understanding the kapha dosha

understanding the kapha dosha

by May 10, 2012

In our last series on the doshas, we attempt to demystify the kapha dosha – its qualities, attributes, and things that balance the kapha. If you’ve read the last few posts in this series, you probably know your dosha type. If not, start here… and it will help you understand what your main dosha is.

Kapha is a combination of water (jal) and earth (prithvi). These components are well reflected in the kapha dosha’s physical and emotional attributes. Physiologically, the kapha provides stability, structure, and protection. It is responsible for keeping cells and tissues together, and forms muscle mass, fat, and bone. Kapha controls emotional impulses.

Physical Qualities

A dominant kapha is characterized by a strong, big build and thick skin. They usually have thick, luxurious hair, and are emotionally and physically strong. Eyes are large and soft.

Kapha skin is, in most cases, acne prone and oily, although they have fewer wrinkles compared to other dosha types.

When in balance, kapha’s have sound sleep and perfect digestion.

Emotional and Psychological Attributes

Kaphas are –

  • Thoughtful
  • Patient
  • Strong willed
  • Loyal
  • Sensitive to heat
  • Attached to people and things

People with a dominant kapha like enjoying life, but often need a push towards an activity that offers mental and physical stimulation. Kaphas are very strong willed and do not like change, be it to their daily routine or even to their surroundings.

They also exhibit mild traits of greed and possessiveness. It is very important that they de-clutter frequently.

Imbalances in the kapha

Because the kapha controls several emotive impulses, any external or internal changes in the body may cause an imbalance in this dosha.

When imbalanced, the kapha may show the following signs:

  • Excessive sleep
  • Increased water intake
  • Greed
  • Hoarding
  • Clutter in personal and professional life
  • Obesity
  • Depression
  • Diabetes
  • Asthma

How to keep kapha balanced

Keeping your dosha balanced is extremely important as it allows you to function to your maximum potential in your daily life.

Here are some tips on keeping the kapha balanced:

  • Wake up early, preferably before 6AM, daily.
  • Get some exercise – Kaphas have a predisposition towards fat retention so exercise is crucial for them.
  • Get some change – Because kaphas love following a routine and may not give it up, it’s important they actively seek new sights and experiences that bring a change to their lives.
  • Get frequent massages to allow better circulation and exude peace.
  • Stay warm. During winters, keep yourself well protected and insulated.
  • Avoid clutter. Keep your home, office, car, and other spaces around you clean. Avoid hoarding things.
  • Warm spices like cloves and cinnamon are beneficial for kapha.

In the next part, we’ll talk about the kapha diet in detail.

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