Many of us wonder with envy how other people can eat as much as they want without gaining weight or why we are the only ones who feel bad after eating a certain food when everyone around us seems to be able to enjoy it. The truth is that since most diets offer the same list of recommended foods for everyone, we may feel frustrated and blame ourselves when things don’t work to our advantage. If you have identified with us so far, then we think you’d benefit from learning about the Ayurvedic diet. These dietary recommendations, based on Ayurveda, Traditional Indian medicine, classify people into several different types, each with a menu that allows them to live a healthier and more balanced life. In the following sections, you’ll learn more about the method, be able to identify which type you belong to and get recommendations for your diet.
It is a nutritional approach, the result of a more than 5,000-year-old medical system, which believes that each of us needs a different amount of carbohydrates, vitamins, and minerals and that a large part of our digestive disorders is related to an imbalance in our daily diet. The decision about the menu we need is related to a variety of characteristics such as body structure and hair type, as well as speech, memory, and even sleep habits. An analysis of all this makes it possible to classify each person into a separate category, called "dosha," so that they can enjoy a personal menu adapted to their needs. This approach provides an explanation for diseases or digestive problems that result from a disturbance of the balance between the doshas in our body, which can be regulated through proper eating. As opposed to what many may think, this is not a vegetarian "Indian diet" or a diet that requires adherence to a limited menu, and it allows us to continue to consume the products we know as long as they are consistent with its basic principles.
The Ayurvedic diet claims that each of us belongs to one or more categories, which affects our physical, but also emotional and mental characteristics. This category makes us who we are, and it characterizes every cell and tissue in our bodies. Diseases, emotional problems, or digestive problems are the product of the disorder that occurs in response to the food we eat, as well as the stress we experience. In general, doshas are divided into three types: Pitta, Vata, and Kapha, where most of us are affected by one dominant category, and the other two may be expressed in a secondary way or not at all. Read the description of each dosha and find the one that suits you. If there are two categories you identify with, choose the one that best reflects you, but also review the recommendations for the secondary category and gradually apply some of them over time.
Pitta is an energy composed of fire and water, and people who belong to this category are highly concentrated, focused, and competitive in nature. Such people aren’t afraid to share their opinions and may be temperamental often suffering fits of anger. Their need to be on the move makes them stay active all the time, allowing them to enjoy muscular physiques and flexible joints. Their desire to do as much as possible leads to the fact that they do not need many hours of sleep, and every little noise during the night wakes them up. Many men with baldness and women with very thin hair belong to this group. When Pittas are in a state of nutritional imbalance, they may be susceptible to ulcers, infections, and itching. In addition, many of them also tend to suffer from excessive sweating, irregular exits, and even diarrhea.
Vata reflects the elements of space and air and is therefore very related to the respiratory system and circulatory system. People affected by this dosha are often creative, sensitive, prone to dreaminess and impulsive in nature. As a result, they may turn out to be wasteful, get excited about new things, lose interest in a short time, and be overwhelmed by situations they aren’t used to. Many artists, intellectuals and teachers are Vatas. These people have dry or thin hair and are very prone to injuries. When Vatas are in nutritional imbalance they will suffer from breathing problems, cold hands or feet, joint pain, constipation, and hair loss.
People belonging to the Kapha category are influenced by earth and water, making them forgiving, very caring, nature lovers and those who take their own paths. These are people with an excellent memory, a soft, pleasant tone and a tendency toward hoarding. The concern for others sometimes comes at the expense of concern for themselves, and therefore they are very exposed to various diseases, may suffer from diabetes and obesity, and in some cases, an ongoing imbalance may also lead them to feelings of depression and lack of self-esteem. Even when these people suffer from abdominal pain or dyspepsia, this will usually not be reflected in their exits, which will continue to be regular.
Food intake adapted to our dominant dosha can help us feel healthy and vital, but there are also a few guidelines on which Ayurvedic nutrition is based which important to pay attention to. The main ones are:
The recommendations for Pittas are those that will help them enjoy healthy and nutritious foods that don’t cause inflammation or heartburn.
The recommendations for Vatas will help you feel full all day long and include food that will allow you to enjoy a healthy and simple digestion process and avoid unnecessary snacking.
The principles that guide the recommended Kapha menu are those that help give the body energy throughout the day on the one hand, but at the same time allow you to avoid overeating and sweets.