We are unique individuals with distinct interests, tastes, likes and dislikes. To keep ourselves healthy, we must understand our bodies and discover the elements that speak to our individual constitution. Making lifestyle decisions that are conducive to our body type will improve our health and keep our bodies strong enough to fight disease.
We invite you to discover your own uniqueness and awaken your mind and body to a new method of healing.
Your constitution is a distinct combination of elements that makes you who you are. This combination or prakriti is what determines your body type and your personality. In ayurveda, the mainstay of preserving health is to maintain the equilibrium in your body and mind. When there is a shift in this equilibrium and the natural ratio of dosha and mahaguna is disrupted, the body becomes vulnerable to illness.
The three dosha are the essential components of our bodies, and they each have a different function. Although each person has all three dosha, one dosha is dominant, which gives light to the person’s physical and cognitive characteristics. Below is a chart with the three dosha, their functions and their accompanying characteristics:
|Function||Governs all movements of the body, propulsion of food in the intestine, muscle movement of the extremities, heart beats, breathing movements, reproductive functions, excretory functions.||Responsible for metabolic and digestive processes, regulation of heat, transforming processes, actions of hormones, enzymes and neurotransmitters||Controls structure, cohesion, growth, healing and tissue repair in the body|
|Physical Characteristics||Slim, lean body frame, less muscle mass
small eyes, blackish or greyish complexion,
Dry, coarse skin
Dry, curly/kinky hair
Intolerant of cold talkative and speaks quickly
Light, interrupted sleep
Weak, hoarse voice
Frequent sex drive
|Average height; moderate build, Reddish color of skin,
Thin, soft hair that is light in color,
Intolerant of heat
|Large, well composed heavy body frame, big beautiful eyes Soft smooth skin,
Thick, dark and wavy hair Large teeth
Intolerant of cold/damp
|Cognitive Characteristics||Quick, restless and erratic minds Learns things quickly, poor long-term memory Worrisome, overly sensitive, anxious
Creative, friendly, caring
|Sharp, methodical, well-organized minds Intelligent
Stubborn, jealous, short tempered, happy, joyful
|Calm, tranquil, steady minds
Slow to learn
Good long-term memory
Lethargic, possessive, unmotivated
Caring, forgiving, affectionate
The mahaguna are the dosha psychological correlates. Just as there are three dosha that make up the body, there are three mahaguna that make up the mind: Sattva, Rajas and Tamas. A person’s psychological characteristics are determined by the relative dominance of one mahaguna. Below is a chart that summarizes the psychological characteristics of the three mahaguna
|Characteristics||Characterized by lightness, consciousness, pleasure, clarity, tranquillity, peace and purity.
Sattva is a combination of Rajas and Tamas, which represent two extremes.
|Characterized by motion and stimulation. Rajas represents desires, wishes, ambitions and fickle-mindedness, dynamism, outward creativity, heat, rage and radiance.||Characterized by heaviness and resistance. It represents qualities that are opposite of rajas: regulation, timidity, sadness, delusion, false knowledge, laziness, apathy and darkness.|
Exploring the combination of dosha and mahaguna that is unique to your own prakriti can help you to be in tune with your body and make healthier decisions. With your prakriti in mind, you can choose to make diet and lifestyle decisions that are conducive to your body type, and keep your body in a healthy state.