According to Ayurveda science human body constitutes three bio-energies or dosha i.e, Vata (air), Pitta (fire) and Kapha (water). Dosha imbalance leads to illness and balance leads to health.
If you’ve been told to balance your dosha through any Prakriti quiz or practitioner, the best thing is to incorporate foods that are according to your Prakriti. Each of us has a combination of three doshas in our bodies called Vata(air and ether), Pitta(fire), Kapha(water and earth) that we are born with called our Prakriti or natural constitution or ayurvedic body type. According to Ayurveda’s principle of contrast, like increases like and dissimilar decrease similar, the diet of opposite nature as of the associated dosha/Prakriti helps in creating balance.
Vata Pacifying Diet
Vata is balanced by having freshly cooked foods that are soft in texture, protein and fat-rich (healthy fat) and seasoned with Vata pacifying spices, served hot or warm. These foods calm the Vata dominance by nourishing and lubricating the tissues. Qualities that one should favour should be opposite to that of Vata to keep it in balance. Vata by nature is cold, rough, dry so eating foods that are warm, moist, smooth and oily will help balance Vata.
Drinking plenty of warm or hot fluids, moist foods like yoghurt, berries, melons, bananas, pureed soups can be taken. Oily and nourishing foods like paneer, cheese, buttermilk, whole milk, ghee, wheat, nuts, and seeds are advised. Tastes to favour are sweet, salty and sour and it gets aggravated by pungent, astringent and bitter food like chillies, radish, raw onions, chocolates. Avoid having cold foods, dry foods like popcorn, wafers, potatoes, dried fruits and beans.
Pitta Pacifying Diet
Pitta is balanced by having food that is dry, mild, cooling, stabilising and dense. Pitta by nature is hot, sharp, oily, light, spreading and liquid. Eating foods that neutralise pitta maintains a balance and restrains from pitta aggravating symptoms in the body. Having raw foods and vegetables that are naturally sweet and bitter in taste and nature like apples, cherries, berries, dates, figs, grapes, papaya, pomegranate, raisins, strawberry and watermelon. Avoid sour fruits like lemons, tamarind, peaches, sour oranges, bananas, kiwi, green ripe mangoes. Cow and goat milk, ghee, grains that are sweet and nourishing in nature like amaranth, barley, oats, pancakes, pasta, quinoa, rice, tapioca, wheat should be taken. Avoid buckwheat, corn, millets, rye and yeast bread. Pulses like mung dal, soya beans, tofu are recommended. Avoid urad dal intake. Include spices like basil, black pepper, cumin, cardamom, coriander, fennel, mint, neem and turmeric in the diet. Minimize intake of spices like ginger powder(saunth), garlic, fenugreek, hing, mustard seeds, nutmeg, salt, ajwain, bay leaves.
Avoid having hot, spicy, pungent, salty, oily foods and liquids.
Kapha Pacifying Diet
Kapha is balanced by having foods that are light, warm, dry and rough. As the qualities of Kapha are heavy, cool, oily and smooth, eating foods that neutralise it maintains a balance and restrains from kapha aggravating symptoms. Having fruits and vegetables which are astringent, bitter and pungent are advised like apples, grapes, figs, mango, pomegranate, persimmons, raisins, green vegetables, bell peppers, chillies, cabbage, corn, okra, eggplant. Avoid potatoes, sweet potatoes, cucumber, olives, raw tomatoes, pumpkin. Grains like amaranth, buckwheat, corn, couscous, millets, oats, tapioca, quinoa is good. Avoid pasta, wheat, pancakes and rice. Include spices like ajwain, bay leaves, onion, ginger, garlic, pepper, fenugreek, chilli, fennel, saunth, pippali, cumin, coriander, turmeric, cinnamon in the diet. Minimize excessive sweet, sour and salt intake.