By Noriko Morimoto
I had always heard that a woman’s menstrual cycle goes for about 28 to 30 days. But since I first started my period, I have never enjoyed that kind of regularity. There were times when I would have my period just once a year. When it did come, it was preceded by extreme PMS. Sometimes I would experience depression so heavy that I would have suicidal thoughts. These intense emotions would go away as soon as my period came, leaving me confused and scared for the next time. This was no way to live.
Making friends with kapha dosha is about embracing stability, compassion and even-mindedness. Cultivate balance in kapha and you experience the sweeter side of life.
Even if kapha is not a primary part of your constitution, the qualities that make up kapha (heavy, dense, cool, wet, soft) exist in you. Your body itself is made of kapha tissues such as bones, muscles and fat. Without the structure kapha provides, vata could not move and pitta could not transform. You need to maintain balance in all three doshas to enjoy true health in body, mind and spirit.
If you want to experience lifelong health, make vata dosha your friend.
The doshas, or three vital energies, help us understand how internal and external factors influence your health and well-being. Each of us has all three doshas, just in different amounts. While any dosha can become imbalanced in us at any time, the dosha you have most of is the one that is most likely to go out of balance. When you understand your tendencies related to imbalance, you can avoid doing those things and focus instead on what makes you feel your best.
When you are feeling imbalanced overall, vata is often the reason. With the light and subtle qualities of ethers and air elements that make up vata, it is the easiest of the doshas to go out of balance. And because of the mobility of the air element, imbalanced vata will disturb the other doshas toward imbalance.
You may know about panchakarma as an Ayurvedic cleanse, but the benefits go far beyond that. People have been undergoing panchakarma for centuries because it not only removes toxins from the tissues of your body, but also promotes healing and rejuvenation in your whole being. That’s because panchakarma centers on rebuilding the strength of agni, digestive fire, along with balancing the three doshas. This brings about profound effects in all aspects of your health, including your mental well-being and spiritual openness.
The holidays: Everyone’s favorite time to relax and reflect upon the year behind us. Or…maybe not.
The winter holiday season usually means a time of frantic decoration, overeating at parties, endless shopping and exhausting travel. Overactivity, especially during the vata season of the year, causes imbalance that leads to illness, fatigue and the customary New Year’s resolutions to regain health. But just because it is that way for some, it doesn’t have to be the case for you.
A combination of cooked white basmati rice and split mung has been shared through centuries as a simple and nourishing way to heal your body and mind. This is kitchadi – Ayurveda’s healing food.
Why does kitchadi heal? First, the rice, mung and (optional) vegetables offer balanced nourishment for your body. Second, by adding spices, like cumin and ginger, the meal becomes cleansing, balanced and satisfying. Finally – and most importantly – by gently cooking the ingredients together to a soupy consistency, the meal is easily digestible, which gives your body a break and restores the natural strength of agni, digestive fire.