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Panchmahabhoota Thought:

According to this philosophy, every living object, in the plant as well as in the animal kingdom (including human beings), is made up of a living material which has five basic constituents. Every living object is thus a unique creation manifested through these five basic elements— Earth (pruthvi), Water (aap), Divine Fire (tej), Air (vayu) and Universal Space (aakash). These five basic elements are called the panchmahabhootas .These panchmahabhootas ultimately create treedoshas (tree = three, doshas = basic components or organizations) which constitute our body.

Tridosha Thought:

Each human being is either of vaat prakruti (prakruti dominated by vaat dosh) or of pitta prakruti (prakruti dominated by pitta dosh) or of kafa prakruti (prakruti dominated by kafa dosh). It is said that vaat dosh is created by aakash (Universal Space) and vayu (air), pitta dosh is created by tej (Divine Fire) and kafa dosh is created by aap (Water) and pruthvi (Earth).

Our constitution is determined by these three doshas at the time of garbhdharana (fertilization). When the embryo is formed, the constitution is determined for life; the percentage of these three doshas is determined at this time and this remains unchanged throughout life.
These three doshas or three energetic forces control the activities of the body. As follows:


The Vata dosha is the most important of the three doshas. It has been said in ayurveda classic books that “ pitta , Kapha and all other body tissues are considered lame without assistance of VATA .” Vata dominates the lower part of the body, which is below umbilicus. The movements of body fluid, metabolism, elimination of waste products, semen ejaculation, pushing the fetus out of body, relaying stimulus to brain and response to organs and tissues, heart beat, respiration, body movements etc are assisted by VATA.
Vata dominated regions are intestines, lumbar region, ears, bones and skin.
Vata gets vitiated due to following reasons.
• Controlling natural urges like urination, defecation, hunger, thirst, etc.
• Late nights.
• Irregular food habits.
• Talking in a high pitch.
• Over physical and mental exertion.
• Consumption of spicy, dry, bitter foods.
• Exposure to severe dry and cold climate.
The opposites of above-mentioned reason normalize the vitiated vata.


The pitta dosha assists the body fire or Agni, which plays a major role in body’s metabolic activities. The locations where pitta dominates are digestive system, skin, eyes, brain, and blood. Pitta maintains body temperature. The secretions like digestive juices pigments like melanin (bhrajaka pitta), hemoglobin (ranjaka pitta) are all types of pitta.
Pitta is dominant in regions of Umbilicus, stomach, sweat, lymph, blood, eyes and skin.
Pitta gets vitiated due to following reasons.
• Excess consumption of spicy, sour, salty foods.
• Consuming alcohol in excess.
• Over exposure to hot sunny climate.
• Short temperedness.
• Using dried vegetables.
• Indigestion of food.
The opposites of above-mentioned reason normalize the vitiated pitta.


Kapha provides bulk to body, lubrications, moistness, fertility, stability, strength, and memory. Helps in binding process wherever necessary. This is heaviest of all doshas.
Kapha dominated regions are chest, neck, head, stomach, body fat, nose and tongue
Kapha gets vitiated due to following reasons.
• Sleeping in daytime.
• Consuming sweets, chilled food, in excess.
• Consuming fish, sesame, sugarcane, milk and milk products.
The opposites of above-mentioned reason normalize the vitiated kapha.

When these doshas are in balanced condition the body remains healthy. If these doshas get imbalanced the body succumbs to diseases. Doshas get imbalanced frequently due to change in climate, seasons, lifestyles, diet etc. The treatment is to bring back the doshas to normalcy and expel the toxin or ama produced during the imbalanced condition. A diet and health suggestions are given to the individual according to the needs of his/her constitution and present imbalance.

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Comment by Gina Tyler DHOM on February 17, 2010 at 12:27pm
Great Subject,Thanks for posting this wonderfull information on Ayurveda
In my practice I also encourage the use of Panchakarma,Pranayana.

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