools the mind and choose cool climates.

The pitta should use colors that are cool and calm, like blue and green. Using moonstone will be beneficial.

Food plan for balancing pitta
Pitta people have strong and efficient digestion. They can generally eat everything but should be cool or warm with less butter and fat.

The food which is sweet, bitter, astringent are good. Starchy food such as vegetables, grains, beans, salad, milk and icecreams should be included.

Avoid oily, steamy, hot and salty food. Avoid alcoholic and fermented food.

Avoid coffee instead herb teas like mint licorise root etc may be used.

Optimum meal times are breakfast at 7am. Lunch at 12 noon. A snack at 3p.m. and dinner at 6 p.m.
 In a balanced state kapha individual shows terrific endurance and physical strength with slow and steady,speech and a calm, loving and forgiving attitude. But excess of Kapha can lead to lethargy, weight gain, congestion and allergies along with envy, greedy and possessive behavior. 

Body Frame :-

Kapha prakriti people usually have strong and large body frame with heavy bones and muscles. Their chests are expanded and broad. Their veins and tendons are not obvious because of their thick skin but the muscle development is good. The bones are not prominent.

Skin & Hair Type :-

Kapha people generally have fair and bright complexion with lustrous, oily and smooth skin that can be cold and pale. Their hair can be thick, dark, soft, curly or wavy.

Eyes :-

Eyes are prominent feature of kapha people. They usually have large and attractive eyes. The eyes are dense and black or blue in color and the white of the eye is generally very white and beautiful.

Teeth :-

Kapha people generally have strong and white teeth.

When in balance kapha people enjoy excellent health with strong immune system. Kapha people have the most energy of all constitutions, but it is steady and enduring, not explosive. Kapha people have a tendency to gain weight as they have slow digestion and metabolism. They also face great difficulty in shedding weight because they are slow movers. They walks and talks slowly, have steady appetite and thirst with slow metabolism and digestion. Kapha people enjoy sound and prolonged sleep. They feel cloudy and foggy in the morning and often desire tea/coffee as a stimulant to start the day. Their perspiration is moderate.

Kapha people have dislike for cold and damp weather as they are more prone to colds, congestion and cough problem. Kapha people are also sluggish and loves sitting, sleeping and doing nothing.

They are usually slow to anger, strive to maintain harmony and peace in their surroundings. They have soft pleasing look with attributes such as love, care, compassion, kindness and forgiveness. Kapha people have craving for sweets and sweet taste helps them to stimulate sperm formation and increase the quantity of semen. Sexually Kaphas are the slowest to be aroused, but they also have the most endurance.

Behavioral or Psychological
Kapha people hold exceptional long-term memory. They are easygoing, relaxed, slow-paced, stable, reliable, affectionate and loving, forgiving, compassionate, faithful, gentle and calm. They usually have calm, steady mind thus do not loss their temper easily. Kapha people love to hug and are deeply attached in love and relationships. They have a deep melodious voice and a monotonous pattern of speech.

Kapha people tend to be wealthy as they are good at earning as well as saving the money.

Kapha people are slow learner and slow at comprehension.. They usually have nonjudgmental nature.
If in imbalanced condition kapha people suffer from greed, attachment, possessiveness, and laziness.

General Tips on Health and Wellness For Kapha Types
When in balanced kapha individual enjoys immense physical strength, sound health, strong immunity with calm and steady mind. Out of balance, kapha produces greed and envy and many health disorders.

Kapha prakriti people have more risk to lethargy, sluggishness, depression, and overweight because their metabolism is slow. To keep oneself fit and healthy kapha person need activity and stimulation. Daily exercise is more important for them than for any other type. As they are fast to gain weight but slow to reduce, they need rigorous kind of physical exercises to keep their body weight under control.

Meditation can be more intensive for kapha constitutions than for vata or pitta constitutions. They should perform prayer and meditation everyday.
Kapha person should be receptive to useful change and deliberate to implement life-enhancing actions. Indulging in new experiences and activities is also beneficial for them.

Kapha people should avoid daytime naps. Going to bed early and rising early is always beneficial for them.
The corresponding colors of Kapha dosha are bright colors such as red and orange and the favorable stone is Lapis.

A Food Plan to Balance kapha Dosha
Kapha is mainly water element thus influences the heavy, moist aspects of the body. To keep kapha under balance warm, dry, light food cooked with less water and minimum of fat is needed. One should increase the use of pungent, bitter, and astringent tastes. Kapha people should consume limited amount of sugar, oil and salt as well. Lightly cooked vegetables and raw fruits and vegetables are more beneficial for kaphas.

Kapha people should avoid heavy, oily foods, dairy and iced drinks; instead they need to include pungent, bitter, and astringent tastes that decrease kapha influences. Food items such as spices, green leafy vegetables, chilies, beans etc. should be included in diet.

Kapha people usually have a tendency to overeating that should be controlled because it lead to weight gain due to slow digestion.
Any food that is spicy is good for kaphas such as very hot Mexican or Indian food, especially in winter.

For kapha types, breakfast is optional that means you can skip it if you like. If you take breakfast it should be very light. You can have foods such as hot-spiced cider, buckwheat pancakes with apple butter, corn muffins, and bitter cocoa made with skim milk and a touch of honey. The main meal should be at the middle of the day, and only a light, dry meal in the evening is advisable. To energize yourself in the morning, you can take honey, hot water, lemon juice and ginger. Ginger tea can also be taken.

Your convenient date for consultation
CAPTCHA Image refresh
middle divider