Pitta Dosha, Explained
The three doshas
Hello, dosha! If this is your first time learning about Ayurveda, you've come to the right place. In order to understand what makes up pitta dosha, we'll start by going over the basics of Ayurveda and then get into the specifics of each dosha.
There are three doshas in Ayurveda: vata, pitta, and kapha. Each dosha has a different element assigned to it: vata is air and space; pitta is fire and water; kapha is water and earth.
Each dosha also corresponds with a season: vata with fall, pitta with summer, kapha with winter (and spring for kapha-pittas).
Pitta's key characteristics
The key characteristics of pitta dosha are heat, an acidic nature, and sharpness. In Ayurveda, the three doshas are associated with the elements as follows: vata with air/space, pitta with fire/water, and kapha with earth/water.
In terms of their qualities (which Ayurvedic medicine says affect your state of health), the three doshas are associated as follows: Vata is dry, light and cold; pitta is hot and sharp; and kapha is heavy, slow-moving and oily.
Signs of imbalanced pitta
A few of the signs of an imbalanced pitta dosha include:
- Excessive heat in the body
- Skin problems
- Increased hunger and thirst
- Acidity, inflammation and liver issues such as hepatitis, jaundice, heartburn, nausea or diarrhea
Summer is prime time to correct a pitta imbalance
Summer is a great time to reduce pitta in your body. This is because pitta (heat) accumulates more during the summer months than it does in the fall and winter. The sun, heat, and humidity are important to keep in mind for pitta. It’s common for people with excess pitta to feel overheated or irritable during the summer season.
Some general tips you can use throughout the summer season include:
- Avoid spicy foods
- Don’t overdo exercise or other physical activity
- Stay away from stimulants such as caffeine and nicotine
Simple ways to balance pitta dosha during the summer
All doshas are made up of the five elements, but in different proportions. The water and fire elements comprise pitta dosha. In this formula, fire carries the day, making it the more dominant force.
People with a pitta dosha tend to be perfectionists. They are intelligent, organized and driven. They also like to debate and may have tempers that flare when they don't get their way. Pitta dosha types also value wealth and material goods and know how to get what they want through hard work.
Pitta types are sensitive to heat. If you have a lot of pitta in your body, you might find yourself getting angry or irritable during the hot summer months or after eating spicy foods that inflame your system even further (more on eating for your dosha here). Excess pitta can manifest as skin conditions like acne or rosacea, heartburn, high blood pressure or ulcers. But there's good news: There are ways to cool down your internal temperature so you don't feel so frazzled all the time!
Here are some simple ways to balance out excess pitta during summer:
Pitta dosha tends to be more balanced during the fall and winter, but here are some ways to know if it's out of whack and how to realign it.
Pitta dosha is most balanced during the fall and winter.
But, with summer in full swing, pitta can get out of balance (especially if you live somewhere hot like Los Angeles.)
Here’s how to know if your pitta is out of whack and what to do about it:
You love a good debate—but not for the sake of argument. Rather, you just love getting down to brass tacks and cutting through fluff. That’s because you’re a sharp thinker with excellent analytical skills—which, by the way, can also make you super critical at times.