top of page

Elemental existence and the humours of the body:

All existence is made up of five elements and these elements have qualities that occur differently in each individual. Ether, air, fire, water, and earth are the elements and there are 20 attributes existing in nature and within ourselves. These attributes consist of organic and inorganic objects and consists of 10 opposites which helps to determine the appropriate opposite element theory of healing. If a symptom is hot apply cool, if it's dry apply moist, etc...

The attributes help define and describe the doshas and their relationship within us. As in the cosmos is in nature, and as in nature is in ourselves.

The doshas, the humours, are vata, pitta, and kapha and we each have a unique mix of one, two or all three. We are born with a certain constitution our Prakruti and as we live this life, our actions, personalities, food intake, energy movement within and without, that which we take in through our senses forms our current state, our Vikruti.

So when we look ayurvedically at symptoms of an individual we look to the qualities of the symptoms, and the person's doshic condition now and at origin.

DOSHAS: Vata, Pitta, Kapha.

The human body has three main body types called doshas: Vata (made up of the qualities of air and space), Pitta (fire and water), and Kapha (water and earth). These doshas determine the personality of an individual and their tendencies and habits on many levels. Ayurveda says that there are as many doshic mixes and as many possible imbalances as there are people.


Kapha is earth and water elements. Earth is dull, dense, steady, stagnant, heavy, hard and water is liquid, soft, smooth, cool, oily slimy. Earth and water qualities reside in kapha's origin in the body, the stomach and lower lungs. When an excess of sweet, sour, and salty, kaphagenic food, for example breads, cheese, heavier starchy vegetables, processed food and desserts, and certain nuts and fruits; anything in excess can create in balance and in this case kapha foods or kapha activities like a sedantary lifestyle or never exercising, accumulating emotions or attachments, will overflow kapha qualities from the stomach and circulate them elsewhere in the body.

Kapha season is late winter and spring. Folks with kapha features might have a stocky frame, tendency to have excess weight, larger bone structure, round face, round palm, big round eyes, thick eye brows and eye lashes, thick luxurious hair, full lips, oilier skin....


Pitta is the fire element, and some water qualities at times overlap here. It is sharp, intense, hot, light, dry, and resides in the small intestines, and all that goes with that stage of digestion, liver, gall bladder, enzymes, bile. When there's an increase or regular intake of sour, salty, pungent, too many hot, spicy, dry foods, alcohol, tobacco, drugs, or too much competitive activities, or intense lengthy exercising, too much drinking, smoking, late night working, burning the candle at both ends, and other heat provoking intensities will have pitta elements overflowing from the small intestines and circulate elsewhere relocating into a pitta symptom someplace else in the body.

Pitta season is summer. Folks of pitta nature have features like athletic frame, strong or pronounced muscles, angular face, blue or green eyes, pointed nose, oval palm, medium fingers, square palm, thinner hair, lighter color hair, freckles, sensitive skin.....


Vata consists of the elements ether and air and it's origin is the colon. Vata qualities are clear, light, subtle, soft, mobile, dry, light, cold, and rough. When there's an excess of astringent, pungent, bitter tastes, vata increasing foods like foods with dry and cold qualities, crackers, raw vegetables especially broccoli and cauliflower and certain raw fruit, dried fruit and seeds, protein bars, meals in a drink or meals in a bar and other certain foods and vata vitiating activites like eating while standing, or eating while driving basically not eating while sitting, traveling, commuting, life changes like a job or a move or relationships, irregular daily rhythms, over exercising, under eating, too little of sleep, these things will increase vata and it'll overflow to other areas of the body.

Vata season is fall and early winter. Folks with vata might have features like a slight frame, or extra tall or extra short, narrow face, skinny fingers, narrow palm, curlier hair, dryer skin.....

A small example is for instance when there is a hurting joint, if it's wet, cool and swollen with fluid it is of kapha qualities. Whereas if a joint has shooting pain and is hot to the touch, or inflammed and red it is of pitta origin. And if a joint is aggravated in a vata way, achy, cracking, dry then vata accumulated and overflowed, and relocated to that joint.

While Ayurveda is a science of life, it is also a science for each patient, treating each person as unique. So in a session we check the pulse, tongue, eyes, health history, tendencies, personality traits, physical, mental and emotional features and assess through such diagnostics to have a detailed idea of the layers of an individual and of the layers which are occurring.

Online dosha test soon coming......

bottom of page