Understanding Kapha Dosha
That which binds things
Kapha is the Dosha (or vital energy) in which the earth and water elements predominate. According to ancient Vedic texts, Kapha’s core qualities are heavy, slow, cool, oily, smooth, dense, soft, stable, and cloudy; it is the Dosha that allows lubrication.
This Dosha is responsible for the ability to structure and make things cohesive. It accounts for your stability, substance, lubrication, and support. It governs your mental and physical endurance, empathy, patience, and compassion. Kapha is associated with anabolism, which is the mechanism by which molecules are built from smaller units.
In your body, Kapha includes all stability, immunity, vigor, joint lubrication, and memory retention. It is also the most dominant Dosha in your young life before adulthood.
If your most prominent Dosha is Kapha, you probably relate to various of the following points:
- Loving and compassionate.
- Calm and steady mind.
- Forgiving, but can be possessive.
- Graceful and focused on maintaining harmony with the environment.
- Can be lethargic and resistant to change.
- Like to take things slow and steady.
- Crave sweets.
- Irregular sleep pattern, sometimes overindulging in rest and napping too much.
To restore and balance Kapha, you need to use opposing qualities such as turning to discipline when you are struggling to find motivation, avoiding oily foods, staying away from day naps, and doing 30 minutes of vigorous exercise daily.
Doshas exist in several things, not just in persons. Tastes, seasons, climates, landscapes, plants, and animals lean towards a specific energy combination. Kapha’s predominance can be found in sweet and salty flavors, early morning dew, mountains, tree sap, or even elephants.
A simple Dinacharya (or daily routine) that you can follow for Kapha is as follows:
- Try to go to bed at 10 P.M. at the latest and wake up at 4:30 A.M.
- Always avoid heavy meals. This will help balance the excessive lethargy that might prevent you from having a steady energy flow throughout the day. Consume small amounts of coffee to help you ward off sluggishness.
- Vary your routine, clean out your closet every season.
- Practice Pranayama (yogic breathing) before meditation.
- One of Kapha’s best remedies is Abhyanga (oil massage), which you can give yourself daily. Some of the best oils for Kapha are sesame, almond, and corn.
- Opt for pungent and bitter foods; and fresh, natural, and, ideally, organic ingredients. Avoid dairy and refined sugars.
- Engage in vigorous and challenging exercises like hot yoga, martial arts, jogging, biking, and hiking, ideally in nature.
- Use amber or musk-based scents.
- Follow a Kapha Diet.
“Due to their heavy nature, a kapha imbalance is expressed through lethargy, sluggish digestion, weight gain, congestion and excess mucous. Emotionally, a kapha type will be stubborn, slow to react, develop attachment and feel uninspired. They resist change and can become overly controlling. Kapha type skin can show excess moisture and oiliness.” (Clare, s.f.)
Remember to check your Vikruti (or current state of Dosha imbalance) at least every quarter or whenever you feel something is off, and adjust your Dinacharya accordingly. When you are the most balanced, you feel the best, and you will realize that’s what it takes to feel amazing in your own skin.
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