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Understanding Kapha Dosha

By Irina | ForeverSunday

May 18, 2020

dosha, Kapha, Kapha dosha, kapha season

This article about Kapha Dosha is based on a question I got from a reader (thank you for inspiring me!).

In this post we’ll look deeper into understanding Kapha Dosha. Ayurveda explains how to stay healthy and live a life full of joy and purpose through knowledge of the Doshas. The Doshas are the powers that work together to rule and influence your life.

If we look at Kapha Dosha in relation to our body and our mind, we are referring to what is called the ayurvedic body-mind type (our nature or Prakriti). We say things like: “I’m Kapha”, or “I am a Kapha dominant person”. But the word ‘Dosha’ can also point to the energy that we live in. Let’s dive in!

what is my dosha

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Sign up to get started with the free 10 page Ayurveda dosha workbook:  take the dosha quiz and get nutrition and exercise recommendations based on your type!

Kapha Dosha in relation to your mind-body type

What does it mean to “be a Kapha”?

We all have a little bit or a lot of Kapha Dosha in us.

A Kapha dominant person has personality traits like being a calm and caring person, loving stability and their routines (and hating change), they are good-natured, patient and rarely get angry. They are empathetic and very charismatic. Kaphas are kind and generous and love their family to bits.

A Kapha body is stronger built with an appealing roundness, lush hair, big Bambi eyes and soft skin. They are extremely huggable!

A misconception about Kapha is that Kaphas are ‘fat’ but that’s not true. They might have a little higher natural weight than Vata or Pitta dominant persons, but if someone (any Dosha) is overweight it’s a sign of an imbalance, not that they have Kapha nature per se.

Learn more about the Doshas

For a better understanding of how Kapha Dosha manifests in the body and mind, do a Dosha quiz like this one in my Dosha Workbook, to go through all the traits and characteristics of the different Doshas. Also read these articles:

Kapha Dosha and the seasons

Winter and spring is when Kapha rules. In winter Kapha builds up around us and inside us, automatically lowering Vata and Pitta energy. So in winter Vatas and Pittas may actually feel more balanced! But a Kapha in winter may struggle more with imbalances because there will be an excess Kapha influence (the own mind-body influence + seasonal influence).

In spring the Kapha excess starts aggravating, resulting in symptoms like weight gain, tiredness, sluggish digestion, colds and allergies.

I wrote a blog post about aggravated Kapha and what to do about it here.

Kapha and the time of day

The Doshas also rule during different times of the day, sometimes referred to as the Dosha clock. Vata time is between 2am and 6am and between 2pm and 6pm. Pitta time is between 10am and 2pm and between 10pm and 2am. Kapha time is between 6am and 10am and between 6pm and 10pm.

That’s why Ayurveda recommends getting up before Kapha time starts, to not drag the slow Kapha energy into your day (unless that’s what you want), to not eat a big meal at night when Kapha rules with slow digestion and also to choose to go to bed exactly during Kapha time to promote sound Kapha sleep.

Kapha Dosha and your age

Then there are the Dosha energies that rule during different ages. From when we are born (chubby little Kapha angels) until 18 years old we are in the Kapha age of life. Pitta rules our professional and family life from 18 until 60ish, and as we get even older Vata is boss.

Of course these are not exact ages; it will be different for everybody and the transition is gradual, like the season change. Just like it’s not ‘summer’ on the 21st of June, you are not of Pitta age just because you turned 18!

All these influences define how we feel in our mind-body. It’s confusing and seems like a lot, but once you get a real feeling of these influences in your day-to-day life it will become easy to adjust your nutrition and lifestyle accordingly.

I hopes this article helps you understand Kapha Dosha. What more questions do you have? :)

About the author

Irina is a certified Ayurvedic coach and yoga teacher in the Hatha and Traditional Tantra traditions (500+hr RYT). Irina has been teaching and writing about Ayurveda and Yoga, hosting retreats and offering online classes, workshops and consultations since 2015, when she founded ForeverSunday Ayurveda and Yoga.

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