Mind-body wellness can be the key to moving through life feeling balanced and ready to take on the day. Learn more about the impact of your doshas on mind body wellness, and how to balance them to feel your best.
by Stacy Mosel, LMSW
You know when you feel “off,” but you can’t pinpoint why, exactly? Maybe it’s because you’ve been overworked or overstressed, you haven’t been able to get a good night’s sleep, or you’re just exhausted from the chaos going on in the world.
Consider this: you could have a dosha imbalance. Ayurveda could provide the natural support you’ve been seeking. Here at the Root of it All, we believe in the power of combining Ayurvedic herbs and spices with natural CBD extracts as a way to promote mind-body balance and help everyday concerns, such as tension or occasional sleeplessness.
Keep reading to learn more about dosha imbalances and the best Ayurvedic practices to achieve mind-body wellness, so you can feel recharged and ready to face the day.
The Importance of Mind-Body Wellness
The mind and body are intricately connected, so what happens in one affects the other. For example, if you’re tense or worried, your body naturally contracts, whereas when you’re relaxed, your body is more open and receptive. Likewise, if you don’t physically feel well, you may not have an uplifted mood.
The environment in which you live has an impact on your overall well-being as well. If you live in a noisy or crowded place and you’re sensitive to noise or easily overstimulated, you may have a tough time turning off and winding down, which can have a detrimental impact on your health. Similarly, people who require lots of activity and stimulation may feel restless and uncomfortable in a quiet or low-key setting.
All of these factors are affected by your dosha, or Ayurvedic body type, which is made up of your unique physical, emotional, mental and spiritual characteristics. Many people are dominant in one dosha, although some people have two that are dominant or a relatively even distribution of all three.
How To Recognize A Dosha Imbalance
Essentially, everything in the world — external stimuli, people, foods, and the environment — can impact your doshas. Depending on how your doshas manifest, what affects you won’t necessarily do the same for another person. For example, you may tolerate spicy food, whereas your partner thinks even black pepper is too hot. You might love crowds, but your best friend needs a lot of alone time to recharge.
One scientific paper published in the Journal of Ayurveda and Integrative Medicine explains that different doshas have different needs, and when these needs aren’t met, you can experience a dosha imbalance.
Recognizing when one or more of your doshas are imbalanced can be an important step towards achieving complete wellness.
Here, we’ll provide a brief overview of how you might identify a dosha imbalance.
Pitta is associated with the fire element, so it’s not surprising that a pitta imbalance can cause you to feel angry, hot-headed, irritable or critical. Physically, you may experience digestive issues, skin problems or problems with temperature regulation.
Vata corresponds with the air element, and it’s a lot easier to get out of balance than the other doshas. Vata imbalance can cause excess tension, sleep disturbances, sensitivity to cold, dry skin, headaches and fatigue.
Kapha is connected to the earth element. When out of balance, you can experience an array of effects, including low mood, slow digestion, lethargy, excess body weight or a lack of motivation to accomplish your goals.
Best Practices For Balancing Doshas
If you have a dosha imbalance, it usually occurs in your dominant dosha. If you’re not sure what your dominant dosha is, you can take an online quiz to discover it here. Then, follow the tips below.
1. Eat for Your Dosha
Avoid foods that cause imbalance and instead choose appropriately nourishing foods to help promote stability.
A pitta imbalance can benefit from reducing added fats (such as butter, cream, or oil) and heavy foods; instead, consume more cool or warm foods when balancing pitta. Include cold cereals, cold drinks, and sweet and bitter vegetables, such as cabbage, asparagus and bok choy.
Vata imbalance may mean that you need to reduce or eliminate cold foods (such as salad or raw vegetables) and include more warming foods and spices, such as ginger, cinnamon, cardamom and cloves.
Kapha imbalance can benefit from more light, dry and spicy foods. Avoid too many sweet or fatty foods, so no deep-frying or heavy foods when possible. Include a variety of spices, such as cumin, fenugreek, sesame and ginger.
2. Change Your Activities
When a dosha is out of balance, you’ll notice that you don’t feel like yourself in your interactions with others, and you might not feel comfortable in your skin. This is the time to take inventory of what you need, which may mean you need to change up your usual routine.
Here are a few ideas to get you started:
- Those with a Vata imbalance can benefit from more time to rest and indulge in self-care
- Those with a Pitta imbalance could mean you need to relax and get a lot of fresh air when temperatures are cool
- Those with a Kapha imbalance can benefit from revving things up, such as getting more exercise and avoiding sleeping too much or napping during the day.
3. Include an Ayurvedic Tincture Amplified with CBD
The Root of it All has a tincture for a variety of needs that can be related to dosha imbalance. For example, our SLOW blend is perfect for those moments when you need to relax and promote feelings of comfort and balance. If you feel like you could use some digestive support, check out our SETTLE blend to assist with balancing your digestive system. And if you’re having trouble catching some z’s, our STOP blend can help promote balanced, natural sleep.
Achieving The Ultimate Mind-Body Wellness
Balancing your doshas can be a matter of trial and error — you may need to experiment to find what works to create the right balance in your lifestyle. Maybe that means making changes to the way you deal with others — do you need to say no to requests, take more “you” time, or speak your mind more often? Perhaps you need to try going to bed earlier or later or turn off overstimulating news programs earlier in the day. See what works for you and keep track of how you feel when you make different changes.
If you still feel like you need some extra support, consider consulting an Ayurvedic practitioner for more personalized advice — you can search the online database available through the National Ayurvedic Medical Association’s website to find a qualified professional near you.
Stacy Mosel, LMSW is a health and wellness writer, as well as a licensed social worker, yoga enthusiast, certified Reiki practitioner and musician. She received a bachelor’s degree in Music from the State University of New York at Stony Brook in 1999 and a Master of Social Work from New York University in 2002.