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How to Eat for Your Dosha + Which Foods You Should Avoid

In Ayurveda, there is a Tridosha system that consists of three doshas – Vata, Pitta, and Kapha. The doshas represent vital energies found throughout the body and mind. They govern all physical and mental processes – and provide every living being with an individual blueprint for health and fulfillment.
Because everybody is unique, it is important to understand your dominant dosha and nourish your body accordingly to maintain balance.

You will know when your body is balanced based on how it feels and functions.

Since the doshas represent the elements, it is easy to assess which foods are best for you. For example, if your dosha consists of the fire element, it is important to consume cooling foods to create balance.
New to Ayurveda and the Doshas? Read What Are the Doshas – Here’s Everything You Need to Know

Eating For the Doshas

The Ayurveda approach encourages eating healthy whole foods to balance your body, mind, and spirit – and to free your body from illness. When you break down the nutritional requirements by doshas, the concept stays the same but is finely tuned to accommodate the superior dosha within the individual.

Here’s how to eat for your dosha and what foods to avoid for each dosha:

To assist you in your Ayurveda journey, we have created an Eating Guide for Your Dosha to help you understand your dosha’s nutritional requirements.

Vata Nutritional Guidelines

Since Vata is cooling, light, and drying, eating for this dosha includes warming, heavy, oily choices. Tastes that preserve this dosha are sweet, sour, and salty. Pungent, bitter, or astringent foods tend to destabilize.

Foods to help balance Vata:

Examples of foods that help balance out the Vata are ghee, coconut oil, olive oil, rice, wheat, heavy fruits such as bananas, avocados, and melons, warm milk, zucchini, cauliflower, organic poultry, seafood, and eggs. It is easier for Vata’s to digest fruits and vegetables that have been cooked and liquids that have been warmed.

Foods that should be minimized for Vata:

Foods that should be minimized include beans, raw vegetables, barley, corn, millet, buckwheat, rye, dried fruit, light fruit (such as apples and pears), sprouts, and cabbage.

Pitta Nutritional Guidelines

Since Pitta is the fiery dosha, minimizing hot, sour, and pungent foods – and incorporating more cooling foods – are your best bet for stabilization.

Foods that help balance Pitta:

Examples of foods that help balance pitta include coconut oil, olive oil, wheat, rice, barley, oats, sweet fruits, asparagus, cucumber, okra, zucchini, cooling herbs and spices such as cilantro, saffron, and coriander, and organic poultry.

Foods that should be minimized for Pitta:

Foods that should be minimized include tomatoes, hot peppers, carrots, beets, eggplant, onions, garlic, radishes, spinach, sour fruits, like grapefruit and berries, corn, rye, millet, and brown rice.


Kapha Nutritional Guidelines

Kapha is heavy, oily, and cold. If you are Kapha, your diet should consist of mostly light, dry and warm options. Foods that are pungent, bitter and astringent promote stability while foods that are sweet, sour, and salty can create imbalance.
Did you know that each dosha is symbolically connected to a Hindu goddess? Read this: Which Hindu Goddess Are You Based on Your Ayurvedic Dosha?.
The Kapha’s goal is to boost your metabolism and digestive system with your diet. It is ideal to eat your largest meal at lunchtime and your smallest meal for dinnertime. Be sure you have allowed your food to digest at least three hours before going to sleep.

Foods that help balance Kapha:

Examples of foods and beverages that are good for Kapha are hot ginger tea, beans, light fruits such as apples, pears, and cranberries, all vegetables, all spices except salt, organic white meat poultry, eggs, seafood, barley, corn, millet, buckwheat and rye.

Foods that should be minimized for Kapha:

Foods you should consume less of include nuts, dairy, red meat and oil.

Eating for your dosha optimizes your health using nature’s medicine to promote harmony in your everyday life.

Ayurveda has influenced many different styles of medicine over thousands of years and continues to be widely used all over the world. It provides tools to create balance in our life, like the dosha system, which implements a personalized strategy that fits the needs of an individual to find and maintain equilibrium.

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Which Hindu Goddess Are You Based on Your Ayurvedic Dosha?
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Jessica Gomes

Jessica Lynn Gomes is a creative writer and health enthusiast living in Laguna Beach, California. As an athlete, she develops her own workout routines and practices a clean eating lifestyle. She loves experimenting in the kitchen, creating new ways to cook gluten‐free. Check out Jessica's personal blog.

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